July 4th, 2016
Unscientific, unethical and unlawful EU snus ban
Good news confirmed today: Swedish Match, the main European snus manufacturer, will take legal action to overturn the European Union ban on snus -see Reuters 1 July 2016: Swedish Match to challenge EU snus ban in UK court. This ban is possibly the most absurd and harmful piece of legislation the European Union has ever concocted, and its demise is long overdue.
The EU snus ban was introduced in 1992 (directive 92/41/EEC) and reaffirmed in 2001 (2001/37/EC) and reaffirmed again in 2014 in the Tobacco Products Directive 2014/40/EU Article 17. The ban only exists because of posturing by self-indulgent and negligent politicians backed by prohibitionist harm-inducing NGOs. It has no scientific, ethical or legal justification whatsoever (see Death by regulation: the EU ban on low-risk oral tobacco) and can only be causing harm to health by denying smokers elsewhere in Europe benign alternatives to smoking that work so well in Sweden.
In 2003, Swedish Match challenged the identical ban in the previous Tobacco Products Directive 2001/37/EC (Article 8) and failed. See Case C-210/03 before the ECJ. However, a great deal has changed since then and even in 2003/4 I think they were unlucky to face a politicised court and improper scientific assessments of risk pushed by anti-scientific prohibitionists. But why should a legal challenge succeed now when a challenge failed in 2003-4? There are at least ten reasons to believe it will succeed this time. >> read the full post
June 22nd, 2016
It’s a massive decision with thousands of implications not easily recognised or understood. I want people to make the right decision, which I think is remain. Though I know a lot about this I don’t want anyone to take my word for it. So I’ve drafted up some questions to help you explore and challenge your own views.
>> read the full post
June 20th, 2016
I’m off on holiday before the EU referendum – but here’s my take on why to vote Remain in ten provocations. A longer, more analytical view here. >> read the full post
June 10th, 2016
DANGER: E-cigarette ‘gateway’ studies may expose gullible readers to reputational harm
Sometimes studies appear that can create the appearance of the discovery of a ‘gateway effect’ – the idea that vaping causes young people to progress to smoking.
Update: a ‘gateway’ study has just been published (13 June) and lots of dupes have duly fallen for it – see “Study published” below.
Beware! Here is an eight-point guide to evaluating such studies and the politically motivated claims that often go with them. >> read the full post
June 6th, 2016
I am particularly concerned about a sweeping statement made by one of the most vocal activists in tobacco control, Professor Stanton Glantz of the University of California at San Francisco. He asserts completely incorrectly and irresponsibly that a new study shows long-term vaping risk could equate to half the risk of smoking. This is a grotesque exaggeration.
Here I take a closer look at the claim and the study that supposedly lies behind it, looking at six failures in Professor Glantz’s reasoning: >> read the full post
May 29th, 2016
Warning: misleading people about the benefits of e-cigarettes is logically and morally equivalent to misleading people about the harms of smoking
A new discussion paper on e-cigarettes has come out in Australia. “Options to minimise the risks associated with the marketing and use of electronic nicotine delivery systems [ENDS] in Australia” by Professor Chapman and some of his following at the University of Sydney. [PDF – 8.5Mb or via Scribd as embedded below or linked here]. >> read the full post
May 27th, 2016
Meet people where they are or want to be
Guest post by Louise Ross, Service Manager at Leicester City Stop Smoking Service – the pioneering e-cig friendly service for smokers who want to quit. Louise explains how her service is teaming up with a vape bar and vaper to give practical help to smokers as they master vaping as an alternative to smoking. This is real public health to me – and I hope the public health establishment is paying attention and reflecting carefully on what is happening here.
Louise starts here… >> read the full post
May 24th, 2016
The chart of an audience poll from the Global Tobacco Dependency Treatment Summit 2016 (23-24 May 2016, twitter:#TDTSummit16) is deeply disturbing…
>> read the full post
May 23rd, 2016
Dr Chan is at war – but who or what is she fighting?
The World Health Organisation does a good line in war-like rhetoric when it comes to tobacco policy. But what is it actually at war with? In this post, I examine the confusion in ‘tobacco control’ about what it is actually trying to achieve. >> read the full post
May 21st, 2016
Fantastic to see the increasingly powerful UK vaping consumer voice tearing into poor policy and bad law that will do nothing but harm while meddling incompetently in the free choices of adults and free movement of goods. The Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) and its UK implementing regulations are truly dreadful.
Here are three things to look at:
- New Nicotine Alliance – Letter to the Department of Health – on the harmful unintended consequences of the TPD
- New Nicotine Alliance – Letter to the Prime Minister – on the escape from the TPD
- House of Lords fatal motion and #LordsVapeVote campaign TAKE ACTION!
>> read the full post