We are talking about this:
PASSIVE SMOKING AND CHILDREN.
A report by the Tobacco Advisory Group of the Royal College of Physicians March 2010.
It is reasonable to assume that the ‘Tobacco Advisory Group’ is a group of Psychopathic Zealots who will do anything to produce their desired result.
This report is long and messy. I am not quite sure who it is aimed at. Certainly, no politician would read it; anyone who has tried to read Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity and understand it right away would see the similarities (except that Einstein’s theory is easier).
Tonight, I am going to talk about a couple of things in a general way.
When a person smokes tobacco, he absorbs nicotine. His body uses some of the substances in nicotine and excretes the rest. These excretions include the substance ‘cotinine’. For example, a person who smokes one cig per day will excrete (via urine or via sweat or via the tongue) a unit of cotinine. A person who smokes fifty cigs per day will excrete fifty times the amount of cotinine as does a person who smokes only one cig per day. The reality may not be as simple as that, but you get the idea.
The report says that cotinine levels form the FACTUAL BASIS of measurements of nicotine absorption by children. But there is a serious problem since cotinine does not hang about – it is quickly excreted and disappears from the body.
Leaving that curiosity aside, however, we still have to ask, “So what? Is cotinine harmful in itself?” The answer is, “NO” – or, at least, no one has claimed that it is.
The reason that I am making a bit of a fuss about this is that the Zealots who produced this report made A BIG THING of elevated levels of cotinine; almost as though fifty times greater levels of contine in excretions was, somehow, indicative of fifty times more dangerous or damaging. That is not so. Excretion means ‘getting rid of’; it means ZERO harm.
Tonight, I want to keep it simple, and so I shall draw attention to just a couple of things which the Zealots who wrote this report do not want people to notice, and which the Zealots hide within charts and stuff. Specifically, I am talking about MALFORMATIONS. That is, ‘congenital malformations’, such as clubfoot, cleft palate, missing toes and fingers, and such. The devil, for the Zealots, is in the detail, which they try to obfuscate.
So let us look at the coincidence of smoking during pregnancy and malformations. The report lists twelve studies.
It is important to understand the meaning of the phrase ‘Relative Risk’ at this point. Keep it simple. If a risk is normal, reasonable and acceptable, then the Relative Risk is 1 (one). Thus, there is an RR of very old people dying in hospital, which it is not possible to prevent, of 1. Problems arise when, in certain hospitals, that RR rises. If the RR rises in a particular hospital rises to 2, that is no big deal. Very old people die. But if the RR rises to 20, then questions arise. We are now talking about differences which cannot be explained by normal variations. Thus, it is not difficult to understand that RRs can have greater or lesser significance.
In the ‘Passive Smoking and Children’ Report, there is a section about MALFORMATIONS. That is, children born with what we would normally call ‘genetic defects’, such as club foot. The Zealots tried to blame these malformations on the mother smoking during pregnancy, but their expectations misfired. I suspect that the Zealots did not dare to fiddle with the figures, but they tried to hide them in a morass of charts and stuff.
There were twelve studies which evaluated the ‘Relative Risk’ of a child being born with a malformation as a result of the mother smoking during pregnancy. Bearing in mind that the number ’1′ equals ‘no difference’, and that a number greater than 1 equals that smoking caused malformations, and that a number smaller than 1 equals that smoking mothers had LESS malformations, let us look at the results of the dozen studies.
[Remember that the number 'one' means that there is no difference between smoking and non-smoking pregnant women. Less than one means that smoking women have the advantage. More than one means that non-smoking women have the advantage]
1.18, 1.10, 0.98, 1.oo, 0.90, 0.98, 0.94, 1.06, 1.00, 1.03, 1.02, 1.15, 1.10.
Thus, it is PATENTLY OBVIOUS that pregnant women smoking IN NO WAY CAUSES MALFORMATIONS.
Tonight, I can go not much further. But I do have similar figures, again from this report (which was trumpeted by the publicity departments of the Zealots as ‘proof’ that SHS harms children) which debunk the idea that pregnant women smoking damages the hearts of their unborn children. There are twenty three studies quoted.
Baring in mind, again, that an RR of 1 means ‘no effect’, and an RR of more than one means ‘damaging’, and an RR of less than one means ‘protective’ (possibly):
1.05, 0.8, 0.99, 0.70, 0.5, 1.3, 0.92, 0.9, 1.14, 0.94, 1.21, 0.71, 1.04, 1.15, 1.56, 1.19, 0.97, 1.2, 0.78, 1.00, 1.50, 1.98, 1.34.
Do you observe something of great interest? It is almost certain that you will not. NOTE THE LAST THREE. Tobacco Control made special mention of those figures. TC said there was an increase of 50% as regards the third-last figure, and that there was an increase of 98% in the penultimate figure.
How clever! But these increases are increases in almost nothing. 0.000001 multiplied by 100 equals 0.0001. Of no significance. Only politicians who are ignorant, or those who have an agenda could possibly be fooled by this stuff.
But that is not the main part of the report. It goes on to claim that specific ‘diseases’, such as meningitis, are caused by SHS. We shall look at that tomorrow (all being well).
Something brought this subject to my mind today. I can’t remember what. I remembered that I had ‘bookmarked’ a report from the College of Physicians ‘Tobacco Advisory Group’ so I dug it out. The report is called “Passive Smoking and Children”. I’ve been reading it again.
It really is hard work because it is very complicated. It covers smoking during pregnancy, and the supposed effects thereof on still-births, abnormalities (including things like cleft lip, missing fingers, etc), birth weight, etc. Chart follows chart follows chart, all complete with relative risks and so on and so on.
The report was funded by CRUK, and other usual suspects. It was produced in 2010, but I don’t know what the objective of producing the report was. It may not have been to support any specific government initiative, but might easily have been merely to add to the ‘growing body of evidence’ for use world-wide.
I have in mind to give this report some ‘in-depth’ study. Not really, really in depth because that would mean reading the hundreds of referenced documents. What I mean is to pick certain parts of the report which actually refer to the effects of SHS on children and nothing else and look at them from a lay person’s point of view. Also, as best I can, to differentiate between propaganda and facts.
A huge problem with reports like this is that one does not know to what extent ‘cherry-picking’ occurred. That is, to what extent did the authors include those studies which suited their purpose and excluded those which did not. We have the magnificent example of the exclusion of the Enstrom and Kabat study from the USA Surgeon General report about the effects of SHS. [That study was huge and revealed no SHS effects] But that may not matter if the evidence is, in any case, weak.
It will take some time, but I want to treat it in a similar way to the McTear V Imperial Tobacco Case (see sidebar). That is, Tobacco Control try to paint a huge canvas which looks dreadful, but when you look at the canvas in detail, it turns out that the the elements of the canvas are not as damning as one might think. It’s a bit like watching a specific round in a boxing match in slow motion. You see blow after blow after blow, and you think, “How can a person survive such a pounding?” But when you see the round in normal time, you see that, at the end of the round, the boxers retire to their corners totally unharmed!
As a foretaste, let us look at this quote from the first line of the preface to report:
“In 2003, over 11,000 people in the UK are estimated to have died as a result of passive smoking.”
You can see where I am going straight-away, can’t you? What is this ‘estimated’? Do they not KNOW? Why do they not KNOW?
Let us think for a moment about ‘estimates’. In order to make an estimation, one needs some FACTS upon which to base one’s estimate. In this case, one would need reports of some kind which actually indicated that some deaths actually resulted directly or indirectly from SHS. What and where is that evidence? But it is also reasonable to say that, in a matter of such importance (involving the passing of laws), ACTUAL DEATHS CAUSED BY SHS MUST HAVE BEEN RECORDED. As an example of what I mean, let us think of a war such as the Crimean war. It has been said that far more soldiers in that war were killed by infections than were killed by bullets. In that case, it is quite easy to say which soldiers were killed by bullets (and the aftermath of being hit by a bullet) as compared with those who became ill and died when not involved in fisticuffs.
Without actual evidence of a person being killed by SHS, you cannot possibly create an estimate.
Another most odd feature of this report is the list of contributors.
Deborah Arnott, Chief executive, Action on Smoking and Health, London.
Martin Dockrell, Director of research and policy, Action on Smoking and Health, London.
There are other suspect names, but at least they are from universities. But you might reasonably ask what a person like Arnott has to contribute to a supposedly factual report about SHS and children? She is a propagandist and knows nothing at all about the facts. What did she contribute? Maybe she (and her mates) contributed to the emotional wording.
Finally, tonight, I shall quote in full the Foreword by the former Chief Medical Officer. You know who. I’m talking about the obese lump of flesh known as SIR Liam Donaldson. Wikipedia has lots of pictures of him (no doubt published by Tobacco Control) as a young, handsome man. How did he become a fat slob? Maybe he stuffed his face with Big Macs and Booze.
“I welcome this report from the Royal College of Physicians. The report quantifies the effects of second-hand smoke on children’s health, and the related costs, and identifies ways in which smoke-free legislation could be improved to afford greater protection to children. Most importantly, it calls for a radical rethink of the acceptability of smoking anywhere in the presence of
children. One of the biggest impacts of smoking around children is that adult smokers can be seen as role models, increasing the likelihood that the child will, in due course, also become a regular smoker. Preventing this means that adults take responsibility to stop smoking in front of their children at home, or in places where children may see them smoke. Success will demand far more radical approaches to tobacco prevention, particularly in terms of price, mass media campaigns, and the consideration of
generic packaging, and wider smoke-free public policy covering cars, entrances to public buildings, parks, and other outdoor places frequented by children. Protecting children is a health priority. Adult smoking behaviour must radically change to achieve that. This report identifies the reasons why, and what should be done to achieve it. The Government continues to implement strong measures and policies to protect children from second-hand smoke, as featured in the new tobacco control strategy for England, A smokefree future,* published earlier this year.
In my 2002 annual report, I highlighted children’s special vulnerability to second-hand smoke, owing to their smaller lungs and under developed immune systems, making them more susceptible to respiratory and ear infections triggered by passive smoking. It was in this report that I first called for a smoking ban in all enclosed public places, which became law in 2007, and we must ensure
we keep up the momentum, especially where children are exposed, to continue to reduce the harm of tobacco use in our communities, and create a truly smokefree future.
March 2010 Sir Liam Donaldson.
Chief Medical Officer.”
In other words, the NEW ARISTOCRATS concocted the whole thing from beginning to end.
This has come from Dr Seigel’s blog “The Real story”:
Dr Seigel was an archbishop of Tobacco Control until he was excommunicated. He is still anti-tobacco but favours harm reduction rather than persecution.
His slant on this story is that Governments (States in the USA) should not use tobacco duties to finance their budgets, but, naturally, he does not say where replacement funds might come from. I suggested in a comment that the solution was simple – put up the taxes which non-smokers pay.
But the matter is not quite as simple as Dr Seigel makes out. It seems that the French Gov have increased duty by about 6% to take effect on the 1st July. Normally, Tobacco Companies would pass on this increase immediately. That’s how duty works , since duty is levied on top of the manufacturer’s prices, although, of course, TobComs may absorb the increase if they wish to. So it seems that the DUTY increase will go ahead as planned, but the TobComs have agreed to hold their equivalent increase for three months. The reports say that the French Gov is worried about the fall in revenue from reducing tobacco sales, and hopes that the delay of three months will avoid the possibility of many smokers saying, “That’s it! No more tobacco for me!” Or, what is more likely, an increase in purchasing via ‘white van man’ (much easier to get supplies in France since no significant border controls). In other words, the French Gov want the TobComs to introduce the price increases slowly.
You might say, “What a cheek! First they say that they are increasing tobacco prices to force the poor to stop smoking, and then they say that they want people to carry on smoking!” AND YOU WOULD BE RIGHT! Look at this graph:
The second graph shows the average price of a packet of cigs. I wonder if the connection between the big jump in prices in 2002/3 and the big reduction in sales caused the French Gov to take fright about then? How much more should they take fright now in the midst of a severe recession?
The first graph is sales of cigs in ‘millions of units’. Note how demand has held steady for eight years. But then note the sudden drop in demand in 2012, even though price increases have been just as gradual as in previous years. It seems that this downward trend in sales has continued lately.
It seems that the French Zealots are mighty pleased about this sudden fall in demand and want even further swingeing increases in prices! I have no doubt in my own mind that these Zealot demands are led by well-paid, comfortably-off Doctors and EU Aristocrats.
Panic time for the French Government! What if the fall in heavily taxed ‘legit’ cigs continues or even escalates?
To make matters worse, as I said earlier, the tobacconists are up in arms. Demonstrations are in the offing. (Would that our publicans had had the same nous and courage!) You see, these tobacconists fulfil many of the functions of our corner shops. In many French villages (and there are still a lot of French villages), they are the only surviving shops/bars. If they go ……
Meanwhile, in Brussels, at the Ecig Workshop of the EU members of parliament, an Italian representative said that Italy was intending to tax ecigs because of the fall in tobacco sales (same thing about ‘white van man’ applies there). I find it difficult to think of anything less rational. Ecigs are NOT tobacco. You might as well pick on pens and pencils to levy duty on. Also, of course, if you really want to reduce tobacco consumption, you will encourage the use of ecigs as an alternative to cigarettes.
Panic time also for the Italian Government.
And what does the EU want to do? It wants ecigs to be regulated as medicines! It wants ecigs to be sold only as medicines unless they contain not more than 2% nicotine. Now, everyone-who-knows says that 2% nicotine is not enough to satisfy the nicotine ‘addiction’. At such a low level, smokers will not stop smoking cigs. But the EU wants to spend years fiddling and faffing over ‘safety’. For heavens sake! An ecig is a small, but quite strong, metal tube enclosing a small battery and a minute electric filament to create heat. The juices contain only ‘traces’ (meaning unmeasurably small amounts) of nitrosamines and such. What is there not to be ‘safe’, as we reasonably understand the word? Ecigs are not bombs.
So it looks as though Governments are beginning to understand just a little how damaging the whole idea of Tobacco Control is – and how expensive it is.
This takes me, briefly, to my idea of macro-economics (which is similar to Frank Davis’s (see sidebar) idea of ‘Idle Time’). It works like this:
Initially, every human being has to work all day long to gather enough food and water to survive. Humans live in naturally formed caves. They spend most of the day foraging. Eventually, by good luck, someone finds a source of food which is easy to collect, so much so that one person can collect enough food for all. That frees up the time of others, who can build shelters which are portable, like wigwams. No longer is the tribe anchored in one place. Thus it becomes possible for some of the tribe to explore further afield.
And so it goes on, generation after generation. People discover how to make clothes out of plant fibres, rather than animal hides. A few people can make all the clothes that the tribe needs. More people are freed from hunting.
And so we arrive at a point where water can be piped to peoples houses and sewage can be washed away at a stroke. Coal replaces peat and wood, then gas replaces coal, then atomic energy replaces gas. All the time, more and more people gain time to innovate.
But there arrives a point where a very few people get upset. These people just happen to be the local witch doctors. They complain about the fact that everyone seems to be living longer and longer, but they are dying eventually, which is not right, because they could live even longer, if they did not commit sins. And so they set about DESTROYING those things which they consider to be sinful. These things are mainly things which the poor people make and enjoy.
The KING, who lives in the lap of luxury, believes the witch doctors because he thinks that they can cast spells. He passes laws which enable the witch doctors to destroy even more. The piping of water to people’s homes (and to businesses) is DESTROYED because the walking to streams and the carrying of water butts IS GOOD EXERCISE! All fires are banned because of smoke and hearths broken up. The King applauds the assurances from the witch doctors that his subjects are getting fitter and fitter.
But then the King notices that his granaries and his wine cellars are not as full as they used to be, but the witch doctors assure him that all will be well IN THIRTY YEARS TIME. The King becomes a bit suspicious, especially as his wine cellar becomes more and more depleted. He starts asking other people what they think about the witch doctors, but the witch doctors are prepared. THEY BUMP THE KING OFF, and ‘anoint’ a new King. After a while, they create their own Union in Europe, and replace the King entirely.
I think that I got carried away a bit……
I am ashamed! But I swore when I began to describe what I thought was the best way to grow and cure tobacco plants in our climate that I would be honest. And so I must reveal these pictures:
How pathetic! But I have only myself to blame. Planting out in April, no matter how nice the weather may be at the time, is crazy.
But I took on J Brown’s tip. Yesterday, I lifted all the plants one at a time, and deepened the holes. I then replaced the plants so that they were buried ‘right up to their necks’ – that is, right up to the bottom of the green leaves (most of the early leaves had turned yellow and were dead for all intents and purposes). But when I dug the plantlets out, I noticed that, apart from a couple which were all but dead, the rooting system was still very much intact. The exposed roots were white and plentiful, so all is not lost. The idea of burying the plants deeper, by the way, is because there are little hairs on the stalk which will grow into roots if they are below ground.
There were a few of the plants which I did not dig out and re-plant. These were the ones which only had a short bare stalk. But I remember reading something in ‘Buffalo Bird Woman’s’ description of the cultivation of tobacco plants by her father when she was a child. She was what we used to call ‘A Red Indian’. One cannot be sure when these reminiscences were written, but they were published by the University of Minnesota in 1917.
She describes events which must have occurred around 1850. If anyone wants to read about Buffalo Bird Woman’s recollections about ‘her garden’ and the methods of native Americans of that era, here is the URL:
The specific reason that I mention it is that there has been something in my mind ever since I read her description of tobacco growing (In Chapter XIII. It concerns ‘heaping up soil around the plants’):
“The earth about each plant was hilled up about it with a buffalo rib, into a little hill like a corn hill“
“I have said that the weak plants were culled out by hand, and that the strong plants were hilled up with a buffalo rib.“
I was intrigued by the ‘hilling up’, and so, instead of digging up, I have ‘hilled up’ the soil around the stalk instead. I should imagine that it will have the same effect of encouraging the growth of roots from the stalk.
One might as well amuse oneself as not.
I hope that the plants will start to thrive. One must be patient. But I have my ‘reserve bank’ of seedlings and Danny, a commenter who lives quite close to me, has offered me some plants which are surplus to his requirements.
Perhaps it is necessary to go through various trials and tribulations to arrive at some sort of ‘best practice’, but it is a damned nuisance.
By the way, many thanks to Rose for the information about Buffalo Bird Woman.
I wrote a post a couple of days ago about the demise of Tobacco Control in this country (especially that advertising and script-writing organisation known as ASH). In the comments, I referred to the above which I had just read about.
We know that Plain Packaging has been dropped (for the time being at least) and that ASH ET AL were persuaded not to pursue banning smoking in cars. At the moment, therefore, TC seem to have nowhere to go since the Framework Convention demands for legislation have been all but completed in the UK (apart from PP). All the surveys and studies about PP have been done. All that ASH can do is squeal.
BUT, via Frank Davis (see sidebar) I came across a reference to the above. Frank linked to:
where Josie Appleton commented on the little observed provision in the Queen’s Speech that legislation would be put forward to deal with anti-social behaviour. Previous legislation already exists, but this new legislation ‘improves’ it apparently.
In the Spiked article, Josie A brings to our attention the fact that this piece of legislation is so loosely drafted that a local authority could declare ALMOST ANYTHING to be anti-social. Further, not only will the local authority be able to STOP you doing something, but could also DIRECT you to do something.
Actually, from our point of view, the second provision is not such a bother. In reality, as I read it, the idea is to enable local authorities to make people clear up any mess they make, and, if they don’t, to force them to pay for the clearing-up if the LA do it.
For us, as regards smoking bans, it is the first part. LAs can declare ALMOST ANYTHING to be anti-social in public ‘spaces’ . Note the change from public ‘places’. It was that little variation which bothered me.
But Frank J, in a comment, said that the Bill said that such laws would would need to be confirmed by court action, so that wasn’t so bad.
I was confused by that because Josie A was quite clear that LAs had the power, and she said nothing about court orders. Fortunately, she gave the URL for the actual text of the draft Bill, which is:
UPDATE 3.30pm 19th:
Here is a better version of the text. It is the version of the actual Bill submitted to Parliament. It is easier to ‘select’ sections of the Bill to view:
Now….. I can quite understand how Frank came to believe that court orders would be required. When you first start to read the actual text, this is what you find:
INJUNCTIONS TO PREVENT NUISANCE AND ANNOYANCE.
“A court may grant an injunction under this Section…….” I would copy and paste more of it, but the ability to do seems to be blocked).
The text in that Section goes on and on about getting court order, etc, etc.
Because of the usual legalistic mumbo-jumbo, it is easy think that court orders are require for everything. But that is only Part 1! You need to read on until you come to Part 4 – COMMUNITY PROTECTION. Here things change dramatically.
FOR SOME REASON, THE ABILITY TO COPY AND PASTE SEEMS TO BE BLOCKED. THAT IS NOT SOMETHING THAT I HAVE COME
ACROSS IN GOVERNMENT DOCUMENTS BEFORE.
So I’ll have to type bits out. The best thing to do is go see for yourself.
HANG ON. I’VE FOUND A WAY!
Chapter 1 of Part 4 concerns ‘Community Protection Notices’.
Power to issue notices
(1)An authorised person may issue a community protection notice to an individual aged 16 or over, or a body, if satisfied on reasonable grounds that—
(a)the conduct of the individual or body is having a detrimental effect, of a persistent or continuing nature, on the quality of life of those in the locality, and
(b)the conduct is unreasonable.
(2)In subsection (1) “authorised person” means a person on whom section 50 (or an enactment amended by that section) confers power to issue community protection notices.
So we go to section 50 to see who is an authorised person and we find:
(1)A community protection notice or a fixed penalty notice may be issued by—
(c)a person designated by the relevant local authority for the purposes of this section.
(2)For a community protection notice, “the relevant local authority” means the local authority (or, as the case may be, any of the local authorities) within whose area the conduct specified in the notice has, according to the notice, been taking place.
So we see that, as far as ‘Community Protection Notices’ is concerned, NO COURT ORDERS ARE REQUIRED.
But for what we want to know about, we must go to Chapter 2 of Part 4:
Public spaces protection orders.
Public spaces protection orders.
55 Power to make orders.
(1)A local authority may make a public spaces protection order if satisfied on
reasonable grounds that two conditions are met.
(2)The first condition is that—
(a)activities carried on in a public place within the authority’s area have had a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality, or
(b)it is likely that activities will be carried on in a public place within that area and that they will have such an effect.
(3)The second condition is that the effect, or likely effect, of the activities—
(a)is, or is likely to be, of a persistent or continuing nature,
(b)is, or is likely to be, such as to make the activities unreasonable, and
(c)justifies the restrictions imposed by the notice.
(4)A public spaces protection order is an order that identifies the public place referred to in subsection (2) (“the restricted area”) and—
(a)prohibits specified things being done in the restricted area,
(b)requires specified things to be done by persons carrying on specified activities in that area, or
(c)does both of those things.
(5)The only prohibitions or requirements that may be imposed are ones that are reasonable to impose in order—
(a)to prevent the detrimental effect referred to in subsection (2) from continuing, occurring or recurring, or
(b)to reduce that detrimental effect or to reduce the risk of its continuance, occurrence or recurrence.
What is the big worry here? Is in not obvious? HAVE TOBACCO CONTROL HAD ANY HAND IN CREATING THIS PROPOSED LEGISLATION? I would be extremely surprised to find that they had not.
You can see it, can’t you? Dozens of Zealots all preparing letters to the Council and all complaining about how annoying the tobacco smoke in the Town Hall Square is. You can see similar complaints about smoking at events held in the open air. Knowing what we know about Wigan Council’s capitulation to the psychopaths in the ‘Wellbeing’ Dept over the use of ecigs, it is hardly likely that the Zealots will not use these provisions to their advantage.
So this Bill is a BIG, BIG worry. What is even more bothersome is that THIS BILL HAS ALREADY HAD ITS FIRST READING! Traditionally, Bills are not questioned on the first reading. In effect, the first reading us just an ‘introduction’ of the Bill. The question which occurs to me is, “Are MPs (and especially Ministers) aware of the insidiousness of this Bill?” In my opinion, just as a citizen, it is far, far too open to abuse by groups of Zealots of all kinds. The conditions required for a local authority to issue these ‘protection orders’ must be much more clearly defined. For a start, if Public PLACES are to be protected, the Bill should be about protecting BUILDINGS, GRASS, PATHS, ETC against vandalism and such, and not about persecuting people. As regards ‘activities’, they come under Chapter 1, unless those activities are in the nature graffiti and such.
There seems to me to be an overlap between Chapter 1 and Chapter 2. ‘COMMUNITY’ protection should be about protecting THE PEOPLE’; ‘SPACES’ protection should be about protecting ‘THINGS’.
I cocked up big-time when I planted out my beautiful plantlets in the middle of April. Idiot!! My only excuse was that the plantlets were growing so fast that they were getting ‘leggy’ – meaning that the stalks were growing long and thin. I’ve been searching around on the net today to see if I could find any advice about what to do if your plantlets are growing too fast. Believe me, that is not easy to find. Most queries addressed on the web concern slow growth and not rapid growth. I did find what I was looking for eventually – sort of. The suggestions were on a tomato growing site.
It seems that the ‘legginess’ (or ‘stretching’, as it is described) is due to the plantlets seeking light. The best plan, apparently, is to take them away from light. One suggestion was to put them in a garage or similar. Not all the time, of course, but for periods. A ploy to slow the growth might be to cool the roots down by putting the pots in a cooler place. I thought of that myself when it was too late, but I’m pleased to see the idea confirmed.
So the situation is this. Two of the outdoor plants are definitely dead and half a dozen are looking very weak. I am not sure to what extent the roots of ALL the plants have been damaged. The plants may grow poorly and be stunted. On the 9th, I said that I might start off some more seeds. I did so five days ago and they have germinated. I sowed them straight into a dozen 2″ pots which I put into the propagator having removed the seed tray. I covered them with the propagator lid. There are five or six seedlings growing in each pot. They are my ‘reserve bank’. They will take about six weeks to get to a decent size, which should be enough time to see how the plants outside progress. It it looks as though the plants outside are in trouble, then I’ll transplant the seedlings into individual plots.
Never say die….!
A bit of good news. One of the indoor bucketed plants is developing flower buds. All being well, I should get loads of seeds from that one plant alone.
At the end of yesterday’s post about the EU workshop meeting, I mentioned that one of the panel at the meeting said that the UK has almost completely put into effect the provisions of the Framework convention on Tobacco Control. This is true. As far as I can see, the only part of the provisions which has not had a law enacted is the ‘plain packaging’ provision. Tobacco Companies have been rendered voiceless, tobacco advertising has been stopped, tobacco promotion has been stopped, smoking has been stopped in work-places and enclosed ‘public’ places. I suppose that there is still ‘work to be done’ on the ingredients, but that is not something for ASH to be involved with. There are noises in the FCTC about ‘education’, but that has nothing to do with ASH. Even there, all the studies etc have been done over and over again. The Public know everything that there is to know.
TC failed to persuade the UK Government to enact ‘plain packaging’ provisions, but all the necessary (fake) surveys and (junk) studies have been done. Sure, ASH can pester MPs, but there is nothing else that they can do.
The same also applies to the Tobacco Control Depts in CRUK, BHF, etc. There is nothing more that they can do. As far as the FCTC is concerned, Tobacco Control Departments are now defunct. Let us bear in mind that banning smoking in cars is not a provision of the FCTC, nor is the ‘protection of children’. In many parts of the world, the protection of children is very much a family matter which strong religions like Islam would guard with great vigour. I find it very sad that the Christian religion has turned out to be so horribly weak regarding parents and children.
One wonders why it is taking so long for the Chief Medical Officer and the CEO of Public Health England to see that there is no point in prolonging ASH further as a contributor to improvements in ‘public health’. What have they to offer? More press releases? More propaganda? More persecution of PETS (People who Enjoy Tobacco)?
There really is no point in continuing to fund these groups. They have fulfilled their purpose as traitors who work for the UN, the WHO and the EU and as salesmen for Big Pharm. I doubt that Big Pharm will want to continue to fund them since are no longer able to produce results in the sale of cessation products. In fact ASH has become a liability, since it makes Big Pharm a laughing stock. Some local authorities are still being suckered for funds as is the national lottery, but I feel sure that, eventually, PICKLES MP, the local government minister will sort them out. I suspect that the Charities Commission will, eventually, sort out the national lottery.
I like having little logical thoughts.
I am not sure how serious the new CEO of Public Health England was when he said that social exclusion was as bad as smoking 15 cigs per day. Let us just thing about that. Suppose that a non-smoker is socially excluded. The effects would be as bad as smoking 15 cigs per day, and that person would therefore die prematurely. Suppose that a smoker of 15 cigs per day was NOT socially excluded? Then the social INCLUSION would counteract the smoking of 15 cigs per day so that the effect of both taken together would be neutral. Thus, smoking 15 cigs per day is harmless, provided that the person is socially active. The same also applies to the effects of shift-work. There are statistics which show that working on shifts is likely to produce heart disease and that shift workers have a 40% (?) greater chance of suffering heart problems. Thus, for a shift-worker, smoking 15 cigs a day would be advantageous.
Zealots would say, “NO! NO! You are wrong! Social exclusion is bad. Smoking 15 cigs a day is bad. You must add the two together and produce DOUBLE bad” Clever, but untrue. The reason is that social inclusion is not neutral. Social INclusion is GOOD. It is a PLUS for the general health of a person. We THRIVE from social INclusion. We SUFFER from social EXclusion. Smoking 15 cigs a day is BAD. Not smoking is NEUTRAL. You cannot say that not smoking and social inclusion is double good, since not smoking is neutral. The logic revolves around the idea that there is nothing less than zero.
Tobacco Control in the UK will huff and puff for a while as yet. It is bound to be so since they still have money to spend. But the funding cannot go on since they have nothing further of any value to add. It is a little like having some sort of flooding problem. Once the flooding problem is sorted out, there is nothing more to be done, except to monitor the flood defences. You do not need to fund the construction of flood defences after the constructions have been completed.
As we have seen, there will be fiddling and faffing with bans in parks and bans of ecigs. But these matters are just silly.
Tobacco Control is defunct.
Dick Puddlecote drew attention to a live broadcast of the above meeting. It was too late for me to pick up the broadcast and so I looked for a recording. I could not find one, but I am on DP’s list of contacts via Disqus and I received an email which pointed to a You Tube recording published by Vaping World. The video (or its URL at any rate) is below.
The meeting was several hours long, so it takes an effort to watch the whole thing. If you have time, it is worth watching if only to see (or rather, hear) the junk ‘science’ being trumpeted. I speak particularly about the unwarranted acceptance of the idea that smoking causes untold amounts of illness and death. It is also worth observing the presence of a representative of the WHO. He turns out to be a Zealot of the worst kind – one who has no interest whatsoever in the happiness of individuals but only in forcing them to give up tobacco. All the panel of ‘experts’ are much the same. None of them give any thought whatsoever to pleasure. They talk only of addiction.
Essentially, the EU wants to regulate ecigs as though they were medicines, unless they contain less than 2% nicotine. But they would be useless at that level since they would not satisfy the ‘craving’ for nicotine. They say that they have no intention of banning ecigs, but many people say that making ecigs with a level of nicotine over 2% medicines would be an effective ban because of the cost and difficulties of getting licences and because of the limiting of availability.
Here is the URL: [Be warned - there are lots of 'breaks' in the video - wait until it resumes] For those who have neither the patience or the time to watch the whole thing, here are a few times in the video which, from my own point of view, I found particularly interesting:
10.18……..Start of meeting. My! what a noisy woman the chairperson is!
14.50…….Deputy commissioner (?). Listen to his speech. Full of junk. ABSOLUTELY not intended to ban!
28.45…….WHO guy. Holy Zealot of the worst kind. Ecigs must be regulated out of existence because kids may love them. Passive vaping. Brazil total ban great.
44.10…..Questions. WHO guy says that regs absolutely necessary because ecigs look like cigs. Interestingly, at about 21.10, a picture of an ecig appears on the screen behind the rostrum – it looks nothing like a cig. One MEP says that there are studies showing that ecigs are not a ‘gateway’ to smoking.
1.05.20… Panel changed to REGULATORS (Government persons who make regulations).
1.07.15…UK guy not very enthusiastic. At 1.35.25 mentions ‘level playing field’ and ‘medicines framework’ best.
1.21.10… PIC of ecig on screen – looks nothing like a cig.
1.43.40…. Questions. MUST LISTEN to Italian scientist. Anti-tobacco but realist about ecigs.
1.58.25…Change of panel to doctors and scientists. Woman in black and white dress junk science re ingredients of ecig liquid.
2.05.40…REAL scientist from Geneva Uni. Talks about addiction. Denies second-hand vapour harm. Mentions addiction to nicotine gum! Says that Big Pharm want control.
2.20.15… Questions. Worth listening to.
2.23.40…Noisy chairperson sounds off about lobbying by ecig firms. Geneva scientist responds – ecigs not medicine – important to ensure widespread availability.
2.29.45…CONSUMER VOICE. Someone from the German Ecig Users Assn is permitted to address the workshop. Emphatic about ecigs being for pleasure and as an alternative to smoking and not as a remedy. a MUST WATCH. Note the body language of the woman in a black and white dress to the right of the speaker. I wonder what she was thinking about? Whatever it was, it is pretty clear that what he was saying was OF NO SIGNIFICANCE as far as the ‘experts’ were concerned.
If you watch the whole thing, you can see with clarity what is wrong with the EU. In the first place, there is far too cosy a relationship with the WHO and the UN. The EU does not exist to do the bidding of the UN and the WHO – or the World Bank and the IMF, for that matter. The stench of collusion and corruption is undeniable. This is clear from the exaggerations of the ‘experts’.
At one point, in response to a question/comment from the floor, the woman dressed in a black and white dress let the cat out of the bag. She said (possibly inadvertently) that the UK had almost totally implemented the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. What then is the point of continuing to fund ASH ET AL?
Enjoy the video if you can….
That thought only struck me tonight.
I was reading Jay’s blog, Nannying Tyrants (see sidebar), about the way in which Tobacco Tactics (the Bath Uni blog which claims to reveal the iniquities of ‘tobacco company stooges’, like Frank Davis, Dick Puddlecote, etc) has falsified its statistics to suggest that it is receiving hundreds of thousands of ‘visits’ and that this reveals how popular the blog is. Considering that the Bath Uni must have really good IT technicians, one would have thought that the TC Bigots would have checked before revealing their ignorance. You see, they claimed over a million ‘hits’ and thereby construed over a million ‘views’. The fact is that a ‘hit’ is just (something like) an exchange of contacts between one internet site and another. Thus, when a person ‘views’ a page on TT, it is possible for dozens of ‘hits’ to be registered as the TT page is loading because different elements of the page are loaded separately. One commenter revealed that the number of ‘views’ was about 57,000. For heavens sake! – This little blog alone has had 68,000 view in the twelve months or so of its existence! And that is nothing. Also, TT confuses viewing with popularity. How silly!
I know little about psychology, but I have read from time to time about the idea of ‘inferiority complex’. There was a time when we took these ideas rather seriously, but that was before we came to understand that ‘experts’ know bugger-all. But let us run with it.
It was understood that people with an ‘inferiority complex’ tended to brag a lot. It was said that these people feel insecure and inadequate, and so they compensate by grasping straws and exaggerating their achievements in conversations – this to gain complements from their peers, and thus buttress them. I think that the idea was that psychologists could recognise this trend and, perhaps, get to the root of the insecurity and feeling of inferiority and correct it.
But could that apply to “INDUSTRIES”? Well, Yes – if that ‘Industry’ has no physical existence. The Tobacco Control Industry is a real industry since it employs a lot of people who produce things like press releases, but it has no physical existence. Also, it is very profitable to the individuals involved, either directly or indirectly or fraudulently (fraudulently meaning semi-bribes like paid-for trips to exotic places, funding of meetings, shares in pharma companies, salaries, etc. You see, in this sort of Industry, any ‘bribe’ which benefits all, benefits each).
The bragging of TC about the stats of the TobaccoTactics blog must be a prime example of a collective inferiority complex. But as Jay said when I mentioned it, it must always have been so. Tobacco Control must always have been aware that their basic premise, being The Dolls Doctor Study, was flawed in many ways. One of the principle flaws of the Doctors Study was that it took no account of the LOCATION of the doctors. As I understand it, there is no doubt that smokers who live in country areas, all things being equal, suffer considerably less lung cancer and heart problems. But that is not all. The Zealots must also be aware that they are LYING when they say that banning smoking ‘in places where people ordinarily smoke’ is ‘for the children‘ . When you LIE, you automatically BECOME inferior – and you know it. The only way out, when your lies are revealed, is bluster. And ‘bluster’ (bragging) is what we are seeing more and more of.
What is most likely to happen is not a gradual diminution of Tobacco Control but a complete collapse. It is no accident that, in the EU, there is a Department (for lack of a better word) which is called ‘Environment and Health’. Erm … What is the DIRECT connection between Global Warming and the Health of Individuals? It is no accident that these two separate things are connected since they are linked to the UN. Thus, it is clear that the EU has more ‘loyalty’ to the UN than to the People of Europe.
We should be aware that every ASH ET AL survey (often via YouGov, whose owner is an ASH trustee) is just bragging. These surveys are a way for ASH to circumvent the fact that they have no substantial proof of anything they say. They rely TOTALLY upon ADVERTISING LIES. I would be interested to know whether it is true that ASH pay newspapers to publish their press releases, either directly or indirectly.
Finally, it seems to me that they are right to have an inferiority complex because they ARE inferior. This has become obvious as a result of the convulsions of Tobacco Control over ecigs. I have been watching the EU Workshop discussions about regulating ecigs tonight. I have not yet finished watching because it is about an hour long. Apparently, the Chairman Zealot was discomfited by the fact that her carefully orchestrated procession of Zealots was countered by realists. Tobacco Control Zealots ARE inferior because they know nothing and rely entirely upon rumours.
I have been at a bit of a loose end today. The weather hereabouts has been foul – wet, windy and cold. No chance of beavering about it the garden. The whole of Europe seems to be bathed in sunshine – apart from us. I blame Cameron, Clegg and Milliband. They are so useless that they cannot even get the weather right.
There is more to that last sentence than meets the eye, if you read a few newspaper articles and the comments thereto. Since I was at a loose end, I have read quite a few on-line newspapers, being the Telegraph, the Mail, the Mirror and the Sun. A really odd article appeared in the the Mail on Line:
“Fury at smoking breath test for all mothers-to-be as it is revealed one in three still light up during pregnancy”
yelled the Mail. It does not say who might have been furious – Oh, wait, the article seems to have been updated. The College of Midwives is furious as is ………… MUMSNET!!!!!
The articles STATES that pregnant women WILL be tested for CO by midwives. The article suggests that NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) HAS ORDERED midwives to test pregnant women for CO as an indication of whether they are smoking or not. Of course, NICE has no such authority. The whole thing is just another example of Tobacco Control spin.
But the important thing is the comments. How can it be that there are so many mentally ill, emotionally-driven people in the world? So many people who cannot distinguish between REAL harm and IMAGINED harm. It really is odd. In some ways, it enables one to sympathise with Cameron and co – they have to win votes, and the only way to do it is to please these horribly emotional people. And is that not entirely the purpose of propaganda? – To play on the emotions? But, to be fair, there has also been a lot of support expressed for ‘freedom to choose’ in the sense that it is the mother’s decision, and that the so-called harm is illusory.
However, more fun was to be had on the Telegraph about the EU. Some ‘senior politicians’ (whatever that may mean) have been saying that they would vote to leave the EU if a vote was taken today (which is a lovely get-out since it does not commit to tomorrow). It is odd that the vast majority of commenters see the question in black and white – either ‘in’ or ‘out’. Personally, I see it as a question of ‘mission creep’. I suggested that the real problem was that the EU was meddling in national affairs and that it had become too big, too bureaucratic and too corrupt, and that it needed to be cleaned up and de-sized and that lots of ‘competences’ should be withdrawn (such as health and climate control). The UK should DEMAND reforms of this nature and not fiddle about with budgets. If the EU refuses, then pull out. Would the UK lose trade and influence? One commenter made a very sensible comment. He said that the UK is STILL by far the strongest nation in the EU militarily, and that the EU would hate the idea of losing the UK ‘s military strength. There is a lot to be said for that argument.
Sometimes I think that the whole thing is just a huge game of snakes and ladders. The question is – does the game have a final square?