The World Health Organisation

I’ve been digging around in the WHO website. I was vaguely prompted to do so by the ‘advice’ which issued from that august institution that people should not use ecigs but use approved cessation devices. I trust that readers will notice the assumption which is implied in the last few words of that sentence – “should not use ecigs but use approved cessation devices“. Yes – the assumption is that people use ecigs ONLY for smoking cessation purposes. But we all know that vapers take up ecigs for a variety of reasons, such as, a) cost of tobacco, b) avoidance of smoking bans, c) pleasure, and, yes, d) fear of health consequences.

I was tooting around to see if I could find out what committee in particular actually issues such statements and who the members might be. But it is very difficult. In the first place, the WHO is a very big organisation with loads and loads of interconnected bodies. But it does not seem to have a lot of permanent committees. It seems to operate by ‘projects’ which involve temporary groupings which set up projects and then virtually disband. From then on, the WHO ‘manages’ the project and makes reports in the form of publications.

So far, I’ve only come across one permanent committee, which is “The WHO Executive Board”. Even that meets only twice a year – a main meeting in January and a short meeting just after the WHO Assembly, which meets in May. There are 34 members of the board and states take turns in nominating members. Each member serves for three year. As far as I can see, the system involves one third of the members resigning each year, which is the reason for 34 members – one permanent (?) chairman and 33 others, retiring 11 each year. There is a list of the members, who are all ministers for health in their own countries or equivalent.

The main person is the Chairman, who, at this time, is:

Professor Jane Halton PSM.
Australia Government Department of Health and Ageing.

I wouldn’t normally bother to give the CV of such a person, but, in this case, I shall because she seems to have a finger in every pie going:

Jane Halton has been Secretary of the Australian Department of Health and Ageing, responsible for Australia’s national health system, since 2002.

Jane has had an active leadership role in global health diplomacy and the World Health Organization over this period, including as:

  • a Western Pacific Region member of the WHO Executive Board from 2004 to 2007, with a further three year period as a member commencing in May 2012.
  • President of the World Health Assembly in 2007.
  • Vice-Chairman of the Executive Board from 2005 to 2006.
  • Chairman of the WHO Programme, Budget and Administration Committee from 2005 to 2007.
  • Chair of the Intergovernmental Meeting on Pandemic Influenza Preparedness: Sharing of influenza viruses and access to vaccines and other benefits from 2007 to 2009.

Jane holds an honours degree in psychology from the Australian National University, is a fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and an honourary fellow of the Australian College of Health Service Executives. She holds the position of Adjunct Professor at the University of Sydney and Adjunct Professor at the University of Canberra. She was awarded the Public Service Medal in 2002, and the Centenary Medal in 2003. In 2011, she was awarded the degree of Doctor of Letters Honoris Causa by the University of New South Wales.

Jane is also Chair of the OECD’s Health Committee and has been a member of the board of the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation since 2007. She was awarded the Geneva Forum for Health Award in 2013 for her contribution to heath systems and innovation in tobacco control.

Ah! There’s the main qualification! She has been particularly involved in inventing new forms of torture for the New Inquisition to use on smokers. Note her qualification for that job – “honours degree in psychology


I started to write the above about 11pm. It is now 1am and I have been digging deeper and deeper. Some slightly whiffy poo pongs are beginning to emerge. What I’m going to try to do is set up a series of links which will be easy to follow to get to the correct pages (if I can retrace my steps!), but not tonight.

I have found a set of pages about “the Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health cluster at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland”. As part of that group, there is:

WHO Tobacco Free Initiative – management team

I clicked on the first name to find out something about that person. Here is what I found:

Dr Douglas William Bettcher is the Director the Department for Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases, World Health Organization (WHO), Geneva, Switzerland. He was previously the Director of WHO’s Tobacco Free Initiative Department, which has now become an integral programme within the new Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases Department.

He has a multidisciplinary background and holds a PhD in International Relations and a Graduate Diploma in World Politics, both from the London School of Economics and Political Science; a Master’s of Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine; and a Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Alberta, Canada. In addition, he sits on the Editorial Board of the scientific journal Bulletin of the World Health Organization and has served as vice-chair of the public health interest group of the American Society of International Law and as a member of the Editorial Board of the journal Global Governance.

Dr Bettcher has written widely on several topics, including globalization and health, foreign policy and health security, international law and public health, noncommunicable diseases prevention and control, tobacco control, and trade and other health policy issues.

He has international and country-level experience (in both developing and developed countries) in tobacco control, and was WHO’s principal focal point for providing Secretariat support for the negotiation of WHO’s first treaty, the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

Dr Bettcher is actively involved with WHO’s work in the implementation of the Political Declaration of the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on the Prevention and Control of NCDs, New York, 2011. Furthermore, Dr Bettcher is responsible for coordinating WHO’s work for the Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases, and in this capacity provides global leadership for the implementation of the prevention component of the Political declaration of the High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases. Dr Bettcher’s current portfolio includes oversight for WHO’s work on NCD risk factor prevention (including tobacco use, diet and physical inactivity), health promotion, and NCD risk factor surveillance.

In the area of tobacco control, Dr Bettcher is responsible for coordinating the WHO’s work with the Convention Secretariat to the WHO FCTC to support the comprehensive implementation of the WHO FCTC; for the scaling up of WHO’s country-level tobacco control work, as one of the five partners in the Bloomberg Initiative for Reducing Tobacco Use, and for overseeing the implementation of the WHO project to establish a capacity building resource center for tobacco control in Africa, which is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Finally, he has also worked in the areas of clinical medicine, public health and, international health policy in a number of countries, notably in developing countries, including Ethiopia and Jamaica.

I wasn’t going to copy the whole of his CV until I saw the penultimate paragraph.


Heavens! It gets worse and worse. Here are a selection of quotes from the CVs of the others:


During 1986-1990, he worked for the District of Columbia’s Commission of Public Health as a behavioural change epidemiologist.

In his native Spain, he was Dean of the National School of Public Health and later Director of the Research Institute on Health and Welfare in Madrid.


From 1986 to 1995, he was an epidemiologist in, and later Head of, the Population Health Unit at the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Canberra.


In 1996 she joined to the Office of Smoking and Health at the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, as a post doctoral fellow, working closely with the states and providing technical help on the economics of tobacco control and the impact of increasing tobacco excise taxes on smuggling and states’ revenues. In 1998, she joined to the World Bank in Washington DC to work on the report, “Curbing the Epidemic: governments and the economics of tobacco control”. 


Virginia Arnold joined the WHO Tobacco Free Initiative in 2007 as the Project Officer for the Bloomberg Initiative.

Before joining WHO, she worked at HSBC bank in London, the United Nations in New York and the United Kingdom Foreign Office in Canada.


His main responsibility is the Gates Foundation-funded project for building capacity for tobacco control in WHO’s African region.

From 1991-2004, he worked in various capacities in the Ministry of Finance’s Department of Revenue (Customs and Central Excise), 

An expert in trade, taxes and smuggling, he was invited in 2006 to help WHO develop a template protocol on illicit trade in tobacco products.


An administrative assistant. Probably destined for great things once she gets her various doctorates in behaviour control etc.


Finally for tonight, I found the actual statement from the WHO about ecigs. Here it is:

Questions and answers on electronic cigarettes or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS)

9 July 2013

What are electronic cigarettes?

Electronic cigarettes or ENDS (electronic nicotine delivery systems) are devices whose function is to vaporize and deliver to the lungs of the user a chemical mixture typically composed of nicotine, propylene glycol and other chemicals, although some products claim to contain no nicotine. A number of ENDS are offered in flavours that can be particularly attractive to adolescents. Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) are the most common prototype of ENDS.

Each device contains an electronic vaporization system, rechargeable batteries, electronic controls and cartridges of the liquid that is vaporized. The manufacturers report that the cartridges typically contain between 6 and 24 mg of nicotine, but sometimes can contain more than 100 mg. In the form of tobacco products, nicotine is an addictive chemical that in excessive amounts can be lethal (0.5-1.0 mg per kg of weight of the person).

Most ENDS are shaped to look like their conventional (tobacco) counterparts (e.g. cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, pipes, hookahs or shishas). They are also sometimes made to look like everyday items such as pens and USB memory sticks, for people who wish to use the product without other people noticing.

Are electronic cigarettes (ENDS) safe?

The safety of ENDS has not been scientifically demonstrated.

The potential risks they pose for the health of users remain undetermined. Furthermore, scientific testing indicates that the products vary widely in the amount of nicotine and other chemicals they deliver and there is no way for consumers to find out what is actually delivered by the product they have purchased.

Most ENDS contain large concentrations of propylene glycol, which is a known irritant when inhaled. The testing of some of these products also suggests the presence of other toxic chemicals, aside from nicotine. In addition, use of these products -when they contain nicotine- can pose a risk for nicotine poisoning (i.e. if a child of 30 Kilos of weight swallows the contents of a nicotine cartridge of 24 mg this could cause acute nicotine poisoning that most likely would cause its death) and a risk for addiction to nonsmokers of tobacco products. Nicotine, either inhaled, ingested or in direct contact with the skin, can be particularly hazardous to the health and safety of certain segments of the population, such as children, young people, pregnant women, nursing mothers, people with heart conditions and the elderly. ENDS and their nicotine cartridges and refill accessories must be kept out of the reach of young children at all times in view of the risk of choking or nicotine poisoning.

As ENDS do not generate the smoke that is associated with the combustion of tobacco, their use is commonly believed by consumers to be safer than smoking tobacco. This illusive ‘safety’ of ENDS can be enticing to consumers; however, the chemicals used in electronic cigarettes have not been fully disclosed, and there are no adequate data on their emissions.

Is use of electronic cigarettes (ENDS) an effective method for quitting tobacco smoking?

The efficacy of ENDS for helping people to quit smoking has not been scientifically demonstrated.

ENDS are often touted as tobacco replacements, smoking alternatives or smoking cessation aids. But we know that for smoking cessation products to be most effectively and safely used, they need to be used according to instructions developed for each product through scientific testing. There are no scientifically proven instructions for using ENDS as replacements or to quit smoking. The implied health benefits associated with these claims are unsubstantiated or may be based on inaccurate or misleading information. When ENDS are used as cessations aids, they are intended to deliver nicotine directly to the lungs. None of the approved, regulated cessation aids, such as nicotine patches and chewing-gum, delivers nicotine to the lungs. Therefore, the biological mechanism by which smoking cessation might be achieved by delivery of nicotine to the lungs and its effects are unknown. Delivery to the lung might be dangerous. Therefore, independently of the effects of nicotine, it is of global importance to study lung delivery scientifically.

The dose of delivered nicotine is also unknown. It is suspected that the delivered dose varies notably by product, which contain nicotine in various quantities and concentrations.


Until such time as a given ENDS is deemed safe and effective and of acceptable quality by a competent national regulatory body, consumers should be strongly advised not to use any of these products, including electronic cigarettes.

On the basis of the above, ALL the conspirators in the New, Globalised Inquisition are singing from the same hymn sheet, and all are talking about vague possibilities of risks of risks.



7 Responses to “The World Health Organisation”

  1. Moss Says:

    Junican, couldn’t agree more, and I believe in the “Conclusion,” they bind themselves together with a very condemning question mark!

    PS. I’m not quite sure what brought this to mind, but can you remember the farcical news paper, called ‘Billy’s Weekly Liar?

    • Junican Says:

      I remember the name, but I means nothing to me, to be honest.


      I suspect that Cameron, Clegg and Milliband are way, way out of their depth when dealing with the UN and the EU. This post illustrates the academic forces which have been organised. Not one of the people described could actually themselves enforce what they demand. They depend upon Cameron etc doing the dirty work. What is depressing is that Cameron etc actually do it! Why?

      But there is a very simple answer which could devastate the healthist:

      Split the Health Dept:

      Create two depts:

      a) “Health” – meaning the NHS and actual diseases and disabilities.
      b) “Safety” – meaning control of dangers.

      Sooner or later, politicians must realise that the costs of ‘public health’ are greater than the savings.

  2. michaeljmcfadden Says:

    I found this interesting in the WHO statement:

    “these products -when they contain nicotine- can pose a risk for nicotine poisoning (i.e. if a child of 30 Kilos of weight swallows the contents of a nicotine cartridge of 24 mg this could cause acute nicotine poisoning that most likely would cause its death) ”

    Note this passage from the story intro to “TobakkoNacht — The Antismoking Endgame” as it was originally written in 1997:

    “Unfortunately, standardized USA NoNic cigarettes had never caught on in a big way with the American public. To the small extent that they were sold, they were usually bought by customers who brought them home and spiked them with concentrated nicotine oils smuggled from South America. The number of children who had died as a result of imbibing these concentrated oils, or through smoking homemade cigarettes pumped up to fifty times the normal nicotine level, made Waxham shiver.”

    Eventually we WILL likely see an instance of this kind of thing happening, and the media will totally ignore the fact that meanwhile hundreds or thousands of children will have suffered similar deaths from eating aspirins or drinking sweet-scented suntan lotions or lemon-fresh household cleaners. The deaths from those other “problem products” will simply be ignored though as the Antis focus on the single case arising from e-juice.


    • Junican Says:

      Have there ever been any such deaths, MJM, or are they just a possibility? It is possible that a child could go into your garden and stuff soil into its mouth in great quantities. These things are possible. A child might go to the seaside and drink copious quantities of sea water. Such things are possible. A child might sneak a teacup outside, smash it to smithereens and swallow the bits. Such things are possible.
      I don’t see newspaper reports as relevant really. What is important is the recognition by legislators that “these things happen”.

  3. michaeljmcfadden Says:

    Junican, I think we can say with almost absolute certainty there has never yet been such a death. If there *WAS* it would be headlined all over the world by the Antis.

    While researching butt litter stuff for TNacht, I went into the CDC’s poison registry files, and while they’ve got tens of thousands of cases of frantic parents calling up emergency numbers for “ingestion of tobacco products” I don’t believe I saw a single death. (I’m saying “I don’t believe” because I *do* have a vague idea there might have been one but evidently it seemed questionable enough for me to categorize it mentally as a negative.)

    It would be a very interesting piece of research to graph the number/year of such calls. I’m sure that while cigarettes over the last 30 years have become much LESS accessible to children, that the Antis’ paranoia has probably produced a GREAT increase in such calls.

    Meanwhile, as I noted, there’ve been huge numbers of child poisoning deaths from all manner of other common household substances.

    – MJM

    • Junican Says:

      It is not uncommon for small infants to get their hands on an opened fag packet. What they do is open the flap and pull the fags out and break them up. Mum comes along and goes, “OH MY GOD!!!!” Has baby eaten any of this poison? Better get him/her to hospital without delay.
      Do you know, I am unsure as to what the consequences of eating a small amount of tobacco would be. I seem to remember that tobacco can be used as am emetic, so the most likely consequence would likely be that you would get the shits.

      • michaeljmcfadden Says:

        I seem to recall reading that the general response from poison control centers in the less litigious past was mainly just to reassure the parents that there was unlikely to be any problem worth rushing to the hospital over unless there were unlikely extreme symptoms. That’s probably changed nowadays and millions of dollars have probably been spent (and maybe even a few lives lost) to/on traumatic rushes to the hospital for unnecessary stomach pumpings.

        It reminds of the story of the mom frantically calling poison control about her child eating ants. She was told not to worry and she said thanks, but then noted that she’d taken the precaution anyway of feeding the child some ant poison afterward. Needless to say, the medical advice changed rapidly.

        – MJM

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