Habeas Corpus

‘Habeas Corpus’ might be literally translated as “You have the body”. There are other interpretations, but it is generally understood to mean that the incarceration of a person must be justified, and that that person must be brought before a court without undue delay. In recent times, we have seen the rule of ‘habeas corpus’ being corrupted by releasing people who have been accused of even serious crimes on police bail. But such releases have almost always conditions, such as surrender of passports.

Is it possible to apply the general principle of ‘habeas corpus’ outside the literal concept of imprisoning a human body?

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Let us take the concept of ‘the electronic cigarette’. The Zealots in Tobacco Control want to ‘incarcerate’ ecigs until they can be ‘proven’ to be absolutely safe in the sense that they will do no harm to human lungs. In effect, the Zealots want to incarcerate ecigs until they can be released as harmless. They want to incarcerate eigs by enacting laws which make it impossible for manufacturers to market, in any way at all, their products without incurring enormous costs to prove that their products are harmless.

This process, which the EU and the FDA in the USA seem to be on the point of demanding, is a clear case of ‘habeas corpus’ extended to material things. But are not human bodies mere material things? They are so, and that cannot be denied. In a sense, ‘human bodies’ are no different from any other ‘material thing’. One could say to the FDA, “You are holding ecigs without authority. Justify your actions or release ecigs from custody NOW”

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The FDA is up the creek without a paddle. Only squirming can possibly justify retaining ecigs in custody ad inf. There is no evidence of present harm and no reason to believe that there will be evidence of future harm. Do you see that? “No reason TO EXPECT evidence of future harm”.

It is the spurious,vague, ephemeral presumption that ecigs might possibly cause harm sometime in the future that has been promulgated as a justification for incarceration. Thus, there is a lawful way to release ecigs from custody.

What it comes down to is, “Show NOW that ecigs are harmful or shut up”.

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But it goes further.

The Smoking Ban is another example of the avoidance of ‘habeas corpus’. It is inexcusable that MPs passed the smoking ban law without proof that smoking causes diseases, and even more so, without proof that SHS causes diseases.

 

 

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