It is becoming more and more clear that, right from the outset, the objective of tobacco control was simple – the total destruction of the tobacco industry. I mean THE TOTAL destruction – plants, farms, curing barns, markets, factories, distribution, sales. The initial leaders, those people in the USA and the UK especially, who controlled the UN after WW2, must have pondered long and hard about how the prohibition of tobacco could be reintroduced after its failure in the USA. I am talking about people like Godber, Doll, Terry, Koop, etc, along with the American Foundations. They must have thought long and hard.
Their first problem would have been their own motivation. They would have been aware that banning the production of tobacco would fail, and so they would need to ban the use of tobacco. If they could do that, then the tobacco industry would fade away. They would have realised that the job would be a long-term one, probably taking time well beyond their own lifetimes. How could they motivate themselves? It could only be because they saw the destruction of the tobacco industry as an end to an evil empire. A wicked empire which sucked people in and sucked them dry until they were dead. ‘Merchants of Death’ for their own profit in wealth and power. So, like evangelists of old, they dedicated their lives to destroying the tobacco industry. Unlike the communist slogan “Religion is the opium of the people”, the new slogan read “Tobacco is the enslavement of the people” because of its purported addictive qualities. The word ‘enslavement’ gave the moral dimension upon which tobacco control, in the early days, depended.
It is clear that the originators dared not risk the collapse of tobacco control as happened with prohibition of alcohol. The new prohibition (of enslavement) had to be a lot cleverer. Don’t ban the manufacture of tobacco products or the use of tobacco products. Instead, hit the middle ground a little at a time. Make the cost of tobacco products higher and higher and reduce the opportunity to use the products. Vilify the products and ostracise the users as junkies. All to be accomplished a little at a time.
It is possible to understand the high minded intentions of the originators. It is said that ‘the end justifies the means’, but that idea has been debunked many times in history on the grounds that it is never justifiable to commit evil no matter how much one might think that results might be good. The key word is ‘might’ – the results might well be anything but good. But it is also possible for these good people to sidestep these objections by employing or encouraging, or even just not stopping, others to do the vilifying and ostracising – Public Relations companies, for example. “Not me Gov”.
I jump now to the present day. All the original originators are dead. And yet the original objective – the total destruction of the tobacco industry remains. However, the moral (enslavement) aspect no longer exists. Lip service is paid to it, but it is long gone. The destruction of the tobacco industry and now become the objective of a new industry – the tobacco control industry. Money now drives the new industry and not morality.
We might leap on and ask ourselves why the tobacco control industry came out, at the highest levels (in the UN, WHO, EU), against ecigs?
We must again state what an ecig is. It is a mixture of harmless aerosols (propylene glycol etc), a bit of nicotine and some flavours which we inhale every day. Most animals sniff (inhale) food before they eat it. We also like to sniff our food before we eat it, even though we know that it has been cooked to perfection – sniff, sniff, yum, yum. Wine tasters sniff ‘the bouquet’ before tasting. We have been inhaling flavours since time immemorial. We love inhaling flavours. I wonder if our bronchial tubes have taste buds? Where is the research?
Is it odd that the tobacco control industry did not see the rise in popularity or ecigs? Well, no ….. not really. The WHO is so under the control of the TCI (Tobacco Control Industry) that it did not see the Ebola mounting toll of deaths. It was more concerned about potential deaths around 2045 than thousands of real deaths here and now. Further, the potential deaths would be among the very old, whereas the real deaths would be among youthful people.
It seems that there has been lately a vague acceptance of ecigs. The belligerent anti-ecig rhetoric has been toned down. The so-called ‘studies’ of Glantz, Chapman et al have been quietly shelved.
The ‘newthink’ of the top echelons of the TCI is very clever. Rather than be against ecigs, they will gain control of them. The British Medical Assn has been pushed to one side. It is the Royal College of Physicians, the owners of ASH, which is in the ascendant. But they still want to destroy the tobacco industry.
I can understand how the BMA wanted to ban ecigs. They would see a scenario in which the tobacco industry would buy up ecig companies and would survive. Drat!! The tobacco industry has not been destroyed. The RCP see it differently. They must have thought long and hard and had many secret discussions. If ecigs really work, then the infrastructure of the supply of tobacco products will be destroyed. It is a matter of fact that curing tobacco leaves is not remotely necessary to extract the nicotine from them. In fact, ‘nicotiana tobaccum’ is not the plant which contains the most nicotine. ‘Nicotiana rustica’ contains about twice as much nicotine.
Thus, it really does not matter who produces ecigs. Tobacco companies would still no longer exist as suppliers of tobacco products which would no longer exist. The Tobacco Industry would still have been destroyed.
What can vapers do? In the first place, they must not under any circumstance abandon ‘the high moral ground’. They should not allow themselves to be drawn into blather about nicotine. THEY HAVE STOPPED SMOKING TOBACCO AS INSTRUCTED BY THE GREAT AND THE GOOD. That, morally, is the most important thing.
I know that Totally Wicked is trying to contest the EU Directive about ecigs. Is Totally Wicked alone? How many vapers are contributing to the costs of the action? Are other suppliers contributing to the costs? Where are the marchers? Have ecig shops been leafleting their customers? At the vapefest at Shrewsbury, how much attention was given to the ‘moral high ground’? I suspect none.
Smokers never had a chance. The planning of the bans etc was perfect. The infiltration of Health Depts was such that, other than following the dictats of the tobacco control industry, such health departments have been rendered to blitzed wrecks. Three Health Ministers on the trot have been silly girls. It cannot help but be deliberate. Why has no recent health minister been a sage, male experienced MP? It stinks, and it is deliberate. Milton got sacked and cried, Soubry thought that ecig regs had been dropped from the Tobacco Directive and Allison is wetting her knickers over being a boss.
I wonder how we can detect the stench of political decay? Not every decaying object stinks. We might ask how the present contenders for the Labour leadership ’emerged’?
Does anyone remember how, some fifty years ago, in the Conservative party, there was no choice of leader? The leader EMERGED. Erm… no. A self-appointed group of ’eminences’ in the Tory Party decided who would be leader. Did anything change when Cameron was ‘elected’? Not a lot, I think. Not many people noticed that he came from nowhere. What Great Office Of State had he held? Erm… None.
A UN/WHO spokesman was asked about the loss of jobs in tobacco farms in Africa should tobacco growing be banned. He said that the farmers would diversify. Anyone who knows anything about the history of the last couple of centuries would realise that that statement is the same as ‘let them eat cake’. That was the response of the Queen of France when asked how the people could feed themselves if bread was in short supply. “Cannot grow tobacco? Let them grow lettuce”.
Is it possible for vapers to keep control of their industry? That would only be possible if they refused absolutely and totally to fall under the commercial spell of the tobacco companies. That is hard.
What a pity that ecigs shops (whether on-line or real) have not been ‘educating’ their customers for the last several years.
Is it too late?