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Dr. Mike
6.21.07, 9:00 AM
Is this "grass roots"? RJR sent out this email (below) acting like a political action group soliciting citizen-smokers to push for lower cigarette taxes. This is some amazing nerve on the part of Joe Camel. I'll post it here in it's entirety.

I know that corporations do this sort of thing -- don't like it, but know that they do it. But in this case; I think that a tobacco company going too far. Your thoughts?

From: Camel Confidential [mailto:camelcigarettes@email.camelsmokes.com]
Sent: Thursday, June 21, 2007 08:30
To: XXXXX@YYYY.com
Subject: Politicians in Washington, D.C. are Targeting YOU to Pay Even More

The only way to ensure you will receive all of your important account information and special offers from Camel is to ADD US TO YOUR ADDRESS BOOK (http://email.camelsmokes.com/cgi-bin23/DM/y/haSQ0EzOXa0ESN0LhD0EP)

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Smoke Contains Carbon Monoxide.
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Website and offer restricted to legal age tobacco consumers.

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Dear Michael:

Right now, there is an effort underway by some politicians in Washington, D.C., to increase the federal excise tax on cigarettes by up to 61 cents per pack.
That would be a 156% tax increase! Added to the current excise tax rate of 39 cents per pack, the federal excise tax on cigarettes could soar to $1.00 per pack, or $10.00 per carton! It’s time to take action (http://email.camelsmokes.com/cgi-bin23/DM/y/haSQ0EzOXa0ESN0OC20EX) and tell U.S. Senators and Representatives that enough is enough!
Click here to contact your U.S. Senator and Representative (http://email.camelsmokes.com/cgi-bin23/DM/y/haSQ0EzOXa0ESN0OC20EX) and tell them you are against any attempt to increase the federal excise tax on tobacco products.
Urge them to vote against any tax increase.
Call toll-free 1-877-857-8074 to be connected to your elected official. This is a free call.
For more information on this important issue, please visit www.nocigtax.com (http://email.camelsmokes.com/cgi-bin23/DM/y/haSQ0EzOXa0ESN0OFn0Ea).
Between the federal tax, state and local taxes, and settlement payments, the government raked in almost $33 BILLION in 2006 – just from smokers. More than $7 billion of that went to the federal government alone.
But is that enough for them? No! Some politicians in Washington want to raise the tax significantly higher, placing an even greater economic burden on already over-taxed adult smokers.
Cigarette excise taxes are regressive, unfairly singling out lower-income adult smokers to pay even more. This is an unfair form of “tax profiling.”
Take action today (http://email.camelsmokes.com/cgi-bin23/DM/y/haSQ0EzOXa0ESN0OC20EX) and keep the politicians in Washington out of your wallet!</SPAN>


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ps: yes; I used to be a smoker.

big easy
6.22.07, 12:43 AM
good debate Dr. Mike...I unfortanutely still have my cig habit that needs to stop..I know they are bad and I know they stink to non smokers...but...

it is STILL a legal product that IS being excessively taxed.... question..why not go ahead and raise taxes on them to where they are $50 per pack? many smokers are lower middle class and it is an excessive burden...all in all it just takes more money from the private sector and put into gov't who is just going to piss it away like they always do...

Arlington Texas issues tickets to those caught smoking in their own back yards... people are pulled over caught smoking with their windows down...when is it going to end?...

I know I'm getting off the subject but I've read credible articles showing how the second hand smoke conclusions were based on junk science and I believe it.. personally I believe the fella that let one rip in the elevator today did more damage to my health than the pack of smokes I inhaled today... it's all about more lawsuits and whip the populace into a frenzy to make the jackpot justice system more successful...

again..why not $50 per pack? as long as the product is legal, gov't has no business taxing people in order to control their behaviour... if it kills as fast as the experts claim they do, then the healt costs associated with smoking will be offset by people dying sooner which reduces the expense of caring for the elderly...

either have the hair on your backside to make them illegal, (which they won't because they like the money) or let freedom rein like it's supposed to in the U.S.

Catstrack
6.24.07, 4:35 AM
As a smoker myself...kind of a weird part time one, who does not smoke on a regular basis...AND one who fortunately can go for days or weeks without a cigarette. Still, it's something that I will admit to.

BUT, I do think that most people do understand that RJR and the other tobacco companies would have, nor should they have if unwarrented, post warning labels on cigarette packs if there was not some scientific basis (not just the govt. cowtowing to non-smokers who don't like the stink) that there is factual evidence that smoking not only causes harm to some, smokers and non-smokers who enhale second hand.....but, also as far as medical costs for those who must seek treatment, especially those who are uninsured that the tax payers pick up in either paying for govt. sponsored health care programs or higher premiums by private insurance that passes along the costs of treating smoking related illnesses.

Therefore, I agree with your statement that cigarettes should either be legal or not, as far as being sold as a legal product. Lung cancer is a horrible disease to witness and watch someone deal with. Symptoms usually only appear at a late point. $50 a pack would certainly discourage purchase.

Anyone who smokes, should have a Petscan to hopefully catch lung cancer in the early stage, just like tests of mammograms and other cancer screenings.

reines
6.24.07, 8:47 PM
I'm LOL at the notion that the cigarrette companies are actually worried about the burden on the "poorer" smoker! Right. Yep, they're just lookin out for ya, buddy. Notice how cleverly they've manipulated the wording in this e-mail to attempt to hide their real and only concern- lack of profits if more people finally QUIT!
I say raise the taxes sky-high. Raise them on gasoline also. Let's start actively paying the true cost of these addictions.

Dr. Mike
6.25.07, 8:35 AM
Scans are a great idea, and I agree that every smoker should get them, but scans but they're way too expensive to get without a referral. Probably impossible to even consider for someone without insurance.

Maybe the $5 or $50 per pack tax could be used to pay for it. Also; make the cigarette companies match the tax by making them pay an additional tax (or "license to kill" fee) that they are not permitted to "pass along" to the smoker.

Have you noticed that the pharmaceutical companies are now all pushing COPD drugs. The ads are finally openly talking about smoking as the cause though COPD is thoroughly understood to be a "self-inflicted disease" caused by smoking.

I have the feeling that B.E. doesn't really want a $50/pack tax, but "raising the tax skyhigh" is a good idea. Help cut down new smokers getting started and help to encourage existing smokers to get some gum and STOP! Then use the tax money to help defray the cost of poor or uninsured smokers to get scans and to pay for COPD therapy.

reines
6.25.07, 3:48 PM
Scans are a great idea, and I agree that every smoker should get them, but scans but they're way too expensive to get without a referral. Probably impossible to even consider for someone without insurance.

Maybe the $5 or $50 per pack tax could be used to pay for it. Also; make the cigarette companies match the tax by making them pay an additional tax (or "license to kill" fee) that they are not permitted to "pass along" to the smoker.

Have you noticed that the pharmaceutical companies are now all pushing COPD drugs. The ads are finally openly talking about smoking as the cause though COPD is thoroughly understood to be a "self-inflicted disease" caused by smoking.

I have the feeling that B.E. doesn't really want a $50/pack tax, but "raising the tax skyhigh" is a good idea. Help cut down new smokers getting started and help to encourage existing smokers to get some gum and STOP! Then use the tax money to help defray the cost of poor or uninsured smokers to get scans and to pay for COPD therapy.
Yes, the scoundrels actively market their deadly product to younger and younger kids, pay to have smoking shown over and over in movies as "cool", and attempt to enlist the very victims of their product (the only product that, when used as directed and intended, is deadly fatal) in a campaign to resist restrictions.
I can still see all those cigarette executives sitting there, before Congress, under oath, solemly denying that their product was addictive! Even as they had deliberately pumped up the levels of nicotine for years to gurantee more addiction. What a shameful example that was of corporate immorality.
And now they are still attempting to avoid any responsibility for directly manipulating the public for years, producing and marketing a poisonous product that's caused uncountable suffering and death, not to mention the billions in health care costs and pollution to our environment. It boggles the mind!
Oh well, at least, once again, big Pharma gets to rake in the profits. It's really a one-two punch for American citizens. Corporate America sickens and weakens us by marketing unhealthy, poisonous products and lifestyles.........and then big Pharma does clean-up detail and posts record-breaking profits selling us drugs to treat the symptoms and predictable results. Everyone wins but us.

big easy
6.26.07, 9:23 PM
this is the "mob rule" mentality that concerns me about the left... you totally ignore the Constitution....tobacco is a legal product... I don't see how anybody can justify in Constitutional terms the excessive taxation geared towards steering behaviour... everyone knows the health risks..even 12 year olds... many times they've walked up to me and ask me why I'm doing something that's bad... individuals are free to make their own choices and it is not advertising that is to blame...it's bad choices made by individuals...that's the thing about the left..they never hold indviduals accountable.. it's always the "evil rich" influencing them to do wrong things....it's so much more "sheik" to blame wealthy corporations than an indvividual...

it's the "if it feels good do it" mentality that sets us up for more of the same in incremental fashion step by step....next it will be more taxes on rib eye steaks and burger king fast food to curb obesity and cholesteral.. smoking is bad, it stinks therefore it's an easy target politically....but yall's suggestion is bad policy and does injustice to what the Founding Fathers intended...

Sara Marie
6.27.07, 9:41 AM
this is the "mob rule" mentality that concerns me about the left... you totally ignore the Constitution....tobacco is a legal product...
Well, wake up and smell the Kool-Aid!

Oxycodone is a legal product but taxed and regulated by the government.

Gasoline is a legal product taxed and regulated by the government.

Alcohol is legal but heavily taxed, at least in part, to encourage abstention.

Guns are legal products taxed and regulated by the government.

And so on, and on. It is, in fact and by constitution, one of the ways that we, The People, choose to govern ourselves.

As far as it being "left" or "right"; there just as many dead smokers on the right.

Abortion is a legal act, already heavily regulated by the government but the right doesn't want to tax it, they want to abolish it.

It is legal to be 18 or 19 but the war-mongering right wants to send all the [male] teens to be killed in Iraq. ("Support Our Troops" hah!)

justkathy
6.27.07, 1:11 PM
We want the government to keep us from smoking.

It is our 'right' to have our education provided, our medical needs taken care of,
all scientific resaerch funded and now also to keep us from engaging in bad habits. In such a utopia we don't need parents or self restaraint we have big brother to provide our every need and make all our decisions.

reines
6.27.07, 2:36 PM
this is the "mob rule" mentality that concerns me about the left... you totally ignore the Constitution....tobacco is a legal product... I don't see how anybody can justify in Constitutional terms the excessive taxation geared towards steering behaviour... everyone knows the health risks..even 12 year olds... many times they've walked up to me and ask me why I'm doing something that's bad... individuals are free to make their own choices and it is not advertising that is to blame...it's bad choices made by individuals...that's the thing about the left..they never hold indviduals accountable.. it's always the "evil rich" influencing them to do wrong things....it's so much more "sheik" to blame wealthy corporations than an indvividual...

it's the "if it feels good do it" mentality that sets us up for more of the same in incremental fashion step by step....next it will be more taxes on rib eye steaks and burger king fast food to curb obesity and cholesteral.. smoking is bad, it stinks therefore it's an easy target politically....but yall's suggestion is bad policy and does injustice to what the Founding Fathers intended...

Hey bigeasy, it doesn't much matter whether or not tobacco is a "legal" product..........we regulate, tax and restrict many, many other such "legal "products for the good of all. It's one of the benefits of living in a civilized society........with the emphasis on SOCIETY. As in collective group of people banding together for the general betterment of all. Why should babies and children have to injest all the hundreds of toxic poisons and chemicals in tobacco smoke? Why should I? Feel free to smoke all you want in your own house- just don't expect the rest of society to to content to be your ashtray.


We want the government to keep us from smoking.

It is our 'right' to have our education provided, our medical needs taken care of,
all scientific resaerch funded and now also to keep us from engaging in bad habits. In such a utopia we don't need parents or self restaraint we have big brother to provide our every need and make all our decisions.
Feel free to engage in any bad habit you'd like to....within the law, of course. Just don't expect the rest of us to accomodate you. Why should my lungs be poisoned in public places just because you can't find the strength to overcome your addiction? Isn't that what you guys always are so proud of? That we should all be pillars of individual strength, only responsible to ourselves and beholden to no wishy-washy concepts of actually looking out for one another? Huh?

big easy
6.27.07, 11:43 PM
2nd hand smoke is junk science just like global warming... I'm not disagreeing about taxes totally reines..just the amount...do you realize that tobacco taxes have exceeded 100% of the price?.... what right to you think you have to pick MY pocket to that degree?... it is DISGUSTING and PARASITIC... and serves NO useful purpose other than self gratification for those who are obsessed in feeling better about themselves.... SOCIETY my ASS./.... what a crock....I need to go smoke now...hopefully tomorrow I'll make strides towards quitting...until then get out of my pocket and go feed a stray animal and make a difference in your neighborhood instead trying to save the world...

reines
6.28.07, 2:48 PM
2nd hand smoke is junk science just like global warming... I'm not disagreeing about taxes totally reines..just the amount...do you realize that tobacco taxes have exceeded 100% of the price?.... what right to you think you have to pick MY pocket to that degree?... it is DISGUSTING and PARASITIC... and serves NO useful purpose other than self gratification for those who are obsessed in feeling better about themselves.... SOCIETY my ASS./.... what a crock....I need to go smoke now...hopefully tomorrow I'll make strides towards quitting...until then get out of my pocket and go feed a stray animal and make a difference in your neighborhood instead trying to save the world...
Are you seriously claiming that all the studies that prove how damaging second hand smoke is are "junk"? C-mon bigeasy, that's just delusional! Even the CDC has come out and said that children who are exposed to second hand smoke are much more likely to become smokers.
I think it's terrible that taxes on cigarettes are so high- and if I smoked, I'd certainly QUIT rather than pay them. Doesn't it make you mad that cigarette companies deliberately spike the levels of nicotine so that you get even more addicted...and then hike up the prices because you ARE addicted and will pay any price? Don't blame the high cost of cigarettes on just taxes. And I'm not "picking your pocket"...on the contrary, I'd be thrilled if you (and all the other smokers) just quit tommorrow and never, ever had to pay for a product that's going to kill you ever again.
Have you tried the new drug they have? (Can't remember the name)- I understand it works for a lot of people. But nothing works really until you really want to quit.
I hope you DO find a way to quit bigeasy- for you and for your family. I watched my father die slowly from emphysema- definitely not the way you want to go. And with all the money you'd then save...you could contribute fully to Warren Buffet's favorite charities! LOL

justkathy
6.28.07, 3:55 PM
There is some question about the validity of the second hand smoke studies, There is a lot of politicaly correctness involved.


http://www.townhall.com/columnists/WalterEWilliams/2007/04/10/phony_science_and_public_policy

reines
6.28.07, 7:48 PM
The only ones questioning these studies are those who don't want to have their toxic habit curtailed. "Tyranny", indeed! Funny how everything that doesn't line up with one's wishes can just be called "bogus science".
Gee, we don't allow people to buy their very own nuclear weapons, do we? Wow- isn't that "tyranny"? I mean, gosh, all of us who would prefer to avoid possible nuclear meltdown can just..........move elsewhere, right?
A society has the perfect right to regulate and control things that are deemed to be potentially dangerous. We accept this for drugs, alcohol, and other chemicals.....yet for something like tobacco smoke, which has over 4,000 toxic chemicals in it, we're not supposed to?
Right.

big easy
6.28.07, 10:55 PM
this is a discussion about taxation not regulation.. if they want to regulate it in regards to making it against the law to sell to minors, putting the warning labels and keeping people from smoking in certain indoor areas, that's cool... studying the harmful effects and what have you fine...

cigarettes are taxed to death..the taxes are increasing the costs..not the tobacco companies.... and when you support draconian taxation you ARE tipping into the pockets of smokers and it serves no useful purpose for society.. there's no moral or logical reason for it other than just hating cigarettes and wanting to punish those who smoke...period...nuclear weapons?...gimme a break

Catstrack
6.29.07, 4:16 AM
There is some question about the validity of the second hand smoke studies, There is a lot of politicaly correctness involved.


http://www.townhall.com/columnists/WalterEWilliams/2007/04/10/phony_science_and_public_policy

It's not wonder that townhall would post an article opposing studies that the EPA did. Townhall, like many other politically driven forums, has an agenda.

Anyone (not you in particular) who thinks that second hand smoke is healthy or causes no other risks to, especially to those with existing respiratory problems or those who may be just be in the way of a smoke filled room, etc.....are misguided, IMHO.

It is a health issue for many and not relagated to a simple arguement of polical correctness.

http://www.epa.gov/smokefree/healtheffects.html

Catstrack
6.29.07, 4:27 AM
this is a discussion about taxation not regulation.. if they want to regulate it in regards to making it against the law to sell to minors, putting the warning labels and keeping people from smoking in certain indoor areas, that's cool... studying the harmful effects and what have you fine...

cigarettes are taxed to death..the taxes are increasing the costs..not the tobacco companies.... and when you support draconian taxation you ARE tipping into the pockets of smokers and it serves no useful purpose for society.. there's no moral or logical reason for it other than just hating cigarettes and wanting to punish those who smoke...period...nuclear weapons?...gimme a break

Smokers (myself included) choose to smoke even knowing that at some point smoking can become an addiction and it may control their lives in regards as to making sure they have smokes, lighter, get the nicotine level up. I can take it or leave it....often don't smoke for days or weeks at a time.

Smoking may be legal, but the cost to taxpayer's who don't smoke and who still pay a part for health care premiums for others who do and are covered under their insurance or Medicare, Medicaid, etc.

Dr. Mike
6.29.07, 10:52 AM
Hi BE,


this is a discussion about taxation not regulation..
Taxation is both a means for generating revenue and also a common means for regulating (as in "throttling" or moderating the flow or use or directing the flow or use). Capital gains taxes are an example; to encourage long-term investment over short-term. The so-called "energy credits" are another. The "gas guzzler" tax is another. Trade tarifs are a type of regulation by taxation that we allremember from 5th grade.


...cigarettes are taxed to death..
That wasn't supposed to be funny, I hope.


...the taxes are increasing the costs..not the tobacco companies....
Yes; now you're getting it. That is the point. The tax, unfortunately, has to do what the tobacco companies have not stepped up to do.


...it serves no useful purpose for society.. there's no moral or logical reason for it other than just hating cigarettes and wanting to punish those who smoke...
Ah; there you are clearly mistaken. Higher taxes are specifically meant to help society by encouraging smokers to quit and discouraging new smokers from starting down the road to perdition.

It does work; see Canada for a long-term example of how it helps. See most of nothern Europe for further examples. The USA is sort of in the middle of the scale. For examples on the other end, look in places where smoking is not regulated (http://www.hno.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/09.18/26-tobacco.html). (Click here for a sample article (http://www.hno.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/09.18/26-tobacco.html).)

Good luck with that cough, dude.

reines
6.29.07, 3:50 PM
this is a discussion about taxation not regulation.. if they want to regulate it in regards to making it against the law to sell to minors, putting the warning labels and keeping people from smoking in certain indoor areas, that's cool... studying the harmful effects and what have you fine...

cigarettes are taxed to death..the taxes are increasing the costs..not the tobacco companies.... and when you support draconian taxation you ARE tipping into the pockets of smokers and it serves no useful purpose for society.. there's no moral or logical reason for it other than just hating cigarettes and wanting to punish those who smoke...period...nuclear weapons?...gimme a break
But taxation IS a form of regulation, bigeasy......and is particularly easy to do in the case of cigarettes because, well, the ADDICTION factor! And there are ways to get around those taxes- folks around here buy their cigarettes on the Indian reservation just to avoid paying taxes.
But seriously, you don't really think there is some nefarious cabal of immoral and cruel folks passing tax after tax on cigarettes just because they hate them and want to persecute you? Talk about embracing victimhood! You shouldn't take this personal bigeasy...........it's much more about money than it is about anything else.

justkathy
6.29.07, 4:07 PM
Nobody anywhere believes that secondhand smoke is healthy. The main point of that article was that the unhealthy aspects of it may be exagerated somewhat. Smoking, of couse, is an unhealty habit. But is it the role of the government to change those habits.?Shouldn't personal property rights have some say in whether or not an establishment chooses to allow smoking on its premisis? Nobody is forcing you to enter that bar/restaurant. You make that choice just as employees make the choice whether or not to work there.

If we let the free market decide, smoking will probably become less and less common all the time. More and more eating establishments are going smoke-free by their own choice. I know Applebee's has. I went there a few months ago with a friend who smokes and she had to leave her cigarettes in her purse. One of the major hotel chains, Marriot, I think, is changing to a totaly smoke free environment. They must have decided what they would lose by not having smokers as guests would be more than made up in reduced cleaning costs and having happier guests who do chose to stay.

The whole attitde towards smoking has changed so much in the past twenty to thirty years. I remember when I was a kid in the '50's and the '60's it seemed as if everybody I knew had parents who smoked. Smoking was so commonplace it went on everywhere and nobody thought anything about it. Now, with a minority of the population smoking attitudes are quite different. More and more people want to eat out at places that don't allow smoking. That number is getting bigger all the time. Establisments will become non-smoking as a matter of ecconomic survival. We don't need laws to make it happen it will happen on its own. And if the changes happens naturally through market forces there will be a lot less anger and resentment than when it is done through the force of Big Brother,

big easy
6.30.07, 2:45 PM
good post Katy...and Dr Mike I understand that we would all be better off without tobacco... smokers already pay more for life and health insurance and since they die earlier, that reduces costs associated with them in many other ways..

My point as I said inititally, is that government has NO right to regulate the LEGAL habits of citizens based on individual freedoms outlined in the spirit of the Constitution... now I know cigs are not listed in the Constitution, but if you are familiar with it, and what the main emphasis of it was overall, you have to agree that we are simply using the document for toilet paper when legislation to this degree is exercised....

if you agree that government has the right to tax a legal product in order to curtail the use, then you must also be willing to admit that in this particular area of Constitutional freedom, you could give a rat's behind....

what's next...ribeyes?, butter?....lobster and shrimp have lots of cholesteral too..no? fast food?...how can you not justify excessive taxation on these products as well since reduced consumption of them would also make us a healthier society?

reines
7.1.07, 11:18 AM
"My point as I said inititally, is that government has NO right to regulate the LEGAL habits of citizens based on individual freedoms outlined in the spirit of the Constitution..."

That's just ridiculous, bigeasy- of course a government has the legal right to regulate potentially dangerous things- it's called living in a CIVILIZED society!

reines
7.1.07, 11:36 AM
Nobody anywhere believes that secondhand smoke is healthy. The main point of that article was that the unhealthy aspects of it may be exagerated somewhat. Smoking, of couse, is an unhealty habit. But is it the role of the government to change those habits.?Shouldn't personal property rights have some say in whether or not an establishment chooses to allow smoking on its premisis? Nobody is forcing you to enter that bar/restaurant. You make that choice just as employees make the choice whether or not to work there.

If we let the free market decide, smoking will probably become less and less common all the time. More and more eating establishments are going smoke-free by their own choice. I know Applebee's has. I went there a few months ago with a friend who smokes and she had to leave her cigarettes in her purse. One of the major hotel chains, Marriot, I think, is changing to a totaly smoke free environment. They must have decided what they would lose by not having smokers as guests would be more than made up in reduced cleaning costs and having happier guests who do chose to stay.

The whole attitde towards smoking has changed so much in the past twenty to thirty years. I remember when I was a kid in the '50's and the '60's it seemed as if everybody I knew had parents who smoked. Smoking was so commonplace it went on everywhere and nobody thought anything about it. Now, with a minority of the population smoking attitudes are quite different. More and more people want to eat out at places that don't allow smoking. That number is getting bigger all the time. Establisments will become non-smoking as a matter of ecconomic survival. We don't need laws to make it happen it will happen on its own. And if the changes happens naturally through market forces there will be a lot less anger and resentment than when it is done through the force of Big Brother,
May be exaggerated "somewhat"? Tell me, are the statistics of children having asthma in this country "exaggerated"? Are the numbers on lung cancer, emphysema and COPD "exaggerated"? It's a scientific fact that there are over 4,000 noxious and poisonous chemicals in cigarette smoke- you think that's "exaggerated"? Please.
I just can't agree with your claim that market forces should determine all public policy- it's just not either practical or effective. People, including lots and lots of children, get hurt that way. When they don't have to.
It would be wonderful to imagine that every corporation would automatically do the right and moral thing....and that personal individual actions have much more power and importance than corporate money and power.
But it just ain't so. While the cigarette industry pours billions of dollars into trying to frame this as a civil rights issue, they are also using every tool at their disposal to hook children and teens into smoking...and to keep adults smoking. And if they hadn't been forced into stopping advertising on most of the media, they would be also be spending billions to convince the public that smoking is great for you. And, like it or not, that advertising and psychological warfare does work. Your average citizen just busy trying to get through the day, can't possibly fight the influence and collective power of all that money and advertising.
I can remember when smoking was as casual and common as breathing also..........but we didn't know then what we know now. And we still wouldn't know any of that now if cigarrette companies had their way. This is a company that's actively KILLING it's donors.....and busy now trying to KILL gullible victims overseas.
Collective society has a right to protect itself (especially its weakest and youngest members) from harm. The only effective way to reign in an industry like the cigarette one is through the power of government.
You can't drink and drive in public. You see, hoping and wishing that every individual too drunk to drive wouldn't just didn't work out too well, did it? And you shouldn't be able to smoke in public.

big easy
7.1.07, 4:04 PM
the 2nd hand smoke "studies" were done in order to have the desired outcome..just like Kathy said..nobody is claiming that 2nd hand smoke is totally harm free... there is credible evidence that says that it is not as bad as what people have been led to believe....

many people get emphysema without ever smoking...asthma was around before tobacco I'm sure....

putting the warning labels on smokeis hardly saying they are good for you I would think..

those who do it, or not being sold a false bill of good reines... you seem to want to blame the tobacco companies for everything and throw individual accountability out the window in your usual typical left winged fashion

reines
7.1.07, 6:51 PM
You seriously think the kids that the Joe Camel campaign were aimed at understood that they were being targeted, manipulated and cajoled into taking up a highly addictive habit that many people find impossible to quit?
And don't even try to tell me that the cigarette industry hasn't repeatedly and shamefully and willingly marketed their product to younger and younger "victims"! And now they are targeting billions of people overseas in third world countries who probably are unfamilar with both their marketing strategies and the latest scientific information on how deadly smoking really is.
Of course the real decision to smoke is made by the individual...but you simply can't ignore the reality that smoking is highly addictive.......and that the industry does everything possible to "hook" younger and younger people into getting addicted.
And yes, I do blame these blood-sucking, greedy immoral bastards- I will NEVER forget the sight of all those tobacco industry executives sitting there, oh, so solemnly before Congress and LYING over and over about knowing how addictive nicotine was.

big easy
7.3.07, 12:23 AM
"of course the real decision to smoke is made by the indivudual"...

WOW...progress

reines
7.8.07, 1:03 PM
"of course the real decision to smoke is made by the indivudual"...

WOW...progress
But that's not really the point, is it? You could use that individual choice statement to support virtually anything.
It's your choice to drive a car- right? But don't you want the very latest safety equipment on it? It's your choice to use herbicides, pesticides or other various poisons in your home and yard, right? But don't you want safety information and guidelines on useage? It's your choice to drink alcohol, right? But don't you want DWI laws?
And, on a very broad overall level- don't you, as a consumer want to know that there are basic health and safety regulations and guidelines that manufacturers and producers have to abide by- even though it's our CHOICE to consume?
Considering the billions and billions of dollars that industries like the tobacco industry use to try to get younger and younger people to get hooked- the individual just can't have a fair fight these days.

big easy
7.9.07, 10:05 PM
safety equip on cars? whose saying cigs are safe?
the package says "causes cancer"...what dumbass (like me) is going to light up?...are you kiddin'?
DWI'S and smoking?...PLEASE...

don't have a fair fight?...it's called NOT DOING IT....PRO CHOICE..maybe that word resignates...

reines
7.10.07, 6:49 PM
Children don't have the ability or the cynicism to understand how they are being manipulated and cajoled into taking up smoking- and to pretend they can make anything like a "fair" choice is just ridiculous.
Why do you think the tobacco industry has been so adament about marketing to kids?
You want to put your three year old up against the billions of dollars that they have for psychological manipulation and brainwashing? You seriously think he's going to be able to resist the advertising? Most three year olds know more about corporate symbols than they do the trees growing in their own yards.

big easy
7.11.07, 8:20 AM
no it's not ridiculous.. it's called good parenting... maybe do away with all cig advertising... in the end, it's personal choice and the info out on smoking far outweighs any joe camel billboard... psychological manip and brainwashing?..c'mon..

many already do resist advertising...sure he can... obesity is just as bad a health concern as smoking...would you go for additional taxes on fast food and ice cream? I just don't believe it's the gov's job to tax in order to curtail behaviour of a legal product... I think it fails constitutional muster

reines
7.11.07, 3:05 PM
no it's not ridiculous.. it's called good parenting... maybe do away with all cig advertising... in the end, it's personal choice and the info out on smoking far outweighs any joe camel billboard... psychological manip and brainwashing?..c'mon..

many already do resist advertising...sure he can... obesity is just as bad a health concern as smoking...would you go for additional taxes on fast food and ice cream? I just don't believe it's the gov's job to tax in order to curtail behaviour of a legal product... I think it fails constitutional muster
You really need to do more research into the advertising industry- yes, they certainly do manipulate and brainwash people.....and they are increasingly going after younger and younger kids.
There's a huge difference between fatty food and cigarette smoke, bigeasy- mainly, one has over 400 noxious poisons in it...and the other doesn't. It's not so much about protecting you from yourself as it is protecting the rest of society. Why should the rest of us have to suffer the negative effects of all those toxins and chemicals? A major study on second-hand smoke concluded that even brief exposures can cause immediate harm. (Of course, that study was delayed and suppressed for years under this administration.)

big easy
7.11.07, 10:40 PM
there have been other "major" studies refuting 2nd hand smoke dangers... the ones that the "consensus" were designed for more litigation.... the research was outcome driven as opposed to facts.... and I doubt Bush delayed anything..more moveon lies prolly... if he did, he was justified in doing so... the 2nd hand smoke research was flawed.. many more have shown it was way overblown designed for more jack pot justice

reines
7.12.07, 8:05 PM
Why do you "doubt" Bush delayed anything? Carmona testified that he did! You really have a hard time imagining the Bush administration suppressing scientific evidence when it doesn't line up with their business interests (lobbyists) after the past six years?!?
But again, it's got to be ALL about money in your world, right? There just can't be actual scientific evidence (in study after study) that second-hand smoke is dangerous- it's just got to be somebody wanting to get rich.
Why is it that the party of big business interests always assumes everything else is always about somebody profitting? I guess when it's ALL about money, all the time, it must be hard to imagine that most people are not motivated by personal profit.

big easy
7.15.07, 1:22 AM
with all the money being made from lawsuits, I find it hard to ignore the money trail.. venturing off of it usually steers one away from what's actually happening... the studies done here were outcome driven and based on flawed science...euro studies with no financial stakes involved, came to different conclusions...not saying that 2nd hand smoke is healthy, but the hysteria that exists today is overblown and the lawsuits are not justified

Dr. Mike
7.16.07, 11:05 AM
with all the money being made from lawsuits, I find it hard to ignore the money trail.. venturing off of it usually steers one away from what's actually happening...
If you mean that suggesting that the lawsuits are off the money trail, I'm totally with you. It sounds like you're saying that the lawsuits are a money trail of some kind -- like the different lawsuits are going to lead back to a single rights-stealing entity -- but of course that's obviously not the case.


...euro studies with no financial stakes involved, came to different conclusions...not saying that 2nd hand smoke is healthy, but the hysteria that exists today is overblown ...
Actually no; that's not correct. The studies in Europe have come to all of the same conclusions: that 2nd hand smoke makes non-smokers expensively sick, that smoke damages the infrastructure and art of all Europe, and that 2nd hand smoke is expensive to all taxpayers but of benefit to none but the tobacco sellers.

FYI: Ireland was the first country in the world to outright ban smoking in all workplaces, without exception. This, on purpose, includes restaurants, hotels and bars. (Ireland is in Europe and an original member of the E.U.) Here's a list of each of the countries of Europe and the anti-smoking laws that they have in place (European Health Alliance) (http://www.epha.org/a/1941).

Almost every country in Europe has followed with bans or separate space restrictions. Most use taxes explicitly for the purpose of discouraging smoking and reducing the number smokers. Click here for an article on how a price (or tax) increase works to reduce smoking, smoking-caused deaths and smoking related expense. (WHO report on pricing.) (http://www.euro.who.int/HEN/Syntheses/tobcontrol/20030822_3)

The European Union itself has laws governing movement and advertising of tobacco products.

You're welcome!

big easy
7.16.07, 11:34 PM
thank you Dr Mike... I too have seen the actions taken on by Ireland... but I've also read and heard about the studies of 2nd hand smoke and I still am convinced the studies were outcome driven...and I've read about another euro report that totally refuted the American "studies"... the jackpot justice system of tobacco litigation is the driving force behind the flawed conclusion of 2nd hand smoke... I'm not buying it..not when I've seen 95 year old smokers without lung cancer and a 30 yr old whose never smoked dying of emphysema...

again...smoking is bad...and especially to non smokers, they stink.... tobacco has lots of money so the timing was perfect... I'm sure you are happy about all the outcomes, taxes, and demands placed on private owners of bars and restaurants...so congrats..your side one..

by the way...I have not had a smoke since Sat afternoon...I still prefer to sit in the smoking section of bars and restaurants though...the people are generally nicer and more fun to be around...

Dr. Mike
7.17.07, 12:13 AM
by the way...I have not had a smoke since Sat afternoon...I still prefer to sit in the smoking section of bars and restaurants though...the people are generally nicer and more fun to be around...

That's fantastic B.E.! Congratulations. I wish you all the luck and strength you need to keep it going.

big easy
7.17.07, 11:02 PM
PRESHATE it Dr. Mike.. Tue evening and still no cig since 12:50 PM Sat afternoon... next step now is to start some daily exercise to get the cholesteral down...I've already cut out about 80% of my butter consumption as well...cholesteral was at 230... at age 44, time to start making some changes..like to see my 3 year old get married one day..

God Bless...

reines
7.20.07, 4:07 PM
by the way...I have not had a smoke since Sat afternoon...I still prefer to sit in the smoking section of bars and restaurants though...the people are generally nicer and more fun to be around...
Congratulations bigeasy on quitting! I think your idea about exercise is a good one- more exercise can only help you get over that addiction. I'm sending you lots of good thoughts and prayers to help you quit for good! Can you feel them? LOL
Seriously, you CAN do it. My father was a chain smoker fromm the time he was 13! And he quit. If he could- anyone can. And just think of how much better you will smell! Your wife and son and future children deserve to have you around- don't let the tobacco industry make you sacrifice your life for corporate profits!
And BTW, regarding those second-hand smoke studies- The US Surgeon General reported last year that nonsmokers exposed to seconhand smoke increase their risk of developing heart disease and lung cancer by up to 30 percent. Do you seriously think this administration's Surgeon General would be in it for the lawsuit money?!?
Anyways, hang in there, bigeasy- you CAN quit!