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Should Obama Sign Tobacco Bill?

By       Message John Jonik     Permalink
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37. ( Reduced risk products increase risk) This finding ignores that certain products go far further than "purporting" to reduce risk; they absolutely and certifiably DO reduce not only risk but inevitable harm.
* Removal of asbestos from Kent filters reduced risk of mesothelioma.
* US Government inspections (now perversely discontinued) of import tobacco.
* And so-called "fire-safe" cigarettes are intended to reduce risk.
This bill, by failing to so much as mention dioxin-producing chlorine, as a prime example, aids and abets those who are causing, and will continue to cause serious risks and harms.

38. (National Cancer Institute speaks) The NCI has been often exposed as being staffed with those who are linked to or part of cancer-causing industries such as chlorine and pesticide interests. NCI routinely ignores health threats from those products.
* A not-so-laughable thing here is that, while condemning "light" cigarettes, the FDA has been empowered to lower nicotine levels to create the same things...which induce more smoking, deeper inhaling, and more exposures to harmful non-tobacco cigarette adulterants.

39. {More on “Light” cigarettes) With the usual full permission and knowledge of government, those "lighter" products contained even more (untested, often dangerous) non-tobacco additives than other products. The extra additives replaced flavors lost by lowered tars and nicotine levels. With full permission and cold indifferent silence from
government officials, people who tried to mitigate harms were hit unknowingly with more harms than had they stayed with "heavier" cigarettes. The cruelty of that is significant.

40. (FDA can’t do everything) n other words...the FDA excuses itself from addressing even the most obvious and non-arguable risks---burn accelerants, dioxin-producing chlorine contaminants, carcinogenic radiation from fertilizers, DDT that might have slipped in, all of the 450 or so tobacco pesticides, addiction-enhancing substances and so on.
The FDA makes itself an unholy trinity---three monkeys in one--no seeing, no hearing, or no discussing.

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41. (A lie) No products claim to be "less harmful". That's been illegal for a good while. This is a 'straw target'. One small cigarette maker, in the past, did claim that his organic cigarettes were safer. The feds shut him down.

42. Claims of reduced risk) Statements that products are Additive-Free or Organic are not unsubstantiated claims. But the FDA may construe such factual statements as "implying" reduced risk and then forbidding such information to be relayed, in any way, to customers. This, idiotically, counter-productively, would increase people's risk of harm from the pesticides, dioxins and the rest because customers would not know how to avoid them.
By this thinking, hand-held filters or water pipes may be banned because they "imply" (and are) a reduced-risk smoking experience.
Further, since many already know that the American Spirit and Nat Sherman brands are additive-free and/or organic, those very brands may be prohibited. Same thing with some foreign cigarettes from lands where dangerous, but U.S.-legal, adulterants are banned. Question: Is all this an Unintended Consequence?

43. (More on Reduced Risk) The intensity of the concerns about "reduced risk" indicate highly prioritized official efforts to assure that the pesticides, chlorine, fertilizers and other "legal" adulterants are not indicted by the existence of Good Example cigarettes that demonstrate the extreme harm, and liabilities, of the responsible adulterants industries. This law, by leaving the pesticides and fertilizer matters to the USDA, serves to maintain maximum risks to consumers.

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44. ( FDA is the expert) The FDA claims to have "scientific expertise", but it cannot even see the chlorine-bleached cigarette paper, it doesn't know that smoke from no plant can cause many or most so-called "smoking related" diseases, and it is unable to find even government material about things like fake tobacco (at the Patent Office), about dioxin in cigarettes (at the EPA), about the hundreds of pesticides (USDA and EPA), or about radioactive fertilizers (USDA and EPA…or the March 86 Readers’ Digest at the National Archives).. Mr. Magoo has more claims to expertise.

45, (Federal Trade Commission) The FTC has, for generations, let cigarette makers get away with the advertising and other deceptions about products being just tobacco, or tobacco at all. The FTC has coldly let consumers believe, quite wrongly, that they were just using tobacco…perhaps no different than Geronimo’s pipe-stuffing. This point tells us that these agencies cannot, or will not, effectively implement all provisions, but it doesn’t say which ones they plan to fail at.

46. ( FDA predicts that it can’t fully implement) The FDA is squirming to avoid the implication that ALL it regulates may be as inevitably harmful as the Pesticide Pegs, Dioxin Dowels, and Radiation Rods it refers to as "tobacco products". Of course, tobacco is far from the only chlorine-contaminated, pesticide-contaminated product, with all sorts of Guinea-pigging experimental components, that it pretends to regulate.

47. (Court says Cig firms target youth) Dueling Court Cases: In July, 1998, US Federal court Judge William Osteen found that the EPA fraudulently cooked the books in its material about so-called "Environmental Tobacco Smoke", or "ETS"...as if cigarette smoke they "studied" was from tobacco or just tobacco in any case. That discredited material has been used to justify virtually all, if not all, state and other municipal Smoking Ban laws. The EPA has not yet challenged that court's findings. One point being---we don't actually know yet if, or how much, so-called "ETS" is harmful to anyone...and that includes even the industrially-contaminated smoke. Smoke from plain tobacco may not even register on the Harm Scales.

48. (Cig firms target youth, again, and “tobacco settlement”) That "settlement" saved the cigarette industry not millions or billions of dollars but Trillions in even very conservatively-estimated potential liabilities...not even counting criminal penalties. Settlement money did not come from the cigarette firms. It came from price hikes on its victims. No states barred that. AND, to add insult to injury to injury... the states have no prohibition of sending that money right back in subsidies to the cigarette industry...the pesticides, chlorine, additives, advertising, investing, and other gang members.

49. (Court says Cig firms adjust nicotine levels) Since most cigarettes are made from "reconstituted tobacco" (paper made from tobacco trash mostly), and mixed and contaminated with any of untold hundreds of things, or made entirely without tobacco, of course cigarette makers add measured doses of nicotine extract in levels to achieve uniformity, and to maximize smoking...and "sin tax" revenues, again. That this U.S. court was, so to speak, "shocked", is pathetic. Everything the cigarette makers did was fully sanctioned by actual or de facto government approval.

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This does not even begin to address the body of this FDA legislation.

* Regarding the FDA power to lower nicotine levels...which will prompt more smoking, deeper inhaling, and more exposures to the toxic and carcinogenic non-tobacco elements: This would minimize any medicinal values of tobacco, leaving pretty much just the harmful characteristics.  One day in the future, the FDA may find “minimal value and excess harm”
from tobacco…the final excuse for Prohibition.

* While nothing prevents cigarette makers from passing millions of dollars of “user fees” along to its customers, no such fees are to be charged to the rest of the cigarette industry---pesticides, fertilizers, additives, or advertisers. Those entities would be less able to evade costs by passing them to end consumers.  The cigarette makers would not face any higher costs in those areas.

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Long time activist in areas relating to industrial toxics, media content and control, death penalty, Mumia Abu-Jamal, hemp prohibition, civil rights, insurance influence in public governing, religious influence in public governing, unsafe foods, (more...)

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