In 1964, a process began that was to lead, eventually, to the 'denormalisation' of a legal product and the leperisation of its users.
It wasn't initially supposed to happen that way. In fact, the producers and their public health detractors sat round a table to find a way of negating the newly-discovered health consequences of the popular product. Unfortunately, the initiative was shelved, or to put it more accurately, ruthlessly removed from history. Why? Because an alternative method of delivery had been invented.
The program was abruptly terminated, the team dismantled, the research records destroyed, and any trace of the program erased.
The tentacles of Big Pharma, in the course of perfecting transdermal nicotine and other nicotine delivery devices, stealthily took hold of public health, and pushed its authorities to pursue the policy of abolitionism, 'denormalization', demonization and fraud-based prohibition that we see today
Such was the birth of nicotine replacement therapy, and with it, the war for control of the nicotine market.
April 29th sees the launch of an alternative delivery system for chocolate, called Le Whif.
Help at hand for chocaholics: The inhaler that relieves cocoa cravings... for zero calories
It is the chocoholic's dream - a sweet treat that gives all the joy of chocolate without any of the calories.
Scientists have created an inhaler packed with tiny particles of chocolate.
A whiff or two gives all the pleasure of chocolate without any of the guilt, or so its designers from the respected Harvard University believe.
Could we be seeing the seeds of another struggle for control of a hugely profitable market by pharmaceutical interests?
Paranoid? Perhaps, but it has a whiff (puntime) of déjà vu about it, so let's look at the background of the 'designers', or the prime one anyway. Step forward Professor David Edwards of Harvard University.
Edwards shot to fame (and immense fortune) at the end of the 20th century, by inventing an inhaler for delivery of insulin. He is the founder of Advanced Inhalation Research, which just happens to be part-owned by US pharmaceutical companies, Alkermes (who specialise in addiction) and Pulmatrix. With the global chocolate market worth an estimated £75bn per annum, that's quite a bit of cash for pharma to get their teeth (or noses) into.
But chocolate is a completely different kettle of fish, I hear you scoff, it is enjoyed by millions and there are no health consequences to latch onto. It can't happen with our beloved cocoa bean.
Confident, are you? Remember that smoker prevalence in 1964 was around 43% of the population before pharma started their healthist jihad. The health impacts were ramped up to the ludicrous exaggeration we see today, so that just by being seen with an unlit cigarette is considered almost a sackable offence in some professions. In the US, the world centre for hysterical healthism, you can be fired for smoking in your home too.
Ah, but chocolate isn't that dangerous, it's not a major health issue, they'd never go after the humble Mars bar.
I beg to differ. Illiberal Labour morons such as Alan Johnson have already started the crusade with a vengeance.
Chocolate bars to be made smaller in Government anti-obesity drive
The following week, some Jock quack followed up with a proposal for a tax on chocolate, which was defeated by just two votes.
Scottish GPs have voted against a proposal for chocolate to be taxed in the same way as alcohol and cigarettes to tackle increasing levels of obesity.
Dr David Walker, a GP in Lanarkshire, warned that chocolate had lost its status as a "treat" and had become a harmful addition for some people.
However, his motion calling for a tax on chocolate was defeated by two votes at a BMA conference in Clydebank.
The process has started. How long before 'Passive Chocolate Eating' rears its ugly head? Well, actually, there have already been the first signs of that angle of attack too.
Obesity 'contagious', experts say
The study looked at data collected over 32 years. Having a friend, sibling or spouse who is overweight raises a person's risk of being obese too, US researchers say.
All of a sudden, Le Whif sounds like a cracking future revenue stream for big pharma.
It's all in place. The determination of government to 'crack down' on chocolate. The 'addiction' must be tackled. The 'guilt' has being identified and is being played upon by the manufacturers of Le Whif. The 'cravings' can be alleviated by this ingenious device, backed by pharmaceutical might and will, if past behaviour is to be judged, result in production of volumes of junk science to back their alarmism.
The rewards are there to be harvested. According to the Telegraph article,
Each canister costs £1.50 and can be reused several times.
Le Whif will be available to buy from April 29.
Let the denormalisation of chocolate commence.