It's been an 'I told you so' kind of week.
OK, admittedly the advancement of the 'ban on all alcohol advertising' propaganda wasn't difficult to predict unless you're a drinks industry appeaser with your cranium firmly planted in the desert. Even deluded local CAMRA officials might have got the idea by now.
However, I have been derided in the past for suggesting that the anti-smoking battle isn't about health at all, merely a corporate takeover of how nicotine is sold.
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.
It's never been about anything else. Tobacco v Pharma, that's it. The real deal, the rumble in the corporate jungle. The world is their stage and smoking bans merely players.
Individual choice and liberty are quickly subjugated in the face of a £50bn global nicotine market.
Cancer Research UK, that austere and well-respected charity, are in the forefront of reducing the harmful effects of smoking. They trumpet regularly of their wish for a smokefree world. They foster a multitude of web-sites promoting campaigns devoted to eradicating cancer, the latest of which is to hide tobacco from view. That's how comprehensive their research is. Meticulous.
They haven't been too successful in finding a cure so far, but as they are not averse to spending £250,000 on adverts during Corrie to get women to run around a field scraping up £60 for them, I'm sure it won't take them much longer. 107 years isn't much to worry about in the grand scheme of things.
They do need every penny though, so dig deep. You could even try donating a percentage of your company's profits to the cause.
UK Electronic Cigarette company cheapelectroniccigarettes.co.uk are today launching a scheme which will see 10p of every product sold being donated to Cancer Research UK.
Owner Michael Kitt stated, “We sell a lot of electronic cigarettes all over the world and feel that it is only right that we also support a charity which has the same vision as us – creating a smoke free environment around the world by offering clean smoking without tobacco, tar and the thousands of other chemicals found in traditional cigarettes.”
What's not to like?
Cancer Research UK Decline Donations From UK Electronic Cigarette Company
Online PR News – 08-September-2009 – On the 31st August 2009 cheapelectroniccigarettes.co.uk announced that they would be donating 10p of every product to Cancer Research UK. This was done, not only to show that they are good people but to also support a charity who they believed shared the same vision of creating a smoke free environment around the world by offering an alternative to tobacco smoking without the tobacco, tar and the thousands of other chemicals found in traditional cigarettes.
But to the shock of the business owner Cancer Research jumped at the chance to disassociate themselves with the scheme by utilising the skills of Neha Singhal, Volunteer Paralegal.
In an email written not to cheap Electronic Cigarettes but to the Manufacturers NUCIG, he wrote 'Please find attached a snap shot of the website where it is being claimed that you are donating 10p of every cigarette sold to Cancer Research UK and a press release dated 31st August also claiming the same thing. Please remove reference to our name from the website and also please make sure that no such press releases are announced in the future.'
Oh dear. It looks like CRUK have deemed e-cig manufacturers as the wrong suppliers of nicotine. So much so that they decline donations in favour of paying legal fees to stop the money coming in.
Nicotine replacement therapy is only acceptable if provided by CRUK's preferred partners. Electronic cigarette companies are not in the club, not on the list, and ain't coming in.
How very odd. Well, not really.
Those who smoke are quite welcome to bust a gut on the Race for Life, raising funds which CRUK will use to bend them over and make them take it very roughly, but trying to help people give up smoking in practice, and donating to CRUK in the process, before pharma companies can design and market their own e-cig, is a big no-no.
Giving up the fags without CRUK's pharma chums getting a few shekels out of it? Bad form. There is to be only one nicotine industry, and pharmaceutical companies don't like competition.
All about health? Please.