In the meantime, how about some appropriate reading matter for the evening?
As mentioned over at Taking Liberties, MPs had an opportunity to hear about the quite shameful shenanigans perpetrated by the Department of Health and ASH in advance of the vote to ban tobacco displays. How many actually bothered to turn up and learn how they were duped we won't know till later.
However, the evidence is pretty damning, as I mentioned in September.
The report to be presented is an updated version of The Dark Market [pdf], which was compiled after a huge amount of internal DH correspondence had to be released following a hail of FOI requests. If you haven't already, I highly recommend you read it with a cushion under your jaw for health and safety reasons.
I'm sure there will have been retailer representatives there. They are still smarting over the fact that their input to the 'public consultation' was entirely air-brushed from the official report to government.
And all to bring in a measure which has been trumpeted as a success ... despite the fact that in every country in which it has been implemented, youth smoking rates have soared, and cigarette consumption overall has increased. In Thailand, the measure was such a disaster that it has recently been abandoned, and the public health approach been drastically revised. For more on that, read here.
What a mess, eh? And, as I understand it, just one MP (a Lib Dem) is standing stubbornly in the way of a rethink of this daft legislation, which was rushed through in the dying days of Brown's government.
Right. I'm off. But I'm sure this subject will pop up again in the next day or so.
UPDATE: Just as I was hitting 'publish', I received word of how many MPs were in attendance to hear today's evidence ... ONE.
UPDATE: The updated report, as presented at Westminster today, is available to view HERE. It might look bad at first glance, but it's far worse than that.