Thursday, 22 March 2012

Official: Americans Are Stupid

Prepare to be baffled by the scientific hieroglyphics below.

Was that a bit too difficult for you to understand? If so, you must be American.
[Judge Jane Branstetter] Stranch found that the text warnings required since 1984 require "a college reading level" to understand and are probably not appropriate for youths and people with lower reading levels and weren't reaching much of the intended audience. The law requiring the graphic warnings corrects that problem, Stranch wrote.

"A warning that is not noticed, read, or understood by consumers does not serve its function," Stranch wrote. "The new warnings rationally address these problems by being larger and including graphics."
Apparently then, the ability to read and comprehend simple sentences - according to the judge - only manifests itself in Americans once they have passed through college, as they need pictures to even begin to understand. They also manage to reach their graduation day without any clue that smoking is harmful, despite it being taught in America's - evidently pitiful - school system.

How very embarrassing for Americans that the courageous US tobacco control industry had no option than to push for this widespread ignorance of the American people to be revealed to the world.

Unless she's talking bollocks, of course.


Jay said...

In fairness, how is it any different from the UK's decision to do graphic health warnings with huge fonts?  Apparently, Brits are equally stupid, but it happened much, much earlier.  Americans are just now catching up.  :P


Jay said...

As for Jane Branstetter Stranch, she was nominated to be a federal judge by Obama, so that should help clear up any confusion as to her beliefs about Americans -- she probably hates them, and she probably really does believe that all Americans are stupid.  Secondly, amongst other things she specialised in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits.  So I guess that she's that kind of lawyer, chasing ambulances and stuff.  Curious work history, she has...

So yeah, she's probably Dreadful Deb's second-cousin or something.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

The difference being that we have no Constitutional right to free speech which was the basis of the earlier judgement blocking graphic warnings. As such, the decision rested with dense MPs who weren't required to have to dub the population stupid to get the law through.

It's bizarre that these people are prepared to condemn their own education system as not fit for purpose just to get pictures - which are proven to have no effect - on cigarette packs.  

Carpe Zytha said...

I recall an advert in Viz. it went along the lines of "Smoke Tabs", then in smaller letters "Government health warning : Don't smoke tabs"

Junican said...

American justice is very strange. Where else would the judge's subjective, personal opinion of the ability of people over the age of eighteen to read be a legitimate reason for a judgement?  

JuliaM said...

Dick, I think someone might be impersonating you at my blog. Unless it is you?

David said...

Meanwhile.....Bloomberg in New York, before he left for this week's world conference on tobacco and health in Singapore to make his announcement. "It is a scourge all over the world – more so in the places where education isn't up to the standards that it is in the developed world, and the tobacco companies certainly try to target people who are poor and uneducated in their advertisements. I don't think there is any question about that."  

David said...

I guess a link would be useful...

Jay said...

I can't argue with that -- you can get arrested for making a racist comment in this country (unless your an obese, stupid, hateful slag of a shadow minister for health ... ahem, Diane Abbot, ahem... then nothing happens to you and you get to have your pic taken with a plain pack (can I get arrested for calling her a hateful slag?)). 

I mean, there's the Magna Carta, but that essentially guarantees you the right to drive a herd of goats or sheep across Tower Bridge or something... could be useful, I suppose.  With enough goats, we could rule the world! 

There are, however, limits to free speech in America.  In fact, every year, that constitutional right to free speech is eroded further by those who seek to promote and legislate a particular agenda.  It takes years in court to overturn bad legislation that infringes constitutional rights, and even then, there's no guarantee that the Supreme Court (or any court for that matter) will even consider a case.  They get to pick and choose what matters they will hear.

So I don't think it's so bizarre that lunatics will condemn anything in order to further their agenda.  Happens every day, here in the UK, in America, in Australia...

Lyn Ladds said...

"A warning that is not noticed, read, or understood by consumers does not serve its function," Stranch wrote. "The new warnings rationally address these problems by being larger and including graphics."
First part, correct, second part, rubbish.
How many people actually take any notice of the warnings on cig packs anywhere in the world?  Very few, if any, I would guess, simply because when you see them everyday, you stop seeing them!  They are completely meaningless!
The same with pointless advice on matrix signs.  The past 2 nights I have driven from Worcester to Llanelli, picking up the M4 at Cardiff and the route has been flooded with matrix signs saying "Wear Your Seatbelt".
How pointless is that?  You either have it on or you don't.  If you don't are you going to try and put it on whilst driving along the motorway?  I would sincerely hope not!  Besides, nowadays very few people forget to put on their seatbelt, therefore those not using their seatbelt are probably more than aware of the fact, so won't take any notice of the signs, anyway!

Ultimately, however, when the sign actually says something useful, like the road ahead is closed, or there has been an accident ahead - people won't know about it, because by then they have stopped reading the signs!

All to do with human nature; if only these idiots would realise the force of human nature and realise that their pathetic little attempts to scare people into giving up smoking have no impact whatsoever.  The money spent on getting these petty little schemes implemented could and should have been far better spent on other things entirely, not wasted on trying to convince those who want to smoke to give up - it will never work unless the smoker, him/herself actually wants to give up and no amount of badgering will make a smoker want to give up, in many cases it has the completely opposite effect.

God, I wish someone would shoot the lot of these self righteous nannying idiots and put them out of their misery so we can get on with living our lives as we choose!

Beware of Geeks said...

Seawater contains sodium chloride.

Jay said...

 Nice. Don't forget dihydrogen oxide.

Via Dolorosa said...

Just a minute,anyone who still buys a packet of cigs with the English Language on it is a total prat.A complete and utter pillock.
Lets get serious,has anyone seen a graphic image of an aborted foetus
on a NHS Hospital Entrance or the dismembered remains of a terrorist attack victim.How about a tormented liver on a Bottle of Stella  or a bedraggled
kidney on a bottle of Johnny Walker.Lets throw in a few nasty graphics of
burning corpes of Afghan children courtesy of our dear American heroes.
Yep lets all sit seven nights a week ,safe and sound with East Enders,
x Factor , a glass of Horlicks, farting occasionally to break the monotony.Not long to go for the Fabian Paradise or should we say

nisakiman said...

" ...the ability to read and comprehend simple sentences - according to the
judge - only manifests itself in Americans once they have passed through

It's true. I can testify to that, as one who left school at 16 with two and a half 'O' levels. I've never understood the warnings on cigarette packs, and continue to smoke to this day.

Do you think I can maybe sue someone? I could do with a cash injection...

Mind you, McTear didn't have much luck on that score, so maybe not.

And as for sea water containing sodium chloride and dihydrogen oxide, that's terrible! Ye Gods, that sounds as bad as all the chemicals in SHS! I'll never go swimming again! The fish should be warned of the dangers of second-hand sea water. They should put warning labels on it!

Can I sue?

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Jay said...

apologies, it's dihydrogen monoxide...

nisakiman said...

 Details, details...

I copied and pasted - lazy, I know, but chemical compounds, and the knowledge thereof, were never my strong suit. :¬))

Yes, I saw that video, or one similar, some time ago. It illustrates just how easy it is to convince people that there is danger where none exists. Tobacco Control have been using the technique for ages. 4000 chemicals in SHS, for example. Or from the AGW mob, CO2 as a poison. (Carbon footprints? WTF? I thought we were carbon based life forms...)

Beware of Geeks said...

Shares can go up or down.

Michael McFadden said...

"It is a scourge all over the world – more so in the places where education isn't up to the standards that it is in the developed world,"

The standards under which high school graduates are unable to read and understand a single sentence of three to ten words?

No wonder the world's in trouble!


Lyn Ladds said...

Should be warning labels on the fish we eat too, as it is supposed to be so good for us, but if they are living in such a cesspit of chemical poisons (like you, my understanding of chemicals is next to nil but this dihydrogen monoxide stuff sounds really scary!) then how healthy and good for us are they really?

Then again, there is apparently arsnic in tap water, so hey, what is safe to consume these days?  Perhaps the government should just bite the bullet and ban everything!