Friday, 2 August 2013

Object To Control, Argue For Choice

Others have got there before me regarding the No Thank EU campaign, but the reason for action is best described by Snowdon here.
At some point in 2015-16, millions of Europeans are going to pop into their local shop and find that their usual brand of cigarettes, or pouch of rolling tobacco, is no longer available. Those who smoke menthol and slims will be told that the EU decided to ban them back in 2013. The packs will be covered in giant warnings covering three-quarters of their surface. The exact size and dimensions of the packaging and the cigarettes will have been dictated in Brussels. 
While the obesity warriors strive to make crisp packets and chocolate bars smaller, the Tobacco Products Directive aims to make packs of tobacco larger. While scientists recognise that Swedish snus is the world's least hazardous tobacco product, the EU will maintain its ban on it. 
None of this can be justified either on health grounds or on grounds of market harmonisation. As Angela Harbutt notes in this article, no EU country has even considered banning menthol. Nor has any EU government mandated 75 per cent graphic warnings, or demanded that cigarettes be exactly 7.5mm in diameter, or implemented any of the other three-in-the-morning ideas that the berks of Brussels have come up with.
Indeed. the proposed Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) is a first class example of pointless EU interference where none is sought or needed, and more control of the UK being assumed by Brussels.

Consider too that the ban on snus is being pushed through despite an overwhelming majority of responses throughout Europe being heavily opposed to it, and the UK government's input - and, by extension, the British people's - being bypassed altogether by the actions of Anna Soubry, as well documented here recently.

Some might say that is enough to describe the TPD as a corrupt document in itself, but it having been drawn up by a Maltese Commissioner under investigation for fraud and with allegations of misdeeds and nepotism following him around almost daily, should have ensured the whole thing was scrapped and looked at again. That it wasn't is shameful of the EU and further proof that Brussels welcomes democracy and transparency like the Pope welcomes an endorsement request from Durex.

So, if you haven't done so already, do have a good look round the new No Thank EU site and add your name to the petition, remembering to tick the box which generates a message to your MEP (which you can personalise, as I'd recommend). Do also share widely with friends via Facebook and Twitter as I'm sure most of them have no knowledge of any of this deeply flawed directive, and are blissfully unaware of the proposals to consign long-enjoyed menthol tobacco and "half an ounce of Old Holborn" to prohibition and the inevitable black market.


Bucko TheMoose said...

I keep telling every one about the TPD and the medical regulation of ecigs because no one has heard of it. It been news to everyone I've mentioned it to so far, even one chap who actually sells ecigs.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

It's astounding, isn't it, how we got to this point. So many laws from so many levels of legislators - local or international - that the public are largely unaware of what is legal and what is not from one day to the next.

Mark.S said...

The whole directive does read as something that if Baron Frankenstein had a blunderbuss while chasing a fly, it would have made more sense.. Hopefully the local MEP will at least listen without all this Thunderbirds hand movements.

truckerlyn said...

Perhaps they need people to start smoking more? If they can't by 10's many will buy 20's and then smoke 20 a day instead of 10 a day. The main reason people buy 10's is to help them cut down!

This whole business is a shambles run by charlatans, idiots and downright liars.

Jurie Botha said...

Although not an EU Citizen, it is only a matter of time before the decision taken filters to my own backyard.

I quit smoking in 2 days with an e-cig, and now enjoy my nicotine fix without 99% of the harm caused by tobacco smoke.

Note that I switched nicotine delivery method, my goal was never cessation of nicotine. It is absolutely ludicrous that the EU wants to regulate a consumer product as medicine. It is NOT a form of NRT, it is a safer alternative to smoking.

The TPD as it is now is counter-productive, and will increase the amount of smokers, as e-cig & snus users will have to go back to smoking.

Maybe that is the goal, maybe that is what the EU wants - to protect their tax revenue received from tobacco.

The message they are sending is that they - The EU Govt - couldn't care less about public health. That they are merely interested in protecting the interests of the tobacco and pharmaceutical industries.

Their approach is draconian, and if they think people don't see through the facade - they are sourly mistaken.

Sam Duncan said...

You might almost think that was the whole idea.