Monday 3 March 2014

Resent Ignorant EU Interference? Please Sign Here Then

I have added a new link to the sidebar to the right which I hope you will all consider clicking through and signing (and sharing widely).

The European Free Vaping Intiative is a clever Europe-wide attempt to force the EU to rethink their dumb and counter-productive stance on e-cigs.

We've heard weasel words from the tobacco control industry about how they believe e-cigs are useful but that, you know, they just need a teensy-weensy bit of regulation, that's all. Well, as I've mentioned previously, the terms of the TPD are not just a little bit of regulation - instead, they will ban all of the most effective forms of vaping and only leave the ones which don't pose a threat to the pharmaceutical industry less effective ones.

It's the result of stunning ignorance on the part of the EU - fomented by rent-seeking tobacco control industry lobbyists, natch - and it is this ignorance that the EFVI seeks to redress.

Before you go all glassy-eyed, this is NOT a petition. As I understand it, EU rules state that if a movement collects a million signatures from EU member states, with at least seven reaching a threshold based on percentage of overall population, the EU will be compelled to listen to further evidence on the subject from those behind the initiative.

Considering that the EU reacted to the revolutionary phenomenon of e-cigs in the cack-handed and illiterate way that they did, they sure as shit need to be given a stiff talking to by people who - unlike the politicians and wonks in Brussels - actually know something about the subject, so this is a worthy cause.

Don't believe me? Well, why not take it from a sleb, 'cos Channel 4's resident Doc is on board.

The signatures need to be collected by November 25th this year, so there is plenty of time to get the word around, but the earlier it is signed and shared the more people may see it in time.

The UK's targeted quota is 54,750 signatures, of which just under 10% have been collected as I write. Finland and Germany are already well on schedule to reach their targets as can be seen from regularly updated progress statistics here. And here's a heads up to Irish fellow jewel robbers. You only have 191 of a required 9,000 so get moving will ya'? I reckon it wouldn't take more than a couple of porter-fuelled weekends in Temple Bar to have it done and dusted, for Chrissakes!

You can read all about the initiative here or, if you're in a hurry, the shortened version here. You can also follow on Facebook and Twitter.

But mainly, please add your signature and also encourage others to do the same whether it be by word of mouth, email, website, blog, noticeboard, loudhailer, smoke signals, pigeon post, Chinese whispers, nudge-nudge-wink-wink or global syndicated TV show.

You don't need to be a smoker or vaper, just an EU citizen who would like - at least this once - for the EU to have their daft, unthinking rules exposed and challenged for the objectionable nonsense that they are.

Now wouldn't that be a thing, eh?

UPDATE: Via Beki, here's another way of getting the word out. Print off some of these and just, I dunno, leave them lying around where random strangers with a smartphone might find them.


nisakiman said...

And what about the ban on menthol cigarettes, DP? And the utterly pointless mandating of even larger medico-porn pictures on the packs? And the continued ban on snus? And the banning of packs of ten? And the banning of 'lipstick' (whatever they are) shaped packs? The TPD wasn't only an attack on e-cigs. The TPD was an attack on ALL smokers, not just vapers. So why are we smokers expected to support vapers while we watch our own products traduced with not a hint of support from the vaping community?

Don't misunderstand me, I think it's appalling what is being mooted for e-cigs, but this whole affair seems to be somewhat extremely one sided to me.

Simon Cooke said...

Job done - will put on the blog

dave/r said...

i agree with you about all thats going on but sorry i can not sign as i am not an eu citizen i am british (welsh) and all ways will be no matter what they say

Dragonmum said...

It's true what the man said! I was a smoker for 60+ years - but for dire health problems I would not have switched and but for the e-cig I would surely have been in my box by now. A lot of folk hate Big Tobacco - I don't; because they didn't hold a gun to my head, I chose to smoke. That is what this is all about, pure and simple, the right to choose. We know the odds, we place our bets.
Vapers are for the most part ex-smokers who learned a lot from being treated as lepers, and we just can't allow it to happen again. If we can make inroads into the arrogance of our "masters" maybe they'll see that they just can't ban away regardless - flying in the face of all science - and expect to get away with it. We cannot allow them to continue eroding our freedoms because no-one can predict what they'll pick on next. So vapers are organising all across the EU and the US and people are free to support us or not - we hope they do but again, it's a matter of choice. At least we are prepared to man the barricades until they prise the e-cigs from our cold, dead hands.

Lollylulubes said...

1 billion smokers are forecast for early deaths this century; 50% below the age of 60 so, true or not, dodgy tobacco studies or not, we ALL need to try and guard against it. For people with lung cancer, emphysema, etc., vaping is the only viable alternative for those who can't manage or don't want to stop smoking. We vapers are, if you like, smokers in recovery and if this defacto ban comes to fruition, a large portion will return to tobacco and many smokers, who would have switched, won't be able to. The rest of us will be forced to become black market criminals, just for protecting our own health, as a result of so called protective EU Treaties being contravened by a bunch of greedy and/or ignorant, shortsighted cretins.

So we aren't just fighting for ourselves, Nisakiman, we're also battling for all smokers, now and in the future, to have access to effective and efficient superior ecigs, in a format of their choice, should they wish to switch. But we can't be all things to all men; for those who are active there's just too much to do. We all have to battle our opponents, propaganda, apathy and the complete blissful ignorance of many regarding the issues we're facing but, in order to do this, more people who are aware need to get off their backsides, get some fire in their bellies and stop expecting others to sort it for them.

As a non tobacco, smokeless product, ecigs had no place in the TPD but, for
smokers, it's a different animal with some different obstacles to overcome. However, unlike vapers who are an industry damaging, expensive pain in the ass for them, at least smokers have Big T onside, they fund rather than pose a
major threat to tobacco tax revenues, Big P and the careers and grants of those with their grubby fingers in the coffers. Smokers aren't facing impossible to implement restrictions, or being denied the usual diverse range, the best quality or the quantity of cigarettes, or having them made useless for 30% by cutting the nicotine content by two thirds and there's an easy workaround for the menthol issue.

Neither will there be the loss of hundreds of businesses and far more jobs. The snus ban is another travesty based on the years of evidence supporting its efficacy and safety but, packs of ten, gory pictures which often appeal to teenagers and lipstick shaped packs (whatever they are) won't stop you being able to smoke the cigarettes you choose. It is not my intention to be trite when I say I wish vapers only had those issues from this TPD. There are far more smokers in this world than vapers and if you instigated a similar movement, I would certainly happily add my support; to do otherwise would make me a hypocrite and no better than the ANTZ. I hope smokers will support us, if only to ensure a viable option when or if ever it's required.

I totally agree with Dick; the bigger picture being that the powers that be are on a roll, so this should be just the start of citizens fighting back against what will otherwise become suffocating control and submission in many areas. As someone recently said, 1984 was a work of fiction, not an instruction manual!

theprog said...

Why would you offer support to a smokers' movement whilst claiming that over 1 billion smokers may be facing an early grave and that the only solution is to vape instead of smoke? Surely, the main point of your post is to discourage smoking and promote vaping.

Dragonmum said...

I suspect that you are not getting the message - this is about the freedom to choose. I would support the freedom to eat as much sugar as you like (that looks to be next on the list) even though it is my opinion that it is not a good thing and has bad health consequences, it is your right to choose whether to consume it or not. It isn't my business. This is moving from a Nanny State to a Fascist State and some of us have to say "No". So far and no further.

Crossbow said...

Smoking is bad for you - this isn't spin, it is true (it is also true that the risks are vastly exaggerated by many who either don't follow the science or are ideologically motivated).
Vaping is smoking that isn't (significantly) bad for you, hence vapers are evangelical about it being a better choice. The choice of word is an indication of how most feel - they are not ex smokers, but smokers who have changed to a different delivery method for nicotine.

The key word is choice - almost all vapers (and I've been one for 5 years now, so I've had plenty of exposure) would support people's choice to smoke, if they want to. They would also support other non-ecig nicotine sources such as snus.

Using nicotine is a choice, and one that it should be up to the individual to make, not one that is forced on them, be it by the constant whining of prohibitionists, the heavy hand of taxation, or prohibition itself.

So if you want to smoke, smoke - most vapers will support that choice (but you should really vape it is better in every way :P )

Lady Beki Jane said...

Thank you for the link - the idea is to get them up on notice boards in general and in garages and other places where ejuice is sold. It was the best I could do from behind a keyboard.

nisakiman said...

DP, I hear what you say, and I broadly agree with you; what I find annoying about this issue is (as theprog pointed out a little earlier), that in their efforts to avoid vaping falling into the clutches of Tobacco Control the e-cig lobby is digging our hole deeper by endorsing and promoting the outlandish claims of TC.

From the linked site:

Vapers made an adult, responsible and private decision when they chose
this young but very effective alternative that made possible for them
to leave or ease up a deadly habit that claims hundreds of thousands of
lives of EU citizens each and every year.

"...a deadly habit that claims hundreds of thousands of
lives of EU citizens each and every year." is pure TC hyperbole.

Yes, we know that smoking is not good for you, and that it can exacerbate some diseases; indeed, it may well be responsible for a number of people dying a couple of years earlier than they might, had they not smoked. Perhaps even thousands. But that is not by any means the same as baldly asserting that smoking 'claims hundreds of thousands of lives every year'.

We all know (or should know by now) that these figures, these 'hundreds of thousands' trotted out by the TC fraternity are arrived at by using highly dubious methods.

"Ninety eight years old and died of a heart attack? Did he ever smoke in his life, if only for a couple of months when he was twenty? Yes? Ok, that's another 'smoking related' death to add to the roster."

"What did he die of? Gangrene? Did he smoke? Yes? Right, add him to the roster."

"Died of an aneurysm? Smoker? Add him to the roster..."

In fact, just about any smoker who dies, regardless of cause of death or age gets added to the 'smoking related death' figures

And we all know that there is no disease exclusive to smokers, and that most diseases are multifactorial, making it difficult, if not impossible to pinpoint any single reason for a person's death. So the 'hundreds of thousands of avoidable deaths' is just a soundbite out of the Tobacco Control propaganda book. It is meaningless.

It may seem to make the vapers message have greater merit, more impact, but it is ultimately at tobacco smokers expense. It would not have been so difficult to write that manifesto without trampling over the very valid objections of smokers to the TC claims of morbidity.

Vapers may well support freedom of choice for all smokers, but by actively endorsing what are patently false claims by TC, and by extension increasing the pressure on smokers is not what I would call helpful. It looks more to me like climbing over those trying to get to the lifeboat in order to save ones own skin.

Junican said...

I have already signed via a link elsewhere.

I accept what nisakiman says. There is an awful lot of anti-smoking rhetoric on vaper sites. Here is a quote from one which I read only yesterday:

"Of course it will be irritating to have photos of diseased lung tissue on your e-cig package. But of course you know that it’s a picture of what your lungs would have looked like if you had not switched to e-cigarettes."

I drew the author's attention to Frank Davis's 'black lung post'.

I think that vapers have to be careful about believing Tobacco Control's propaganda. Take Lollylulubs's statement:

"1 billion smokers are forecast for early deaths this century; 50% below the age of 60 so, true or not, dodgy tobacco studies or not, we ALL need to try and guard against it."

I don't know where he/she got that piece of propaganda from, but let me just show you a graph from Doll's Doctors Study:

Junican said...

I couldn't find a way to carry on after posting the pic, so I'll continue as a reply!
What do you see at the age of 60?
About 20% of the heaviest smokers had died. 12% of light smokers had died and also 8% of non smokers had died. Further, one must know that Doll started this study in 1950, when the majority of his subjects would have been smoking un-tipped, full strength, tar-filled cigarettes. At 70, some 45% of the heaviest smokers had died, which means, of course that 55% were still going strong. Why? Also, at that age, 18% of non smokers were dead. Why? Also, of considerable importance, once old age started to take its toll, smokers and non smokers were dying at the same rate. That is shown by the parallel nature of the lines.

But I very much support vapers in their stand. The EU tyranny must be halted one way or another and soon.

theprog said...

'but you should really vape it is better in every way'

With respect, as a smoker and occasional vaper I have to disagree...

Sam Duncan said...

Not a vaper, never a smoker, but signed. The best of British (and Irish, and Dutch, and...) to them. And I heartily agree with Dick's response to nisakiman. If there was an ECI against the entire TPD, I'd sign up to that too. But there isn't.

Dave/r, I sympathise - I don't consider myself an EU citizen either - but they think we are, and they've given us a teeny-tiny microscopic sliver of power as a consequence. Use it against them.

theprog said...

I know about freedom to chose, been fighting for it for nearly seven years. Besides, my earlier post wasn't really about choice, or lack of. Just pointing out that you can't always have it both ways. Unfortunately, and perhaps intrinsically, elements of vapeworld don't see it. Understandable, given that many vapers are ex smokers and probably couldn't give a damn about smokers freedoms so long as they're immune to TC.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Nice one, Sam, and please share too. :)

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yes, we know very well that tobacco control has pumped out a lot of exaggeration, misinformation and blatant lies over the years, but the purpose of those was indeed propaganda. Propaganda has been proven to work extremely well for a very long time, so - although it's irritating - I can understand why many believe it.

The encouraging thing is that vapers are increasingly realising how evil, self-serving, duplicitous and manipulative the tobacco control industry is and are starting to understand that you can't trust a word they say. It doesn't happen overnight but it is starting to happen.

Of course, if we're going to castigate some vapers for believing that stuff, we have to also condemn smokers, perhaps more strongly, for also believing it. Because there are tons of them all over the country who can't be arsed to find out if the tools of their own bullying are true or not. That type generally don't speak up much ... they just say 'baaaa'. ;)

Dick_Puddlecote said...

No problem. It is a good idea - love the QR code!

Lady Beki Jane said...

They aren't my originals - @andieoakley is the one to praise as they're his design, I got permission before posting and don't want to steal credit.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Top comment, mate, especially the first para which articulates my view perfectly.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

I shall have to track this guy down and stalk him for know-how. Thanks.

Crossbow said...

Fair enough - we are allowed an opinion of our own (for another few years :P)

Dick_Puddlecote said...

If anyone is still active here, can you please let me know if you can see the sidebar logo for EFVI? Someone has said it's missing though it looks fine from where I am.

Crossbow said...

I see it in the blog post, but not in the sidebar

Crossbow said...

Text is there, but no banner

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Ta, I'll have a look tomorrow. :)

nisakiman said...

It's there from where I'm standing, DP, in full technicolour! :)

nisakiman said...

Mind you, due to the peculiarities of blogspot, I get the local version. i.e.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Crikey, this is threatening to be complicated. I expect my resizing t caused the problem in some browser or other.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Stoppit! {head explodes} :)

nisakiman said...

And I use firefox, if that makes any difference.

Gordon Cu9tBrownArse said...

EU is SHITE run by CU9TS!!