Sunday, 25 January 2015

Redefining "Misinformation"

The BBC outraged a couple of tobacco control industry execs on Thursday. The Beeb's crime was to invite Imperial Tobacco's Axel Gietz onto Radio 4's Today programme to give an opposing view of plain packaging.

You can get an idea of what Gietz said from this Sky News coverage - it was perfectly reasonable and well argued, but CRUK's Robert West didn't like it one little bit.

I found this quite astounding. After a campaign where the BBC may as well have been a business partner of tobacco control in pumping out plain packs propaganda without question (by contrast, Simon Clark often had to beg to have Forest rebuttals included), here they were admirably - albeit belatedly - offering an alternative view (as they damn well should) but it was seen as heresy by West!

I was driving that morning but saw his tweet after a drop and had to point out that it shouldn't be a surprise that the BBC was acting impartially.

The irony in that response is so thick you'd struggle to cut it with a chainsaw, wouldn't you?

It is the tobacco control industry which holds the levers of power. They have dim-witted politicians eating out of their hands and a supranational unelected WHO dictating what national governments can and cannot do. By contrast, the tobacco industry isn't even allowed to raise an objection without state-funded prohibitionists screaming foul.

The obese bubblegum-phobic was equally pissed off.

For "factually wrong", read "not keeping to the script we wrote for this piece of legislative fantasy". They both know very well that the evidence for plain packaging is less than wafer thin, in fact it's a crock. And as for no-one being invited to challenge, this has been the modus operandi of tobacco control since the 1970s! They actively run away from debate, strain every sinew to stifle opposition, and pretend that everyone who opposes them must have been paid to do so.

What's more, they have some outrageous neck for accusing others of being shifty on the issue of plain packaging. I've attempted to condense all their disgraceful abuses into a shortish list before.
The often fraudulent abuses of process, democracy and common decency are too numerous to list in full, but just to remind you of a few highlights: 
Attempting to rig the consultation; producing literature containing bald-faced lies to MPs; enthusiastically encouraging corrupt multiple signatures; and attempting to influence government to exclude any consultation responses they disagreed with and then trying to hide the evidence. Along with inviting two zealous supporters of plain packaging to review the evidence, including a far-left lunatic who simply despises marketing of any product, before producing an impact assessment document which the Regulatory Policy Committee rightly considered shoddy. This without mentioning shovelling taxpayer cash to vested interests to lobby government with, making demonstrably false claims, and blatantly misrepresenting the results of their own research
Like I say, this is by no means an exhaustive list, far from it.
To accuse anyone else of 'misinformation' or being 'factually wrong' is quite stunning when the entire tobacco control plain packs campaign relied on lying, gerrymandering, evidence-rigging, junk science, suppression of dissent, economic terrorism, political chicanery and institutionalised corruption.

Now, the tobacco control industry have this thing they call the 'scream test'. Deborah Arnott described it here.
"Why would the tobacco industry and its allies be so vehemently opposed to plain packaging if they weren't so frightened that plain packaging would work?"
This is 'misinformation' in and of itself, as Snowdon and others have explained very well in the past. It's a con trick employed simply to convince anti-smoking obsessives and the generally stupid.

But, on Thursday, it could have been re-written thus:
"Why would the tobacco control industry and its allies be so vehemently opposed to Axel Gietz on Radio 4 if they weren't so frightened that the truth may get out?"
Roll on the court cases. I hope the tobacco industry sting the government for billions.


For an example of usual BBC fare, see this News24 interview with Forest's Simon Clark and watch out for the snort of derision when the term "denormalisation" is mentioned.

West and McKee doth protest too much, the BBC don't need any help whatsoever from their slew of anti-smoking mouth-breathers. Denormalisation has been a proud stated policy of the tobacco control industry for around a decade now yet the BBC presenter derided it as if Clark was a conspiracy theorist.

World-renowned news source? Ha!


JLTrader said...

What I find astounding when I really think about it is how far this lunacy has come. Since the first SG report in 1965 there hasn't been any real progress about how smoking is supposed to cause almost every illness known to man. It's still the same lies, damned lies and statistics that Doll started in 1950. I think everyone should try to look at the bigger picture and notice how absurd this whole thing is. We have the same facts as they had when they were talking about a small 'caution' message on the side of the pack in 1965 and here we are talking about covering the whole pack in grisly medical porn. It's baffling.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Interesting point. As you say, if anything the 'threat' from tobacco should have been lessened since the 60s considering there are far fewer smokers, far more benign tobacco, and far better education on health effects.

Of course, there are far more numerous anti-smoking professionals and a massive avalanche of cash for people to make a career out of being an anti-smoker. I dunno, perhaps there might be a link? ;)

RooBeeDoo said...

That they even have a 'scream test' is the biggest irony of all.

Vinny Gracchus said...

It seems the "Scream Test" is scoring an "own goal." Tobacco control lies are being exposed and they don't like it. It's hard to keep the masses in thrall when they find out the truth. A concerted effort to disclose all tobacco control lies and manipulation is needed now.

jude said...

The rise in vaping is causing the screaming of the ANTZ to become hysterical. They are being hoisted by their own lies in regards to tobacco smoking, SHS and the nonsensical THS, and are being forced to justify their stance against something that is not tobacco smoking. I've seen more exposure of the lies and corruption by the tobacco control industry since vaping became a thing, than in all the years I was a smoker.

On the surface these pinch mouthed puritans, liars and bullies, may appear to be in control, but below the water line they are paddling like mad. We, vapers and smokers, need to keep up the pressure and keep exposing the garbage they come out with.

Sam Duncan said...

"Why would the tobacco industry and its allies be so vehemently opposed
to plain packaging if they weren't so frightened that plain packaging
would work?"

Because it's a gift to smugglers and forgers, obviously. Which is the real reason tobacco control wants it: remove the branding guarantee, make smoking even more genuinely dangerous, then they can start planting stories in the media about criminal tobacco gangs roaming the streets peddling untested concoctions in apparently legitimate packaging to an unsuspecting public.

Arnott must think we were born yesterday.

What the.... said...

Excellent summary, DP.

Tobacco Control is populated by the megalomaniacal, the sadistic, the neurotic, the narcissistic, the bigoted, the incompetent; they’re self-serving pathological liars. Most extraordinary in this deranged mash is that these fraudsters portray themselves as the “mythological good”….. the “righteous
ones”….. battling the “evil” tobacco industry. They never address any pertinent issues. They simply re-frame any circumstance into “Us vs Them”: Why are “they” – the “evil” tobacco industry – getting any air time? Only “we” – the mythological good” should ever be heard.

It’s truly pathetic and has been going on for decades.

What the.... said...

It’s a standard smear routine/tactic by the moralizing zealots and their faithful disciples.

This from Simon Chapman’s “The Lung Goodbye” [how to do propaganda], presented at the [antismoking] 5th World Conference on Smoking & Health in 1983:

“Such a list could be added to considerably, but most entries would be characterized by being somehow cast in a mythological good versus evil battle in an arena observed by mass numbers of people. The good (health/clean air/children) versus evil (cancer/uncaring, callous industry) dimension is the ineluctable bottom line in the whole issue and a rich reservoir for spawning a great deal of useful social drama, metaphor, and symbolic politics that is the stuff of ‘news value’ and which is almost always to the detriment of the industry.” p.11 (see Godber Blueprint)

This entire “Us vs Them” framework was also contrived by the fanatics
decades ago. Having cast themselves in the role of the “mythological good”
(natch), the zealots are always right and benevolent. Anyone who dares disagree with them is always wrong and part of some “evil” tobacco industry
“conspiracy”. It’s all for manipulative, “theatrical” effect – although there
are some in the antismoking movement that believe they are “god-like” - and has been quite successfully used for the last three decades on an essentially superficial/gullible political class, media, and public. Disagree with the fanatics and you’ll be accused of being an emissary of the “evil” tobacco industry, a promoter of cancer, and a child corrupter/killer. The zealots and their financial partners (government and Pharma) must have regular belly laughs at how all too easy the brainwashing has been.

The constant moralizing finger-waggers are moral frauds.

What the.... said...

Some of the well-paid, whining liars of Tobacco Control – Bobbie Pest and
Marty McPee.

truckerlyn said...

The way I see their 'horror' pics that are supposed to scare people silly, is the more you are faced with them the less you see them until you don't see them at all! Kind of makes them a bit pointless really. I am sure there must be some scientific evidence of this effect!

truckerlyn said...

"The constant moralizing finger-waggers are moral frauds"

I would go as far as to say not only moral frauds, but Criminal Fraudsters too!

JLTrader said...

wow, that BBC presenter comes across as a complete plonker. He keeps asking, 'why object to plain packaging'. Idiots like these should have all the products they use, from the toothpaste they use in the morning, to the car they drive to work, to the hamburger they have for lunch and so on covered in grisly 'plain packaging'. Maybe then it would get through his thick head why people object to 'plain packaging'.

Frank J said...

My God!! Inspiring isn't the word.

jude said...

Smokers who don't like the gruesome photoshopped images will simply chuck the packets in the bin and find something less ugly to keep their smokes or tobacco in. Teenagers here collect all the different packets, and older smokers make a joke of them.

DP said...

Dear Mr Puddlecote

"Roll on the court cases. I hope the tobacco industry sting the government for billions."

Unfortunately it will be the taxpayers who will foot the bill.

Much better to arraign the anti-tobacco fraudsters for misconduct in a public office, fraud and obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception and any other crimes they have committed, then suing them whilst they kick their heels in jail.


Norbert Zillatron said...

I saw that happening a long time ago, when they started to plaster the boxes with those stupid propaganda texts. Children (probably not smoking) approached me and asked for my empty box for their collections.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

If the govt is landed with a £12bn bill, I'd expect retribution to save political blushes. One enquiry is all it would take for their fraudulent behaviour to be exposed.

Then just send the bill to pharma and cut off all grants until they can behave like civilised human beings.

Entropy said...