Monday, 31 October 2016

The Absurdity Of Public Health In Two Responses

Back in 2013, a bunch of tobacco control clowns punched the air and hugged each other at having struck a blow against the 'tobacco industry' after a long drawn-out debate in Brussels.

They had resisted common sense, eschewed evidence, dismissed personal testimony - instead relying on their old friends arrogance, ignorance, prejudice and junk science - to begin the process of what we now know as the EU Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) regulations on e-cigarettes.

They didn't understand the products; they didn't understand the consumers; they didn't understand the market; and they still, after decades of making a whole load of ill-gotten bucks out of them, didn't understand smokers. But they regulated anyway, because that's what state-funded parasites do for a living.

The entire TPD is a dog's breakfast but the articles relating to vaping just illustrate how barking mad and detached from reality the 'public health' industry is. In the period since the TPD was inflicted on Europe, the scientific consensus has shifted and it is now only a tiny sub-set of shrill, deranged, soon-to-be irrelevant, ideological outliers who still cannot bear to admit that e-cigs are a beneficial step forward for what their profession has always 'claimed' to be about. That being health, by the way, in case you were struggling to guess.

Nothing encapsulates this more than one particular response by ECITA to the UK's advertising authority's consultation on e-cig advertising under the TPD which closed today.  In short, just about all advertising has been banned thanks to the aforementioned ignorant tobacco control clowns, all that's now being discussed is how far the ridiculous blackout should go.

Here is an extract from Question 12:
CAP considers that the following types of claims and activities are likely to be promotional in nature and therefore prohibited: 
-  descriptive language that goes beyond objective, factual claims, for example the use of adjectives 
12. Do you agree that the above types of claims are likely to be promotional in nature and should be prohibited? If not please explain why.
Yes, adjectives. They are actually talking about banning adjectives! And ECITA's response?
[A]lthough 'flavours' are considered to be a matter of fact, we are unable to conceive of a way in which a flavour can be described without any such description becoming promotional. This would seem to be an effective prohibition on non-descriptive flavour names. Consider a product sold by one of our members – Amber Blend. The name is suggestive of a tobacco flavour, but this is not explicit, and it is unlikely that someone seeking a tobacco flavour would purchase it hoping it would meet their needs. The current description is “Our Amber Blend e-liquid is a big hit among tobacco e-juice fans, it’s a light, sweet Virginian flavour.”. However, “a big hit” would clearly be considered promotional, and removing the adjectives from the line “it’s a light, sweet Virginian flavour” yields “it's a flavour”. The overall effect of bowdlerising this description is therefore:  
“Our Amber Blend e-liquid, it's a flavour”  
This does not seem likely to help consumers pick a suitable product.  
Indeed, since in this context the use of 'like' would be as an adjective, it is impossible to say that an apple e-liquid “tastes like apples”, nor would it possible to describe it as “apple flavoured”. On the other hand, unless it was flavoured with a natural extract from apples, it would not be possible to describe a flavour as “tasting of apples”, since this would not be factual.  
Given that taste is very much a subjective sense, providing useful descriptions of flavours would seem important to help with customer satisfaction, not only from a business perspective, but also in terms of helping consumers avoid reverting to smoking. However, writing an adjective-free, factual, non-promotional, description of a flavour would seem to be a broadly impossible task.
You could be forgiven for thinking that ECITA might have been so exasperated by such a question that they were playing it for laughs, I mean how can anyone possibly take such a staggeringly stupid proposal seriously? But no, this is a proper response to a UK consultation from an authority which is being deadly serious.

Now, I'm sure you've read lists of absurd laws and regulations from times of yore - often from American towns and counties - about which we can scoff at the stupidity of our ill-educated forebears handing power to such primitive, knee-jerking knuckle-draggers. But this is legislation which is actually being installed now, in 2016, not 1916. And not just being discussed here but in 28 member states of the EU covering a population of around half a billion people.

And the TPD won't be updated for another decade, so Europe is stuck with the ignorance and insane stupidity of those ignorant and bigoted tobacco control lunatics in 2013 for a long time to come.

By way of comparison, I thought you might be interested in ASH's response to the same question. Do Arnott and her state-funded pals believe that adjectives should be banned? Their reply is not quite as detailed, but makes their position quite clear. It says simply, in underlined capital letters ...
Sometimes, those who the state pays to rule over our lives in the 21st Century make the Luddites of the 19th Century appear progressive and forward-thinking.


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