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Do smokers have rights?

I'm giving a presentation on smokers' rights this week.

In Cape Town.

Do smokers have rights? This is a rhetorical question, obviously, but I'd be interested to read your comments.

I'm also going to address the question:

Does the tobacco industry do enough to support the consumer? If not, what more could it do?

Answers, please ...

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Reader Comments (47)

In the lead-up to the smoking ban in Ireland, many commentators referred to their 'right to fresh air.' However, there is no law that guarantees such a right and not a single article in the Constitution about it either. The general public have a very hazy grasp of their rights, such as they are. There are specific laws around known deadly industrial chemicals but if you live beside a council landfill or city dump you will discover that you have no inherent right to fresh air.

Citizen's rights are typically "assumed" whether you smoke or not but your Government has neither the responsibility nor a duty of care to ensure that the air you breathe must be of a certain quality.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 11:57 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Mallon

Consumers have rights so tobacco consumers should have rights too to such things as brand recognition, price comparison and product information - all of which would be stolen if plain packaging is granted..

Smokers should have the right not to be discriminated against in employment or housing. Smokers should have the right to free association in public with other smokers and that doesn't have to infringe on an anti-smoker's right to that mythical "clean air".

Our right to be left alone in peace without harassment to enjoy a legitimate product with others who enjoy it, or are not bothered by it, starts where their nose ends.

And smokers also have a right to healthcare. They've paid NI contributions and they've paid tax on their product in many cases over a lifetime so to deny them care that may need at the end of their lives is not only churlish but downright discriminatory.

No, the tobacco company doesn't give us enough support. It should have fought the blanket ban harder, it should have fought the display ban, it should try and communicate with us via cards inside packs pointing consumers to support websites like Taking Liberties, Forest and others, and it should take legal action on our behalf to fight the scam of alleged "harm" caused by SHS and it should fund legal action where discrimination is used against smokers to stop them getting employment, housing or healthcare.,

And it must take legal action on our behalf if moves to stop us using outdoor public places go further. There is no evidence to suggest that outdoor smoking is even an irritant to anyone else so outdoor bans are just spiteful means to prevent smokers from being able to access those public places they are entitled to access like everyone else - but prevented from it just because some phobic health obsessed hysteric doesn't like the look of them.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 13:03 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Do you mean all smokers, Simon?

Or only those smokers who want to stop but can't?

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 14:27 | Unregistered CommenterRollo Tommasi

Rollo, those who want to stop, have the right to stop. Those don't want to stop have the right not to stop. What was your question?

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 17:41 | Unregistered Commenterbenpal

I think smokers have as much right to smoke as Gay people have a right to be Gay, as Bell ringers have a right to ring bells, as Sportsmen have the right to play sport and Gay people, Bell ringers and Sportsmen are treated without judgement by the medical profession which they have paid for with their taxes, when they have been (self) injured. I broke a finger Bell ringing. The hospital classified it as a "sports injury" and gave me a surprising statistic of how many people they treat regularly for rope burns and broken digits, JUST from Bell ringing! All sports are expensive to our NHS yet personally inflicted. What society views as a "good" lifestyle costs in hip replacements, knee replacements, and foot trouble in later life. Dancers and musicians suffer equally. Many end up with serious health problems from a self inflicted lifestyle. Yet they have rights.

Quote (ASH) - "Prior to the implementation of the smokefree law, it was estimated that exposure to secondhand smoke in the workplace caused around 617 premature deaths in the UK each year.

How they worked out this figure must have been magical rather than scientific! For 617 (guesstimate?) deaths from SHS - itself debatable, a quarter of the entire British population have been excommunicated from society, even in places where their SHS can do no harm.

Smokers use a legal product to perform a legal lifestyle.

They do have rights.

They have the right to explain that their excommunication from society has been orchestrated by self righteous people who have used every means possible and millions of pounds to do it.

They have the right to explain that SHS was an excuse to turn society away from their habit.

They have the right to explain that they are NOT a dying breed (pun intended) but that cancer rates, asthma, allergies and other "smoking related" illnesses are increasing, not falling, despite their excommunication.

They have the right to explain that their habit and self harming has been over exaggerated by the self righteous and that medical porn displayed on their product packs are criminal nocebos performed against them.

The biggest right they have, is the right to free speech. Smokers have a right to be heard. They are never represented fairly in the media They are yelled down on TV, and like the inquisition, they are only allowed to speak when they recant.

Smokers have a right to be heard.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 17:42 | Unregistered Commentervapingpoint

"Does the tobacco industry do enough to support the consumer?"

No but then it doesn't even do much in the way to support those that it does have a legal duty towards ie it's own shareholders & employees.

When will Big Tobacco finally wake up and realize it is in a war to SURVIVE? Not just in the western World but globally? This last year or so we've had actual government ministers getting up to proclaim "Don't buy from Jews"...oh sorry, my bad, I get my anti-smoking politicians mixed up. What various ministers have said was 'we will make *insert country* a place where Big Tobacco can't do buisness'.

If I were a shareholder in Philip Morris et al I would expect them to be fighting and not just apologetically indulging in a bit of light lobbying (and compared to the Tobacco Control Industry it is very bloody light). Where are the teams of top flight lawyers contesting every single letter of the smoking bans? Where is the 'Black Lung Ops' dept , exposing the private misdeeds of the fASHists (Yeah she may be against smoking but she is happy to drive a diesel Range Rover in Chelsea and run over cute furry kittens)?

The cASHites constantly proclaim that any Pro-Smoking group is actually 'astroturf' for Big Tobacco. Its time for Big Tobacco to fulfil that prophecy!

Not for the smoker's sake but the shareholders and their own employees! Funding FOREST is almost a 'fig leaf' for their Attlee-esque appeasement of those who will never be appeased . Maybe the thought of Plain Packs will finally focus the minds of Big Tobacco and they will begin FINALLY to fight back ...or at least defend their own buisnesses.

They could start by issuing libel writs against any junk science public proclaimation . Demand that that foam flecked fASHist on Breakfast TV PROVE her claims in court.

@Simon, sorry I know you dislike overlong rants...but you did ask.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 20:04 | Unregistered CommenterThe Blocked Dwarf

Well said benpal.

It's strange, isn't it, how so many smokers just decide to give it up? Or, at least, used to. The irony is that anti tobacco groups have made such a song and dance about addiction and NRT with the result that many current smokers have been trained into believing that it's almost impossible to quit without support. It also provides the perfect excuse to relapse. IMO, the constant reminders that nicotine is highly addictive may be responsible for stall in the decline of permanent quit rates these last few years (forget the 4 wk nonsense - as deceitful as the SHS scaremongering).

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 20:42 | Unregistered Commenterdavid

Yes. No. And all of the above.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 21:04 | Unregistered CommenterGeorge Speller

Smokers do NOT have rights untill they are prepared to fight for them.Throughout the ages ,freedom,liberty,choice have been gained by fighting for them,by any means,by any methods.
Dont wait for the Tobacco Giants to give an hand ,they are just
like the Wartime Vichy Regime in France, any port in a storm.

Not done yet.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 21:18 | Unregistered CommenterFuming Ferrret

Smokers should have rights. Like smoking in a pub if the landlord agrees. Like getting a smoking section in an aircraft or train.

The tobacco companies have done very little to support smokers. One of them said they would give more support and started by building a smoking area in Bristol airport. That was a few years ago and there's been nothing else since. They could do things like buying some hotels in areas where there are very few smoking rooms. The UK has far fewer smoking rooms than in most other countries, including the USA.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 21:18 | Unregistered CommenterSchabbs

Of course smokers have rights, who could say otherwise? Smokers have the same rights to be allowed to smoke indoors as those who don't smoke to not smoke indoors. This law was banged through by 400 + mainly ignorant MPs, brainwashed by Arnott & ASH in what constituted the biggest politicxal con of modern politivcal times. Denying smokers the right to smoke indoors, under decent cover in ventilated ares has cost this country nigh on £1/2bn per month for 6 years, yet, CHOICE; ie, separate rooms for smokers would have solved such a simple problem andf probably saved 90% of the now closed businesses from closure!
Smokers also have the right NOT to be discriminated against yet the lies, fabrications, manipulated statistics and junk science used by the anti tobacco lobby have created complete discrimination. According to EU law, discrimination is illegal!

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 21:39 | Unregistered CommenterPhil Johnson

The single most important right smokers have lost is the right to demand places to smoke in the economy. The right to smoke in privately owned businesses - not just bars & restaurants but all private businesses - when the owners allow it.

When the smoking ban was introduced, smokers lost the right to let their demand "speak" in the overall economy like everyone else. As a consequence smokers lost political power as a group. And there is no doubt it has had a chilling effect on the economy.

All other rights mentioned are really just confusing the issue. This is the one right that everybody, smokers, businesses incl. the tobacco industry should fight aggressively to restore. And it is not even a smokers right - it is a property right: The right of a business owner to decide for himself whether he wants smoking on his property or not.

There is no intelligent argument against that. It is his private business and noboby forces people to go there, or indeed, to work there. Any customer or worker who can't tolerate tobacco smoke will of course seek businesses and work elsewhere - in workplaces where the owners ban smoking.

The health argument simply does not apply. Nobody is forbidden to work as a driver, soldier or hairdresser, and these jobs carry higher health risks that working in a smoky pub. In fact all outdoor city jobs do, is now admitted by the World Health Organisation, who says that outdoor pollution in and around cities is more harmful than (indoor) passive smoking:

WHO: Air Pollution Is More Harmful Than Passive Smoking

The smoking ban is the weak spot in the anti-tobacco crusade because it takes away business owners property rights, and because the ban plays a role in depressing the economy. It is completely meaningsless that doctors & pharmaceutical giants can overrule the natural & traditional rights of all business owners.

In fact it is pure socialism. It should be attacked hard by Forest and the tobacco industry by seeking alliances with business owners. Once the smoking ban is history the rest of smokers problems will fade ... cause money talks. As we all know.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 22:31 | Unregistered CommenterKlaus K

Tobacco is legal, so for sure smoker's should have rights, least in South Africa Bars/Clubs etc have smoking areas.

Monday, November 4, 2013 at 23:25 | Unregistered CommenterGary Rogers

Why should smokers, NOT, have the same right to socialize with like minded people and those who have not been brainwashed, we are using a legal product for goodness sake. Who gave whom the right to exclude smokers from socializing in comfort!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 0:13 | Unregistered Commentermandyv

An identifiable minority effectively denied the freedom to assemble, many thousands that smoke no doubt find themselves socially excluded from society as a whole. The total indoor smoking ban was brought in on the back of lies, that it was about protecting bar staff from effects of second hand smoke (more than 80% water vapour) when all that was needed was a separate room and an air management system.

The total indoor ban means smokers are persecuted, not welcome anywhere and treated like social outcasts.

Smokers also face discrimination in the jobs market and when in search of accommodation. Groups like Forest and the tobacco companies should have fought the indoor smoking ban and are not doing nearly enough. They should campaign together to highlight the discrimination that smokers face and to counter the lies spread by the anti smoking lobby.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 0:16 | Unregistered Commentermark

I think its less 'smokers rights' and more 'property rights'. A bar owner should have the right to allow smoking if they choose,

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 4:41 | Unregistered CommenterMark Butcher

Interesting comment by David. If you want to stop smoking - really want to stop, you will. The craving is not for the nicotine, it's for the "other stuff" in cigarettes. The myth of nicotine addiction has been a ruse to make smoking BAD. But actually nicotine was wrongly identified as the only addictive part of tobacco in the 1800's. This is why nicotine patches are not successful. The nicotine myth makes billions for the drug companies and wastes NHS money that could be spent otherwise.

I think people could have stopped smoking easier if money had been spent on forcing cigarette manufacturers to sell natural tobacco cigarettes without any additives. I think anti tobacco got really lost. They survive so well now because anti tobacco itself has become a profitable industry employing workers in many different guises and subsets in gahoots with willing and supportive pharmaceuticals.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 9:17 | Unregistered Commentervapingpoint

Of course smokers have rights. Most of them are covered above. We have the right, like anyone else, to socialise and not be ostracised because people don't like the smell! There are plenty of smells that people don't like such as some perfurmes/colognes, BO and any number of aromas from food and drink, but these are accepted as being part of the big wide world, so why should smoking be any different? We cannot ban everything because someone doesn't like it!

There will always be people who are physically afflicted by certain natural things, but we can't and don't ban them just because of these people, and they have more right to have things curtailed for their health. Smoking does not harm anybodies health, except, maybe, the smokers.

The mental health of some smokers is being seriously harmed by curtailing their ability to socialise and smoking has been helpful to many with mild depression and kept them off of prescribed medication. That has changed a lot since the ban.

Smoking is being targetted because doing so is a huge money spinner for the pharmaceutical industry as well as being a golden egg and massive ego boost to the charlatans in ASH and other hangers on of ASH.

I believe that every scrap of 'scientific evidence' ASH has produced should be minutely scrutinised by a completely unbiased body and ALL the results then published along with comparisons of 'harm' from smoking against other everyday products. The whole scam needs putting into perspective so every person on the street can fully understand how they have been conned by ASH, their hangers on, the pharmaceutical industry and the government.

As for tobacco companies, Yes, they should fight for our rights as well as that of their employees and shareholders, as mentioned previously. They have the money and if they club together then they have massive funds to call upon and challenge the so called 'evidence' in court. They should stop being yellow bellies and step up to the mark!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 9:18 | Unregistered CommenterLyn Ladds

There are so many good comments above - all sensible and well put that I cannot think of anything to add to this discussion, apart from congratulating all concerned and pointing out the difference between these well structured comments and the manic rants of the anti-tobacco industry.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 9:51 | Unregistered CommenterPeter Thurgood

" the constant reminders that nicotine is highly addictive may be responsible"-David

I explain it , in my simplistic manner, to people thus: "When I wake at night then i ,often, need a cigarette but it isn't the NEED for a cigarette that wakes me and that, boys and girls, is the difference between habit and addiction."

Or I say to them: "Once I nearly died from Pneaumonia , when every mouse like breath sent shards of curare tipped rusty razor blades through my lungs. I almost couldn't breath , let alone smoke. So I didn't smoke for the 3 weeks I was in hospital and at home recovering and it wasn't a struggle. If, however, i had been addicted to smoking, say, heroin then it would have been a very different you know how painful it is to inject into the skin between your toes?"

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 12:13 | Unregistered CommenterThe Blocked Dwarf

Tobacco companies supporting consumers by buying hotels is an excellent idea. Probably the most practical and achievable too.

How about putting it to them Simon and reporting back on their response?

Of course the tobacco companies could also hold regular meetings with tobacco consumer representatives, perhaps once a month?

Oooh - and just imagine if they opened a tobacco customer care shop opposite every single we hate smoker shop in towns across the UK that display abusive posters in their windows telling everyone how we are child abusers, and how we "stink" etc..

My favourite comment is Vaping Liz's. If only E Cig companies thought like you.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 12:17 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

vapingpoint, there is one other thing that is addictive about smoking, the hand to mouth motion, that is why so many put on weight when they try to give up because they substitute the hand to mouth with cigarette for the hand to mouth with food/sweets! I have that problem when I am in a truck and can't smoke in the cab. This makes the ban, in itself, largely to blame for an increase in obesity, in my view.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 12:34 | Unregistered CommenterLyn Ladds

Have the tobacco companies done enough? NO. What should they do? As Gian Turci used to say, 'grow a pair of balls'. The single most important thing they could do is to fight the SHS fraud in court. Sue ASH. Sue CRUK. Sue the Department of Health. Sue the government! It's actually VERY strange that they haven't done anything like this. It makes me think there's some missing piece to this puzzle that none of us is seeing.

As for smokers' rights, I'm sorry to say, I don't think we have any. But neither do I think antismokers have the right to forbid us to smoke. Whenever someone tries to debate with me about smoking on the basis of 'rights', I refuse to play that game and say that it's not an issue of rights, except in one case: property rights, e.g. of publicans. Otherwise the perceived rights of smokers and nonsmokers cancel each other out, and it's a pointless and misleading argument. The argument should always be brought back to the dishonesty of Antismoking propaganda - especially SHS. I keep saying this: murderers and suicides don't have rights. And that is how smokers are being portrayed. The right response is 'no we're not'. Not 'OK, but we still have some rights'!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 16:20 | Unregistered CommenterJoe Jackson

It makes me think there's some missing piece to this puzzle that none of us is seeing.

I think that missing piece is that all the movers and shakers in the upper echelons of the tobacco industry are firstly non-smokers, inculcated with all the anti-smoker propaganda, and secondly are only looking at the bottom line. As long as profits hold up, they're happy. Why rock the boat? If they stick their collective head above the parapet, given the power and influence (not to mention funding) of the Tobacco Control Industry, they could come badly unstuck.

So they soft-pedal on issues like SHS. They probably know full well that there is no justification for the bans, but the very successful propaganda campaign has made it an emotive, rather than scientific issue. And they are the baddies of the piece, TCI being the altruistic angels.

Well, just think of the chiiildren....

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 18:53 | Unregistered Commenternisakiman

"The argument should always be brought back to the dishonesty of Antismoking propaganda - especially SHS."

Exactly! SHS is the one and only key. Without it, everything falls.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 18:57 | Unregistered CommenterFrank J

I met a very elderly lady recently for whom the only pleasure left was smoking. She was virtually housebound. The saddest thing was that she felt obliged to justify her continued smoking to me, a confessed fellow smoker, and explain that she'd managed to cut it down. This lady was bright as a button and, despite her years - at which age we all hope we'd have some peace - had a hell of a lot to cope with. Smoking helped her to cope but she was subjected to harassment by her doctor and her children and had a hunted look as she smoked outside her front door (she felt that she couldn't smoke indoors).

She's only one casualty of the evil done by the BMA, ASH, ignorant MPs, lazy media fomenting a population whose voice is heard but that doesn't know how to critically evaluate information and absorbs all the pap that it's fed And ALL OF IT stems from the lie of SHS.

Does the industry do enough? Snort! The manufacturer of the cigs I now buy has put pack inserts in recently - to advertise the fact that future cigs will have a button which, if pressed, will release 'a fresh (yeah, even they're at it) taste". Jeeez! Manufacturers would do well to realise that their rivals aren't other companies but the war waged on them - and their consumers - by a conglomerate out to destroy them.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 at 20:06 | Unregistered CommenterJoyce

Surely, Simon, the point here is that either everybody has rights, or no-one has any rights. The question has much wider implications than just smoking; people need to consider the principle behind it – it could easily have been asked about a range of other currently disapproved-of activities, and given time and the seemingly unstoppable onward march of the neo-Puritans, it probably will.

But once a society accepts the principle that some people’s rights trump those of others, then by definition you no longer have a “free society” – you just have a society where some people are free and others are not, much as existed in medieval times. Once a society accepts the principle that some people should be denied their rights because of one facet of their chosen lifestyle then the door is opened for the same principle to be applied to any other fashionably disapproved-of activity. That is, after all, the nature of a principle. And therein lies the danger. In the wake of countless smoking bans across the world, we have seen the template applied to alcohol consumption, the demanding of extra airfares for obese people, and, most recently in the UK, the withdrawal of the right to vote for the long-term unemployed. Can anyone, hand on heart, truly believe that this is just coincidence? That one very successful movement supporting intolerance and lack of compromise just happens to have preceded all these others? Of course not! The anti-smoking movement began a process which garnered strength and social approval to the most illiberal members of society to flex their muscles and to attempt to utilise their power in the most alarming of ways using the same methods, the same arguments and appealing to the same emotions in the public in an effort to gain support for their own particular cause celebre. Maybe that wasn’t the intention. Maybe the anti-smoking movement felt – as they themselves have said on many occasions - that their “cause” was different and unique and special, but it was certainly the end result.

Indeed, the very question itself is a worrying one – the title being “do smokers have rights” rather than “do smokers have the right to smoke?” In and of itself, simply to pose such a broad question indicates a willingness to divide people, Animal-Farm-style, into “those who are equal” and “those who are less equal than others.” In a country such as South Africa, which has fought and won a long, torrid and bloody battle against prejudice and intolerance and which – probably more than any other country in the world – must surely know only too well the injustice and unfairness which results in granting greater “rights” to some people to the detriment of others, any moves which bear even the slightest hint of division of society into the “worthy” and the “unworthy” – of whatever rights and for whatever reason – should surely not just be dismissed out of hand, ignored or politely declined, but should be met with forceful, wholehearted and total rejection.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 1:56 | Unregistered CommenterMisty

Do PETS (People who Enjoy Tobacco) have rights? Of course they do! They have a right to enjoy their tobacco. What has been mooted as important in the very recent past has been:
a) Should they be deterred from enjoying tobacco by massive 'sin' taxes.
b) Should the be deterred by the imposition of controls on publicans and such.
c) Should they be deterred by outdoor bans on hospital grounds.
d) Should people who are incarcerated as a result of mental health problems or a prison sentence, be experimented upon by flagellating them with outdoor bans and then covering their wounds with sticking plasters.
e) Should car drivers who light a cigarette be looking over their shoulder to see whether a Zealot in a nearby car observes them and reports them.
All of the above consequences have one origin, which is the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
ALL Big X's (Alcohol, Food, Salt, Sugar, Etc), should combine to destroy that Treaty. It is the root of the evil which has overtaken us.
The WHO especially needs to be reorganised. It should go back to honest science and observation with a view to alleviating suffering.

'Smokers Rights' are very simple. "Leave us alone!" That translates into no tax persecution, smoker owned and staffed bars, parents' rights to decide what their children are exposed to, and the right of smokers to be self-sufficient by growing their own plants if the wish to do so.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 3:24 | Unregistered CommenterJunican

Also remember how Frank Davis' mole said that anti-smoker activists had got onto the boards of tobacco companies so they could wreck them from the inside?

Maybe that's it.!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 8:07 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

No the tobacco company doesent give us enough support.
I wonder do they feel they havent a case to answer with all the Anti global feeling against them and they fear that their factories could be closed down.
Gallaghers that manufactured Carroll cigarettes pulled out of Ireland with the loss of thousands of jobs during the recession in the eighties and relocated to England.
But then how come nuclear factories are being put up all over europe against peoples wishes who feel just as anti as against smoking.
And how come govt ministers who couldnt organise a piss up in a brewery can stand up and shout down the tobacco giants.
I just dont understand it.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 11:47 | Unregistered Commenterann

Whats interesting is that the question needs to be asked at all . Its an indication of how far the demonization of people who smoke has gone . The anti smoking lobby hate people that smoke though they cloak theyre hatred with health excuses . A bit like racists who disguise theyre hatred of black skin with economic excuses .

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 19:48 | Unregistered CommenterWilliam

Smokers definately should have and have their own rights. How humiliating is it for some people to be coughing in the open air because they see someone smoking or even more so in the past to behave likewise to us and feel concerned that their clothes smell and not this or not the other. Or to be inconsiderate towards us in general trying to reverse what they think that we would be or would have been or even to disregard the option that someone might smoke, for themselves and everybody else in front of us in order to disrespect us, our habbit and our choice.

Thursday, November 7, 2013 at 21:20 | Unregistered CommenterCostas Kitis

Smokers have no rights as long as non- smokers believe that we are killing them through passive smoking.

Thursday, November 7, 2013 at 22:16 | Unregistered Commentervoltaire2811

It makes me think there's some missing piece to this puzzle that none of us is seeing.

That's true. Why doesn't the tobacco industry sue the government? Well, maybe they are afraid of the forces they would have to fight against? After all the "partnership" between the UN (WHO) and the enourmously rich global pharma cartel is not a weak enemy:

WHO launches partnership with the pharmaceutical industry to help smokers quit

This is the global fascist government. "Fascist" in the Mussolini meaning of the word: The partnership between Big Government & the big private cartels. The same kind of partnership played out in Italy in the 1920's and in Germany 1933-45, where the Nazis coorporated with the continental pharma cartel at the time: I.G.Farben.

Of course the intent of the WHO-Pharma partnership is not to "help" anyone, and it has nothing to do with health either - these are just excuses for the war. The real intent - apart from selling Nicorette - is to force nicotine out of Big Tobacco's hands and deliver it to Big Pharma, so BP can monopolize nicotine and hereby raise the price substantially. That is also why they wanted so badly to classify E-cigs as "medicinal" - it seems to be the way Big Pharma is working.

As soon as this partnership became official in 1999, the partners began to work on "the treaty" to end the tobacco industry:

WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control

This Orwell-language treaty has been signed by nearly all governments in the world in the period 2003-2006. The intent of the treaty is to destroy tobacco in the world - not just smoking, but all tobacco - by declaring passive smoking dangerous and impose smoking bans in all member countries to protect against this danger.

Please note paragraph 8 about the smoking bans, and especially the framing of the words about the weak evidence on passive smoking:

1. Parties recognize that scientific evidence has unequivocally established that exposure to tobacco smoke causes death, disease and disability.

2. Each Party shall adopt and implement in areas of existing national jurisdiction ... effective legislative, executive, administrative and/or other measures, providing for protection from exposure to tobacco smoke in indoor workplaces, public transport, indoor public places and, as appropriate, other public places.

This "partnership" and its anti-tobacco treaty is what the tobacco industry is up against. It is the awakening of a global totalitarian health-monster. The UN and Big Pharma work together in a dangerous coorporation that intents to kill individual freedom in the world: The right of every human being on the planet to decide for himself what he wants to put in his mouth or body.

I completely agree with Junican in that the other big industries need to wake up and fight. Sugar will be the next tobacco, as you may have read:

ALL Big X's (Alcohol, Food, Salt, Sugar, Etc), should combine to destroy that Treaty. It is the root of the evil which has overtaken us.

This, I think, is "the missing piece to the puzzle that none of us is seeing," as Joe J remarked.

Friday, November 8, 2013 at 1:05 | Unregistered CommenterKlaus K

Today I had to make a delivery to an Iceland RDC in Swindon. I was late, which they were advised I would be, due to a road closure and a lengthy detour. However, they said that because I was late they would fit me in as and when. I asked where the smoking area was and the girl at the counter gleefully stated there wasn't one! I asked again roughly how long I might be and was told a few hours, at least. I said I would take myself off site then so I could have a smoke, to which I was told that is not allowed! I pointed out that that was tantamount to false imprisonment and I could, if I wished, call the police. She then told me that if I wanted to leave the site I would have to do so in my truck. I did.

This then meant, which I was not advised of, that I had 'pulled out' thereby forfeiting my place in the queue and had to start again on my return.

As an agency driver this did not go down well - I was supposed to do a second run! To top it all, the girl complained, by email, to the company I was working for that I was rude and had only been on site 20 minutes before insisting on leaving to have a smoke.

As I pointed out to the company I was working for, I had had one cigarette since arriving with them at 06.50 as it was illegal to smoke in the truck and due to the detour delaying me I had not pulled up to have a smoke, not realising that some companies had withdrawn all rights for smokers. Therefore, at around 12.30, some 5 hours after my last smoke, I didn't think it unreasonable to want another one.

So, on this basis, it seems that we definitely do not have any rights! Just goes to prove that we smokers are the only people in the UK who can be and are openly discriminated against.

Friday, November 8, 2013 at 20:08 | Unregistered CommenterLyn Ladds

My last comment didn't address the issue of smokers' rights - the question of this post (my last comment was written in the midst of the red mist that had come down after reading the previous, excellent, comments).

Do smokers have rights? No we have none: it's been 'proven' that we deserve none because we harm other people and we have renounced rights, in the manner of criminals who, by virtue of having breached society's code by harming others, have rights stripped from them. In excluding us from the public sphere, either physically or from consultation we are being treated no differently from criminals and are not being discriminated against.

Should smokers have rights? The questiion only becomes debatable when the deceit of SHS is exposed and the issue is then whether one should be allowed to harm oneself. In a free society the answer must be yes because such a society recognises the right of every human being who has mental capacity to make decisions which others regard as foolish or foolhardy. The degree of risk is immaterial. The UK at the present time does recognise this right in law. The issue then becomes one of good manners: how to accommodate the wishes of smokers and those who, although not harmed by SHS, are inconvenienced by it. Step in the numerous options: separate establishments, separate rooms or ventilation systems.

Never gonna happen - the population is brainwashed until the Mail has the headline "Real Scientists Debunk The Myth Of Second Hand Smoke" and pigs will fly first.

Friday, November 8, 2013 at 20:58 | Unregistered CommenterJoyce

I suppose I didn't mean exactly that smokers have 'no rights' - presumably we have the same basic human rights as everyone else, whatever they may be (it's not necessarily always clear). Regardless, I just don't think we have rights as smokers per se, or a 'right to smoke'. Or even if we do, it's not the point. Thank you Klaus K, I'm very much aware of the FCTC and the influence of the Pharma industry but other readers may not be. Clearly the tobacco industry is 'up against it' with powerful enemies, but . . . no matter how powerful those enemies are, they CANNOT prove in a court of law that 'SHS Kills'. And surely tobacco companies can still afford decent lawyers. At the end of the day, it's still very weird that a fraud which is so easy to debunk, has so much influence and goes on year after year without any meaningful challenge. It's like we're living in the story of 'The Emperor's New Clothes'. I get it but I don't get it . . . if anyone knows what I mean . . . ?!

Saturday, November 9, 2013 at 6:00 | Unregistered CommenterJoe Jackson

The main reason for the Uk's total indoor smoking ban is to denormalise smoking. It is not about bar staff or non smokers being exposed to the so called effects of shs; if it were then smoking rooms with air management systems would be allowed as this solves any perceived problem.
Mps here now argue, that they wouldn't want to see smoking back in pubs. The smoking ban has little or nothing to do with the shs issue.

What right did Mps have to totally ban smoking indoors and denormalise it, when smoking can be restricted to a room or rooms where it would not affect non smokers or anyone else?

A ban on smoking rooms, surely this means that people are being discriminated against ?

Saturday, November 9, 2013 at 16:32 | Unregistered Commentermark

"Do smokers have rights?" one asks.

The better question is: "Do smokers want rights?" Because until this question is asked and answered in the affirmative, then the former question has little significance. The former question is premature.

What is a right? A "right" is merely a concession or a grant by those who hold power and influence. A "right" is nothing more than a legal construct designed to keep you believing that you hold some degree of power over your life. A "right" is the wool that is pulled over your eyes in order to enforce your obedience, to keep you a slave. For if we truly had any natural born rights or human rights, we would know them instinctively. Instead, we are told what our rights are, and more important, we are told what our rights are not. Our rights are an illusion of freedom and liberty.

This is the construct of our current civilisation, so unless we decide to tear down that system by disobeying laws or by other means, then we must work within the system and attempt to bend it to our will.

If smokers want rights, smokers will have to organise themselves as a group. That group will have to be legally recognised, preferably as a suffering, aggrieved and persecuted minority. Then you may ask the question whether smokers have rights. When the group decides affirmatively that it indeed does have rights, the group will then have to fight for those rights. Smokers will have to earn their rights, like any other group in the current construct of civilisation has done. It is not enough to simply state what rights you believe are yours, nor even to demand your rights. You will have to fight.

Because you have no rights. You have nothing until those in power reluctantly agree to give them to you, or until you decide to stop being slaves and overthrow your masters.

As for tobacco companies, in theory they could do a lot more but they are not obligated to do so. Smokers are customers. If you as a smoker are unhappy with the businesses you buy products from, if you believe that business is not representing itself or its customers properly, then your best recourse is to not buy their products and source your wares from another supplier, if you can. Because a business is about making money. All businesses are about profit. Money talks.

Saturday, November 9, 2013 at 19:23 | Unregistered CommenterDeep Smoke

Deep Smoke, I like your comment very much, because it goes to the root of the subject:
"A "right" is nothing more than a legal construct designed to keep you believing that you hold some degree of power over your life."

A right is something that is 'graciously' granted to us by somebody who considers him/her as the ultimate holder of rights. We have to ask for rights and may be refused rights to exercise our free will.

"For if we truly had any natural born rights or human rights, we would know them instinctively. Instead, we are told what our rights are, and more important, we are told what our rights are not. Our rights are an illusion of freedom and liberty."

Simply excellent!

Saturday, November 9, 2013 at 23:11 | Unregistered Commenterbenpal

Money talks, exactly. No one can argue against that. And more people must realize that money is the reason for the smoking bans.

The pharma business owners have financed the anti-smoking crusade from sometimes in the 1980's after the nicotine chewing gum was approved by the FDA. Pharma's intention was to seduce the public to accept the smoking ban, because with a ban they would clearly earn more money on their products. Seen from a straight business competition point-of-view:

They manipulated policy makers into changing the old world into a new world, where consumption of their own products was allowed, while consumption of their competitors' product (tobacco smoking) was banned.

Without Big Pharma the smoking bans had never been possible. The ban is all about money, not about health or rights.

The anti-smoking crowd is nurtured and backed by Big Pharma, who is the sugar daddy of the "public health" community in many countries, incl. the WHO and the medical establishments. They work like this: Let's pour money into the hands of experts & academics that will forward our case. The principle: "If they don't say what we want them to say, they are not gonna get any more money." As explained by a Pfizer ex-CEO:

Ex Pfizer CEO: How to influence the medical establishment

That's how they got the smoking bans. Big Pharma is the real enemy - not just the enemy of the tobacco industry and the other industries (alc, food, salt, sugar), as mentioned by Junican - but the enemy of all free people and businesses in the world. Big Pharma is working for a fascist health dictatorship, partnering with the UN (WHO) and many government administrations - they should be fought with full force by everybody.

It is possible that a tobacco industry court case against the WHO (?) about passive smoking, as Joe Jackson mentions, could turn the tide ... at least for the first time in my life I totally agree that "something must be done" ...

Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 1:56 | Unregistered CommenterKlaus K

Yes I think thats the answer and explains it, to me anyway.
Big Pharma in partnership with the UN WHO and government administrations are jealous of the tabacco companies profit in selling a product that has/had massive sales, even without gimmicky ads to promote it and a continuous demand.
Just like a supermarket product that sells too well and is taken off the shelf to make you buy the yellow pack equivalent, it happens all the time in supermarkets.
So Big Pharma infiltrate the establishment and sets up thousands of Quangos and the gang above to oust the biggest seller.
Its all down to jealousy and the filthy lucre aka profit.

Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 12:55 | Unregistered Commenterann

Joe Jackson - I believe we do have the right to smoke as long as tobacco is a legal consumer product. We have as much "right" to smoke tobacco as another consumer has a "right" to drive a car, drink coffee or tea, or eat chocolate.

The blanket ban, denormalisation, SHS, and invented THS are just little steps being taken bit by bit to make tobacco illegal and to criminalise tobacco consumers and then we will have no right to smoke, or even a right to exist. We are now about a wisp of smoke away from that holy grail for antis.

Do we want rights? Of course. Will we fight for those rights? That is the real question because unless we do then we will lose what little we have left - which is only the right to consume a legal product outdoors, in our own homes, and in our own cars (for now anyway but those rights will be soon be taken too)

The tobacco industry could, and should, help us to fight for our rights to consume a legal product if it wasn't such a pussy.

Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 15:26 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

Yes, some pertinent observations from Deep Smoke.

The very fact that smokers are such a disparate bunch means that any concerted resistance to the current pogrom is difficult (to say the least), to organise. Added to that difficulty is the fact that the average Joe Smoker has been thoroughly indoctrinated with the relentless propaganda campaign issuing from the TCI over the last twenty years or so, and feels that resistance is futile given the 'science' and 'facts' that have been arraigned against him.

Add to that the explicit endorsement of the junk science by the MSM, and it's hardly surprising that there is so little defiance in evidence. And of course, UK tends to be quite fanatical about prosecuting the law to the letter; also the Brits are not renown for ignoring the law of the land, even when it is unreasonable.

Where I live, the locals have dealt with the capricious smoking bans through the simple mechanism of civil disobedience. The police, who are charged with enforcing this diktat from the WHO via the FCTC really have no appetite for prosecuting people for what, in their eyes, is an arbitrary imposition on people's freedom of choice. As a result, you would be forgiven for assuming that there are no smoking bans at all here. Would that such an attitude prevailed in UK!

As has been said several times already in this thread, the issue hinges on very publicly demolishing the fallacy of harm from SHS. This is something which would be very easy to do from a scientific point of view, but given the political influence of those who would oppose any attempt to do so, any refutation of the fallacious claims that hoped to reach all and sundry would require large sums of money.

Money talks. It does indeed...

Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 16:42 | Unregistered Commenternisakiman

"It is possible that a tobacco industry court case against the WHO (?) about passive smoking [..] could turn the tide ... "
A nice dream, but no way ...
The WHO is an international organisation. There is no court for international affairs. The WHO has no legislative power and therefore are free to voice their opinion any way they want.

You would have run the case against them scientific grounds (deceipt). Don't put any faith into the impartiality and scientific knowledge of judges, they are just human.

Sunday, November 10, 2013 at 17:11 | Unregistered Commenterbenpal

I was at a car wash one day about a year ago. While Iwas waiting, I went outside to catch a cigarette. Ofcourse this old straight laced broad was sitting outside waiting for her suburban to be washed and waxed. I was 5 ft away from her when I took the first puff...almost immediately she waved her hands around erratically trying to escape from my dirty nasty disgusting second hand smoke. Then she very rudely said to me "can you just not smoke?!". Really?? Can you just take your suburban driving polluting ass inside? Im outside where I am allowed to smoke. Dont like it? Go inside where I am not smoking....smokers should have rights but they dont. We get our sideways dirty looks and heavier taxes...thats all smokers get. I understand the *nasties* of cigarettes but ive made my choice. Im sure she will go home and deplete the ozone layer further while she goes and pour herself an expensive glass of champagne and pass out on her satin sheets when shes had one too many but I....I am the disgusting one.

Sunday, May 4, 2014 at 5:19 | Unregistered Commenterclrockw1989

I'm now 36 years old. Although I would like to want to not smoke, it doesn't seem that I have a lot of drive to quit. I remember being a young child in the late 80's and going out to a restaurant with my grandparents and sitting amongst billows of smoke, within the establishment (this is in California). Fast forward 10-12 years and I remember the first time I was asked by a Starbucks Batista to either leave the premises or put out my cigarette (outdoors I might add and far from any doors). Fast forward another 10 years to the current and I received a notice from my apartment management saying that I am no longer allowed to smoke on my own balcony or any other part of the complex. I know deep down that smoking isn't the best thing for me, so it seems almost counter productive to fight for the rights that I should have while smoking remains legal, but wow. The self righteousness and indignation that goes into one human being telling another they cannot smoke outdoors while on there own balcony is pretty insane. As if non smokers have a more legitimate claim to oxegen or space that doesn't even belong to them. Smokers should take back freedom somehow and have this fabricated stigma that's been imposed upon them removed. I just think its ironic that when I was young and had no say in the matter, I ate (inhaled) true indoor second hand smoke with my dinner, but now that it's my turn to smoke, and regardless of how aware of others and polite I am about it, I keep getting pushed out or into some box where I'm barely even allowed to smoke there, like an animal in a cage for all of the nonsmoker's to look down upon.

Monday, January 2, 2017 at 5:23 | Unregistered Commenteranthony

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