Doctor and activist

British American Tobacco launches new Campaign to legitimise Vaping.

23 November 2022

Almost all the vaping products are owned by tobacco companies, and the marketing is almost a re-run of their tobacco campaigns. i.e:

1. Assume that it is here to stay, and hence legitimate and unstoppable.
2. Suggest that ‘courtesy and consideration’ is all that is needed.
3. Fight regulation as much as possible.

Naturally they are keen to say that any attempt to restrict nicotine is doomed to failure as it is already totally available on the Black Market.

It might be noted that when there were different regulations in Canada from the US for tobacco labelling, cigarettes were smuggled through the Indian reservations, and all labelling that used to allow the source of the cigarettes to be identified was removed from the packaging, which showed what contempt the tobacco industry had for regulations that lessened their sales.

We might expect that similar things are happening in sales of vaping products and liquids. Naturally as they talk about how hopeless it is to regulate vaping products they want to hark back to the failure of alcohol prohibition in the 1930s, which led to Al Capone and his gangsters.

Older folk will remember that as the tobacco control movement grew stronger in the late 1970s we were attacked as ‘wowsers’ and ‘killjoys’, with the implication that we were stopping people having a good time, which was what smoking was all about. It is the same tactic again. We want to stop all the happy vapers.

The tobacco industry used the fact that some doctors think that vaping can help people QUIT to allow them to sell their product without having to prove it was safe. They only had to prove it was less dangerous than tobacco- a very very low bar.

Now vaping is used more as a gateway to smoking than a path from it, and often if there is nicotine in the vape it can be used alternately as a substitute. So presumably will be a move to push vaping in smoke-free areas. Then vaping will be the ideal product for the tobacco industry, being used everywhere, helping consumption, and keeping some people smoking at other times. Just like the good old days.

Health interests have to keep the government onside, but also demand some serious anti-vaping campaigns.

Vaping uses solvents, which dissolve fats. If this is the case, it is like upmarket petrol sniffing, as it will dissolves cell membranes, especially in the brain, which has the highest blood supply of any fatty tissue in the body. This is likely to lead to gradually progressive dementia. Naturally this may take years to manifest, and even longer to be identified and scientifically proven, given that a highly sceptical Industry that will criticise the research; in short a re-run of the tobacco wars.

If we look at the history of tobacco, it was used in relatively small quantities until the invention of the cigarette rolling machine by Duke in 1898. It was massively marketed during and after WW1 from 1914. It was shown to cause lung cancer in 1950. Advertising bans started in the mid 1970s, but full sponsorship bans and smoke-free indoor air did not come until 2000. The tobacco epidemic lasted a full century; so watch out for a vaping re-run with a dementia epidemic in older folk. Unlikely? No;. quite possible. So will the tobacco industry prove it is is safe. They can’t, don’t want to; now don’t have to, and have put out this BS new organisation.

Arthur Chesterfield-Evans

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