Monday, 15 March 2010

TICAP 2010 - Monday 15th March PM

17:08: Director of TICAP, John Gray, delivers the closing address and the 2nd TICAP conference is at a close.

17:00: Prior to the closing address, Maryetta Ables speaks a tribute to co-founder of TICAP, Gian Turci, who died last year.

TICAP Afternoon Panel

16:49: Michael McFadden sees alcohol taxation in the US increasing dramatically in the near future to keep pace with tobacco. He also sees a future legalisation of marijuana so that government can reap the taxation (note from DP: California are close to legalising the use of marijuana with a ballot option already approved).

16:45: Patrick Basham believes the UK should be "cautiously pessimistic" about government's attacks on alcohol as he sees the Conservative party intent on "maintaining a paternalistic approach".

16:40: Maryetta Ables clarifies the US position as Dr Chaouachi had mentioned that Forces were talking of taking anti-smokers to court. She said the groundwork had been done but there was a lack of funding. The charge would have been abuse of power in contravention of the Constitution.

16:37: Patrick Basham chips in by asking if the Conservative party in the UK, if they win this year's election, are brave enough to tackle state-funded NGOs and fake charities.

16:35: On lobbying, Gawain Towler points out that the reported moves to stop lobbying of the EU is not lobbying in general, but specifically lobbying by tobacco companies.

16:30: Dr Chaouachi restates his earlier view that there is so much fraudulent science relating to tobacco that it should be aggregated, and action be taken to bring those who produce it to trial.

Patrick Basham: "Smoking bans aren't about public health, they're about 'getting' tobacco companies"

16:13: Michael McFadden explains that the public are susceptible to anti-smoking fraud because they are very secure in their lives, which makes their health a very strong concern. So if the message, however untrue, that passive smoke is going to kill them is told often enough, they will believe it. Such worries can also lead to exaggerated - or even imagined - 'syndromes such as Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (which Chris Snowdon describes as being believed by hypochondriacs).

16:05: Patrick Basham fields a question from Chris Snowdon by opining that the welfare state is used by government as a club to beat smokers with. That we must dictate what others do because all of society pay for it. He says this is a false premise as it's clear that smokers cost society less money, not more.

16:00: Questions begin with Dr Chaouachi answering Frank Davis in the comments here. He cites the ban in Syria and predict that the ban wil be lifted there soon as it has caused social unrest and that there are huge protests against it. He said a ban in Iran was introduced and had to be lifted to. He believes tobacco control will meet strong resistance in muslim countries.

Coffee break, after which there will be questions from the floor. I'll put Frank Davis's question if possible.

15:37: McFadden finishes by encouraging all to continue getting the word out about prohibitionist methods and false science, using flyers, books, web sites and word of mouth.

15:33: While explaining ways to expose anti-smoking lies, McFadden recommends a newish book on the matter, The War on Smokers and the Rise of the Nanny State by Theodore King.

15:22: McFadden runs through some of the most outrageous tobacco control 'scientific' conclusions and advises that anti-prohibitionists should continue to expose the lies. To highlight anti-smokers' lies on economic impact, he showed the devastating effect on gambling taxes in Minnesota (from figures provided by the state) where there have been all three scenarios (no ban, partial ban, total ban) between 2003 and 2008.

Michael McFadden

15:15: Michael McFadden begins by stating that anti-smoking organisations spent $800m last year on advertising to scare and denormalise. Thy even bought air time during the most expensive TV show for advertising, the Superbowl.

15:08: Chaouachi explains that junk science is in direct opposition to the teachings of the Koran, which states that "good science goes from cradle to the grave" and that anti-tobacco's demonstrably false science should be highlighted to muslims at every opportunity. He says the social lives of millions of muslims is being attacked on the basis of false research.

15:00: Chaouachi describes some of the studies on hookah, which he says are riddled with errors. He gives an example of an awful report from the University of East Anglia (of Climategate infamy) which refused to entertain criticism or critical peer review.

14:55: Conference are shown anti-hookah adverts (one from the World Health Organisation) featuring plumes of sidestream smoke. Chaouachi states that these are fraudulent as hookah pipes do not emit sidestream smoke.

14:50: Chaouachi highlights the huge differences between hookah and tobacco - distance of smoke, temperature, constituent chemicals, duration of smoke, and addictive nature or lack of it - and yet tobacco controllers still cannot distinguish between the two.

14:45: Chaouachi is giving delegates a history of hookah and its highly socio-cultural aspects.

Chaouachi: "Harm reduction is one thing, tobacco control is quite another"

14:40: Chaouachi starts by explaining that he was subject to pressure by a prominent tobacco controller not to attend today. He was threatened with his work no longer being treated as unbiased.

14:35: Dr Kamal Chaouachi begins a presentation on Hookah pipes and prohibitions on their use.

14:33: Goerlitz states that he never wanted to be an "anti-smoking zealot" and that he believes people should have choice to make their own decisions in life, rightly or wrongly.

David Goerlitz: "They [ASH] are doing things that are bordering on criminal behaviour"

14:27: After explaining how he went from being the Marlboro Winston Man to joining tobacco control, Goerlitz then asserts that anti-tobacco are corrupt and out of control. He states that their treatment of smokers is unfair and damaging. Prohibition doesn't work, he says. He describes laws against smokers as "fraudulent and corrupt".

David Goerlitz: "Tobacco control in 2010 is more corrupt than ever before"

14:20: David Goerlitz is recovering from a back operation and can't make the venue, but his presentation has been video recorded and is now being played to the delegates.

14:10: The conference reconvenes with an address from a Liberal Dutch parliamentarian (name to be added later as I didn't catch it). He explains the progressive intrusion on freedoms used by legislators. In essence, he argues that total prohibition is always the eventual goal for politicians as advocating moderation tends not to get the message across as they would like. Prohibitionists will use small steps to edge politicians closer to a situation where they are persuaded that prohibition is necessary.


  1. He was Winston Man not Marlboro.

    Dave A

  2. Hope you're having fun Dick.

    Dick the Prick

  3. Chaouachi said that the social lives of millions of Muslims is being attacked by false science.

    Does he know how smoking bans are affecting those Muslim countries where they have been introduced? Can he describe some effects? There's very little news about smoking bans even in Europe, but next to none from Iraq or Morocco.

  4. Has Michael McFadden read the work on the P53 gene. It is the gene that protects against cell multiplication for lung cancer.

    The p53 gene on chromosone 11 mutates in smokers but is NEVER found in non smokers. Instead the Eperdermal growth factor gene (EFGR) protein mutates instead.

    They are now medically considered to be "completely different diseases".

    Hence SHS cannot cause lung cancer in non smokers.

  5. PS the p53 point is me

    Dave Atherton

  6. Enjoying Michael McFadden's expose DP!

  7. Thanks a lot, Dick.

    "Huge protests" in Syria, eh? News to me. And many other people too, I'll bet.

  8. Comment. Can you please relay to the room please Dick?

    I find that Dr. Chaouachi's suggestion of demanding of our respective countries to pull from the WHO framework convention based on the havoc it's causing societies on nothing but corporate interests and pseudo science, really has merit . I hope TICAP looks at this angle which would go hand in hand with the Brussels Declaration and invite TICAP member organizations to launch such an initiative.

  9. DP Can the myth that SHS causes death ever be tested in the courts...since there is no autopsy evidence to prove this claim?

  10. I think it has been, JJ, and it failed (Labat case?)

  11. The Canadian blackmarket is anywhere between 40 - 50% of all ciagrettes smoked, because of extortionist taxation ! Agree with Michael that in the US they have reached the breaking point of how much they can tax tobacco.

  12. There was an article in the business section of yesterday's Times discussing the problems caused by high tobacco taxes.

  13. The above comment on the P53 gene is interesting. Do any readers have specialist knowledge about the relationship of this gene to lung cancer? From the very little I've read, it appears that burning any king of organic matter has the same effect as tobacco smoke; and so cooking fumes, bonfire and bbq smoke should be viewed with the same seriousness, or not, as ETS.