Tuesday, September 13, 2011


It's comforting to see that political commentators in the main stream are beginning to see the wealthy self interest academics at Stirling University for what they are - smokerphobics who think they are above the law.

Donna Rachel Edmonds from the Commentator condemns the Uni's cynical use of Facebook to promote its own prejudices and gain support for its tobacco control dept's lies and I agree. This tactic, signed by many TC jobsworths rather than the general public, aims to give the appearance of support for the uni to hide its jiggery pokery manipulations which have been designed to give the desired result. Academics could simply be making it up for all we know because who or what can challenge their so called "evidence" if it is not there for all to see?

Edmunds says :

The University makes no bones about it's anti-smoking bias and credentials. On the 'About Us' web page of it's Centre for Tobacco Control Research, it states as its aims as:

To-Develop and evaluate interventions designed to prevent smoking uptake and encourage cessation.

Investigate the processes and effects of the tobacco industry's marketing activities, and on the basis of this undertaking, determine the most effective ways to counter them.

Evaluate specific tobacco control policies and identify those that successfully change smoking behaviour

In other words, it is declaring open hostility to a lawful, legitimate business with a client base of one quarter of this country's population. It has now broken the law in attempting to thwart that business from exercising it's legal right to examine any evidence that might affect it's trade; and it goes further still - in attempting to gain public support for that illegal act, furthering it's intention not to uphold the law.

If people do not like the product that Philip Morris manufactures, they are perfectly able to simply not buy the product. Indeed, various Government taxes and interventions have positively encouraged them in this course of action already. Therefore we must assume that the smoking population are happy with the product, know the risks (which are, of course, stated clearly on the packets), and have legitimate reasons for choosing to smoke. That some people do not agree with their choice is no reason to start treating the law as a pick'n'mix counter, applying it only to groups we as a society are deemed to 'like'.

Stirling University needs to stop messing around and release the data to PMI immediately.

Indeed. They should be forced to come clean now. They deserve no protection, special measures or backing in law that every other single public body must adhere to and why they think they should be exempt is beyond me.

I sincerely doubt their intellect and certainly their impartiality on this issue. Youths and cigarette packaging is something I have been looking at among young people myself and I've found that more often than not it is price and brand that determines what young people buy and not the way the packet looks.

At conference last week, I noted that one Young Independence member had a nifty sliding Silk Cut packet. Very sleek, I thought and said so.

"Cool," I said. "Is that why you bought them?"

"No, not at all and not so cool either," he replied. "If you have them the wrong way round when you open it, the cigs all fall on the floor and it's not cool when you're scrambling to pick them all up."

I think it is absolutely criminal that Tobacco Control is stealing a legal industry's trade mark and forcing them to package their goods in plain wrapping with the TC's trade mark graphic images. Others in private legal business should beware. If they can strip tobacco companies of their own brand then what next?

Anything at all because these self-interest phobics have set a precedent based on nothing more than "we say so and no one should be able to see how we came to the conclusioin that we did."

This is not about health or stopping young people from smoking. This is about Puritanism, The NuTemperance Movement and a hatred of an unpopular industry and its consumers.

If tax payers' cash is funding this jiggery pokery, then we have every right to see how it was done. Stirling University should stop complaining and abide by the law like they expect every single smoker to do in every single public place and every single tobacco company to do in respect of the many over regulations of the induistry.

My view is if they don't hand over that information as ordered then they should be prosecuted.