Umm, are we sure this will work?

A radical plan by the US drugs regulator to reduce nicotine in cigarettes to non-addictive levels saw shares in FTSE 100 tobacco giants British American Tobacco and Imperial Brands go up in smoke.

Fags are a method of delivering nicotine. Reduce the nicotine level and people will smoke more or fewer fags?

The things that kill being the tar etc, not the nicotine. So, this increases or reduces the harm from smoking?

34 thoughts on “Umm, are we sure this will work?”

  1. With charmers like say Stanton Glantz riding on the tobacco control hobby horse anything is possible.

    “The FDA says” needs a bit of drilling into to expose who’s behind the move – I for one suspect it’s the same old deranged fraudsters who are spreading their wings into assorted salt, sugar, dairy, soda etc., etc.

  2. I doubt the FDA is competent to genetically modify tobacco so that it has less nicotine in it.
    They could, of course, subcontract the job to someone like British American Tobacco.

  3. And the stupid FDA is thinking about cutting down the nicotine in ecigs at the same time. So cut out the one thing that smokers could switch to which is safer and better for their health.

  4. It makes much more sense than it would have done historically, as vaping becomes a more attractive, lower-harm substitute.

    Although some people will smoke more tobacco, and if they are planning to do the same for e-cigs then the logic becomes very confused.

  5. I bet the tobacco smugglers will be having a celebration about this.

    “Don’t like the new low nicotine Marlboro cigarettes? Buy original full flavour imports from Marlboro Indonesia!”.

    Taking the same approach with the nicotine levels in vape mixtures is just doubling down on the idiocy.

  6. Although some people will smoke more tobacco, and if they are planning to do the same for e-cigs then the logic becomes very confused.

    Only if you think the main incentive is “harm reduction”. Note that the amount of nicotine in patches and other nicotine delivery systems developed by large pharma companies isn’t being reduced.

    Looks like taking out a dangerous competitor wrapped up in the fake robes of “public health” to me.

  7. Shut down FDA, and take the DEA with them.

    If they can do this, they can cut alcohol content as well. 20 proof Tanqueray? No, thanks.

    “But it’s for your own good!”

    “We will decide what’s good for you.”

    Tyranny. They risk going too far.

  8. “All feral blacks convicted of a crime should be given the choice of either sterilisation or deportation.”

    What if they’re convicted of crimes that shouldn’t be crimes?

  9. “All feral blacks convicted of a crime should be given the choice of either sterilisation or deportation.” Feral whites too please. South Georgia should earn its keep.

  10. “What if they’re convicted of crimes that shouldn’t be crimes?”

    As no black is going to be convicted of ‘hate’ crime’ – because, er, reasons– that doesn’t apply. But if you prefer, let’s make it ‘crimes against property or crimes of violence’.

    They don’t belong here, and they generally don’t thrive here. Those that integrate and contribute are welcome: the criminals we should export.

  11. “Feral whites too please.”

    Agreed. And South Georgia would make an ideal penal colony.

  12. “As no black is going to be convicted of ‘hate’ crime…’”

    Well, I was thinking of drug crimes, actually, but if you insist…

    So, do you agree that homophobes should be offered the choice of castration with a mallet or deportation to Somalia? They’d probably feel more at home there. The beards don’t like homosexuals, either. 🙂

    Never introduce any measure of social conformity enforcement you wouldn’t want to see in the hands of your enemies, because one day it will be.

  13. NiV

    “So, do you agree that homophobes should be offered the choice of castration with a mallet or deportation to Somalia?”

    Crimes of violence or against property. If homophobes engage in physical violence, then it’s sterlisation OR South Georgia for whites or Affrikka for blacks.

    “Never introduce any measure of social conformity enforcement you wouldn’t want to see in the hands of your enemies, because one day it will be.”

    So no prison then? Because Corbyn might lock me up…

  14. “Crimes of violence or against property.”

    OK. So in the case of “Criminal suspect (black. – Who’d have guessed?) flees police, tries to swallow incriminating material,” does that sound like a crime of violence, or against property?

    How about “is restrained by police…and dies”?

  15. “…does that sound like a crime of violence, or against property?”

    We don’t know. The deceased’s resisting of arrest didn’t look non-violent. And, in any event, I was referring to the rioters.

  16. “And, in any event, I was referring to the rioters.”

    Were you? It wasn’t clear. You didn’t mention the race (or feralness) of the rioters.

    But in any event, the riot was about the Armed Functionaries of the State (who of course we all know Can Do No Wrong) restraining and killing someone for (one would guess) selling drugs, something which arguably shouldn’t be a crime. I’m pretty sure the death penalty without trial or appeal is considered a bit harsh for the crime of resisting arrest – even you were only advocating Transportation. Is that just? Is that how we would want the Armed Functionaries of the State to treat *us* should we ever come to their attention?

    I don’t know all the details of the case, and wouldn’t want to jump to conclusions. That’s why we have trials. And I don’t think riots are an answer, even if the politicians who make these stupid laws do all need hanging. But I’ve long had the distinct impression that American cops tend to have a rather terminal way of dealing with anyone guilty of not immediately doing exactly whatever they say, no matter how unreasonable or illegal that might be, which I’m not keen on. Not in accordance with Peel’s principles, you know?

    I’m simply opening up the possibility for discussion, before we set about sterilising or deporting all the blacks for stealing loaves of bread, or whatever.

  17. What business is it of Government what substances I put into my body other than purity and measurement standards ?

  18. Off topic but has anyone looked into the reason the universities lecturers’ pension scheme has a £17.5bn deficit? Surely Sir Philip Green must be asked to fill the gap?

  19. NiV: “I don’t know all the details of the case, and wouldn’t want to jump to conclusions.”

    NiV a paragraph earlier: “Armed Functionaries of the State (who of course we all know Can Do No Wrong) restraining and killing someone for (one would guess) selling drugs”

    Well done on not jumping to conclusions.

    The police are obliged to enforce drug laws. If suspects resist arrest, the police are entitled to use force.

    I’m no great fan of plod and would be happy to see drugs legalised but I’m betting this easily avoidable* demise of a criminal scumbag** was his own fault.

    As for the oxygen thieves who are looking for any excuse to use violence, nick stuff and set fire to their neighbours’ property, fuck ’em. Every last one. I’d offer whoever is in nominal charge of Somalia $20k a head to take them off our hands.

    *Just say: “It’s a fair cop guv, I’ll come quietly”.
    **Do you reckon that if drugs were legalised that said lowlife would be a respectable small businessman with a thriving legal narcotics business?

  20. Off topic but has anyone looked into the reason the universities lecturers’ pension scheme has a £17.5bn deficit? Surely Sir Philip Green must be asked to fill the gap?

    The fund’s deficit increased by NINE BILLION POUNDS last year. NINE BILLION. Luckily the BBC mentioned in passing that this could be covered by raising tuition fees, so I’m sure all those Labour voting students are cool with paying through the nose to allow their professors to retire at age 60 on a nice pension. Because they are stupid indoctrinated mugs.

  21. “Do you reckon that if drugs were legalised that said lowlife would be a respectable small businessman with a thriving legal narcotics business?”

    There’s no money to be made in drugs. Cheap as okra to make. It’s government that makes them expensive by banning them. Should governments un-ban them, the cartels would collapse.

  22. “no money to be made in drugs”???
    Big Pharm would disagree. They would have fancy psychoactive drugs made in a trice.

  23. I suspect it’s the ‘made in a trice’ that points to the lack of profit on legal drugs.

    They’d be reliant on branding for profit. I suspect the alcohol and tobacco industries would be interested but not the big pharmas.

    Different sort of drugs.

  24. “Well done on not jumping to conclusions”

    What conclusions? Part of that was repeating what you said, part was stated to be a guess.

    “The police are obliged to enforce drug laws. If suspects resist arrest, the police are entitled to use force.”

    The “we were only obeying orders” defence?

    What is preferable, that a drug-dealing suspect escapes, or that an innocent-until-proven-guilty suspect who has not yet faced trial, who they quite possibly don’t even have any hard evidence against, dies?

    The police are human, and humans given unlimited authority naturally behave like they did in the Stanford Prison Experiment, if you don’t take precautions to prevent it. We sometimes forget about that.

    “Do you reckon that if drugs were legalised that said lowlife would be a respectable small businessman with a thriving legal narcotics business?”

    The problem is people get born into a screwed up culture, are failed by the education system, have no tradeable skills or capital, and are then abandoned there by the rest of society who call them “feral”, a “lowlife”, and think they should be shipped back to “Afrikka”. But there’s this big source of easy cash just hanging around on the streets, a trade that none of the legal businessmen are competing in. And the money funds the running of big organised gangs with lots of resources to recruit new business and keep it all going. With no other options on offer, the temptation is perfectly understandable.

    Legalising drugs and prostitution would remove a lot of the fuel from the fire, but it’s only part of the solution. Welfare isn’t a solution; it doesn’t get them back into production, or give them the skills to support themselves. Neither does locking them in a cage for several years with a bunch of other criminals and gang-members, and then expecting them to have somehow learnt the skills to be upstanding citizens when they come out and try to get a job with a criminal record. That’s sheer idiocy.

    Everyone is just getting angry and lashing out blindly at whoever they think is causing the problem, instead of trying to apply some intelligence.

    The system is broken, and will continue to churn out yet more broken people, even if you ‘get rid of’ this lot. Fix the system. Stop breaking people.

  25. “They’d be reliant on branding for profit. I suspect the alcohol and tobacco industries would be interested but not the big pharmas”

    If drugs were legalised but untaxed then presumably the prices would come right down, given the industrial production and easier supply chains, with only branding to hold them. (How effective would this be given that advertising is likely to be forbidden? Seems risky to expand an existing, reputable brand to cover drugs too but how would a new brand get traction?)

    With tax the prices could be higher than the illegal drugs. Would the guarantee of quality if you buy “the good stuff” really prevent skint addicts from going out and buying “the cheap stuff”? Would the War On Illegal Drugs still be fought, or would the issue of the illicit street dealer be seen as one of trading standards and quality control?

  26. “The system is broken, and will continue to churn out yet more broken people”

    In a land of liberty, there is no “system.” A land of opportunity has no responsibility to individuals, other than to provide security and enforce contracts.

    “The problem is people get born into a screwed up culture, are failed by the education system, have no tradeable skills or capital, and are then abandoned there by the rest of society who call them “feral”, a “lowlife”, and think they should be shipped back to “Afrikka”.”

    Nope. Ass backwards.

  27. “A land of opportunity has no responsibility to individuals, other than to provide security and enforce contracts.”

    First, this *is* providing security. The aim of the measure is to reduce crime, by stopping the creation of ever more criminals.

    Second, this confuses the two issues of when and for what reasons a government can overide individual liberty, and what sort of things free people should freely choose to do, out of common reciprocal morality.

    I mean, should society be encouraged to supply people with tins of beans, given that they are required for neither security nor the enforcement of contracts?

    Reciprocal morality holds that we help others so that they will help us. We don’t *have* to, even if people are in desperate trouble. But neither do they have to help us when we are. If you want to enhance the odds of the latter, it helps to supply the former.

    In a free market economy, society becomes wealthier and everyone benefits the more people there are in production. It therefore benefits each of us individually to see to it that everyone is well-educated and capable of contributing. The more people who can contribute, the cheaper all goods are and the less we have to work to survive.

    Also, our freedom to choose ways of life that harm us requires *informed* consent. If people freely choose to follow a cultural pattern that they *know* will result in in them being poor and criminal, and liable to punishment by society, then so be it. But I don’t think they do, and I think even many of those who do know feel they have little choice if they are to survive. People generally join criminal gangs out of self defence, because at least in a gang the other gang-members will defend you; on your own you’re outnumbered on every side.

    Likewise, if people freely choose to implement neglectful policies that they *know* will result in the creation of more criminals, a never-ending cycle of violence that threatens them directly and indirectly costs them in having to provide security, then so be it. You’re free to do that. But don’t complain about the consequences if you do.

    And finally, one of the main reasons that “land of liberty” policies have never received popular support is that the adherents are successfully portrayed as cold, callous, uncaring, unsympathetic, greedy, and selfish. Their attitude is “I’m alright Jack, screw you.” They have no intention of putting their hands in their *own* pockets to defend anyone else’s liberty, or opportunities in life; they only care about their own. And a lot of people don’t like it, and so they vote for the socialists instead.

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