This is a turning point in a government controlled, preventative health care, smoking cessation program that is beginning to encroach on the fundamental civil liberties of Canadians.
This about sums up my take on the anti-smoking program:
"Instead of concentrating almost exclusively in the fight against malaria, which kills one child per minute, as well as AIDS and tuberculosis, this organization has embraced the politically fashionable and equally criminal agenda of lies and persecution already going on in Canada, Australia, United States, and England."
The docile, intoxicated smoker has happily acquiesced to a number of changes related to the comfort and happiness of others. Now, with the threshold of their doorways being darkened by the specter of government tyranny, a line has been crossed. As P. E. Trudeau said, "...there's no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation." I would propose, that at this time, we need to extend that kind of vision to the porch as well.
The Anti-smoking lobbies hypothesis, that smoking was the central cause of the cancer epidemic, was thrown for a loop when evidence began to show that non-smokers have similar rates of cancer as the smokers have.
From the critical thinker, James P. Siepmann, MD:
"Based upon what the media and anti-tobacco organizations say, one would think that if you smoke, you get lung cancer (a 100% correlation) or at least expect a 50+% occurrence before someone uses the word "cause."
Would you believe that the real number is <10 data-blogger-escaped-blockquote="blockquote">
All that could be done to prevent cancer through smoking cessation programs had been done by 1995. With the end of the funding in sight, 'interested parties' - or as I like to call them, 'The Do-Gooders Polgrum' - latched on to 'second hand smoke' theory. Linking work place health and safety to second hand smoke, opened the door to billions of dollars in potential litigation, the settlements from which could pay for more 'prevention' by the Do-Gooders Polgrum. The government went along with the new ideology because people with nothing better to do, like to complain; better they complain about their neighbors than about government. Also it muddied the waters for governments - the question as to who is responsible for public health becomes un-clear; is it the responsible government entity or the individual?
When neighbor sues neighbor sometime soon, the amount of smoke and the quality of it's toxicity will be the pivot points around which Canadians right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness will revolve. The slippery slope with this zero-tolerance mindset, is in the statistics, the degrees of exposure and the qualities that are assigned to second hand smoke. How do you measure the health impacts of wisps of smoke drifting from your neighbors balcony? What are the actual risks of casual, intermittent contact with second hand smoke?
The fact that smoke in the work place is considered a work place hazard, and that this has been established in legal precedence is, in my opinion, a good thing. Extending these rights to citizens in public space, which at the same time places undo hardship on others, is unconstitutional in this observers opinion. If one cannot enjoy your private space any legal way you like; then the calculations of degree must be out of whack.
So, the next time a car rolls by with it's toxic engine running, I'm suing!
From Health Canada, March 27, 2007:(my emphasis)
"Environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) or second-hand smoke
ETS is a combination of exhaled smoke and the smoke produced by an idling cigarette, cigar or pipe. It consists of solid particles, liquids and gases.
Scientists have identified more than 4,000 different chemical compounds in ETS, including nicotine, carbon monoxide, ammonia, formaldehyde, arsenic, dioxins and furans. More than 50 of these substances are known carcinogens. Others are known or suspected mutagens, capable of changing the genetic structure of cells. In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recently declared ETS to be a class-A-carcinogen.
Many of the components of ETS are also found in industrial effluents where they are treated as hazardous waste."
The italicized part, at the end of the above quoted paragraph, is the kicker, it exposes the inanity of the smoking cessation policy in light of the plethora of carcinogens coming from other sources. The same chemicals science has identified as carcinogens - that are found in tobacco combustion - are also found in industrial and transportation pollutants. The exhaust from your car has hundreds more of the 50 individual 'ETS's' the government has determined are present in second hand smoke. Half the pollutants in our air come from transportation - the other half from industrial effluents. The percentage of second had smoke, a non-smoker receives, in relation to the general atmospheric pollution in a day is so small it is not measurable.
Due to continuing scientific advances in chemistry, and lax regulation (a product of the current political landscape), the risk to human health is unknown for most industrial effluents. So the breadth and toxicity of the carcinogens in our environment are unknown.
In a head long rush that rides the funding stream, scientists and bureaucrats set aside evidence that doesn't jive with the funded theory. As well, a disproportionate number of cancers are being lumped together as Smoking Related Cancers without any real evidence. Mouth cancer (following the path of a cigarette smoke), throat, esophagus, lung, heart, and now even digestive tract and colon cancer are called smoking 'related' cancers.
The government would rather talk about - and fund - preventable cancer solutions; rather than other, broader threats to public health. The government does not want to talk about possible liability, to the general public or groups of sick workers, related to environmental decisions made decades earlier by other governments.
The Federal and Provincial governments have been studiously ignoring health concerns around industrial and transportation related pollutants, since they publicly became aware of them in the 1970's. Trade offs were made - the downsides of which the government of the day choose to accept - with out discussion, or consent of the people.
The 'Mommy State' knows best, and you don't need to know.
The liabilities resulting from a large class action suit could theoretically bankrupt the Federal government, a revolution, by another name. 'What if...' Federal Lawyers must have mussed back in 1974, '..What if, someday, the whole of Canada joined in a class action suit against the state over this stuff?' The second-hand smoke/anti-smoking Do-Gooders Pol Grum is a convenient distraction that shields governments and corporations from public liability.
They are/were worried a decision Canada made back in 1945, may come back to haunt them. After WWII the victorious US army ran on tires, the auto industry was suitably tooled for for trucks; so the Americans decided the auto industry would be the back bone of the post-war economy - which dove tailed nicely with the needs of the United States Army.
Canada had no choice, taking a different 'road' would have been economic suicide. We are now experiencing a depreciating quality of life that is a result of that decision. Smog days, tainted water and exploding cancer rates threaten to bankrupt the Public Health Care System. The average cancer patient loses 30% of their normally projected work life, not to mention their quality of life in retirement. For 25% of cancer sufferers, the cost is premature death.
Do-Gooders Pol Grum, half the funding for which comes from government, don't want to talk about the wastefulness of tackling one source of carcinogens - while ignoring all the others - as they would be biting the hand that feeds them. They obey the unstated message communicated through government actions: funding for cancer research, yes; funding for other environmental toxicology, no.
Also, when Do-Gooders Pol Grum use the word 'related' what they hope you are hearing is "caused", because they can't use 'caused', there is no proof. So the word-sters use 'related' a term you won't see in the scientific literature. As the following break-down illuminates, 'related' is a very big word.As death is related to life; so is smoking.
In the Canadian Cancer society most recent report, CANADIAN CANCER STATISTICS 2006(pdf), statistical information that compares rates of cancer among smokers is not even mentioned, like they don't bother to keep that stat. Why these draconian laws to reduce smoking if your not even going to keep the stats to see if it's working?
I think this Cancer Prevention Experiment has run it's coarse; it's getting twisted and scary. Time to talk about the responsibility of corporations to record data about what effluents they are discharging. Time for a transparent study of what's in industrial effluents, and what effects of that toxicity is. Time to stop funding Do-Gooders Pol Grum, and bring the discussion back with-in a scientific framework.