Monday, February 13, 2012

Barron H. Lerner: Was Science Sidelined in Cigarette Debate?

Barron H. Lerner: Was Science Sidelined in Cigarette Debate?

The title sounds so amazing.
But it is anything but amazing.I'm reading another smear,another review of a book condemning something that people choose to do.
And honestly half of smokers don't I believe ever want to quit,they just want the Godawful nagging to stop.
People who want to quit,will quit.No magic pill or potion or patch will give a person willpower enough to stop doing something they enjoy.
I wonder if it will be the same with food,I wonder what sort of world I will wake up to ten or twenty years from now.
Sometimes it feels like I am screaming at the walls and no one is listening.

Proctor makes no attempt to interview Feinstein (now deceased) or others who he criticizes, some of whom have tried to justify their actions elsewhere. But this is not surprising. Although Proctor, a superb historian, readily admits that science is inherently messy, it is the use of scientific data to obfuscate that he identifies as the most venal and successful strategy of the tobacco industry. There are times, he believes, that science is black and white. 

So what of Proctor's challenge to his readers that they think outside the box? If an industry creates a product that is both dangerous and addictive and, ultimately, so unpleasurable that 85% of its customers want to quit, shouldn't society ban it? Maybe the tobacco industry's longtime claim that choosing to smoke is an "exercise in freedom" is a farce. 

I very much doubt I will read this book,even though I have read some doozies.

But right now I am reading an essay in book form called Smoke-Filled Rooms: A Postmortem on the Tobacco Deal .
It's honestly pretty good and it puts things in a perspective that I'm not used to,I don't think that's always a bad thing.

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