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Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Anti-Smokers Thwart Anti-Smoking Programme

Well, I've been a bit slack lately.  There hasn't been a great deal to write about, and the few things I might have written about were already covered by others. Also, I confess that I feel a bit lazy and uninspired. I cannot even be bothered to fire up Twitter or Facebook.  My Give-a-Fuck meter has bottomed out at -100.  This means it's time for a holiday, definitely somewhere warm and sunny, and preferably somewhere smoker-friendly.  Suggestions?

Anyway, I just spotted this BBC article about how the Welsh smoking ban has thwarted an anti-smoking programme.
A storyline in TV drama Casualty warning about the dangers of smoking had to be dropped because of Wales' anti-smoking laws, says the BBC.
Oh, the delicious irony.  The BBC wanted to do a storyline about the dangers of smoking, but smoking is so dangerous that the producers had to scrap the storyline and do something else because there is no exemption for film productions in Wales (like there is England).  I fucking love that.
The Welsh government wants to introduce an exemption, as there is in England, so actors can smoke on film sets. [...] The Welsh film industry has warned it could lose major drama productions to England because it is illegal for actors to smoke on film sets in Wales.
Naturally, the anti-smoker Inquisition headed up by ASH Wales, CRUK and BHF is outraged over the idea of any exemption to their hate legislation:
Anti-smoking group Ash said the law was designed to protect workers and should remain in force on public health grounds.

Ash press and campaigns managers Felicity Waters said: "This, we would argue, is a matter of convenience for the television industry - and health legislation should not be amended on commercial grounds.
"What industry is going to come next?"

Her stance was backed by the British Heart Foundation and Cancer Research UK, who said there was no safe level of smoke and that the ban on smoking indoors should be absolute.
It's really not about protecting anyone from smoking. It's all about protecting their precious legislation.  If an exemption were made for actors and film companies, then other industries would clamour for an exemption too, they say in a related article also on the BBC today, and we cannot have that happening:
Anti-smoking group Ash told Tuesday's sub-committee meeting that an exemption is "wholly unnecessary" and could lead to other industries appealing for an exemption.

The ban should remain in place to protect workers, it told [Welsh Assembly Members].

It says: "If this exemption is passed on the basis of commercially supporting a specific industry, we can expect a litany of requests from other industries such as pubs, clubs and the tourism industry for exemptions due to tough economic times."

Cancer Research UK director of tobacco control Dr Jean King said: "Our concern would be that other industries - and not just industries, but very powerful vested interests behind those industries - support those industries to get put forward cases."
Hold on a sec. Did ASH Wales just admit that the smoking ban has had a detrimental effect on pubs and clubs by way of suggesting that an exemption for them too would improve those businesses in these tough economic times?  I think they sorta did in a roundabout fashion. 

Obviously the pub trade would like to see an exemption, because they know that the smoking ban has destroyed their business.  But for the anti-smokers, it's a case of  screw everyone and their livelihoods in support of draconian legislation that nobody really wants except for the New Inquisition and its devout followers who know what is best for all of you.

Whilst I don't really care what happens in Wales (to be fair, does anyone outside of Wales?) or to BBC Wales in particular, I am a little interested to see what happens. I doubt it would lead to much clamouring for exemptions from other industries, judging by the meek whimpers we've seen from the "powerful vested interests" in England -- "meek" meaning almost nil. But if the Welsh decide to amend their legislation for the actors, dah-ling, and it subsequently pisses off this moronic, socialist cuntscab from Cardiff, then that would be a bonus in my view.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

January - A Time for Prohibitionist Propaganda

Nearly all of this BBC Magazine article written by Tom de Castella and titled "Alcohol-free January: Where can you go to avoid people drinking?" pisses me off.  I read it yesterday afternoon, and tried to avoid thinking about it, but then later I saw it was the eighth-most read article as of 11:30 p.m. last night (14 Jan 2013) and I couldn't ignore it any longer.

Where to start? How about the beginning: 
 January is a time for sobriety.
Says fucking who? January is merely the first month of the year. That's it. Wikipedia fails to mention anything about January being a time for sobriety. So does everywhere else. If anything, January is the month when New Year's resolutions are broken in spades.  I've never made a New Year's resolution, by the way.  It's not that I'm afraid of failing; it's more to do with whenever I decide to do or change something, I don't feel this daft need to wait until the beginning of the next year to do it. I'll do it immediately, or maybe the next day if I feel like procrastinating. A week tops.

It's the only time of year in the UK when a lot of people bond over not drinking.
No it isn't.  Ever hear of Alcoholics Anonymous? They do it year-round. Although membership statistics are hard to discern, the Plymouth AA site estimates about 40,000 UK members. That's "a lot" of people, who are bonding over not drinking.

Oh, this is a good one:
Those responding to campaigns like this can face a tricky month. Nobody wants to avoid socialising for a whole month, but with the British mania for social lubrication it's hard to avoid temptation.
OK, who ever said you have to avoid socialising in order to be sober?  And "British mania for social lubrication"? That makes it sound like every last one of us belongs in AA.  This is confusing the "traditional" pint with mates with mania -- and that's asinine.
Occasions that seem to have no particular connection to drinking are still alcohol-laden occasions in British society. Sport's associated with health, but how many people gather for a game of five-a-side football and hit the bar immediately afterwards?
Big deal. So do a lot professional athletes after a game.  Yet people aren't drinking whilst they're playing sports ... most of them, anyway.  Is it a fucking crime to have a pint or two after a match?  Perhaps a little something to help ease the pain of being kicked in shins for an hour? C'mon, give the people a break.
Five-a-side centres typically have a bar to cater for this desire and Carling launched a 2% beer for the post-football drinkers.
Sounds like a good business plan to me -- why let potential customers take their business elsewhere? And, oh my god, a 2% Carling for the post-football drinkers!  Ooh, those clever Big Alcohol people targeting the vulnerable post-football drinkers. That'll be their undoing, certainly.

In the "What you reading fer?" category: 
Book club usually means drinking. Many base themselves in pubs and even a Sunday lunchtime meeting can still mean endless glasses of cheap white wine.
I did not know that book clubs gather in pubs or that they were "alcohol-laden" events. Those that do gather in a pub probably do so because the pub is the traditional meeting place in most villages, towns and cities (again, excepting smokers these days).  It's been that way for centuries.  But this: "Endless glasses of cheap white wine."  Really?  Are you certain that "endless" is not a bit of an exaggeration, Tom?  Endless?  Fuck me. Endless. Who knew?
It's possible to turn a drink down, especially if you have religious dispensation. But for everyone else, eyebrows may be raised if one is not driving, pregnant, or on antibiotics.
Oh, noes! Not the raised eyebrows! How could anyone ever show their face in public again after being subjected to a raised eyebrow. Mortified, they'll likely hang themselves and make the news. There is almost a hint of conspiracy there, too.  It's all a sinister plot to get you to have a drink. Everyone else is drinking. If you don't, then you're not one of us, you're one of them.  It's all very Body Snatchers.

There's a rounds culture once you get there. You are buying into the collective.Anyone abstaining is sending a message to the group. "If someone opts out from the group it's almost like a rejection," says social anthropologist Kate Fox, author of Watching the English. "Others will get drunk and silly and the one opting out will look on a bit pious and disapproving." 
Well, there is that.  Of course, you can still buy a round for your mates even if you're on the tonic water with lime.  In fact, if you're worried about how others might perceive your abstinence, you can fib and tell them that your drink is a double gin and tonic.
So what can the alcohol abstainer do without becoming a hermit? Lobby group Drink Aware suggests karaoke [...]
Heh. You could, but do you really want to? The only time I ever did karaoke was in 1991, in Japan, and we were all absolutely thrashed, which I understand is the preferred Japanese method.  I think most people only ever attempt karaoke after a few drinks, because that's when you feel like a rock star the most.

While we're on the topic of suggested things to do whilst sober, these gems appeared in the BBC article in the sidebar:
  • Ride around on London Underground, where alcohol has been banned since June 2008
Are you fucking kidding me?  Ride around on the Tube. We only take the Tube when we have to take the Tube. Why the hell would we willingly subject ourselves to being sardined with a bunch of people who have just come from the pub?  Think this one through, BBC.  Think it through...
  • Visit Fitzpatrick's in Rawtenstall, Lancashire, UK's last temperance bar, serving wide range of cordials
There's a reason why it's the last temperance bar in the UK.  I'll give you one guess.
  • Rave at Breakin' Out in Wales, alcohol-free music festival (2012 headliners included Tinchy Stryder)
To begin, let's set aside that it's in Wales (and why am I not surprised at all by that?). Let's also avoid asking the question: who the fuck is Tinchy Stryder? (Sorry. I asked it anyway.) And this is the real important bit, it happened last fucking year, in September!  Ain't nothing planned for this year yet, certainly not in January, when "a lot of people" want to bond over not drinking, apparently. Way to be timely, BBC and Tom.

The BBC's idea of a good time? Jeez.

There's plenty more in the article to sneer at, but I've covered enough.

It comes down to this: If you don't want to drink on a night out, then don't. You don't have to be pregnant or on antibiotics to say no thanks. You don't need to make excuses.  The only person you need to answer to is yourself.  Articles like the above from the BBC often reinforce the warped agenda of the prohibitionists, that you are all victims and helpless addicts, unable to take control of your life, or that there is something inherently wrong about the British way of life and you.

It's sad that there are those who seek to destroy British culture and traditions in the name of paternalism and socialism.  They want you to feel ashamed for who you are and the things you choose to do.  But you don't need to feel ashamed because you want to have a pint (or "endless glasses of cheap white wine") and a fag. Before the smoking ban, the heart of almost all communities was the pub and it was a natural place to meet up even if you were going somewhere else. The anti-smokers ripped out that heart and stamped on it.  Now some of the same people have moved on to alcohol control. And they won't be satisfied until every last one of us is forced to conform and adhere to their beliefs.

I don't believe that Britain has a drinking problem. The one problem we do have is that we lack the national will to once again round up all of the puritans, march them up the gangway, hoist anchor and ship them off to another country where they can torment each other with their misguided religious beliefs and leave us in peace to live out our lives as we see fit.

Maybe history will repeat itself...  one can only hope... for really rough seas... and a bit of scurvy, too.

UPDATE:  I've just seen that Frank Davis also wrote about this article, which you can read here.  It gave him the creeps, too.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Irish Oppression

Over at Head Rambles, Grandad comments briefly on the story about draft legislation to ban smoking in cars with children present in Ireland:
This has nothing to do with children.

This has nothing to do with health.

This is just another petty vindictive move by a bunch of small minded bigots who have a pathological hatred of smokers, or indeed of anyone enjoying themselves.
Too right.  I could write another 6000 words or more on the topic, but then I found this unrelated article about Ireland's Health Minister, Dr James Reilly, and figured that the screen cap below pretty much summed up everything I could have said anyway:

Health Minister James Reilly is a cunt
I must presume that few people like this man cunt.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Back to Black

This is a spoofed image - Andrew Black's presentation on How to rig a public consultation
You would be forgiven for thinking otherwise, based on everything we know about the so-called public consultation of plain packaging of tobacco products to date, but the above image is spoofed.  Not genuine. Fake.  The original image is here, and it was captured from a PDF of a presentation that Andrew Black gave to a host of unelected, interfering, thieving technocrats at the WHO headquarters in Geneva on 16 March 2012.

Curiously, the presentation is listed under the heading of "Effective domestic consultation" in the final programme for the two-day workshop on trade-related issues (indeed, the PDF (found here) is named "Effective domestic consultation - UK"):

Domestic my arse!
It is curious not because of the word "effective" (which it certainly will be for the New Inquisition) but instead because of the word "domestic."  You see, when we think about UK public consultations, we assume that the consultations are domestic consultations meant exclusively for the British public and businesses to respond with their views.  This assumption is wrong.  As a matter of fact, any nation's government and population outside of the EU can respond to a UK public consultation, including countries like Brazil or, say, North Korea and its ideologically-twinned sister nation, Australia.  More important, any responses from foreign entities outside of the UK (or the EU, if we choose to make that exception) will be included and passed on to British MPs.  So it would seem that the words "public" or "domestic" no longer hold their true meanings when it comes to the affairs of Britons.

I am, of course, every bit as shocked as anyone else might be by the revelation that Australia's government would respond to a UK public consultation as well as have the temerity to ask for an extension of time to respond.  But there is nothing at all preventing any foreign person, organisation or government from responding to a UK public consultation.  Nothing.  I know, because I've spent the past several days reading everything I could find about the rules and procedures for UK consultations. There are only recommended guidelines, which say nothing about who is entitled to respond.  (If I missed something, please advise in the comments.)

The consultation document itself reads:
"The purpose of this consultation is to seek the views of interested people, businesses and organisations on a policy initiative that would require the packaging of tobacco products to be standardised [...]"
And it lists the "target audience" as:
PCT Cluster CEs, NHS Trust CEs, SHA Cluster CEs, Directors of PH, Local Authority CEs, Businesses, Public Health Organisations, Academics, Members of the Public
I don't see anything about foreign governments or citizens from other countries as acceptable respondents.  But then again, I don't see anything that excludes foreign governments and their citizens.  So this is the problem. A lack of clarity and definition. We have wrongly assumed that UK public consultations were intended to be solely domestic matters (or perhaps EU-wide).  This is what we get for making assumptions, I suppose.

Back to the purpose of a consultation, is it really to seek the views of interested people?  Do your opinions really matter?  Perhaps not, according to the sixth slide of Andrew Black's presentation:

Andrew Black doesn't give a fuck what you think, plebs
Allow me to put that slide into proper perspective by translating it for us plebs. What it really says is this:
  • Through consultation, the Tobacco Programme group of the Department of Health seeks to include only our views, the evidence we asked to be created and the wholly-biased opinions of those who have vested interests in tobacco control.
  • All other opinions will be de-emphasised and/or discarded in order to give Government a one-sided view and shore up our agenda.
  • The people most likely to respond, apart from tobacco controllers and the public health religion's grand inquisitors, are those who will be detrimentally affected and they do not count.
And what better way to ensure all of the above than to install your own people, namely Andrew Black, to oversee the entire consultation process, from start to finish, to obtain the results you want.  To get a better picture of what I mean, we need to look no further than what the Tobacco Programme is, in Andrew Black's own words (PDF - page 22, section
The Tobacco Programme at the Department of Health (DH) is the national coordinating mechanism for the United Kingdom for non-devolved aspects of tobacco control policy.
So, it all starts there, almost every last bit of smoker hate and deception originates from the DH's Tobacco Programme.  All of the taxpayer-funded anti-smoker groups, like Smokefree South West or Fresh NE to name but only two, all answer to the Tobacco Programme Manager, Andrew Black.   That's right, Black coordinates their every move.

And, incredulously, this is the guy put in charge of the consultation?  Can we really expect any impartiality?

I think we all know the answer to that.  I think we all know what to expect.

The only question left is:  What are we going to do about it?


Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Planet of the Prohibitionists

Let's begin this blog post with a new, short video of The Root of All Evil in deep contemplation:

Any questions?  Yeah, I thought as much.

So, as we've learnt in the above vid, Simon Chapman is all about smear tactics and petty insults. This is unsurprising.  True to form, The Root of All Evil pens yet another puerile opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Herald to simultaneously gloat over Australia's successful hate campaign (i.e. its plain packaging law) and to denigrate and smear a guy who is just trying to make an Australian buck:
A small businessman from Queensland got his 15 minutes of fame by announcing that smokers could now buy stickers to cover the front and back of the new pack. [...]

New titles planned are rumoured to include ''I'm an adult, but like a child I hide my eyes from scary things''; ''I have an IQ 1 point higher than it takes to grunt''; ''Please buy me: no one else is"; ''I choose to hide from the truth''.

Since launching his stickers in early December, he's been deluged with a whole 386 Facebook "likes", and 1319 views of his YouTube promotion. A whole 24 people have followed him on Twitter, 21 of whom live outside Australia [...]. Like all the opportunists who did their dough with previous cover gimmicks for the older health warnings, our Queensland entrepreneur looks like an early candidate for the 2013 Darwin award for business acumen.
There is a great deal to glean from the above.  First, he doesn't mention the company or the businessman by name, which is cowardly (he would argue that he didn't want to advertise it, but that's bollocks).  If you're going to attack someone, then have the fucking balls to name them, Professor Chapman.  Second, it's clear that the Root of All Evil is not going to win any awards for comedy -- those examples of rumoured new titles are lame. The only people who would appreciate them are the sad, despicable prohibitionists that lap up anything Chapman says.  And third, it is evident that The Root of All Evil has a unhealthy obsession over how many Twitter followers he has or others have. Like it matters. He should really consider getting some kind of professional help to deal with that pathological obsession. It's enormously sad.

Speaking of pathology, one wonders if The Root of All Evil is suffering from dementia or is simply making shit up.  This bit from the opinion piece is something he repeats often:
The International Tobacco Survey that gathers data from dozens of nations to compare progress in tobacco control, has found that 95 per cent of smokers regret having started. About a quarter make a serious quit attempt each year.
Or here in this vid, where Chapman attacks James Paterson, he says:
"Look, 95% of people who smoke regret having ever started, and then we have 40% of them try to quit each year ..."
So, I looked up this "International Tobacco Survey" to see how accurate that 95% regret statement is.  It turns out the International Tobacco Survey didn't exist under that particular name, and what Chapman meant was the surveys done for the The International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project (ITC), in particular the 4-Country ITC survey of Australia, Canada, America and the UK (which I will come to momentarily).

But he didn't say that.

What he said was the "survey that gathers data from dozens of nations ... has found that 95 percent of smokers regret having started."  This is wrong on all counts.

According to the ITC project's site, the survey covers 22 nations so far.  That's not dozens. It's not even two-dozen.  That's one bald-faced lie, then.  In Public Health, it's perfectly acceptable to make shit up or exaggerate, and so they do it all the time.  Of course, the trouble with habitual lying is that it's so terribly difficult to remember what lies you've told, or when you've told the truth, so you end up contradicting yourself, or perhaps your forgot what is true, or you start to believe your own oft-repeated lies. Indeed, see this comment from July 2012 where the Root of All Evil explains the source of that 95% regret statement:

"The reality is of course rather more banal with national data from 4 nations showing that some 95% of smokers regret ever taking it up and around 40% making serious attempts to quit each year."  (emphasis added)

So a little bit of truth there, but still making shit up.

Because it's not 95% of smokers that regret having started.  It seems that Professor Chapman has decided to add 5% to Dr Geoffrey T. Fong's* paper in 2004  (PDF 256kb), which shows the regret percentage at 90% according to survey data taken in 2002:
The proportion of smokers who agreed or agreed strongly with the statement ‘‘If you had to do it over again, you would not have started smoking’’ was extremely high—about 90%—and nearly identical across the four countries.
(*If the name Fong sounds familiar to you, it's because we pillaged his photo album for this post, and this one.  He is also responsible for the ITC project.)

That 90% was derived from a simple averaging of the following percentages:

Canada 91.3%
America 91.2%,
UK 89.2%
Australia 89.6%.

90.325% regret, then.  In 2002 or something.

However, the ITC survey is a continuous monster. Like all things prohibition and public health, it never ends, and so it is replenished with new data every so often, as well as including new countries.  I don't have access to the raw data, but I did briefly scan a few of the frequency tables and/or the reports for a few countries -- but not all, because I got practically bored to death doing so and decided I really didn't give all that much of a fuck about it, and some reports neglect to mention the info anyway (see China, for instance, which is the great bane of tobacco control zealots everywhere).  From what little I did look at, another picture of this regret percentage emerges (links provided, but some of these reports are a bit large):

Bangladesh 88%
France 87.7%
Germany  77.5%
Korea 88%
Netherlands 75%
Thailand 92.6%

Looks like Germany and the Dutch kind of fucked things up there, eh?  Best not to mention that and be selective over which data you decide to include and propagandise.  But since we're being selective, what if we averaged those two countries in with the 4-Country data?  What do we get?  About 85.6%.  If we averaged them all...

You know what... who cares?  85% versus 90% versus 95%.  It's all pointless statistics that say nothing at all.  I do think if one is going to endlessly cite the same pointless percentage, then one ought to cite the correct pointless percentage rather than inflating it, because that goes towards one's credibility, one's integrity and honesty.  But whatever, we're used to a lack of integrity in Public Health. No lie too great nor small to further an agenda of hate.  Besides, regret is an intangible emotion based on subjectivity.  One's level of regret for anything can change depending on the time of day.  The reasons for regret are varied and one question in survey doesn't adequately explain why some people regret having started smoking  -- perhaps it's the constant badgering by public health zealots and governments. I could understand that. Regret should not be the basis for legislative policy formulation, for banning things, unless you're in the public health racket. Then it's worth a research paper or two.

I suppose after answering a couple of hundred questions (see survey, pg 85 -- this question comes in at number 252 out of well over 300 questions), that anyone would have regrets ... for simply existing on this Planet of the Prohibitionists.  Of course, the reward bribe for doing the survey is a $20 gift voucher (see pg 2 of the survey) which they are quite happy to dangle in front of you when you don't want to play along.  Question 6 on pg 5:
This is an important survey because it is being conducted among smokers as well as non-smokers throughout the world. It is important to obtain a good representative sample. In appreciation of your involvement in our study, we will send you [payment].
So I hope that $20 voucher was worth it, smokers. My advice is to STOP participating in these zealot's surveys, focus groups, experiments and all of it.  Because everything you say can and will be used against all of us to force us to adhere to their evil plans under threat of gross penalties or jail.  Hmm. Perhaps we need to develop a Smoker's Covenant. You know, include things like, "Thou shalt not answer surveys."  "Thou shall kick survey takers in the scrotum."  I'll give it some thought, maybe run it by a few folk.

In any event, STOP playing their game. OK?  Sorry, you get the point.

So, that company that the ever-deceptive Root of All Evil wouldn't mention?  It's called Boxwrap.  And the way capitalism works, that is when the government doesn't deliberately interfere with free enterprise, is that if people want a product a company sells, it will survive.  Its survival won't depend on the opinions of lying, deceptive, socialists and prohibitionists like The Root of All Evil.  No matter how many Twitter followers they have.

Boxwrap can be found on Twitter here:

And I close this post with another short video.  Because I can. Loving the dub-step music at the end.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

A Matter of Class

Today, I had planned to write about the husky queen of double standards, Diane Abbott, but I see that others already have it covered (h/t: DP) and I doubt I could add much to the conversation.  It should be a bit odd that someone who evidently lacks the self-control to avoid eating every chocolate biscuit that has ever haplessly strayed within arm's reach is seeking to dictate what others can eat.  ("Just one more wafer-thin mint, madam?)  But this is not odd. The ruling class continues to hypocritically dictate the terms of our pitiful, meaningless existences with their traditional mantra of Do As I Say, Not As I Do.  The kicker?  We let them do it.  We expect them to do it.  And they know it.

So, something else for this dreary Sunday afternoon then.

I've been sitting on this one a while. It's one of those things you discover accidentally and think, "What the hell am I going to do with that?" You just know there will be a use for it someday, so you save it on the hard drive into a folder that is the equivalent of a home's junk drawer, and wait for the day to arrive when it becomes relevant, if it ever does. Eventually, the clutter becomes intolerable, so you figure you ought to do something with this stuff.  Consider this a bit of housecleaning.

One of the many hundreds of things that anti-smokers cannot tolerate is the so-called "promotion of smoking," which includes everything from a cigarette packet's logo to the person forced to stand outside in the cold to have a fag -- that's all promotion to them.  Even so, a photograph of someone smoking is all it takes to make their blood boil, especially when it depicts an athlete enjoying the delicious delights of a smoke, but it's orders of magnitude worse when a photo appears on the site of a company that sells cycling clothing and other accessories.  For instance, this photo on Rapha's blog in June 2012 (look away now, anti-smokers, look away!!!):

Credit: Rapha Panache 2012 Blog

Oh, the horror!  A cyclist is smoking!  This is intolerable!  A child might see it and get cancer and die!  Something must be done!

Indeed, keen cyclist (or perhaps it's her husband who is keen) and anti-smoker Dreadful Arnott was not best pleased by this grotesque imagery.  Outraged, she fired off this scathing message to members of her (or her husband's) cycling group:

Dear fellow Lambeth cyclists

Once again Rapha have associated its brand (and the name of its CEO) with smoking

At least this time it's a cigar instead of a fag or a rollie as in the previous two examples, but it's still promoting smoking.

Using smoking in Rapha marketing promotes smoking as cool making Rapha the dupe of a multi-billion dollar industry who are denied the right to advertise themselves because their products kills half of their users.

I have an axe to grind as I run Action on Smoking and Health (ASH). I have emailed the CEO Simon Mottram and would ask anyone who cares about health to do the same.


All the best.


(I've screen captured the message, below, in case the link breaks or the message is deleted.) 

Click to enlargify

Well, that message is filled with the usual hysterical claptrap we'd expect from the likes of the Dreadful, and I doubt that Rapha gives a flying fuck what Arnott thinks. But one thing in particular in her message does stand out.  Did you spot it?  No?  Look again. I can wait.






See it now?  Not sure?  OK, enough teasing.  It is this line:   "At least this time it's a cigar instead of a fag or a rollie [...]"

Whoa.  I see how it is.  In Deborah Arnott's mind, cigars are in a different class than "fags or rollies."  I wonder why that is.  I could come up with several reasons for this belief, this apparent exception, but I'll leave it to you to come to your own conclusions.  Feel free to opine in the comments; I look forward to reading them.

Anyway, smoking cycling professionals of the world, why wait until after your bike ride to have that fag or cigar?  Go ahead and light up at any time:

Fuck yeah!
Credit: via via, it seems

Saturday, 5 January 2013

From the Cold, Dead Fingers of Young People

Unbeknownst to me, and all of America, it would seem that you are not an adult until you reach the age of 24, in the minds of activist doctors anyway.  Wait. I've got ahead of myself.  Let me start earlier.

There was this bullshit tweet by the Root of All Evil.

OK, let's just focus on the substance of that tweet for a moment.

In 2010, from which this tweet refers to, there were 74.1 million children in America.  That's the population of Britain, mind.

So, based on stats in the link The Root of All Evil tweeted, 99.9953% of kids in America did not and won't get cancer in their childhood, mainly because those most at risk of any kind of cancer are usually older than 60, so that's a bollocks comparison to begin with, but I'm unsurprised that he would cite it.

Infections that people most often die from, including kids, are usually acquired in a hospital, but even so this isn't all that common amongst children, in fact it's incredibly rare. Fewer than 1000 American kids.

And "congential probs" (typically congenital heart defects) are very slightly more common than infections, but are usually treatable if you're aware that you have a defect, and you can expect to live many, many years past childhood, yet there is no guarantee. Many people who die from congenital heart defects were entirely unaware it existed.

So, all three of those comparisons are total bullshit.  You can cherry pick the data all you like and make up any sort of bollocks comparison to anything else, but it means fuck all.  It means you're an arse with a particular axe to grind.  Naturally, anyone and everyone who works in Public Health will twist and distort everything to suit their agenda.  The Root of All Evil is no different.

But Chapman didn't make up the stats, he merely distorted them after they were initially distorted by both Judith S. Palfrey, M.D., and Sean Palfrey, M.D. (hereafter the Palfreys M.D.). And this is where it gets peculiar.  The legal age of adulthood in America is 18.   But the Palfreys M.D., well they've decided to reclassify 18-24 year-olds as children (or young people).  Now, when anyone says "young people," I naturally assume they refer to anyone who is not a legal adult.  So for Americans, anyone 17 or younger would be a "young person," the very legal definition of a "child."  Young adults are not "young persons."  They are adults, who are younger than older adults.  Even now, at 41, my older neighbours consider me to be a "young adult."  In their mind, I am young, even though I'm now middle-aged.  So it's semantics and perception.  But statistics and science demand accuracy and integrity, not personal perspective and clear bias.  So the Palfreys M.D have skewed their data to include up to 24-year-olds to suit their anti-gun agenda.  And the Root of All Evil then called all of them "kids."  They aren't kids. 18-24 year-olds in America are not fucking "kids."  They're legal adults.  Dickhead.

So, here's a graph that the Palfreys M.D. provided with their paper in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Now, you can't tell from the graph unless you read the paper, but they claim there were 6,570 "gun-related" deaths amongst "children and young people" aged 1 -24.  But how many were truly young people, you know, the "legal children?"  

This site claims that:

In the U.S. for 2010, there were 31,513 deaths from firearms, distributed as follows by mode of death: Suicide 19,308; Homicide 11,015; Accident 600.

So, the total gun deaths are 30,923, of which 62.4389% were suicides, 35.6207% were homicides (includes cops killing civilians), and 1.9403% were accidental discharges.  But this doesn't give us a breakdown by age.  There is a clue, however, why the Palfreys M.D. included up to 24-year-olds in their figures, and that comes from this line (emphasis added):
In the US the overall firearm death rate was 10.2 per 100,000, the overall firearm homicide rate 4.1 per 100,000, and the overall homicide rate 6.0 per 100,000, with firearm homicide rates highest persons 15 to 24 years of age.
Ah, so it is the 15-24 year-olds who account for the highest homicide rates, which just so happens to be the age group most likely to be in a gang.  But 18-24 year-olds are not "children."  They are adults.  They shouldn't be added to the statistics and the graph. Naturally, the Palfreys M.D. are playing fast and loose with their data to suit an agenda.

In order to discover how many firearms deaths (for any reason) occurred amongst the under-18s in the US for the year 2010, I had to visit the CDC's fatal injury report generator page, because I couldn't find anything anywhere that listed gun deaths by age.  Here's a breakdown:

There were a total of 1,337* firearms deaths for the under-18s, or 4.3236% of all firearms deaths in America for 2010.

98 (7.3298%) were unintentional.

838 (62.6776%) were homicides.

375 (28.0478) were suicides.

26 (1.9446) are undetermined / unknown.

(*yes, my hacker geek friends, I'm aware that 1337 spells "leet".)

Now I would probably discount the suicide deaths, because anyone who truly wants to commit suicide will find any means available to do it. But let's include them anyway.  Altogether, only 0.0018% (1,337 out of 74.1 million) of legally-defined children in the United States died as a result of firearms.

Compare those figures with the total deaths of all children under 18 in the US, which equals 9,028 (or 0.01218% of 74.1 million).

14.8094% of all the children's deaths are related to guns.

Motor vehicle deaths (all types), however, tally 2,833 (or 31.3801%), more than twice the number of gun-related fatalities.

And are there any paediatricians in America calling for cars to be banned?  Pish. No. Don't be stupid. Cars don't kill kids (particularly those fancy, expensive Jaguars). Only guns do. And smoking. Bugger! I almost forgot about smoking.  There doesn't seem to be a selection on the CDC's site for kids who died "from smoking."  So, I picked Fire/Burn deaths instead, because fires only happen because there are smokers. That was 389 youngsters. 

Anyway, meet the Palfreys M.D., so that if you happen across them on a public street (wherever they live), you can give them the middle finger and call them rude names for being activist doctors with a clear agenda to distort the truth in support of their gun control beliefs.

Judith Palfrey - Nutcase
Sean Palfrey - Nutcase
Jeez. Aren't they Palfreys M.D. cute?  Don't ya just wanna give them a big ol' bear hug?  I know I do.  So do some of their contemporaries.  Have a look at these comments:

To the first commenter, I agree that the NEJM should stick to medical topics (but they won't), and to the second commenter, a lack of research by medical professionals is what we've all come to expect from the medical community, particularly editors of any medical journal. We don't trust doctors, particularly activist doctors and medical journal editors who are just as bad as any politician.

By the way, if you were curious, the 18 to 24-year-olds' gun-related deaths equalled 5,244.  Hmm.  1,337 versus 6,581 (the CDC's total is 11 more than what they counted), and 6,581 is almost five times more than the actual "children and young people's" deaths.  Which figure would you choose if you were in the Public Health / Activist Doctor racket?  You got it! The bigger one!

Just to put a different point onto the end of this blog post here's an interesting tidbit from Just Facts. The Gun Control people like the Palfreys M.D. in America are enormously stingy bastards when it comes to political contributions:

From the 1990 election cycle through August 22, 2010, the following political contributions were made by gun rights and gun control interest groups to federal politicians:

 Donations to
 Donations to
to Dems
 Percent to
Gun Rights  $22,467,579  $3,231,405  $19,195,400  14%  85%
Gun Control  $1,888,886  $1,776,310  $112,326  94%  6%

Oh, wait. Sorry. I'm not done yet.  Let's have a brief look at what sort of tweets-in-reply to the Root of All Evil's bullshit tweet were:

Dey be coming for yo fags, yo booze, yo soda pop, and yo guns, motherfuckers!

Friday, 4 January 2013

Weapons of Mass Deception

"We have accepted the responses to the consultation, including petitions, postcards and emails, in good faith."
                 --  Andrew Black, Tobacco Programme Manager

Except the Department of Health Hate has only done so when it is in support of plain packaging of course. Because every organisation who ran campaigns opposing plain packaging has been forced to prove that everything was above board.

Take, for instance, the numerous DH e-mails to Simon Clark of FOREST demanding answers to how Hands Off Our Packs ran its signature campaign.

And this:

Or how about the DH and government demanding that Imperial Tobacco prove its signatures were genuine (emphasis added)?
Imperial Tobacco was asked by the Government to prove that thousands of postcards opposing plain packaging on cigarette packets were not fakes after questions were raised over the similarity of the handwriting.
That's just two of the many demands (and bullshit complaints invented by the tobacco control industry) they've made against the opposition to plain packs, and lest we forget, the libellous APPG newsletter that Stephen Williams MP signed.

But when our side proves that plain packs supporters deliberately cheated and tried to rig the campaign in their favour, time and time again, and asks the DH what it's going to do to address it, Andrew Black baulks at such a suggestion:

Andrew Black is definitely a cunt

Well, if it's not necessary, Andrew Black, then why ask FOREST, HOOPs and Imperial to prove that their signatures are genuine?   Oh, I see how it works. One set of rules for you guys and the government who support plain packs, and another for everyone else who disagrees with plain packs.  Gotcha.

Andrew Black is a tool.  He is just but one of the weapons of mass deception that the entire tobacco control industry regularly uses to cheat and rig public consultations (and apparently, Australia is part of the British public these days); to deceive the public and, ultimately, con elected ministers into believing there is overwhelming public support; to steal our hard-earned money and use it against it ordinary citizens who have done nothing at all to any of these people except for failing to do what tobacco control industry wants them to do.

I, for one, do not trust Andrew Black.  Based on everything I've seen about him, I think he's a shady, duplicitous, dirty-dealing, no-good varmint, which is probably why he works for the likes of the tobacco control industry.  They are all weapons of mass deception. That's just my opinion, but I'm certain it is correct.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Bent Sticks

The trouble with children is that they grow up to be adults.

The trouble with adults is that too many are worried about everyone else's children and use them as an excuse to change other adults' behaviour.

Continuing on my theme of not giving a shit about anyone's children this year, I feel obligated to advise the world that your kids are no more special than anyone else, and as an added bonus I'd like to let everyone know that there is no such thing as the perfect childhood. Don't be angry with me. It's true. There are millions and millions of kids just like yours, most of them have parents who feel precisely about them as you do about yours. That is a lot of special. Certainly, most parents believe their children are the most important creatures in the world, which is how it should be if you are a parent. It is, after all, your job to look after your kids. This should be an instinctual act. For most of you, it is.  And so you dote on them, and armed with an iPhone you take 400 practically-identical photos of your child's first birthday, or video the first time your child uses the toilet on its own, or when its taking a bath, or riding a bicycle, or just being annoying.  Hell, some of you don't even wait until your child is out of the womb and you're endlessly snapping pictures of your swollen bellies, or videoing the little parasite thrashing about inside of you.  It's all very sweet.

And often nauseating when you decide to share it with the rest of the world on Facebook or Twitter, or badger your colleagues at work with e-mails of your spawn doing nothing more than looking gormless with spittle and chocolate Ready Brek dribbling down its pudgy chin.  Thanks for showing us the ultrasound scans, too.  No, I couldn't make out that the hideous, distorted, blob-like mass inside of you was giving a thumbs-up (how wonderful for you!), it looked like a tumour to me, but I'll nod my head just the same if it means you'll take that horror show away from my desk and leave me a-fucking-lone so I can work in relative peace.  (Don't even get me started on the inappropriateness of bringing your screaming anklebiters into the office during working hours -- there really oughtta be a law to put a stop to that practice.)

Because from my perspective, your children (and especially your foetuses) are not special to me, as they are only pint-sized human beings that will more than likely grow up into adults who may or may not be a good, decent people.  Pretty much the same as anyone else, save for minor cosmetic differences.  Virtually indistinguishable from everyone else's kids. No more special than my elderly neighbours, or the postman.

Somebody once said to my wife that "children are like bent sticks, that need to be straightened out."  The first time you hear or read that, you think, "Hmm, that seems a bit harsh. Really? Bent sticks? Oh, I dunno about that."  But, when you really think about it, straightening them out is precisely what parents and society do to children -- mould the little dumplings into whatever shape they will take on as adults, for better or worse.  And so little bent sticks are precisely what they are, or wads of clay if you will. Sometimes, despite everyone's best efforts, they stay bent.  It may not be a nice thing to say, you don't have to like it, but that doesn't make it any less true. 

Of course adults do not agree on what is best for the children. That's a given, and it's more or less where all of the trouble really starts.  "Spare the rod, spoil the child!" some say.  Others cry, "That's horrible child abuse!"  Regardless of anyone's view on that, one thing that they can all pretty much agree on is that "something must be done!"  Whatever that something is, it too often becomes an unnecessary law that impinges upon liberties that adults might have enjoyed, a law drafted and voted on by those pretending to give a shit about your children in order to curry favour with you and other special interest groups, and possibly to feel like they have achieved something important and noble whilst they continue to rob you blind.

In this day and age, we seem to have exalted children to a god-like status.  No sacrifice too great for the children, and anything that could theoretically harm our ability to worship the children and this notion of an ideal childhood must be wiped off the face of the planet. It doesn't matter what that anything is.  Our society has transmogrified into a fearful, risk-averse, protect-the-children-at-any-cost offshoot of a bizarre cult where everyone could live forever if they do exactly as they're told. It doesn't matter that this anything might employ thousands of people, jobs which help parents feed other children for a greater net gain of survival overall. If obliterating that anything means potentially saving just one child, then screw the adults who work for the anything and their families too.  Those families don't matter, they don't need to survive; it's the theoretical child that matters, the child who cannot actually be counted, but would exist and be grossly harmed if only you had faith enough to believe.

Now, I'm not suggesting for a moment that children should be left alone and unprotected, nor am I saying that we should go back to using the poor, skinny children as nimble chimney-sweeps (although this does sort of amuse me). Yes, your children are special to you, and they should be. But they aren't any more special than anyone else on this planet.  You see, at some point in our recent history we have confused the little tykes' naivety, their inability to understand the world and the consequences of their actions, with innocence. Naivety and innocence are not the same thing. I remember being a child.  I remember what kids of every age were like. I wouldn't class any of the kids I grew up with as "innocent." Some of them were vicious, horrible mini-tyrants from hell.  Selfish, devious, conniving, impudent, "special" monsters.  Not all kids, mind you, for some of them were kind. Still, even some of those waited until they grew up before becoming monsters.

We often hear about "a child's potential."  This is an abstraction. An immeasurable quantity with uncountable and contradictory variables that defy calculation. Although I imagine many have tried, there are no formulae to calculate the potential of any given child (notwithstanding pseudo-arbitrary legal calculations designed to compensate a family for the loss of a loved one, but those are intended to be punitive).  We cannot possibly know with any certainty how any child will turn out, what they will achieve, what they may become, which of course enhances the mystique of our collective child-worshipping habit. Every child therefore has unlimited potential to be anything we could imagine for them, superheroes and world-savers all of them. Conversely, every child could become a serial killer, a destroyer of worlds, villainous and evil.  Realistically, no one has unlimited potential, and the vast majority of people on this planet will not murder anyone in their lifetime.  It's not entirely left up to chance. Some kids are better off than others, surely, but even this is no guarantee or reaching one's unknown potential. We cannot even be certain that any child will reach adulthood or its third birthday or eighth or fifteenth.  But we persist with the abstraction of unlimited potential nevertheless and duly bestow this magical quantity to each and every child. Although incalculable, there is a word for doing this.  It's called hope.

Hope is but one of many things that defines the human condition. There's nothing wrong with hoping for something better for your children, hoping for a better future.  But when things go against the plan of hope, when a child dies, then that hope can be supplanted with overwhelming grief, blame, hatred, anger and bitterness, and usually followed up with "something must be done to prevent things like this from ever happening again!"  And you will then hear the grieving say, "I want to make sure that no parent should ever suffer what I've suffered ever again. No parent should ever lose a child."  Well, what to say to that?  Nothing. Because it's bad form to tell the grieving parents that parents have been losing children ever since people were making children and this will continue to happen for as long as humans exist, and whilst particularly tragic for each and every individual who loses a child, there is absolutely nothing any of us can do to change what happened, nor realistically prevent the death of other children from ever happening again. We would if we could, and some people actually believe that all deaths are preventable. That's what hope does to us.  We hope, beyond any sense of reason or rationality, that no one, but especially children, will ever die. 

But we're all going to die. Children will die every day. No matter what advances we make in medical technologies and cures, even if we banned everything that had the merest potential for harm, children are going to die. Some way or another. You don't have to like it (who does?) but it doesn't make it any less true. If there is any consolation against that certainty, it would be that most children will reach adulthood.

The BBC reports that at least 60,000 people have died in Syria.  Every single one of those deaths are devastating to someone. Bizarrely, not one mention of children in that article, but many children have been killed indeed.  But should we really be measuring tragedies based on how many years one has lived or the potential one has left to live?  Isn't everyone's life just as important as everyone else's?  Do adults have less of a right to survive than children?  Do women have more rights to survive than men?  How exactly do we value human life?  Which lives are more important?

Here's a dilemma. Let's say you are inside a burning house.  Inside the house are four adults trapped in one room, and one child trapped in a different room, and you are between the two. There's very little time, the fire is raging, and you can either save the four adults and forego rescuing the child, or you can save the child and let the four adults die.  In this example, you cannot save all five people -- it's not a possibility.  You have to make a choice.  What choice do you make?

What if you knew that one of the trapped adults was about to create a cure for cancer or do some other miraculous thing that could save millions of lives? Would that affect your decision?

Now if the child was your offspring, then that would certainly influence your choice, and I can only assume that most parents would try to save their offspring instead of the other adults, cancer cure or no.  But what if your child was already terminally-ill, or had some other severe disability that limited its potential life span?  Would you choose differently?  Perhaps not.

Of course there's another choice of not saving anyone but yourself.  Is there a right choice?   It's a stupid dilemma, really.  Or is it?  If the child isn't yours, then can you honestly say that its life more valuable than 4 adult lives?  And if you chose to save the child over the four adults, how did you justify that choice?  What's so special about the child?  Did you empathise with how its parents would feel? How you would feel if someone left your child to burn? And if not saved, those other four adults have family members who will grieve, too.  What about them?

I certainly hope that no one ever has to face that kind of dilemma, but I suppose such things could happen. 

Back to the Syria thing.  60,000 deaths have been reported.  Hardly anybody pays attention to that, maybe because where you live it doesn't affect you, or maybe because it's difficult to envision the scale of it. There's barely a whimper of outrage outside of Syria in comparison to the worldwide outrage over what happened in Connecticut, USA, where 26 people died, 20 of them children.  Every single one of these deaths in both of these countries are tragic, but why so much emphasis on the American kids and almost none on the Syrian people?  Is it because deaths of men, women and children during a war in a foreign country far away from you are somehow different? Does it only matter if western schoolchildren are unexpectedly murdered as opposed to entire Syrian families killed whilst sleeping in their homes?  Are those schoolchildren's deaths any more or less heinous and deplorable than what's happening in Syria?  Is there really any difference between someone shooting kids at school and kids getting blown up by a tank or artillery shell?

On the one hand, we have the media and politicians clamouring for their governments to send in arms and munitions to support the Syrian rebels, and on the other we have the media and the same politicians clamouring for America to ban guns.  How exactly does that work again? Arm one population in support of a cause which has already seen the deaths of tens of thousands of people and will continue to see many more, disarm another in support of a cause for 20 children and 6 adults senselessly murdered so that you can hope it never happens again?

Part of the issue here is a lack of understanding.  What I mean is that we understand and expect that people will die during a war. As horrible as each Syrian death is, we gloss over it -- it barely fazes most of you.  It's not that we want anyone to die in Syria, but we know it will happen, which means that most individuals can cope with the deaths of thousands of kids and far more adults, especially since it's not happening anywhere near you. But nobody expects schoolchildren to get murdered in classrooms anywhere because it almost never happens.  That makes it enormously difficult if not impossible for people to comprehend. The perception of the event, the awfulness of it, is amplified exponentially by a lack of understanding.  "War is one thing," you might say, "but these were defenceless children with their whole lives ahead of them!"  I suppose the defenceless people who die in a war zone didn't have their whole lives ahead of them, then?  Of course they did, but it's different because you understand the tragedy of war. You cannot fully comprehend an event when it happens without any apparent reason, when you were not prepared for it, in a place you didn't expect for it to happen.  Our brains try to find reasons for the inexplicable, to impose order on chaos, but sometimes this is impossible.

And we further compound the impossible, our lack of comprehension with our subsequent actions because something involved children.  "What kind of monster would kill a child? Something must be done!" Suddenly there is a hysterical mob of frightened people everywhere, angry because they don't understand and cannot cope with it.  And when the media misreports the name of the man who shot up the school and instead gives his brother's name, who had nothing at all to do with it, in a flash there are hundreds of Facebook pages created with the wrong man's name and photo linking him to the crimes, many of them still there, calling him all sorts of terrible names and wishing all sorts of terrible things against him.  A lack of comprehension leads to feelings of helplessness and terror and fear, which makes people lash out irrationally and sometimes do equally terrible things themselves, or make rash decisions, especially when it involves the idols our species worships -- children.

Look, I am not saying that those kids' lives had no value (or that it's OK to kill). Of course they all had value, particularly to their families and friends. I am not saying you shouldn't feel horrified because someone killed them. Of course you should feel that way. I'd be concerned if you didn't.  But we seem to be extraordinarily accepting of some people's deaths over others. We tend to label some deaths as more horrific or tragic, when in reality they are all equally tragic.  Either all lives have equal value, or none have any value. When we carve out exceptions for death based on circumstances, age, race, nationality, gender, religious beliefs, class or anything at all, then I suppose we're saying that some lives are indeed more valued than others, that's it's OK to make decisions based on what happened to one group of people rather than another. It all depends on your perspective, how you choose to view the world.  And this allows people to justify (or ignore!) any act so long as it conforms with their views.

I know that it is our biological imperative to protect children in order to ensure the survival of our species.  Instinctively, we endow special importance to both children and women. This is how most of us view the world and our species' long term survival in it. We are programmed this way. It is not a bad thing; there is no shame in this (unless we choose to abuse it for personal gain). It is who we are. We tend to view women and children as particularly vulnerable creatures, but the truth is we are all equally vulnerable to death, however and whenever it comes.

The problem is when people deliberately exploit your instincts and fears to further any agenda, political or otherwise. To them we are all bent sticks who need to be straightened out.

The trouble with adults is that we let them do it.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Drinking Will Make Your Tits Fall Off

Here we are on the first day of January 2013, and the shitbag prohibitionists who invented Dry January have wasted no time at all in getting their propaganda out in the mainstream press to assure you that if you stop drinking (and smoking) then you will live forever. The Telegraph has a gem of an article a propaganda piece called "Alcohol guidelines 'too high' say doctors."   Ah, just from the title we know it's going to be a doozy.

They have been set too high and fail to take into account new evidence showing that drinking only modest amounts raises the risk of cancer and other diseases.
A Harvard University study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2011, found that women who drank just four small glasses of wine a week - about five units - increased their risk of developing breast cancer by 15 per cent compared to teetotallers. 

OK, for argument's sake, let's say that this risk increase of 15% for women who drink a paltry 5 units per week is an accurate statistic (and let's be honest, I'm pretty sure that this arbitrary five unit limit is reached within a couple of hours on a daily basis, but I digress).  That sounds frightening?   FIFTEEN PERCENT INCREASED RISK!  ZOMG!  Stop drinking now, ladies, or your waps will rot and fall off!  It's the end of the world! Right?


So what does this 15% increased risk of tit cancer mean in real terms?  How concerned should you be, ladies? To get that answer, I visited the web site of CRUK, our favourite evil, prohibitionist, nannying charity.  Here they give the estimated risk figures for women getting breast cancer over the course of their lifetime.  I don't know if it's accurate or adjusted / weighted in any way, but for our purposes it doesn't matter.  We're going to assume that it too is accurate.

To start, here is their table of women's estimated risk for breast cancer:
The first thing we notice is, which CRUK even says on their site, is that your risk increases greatly as you get older.  That's fair, because your risk of getting every kind of cancer increases greatly as you get older.  But anyway, the stats are presented in a way to make it look as scary as possible.  1 in 2000 seems like a pretty high chance and a lot of women are getting breast cancer before 30, doesn't it?  "One in Two-Thousand Women under 30 will DIE from breast cancer!" the papers will claim!

Well, no.  Here's a another way of looking at that figure.  1 in 2000 = 0.05% or five hundredths of a percent (which also looks like this in pure decimal form: 0.0005)  That's rare. In fact, as a statistic, it's considered negligible (although, I readily concede that anyone under 30 who does get breast cancer would argue that it's not that negligible because it happened to them), and your risk is practically non-existent.

So if you have a nearly non-existent risk of 0.05% and you increase that risk by an additional 15% because you're a filthy drinker of alcohol, then what's your new risk of watching your tits fall off before 30?  The answer is still non-existent at 0.0575%.  It didn't even increase a whole hundredth of a percentage point.  The additional risk of 15% is still negligible, statistically-speaking.

Anyway, I've done the maths on the rest of the ages noted in CRUK's table.  Actually, my Excel spreadsheet did them for me, because I'll be honest here, my maths skills are fairly rubbish these days. But I still know how to calculate percentages and write a formula for Excel (maybe), so without further ado:

Looking at the table's Lifetime risk values, the highest actual increase in real terms that any woman who drinks the dirty booze could expect to see is just 1.875%.  And for all women under 60 years of age, your increase in real terms doesn't even reach 1%.  So, ladies, your waps are fine if you keep drinking up to 5 units per week.  (Of course, if you drank 6 units per week, then you'd probably drop dead within a month.)  I should add that even my table of stats must be considered dodgy, too. I just used CRUK's table and calculated from there, and I'm conflating data from different sources, which is a no-no.  It's only meant to be illustrative, not scientific or factual.  Truth be told, what I have just done is par for the course these days in Public Health, so I feel at ease doing so.

Regardless, I hope that clearly illustrates exactly how the media, its flunky-junky medical correspondents, our activist doctor enemies and a host of ill-meaning university departments deceive you on a daily basis in order to promote their prohibitionist agendas. They don't tell you the real truth. They don't tell you what the statistics mean in real terms.  They are in effect lying to you by omission, and that makes them deceitful scumbags from hell. Do not trust any of these people. Ever.

Good Lord! Look at the size of that beer!
Those puppies gon' be jus' fine! Keep drinking!

PS:  I'm sure you all know about Drinkuary, a wonderful riposte to Dry January. Don't you?  Such a shame this isn't happening next month, then we could have had "Febrewary."  Oh, well.