March 24th, 2014

The war on smokers reaches a new level

First we had the hazards of smoking itself. They are real and well-documented, but affect only the smoker, who can sometimes be persuaded to quit after learning about the dangers but sometimes chooses to continue the habit.

Then there were the dangers to the non-smoking public of smoking, the so-called second-hand smoke problem. I wrote about it here, and my position is that although I can’t stand being around cigarette smoke and am in favor of banning it in enclosed public places, I remain unconvinced of the long-term negative health effects for anyone other than people with asthma or other lung diseases.

Now we have third-hand smoke, which is the residue that clings to clothing and curtains and carpets and cars and other surroundings of the smoker. I hate it with a passion—my hair is very porous, and when I’m around smokers I can smell it in my hair until I wash it, and on my clothes likewise. It’s a sour, stale, and generally disgusting odor that clings to apartments, motel rooms, and homes long after the smoker has left the premises. But the evidence for long-term problems due to third-hand smoke is even weaker than that for second-hand smoke (which is already weak enough). In addition, it seems to me that the campaign against third-hand smoke is potentially far more pernicious than the one against second-hand smoke, because the aim of the one against third-hand smoke must be to ban smoking altogether, and/or make the practice legally actionable, and/or scare people half to death about it, even if it’s practiced in the privacy of one’s home or out in the open air.

To wit:

…[A] mother who doesn’t smoke in front of her kids, smokes outside, then comes inside and holds the baby is exposing that child to thirdhand smoke. The new compounds are difficult to clean up, have a long life of their own, and many may be carcinogenic.

…”Thirdhand smoke is harmful to our genetic material,” Bo Hang, a scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, said at a news conference this week…”And the contamination becomes more toxic with time.”…

“In homes where we know no smoker has lived for 20 years, we’ve still found evidence of these compounds in dust, in wallboard,” says Neal Benowitz, chief of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology at the University of California, San Francisco. Benowitz leads the California Consortium on Thirdhand Smoke, started in 2010…

Those who move into houses or apartments formerly owned by smokers might be exposed as well. And thirdhand smoke is difficult to eliminate. “So far, we have not found an exposed environment where you cannot measure it any more,” says Georg Matt, chair of the Department of Psychology at San Diego State University in California. “It’s virtually impossible to remove this stuff unless you remove the flooring and drywall.”

Buried in the article, however, is this:

Science hasn’t yet quantified the amount of exposure that poses a health risk, and hasn’t determined with certainty what those health risks might be.

In other words: we know almost nothing.

We’ve come along way, baby, haven’t we? From a time when the very real and very negative health effects of cigarettes on smokers themselves were covered up, to a time when the smallest undocumented/imagined effects on everyone else are hyped to the skies. Once smokers were trying to kill only themselves; in the future we’re supposed to think they’re out to kill us all.

35 Responses to “The war on smokers reaches a new level”

  1. LondonTrader Says:

    I’m worried about fourth hand exposure – I’m certain I interact with people who live in a house where a smoker once lived.

  2. Lizzy Says:

    “Indoor cigarette smoke combines with air pollutants to form compounds that might cause cancer….”

    Imagine if we banned everything that we’ve been told “might cause cancer” over the last half-century?

    The anti-smoking crowd is grasping at straws.

  3. T Says:

    Third-Hand Smoke. the New global warming>

  4. Capn Rusty Says:

    And therein lies the danger of turning over our healthcare to the government. The government can decide to ban whatever it wants to ban by claiming that it is doing so to lower the costs to the taxpayers. But governments make decisions based upon political considerations, not science; e.g., global warming. Thus, the government will ban – for “health” reasons – whatever the majority wants banned, for whatever reason. Or, as we’ve been seeing lately, the President will ban whatever he wants to ban by executive order.

  5. OsoPardo Says:

    I don’t smoke and I don’t care to be around smokers or breath the second hand or third hand smoke. However, note that this argument is only used for tobacco smoke, pot is OK…

    As a resident of a resort area in Colorado my nose is being assaulted by all the “Pot Tourists” coming to smoke up. Our condo complex is literally “going up in smoke” as some of the other owners rent the condos when not living there.

    I’ve always wondered why there’s a war on tobacco smoke but not pot smoke. And, is there any way I can use the anti-smoking regulations designed for tobacco against pot smokers? Any ideas would be appreciated.

  6. expat Says:

    My father once had a fire in his house. None of the furniture was destroyed, but all sorts of things like linoleum and plastics in the kitchen burned. There was a major professional cleanup afterwards, and you couldn’t even smell smoke in the sofa. I wonder whether in the future and house that has a fire will have to be torn down and the remains buried in a special depot in Nevada.

  7. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    In any socialistic system, ALL behavior, speech and thought MUST eventually be classified as either forbidden or mandatory. All behavior defined as mandatory will invariably contribute to the STATES coffers while simultaneously supporting the maintenance of and/or an increase in the STATES power.

  8. T Says:

    “. . . the government will ban – for “health” reasons – whatever the majority wants banned . . . .” [Capn Rusty @ 2:41 pm]

    Actually Capn it’s worse than that because the govt bans what it damn well wants to regardless of the majority will. Those who Ban are a Congress and Executive branch (the .000163%) which only intermittently listens to the majority — incandescent light bulbs, Keystone Pipeline anyone?

  9. Mr. Frank Says:

    They are from the government and they want to help you. It is their religion and you must be saved. You give meaning to their life.

  10. rickl Says:

    And now there are also efforts underway to tax e-cigarettes at the same rate as regular ones.

    E-cigs emit no smoke, odor, or ash. While nobody claims they are harmless to the smoker, they certainly don’t carry the same risks that smoking does.

    This has nothing whatsoever to do with “public health”. It is about controlling behavior, and maximizing tax revenue.

  11. rickl Says:

    I forgot to say that if the government were actually concerned with public health, they would be offering incentives to get smokers to switch to e-cigs.

  12. Ann Says:

    Beyond the government intrusion, I’ve actually been rather surprised over the years by how eagerly individual people have become the enforcers as far as the smoking taboo is concerned.

    It’s also interesting that the “elites” pushing the taboo haven’t been swayed by European attitudes toward smoking, which as far as I can tell from their TV shows and movies is a much more live-and-let-live approach.

  13. southpaw Says:

    Ann-
    Just got back from a vacation in Paris and you are correct. At least in some EU countries- scandanavia is a lot more like us; France and Italy and Switzerland dont seem concerned with lung cancer or non-smoker’s feelings at all. If I were paying those kind of taxes I might take it up too.

  14. Tonawanda Says:

    These are all proxy wars where there is a starting point no one disputes – - smoking is bad, for example – - and we eventually wind up yet again with the empowerment of arbitrary government action, the opposition to which is characterized in light of the original starting point: you are in favor of tobacco smoking.

    If you are not “for” the children you are against the children.

  15. NJcon Says:

    Here’s how the tobacco industry can solve all of their problems – mass market a pack of marijuana “cigarettes” in the “legal” states….. cognitive dissonance of the Leftist abounds!

  16. harleyrider1778 Says:

    They are real and well-documented, but affect only the smoker, who can sometimes be persuaded to quit after learning about the dangers but sometimes chooses to continue the habit.

    Really they cant even prove direct smoking causes anything in anyone didn’t you know that!

    JOINT STATEMENT ON THE RE-ASSESSMENT OF THE TOXICOLOGICAL TESTING OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS”
    7 October, the COT meeting on 26 October and the COC meeting on 18
    November 2004.

    http://cot.food.gov.uk/pdfs/cotstatementtobacco0409

    “5. The Committees commented that tobacco smoke was a highly complex chemical mixture and that the causative agents for smoke induced diseases (such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, effects on reproduction and on offspring) was unknown. The mechanisms by which tobacco induced adverse effects were not established. The best information related to tobacco smoke – induced lung cancer, but even in this instance a detailed mechanism was not available. The Committees therefore agreed that on the basis of current knowledge it would be very difficult to identify a toxicological testing strategy or a biomonitoring approach for use in volunteer studies with smokers where the end-points determined or biomarkers measured were predictive of the overall burden of tobacco-induced adverse disease.”

    In other words … our first hand smoke theory is so lame we can’t even design a bogus lab experiment to prove it. In fact … we don’t even know how tobacco does all of the magical things we claim it does.

    The greatest threat to the second hand theory is the weakness of the first hand theory.

  17. harleyrider1778 Says:

    This pretty well destroys the Myth of second hand smoke:

    http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/28/16741714-lungs-from-pack-a-day-smokers-safe-for-transplant-study-finds?lite

    Lungs from pack-a-day smokers safe for transplant, study finds.

    By JoNel Aleccia, Staff Writer, NBC News.

    Using lung transplants from heavy smokers may sound like a cruel joke, but a new study finds that organs taken from people who puffed a pack a day for more than 20 years are likely safe.

    What’s more, the analysis of lung transplant data from the U.S. between 2005 and 2011 confirms what transplant experts say they already know: For some patients on a crowded organ waiting list, lungs from smokers are better than none.

    “I think people are grateful just to have a shot at getting lungs,” said Dr. Sharven Taghavi, a cardiovascular surgical resident at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, who led the new study………………………

    Ive done the math here and this is how it works out with second ahnd smoke and people inhaling it!

    The 16 cities study conducted by the U.S. DEPT OF ENERGY and later by Oakridge National laboratories discovered:

    Cigarette smoke, bartenders annual exposure to smoke rises, at most, to the equivalent of 6 cigarettes/year.

    146,000 CIGARETTES SMOKED IN 20 YEARS AT 1 PACK A DAY.

    A bartender would have to work in second hand smoke for 2433 years to get an equivalent dose.

    Then the average non-smoker in a ventilated restaurant for an hour would have to go back and forth each day for 119,000 years to get an equivalent 20 years of smoking a pack a day! Pretty well impossible ehh!

  18. harleyrider1778 Says:

    How they created anti-smoking JUNK SCIENCE

    BTW your body expels toxins consistently even the ones so small they cant be measured like in SHS…….You’ve bought the BS propaganda and haven’t woken up yet to reality.

    Everything you ever heard is a lie about shs.

    What the charletons did was take normal body reactions to any stimuli in this case smoke any smoke doesn’t matter and you will get body changes adapted to the environment you are in.

    How they created anti-smoking science
    They took these NORMAL body changes physiological changes and suddenly deemed them disease causing………It was a fabricated lie as the body within minutes to hours reverts back to normal……….Going into the cold,heat,excersice matters not you get these changes even eating a hearty meal causes the same effects. Its also the same thing they did with direct smoking. They couldn’t get past the chemistry happening during smoking and the bodily changes that happened when you smoke. Which physiological changes that correct themselves naturally yet again and cause no harm at all. Yet here again they claimed disease causing with nothing to back them up but their junk epidemiology then creating a new word CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP! Its all been smoke and mirrors.

    If smoking did cause LC then everyone should get it right,yet 94% of life long smokers don’t get it. Which leaves a whole avenue of actual genetic breakdown due to aging as the CULPRIT!

    Where are the Invasive cancers found for bronchial and lung in the 78-85 year old bracket at a whopping 500 per 100,000 of the population. AGE IS THE DISEASE

    Then they pull a sweet lil play and use age adjustment formulas to take the older folks with all the cancer and move them down into the younger age groups to inflate the outcomes!

    That my friend is where 50 years of propaganda came from!

  19. harleyrider1778 Says:

    The Chemical composition of tobacco smoke

    About 90% of secondary smoke is composed of water vapor and ordinary air with a minor amount of carbon dioxide. The volume of water vapor of second hand smoke becomes even larger as it quickly disperses into the air,depending upon the humidity factors within a set location indoors or outdoors. Exhaled smoke from a smoker will provide 20% more water vapor to the smoke as it exists the smokers mouth.

    4 % is carbon monoxide.

    6 % is those supposed 4,000 chemicals to be found in tobacco smoke. Unfortunatley for the smoke free advocates these supposed chemicals are more theorized than actually found.What is found is so small to even call them threats to humans is beyond belief.Nanograms,picograms and femptograms……
    (1989 Report of the Surgeon General p. 80).

  20. harleyrider1778 Says:

    BS Alert: The ‘third-hand smoke’ hoax

    http://www.examiner.com/public-policy-in-louisville/bs-alert-the-third-hand-smoke-hoax

    The thirdhand smoke scam

    http://velvetgloveironfist.blogspot.com/2010/02/thirdhand-smoke-scam.html

    Heart attacks Frauds and Myths..

    http://www.spiked-on
    line.com/index.php/s
    ite/article/7451/

    TobaccoControl Tactics

    TCTactics aims to provide up-to-date information on the Tobacco Control Industry, its allies and those promoting the extremist anti-tobacco agenda that no longer targets just tobacco but ordinary adult consumers who use it.
    The website explores how this industry – with support from the pharmaceutical nicotine producers and government tax funds – influences and often distorts public health debates, using a whole raft of lobbying, public relations tactics and junk science.

    http://tctactics.org/index.php/Main_Page

  21. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Scientific Evidence Shows Secondhand Smoke Is No Danger

    Written By: Jerome Arnett, Jr., M.D.
    Published In: Environment & Climate News
    Publication Date: July 1, 2008
    Publisher:

    http://www.heartland
    .org/policybot/resul
    ts/23399/Scientific_
    Evidence_Sho…

    myth-of-second-hand-
    smoke

    http://yourdoctorsor
    ders.com/2009/01/the
    -myth-of-second-hand
    -smoke

  22. Ymarsakar Says:

    The slaves think they are free. Democracy is one of the best tools for a totalitarian society or a tyranny.

  23. harleyrider1778 Says:

    We know Plenty and here it is in all its GLORY:

    Buried in the article, however, is this:

    Science hasn’t yet quantified the amount of exposure that poses a health risk, and hasn’t determined with certainty what those health risks might be.

    In other words: we know almost nothing.

    Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: Third Edition

    nap.edu

    This sorta says it all

    These limits generally are based on assessments of health risk and calculations of concentrations that are associated with what the regulators believe to be negligibly small risks. The calculations are made after first identifying the total dose of a chemical that is safe (poses a negligible risk) and then determining the concentration of that chemical in the medium of concern that should not be exceeded if exposed individuals (typically those at the high end of media contact) are not to incur a dose greater than the safe one.

    So OSHA standards are what is the guideline for what is acceptable ”SAFE LEVELS”

    OSHA SAFE LEVELS

    All this is in a small sealed room 9×20 and must occur in ONE HOUR.

    For Benzo[a]pyrene, 222,000 cigarettes.

    “For Acetone, 118,000 cigarettes.

    “Toluene would require 50,000 packs of simultaneously smoldering cigarettes.

    Acetaldehyde or Hydrazine, more than 14,000 smokers would need to light up.

    “For Hydroquinone, “only” 1250 cigarettes.

    For arsenic 2 million 500,000 smokers at one time.

    The same number of cigarettes required for the other so called chemicals in shs/ets will have the same outcomes.

    So, OSHA finally makes a statement on shs/ets :

    Field studies of environmental tobacco smoke indicate that under normal conditions, the components in tobacco smoke are diluted below existing Permissible Exposure Levels (PELS.) as referenced in the Air Contaminant Standard (29 CFR 1910.1000)…It would be very rare to find a workplace with so much smoking that any individual PEL would be exceeded.” -Letter From Greg Watchman, Acting Sec’y, OSHA.

    Why are their any smoking bans at all they have absolutely no validity to the courts or to science!

  24. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Thirdhand smoke fever – another example of prejudice and propaganda
    Friday February 12, 2010
    Chris Snowdon, author of Velvet Glove Iron Fist: A History of Anti-Smoking, explains the “science” behind the latest anti-smoking scaremongering

    It was the kind of laboratory experiment that two chemists might conduct to kill time on a rainy Friday afternoon. It resulted in global media coverage. The Daily Telegraph was only marginally more excitable than the many other newspapers which reported it:

    “Third-hand smoke as dangerous as cigarette fumes … Third-hand smoke found in hair and on clothes can be as dangerous as the fumes billowing directly from a cigarette – particularly to babies and children.”

    This came just over a year after the concept of ‘thirdhand smoke’ – toxins lingering in hair and furniture for months after a cigarette is extinguished – was first launched into the public consciousness. On that occasion, a telephone survey asking whether parents would be less likely to smoke if they believed that dormant carcinogens in the upholstery could attack their children was reported as if such a phenomenon had already been proven. In fact it had not even been studied, but this speculative survey was enough to prompt think-of-the-children hyperbole from the Daily Mail under the headline: ‘Even smoking outside can harm your baby’.

    Insight

    Having established that a section of the public was open to the idea of a new health scare, the first laboratory experiment was commissioned (the order of events providing an insight into how these things work). Conducted in the respected Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, this experiment involved putting nitrous acid in contact with nicotine to see if the reaction created tobacco-specific nitrosamines (TSNAs). Specifically, they were looking for NNA and two known carcinogens – NNN and NNK.

    The nicotine had been absorbed into a surface, hence ‘thirdhand smoke’, although not the clothes and hair mentioned in subsequent news reports. Instead, the glove compartment of a truck driven by a heavy smoker was selected; the smallest and most confined workplace imaginable. A sample was taken by wiping the glove box and the nitrous acid was then sprayed on, with underwhelming results. No NNN was found and both NNA and NNK were found at barely detectable levels, both under 1 ngcm-2. This was the closest the researchers came to experimenting in real-life conditions.

    Unsurprisingly

    In a further experiment, the team collected a sample from the truck using cellulose substrates which absorbed twice as much nicotine and, unsurprisingly, yielded twice as many TSNAs, albeit still well below 5 ngcm-2. They then exposed some cellulose substrates to secondhand smoke, but the levels of TSNA produced were, as the authors reported, “negligible”. Finally, they gave up using cigarettes altogether and simply impregnated the cellulose substrates with pure nicotine vapour. This produced nicotine concentrations that were 15 times higher than were found in the truck and when the nitrous acid was applied, the researchers were rewarded with a more newsworthy finding. Much higher levels of NNA were recorded (over 20 ngcm-2) and NNK also rose, albeit to a fairly feeble 3 ngcm-2.

    Taken as a whole, this was remarkably flimsy evidence upon which to hang the claim that stale tobacco in clothes and furniture was “as dangerous as cigarette fumes”. Having come up empty-handed using a real-life smoking environment, the researchers had resorted to using nicotine vapour on cellulose substrates in an experiment that could not be replicated outside of a laboratory. Even then, they had not found NNN in any of the experiments and the only TSNA to appear in any quantity was NNA. This posed a problem because NNA doesn’t actually cause cancer, as the authors admit:

    “NNA carcinogenicity has not been reported.”

    This left them with one carcinogen that was barely present, one carcinogen that wasn’t present at all and one TSNA that was present but wasn’t a carcinogen. But even these inauspicious findings only hinted at a more fundamental problem with the study.

    React

    The paper had shown that nitrous acid molecules will react with absorbed nicotine (just as it would with free-floating nicotine) to produce TSNAs. The more nitrous acid in the room, and the more nicotine on the surface, the more the reaction will occur. But for the experiment to have any meaning beyond the walls of a Berkeley science lab, it needed to have some relevance to everyday life. People do not tend to spray their homes with nitrous acid. Was there, indeed, any reason for using nitrous acid at all, beyond the probability that it would create some nasty sounding chemicals?

    Nitrous acid concentrations in the average Californian home are 4.6 parts per billion. The Berkeley researchers used concentrations of 65 parts per billion. They described this dose as “high but reasonable”, a baffling description since it is 14 times higher than would be found in a normal domestic setting. Since they were already using 15 times more nicotine than would be found in a smoky truck cabin, any relevance the experiment had to real life had long-since vanished. The concentrations were fantastically high when compared to the average home.

    Exposed

    In any case, if your house or car is full of nitrous acid then you have more to worry about than it reacting with absorbed nicotine. As the authors point out in the study:

    “The main indoor sources of HONO [nitrous acid] are direct emissions from unvented combustion appliances, smoking, and surface conversion of NO2 and NO.”

    NO2 and NO themselves are products of unregulated combustion. So you’ll only be exposed to high concentrations of nitrous acid if you’re exposed to the products of combustion – ie you’re a peasant in a smoke-filled hut, you live in a very polluted city like New Delhi, or you are in fact smoking a cigarette. The combustion products themselves are carcinogens, and are present in much higher concentrations than the TSNAs. Your problem would be the nitrous acid, not the chair you smoked a cigar in last Christmas.

    Chris Snowdon is author of Velvet Glove Iron Fist: A History of Anti-Smoking

    http://www.thefreesociety.org/Issues/Smoking/thirdhand-smoke-fever-a-further-example-of-prejudice-and-propaganda

  25. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Michael J. McFadden 4 years ago

    If you read the study itself you’ll find they “assumed” a “high but reasonable” level of SIXTY for their HONO value. But if you follow the references they give you’ll find that the average HONO level in houses is FOUR. . . . .

    Do you understand what that means? It means they got their “scary numbers” by exaggerating normal conditions by a whopping 1,500%. . . . .

    Don’t believe the nonsense you read in antismoking press-release-based news stories. Do some research yourself and you might be surprised at what you find. Google the three words:

    McFadden Kabat KGB

    and read my AfterComments to Dr. Kabat’s CU Press article to see last year’s version of this nonsense. They’re playing with social engineering, abusing our love for our children in a cold and calculated way to push smokers step-by-step to quit whether they want to or not. Visit TheTruthIsALie.com to see more of such lies exposed. . . . .

    Michael J. McFadden,
    Author of “Dissecting Antismokers’ Brains”

  26. blert Says:

    The new generation is working at cross purposes.

    Why legalize 420 — aka prop 215 goods — when even a carbonizing flame is a crime against nature?

  27. Ray Says:

    As I have stated before, the cause of cancer is unknown. In 1971 the National Cancer Institute was tasked to find the cause of cancer and they have not succeeded. Even better, I have the surgeon general 1967 report on smoking and health which shows moderate smokers have lower mortality and disease rates than nonsmokers. That report is not on the surgeon general website because it has been disappeared.
    Go here, next to last paragraph. http://training.seer.cancer.gov/disease/war/

  28. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Manufacturing the science to meet the agenda, in black on white. Does anyone still have doubts?

    ”Bal laughs when asked about the role of scientific evidence in guiding policy decisions. “There was no science on how to do a community intervention on something of this global dimension,” he says. “Where there is no science, you have to go and be venturesome—you can’t use the paucity of science as an excuse to do nothing. We created the science, we did the interventions and then all the scientists came in behind us and analyzed what we did.”

    Read under the title :
    Tobacco Control: The Long War—When the Evidence Has to Be Created

    http://www.milbank.org/uploads/documents/0712populationhealth/0712populationhealth.html#tabacco

  29. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Confidence trick

    It is essential that campaigners create the impression of inevitable success. Campaigning of this kind is literally a confidence trick: the appearance of confidence both creates confidence and demoralises the opposition.”
    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2006/jul/19/health.healthandwellbeing

  30. chuck Says:

    But after the smokers are gone, who will pay for the children?

  31. Beverly Says:

    Rush Limbaugh said something funny today: People have said to him that they allow their teenage children to have sex in the house because “You Can’t Stop Them! They’re gonna do it!” And one woman said to Rush, “At least I know [the bedroom in my house] is clean.”

    So Rush said, “Why don’t you put a pack of cigarettes on the nightstand for them to enjoy afterwards?”

    She was appalled — “Oh, no, I can’t let them SMOKE!”

    Yeppers, that’s the type of birdbrain we have as parents these days. Pathetic twits.

  32. kit Says:

    Whatever the arguments on either side, smoking is a dirty habit. It dirties lungs, the air, the breath, skin, hair, teeth, clothing upholstery, walls and ceilings.
    When they cleaned Grand Central Station in NY and removed the grime to reveal its former beauty, they left a black patch on the ceiling to show what filth, nicotine had caused. When I have been subjected to cigarette smoke, I start to have trouble breathing and my esophagus feels like it has been charred.
    I dont want my lungs to breathe that filthy air. A smoker’s rights end where my lungs begin.
    Therefore, I am grateful for the ban on smoking in public places.
    I have seen samples of the lungs of dead smokers and it is nothing to be proud of.
    Smoking is a very selfish addiction and smokers should confine their dirty habit to the privacy of their own homes. Lung tissue is very delicate and since it is not my disgusting habit, why should I be subjected to even smaller amounts of it.

    Unfortunately, you cannot legislate consideration. Smokers want to smoke regardless of how others feel about it. So even in a free land, we need laws to ban smoking so that non smokers are free to breathe freely.

  33. Don Carlos Says:

    “Science hasn’t yet quantified the amount of exposure that poses a health risk.”
    A health risk of what magnitude constitutes a real risk? One chance in a million? One in a thousand? One in ten?
    “Science” doesn’t do anything, either. It is people, mere mortals who often get it wrong, who do the science.

    We are awash in sloppy thinking.

  34. Spunky Says:

    I grew up in a smoking household. When I started working for the federal gov’t in Washington, DC in the early-1970′s, it was standard for all conference rooms (usually enclosed, no windows) to have several ashtrays on the conference table. At the start of a meeting, half the attendees would light up. The presumption was in favor of smoking – polite requests not to smoke were ignored and often ridiculed. Over a several-year period, non-smokers got guts and shamed the smokers out before smoking was forbidden. I never saw violence during this transition, but it came close a few times when smokers wouldn’t back down.

    I agree that the scientific evidence against second (and third)-hand smoke is weak. But I wouldn’t go back to the old days for anything. Big improvement in the quality of life generally. It’s a shame the powerful addiction forced government action. The article you cite feels like some scientists are trying to catch the gov’t funding gravy train with this third-hand smoke business.

    My Dad tells of when the gov’t got rid of the cuspidors (spitoons) in gov’t offices in the 1950′s. A tale for another time….

  35. harleyrider1778 Says:

    Don Carlos Says:

    March 25th, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    “Science hasn’t yet quantified the amount of exposure that poses a health risk.”
    A health risk of what magnitude constitutes a real risk? One chance in a million? One in a thousand? One in ten?
    “Science” doesn’t do anything, either. It is people, mere mortals who often get it wrong, who do the science.

    We are awash in sloppy thinking.

    These limits generally are based on assessments of health risk and calculations of concentrations that are associated with what the regulators believe to be negligibly small risks. The calculations are made after first identifying the total dose of a chemical that is safe (poses a negligible risk) and then determining the concentration of that chemical in the medium of concern that should not be exceeded if exposed individuals (typically those at the high end of media contact) are not to incur a dose greater than the safe one.

    So OSHA standards are what is the guideline for what is acceptable ”SAFE LEVELS”

    OSHA SAFE LEVELS

    All this is in a small sealed room 9×20 and must occur in ONE HOUR.

    For Benzo[a]pyrene, 222,000 cigarettes.

    “For Acetone, 118,000 cigarettes.

    “Toluene would require 50,000 packs of simultaneously smoldering cigarettes.

    Acetaldehyde or Hydrazine, more than 14,000 smokers would need to light up.

    “For Hydroquinone, “only” 1250 cigarettes.

    For arsenic 2 million 500,000 smokers at one time.

    The same number of cigarettes required for the other so called chemicals in shs/ets will have the same outcomes.

    So, OSHA finally makes a statement on shs/ets :

    Field studies of environmental tobacco smoke indicate that under normal conditions, the components in tobacco smoke are diluted below existing Permissible Exposure Levels (PELS.) as referenced in the Air Contaminant Standard (29 CFR 1910.1000)…It would be very rare to find a workplace with so much smoking that any individual PEL would be exceeded.” -Letter From Greg Watchman, Acting Sec’y, OSHA.

    Why are their any smoking bans at all they have absolutely no validity to the courts or to science!

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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