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News Flash From Woo-Woo Land PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

smokenotAt tinyurl.com/7f73qe you'll see the startling statement that 57 thousand people stopped smoking after seeing Uri on TV in Germany! Wow! And, I mean, wow! Because how they determined that figure - that alone - is just incredible! Did all those folks write in, or telephone, e-mail, or send ESP signals? And if they didn't wait a couple of months, how could they possibly know whether they'd really quit? Did they take up nail-biting, crying uncontrollably, stammering, making contributions to Nigerian scammers, or heavy face-twitching, to replace the nicotine?  Inquiring minds want to know... This shows, more clearly than I ever could, the population to which Geller directs his increasingly vapid nonsense: the terminally naïve, the juvenile, and the ignorant, are his targets. And we all know that there are ample folks out there to fill up those ranks, at any given moment... But then, I've always thought that smokers are pretty dense, anyway. They actually choose to take up a habit that's dirty, deadly dangerous, objectionable, antisocial, and provably stupid, so that they can get addicted and sick.  And die.

Charming...

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written by Chris Hughes, January 14, 2009
James -- when I started smoking it was the done, the acceptable thing to do. Eventually, thirty-three years ago, I kicked the stupid habit.
Then two years ago -- lung cancer! Bit of a bummer, but surgery seems to have dealt with it. I agree that anyone who starts smoking in the knowledge that it is a killer is probably being dense -- but we really didn't know back in the forties and fifties.
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written by jensfiederer, January 14, 2009
They take surveys about smoking all the time. Of course, the week before fiftyNINE thousand people quit, so it's not really that impressive (actually, it was 58998, but one of my friends got triple-counted because he actually quit THREE times!).
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written by elitecoder, January 14, 2009
I think it was Mark Twain who said "It's easy to quit smoking. I've done it dozens of times.'
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written by cwniles, January 14, 2009
*Pictures James Randi standing on front lawn, clad only in a distressed bathrobe and black socks with garters, fist pumping furiously* Damn you kids! Get outta my yard!

I love how he provides no information on this claim other than simply stating 57 thousand people stopped smoking after seeing Uri on TV.

By the way, what it going on with all that insane 11.11 garbage he is spewing? I though he was just a scam artist but judging by this, he is straight certifiable. http://site.uri-geller.com/en/...d_to_11_11

couple of excerpts

The 11.11 is the bridge to our vitality and oneness. It is our pathway into the positive unknown and beyond.

11:11 is the pre-encoded trigger and the key to the mysteries of the universe and beyond.

blah, blah, blah...




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Smoker and Semi-Proud., Lowly rated comment [Show]
And more., Lowly rated comment [Show]
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written by yarro, January 14, 2009
Ha, it's Uri time again. The next Uri Geller season 2.
Third rate magicians using props that everybody can buy on the Internet for $ 10.00 or less.
Magician's Choice (without the ring swap!!, how lame is that?!), see-thru blindfolds etc.
Fred Kaps would turn in his grave if he saw this.

Anyway to stay on topic. It's just one of the hypes that always surround mr Geller.
Nothing new in that department. Only difference this time: people can phone in (premium lines of course) and e-mail directly to the show, even upload videos of growing seeds, watches that suddenly start again, dancing tables, spoons falling of TV's etc..
I guess that's where they got the numbers.
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written by Rogue Medic, January 14, 2009
Tristan Noel,

Your defenses of your decision to smoke make no sense.

I have not looked at the research on smoking, but I believe that it is very thorough. Second hand smoke, not so much. But one of the big lifestyle studies was the Framingham study. IIRC, that showed that smoking significantly increased the risks of heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, death, and probably some other things.

Quitting smoking is regularly cited as being the most important thing you can do to improve your health. I have no reason to doubt this.

"In Germany, they came first for the Communists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist;
And then they came for the trade unionists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist;
And then they came for the Jews, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew;
And then . . . they came for me . . . And by that time there was no one left to speak up."


What does that have to do with deciding to smoke. Deciding to smoke is one thing. Taking the ability to smoke away from smokers is an entirely different thing.

I do not believe in outlawing smoking, but I do not smoke. And I do not intend to start.

I do not believe in outlawing drugs (the ones that are already illegal), but I do use them. And I do not intend to start.

I do not believe in outlawing guns, but I do not own any guns. And I do not intend to start.

I do not believe in outlawing homosexuality, but I am heterosexual. And I do not intend to switch.

I do not believe in outlawing speech. Well, on that one, I may make up for all of the others. And I do not intend to stop. ;-)

Defending a right and participating in that activity are not related. Being skeptical is supposed to be about being objective. Your approach appears to lack objectivity.
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Tristan Noel, you are an idiot.
written by BillyJoe, January 14, 2009
Yes, that's what I said.

If you want reasons, here are some:

- the ill-effects of vitamin supplements are irrelevant to the question of the ill-effects of cigarette smoke

- the fact that conservative christian groups support a ban on cigarette smoking is irrelevant to the question about whether the government should advertise against smoking.

- although you might not like it, the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer are very difficult to refute.

- cigarette smoking has been linked to more than just lung cancer: chronic bronchitis, emphysema, aggravation of asthma, heart disease

- the case of a single smoker living to 100 (125?)is not evidence against the harmfull effects of smoking generally.

- people who smoke do harm those who don't smoke. There is reasonably good evidence to link "sidestream" smoking to aggravation of asthma, for example.


But, hold on....3 cigarettes a day!
Oh, you're a joker as well.

BJ
Oh, you're a joker as well
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written by nelson650, January 14, 2009
A friend of mine wanted to quit smoking, while we were talking I pointed out to him that right now, at this moment, he was not smoking. All he had to do was keep doing the same thing he was doing now. Besides, there are two ways to quit, one of them is "quit".
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written by Diverted Chrome, January 14, 2009
@Tristan Noel
"The only things I've seen about smoking seem to reference a fraudulent study from the early '90s."
Wishful thinking. Considering it's one of the most researched health issues, you haven't looked very hard. I'd say you haven't Googled or read any media for 25 years. It's well established that smoking sharply decreases lifespan, causes immune system dysfunction and costs billions a year in health costs. And that's just tobacco; most studies do NOT account for the fact that the majority of a cigarette by weight is chemical additives of which none are approved for human consumption via burning/inhalation: glue, dye, perfume, flame promoters, smoke shapers, etc. (unless you're smoking, say, American Spirit). I'll bet many of these you wouldn't want in your food, yet you introduce them directly into your bloodstream via your lungs:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_additives_in_cigarettes

"It's something that calms me"
Duh. Nicotine is a drug that people take for emotional reasons. When you have a chemical addiction, cessation of the chemical causes stress, reintroduction of the chemical brings an intense calming. It's the method of delivery and the dozens of toxic compounds introduced alongside the nicotine that are problematic.

"I smoke maybe 3 smokes a day, so I drop the habit whenever necessary".
Aren't those two opposites? Or are you saying you quit 3 times a day?

"Some people smoke three packs a day, and live in New Jersey, and drink battery acid, and live to be 125ish."
If you look into addictive behavior, you'll learn it's standard behavior for the addict to cling to the one survivor in a group and ignore the other 9,999 whose health were destroyed. The opiate addict likes to point out William Burroughs living with heroin into old age while ignoring the more obvious examples. Psychologically it's a way of hoping you're going to be the 1 in 10,000 that has no ill effects. It's also very poor maths skills.

"Anti-smoking ads are put out there by controlling christian conservative groups"
The surgeon general??

"Just because you don't agree with a right, does not mean you should not defend it."
You're conflating this actual right to consume this product with health education? We're not going to take away your right to destroy you're own health. But we are going to tax the hell out of it.

I care about your health and I well know that, as the most addictive substance known, quitting is NOT easy. But for FSM's sake at least be honest with yourself in the face of facts.
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written by rhebets, January 14, 2009
Well I myself am a smoker. You may be a drinker. Regardless, it is our choice to participate in either of these activities.
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written by badger3k, January 14, 2009
I figured it was either that 57,000 people watched Uri, couldn't believe that someone could be that stupid, figured it was something in the cigarettes and stopped cold turkey. That, or else he has 57,000 new fans as the stopped Thinking - the reference to smoke was their neurons overloading and burning out.
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The right to chose your death ends where the life of others begins.
written by advancedGIR, January 14, 2009
rhebets, I don't care if you want to ruin your health (well I do mind because I live in a country where self-inflicted health issues are covered by social security), but I see smoking in public as similar to driving when drunk. Although I'm non-violent, I'm almost convinced deadly force could be legitimate (on last resort, of course) in those cases to protect innocent bystanders.
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written by Roo, January 14, 2009
What happened in the programme? Did Geller miraculously bend the ciggies, using only patently obvious sleight of hand?

(I'm not getting into the smoking debate - (the smoking gun?!smilies/wink.gif) - but people should have free choice; maybe not indoors, where passive consumption could be an issue, but outside it should be down to the individual. Smoking, drinking, whatever: either make it COMPLETELY illegal everywhere or shut up about it. Smoking will never be totally outlawed anyway - the government needs those taxes!).
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written by cwniles, January 15, 2009
The American Cancer Society has a very informative page on smoking that lists approximately fifty references.

http://www.cancer.org/docroot/PED/content/PED_10_2x_Questions_About_Smoking_Tobacco_and_Health.asp

I don't feel the need to disparage anyone or do anything but provide this source of relevant information on the subject of smoking but I do think the comparison someone made equating smoking in public to drunk driving is way over the top.
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written by StarTrekLivz, January 15, 2009
They may have "stopped" smoking, but did they STAY "stopped?"

As I believe Mark Twain said, "It's easy to give up smoking. I've done it dozens of times."
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I almost bought it
written by danieljref, January 15, 2009
Oh, come on. He almost got it.

If Uri Geller had made a movie, let's say, "An Inconvenient Uri" and told that the facts are in and that there is a psychic consensus that 57 thousand people had stop smoking, who would doubt him?

And I don't know about you, but after seing this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNwgoDkAQRE), I stopped smoking immediately. I can't explain what happened, but there must be some psychic phenomenom that makes you stop smoking while you are laughing your *** off. The trick was so good that I'm also speaking dutch.
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On smoking rights and other stuff
written by danieljref, January 15, 2009
It is ridiculous to see people almost on the verge of endorsing beating up smokers just because they smoke. In a very brief manner, if it is being said that if smokers should be beaten or prohibited from smoking just because of some media scare about second hand smoking, then it follows that drivers, just because they drive, should be beaten or prohibited from driving, just because there are traffic accidents. Sick stuff. The arguments I've seen are simply ridiculous, it just amounts to "I question things. I read papers. So I know what is best for you and your health and you should do as I say or suffer the consequences". Stop barging on other people's lives and take care of your own. Buy a Gas Mask if you are so scared. Or do you actually want to project your fears onto somebody else and make them go through all the trouble (that you want to impose) while you live free and happy in the Wonderful World of your Desired Paradise where you do nothing and other people do whatever you want?

And it is really shocking to see people calling someone else an idiot. If you question so much, have you ever thought that the same media that announces and endorses psychics, homeopathy, dowsing (?), scientology (and "studies" supporting all of this), is the same media that is selling all this "Stop smoking or you will kill humanity" stuff? So, have you ever questioned that there is a legitimate cause for someone to somewhat doubt the studies that are being forwarded by the media, instead of thinking they are idiots just because they don't share your enlightened brain capabilities? Sometimes a little understanding is appreciated.

And just a example of what I'm saying just look at the last sentences of the post.

"[...]so that they can get addicted and sick. And die."


What is that? So you're saying that if I don't get addicted and sick by smoking I'll live forever? Is that it?

Of course not, but then again, was IS it saying? Apparently just a "Mr. Mackey lecture": You shouldn't do cigarettes kids, because cigarettes are bad. And death is a good way to scare people right? Specially when you leave out the fact that they are going to die either way (smoking or non-smoking).

And as I think you would (or should) agree. "There's probably no God. So don't worry and enjoy your life." Mainly with some fine cubans.
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written by Willy K, January 15, 2009
Dear Smoker,

Stop making idiotic excuses. If you want to jump off a cliff I will try to convince you not to do it, just don't try and grab me to fall with you. smilies/tongue.gif
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DanielJREF, thanks for the link...
written by BillyJoe, January 15, 2009
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNwgoDkAQRE

Uri Geller is an idiot....but even an idiot gets it right sometimes.

Credit where it's due.

BJ
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written by BillyJoe, January 15, 2009
And for your follow-up post.

I agree
- we should attack smoking, not smokers.
- the ill-effects of side-stream smoking have been overexaggerated (sorry for the neologism)by both reseachers and media and the facts do not justify the extreme measures being suggested
- everyone has a right to smoke but...
- the evidence for the ill-effects of smoking justify a total ban on cigarette advertising and strong anti-smoking campaigns by the government and..
- smokers need an informed choice regarding smoking.

But I do not apologise for that "Tristan Noel you are an idiot" comment, because he is an idiot. He is not a real smoker himself but he ignores (or is ignorant of) the evidence against smoking to support smoking by others. That is dispicable. In comparison, Uri Geller is a genius and a saint.
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written by BillyJoe, January 15, 2009
Oh, and Daniel,

"There's probably no God. So don't worry and enjoy your life." Mainly with some fine cubans.

A few fine cubans is fine
Twenty a day and you're an idiot also. smilies/cool.gif

regards,
BJ
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The famous German presenter Gunther Jauch
written by ciccio, January 15, 2009
I just looked the the Geller site and found the very appropriately named Jauch presented the program. I am sure there is a slight spelling mistake in the name, it should be Jauche. Jauche is very common on German farms, a slurry made of animal excrement used as fertilizer.
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written by cwniles, January 15, 2009
This is like watching Reefer Madness or one of those After School Specials....the guy smokes three cloves a day and calamity ensues. Hilariously exaggerated comparisons to "drunk driving" and committing suicide by "jumping off a cliff" are portrayed. The poor fool ends up straight jacketed in an insane asylum, the ethereal chant "just one more drag" echoing from his cell....
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written by BillyJoe, January 15, 2009
The famous German presenter Gunther Jauch


So why where the subtitles and the 1,2,3 in dutch.
(I can read and understand spoken dutch)
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written by heathencat, January 15, 2009
I have to admit, I'm always amazed at what is socially acceptable to say about smokers.

"But then, I've always thought that smokers are pretty dense, anyway. They actually choose to take up a habit that's dirty, deadly dangerous, objectionable, antisocial, and provably stupid, so that they can get addicted and sick."

I am curious, would you say that about heroin addict, or a meth addict? Maybe you would, I don't know. I would hope not though. Addicts are addicts for reasons that people who aren't addicts have trouble understanding. To say that any addict is just "stupid" is undermining those reasons, and doesn't help the person who is choosing to use the drug. It's not a very humane way of looking at the situation, and it does not help people to quit.

FYI, for anyone who is curious, harm reduction is an evidence-based, realistic approach to reducing the harm associated with any drug (including tobacco). Check out www.tobaccoharmreduction.org if you're a smoker, and can't seem to quit.
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written by yarro, January 15, 2009
So why where the subtitles and the 1,2,3 in dutch.
(I can read and understand spoken dutch)


Because this was on Dutch Public TV Netherlands 1 (VARA Television).
It's a high profile discussion programme presented by Pauw & Witteman.
The clip is from january last year, before the start of the Next Uri Geller Show season 1.
Geller was interviewed on his "accomplishments" and the new show. It was his first appearance on Ducth television since the 70's. (apart from a documentary on the relegation troubles of Exeter City FC and Swansea City FC, Geller was at the time chairman of Exeter City)
He did some spoon bending and a hot reading of one of the presenters who obviously never heard of the technique and was duly impressed. Geller continued with his anti-smoking campaign. That's wat you see in the clip. It's old news. He did the anti-smoking thing on his show in february 2008 on German TV.

Günther Jauch is the German presenter of the Next Uri Geller Show on German commercial channel Pro Sieben.
The almost identical Dutch version is on commercial channel SBS 6 (subsidiary of the Pro Sieben Group).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eJtuO8UHqE
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Thanks.
written by BillyJoe, January 15, 2009
Okay, perhaps he is just being a media whore here.
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written by Kuroyume, January 15, 2009
I am curious, would you say that about heroin addict, or a meth addict? Maybe you would, I don't know. I would hope not though. Addicts are addicts for reasons that people who aren't addicts have trouble understanding. To say that any addict is just "stupid" is undermining those reasons, and doesn't help the person who is choosing to use the drug. It's not a very humane way of looking at the situation, and it does not help people to quit.


Did I not say something very similar in another Swift article? And I was disembowled for defending people who became addicted and then 'possibly might do' bad things thereby? I, in no way, defended those who would produce or distribute such items that cause addiction. Nonetheless, people who become addicted must choose it and are guilty, guilty, guilty! That sounds like a sound, logical argument to me....

One thing to remember is this: if a person chooses (voluntarily or involuntarily) to do something that, in actuality, harms noone else, can one be so hateful of the act to denegrate it as illegal or immoral or worthy of bodily harm and death (see homosexuality down the ages)? Some addictions do lead to behavior that does indeed harm others. This is fact. On the other hand, this is not ALWAYS THE CASE. As skeptics, aren't we supposed to guard against blatant generalizations? When is the last time you heard of a smoker killing his family, particularly, because he smoked? On the other hand, consumption of alcohol, which is proper and prim, results in many deaths by those operating machinery, vehicles (being redundant), or weapons while being intoxicated. So, we should make alcoholic beverages illegal? Prohibition, 1920-1933, saw the largest increase in organized crime in human history! So, the benefit of banning alcohol resulted in highly organized, maniacal thugs with Thompson machine guns riddling people with bullets. You judge the sanity of such 'morality'.

The sane approach is to realize that people get addicted and that there are substances that qualify as addictive agents. Then you implement regulations to guard against monopolies, cartels, black markets, abuses, as well as provide means for those who do get addicted and want help to extricate themselves from their circumstances. Unlike methamphetamines and alcohol, which are human-made products fyi and btw, marijuana, tobacco, poppies, peyote, mushrooms are natural things. Do we wage war on plants? Well, in the case of weed, yes, farcically, we do! The USA spends a disproportionate amount of money on the DEA to stop the distribution and sale of the cannabis sativa plant - in simply dried form like tobacco! Case studies showing reefer as a massively dangerous substance (beyond its illegal status), please?

(No, I don't smoke or do drugs for over two decades, tyvm)
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written by Willy K, January 15, 2009
written by Willy K, January 15, 2009
Dear Smoker,
Stop making idiotic excuses. If you want to jump off a cliff I will try to convince you not to do it, just don't try and grab me to fall with you. smilies/tongue.gif
Votes: -3


Oh my goodness gracious, I has seen the enemy and I is it! MINUS 3, must be my IQ smilies/cry.gif
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written by Cuddy Joe, January 16, 2009
When you see denigrative, ugly broadstroke stereotypes lumping all smokers or all addicts together as 'stupid' or whatever else, you are not seeing someone addressing smokers/addicts per se, you are seeing someone who needs to feel superior.
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written by cwniles, January 16, 2009
eh, dont worry about it Willy, my first comment in this thread is still sitting at -3 just because I made a humorous remark about Mr. Randi.

Just for the record, I rarely vote comments up or down, and certainly did not vote your comment down.

I did vote heathencats comment up however as it struck as an excellent post. One of the probably 4 or 5 times I have bothered to vote on a comment.
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It's not the health issue
written by Die Anyway, January 16, 2009
I see that a lot of people are focusing on the health issue. For me, I don't care if smokers smoke themselves into a case of lung cancer or not. To me the main issue is the stench and the secondary issue is the litter. Randi got it right with the "dirty" and "objectionable" descriptions. Cigarette and cigar smoke STINKS. Smokers certainly have the right to accept the health risks of smoking but they shouldn't have the right to stink up my clothing, the air I have to breath and the buildings I have to visit. And take a look at the curb the next time you are stopped at a traffic light. Intersections are littered with thousands of cigarette butts, as is the drift line along the beach. Smoke and die, I don't care. As my name says, we are all going to die anyway. Just please don't make my life miserable in the meantime by having to smell that nasty cigarette smoke.
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written by Surak, January 17, 2009
written by Chris Hughes, January 14, 2009
James -- when I started smoking it was the done, the acceptable thing to do. Eventually, thirty-three years ago, I kicked the stupid habit.
Then two years ago -- lung cancer! Bit of a bummer, but surgery seems to have dealt with it. I agree that anyone who starts smoking in the knowledge that it is a killer is probably being dense -- but we really didn't know back in the forties and fifties.


Right Chris ... you just didn't know. Sure.

Explain then why smokes were commonly referred to by the name 'coffin nails' back then?

Did you really need to be told that sucking oily grimy smoke into your body is bad for you?
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written by StarTrekLivz, January 17, 2009
King George V's personal physician was the first to draw a link between cigarette smoking & lung cancer (complications from which is what carried off King George, while his daughter, now Queen Elizabeth, was doing a tour of Africa).

Of course, most people at the time didn't believe him, and my parents (who like me never smoked) remembered cigarettes used to be recommended to treat TB and asthma by some physicians.
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written by BillyJoe, January 17, 2009
Surak,

You are being a bit unfair.

A few decades ago, there was not the information around like there is today about the ill=effects of smoking and, as STL says, doctors were even recommeding smoking as a treatment for certain conditions including as a relaxant for anxiety states.

In fact, it was unusual for people to stop smoking thirty years ago as Chris Hughes did. I'm not sure of his reasons for quitting, but all credit to him for doing so.

As for lung cancer: 1 in 9 people with primary lung cancer are non-smokers and therefore smoking is not the only cause....

...so watch out! smilies/wink.gif

BJ
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written by StarTrekLivz, January 18, 2009
According to Wikipedia, the first warnings on cigarette packages were in 1966 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T...g_messages

If you watch the AMC tv show "Mad Men," note how EVERYONE smokes EVERYWHERE: at work, in restaurants, on public transportation, around their kids, in hospitals.

Also, as has been hinted by some people posting, a lot of the opposition to smoking proceeds not from public health nor aesthetic dislike, but on "moral" grounds, by the kind of religious thought that smoking (like drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana, and myriad other activities, which in some sects includes viewing TV and movies, dancing, card-playing [anyone remember when playing cards were called "the devil's picture book?"], sex, etc.) was an immoral behavior. It was called "dirty" not in the sense of "leaving ashes and butts around" but like in "dirty" pictures, movies, etc. Some of the objections to smoking to this day are tainted with the moralizing tendency.

Note: my parents & my sister's family & I do not smoke, and never have: I always found the smell distasteful, and dislike second-hand smoke so much I could never understand why someone who voluntarily light one of the things up and smoke it. That is my personal taste; some of the science around second hand smoke seems ambiguous and greatly hyped, but I definitely prefer non-smoking environments.
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written by BillyJoe, January 18, 2009
Also, as has been hinted by some people posting, a lot of the opposition to smoking proceeds not from public health nor aesthetic dislike, but on "moral" grounds

If that is true it must be an American phenomenon. Either that or I have completely missed it here in Australia - here it is all about public health (and perhaps aesthetics)
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written by StarTrekLivz, January 18, 2009
Yes, friend BillyJoe, it IS a distinctly American phenomenon.

The home of various fundamentalist sects, where bizarre faiths like Mormon and Scientology were created (mostly to profit their founders).

There is a strong strand in the American psyche that "if it feels good, it must be a Sin." It goes back to our 17th century founders, and we have not altogether healed from it.
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written by gbeenie, January 18, 2009
Maybe he's on to something. Seeing Uri on TV has given me a lifelong aversion to spoons. smilies/wink.gif
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"We Didn't Know"
written by GusGus, January 19, 2009

Oh yes we did! I was born in 1937. So from the time I can remember intelligently (of course some would claim I haven't yet arrived), the late 40's or so, I can remember cigarettes being referred to as "Coffin Nails" and Cancer Sticks." The big problem was the product placements in movies showing smoking being sophisticated and glamorous. Imagine Fred Astair!!! smoking.

As a former smoker, I find being around smokers to be so difficult that I have to get away. I will not go to restaurants, etc. that allow smoking. I have a feeling that if I had never smoked, second-hand smoke would not bother me so much. I can't even stand to be near what appear to be chain smokers when they are not smoking because we're in a smoke-free environment - their clothes reek of smoke.

Why is it that when a building is smoke-free so that employees have to go outdoors to smoke, they will always go to the UPWIND side of the doorway so that I have to run the gantlet of smoke to enter or exit?
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Morons ...
written by Bill Henry, January 21, 2009
I used to go to parties where there were 20 people smoking and I was the only one not. I was constantly offered cigs and turned them down. Now I hate the smell of 2nd hand smoke. I will not eat where I have to smell it. I will not go into a casino that allows smoking. Sorry, the only reason people ever take up smoking is to fit in and/or impress people. What a gutless way to do it.

You are offensive if you smoke where others have to smell your smoke. You are offensive if you feel that your butts are allowed to go on the ground.

Personally I don't think tax payers should have to pay for smokers health insurance. I would like to see everyone who gets their health care coverage through the government ( I am a government employee) have to pay a premium if they smoke. I also think they should get hit for weight issues (say a graduated scale for BMI over 30), excessive alcohol consumption (that one I would have to pay for) or for illegal drug use. I hate coddling people, or hearing that it is a disease and we have to help them.
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Don't wanna breathe your smoke.
written by Marlinspike, January 22, 2009
Wow, Uri Geller as an anti-smoking advocate. This just demonstrates that even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

As a health care professional the U.S. I'm acutely aware of the efforts here to curb smoking. Those efforts are almost exclusively based on the health effects of tobacco consumption. Certain religious sects do object to smoking on moral grounds but their objections don't receive nearly the level of publicity that medically motivated stop smoking campaigns do. The decision to smoke is certainly personal and one might even be proud of the decision to engage in that activity. But don't expect me to praise or support your decision in any way. I must also point out that in 1979 the adverse effects of smoking were well known, well documented and receiving widespread publicity despite the tobacco industry's longstanding efforts to suppress or obfuscate such knowledge.

BillyJoe writes "..1 in 9 people with primary lung cancer are non-smokers and therefore smoking is not the only cause.... " While I haven't validated your data I can't help but point out that according to you 9 of 10 people with primary lung cancer are smokers. So, while there may be other causes it seems there is an undeniably powerful link between smoking and lung cancer.

Additionally, demonstrating a supremely callous disregard for others, smokers tend to believe that once they have put out their cigarette that's the end of the issue of second hand smoke. Nothing could be further from the truth. Have you ever gotten in an elevator with a smoker? Especially one who has just finished a cigarette? Imagine if you will a child with asthma who is forced to live with such a smoker, or to sit in an enclosed car with that smoker. I find it astonishing when a parent comes to visit their child who has been admitted to an Intensive Care Unit for asthma exacerbation and severe respiratory distress (sometimes complete respiratory failure requiring a ventilator for support) and the scent of tobacco smoke overwhelms the room. When I point out the smell they tell me they "...only smoke outside." That I can tell they smoke without asking never seems to have effect on them.

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...
written by BillyJoe, January 22, 2009
BillyJoe writes "..1 in 9 people with primary lung cancer are non-smokers and therefore smoking is not the only cause.... " While I haven't validated your data I can't help but point out that according to you 9 of 10 people with primary lung cancer are smokers. So, while there may be other causes it seems there is an undeniably powerful link between smoking and lung cancer.

It is from memory, but I'm pretty sure this is correct. In any case I was using this statistic against someone here who was attacking a poster who actually gave up smoking and was unfortunate enough to still developed lung cancer 2 decades later.

I think it is important to keep focussed on the smoking, not the smoker. I am in favour of laws that restrict smoking (in Australia you cannot smoke in an elevator, workplace, restaurant, or any public place for that matter) but I am not in favour of beating up, verbally or physically, the hapless smoker.
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