Archive for tobacco

Anti-Pot Chris Matthews Rails Against Alcohol And Tobacco, Too

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MatthewsKennedyw349h222video below at end of post

There's never a time when the unpredictable Chris Matthews isn't opinionated. That's what he's best known for and he's made a niche for himself being just that -- outspoken and oftentimes outrageous -- on his MSNBC show, HARDBALL.  He's so self-inflated in importance he oftentimes loses sight of logic and reason. He's the aging old dog that has been gifted with a relatively meaty bone and doesn't let you get near it with his growling and barking. Even after the bone's been chewed clean of the last hint of anything to eat, even its aroma of past pleasures, he's protective.

Yesterday was a case in point. Now it's a bit unusual for him to disagree, even somewhat reluctantly, with President Obama. He will, from time to time pick around the edges, but as a general rule he allows the President to make his own decisions and justifies them with the Big O's surrounding himself with qualified minions to help him form intelligent choices.

Chris took exception to Obama's coming out publicly and stating what a vast majority of Americans and pillars of the scientific community have been saying for years now. Pot is not good for you in general, but it's no more harmful than alcohol and tobacco.

That wasn't strong enough this time for Matthews. He decided that scientific evidence isn't good enough in this case. So he traipsed out two of the Kennedy clan -- newer generations of the Camelot crew -- Christopher Lawford and Patrick Kennedy. Both recovering addicts -- but not from pot -- from Alcohol and pills.

In Matthews' mind, and perhaps to these fine, brave gentlemen, one addiction is the same as another. And I'm not sure they're wrong. Addictive personalities can be just as harmful whether the vice is drinking, drugs, sex, video games, pornography, eating, et.al. The bottom line is anything can get you high if abused. That's the point of the book that Lawford was really on the show to promote. He wasn't there as an expert, but rather a survivor who was trying to sell his book, which Matthews gladly promoted at the end of the interview. If that makes you know more than someone else, fine. But surviving a 12 step program doesn't make you a counselor.  It makes you a veteran.

So after all was said and done, Chris, who's about as current as last week's expired milk in your refrigerator, made an anti-pot stand. And I'll applaud him for that -- speaking his mind -- or what's left of it. His ability to idolize Ronald Reagan and his former boss, Tip O'Neill while overlooking all the laws these two men broke, shows that he's still got the '70s going on in his mind. But granting him that clouded thinking, he's now going after pot with a similar cloud around his thinking.

His argument is that pot is a gateway to other vices. Maybe it is, but that's like saying drinking milk leads you to over eating chocolate chip cookies or Oreos. They are really not connected, but you could statistically make an argument.

So if Chris wants to take on the 'pot is bad for you' challenge, saying that it is as dangerous as tobacco and alcohol, then why isn't he pushing for tobacco and alcohol being outlawed? Certainly scientifically we can prove these two substances are dangerous, cause deaths and are gateways to all sorts of crimes and misdeeds, not just death.

Or maybe I missed the point. Perhaps that IS what Matthews on HARDBALL was really saying. Using his own argument, that pot can be addictive and lead to dangerous behavior, tobacco and alcohol should be against the law. If what's good for the goose is good for the gander, than he should be taking his soapbox to Capitol Hill and start rallying Congress for a revisit to the Volstead Act as well as banning all tobacco products. They're as dangerous (or as safe) as marijuana.

What? That's not what he meant? Then what was he doing when he chose to argue against legalization where the usage of cannabis products are monitored and quality is checked? Hundreds if not thousands died from bathtub gin and moonshine during prohibition. That's because there were no quality controls of the products. And to get these elixirs, how many were killed in back alleys or gunned down by the likes of Capone and his lieutenants?

Today we're unfairly incarcerating people, outrageous numbers of minorities, all over a little plant that has still not been proven to be any more harmful than legally obtained alcohol and tobacco. So move the soap box to another corner, Chris. Your arguments to outlaw pot are the same ones to make cigarettes and booze illegal. I don't think you'll want to take to the air to defend that. But you did. And here it is:

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Welcome To The Explosive World Of Vaping

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eCigs

A week ago, three U.S. congresspersons,  Reps. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) and Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.) wrote in a letter to the Food and Drug Administration. They complained that e-Cigarette companies are taking advantage of a “loophole” in current regulations that allows them to escape the type of oversight given to the rest of the tobacco industry.

Really. The tobacco industry is getting nervous. That can't be all bad. Remember, these are the peddlers of cancer sticks they call tobacco cigarettes.

What this trio of representatives is really complaining about isn't regulation of the product based on contents, health, or dangers. It's competition. Commerce. They're doing their dirty deeds under the guise of trying to protect children from vaping -- using eCigs.

First, I don't want to see kids smoking. Certainly not cigarettes. Yet the health hazards equated to eCigs and related vaporizing devices, according to the Daily Consumer Alert are not all that drastic.

A few of the benefits claimed from using the electronic cigarette:

No tar, tobacco, carbon monoxide, or ash.
Get the same amount of nicotine as a regular cigarette.
Each cartridge costs less than $2 and is equivalent to an entire pack of cigarettes.
Average consumer can expect to save over $1,000 each year.
You won’t “smell” like a smoker any longer.
Different flavors are available.
No more second-hand smoke.

bloomberg reports on eCigsYet because there is no tobacco in these products, they don't fall under the strict guidelines the FDA has set up for tobacco products. One of those restrictions has to do with access to anyone under 18.

Will kids start taking up eCig usage and vape? You bet, just like with regular cigarettes. But is this healthier for them? Probably, but that's what research is for.

Then the question becomes, before a product is deemed needing regulation, do kids need extra protection, just in case? Hesitantly I say, maybe. But I'm not sure yet of the motives of the people trying to bring parity with the tobacco industry regulations. I've got questions as to who's bidding these congresspeople are doing. Are they interested in the children, or is this a lobbyist attempt to help out what could be a dying cigarette industry?

Maybe if they want to bust open their books and return any money they've received in contributions in the past or currently, I might be inclined to be less dubious of their putting some "sin" in sincerity.

If vaping grows as rapidly as it looks to be doing, there's cause for tobacco to worry. Cigarettes won't die out forever, but they may becomes yesterday's news.

A year ago I didn't know anyone who had tried an eCig. Today I know a few. And those are all people used to smoke cigarettes. They don't anymore. I've asked if they enjoy the experience and unanimously they say yes.

Formerly, the cigarette smoker's clothes and even their bodies reeked of old cigarettes. Their breath wasn't fresh, and when they'd  taken a hit or two in my presence, I got a headache from the smoke smell. Not now. With the eCig usage I noticed nothing more than a light waft of soft, fragrant aroma. It's less than passing by mid-summer, night-blooming jasmine.

So maybe these congresspeople should cool their jets. Do some research. If eCigs require more regulation, it'll come. But after research.

Until then, check out the newest advertising for eCigs. An adult campaign isn't going to get kids to want to give vaping a try. See for yourself.

Hmm. You know what I wrote up above -- Never mind.

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