I spend time learning about the tobacco industry and their tactics as I find doing so helps me stay focused and stay quit. If the message below does not help you get pissed off at the people who produce, market and sell tobacco I am not sure anything will.
Lies and deception
For years, the tobacco industry has known of the health consequences of tobacco and its addictive component, nicotine. In 1954, tobacco researchers commented, “It’s fortunate for us that tobacco is a habit consumers can’t break.”
In 1964, an internal British American Tobacco document discussed the issue of nicotine and addiction, “There seems no doubt that the ‘kick’ of tobacco is due to the concentration of nicotine in the bloodstream which it achieves, and this is a product of the quantity of nicotine in the tobacco and the speed of transfer of that nicotine
into the bloodstream.”
In 1969, a Philip Morris researcher bluntly stated, “We have, then, as our first premise, that the primary motivation for tobacco use is to obtain the pharmacological effect of nicotine.” Philip Morris researchers also concluded: “The cigarette should be conceived not as a product but as a package. The product is nicotine. The cigarette is but one of many package layers. There is the carton, which contains the pack, which contains the cigarette, which contains the smoke. The smoker must strip off all these package layers to get to that which he seeks… Think of a cigarette pack as a storage container for a day’s supply of nicotine… Think of a cigarette as a dispenser for a dose unit of nicotine… Think of a puff of smoke as the vehicle of nicotine…”
For Big Tobacco, failure to win the debate over regulating nicotine in tobacco threatened its existence as an industry. In a 1972 internal memorandum the director of research for R.J. Reynolds wrote, “If, as proposed above, nicotine is the sine qua non of tobacco use, and if we meekly accept the allegations of our critics and move toward reduction or elimination of nicotine from our products, then we shall eventually liquidate our business. If we intend to remain in business and our business is the manufacture and sale of dosage forms of nicotine, then at some point we must make a stand.”
For Big Tobacco researchers, the evidence of the addictiveness of nicotine kept piling up. In a 1983 internal Brown Williamson memorandum, the message was clear “Nicotine is the addicting agent in tobacco.”
On April 14, 1994, the CEOs of the seven leading tobacco companies testified under oath in a hearing held by the U.S. Congress House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health and the Environment. Despite extensive internal research on the issue of nicotine and addiction, Big Tobacco’s executives testified that they believed that nicotine was not addictive. Below is the transcript of the relevant exchange on that issue:
Rep. Ron Wyden (D-OR): Thank you, Mr. Chairman… Let me begin my questioning on the matter of whether or not nicotine is addictive. Let me ask you first, and I’d like to just go down the row, whether each of you believes that nicotine is not addictive. I heard virtually all of you touch on it. Just yes or no. Do you believe nicotine is not addictive?
Mr. Campbell (President and CEO, Philip Morris, USA): I believe nicotine is not addictive, yes.
Rep. Wyden: Mr. Johnston?
Mr. Johnston (Chairman and CEO, RJR Tobacco Co.): Congressman, cigarettes and nicotine clearly do not meet the classic definitions of addiction. There is no intoxication.
Rep. Wyden: We’ll take that as a no and, again, time is short. If you can just – I think each of you believe nicotine is not addictive. We just would like to have this for the record.
Mr. Taddeo (President, US Tobacco Co.): I don’t believe that nicotine or our products are addictive.
Mr. Horrigan (Chairman and CEO, Liggett Group): I believe nicotine is not addictive.
Mr. Tisch (Chairman and CEO, Lorillard Tobacco Co.): I believe that nicotine is not addictive.
Mr. Sandefur (Chairman and CEO, Brown Williamson Tobacco Corp.): I believe that nicotine is not addictive.
Mr. Donald Johnston (President and CEO, American Tobacco Co.): And I, too, believe that nicotine is not addictive.
As pressure in the U.S. has increased to curb its marketing to children, Big Tobacco has focused more of its advertising in developing nations. A World Health Organization (WHO)-Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study found that 11 percent of children in Latin America and the Caribbean were offered tobacco by company representatives in 1999 and 2000. In Russia, nearly 17 percent said they were given free tobacco products. In Jordan, it was a whopping 25 percent!
These efforts are found all over the world. According to Vera da Costa e Silva, director of the WHO’s tobacco program, Big Tobacco is making a big move to hook children outside of the United States:
“This is the right time for the tobacco industry to seduce children overseas. They are looking to increase the number of users in developing countries and elsewhere abroad because in the United States they are losing their market shares.”
Tobacco kills an estimated four million people around the globe each year. Because of growing international sales, experts believe that by the year 2020, one in three adult deaths in the world will be caused by smoking and other tobacco use. And these experts believe that by the year 2030, over ten million deaths worldwide will be caused each year by tobacco use. Tobacco is expected to be the leading cause of death worldwide in less than thirty years; 70 percent of these deaths will occur in developing countries.
Other global practices by Big Tobacco have come under fire:
- 520,000 children work on tobacco farms in Brazil, and a third of them
are under the age of 14 years old.
- Children in southern Brazil are removed from classes before the end of
the school year to help with the harvest the tobacco crop.
- The average monthly income for a tobacco-growing family in Brazil is
334 Reals, the equivalent of $137.
Understand that to Big tobacco you are nothing more than “a percentage of market share” the pain and suffering of you and your lost family members means nothing to these death dealers. They have knowingly marketed and produced a product that when used as directed will result in early death for the people who use it. If you ever think you miss this shit, read some of the tactics they have used over the years and it should help keep you quit. As I have said before, I will set my money on fire before I ever give these people one cent of it.