Thursday, January 26, 2006

Loathsome people



Another pay-for-play journalist has been unmasked. The contemptible Stephen Milloy, who has long ridiculed every study of the effects of second-hand smoke, along with other studies that big business finds inconvenient, was actually being paid for his opinions. He was paid by Philip Morris (Altria) and ExxonMobile, $92,000 in one year. According to the The New Republic article on Milloy, the alleged journalist has been receiving payola since the 90s. It's not hard to find Milloy's paid opinions on smoking arrayed on his too-aptly-named site, junkscience.com.

The studies on second-hand smoke were the beginning of the end of the free ride for Big Tobacco. Before those studies arrived, everyone was willing to gamely suffer the fumes of the smokers around them. When people learned they could get cancer themselves, the laissez-faire attitude ended instantly. Big Tobacco lost the fight over pretending that nicotine wasn't addictive, and they lost the fight over deliberately interesting children in their product. But they never stop trying to make it more acceptable to smoke, and they never will.

There are five women in my life right now who have emphysema or cancer, or both. One of them has never smoked, for religious reasons, although her husband smoked constantly. Second-hand smoke causes medical problems, as repeated studies show, and simple common sense would tell you.

If you smoke, you should stop. Smoking is not going to kill you, for a quick death would be a blessing. Instead, you will suffer for a long time before you die. There's nothing romantic about it, and I promise that you're not going to feel as devil-may-care about it at the end as you do now, smoking "socially" with your friends outside the bar. The end is all puking and pain, plus the bitter, bitter feelings of the friends and family who will watch you suffer, a long time, until you die. Don't smoke.

And if you're Stephen Milloy, I can only wish that you would suffer for a long time before you die.

(photo from jmanx.com)

2 Comments:

Blogger Ed Park said...

Damn dude! I'm glad I quit smoking :O

Friday, 27 January, 2006  
Anonymous quasicrazy said...

Second hand smoke is such a grossly unfair situation. It makes me angry, sad, and ultimately, just leaves me feeling hopeless.

I wish there were enclosed vestibules on every street corner where all smokers must go to smoke so that the only people who must secondhand smoke are the ones who also get it firsthand. Come to think of it, that might be the best way to get them to quit, too. I'd know, too, I smoked heavily for 6 or so years. I know what Marlboro Country looks like: a vast expanse of yellow teeth, smelly clothes, and a raspy cough.

Friday, 27 January, 2006  

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