Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Why snus will stay banned

Tomorrow sees the release of the EU's Tobacco Products Directive. Despite overwhelming real-world evidence that snus has helped Sweden achieve the lowest smoking rate—and the lowest lung cancer rate—in Europe, the snus ban will remain in place.

Why? This document from the EU's Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety gives a short and honest answer:

We very much welcome that the prohibition of Snus outside Sweden will be maintained. Especially in this case it would be very harmful for the credibility of the European Institutions if the current rules would be liberalized.

That's the important thing, eh? We wouldn't want the EU to damage its credibility by admitting it made a mistake.

Shame on them.

(H/T Clive Bates)


Jean Granville said...

Actually, I don't even understand why it would be bad for the credibility of the European institutions to liberalize current rules. Do they mean that they are only credible if they prove that they can keep in place unfair and criminal rules despite all available evidence? In a sense, they do prove something, but it's still a bit hard to imagine that they really mean that.

In any case, that can add to the material for some future class action.

boltonsmokersclub said...

I am not quite sure that I follow what is happening. The EPP is 'The European Peoples Party'. Am I right in thinking that the EPP is a group of political parties in the European Parliament?
It seems that the tobacco directive needs to be accepted by the commission before it goes to the Parliament. The Environment etc committee seems to be a committee of the Parliament. It is that committee which is to be addressed by invited zealots (with one token exception).
So it seems that the document from the EPP is just a propaganda exercise, and therefore relates not to reality. Thus, the statement in the EPP doc that 'Scientists argue that menthol, for example helps the poison go down easier' is just a lie. We can also note that the final sentence statement that 'there is scientific evidence that maternal smoking causes cot death' is a vicious lie which stigmatises mothers who smoke and ought to have been challenged by a class action by a group of such mothers in court.
The requirements for such civil actions already exist. One such is the ban on snus. (is that a ban on the import and sale of snus?) A group of people could sue on the grounds that they are being denied a substance which might help them to stop smoking.

So, am I right in thinking the Tobacco Directive situation is merely that it will be published?


Kwaione said...

@Boltonsmokingclub you mean published but not followed through but to get the word out it failed when more lenient rules are on the way? or usure because of the wording is not clear? thanks ! :)

NJS said...

I just dropped by for a few minutes and find it so refreshing to read your site. Control-freakery seems to be everywhere; although, in Brazil, where smoking 'bans' exist even in al fresco bars and restaurants, the management seem, quite naturally, to accommodate smokers unless someone objects - and they seldom do. So far, I haven't seen any clipboard waving local authority Gestapo interfering. Possibly, Brazil tows the line, in a notional way, to appear 'advanced'. I have to confess that I'd prefer them openly to give the finger to creeping modern fascism.