As an older person - well, old actually, - seventy two in September, I have watched how the world has changed.
I have knowledge that young people don't have. They only think they have it! But experientially, they know nothing. They only know what they have been told to know.
And young people simply take for granted the absence of things that were, once, BAD things, like Polio, Smallpox, and Tuberculosis for instance. Things that I remember. In this respect, we have been blessed by the work done by science to make life safer for all of us. There has been great progress.
At the beginning of my life the Pharmaceutical Companies were very small - insignificant really, except for Bayer which enriched itself producing the lethal gas Zyklon B for the German Concentration Camps. The labour force for IG Farben was slave labour in factories that it built adjacent to German concentration camps.
Chemists and Pharmacies mixed their own medications for sick people, and doctors knew more about healing than they do nowadays.
"Nevertheless, at the start of the 1930s, most medicines were sold without a prescription and nearly half were compounded locally by pharmacists. In many cases, physicians dispensed medicines directly to patients; companies often supplied physicians with their favorite formulations. While the medical profession was well-established in Europe and America, the pharmaceutical industry was only beginning to develop medicines to treat pain, infectious diseases, heart conditions, and other ailments." Link
There were mixtures and pills that were made by small companies, but none of them had the power, the profitability or the clout that they do now. Except for the aforsaid IG Farben Group, which got rich by getting into bed with the German Government. They were at a great advantage of being able to experiment on the occupants of Concentration Camps. Link
So, the benefit of using experimental evidence became clear to Medicine-in-general and Drug Companies in particular and after World War Two, Pharmaceutical Companies relied heavily on science - especially "double blinded" experiments. Vaccination and anti-biotics had been discovered and new technology helped in medical laboratories. Soon the Medical profession accepted "science based medicine".
And Government legislation entered the scene - The Food and Drugs Administration in the USA and less stringent regulation in Europe setting formal standards for drug testing and manufacture and "distinguished over-the-counter therapies from prescription drugs. This division, in turn, drove further specialization by the pharmaceutical industry into high-profit prescription-only medicines." Link
The Pharmaceutical Industry used some very unsavoury tactics to increase their profits, and designed products for specially profitable groups of people. Most of this was done in secret and their sales were directed at doctors/ medical profession, and their new mates, the Ministry of Health/ Public Health aka Government departments. Illness became big business.
"Whereas it made sense to speak of an American, German, French, or British drug company as recently as a decade ago, mergers and greater cross-national R&D investments have since rendered such delineation largely irrelevant. Between 1985 and 2005, nearly 40 major mergers produced firms of an unprecedented size and scope in the pharmaceutical industry." Link
This is "Big Pharma". Big Pharma, for all it's present and past failings, has made life better.
From the beginning of last century, simultaneously, there was the rise of Big Tobacco. By the time I was born "25 to 35 percent (of women) smoked in the late 1940s and peaked at around 30 to 35 percent in the early 1960s" Link
and most men smoked (75%). People smoked everywhere. Smoking was a most profitable social behaviour for Big Tobacco. And Big Tobacco was profitable for Governments. And profitable for Big Pharma too. Lung cancer was on the rise. Smoking was the cause said Doll and Hill. They got the idea from numerous German studies done for Adolf Hitler, an ex-smoker who hated smoking. And the fact that Allied soldiers were given tobacco/cigarette rations in both World Wars boosted the habit of smoking in men.
In 1962 Royal College of Physicians of London and the 1964 report of the Surgeon General warning the American public of the dangers of smoking made loads of people stop smoking. I remember that. Lots of educated - and not-so-educated people stopped smoking. There was no "Tobacco Control", legislation, or force. But people stopped smoking out of their own logic.
The first World Conference on Smoking and Health was held in New York. The second in London. The new United Nations World Health Organisation that rose out of the ashes of war was finding its feet, became interested in the issue of smoking. These organisations, together with the health departments of different countries, realised that lung cancer was depressingly difficult to treat so the Medical Profession was of the opinion that to control its suspected source (tobacco) rather than constantly fail in its treatment would be a good thing. To control the Tobacco Industry, it needed impetus from everyone - all sources interested in health under one roof - the United Nations birthed Tobacco Control. "The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) is the pre-eminent global tobacco control instrument." Link
At first, it was more about the Tobacco Industry, and less about smokers.
But, recently (in historical terms, and in terms of MY life), there has sprung up a whole industry around Tobacco Control - a self sustaining industry, to improve the conditions of human life that has overridden democracy and sovereignty and had consequences world wide by its costly parasitical relationship with governments.
In its short life - just over ten years, The Tobacco Control Directive, has deformed into an ugly thing. A thing that intrudes into all aspects of everyone's life - outdoors and indoors, publicly and privately, and, more significantly, into the minds of the people - to infect them deliberately with guilt and fear. To manipulate, not just the Tobacco Industry, but every person who smoked/smokes and every person who didn't/doesn't.
Thus arrived to my world the imposition upon me, not of my own mind or choice, not for my education, not with anything considering the personal "me" but to FORCE me - force me via legislation to stop smoking. Smoking, smokers, were to be erased from history. Eliminated. A sophisticated genocide. Even the press colluded by not publishing anything about the anguish of smokers or the habit of smoking and photo shopped smoking out of press pictures. The BBC now produce movies about the war, or the 1960's that are completely unauthentic because no one smokes in them. And the erasing of the smoking habit from public knowledge continues ad nauseum - especially hiding it from children.
The world has changed now. It has become anal, divided and prescribed - censored. Young people will not know the difference, but old people - even non smokers - know it, taste it, feel it, fear it.
It harbours all the horrible ideas that we find in Nineteen Eighty Four - the book by George Orwell. It's worth watching this funny old movie Nineteen Eighty Four, to understand a summary of it for those who don't read. (The newest version seems unobtainable on You Tube for UK viewers.)
"And when memory failed and written records were falsified—when that
happened, the claim of the Party to have improved the conditions
of human life had got to be accepted, because there did not exist,
and never again could exist, any standard against which it could
― George Orwell, 1984
Human life was far more spontaneous, fulfilled, socially cohesive, less anxious, more creative and could I say happy? before Tobacco Control strove to change us.
The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control is a template. It's an example of world domination by the few over the many. It is the way we can expect our health to be delivered in the future - by force. It is the way that perfectly legal things, in use by many, can be made unacceptable. And a strange new form of discrimination is evolving before our eyes, that is encouraged by governments, and government bodies against their own citizens. Anything goes - banning, exclusion, abuse. Any treatment is good - taxation, fines, defacement of product. Any persecution of smokers/vapers is simply accepted by the docile mass because what smokers/vapers "do" is BAD.
So what is the road back to a sane society? Well, for me, the first step was the successful energy- inducing, empowering, heady, Brexit vote in the United Kingdom. We, the people, spoke.
This does not release us from the domination of the EU because the UK is a signatory to the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
But it's a start.
I hear rumours that UKIP are requesting a re-assessment of the smoking ban. The smoking ban was adopted by parliament in 2007 on a political ruse by ASH - a UK Tobacco Control spawn. If a re-assessment of the smoking ban thing is true, I will put my vote behind UKIP. If the present government does not exit the EU to our wishes, the next election could see a huge swing to UKIP, or whatever party it morphs into.
So the way back to a saner society, is to use our voting power. And to demand a reassessment of the smoking ban.
Vapers and smokers need to function together, Those who interfere with Vaping are the very SAME Tobacco Control enforcers abusing smokers. They have come for us too!
The way back to a saner society, is to expose all the collaborators with Tobacco Control, the ones working to implement The Tobacco Control Directive. We need to expose them one by one, as corrupt institutions feeding off governments, for their own benefit. Lobbying always for their own advancement. They are not producing a product like the Pharmaceutical Industry, or (the still) successful Tobacco Industry. They produce nothing but ideas of prohibition by force - the control of a few over the many. They are gross feeders on our economy. We need to speak out. We need to expose the unintended consequences of Tobacco Control foolishness like this in Australia. We need to speak out for the 20% of people who smoke.
“Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.”
― George Orwell, 1984
Our minds have been torn apart. Society has been made to forget that the real evil is in the subjugation of our minds to an ideology in which any oppressive action against a few people is acceptable - nay - desireable even.
“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—for ever.”
― George Orwell, 1984
We do not need boots stomping on any faces - smokers and vapers need consideration, not boots. Vapers will not get consideration, until smokers have it. It is not the 1960's anymore. We have more knowledge via the Internet than we have ever had before. Even the "lowest classes" know that smoking can be harmful. We have helpful cigarette substitution technology in vaping and we have grown up. We need not rail against Big Pharma, Big Tobacco, Big Food, Big Sugar, or any other Biggies. We need to rail against Healthism by force. And expose new industries, like Tobacco Control especially (because it is the template for others), for what they are - outdated, costly leeches of the most arrogant, obnoxious - and DANGEROUS kind.