|The Property Rights Newsletter
November 26, 2010 – Issue #593
“I can never fear that things will go far wrong
| USA Warning Labels: Tobacco Warnings Could Trigger First Amendment Lawsuits. Tobacco companies vow to fight warning labels. When the U.S. Health and Human Services Department announced last week its proposal to include grim images on all cigarette packaging starting October 2012, the regulations unleashed a flurry of speculation as to whether such images would infringe on First Amendment rights, Advertising Age reports. “It’s not surprising the FDA would do something like this,” said David L. Hudson, a scholar at the First Amendment Center. “The FDA has had many First Amendment issues and now they’re taking it to another level with these images. First Amendment rights have been flagrantly infringed upon in this area for some time. I think there’s been a movement afoot to have people think that there’s a tobacco advertising exception to the First Amendment. There isn’t, and there shouldn’t be. It’s not illegal to smoke in this country.”
Greece: Government Rethinks Smoking Ban. Facing harsh reactions by bar, cafe and restaurant owners, the Greek government is preparing to do a partial about-face on the anti-smoking law. The law went into effect in September and has gone largely unobserved. General Secretary of the Health Ministry Antonis Dimopoulos spoke with the press agency ANA. He stated that the government is considering modifications to the law because: “we cannot ignore reality” at a time of great economic difficulties.
Scotland: Articles: Out in the cold: more elderly residential homes go non-smoking – Summary dismissal for e-cig use – The debate is over, is it? – Former MSP attacks ASH Scotland – Scottish blogging: Political Innovation event … interesting views on press control by established interests – Health chiefs plead retention of tobacco display ban – World ban on tobacco ingredients threatens livelihoods – Serbia introduces severe ban in educational establishments but a relatively lenient ban in bars – ASH Scotland’s new nonsense on smoking costs up.
UK: Sir Winston Churchill’s great-grandaughter donates humidor full of Havanas for charity on his 136th birthday.
UK: Issues and experiences of UK Customs and Smoking Ban. Guide to buying your tobacco/cigarettes in the EU.
CA: L.A. Considers Extremist Outdoor Ban. By Michael J. McFadden. It was a dark and stormy night on the streets of Los Angeles. The pushers and hookers were hard at work, honestly plying their trades while the muggers relieved their potential customers of excess cash and the bikers tossed beer bottles at passersby in between dodging drive-by shootings.
CA: Tobacco Misinformation Runs Amok in San Jose. “First of all, there’s no such thing as a strictly ‘tobacco related disease.’ Secondly, obesity is the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S., not tobacco, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” McCalla said that claims made by the San Jose city staff that a licensing program for tobacco products and hiding all tobacco products from public view would help prevent underage smoking are “beyond reason.”
SD: Ventilate, filtrate smoke. By Thomas W. Laprade. There never has been a single study showing that exposure to the low levels of smoke found in bars and restaurants with decent modern ventilation and filtration systems kills or harms anyone.
Also read: “Lawmaker Doesn’t Anticipate Ban Loopholes” and comment by Bill Brown.
USA: FREE Book: In Defense of Smokers. By Lauren A. Colby.
USA: Happy Thanksgiving! Our card to share with you.
TSA More Outrages from Airport Security. Even a casual inspection of TSA procedures shows they are a lousy way to enhance airline security, according to Eland. Those methods target the modus operandi of previous terrorist attempts (as if potential attackers wouldn’t adapt to new security measures), they inconvenience and humiliate ordinary travelers, and they violate the Fourth Amendment prohibition against unreasonable searches. Vigilant airline passengers provide better security than do overbearing government bureaucracies, Eland concludes.