Editorial: Secondhand smoke risk is too great for further state delay

Jan 25, 2008 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Fond du Lac Reporter

It's time for a smoke-free workplace. We recognize that, and so should Wisconsin lawmakers. via Fond du Lac Reporter

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1 - 15 of 15 Comments Last updated Jan 26, 2008

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#1
Jan 25, 2008
 
Quitting smoking may be an admirable aim, but driving honest businesses and local governments into financial ruin is an unacceptable method of achieving it.

[1] Illinois State Budget Book. P 82

[2] For more info on Illinois-STAMP see http://www.illinoispolicyinstitute.org/STAMP/...

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#2
Jan 25, 2008
 
Therefore, I regretfully conclude that we still do not know, with accuracy, how much or even whether exposure to environmental tobacco smoke increases the risk of coronary heart disease.

John C. Bailar III, M.D., Ph.D.
University of Chicago
Chicago, IL 60637
http://www.focwebsite.com/news/meta-analysis....

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#3
Jan 25, 2008
 
Smoking is nasty, dirty, anti-social and dangerous if it is done with a high enough level of intake and often enough.

Iím not advocating smoking. What I am saying is that any statement we put out to the public should be based on fact.

The most likely toxic substances are likely to be the aromatic hydrocarbons and the nitrosomenes. These either working alone or in conjunction with any other chemical can cause cancer. For that reason we shouldnít smoke. But to bring up these other substances is nonsense.

One wonders if these health experts whose salary is being paid to protect the public arenít more interested in scaremongering than research for the truth.

You can stop people smoking by education, scaremongering isnít the right way. The general public are intelligent and if you give them the truth they will heed the warnings.

Stop throwing silly names at them to scare them! It doesnít work".
http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/sci_tech/fe...

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#4
Jan 25, 2008
 
Federal Court Rejects
EPA Secondhand Smoke Study
Decision has far-reaching implications
In one of the most embarrassing setbacks for EPA in recent memory, a federal judge has thrown out the agency's landmark 1993 risk assessment linking secondhand smoke to cancer.
The ruling, handed down July 17, invalidated EPA research linking exposure to secondhand smoke, also known as environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), to 3,000 cancer deaths each year. The agency's ETS risk assessment was subsequently challenged by tobacco industry officials who feared--quite rightly, as it turned out--that the agency's findings would be used to justify smoking bans in public places. Tobacco companies argued that EPA cherry-picked data and ignored standard scientific and statistical practices to reach its conclusions, an opinion shared by a large number of independent scientists.
The new court ruling could have a profound effect on the risk assessments and other scientific reviews periodically released by the federal government. If allowed to stand, the decision will establish a precedent that risk assessments are subject to judicial review in instances where they have a regulatory impact. That prospect is nothing short of a nightmare for federal agencies unaccustomed to seeing their scientific pronouncements challenged in court.
In his blistering 92-page decision, Judge William Osteen of the Middle District of North Carolina essentially vindicated those who had accused EPA of manipulating data in order to reach a preconceived conclusion. Osteen ruled that EPA had violated provisions of the 1986 Radon Gas and Indoor Air Quality Act, under which the agency determined that exposure to ETS is hazardous.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#5
Jan 25, 2008
 
"EPA publicly committed to a conclusion before research had begun; excluded industry by violating the Act's procedural requirements; adjusted established procedure and established scientific norms to validate the Agency's public conclusion; and aggressively utilized the Act's authority to disseminate findings to establish a de facto regulatory scheme intended to restrict Plaintiff's products and to influence public opinion," Osteen wrote.
Among other things, the Act requires that a broad-based, stakeholder advisory panel--one that includes the participation of affected industries--be convened to review the findings of EPA research alleging a substance is dangerous to human health. Judge Osteen noted, however, that the tobacco industry had been excluded from the secondhand smoke panel.
"Findings Based on Selective Information"
Osteen added that EPA's findings were based on insufficiently rigorous statistical tests and were therefore invalid. EPA, he noted, "disregarded information and made findings based on selective information ... ; deviated from its risk assessment guidelines; failed to disclose important [opposition] findings and reasoning; and left significant questions without answers."
Osteen's ruling isn't expected to have much impact on smoking bans already in place.(Some California communities might be an exception, where bans on smoking in bars are immensely unpopular with patrons and owners.) But the ruling is certain to discourage lawsuits aimed at recovering damages for people claiming to have been harmed by exposure to ETS. Plaintiffs will no longer be able to cite EPA's now-discredited risk assessment to buttress their claims.
No Choice but to Appeal
Although legal observers agree Osteen's ruling is likely to be upheld by a higher court, EPA has little choice but to appeal. Risk assessments are the foundation of the agency's regulatory action. To have one of its high-profile risk assessments invalidated by a federal judge for violating standard scientific and statistical practices is nothing short of an humiliation for EPA. It raises serious questions about the science underlying other EPA regulatory decisions, including last year's controversial decision to tighten standards for particulate matter and ground-level ozone. That action is also being challenged in court, with a ruling expected in the next twelve months.
http://www.heartland.org/archives/environment...
Kent

Hagerstown, MD

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#6
Jan 25, 2008
 
Wisconsin is very fortunate to have leaders, from both parties in the Senate and Assembly who are standing in the way of passage of this assault on personal liberty and human dignity.

“Just Say No to Smoking Bans”

Since: Jul 07

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#7
Jan 25, 2008
 
Some are quick to point out that Judge Osteen's decision was "overturned"
without explaining that the case was disallowed because it should have been
heard in a lower court. Judge Osteen's findings and comments were not
rendered invalid by the technical dismissal of the hearing.
David

Canmer, KY

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#8
Jan 25, 2008
 
I think it is great to outlaw smoking in public places. There can be no rights of smokers to blow their poison in the air. We have learned enough about smoking that it should be banned everywhere except maybe outdoors. You know what got me to quit smoking - when I went to the doctor and they found a spot on one of my lungs. Luckily, it wasn't cancer but a close call. Stop smoking and save your health and everyone else's around you, and go buy a new car with what you are now wasting on cigarettes. Hey, that would also help this ailing economy...

“12oz libertarian”

Since: Dec 07

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#9
Jan 25, 2008
 
Interesting.
Follow the link to the original 'editorial' in the Green Bay Gazette.....
A concerned citizen?
Nope, this ad was brought to you by.....the ACS.
just candid

AOL

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#10
Jan 25, 2008
 
In todays world smoking is only done by the backward and slow to learn. Smoking is not something that is done by people who care for themselves,or others around them. It's also very evident that non smokers are becomining more adamant in their oposition to any smoking in areas open to the public.

“12oz libertarian”

Since: Dec 07

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#11
Jan 25, 2008
 
just candid wrote:
It's also very evident that non smokers are becomining more adamant in their oposition to any smoking in areas open to the public.
I'm so sorry Ms. Candid.
This is not a concerned non smoker voicing their opinion in a published editorial. The original document (Green Bay Gazette) crediteds not a person's name.
Direct quote...."Source, American Cancer Society".
It is little more than an advertisement..

“12oz libertarian”

Since: Dec 07

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#12
Jan 25, 2008
 
http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/apps/pbcs...

Whoever wrote these words, was paid to do so...
Al Smokhommond Jazzeri

United States

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#14
Jan 26, 2008
 
just candid wrote:
In todays world smoking is only done by the backward and slow to learn. Smoking is not something that is done by people who care for themselves,or others around them. It's also very evident that non smokers are becomining more adamant in their oposition to any smoking in areas open to the public.
If this statement is true ? You should be a 4 pack a day person.
Al Smokhommond Jazzeri

United States

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#15
Jan 26, 2008
 
They should put Chantix in the water supply and see who survives.

“12oz libertarian”

Since: Dec 07

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#16
Jan 26, 2008
 
ďSecond hand smoke is an amazing story. The short version is: the EPA investigated it in 1992 and was not able to demonstrate that there was a carcinogenic effect. By Ďnot able to demonstrateí, it means, according to EPA guidelines you have to have 95% confidence intervals. It has to be statistically strong evidence, they couldnít get it. They did 6 studies, they combined all the studies, they still couldnít get it. They dropped it (confidence intervals) to 90%. 90% means it may, or may not be there. You want 95% or even 99%, they didnít have it.
They nevertheless classified it as a Class A Carcinogen.
California was the 1st state to pass second hand smoke ordinances. All of which Iím in favor of. I donít like people smoking next to me, i donít feel good in places like Germany or France where they smoke right next to you. I donít want people to smoke, smoking causes cancer.
But, second hand smoke does NOT cause cancer.
Part of how i got to it was: My daughter and her friends were going down the street pulling their shirts up over their mouths as they passed some poor schlump out smoking a cigarette.
*laughter*
In 1998 a federal judge said to the EPA you canít do this. You havenít made the case, youíve broken your own guidelines, this is not demonstrated.
It has never been demonstrated.
Believe me, there are physicians and groups that are dying to show it, and it has never been brought to a level of significance. It may have other effects, itís certainly unpleasant but..

Iím opposed to passing laws based on phony science, I think itís a bad precedent.

Michael Crichton MD (1969 Harvard Medical School) on second hand smoke 3/16/2005.
http://www.youtube.com/watch...

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