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Vaping

Consumer Choice Centre warns against hasty vaping ban

A group that advocates on behalf of consumers in Canada and the U.S. is warning legislators not to be too hasty banning vaping.

The Consumer Choice Center is responding to the growing list of illnesses, including a case in London where a teen suffered a severe respiratory disease that health officials believe is associated with vaping.

The unnamed teen has recovered, but CEO and Medical Officer of Health at the Middlesex London Health Unit Dr. Christopher Mackie said the youth had “no other health issues, whatsoever.”

In the U.S., 380 illnesses, including seven deaths, have been recorded. The Consumer Choice Center is warning politicians not to act hastily.

“The cause of the person’s illness should definitely be investigated. However, it would be misguided for legislators to over-react and fail to embrace harm reduction in public policy decisions,” said David Clement, the North American affairs manager.

On Wednesday, Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott announced she had instructed hospitals to share information on possible vaping illnesses with the province’s Chief Medical Officer of Health.

“In light of growing evidence, I have become increasingly concerned about the prevalence and possible health consequences of vaping, particularly as they affect our youth,” said Elliott.

She did not say if the province will move, as other jurisdictions have, to ban flavoured vaping products citing a lack of sufficient data.

“Our worry is that Canadian regulators will overzealously respond to this case by proposing heavy-handed regulations like has been done in the United States,” continued Clement in a release. “Heavy-handed bans and restrictions will discourage smokers from leaving cigarettes behind, which is the opposite of what public health officials are trying to accomplish.”

The CCC also released a list of what it calls myths about vaping. It said vaping is not more harmful than smoking, citing statistics from groups like Public Health England who say it is 95 percent less damaging compared to smoking. It also said restricting vaping flavours will not curb use by minors.

This article was originally published on BlackburnNews.


The Consumer Choice Center is the consumer advocacy group supporting lifestyle freedom, innovation, privacy, science, and consumer choice. The main policy areas we focus on are digital, mobility, lifestyle & consumer goods, and health & science.

The CCC represents consumers in over 100 countries across the globe. We closely monitor regulatory trends in Ottawa, Washington, Brussels, Geneva and other hotspots of regulation and inform and activate consumers to fight for #ConsumerChoice. Learn more at consumerchoicecenter.org.

Politicians are scapegoating e-cigs for harm they haven’t done

When there’s an outbreak of deaths or illnesses from injected street drugs, do public health authorities demand diabetics and doctors stop using syringes? Of course not. Yet a host of public officials — from President Trump to Gov. Andrew Cuomo to members of the Squad — are taking just that sort of approach in responding to the spate of vaping-related illnesses and deaths around the country.

Cuomo, for example, went on a tear Sunday about vaping, calling it “a burgeoning health crisis” and threatening to declare an emergency to ban flavored nicotine e-cigarettes. That followed Trump’s announcement last Wednesday of federal plans to prohibit such devices.

The dramatic sudden outbursts of concern come after six deaths and 380 severe acute pulmonary illnesses, including at least 41 in New York. The cases were linked not to nicotine e-cigarettes but to vaping THC, the active ingredient in cannabis.

E-cigarettes like Juul are intended to be used to inhale nicotine, but other types of vaping devices can also deliver cannabis-derived substances such as butane hash oils, known as “dabs.”

Scientists at New York’s Department of Health have led the way in pointing the finger at black-market THC-containing liquids, finding “very high levels of vitamin E acetate in nearly all cannabis-containing samples analyzed” in their investigation.

State laboratory test results found that “at least one vitamin E acetate-containing vape product has been linked to each patient who submitted a product for testing.” Vitamin E acetate is an oily substance used to thicken cannabis-derived vaping liquids.

Vaping devices, including e-cigarette hardware, are simply devices for delivering an aerosolized solution. Nicotine e-cigarettes, which serve as a substitute for deadly cigarettes that burn tobacco, typically contain a solution of nicotine, flavorings and vegetable glycerin or propylene glycol.

Globally, tens of millions of people have used billions of e-cigarettes without any acute ill effects. In fact, the US Food and Drug Administration has told state health officials that lab testing of unused legal nicotine vape products of the type obtained from sick patients (who likely also used an illegal THC oil) found no contaminants or ingredients suspected of causing illness.

It’s a very different story when a vaporizer is used to deliver black-market street drugs like the cannabis-derived oils that are being dangerously adulterated with vitamin E acetate.

In announcing the planned federal ban on flavored e-cigarettes in the midst of the outbreak of lung disease, Trump is being misled. Vaping nicotine is an approach to harm-reduction, and appealing non-tobacco flavors are critical to reduce the likelihood that adults will revert to smoking cigarettes.

Exposure to nicotine is not healthy, to be sure, and kids should not vape (unless they already smoke cigarettes and want to transition to a less harmful alternative). But prohibition seldom works, and data from the FDA indicate that while vaping in teens is up, cigarette smoking has fallen to historic lows.

Still, elected officials continue their attack on e-cigarettes, recommending that nearly everyone stop vaping immediately.

That might seem like an abundance of caution, but it’s really an abundance of chicanery. Linking acute lung disease to e-cigarettes is no more logical than warning people about the dangers of vaccination because vaccines are delivered through a needle, and people can get hepatitis from dirty needles.

Expansive warnings to stop vaping altogether, instead of to avoid illicit contaminated THC products, are like advising ex-smokers who have switched to vaping to return to smoking cigarettes. That puts vapers’ lives at risk.

What we need is aggressive state, local and federal enforcement against teen vaping and Drug Enforcement Administration action against illegal THC vapes that cause lung disease.

Meanwhile, why are politicians and public health officials behaving so badly? We have a hypothesis: Until now, the most prominent allegations of serious health effects (even for adults) from e-cigarettes were hypotheticals — such as that vaping would be a “gateway” to cigarette smoking — that have failed to materialize.

In fact, teen cigarette-smoking has been declining. Now, with reports of verifiable acute illnesses and even deaths, politicians are brazenly attempting to indict nicotine vaping, even though their case against the practice is without merit.

In a reckless attempt to redeem their credibility in their war on e-cigarettes, they’ve doubled down on misinformation, disingenuously implying that cannabis-derived oils, home-brewed THC vapes and unadulterated nicotine-containing e-cigarettes all pose the same risks.

They think they can get away with it because … well, virtually nobody has challenged them. It’s time more people did.

Henry Miller is a Pacific Research Institute senior fellow and the founding director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Biotechnology. Jeff Stier is a Consumer Choice Center senior fellow.

Originally published here

Politicians are scapegoating e-cigs for harm they haven’t done

When there’s an outbreak of deaths or illnesses from injected street drugs, do public health authorities demand diabetics and doctors stop using syringes? Of course not. Yet a host of public officials — from President Trump to Gov. Andrew Cuomo to members of the Squad — are taking just that sort of approach in responding to the spate of vaping-related illnesses and deaths around the country.

Cuomo, for example, went on a tear Sunday about vaping, calling it “a burgeoning health crisis” and threatening to declare an emergency to ban flavored nicotine e-cigarettes. That followed Trump’s announcement last Wednesday of federal plans to prohibit such devices.

The dramatic sudden outbursts of concern come after six deaths and 380 severe acute pulmonary illnesses, including at least 41 in New York. The cases were linked not to nicotine e-cigarettes but to vaping THC, the active ingredient in cannabis.

E-cigarettes like Juul are intended to be used to inhale nicotine, but other types of vaping devices can also deliver cannabis-derived substances such as butane hash oils, known as “dabs.”

Scientists at New York’s Department of Health have led the way in pointing the finger at black-market THC-containing liquids, finding “very high levels of vitamin E acetate in nearly all cannabis-containing samples analyzed” in their investigation.

State laboratory test results found that “at least one vitamin E acetate-containing vape product has been linked to each patient who submitted a product for testing.” Vitamin E acetate is an oily substance used to thicken cannabis-derived vaping liquids.

Vaping devices, including e-cigarette hardware, are simply devices for delivering an aerosolized solution. Nicotine e-cigarettes, which serve as a substitute for deadly cigarettes that burn tobacco, typically contain a solution of nicotine, flavorings and vegetable glycerin or propylene glycol.

Globally, tens of millions of people have used billions of e-cigarettes without any acute ill effects. In fact, the US Food and Drug Administration has told state health officials that lab testing of unused legal nicotine vape products of the type obtained from sick patients (who likely also used an illegal THC oil) found no contaminants or ingredients suspected of causing illness.

It’s a very different story when a vaporizer is used to deliver black-market street drugs like the cannabis-derived oils that are being dangerously adulterated with vitamin E acetate.

In announcing the planned federal ban on flavored e-cigarettes in the midst of the outbreak of lung disease, Trump is being misled. Vaping nicotine is an approach to harm-reduction, and appealing non-tobacco flavors are critical to reduce the likelihood that adults will revert to smoking cigarettes.

Exposure to nicotine is not healthy, to be sure, and kids should not vape (unless they already smoke cigarettes and want to transition to a less harmful alternative). But prohibition seldom works, and data from the FDA indicate that while vaping in teens is up, cigarette smoking has fallen to historic lows.

Still, elected officials continue their attack on e-cigarettes, recommending that nearly everyone stop vaping immediately.

That might seem like an abundance of caution, but it’s really an abundance of chicanery. Linking acute lung disease to e-cigarettes is no more logical than warning people about the dangers of vaccination because vaccines are delivered through a needle, and people can get hepatitis from dirty needles.

Expansive warnings to stop vaping altogether, instead of to avoid illicit contaminated THC products, are like advising ex-smokers who have switched to vaping to return to smoking cigarettes. That puts vapers’ lives at risk.

What we need is aggressive state, local and federal enforcement against teen vaping and Drug Enforcement Administration action against illegal THC vapes that cause lung disease.

Meanwhile, why are politicians and public health officials behaving so badly? We have a hypothesis: Until now, the most prominent allegations of serious health effects (even for adults) from e-cigarettes were hypotheticals — such as that vaping would be a “gateway” to cigarette smoking — that have failed to materialize.

In fact, teen cigarette-smoking has been declining. Now, with reports of verifiable acute illnesses and even deaths, politicians are brazenly attempting to indict nicotine vaping, even though their case against the practice is without merit.

In a reckless attempt to redeem their credibility in their war on e-cigarettes, they’ve doubled down on misinformation, disingenuously implying that cannabis-derived oils, home-brewed THC vapes and unadulterated nicotine-containing e-cigarettes all pose the same risks.

They think they can get away with it because … well, virtually nobody has challenged them. It’s time more people did.

Henry Miller is a Pacific Research Institute senior fellow and the founding director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Biotechnology. Jeff Stier is a Consumer Choice Center senior fellow.

Trump’s proposed ban on vape flavors may not stop teens from vaping, experts warn

“Are we not to learn anything from the current THC hash oil acute lung illness situation?”  asked Jeff Stier, a senior fellow and tobacco harm reduction advocate at the free market Consumer Choice Center. “We don’t want consumers adding stuff to their e-cigs. And we don’t want more sophisticated black-market folks doing it.”

Read more here

Federal e-cigarette removal proposal brings cautious celebration, warnings of overreach

Some free-market advocates say they believe Trump is overreacting to the vaping and lung illness connection.

“Trump needs to know the fact that adult smokers are switching en masse to these new reduced-risk products and they’ve been proven to be 95% less harmful than traditional cigarettes,” said Yaël Ossowski, the deputy director of the Consumer Choice Center.

“These individuals switch in part due to vaping flavors, and that should be kept in mind.

“We should not use isolated cases caused by illegal products to inform public policy on the life-saving capabilities of vaping devices for adults,” Ossowski said. “That is bad science and bad public policy.”

Read more here

Trump Administration Takes Aim at E-Cigarettes

Yaël Ossowski, deputy director of the Consumer Choice Center, said the Trump administration needs to follow the facts.

“The fact is that the technological revolution that is happening today with vaping is giving people a less harmful alternative to consume nicotine, the stimulant alkaloid that smokers are actually addicted to. That’s something to celebrate,” Ossowski said.

“Trump needs to know that, as well as the fact that adult smokers are switching en masse to these new reduced-risk products and they’ve been proven to be 95 percent less harmful than traditional cigarettes. These individuals switch in part due to vaping flavors, and that should be kept in mind. That said, no one wants teens to be vaping, and we should make sure of that,” he said, adding “there is more we can do to stop youth vaping, but we must preserve this technology as a tool for adults to consume their nicotine in a less harmful fashion.”

Read more here

Before President Trump acts on vaping, someone please give him the facts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

CONTACT:
Yaël Ossowski
Deputy Director
Consumer Choice Center
yael@consumerchoicecenter.org

Before Trump acts on vaping, someone please give him the facts

Washington, D.C. –
 According to U.S. health secretary Alex Azar, President Trump convened a policy meeting today to discuss the future of regulations on vaping and e-cigarettes.

Yaël Ossowski, Deputy Director of the Consumer Choice Center, responded by stating that someone must show Trump the facts.

“The fact is that the technological revolution that is happening today with vaping is giving people a less harmful alternative to consume nicotine, the stimulant alkaloid that smokers are actually addicted to. That’s something to celebrate,” said Ossowski.

“Trump needs to know that, as well as the fact that adult smokers are switching en masse to these new reduced-risk products and they’ve been proven to be 95% less harmful than traditional cigarettes. These individuals switch in part due to vaping flavors, and that should be kept in mind.

“That said, no one wants teens to be vaping, and we should make sure of that. The latest CDC figures show that 20.8% of high schoolers have vaped at least once in the last 30 days. But nearly half of those were vaping cannabis rather than nicotine, cartridges often purchased illegally on the black market instead of via established outlets,” said Ossowski.

“We should not use isolated cases caused by illegal products to inform public policy on the life-saving capabilities of vaping devices for adults. That is bad science and bad public policy.

“There is more we can do to stop youth vaping, but we must preserve this technology as a tool for adults to consume their nicotine in a less harmful fashion,” said Ossowski.

A Consumer Choice Center survey from March 2019 found that two-thirds of Americans agree that they should have the freedom of choice to buy e-cigarettes if they believe they are a lower health risk to them than tobacco.

More information on harm reduction is available on our website.

***CCC Deputy Director Yaël Ossowski is available to speak with accredited media on consumer regulations and consumer choice issues. Please send media inquiries HERE.***

The CCC represents consumers in over 100 countries across the globe. We closely monitor regulatory trends in Ottawa, Washington, Brussels, Geneva and other hotspots of regulation and inform and activate consumers to fight for #ConsumerChoice. Learn more at consumerchoicecenter.org.

Vaping Supporters Meet with California Lawmakers About Strict Regulations on Vaping Products

Henry I. Miller, M.S., M.D. and senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute, and Jeff Stier, J.D., a Senior Fellow at the Consumer Choice Center, recently published an article at the Pacific Research Institute concluding the vaping hysteria and disinformation campaign will lead to more tobacco deaths.

Miller and Stier said:

According to a just-released report from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, 7.5 million people 12 years old and older in the U.S. have been diagnosed with dependence or abuse of illicit drugs in the past year. But that’s not stopping e-cigarette opponents from trying to score political points by mischaracterizing the problem by conflating e-cigarettes with street drugs. And health reporters have been all too eager to comply, rather than challenge their assertions. The same with regulators. The FDA calls its irresponsible, unscientific anti-vaping media blitz “The Real Cost Campaign.” We think evaluating the real costs is a good thing. But what are the real costs of misleading people about the risks of e-cigarettes, especially in cases like the Wisconsin cluster?

First, adult smokers will be less likely to switch from smoking to vaping because of an unfounded fear of contracting “serious lung disease.” This alone stinks worse than Wisconsin’s most pungent cheese.

Miller and Stier say the not-so-hidden agenda behind the scare is to fool lawmakers into thinking e-cigarettes are as dangerous or more dangerous than “combustible cigarettes,” causing them to regulate these lower-risk alternatives inappropriately. This, too, will prevent smokers from quitting.

Read more here

Vaping Hysteria Will Mean More Tobacco Deaths

When products could save lives, it’s important for people to be informed about those benefits, along with the risks. Conversely, it’s harmful and immoral to spread misinformation that negatively affects public perception of life-saving products and discourages their use. Consider, for example, the unscientific, ideology-driven campaign against e-cigarettes, which deliver nicotine through vapor rather than smoke.

There is overwhelming scientific evidence that it’s best to quit nicotine use entirely. And kids shouldn’t vape. But some 34 million adults still smoke in the U.S., so we must offer them more-appealing, lower-risk alternatives than currently available pharmaceutical products which are largely ineffective. 

Switching from cigarettes to e-cigarettes causes a significant reduction in risk, in the range of 95%, according to Public Health England. Former FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb properly emphasized that “the overwhelming amount of death and disease attributable to tobacco is caused by addiction to cigarettes — the only legal consumer product that, when used as intended, will kill half of all long-term users.” 

And yet we are seeing a virtual war on vaping products, including San Francisco’s outright ban on e-cigarettes (but, incredibly, not on tobacco-containing cigarettes); Vermont’s new 92% tax on e-cigarettes; and the FDA’s barrage of taxpayer-funded TV ads that emphasize the addictive properties of nicotine in e-cigarettes — which are primarily nicotine-delivery devices — while failing to mention that they don’t contain the tars, smoke, or other lethal combustion products from burning tobacco. 

Such analysis is the essence of comparative risk-assessment — taking into consideration not only a given intervention, but the alternatives. For example, many chemotherapeutic drugs for cancer are toxic and have serious side effects, but they are acceptable to patients and regulators if the alternative is an early death. 

The most recent and alarming phenomenon is allegations that “vaping” is causing serious lung disease in teens. News reports detail the illness and quickly pivot to quotes from anti-e-cigarette activists about the dangers of nicotine e-cigarettes such as Juul. 

However, many, if not all, of the people who have become ill with “serious lung disease” are using illicit drugs with a vaporizer. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, in their four-patient cluster, who are hospitalized at Children’s Minnesota Hospital, “use of both nicotine and marijuana-based products were reported.”

Thus, it appears that these illnesses have nothing to do with vaping nicotine, other than the fact that many users of illicit drugs (that are often contaminated with toxic psychoactive substances) also use vaporizers. Another example is that, reportedly, all of the dozen cases in Wisconsin of patients hospitalized with severe pulmonary injuries were reportedly “dabbing” — vaping THC (tetrohydrocanninoid) oil, which is derived from marijuana, and the purity of which is uncertain.  

Blaming E-Cigarettes For Street Drugs’ Harm

Kids shouldn’t vape. But there is no evidence that the use of unadulterated commercial products that deliver nicotine is responsible for the spate of recently reported serious acute health effects.

If the illnesses had been related to the most widely used nicotine contained in e-cigarettes, we’d expect to see a relatively even geographical distribution of effects, especially since products like Juul are standardized and subjected to audited quality control lab testing. But we’re not seeing that.

Instead, we’re seeing clusters, which suggests that any genuine incidents are related to contaminated batches of street drugs — which are widely consumed via vaporizers. According to a just-released report from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, 7.5 million people 12 years old and older in the U.S. have been diagnosed with dependence or abuse of illicit drugs in the past year

But that’s not stopping e-cigarette opponents from trying to score political points by mischaracterizing the problem by conflating e-cigarettes with street drugs. And health reporters have been all too eager to comply, rather than challenge their assertions. The same with regulators.

The FDA calls its irresponsible, unscientific anti-vaping media blitz “The Real Cost Campaign.” We think evaluating the real costs is a good thing. But what are the real costs of misleading people about the risks of e-cigarettes, especially in cases like the Wisconsin cluster? 

First, adult smokers will be less likely to switch from smoking to vaping because of an unfounded fear of contracting “serious lung disease.” This alone stinks worse than Wisconsin’s most pungent cheese.

The not-so-hidden agenda behind the scare is to fool lawmakers into thinking e-cigarettes are as dangerous (or even more dangerous) than cigarettes, causing them to regulate these lower-risk alternatives inappropriately. This, too, will prevent smokers from quitting.

And finally, by attacking the e-cigarette bogeyman with malicious innuendo or outright lies, we’ll miss the opportunity to address the use of the dangerous street drugs that are actually causing acute illness. Going after standardized nicotine vapes for causing acute lung disease is like O.J. Simpson trying to find the real killer.

Anti-vaping activists regularly dredge up new scares about e-cigarettes, whether it is discredited allegations of popcorn lungheart attacks, or toxic amounts of formaldehyde,   But the people and organizations hyping the exaggerated or imaginary risks are never held accountable. Perhaps that shouldn’t be a surprise, since while everything around us seems to change, there’s one constant in journalism: If it bleeds, it leads. 

Henry I. Miller, a physician and molecular biologist, is a senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute. He was the founding director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Biotechnology. Jeff Stier, J.D., is a Senior Fellow at the Consumer Choice Center.

Read more here

VAPING HYSTERIA WILL MEAN MORE TOBACCO DEATHS

When products could save lives, it’s important for people to be informed about those benefits, along with the risks.

When products could save lives, it’s important for people to be informed about those benefits, along with the risks. Conversely, it’s harmful and immoral to spread misinformation that negatively affects public perception of life-saving products and discourages their use. Consider, for example, the unscientific, ideology-driven campaign against e-cigarettes, which deliver nicotine through vapor rather than smoke.

There is overwhelming scientific evidence that it’s best to quit nicotine use entirely. And kids shouldn’t vape. But some 34 million adults still smoke in the U.S., so we must offer them more-appealing, lower-risk alternatives than currently available pharmaceutical products which are largely ineffective.

Switching from cigarettes to e-cigarettes causes a significant reduction in risk, in the range of 95%, according to Public Health England. Former FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb properly emphasized that “the overwhelming amount of death and disease attributable to tobacco is caused by addiction to cigarettes — the only legal consumer product that, when used as intended, will kill half of all long-term users.”

And yet we are seeing a virtual war on vaping products, including San Francisco’s outright ban on e-cigarettes (but, incredibly, not on tobacco-containing cigarettes); Vermont’s new 92% tax on e-cigarettes; and the FDA’s barrage of taxpayer-funded TV ads that emphasize the addictive properties of nicotine in e-cigarettes — which are primarily nicotine-delivery devices — while failing to mention that they don’t contain the tars, smoke, or other lethal combustion products from burning tobacco.

Such analysis is the essence of comparative risk-assessment — taking into consideration not only a given intervention, but the alternatives. For example, many chemotherapeutic drugs for cancer are toxic and have serious side effects, but they are acceptable to patients and regulators if the alternative is an early death.

The most recent and alarming phenomenon is allegations that “vaping” is causing serious lung disease in teens. News reports detail the illness and quickly pivot to quotes from anti-e-cigarette activists about the dangers of nicotine e-cigarettes such as Juul.

However, many, if not all, of the people who have become ill with “serious lung disease” are using illicit drugs with a vaporizer. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, in their four-patient cluster, who are hospitalized at Children’s Minnesota Hospital, “use of both nicotine and marijuana-based products were reported.”

Thus, it appears that these illnesses have nothing to do with vaping nicotine, other than the fact that many users of illicit drugs (that are often contaminated with toxic psychoactive substances) also use vaporizers. Another example is that, reportedly, all of the dozen cases in Wisconsin of patients hospitalized with severe pulmonary injuries were reportedly “dabbing” — vaping THC (tetrohydrocanninoid) oil, which is derived from marijuana, and the purity of which is uncertain.

Blaming E-Cigarettes For Street Drugs’ Harm

Kids shouldn’t vape. But there is no evidence that the use of unadulterated commercial products that deliver nicotine is responsible for the spate of recently reported serious acute health effects.

If the illnesses had been related to the most widely used nicotine contained in e-cigarettes, we’d expect to see a relatively even geographical distribution of effects, especially since products like Juul are standardized and subjected to audited quality control lab testing. But we’re not seeing that.

Instead, we’re seeing clusters, which suggests that any genuine incidents are related to contaminated batches of street drugs — which are widely consumed via vaporizers. According to a just-released report from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, 7.5 million people 12 years old and older in the U.S. have been diagnosed with dependence or abuse of illicit drugs in the past year.

But that’s not stopping e-cigarette opponents from trying to score political points by mischaracterizing the problem by conflating e-cigarettes with street drugs. And health reporters have been all too eager to comply, rather than challenge their assertions. The same with regulators.

The FDA calls its irresponsible, unscientific anti-vaping media blitz “The Real Cost Campaign.” We think evaluating the real costs is a good thing. But what are the real costs of misleading people about the risks of e-cigarettes, especially in cases like the Wisconsin cluster?

First, adult smokers will be less likely to switch from smoking to vaping because of an unfounded fear of contracting “serious lung disease.” This alone stinks worse than Wisconsin’s most pungent cheese.

The not-so-hidden agenda behind the scare is to fool lawmakers into thinking e-cigarettes are as dangerous (or even more dangerous) than cigarettes, causing them to regulate these lower-risk alternatives inappropriately. This, too, will prevent smokers from quitting.

And finally, by attacking the e-cigarette bogeyman with malicious innuendo or outright lies, we’ll miss the opportunity to address the use of the dangerous street drugs that are actually causing acute illness. Going after standardized nicotine vapes for causing acute lung disease is like O.J. Simpson trying to find the real killer.

Anti-vaping activists regularly dredge up new scares about e-cigarettes, whether it is discredited allegations of popcorn lungheart attacks, or toxic amounts of formaldehyde,   But the people and organizations hyping the exaggerated or imaginary risks are never held accountable. Perhaps that shouldn’t be a surprise, since while everything around us seems to change, there’s one constant in journalism: If it bleeds, it leads.

Read more here

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