Boy, this post is going to catch a lot of flak, but after 3 plus years of research on the subject, the story needs to be told.If you are looking for one, take a look over our reviews and find the best e cigarette for you.
Smoking & Cessation Industry
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To put it in plain English, they are messing up their advisory committee’s paydays. Yes, you read that correctly. The majority of the members that have the final say on e cigarettes get paid big bucks to speak at Pharmaceutical company events, are professors at major universities that are funded by companies like GlaxoSmithKline, Abbott Laboratories, Merck & Co. and Bristol-Myers Squibb.
UPDATE: GlaxoSmithKline just had court, they are now a company with felony charges for bribing their way to the top, they got caught and basically the same government that took the bribes accepted a payoff to the tune of 3 Billion Dollars! But there is more down the page, but just wanted to show the naysayers that denial is not a river in Egypt before they start talking about conspiracy theories when I deal in conspiracy facts. They had almost 50 k “doctors” doing their bidding, as I expose later on.
Each of these companies has a major stake in the smoking cessation market to the tune of 2.3 billion dollars per year in the United States each year. This does not cover international markets that are growing each year by leaps and bounds. That is a lot of potential revenue losses. We tell you further below how that is really chump change to what they really stand to lose if e cigarettes remain on the market.
If you do not believe that the major pharmaceutical companies do not have a hand in the attack on the e cigarette, you need to read the following information.
The Smokeless States Program Was A Scandal
The SmokeLess States Program
National Tobacco Policy Initiative, one of the largest investments made by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, with $99 million authorized in grants since 1992. Primarily, grants were awarded to non-governmental organizations, with the intention that they would educate the public and policy-makers about the tobacco problem.
Two features about the program are significant: (1) the Foundation encouraged its grantees to be activists, (2) advocacy was emphasized to bring about policy change. The program relied heavily on three major health voluntary organizations: the American Cancer Society; the American Heart Association, and the American Lung Association.
They provided financial support and, in particular, funds to help lobbying efforts which the Foundation could not support directly. In addition to insight on the effects of advocacy, this chapter offers a window into the role of coalitions in bringing about social change.
Was there any opposition?
Below is what Bill Godshall, Executive Director of Smokefree Pennsylvania and an advocate of harm reduction products had to say about this program.
I encouraged RJWF to fund what became known as Smokeless States, submitted a grant application for Pennsylvania to the RWJF Smokeless States in 1994 (which was rejected), and had many public policy alliances and battles with various RWJF Smokeless States grantees, including nasty coalition and public policy battles with the Pennsylvania ACS, AHA, ALA.
Basically, the RWJF awarded the overall grant to the American Medical Association (which had never done anything to reduce smoking), which then issued RFA’s for each of the 50 states (stating they would only award one grant per state).
After I submitted a grant on behalf of the existing PA coalition (where I had long served as policy committee chair and organizer), the PA ACS, ALA and AHA (who wanted the RWJF money for themselves) abruptly quit our state coalition, and then submitted their own competitive grant application to RWJF. RWJF responded by rejecting both of our competing grant applications, and told us to coalesce and submit a joint application. But after the PA ACS, AHA, ALA refused to do so (i.e. collaborate with me or the coalition), RWJF-AMA then violated its own policy and subsequently gave the grant to ACS, AHA, ALA.
When the Smokeless States grants ended (it ran from 1994 to about 2004), nearly all of the money had been given to State affiliates of ACS, AHA, ALA (which partnered with CTFK, which had also received another multimillion dollar grant from RWJF). Basically, RWJF helped create (with its millions of dollars) the existing CTFK, ACS, AHA, ALA partnership (and the AMA too sometimes on national policy issues), whereby CTFK determines their policies at the national level, and the ACS, AHA, ALA advocate them at the state and local levels.
That’s also why CTFK, ACS, AHA, ALA, AMA all joined forces to lobby for the FSPTCA legislation (that authorized FDA to regulate tobacco), to falsely claim that drug industry products are the most effective way to quit smoking and lobby for government and healthcare insurance subsidization of drug industry products, and why CTFK, ACS, AHA, ALA, AMA all oppose smokeless tobacco, dissolvable nicotine products, and e-cigarettes (because they compete against drug industry products).
Since RWJF is the largest shareholder of Johnson & Johnson stock, its ultimate goal was to give J&J (and other drug companies) control of the nicotine markets and to take it away from tobacco companies.
That’s pretty convincing information and outright admission of guilt that they intend to sway public opinion and creating social change. Policy change based on the “authority” status of some of the most influential people in the medical field including doctors, lawyers, social scientist and media professionals. The sickening part is that their hands were not directly tied to anything that was done, giving them plausible deny ability in the public eye until this information was uncovered, but then ignored by the media that helped to push their cause. This was probably because they had spent millions and millions on media.
If you visit the website, you actually have to pay to get the information that follows. It was a blueprint that was followed meticulously and was very effective in making nicotine a monopoly for the pharmaceutical industry and putting Big Tobacco on the ropes…or did it? We will get to that a little later.
The entire program was heavily monitored to make sure no laws were broken when it comes to lobbying and there were some close calls once the media campaign started. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation received a letter from Covington & Burling, a well known Washington, D.C., law firm that represented tobacco companies. The following was an excerpt from that letter.
Given the sponsors, the context and the timing of the proposed media campaign, there is at the very least a substantial risk that the campaign will fail to qualify as an “educational” activity, or as “nonpartisan analysis, study, or research,” within the meaning of the relevant statutes and Treasury regulations.
This, obviously, could have adverse tax consequences for the foundation. More to the point, our clients and we would strenuously object to any use of private foundation funds to support what can fairly be viewed here as a lobbying effort, either expressed or implied.
This would adversely affect the interests of our clients, and it would also be contrary to the public policies reflected in the Internal Revenue Code restrictions on the use of tax-deductible funds for legislative activity.
The next letter was from a congressman who represented a tobacco farming state. It was copies of letters to the IRS asking for investigation of the Robert Woods Foundation. This came to nothing as the IRS never decided to investigate despite a congressman pushing the issue.
Over the years there has been major change in public policy concerning tobacco. Science has now shown that smoking tobacco is hazardous and that that burning and inhaling tobacco smoke is the killer of smoking, not the nicotine. Now all of the grant winners have people they trained on the advisory boards of the FDA.
The Real Goal Of The FSPTC Act of 2009 Was…
Fast forward to 2009: Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act
As Bill Godshall stated, the real goal was the monopoly of nicotine and they almost got what they wanted, but why did they fall short with so much work and funding? I believe the answer is obvious if you consider the following. The “Act” prevents the FDA from banning cigarettes and smokeless tobacco and cannot make them reduce the amount of nicotine to zero.
It should also be stated that Philip Morris and Big Pharma wrote the bill together. They eliminated flavors and even put menthol on the table.
Was it a compromise? Was it planned so that they could “regulate” other competition out of business? I believe it was the later because clove cigarettes went away as soon as it passed. There goes one company, now the FDA is considering the removal of menthol. Lorillard, the maker of Newport cigarettes derives almost 90% of their revenues from Newport Menthol cigarettes.
E Cigarettes Are The Only Way Forward For Lorillard
They are extremely popular on the east coast and are going to go the way of the dinosaurs if they do not do something fast. They (Lorillard) recently bought the Blu Cigs electronic cigarette brand for 135 million and are trying to get in the smokeless market. Now we have two major brands and companies soon to go or have gone away. But, don’t worry; the largest of Big Tobacco is here to stay. Why you ask? Let’s go ahead and delve into this a bit.
I believe the reason was so that Big Pharma and really Big Tobacco wanted to eliminate competition for both of their markets. Philip Morris ( and maybe R.J. Reynolds) wanted to get rid of their competition, but it is absolutely a surety that Big Pharma did not want to get rid of Big Tobacco. It is simple. They would kill the goose that laid the golden egg. Remember that the smoking cessation market is a 2.3 billion dollar market in the U.S. alone, but that is chump change.
The CDC states that the estimated health care cost for smokers annually is just shy of 200 Billion per year. Who sells the drugs for them? Who supplies the equipment and supplies to medical facilities? Big Pharma. There is a lot of money on the table that big pharma loses if the e cigarette wins. Most studies, test and trials on e cigs to date put the quite rate between 20% and 60%, compared to the 5% or LESS that smoking cessation products by big pharma. It’s like they don’t really want smokers quitting at all!
Why would you crush the goose if it was laying golden eggs? I think not! I believe it was a very calculated and concise move to drop out all competition.
The Huffington Post stated the following:
Supporters of the FDA bill cited figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that smokers cost the country $96 billion a year in direct health care costs, and an additional $97 billion a year in lost productivity.
Now we are at 200 billion a year in lost revenues for major pharmaceutical companies and there is still more money on the table.
Let us consider another issue that we have not covered as of yet. Governments make billions of dollars each year in tax revenues. The government now makes around $1.01 per pack of cigarettes sold in the U.S. (as of 2011, $1.01 in tobacco tax alone) This does not count state, county and local sales taxes collected on tobacco sales across the country. New York City currently has the highest tax, at a combined $6.46 for just the state and local rate, plus the $1.01 federal excise tax.
Now we add electronic cigarettes into the equation and we complicate the issue a little more. This is why the FDA wanted to classify the e cigarette as a drug delivery device, but failed in a federal court.
Of the 18 studies I have read, somewhere between 20% and 60% of people who switch to the e cigarette quit smoking. This means Big Pharma and Big Tobacco stand to lose 20 to 60% of their market if they stay on the market. I am sure politicians are shaking in their shoes also for fear of loss of tax revenues.
Now they are faced with a “deeming action” that could (and probably will) effectively ban them if they are sold with nicotine. Although the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act allows for harm reduction, it cost over 10 million dollars to get through this approval process, making it almost impossible to meet the requirements and the main reason Lorillard bought Blu Cigs out. They are the only current hope for e cigarettes with nicotine to remain on the market as far as I can see. But, there is hope for the industry even without it.
I have several friends in the e cigarette business and have been told that millions and millions of e cigarettes without nicotine are being shipped to both Canada and Australia because of the demand. Then, you will have overseas companies selling the nicotine online and shipping it to the U.S. directly to users.
This will create another black market of nicotine that could be less than safe and cause untold damage and a potential ban of the product even without nicotine. I believe the last part is unlikely, but none the less possible.