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I Finally Started Smoking and I'm so happy about that, says Jeff Berwick

Hello from beautiful Acapulco,

Everyone has there place and this is truly mine. I was just walking down the street with a glass of wine, smoking a cigarette and... well, actually I should mention something about that.

I finally started smoking! I'm so happy about that. I tried when I was younger but when I was in my teens and twenties I was not in very good health. As I just mentioned, everyone has their place, and when I am here... with the sun, every day of the year, it builds up your immune system immeasurably. When I lived in northern Canada, the sun was always this little white light in the distant horizon for most of the year. It'd peer down to me as though to say, "What are you doing living here?" And that's if you could even see it at all, through the clouds, rain, snow and hail. I was almost constantly sick. Even when I visit, I look around and everyone is a grey color. Here, with the sun and all the locally grown, mostly organic produce and meat, it is almost impossible to get sick. I think the last time I heard someone even cough here was never.

So, I just couldn't start smoking while I lived there. Even one cigarette felt like it was going to kill me. I've since experimented with electronic cigarettes and snus. Both had their moments but I felt like I was missing out. Smoking, of almost all activities, is hardwired into us from thousands and thousands of years of practice. I wanted to participate in that tradition. But, something has happened of late, a switch just clicked and now I am nearly a full smoker. I only tend to smoke when I drink... but that is nearly all the time anyway, so I'm good.

One of the funnest parts has been collecting all the government mandated scare propaganda on each pack. Here's just one hilarious one, just for your entertainment.


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Wow, why didn't I think of that!

"he uses research papers to reason that smoking promotes the formation of a thin mucous layer in the lungs, “which forms a protective layer stopping any cancer-carrying particles from entering the lung tissue.” I have some catching up to do, maybe I'll just mix up some mustard gas to make up for lost time. Or if that doesn't work, I'll just take a couple rips from a bus tail pipe. Have fun ruining your health and finances, hope it's worth it.

Indeed, wow.

So, we should just ignore the fact that up to 90% of people worldwide who die of lung cancer are also smokers? If any of what you posted is true (instead of falsehoods and psuedoscience) then the real rate of lung cancer between smokers and non-smokers would be the same. How do you explain that?

There are hundreds of videos and thousands of photos of "smoker's lungs" available for you to view online. Are you saying all of these lungs came from coal miners? That's a lot of coal miners who gave up their lungs for science. (If there was a rolling-eyes emoticon in this forum, I'd be using it right here.) Occam's razor says that these lungs are from actual smokers, and there isn't a secret coal-miner source for lungs which researchers are covering up.

But don't take my word for it. Take a visit to your nearest institution of education in medicine and ask to view a long-time smoker's autopsy. Then come back and tell us how pristine and free-of disease those lungs were.

I'm all against anti-smoking *laws*, but to claim that smoking is actually *healthy* for our lungs is just willful ignorance of research and reality.

Numbers mean nothing

100% of all people alive today that are 110 years old or older were smokers. Does that mean that smoking increases longevity? Probably not, but interesting none the less.

I certainly can't argue

... with statistics pulled out of one's ass.

Did you read the article? Its

Did you read the article? Its not the smoking that's causing cancer, its the radiation in the air. I've been smoking since I was 14 and my lungs are fine. My grandma died of lung cancer and never smoked a day in her life. Those black lung pics they show are from other causes and they use the smoking propaganda as the cause. Native Americans who smoked heavily never contracted lung cancer. In fact, lung cancer wasn't much of a threat at all until after the nuclear tests that spewed radiation into the air. In case you've forgotten, radiation doesn't go away for thousands of years so you too are still breathing it.

I think willful ignorance is more those who prefer to not look at other possible causes and would rather stick to the Govt sanctioned propaganda, like numerous Drs today who are educated with that same propaganda that smoking tobacco causes lung cancer. Govt propaganda and their willfully hiding studies has a long history in this country. Marijuana being the most obvious example. Watch Reefer Madness one day and you'll see how the Govt pushes bad science.

Blessings )o(

Dude marijuana actually

Dude marijuana actually rebuts your point. It is illegal, and yet still they do not make up lies this severe about it. You are claiming SO many things, so many reports, so much research from SO many independent sources, is all lies. When you dig into weed you clearly find that the research done shows no related deaths and that the only argument they really have is that it's a gateway drug.

Why wouldn't they lie about weed if they were willing to completely fabricate an entire world worth of evidence and studies? I'm not saying the government is beyond doing terrible things, but their policies on weed compared to what you are claiming are their policies on tobacco do not match up.

"Stop poking fun at Michael

"Stop poking fun at Michael Jackson when he appears at your local airport wearing a surgical mask over his nose and mouth. He may look eccentric, but Michael will almost certainly outlive most of us."

Did you read the medical journals?

About 90% of people who die of lung cancer worldwide are, or were, smokers. If lung cancer is caused by radiation, everyone worldwide would be getting lung cancer pretty much equally, regardless of whether they smoked or not. Since that is not the case, the theory espoused by the article is false. That's really all there is to it.

So your grandma was unlucky and was one of the 10% who got lung cancer without smoking. And when was the last time you opened up your chest and took a look at your lungs? Are they really "fine" as you say?

If there is one thing which constantly surprises me on a so-called libertarian website like the Daily Paul, it is the prevalence of these health related conspiracy theories which all have one thing in common: Despite the reams of medical data saying otherwise, it isn't our own actions which are making us sick, it is a secretly malicious government program.

If my child gets autism, it isn't because 1000 potential confounding biological factors, it's because the government gave him/her a vaccine. If I get stomach or colon cancer, it isn't because I eat a lot of junk, but because the government is putting fluoride in my water. If I get lung cancer, it's not because I smoke, it's because government is seeding the air with radioactive particles.

It amounts to a total abdication of personal responsibility. The blame for our every health problem shifted onto someone, or something, else even though our own actions are the very simplest explanation.

So not only is it willful ignorance to pretend that smoking doesn't cause lung cancer (or even protects against it!) it makes a fiction out of the idea that you control your own liberty and destiny in life. If something goes wrong, it must be someone else's fault. Of course, not everything *is* your fault, but the mindset that *nothing* is our fault is becoming the pervasive mindset of modern civilisation. I am sad to see it becoming so strongly represented on a site advocating the philosophy of taking responsibility for one's own actions.

Dang good points old friend but one thing,

Dispersal patterns for radiating particles aren't gonna be even.

Most of those who think so actually don't and most of those who think sew actually rip.

Oh? Then, what, they're going

Oh? Then, what, they're going to magically attract to people who smoke this rat-poison-based substance? At a 9-to-1 rate? Or is that just coincidence?

Call me superstitious, but if the statistics are this skewed I think something is off lol.

Call you superstitious or simply dense?

Just by way of example there are these things called WEATHER PATTERNS like the gulfstream that deposit things from one place into another, and it's not an even distribution globally.

Good thing there's rational observation so you don't have to rely on your superstitions so much. Like the implication that God or evolution first produced rat poison and tobacco is somehow derived from it.

Most of those who think so actually don't and most of those who think sew actually rip.


That's pretty interesting.

My dad smoked 3 packs a day.

My dad smoked 3 packs a day. Too bad all that money went up in smoke.

I think Berwick is stupid to smoke..

the human body I don't think can handle the inhalation of smoke into its lungs safely.

Very entertaining read. I'm going to start checking his blog.

The paranoia against smoking tobacco has reached ridiculous levels. Last weekend I was smoking outside of a bar and two different girls stumbled up to me (well 6 feet away from me because they didn't want to get too close to a filthy smoker) and drunkenly slurred to me that smoking is disgusting and it is going to kill me.

It was my great pleasure to laugh at them and point out that they are going to die, too. Maybe before me. Who knows?

Cyril's picture

I didn't know you were forgiving enough

I didn't know you were forgiving enough to even bother spending some of your wit because of brainless sheeple. Props to you... too. ;)

Not sure I could have had the calm to do the same, given that context. Honest.

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.


"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

I'm completely fine with

I'm completely fine with people smoking in their own space. I don't want them in mine. Everyone should have the option of destroying their own life or health, but there should be no "safety net" for deliberately poor choices.

Would your safety-net ban extend to divorced

individuals and their children? There's tons of research on the negative consequences of divorce to both adults and children - negative effects on physical health; emotional health; and financial health (it puts many women below the poverty line). What's especially sad is the depression it causes in children - so many who are in regular therapy and take anti-depressants; increase in suicides, too (though I guess that's a healthcare savings?). Here's just one article re adults. http://www.webmd.com/balance/news/20090728/divorce-has-lasti...

I don't mean to be facetious, but there are myriad life choices with potential negative effects re food, alcohol, drugs, exercise, smoking, divorce, playing sports, and other behaviors with known risks (and I'd add eating GMO foods among risky behaviors, what we can't be certain about except buying certified organic). I think it would be impossible to control as tied to benefits or withholding thereof, although to be sure socialist Obamacare will try!

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

I'll put it this way... If

I'll put it this way... If the states wish to implement safety nets for their people, the voters should have that option, but I personally am not in favor of having conscientious people pay for the deliberate bad choices of others.

I agree.

I don't know how the issue could be resolved. While safety nets, especially in the short term, seem the humane thing to do, I think it would be next to impossible to parse things out as to cause & effect.

Unrelated, btw, I love it when I notice your name for what it conjures up in my mind. However unhealthy dyed-orange processed cheese may be, and though I haven't had it in years, Velveeta grilled cheese sandwiches are among the "comfort foods" I recall from growing up. :)

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

Yes, as disgusting as it may

Yes, as disgusting as it may seem in retrospect, as a kid I loved those grilled cheese sandwiches also. :D

Couldn't resist


When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

Mmmmmm... Cheese.

Sorry. I read too far and

my thoughts about the first part of the letter dissipated into the air as quickly as cigarette smoke. Never heard that "Obamanation" song before. In a recent post of my own (Don't Mock The Lady), I said "Just as the Republican Party has learned it can no longer take for granted the votes of more free-thinking libertarian-oriented conservatives, a more free-thinking black community must make it clear to Democrats that their votes can no longer be taken for granted. Nice example of just that. And over a million hits.

P.S. Back to the subject of this post, ever see Jim Jarmusch's "Coffee & Cigarettes?" It's a series of vignettes of people just sitting having a cup of coffee & cigarette. This is one of my favorite scenes, with Iggy Pop and Tom Waits. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49tTzEifY6M

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir