From ‘Taking Liberties’ we hear that ASH have recently published a briefing document for their All Party Parliamentary Group on Smoking and Health: ‘TOBACCO FRONT GROUPS & THIRD PARTY LOBBYING TACTICS’, which includes a list of 66 organisations they claim to be Tobacco Front Groups. While some are directly and indirectly involved with the tobacco industry, many like F2C are clearly not.
Just merely agreeing in part with tobacco companies is ‘guilt by association’ and the merest whiff of a past link (especially by the dead, who cannot be libelled) turns us into mouth-foaming Big Tobacco lackeys. Childish and paranoid is my opinion.
Freedom2Choose have a confession to make: we are the Secret Front for Big Pharma. On the 7th April 2011 I was invited to speak at the British Medical Journal’s debate on whether smoking is a disease (addiction) or a habit. Sponsored by Pfizer, the other speakers were Chritianne Vink, a biological psychologist (who supported me), Alison Britton a lecturer in law from Caledonian University and Antonella Cardone, Public Health Director, Global Smokefree Partnership, Rome who wanted smoking to be classified as a disease. Not only were my expenses paid for by Pfizer but I also got a modest appearance fee.
'Outrageous Double Bluffs...'
So, all F2C’s campaigns, comments, views and opinions are designed to further the cause of the nicotine replacement drug industries. As such our word is gospel and we have been running one of the most outrageous double bluffs seen in science. I can only conclude that, now we have come out, we will be invited to shape UK and EU health policies with impunity. I expect the personal invitations from Andrew Lansley, Deborah Arnott and John Dalli to land on our mats by special delivery forthwith.
For the record, since our inception as a legal constituted organisation (I was one of the original signatories), can I confirm that F2C has not and does not receive funding, remuneration, expenses or grace-and-favour from tobacco companies, their affiliates, nominees, or subsidiaries.