Re: [asa] IPCC

From: Rich Blinne <>
Date: Sun Feb 11 2007 - 20:52:57 EST

On 2/11/07, Janice Matchett <> wrote:

> The available data over the past century can be interpreted within the
> framework of a variety of hypotheses as to cause and mechanisms for the
> measured changes. The hypothesis that greenhouse- gas emissions have
> produced or are capable of producing a significant warming of the Earth's
> climate since the start of the industrial era is credible, and merits
> continued attention. However, the hypothesis cannot be proven by formal
> theoretical arguments, and the available data allow the hypothesis to be
> credibly disputed.

And the link between tobacco and cancer cannot be proven by formal
theoretical arguments, either. But I'll give the Fraser Institute cred
for consistency because they said basically the same thing here when
sponsoring two conferences in 1999 entitled "Junk Science, Junk
Policy? Managing Risk and Regulation" and "Should government butt out?
The pros and cons of tobacco regulation." From their 2000 paper The
History of Tobacco Regulation p. 18:

<quote> To believe that government served the public interest by
taxing the fiscal externality from smoking one would have to see taxes
on cigarettes being lowered from their present levels. One would also
have to see that government is consistent in its views about fiscal
externalities. This would mean that governments would tax fatty
foods at many times the rate they now tax them. Renowned Oxford
epidemiologists Sir Richard Doll and Richard Peto found that diet, and
in particular fats, contributed more to deaths from cancer than did
tobacco. Figure 5, drawn from their researches, illustrates the
contributions of diet (35 percent) and tobacco (30 percent) to cancer.
In a similar study of Albertans between 1984 and 1988, Birdsell et al.
(1990) found that diet and
tobacco were "the most important causes of cancer deaths in
Canada."There is near unanimous agreement in the scientific community
that a high-calorie diet is a primary factor in cancer. In spite of
such findings, there is no crusade against eaters of fatty foods and
fewer feel embarrassed to be seen munching a Zero Bar in public, or
asking for fries with poutine and an order of mayo on the side, than
are embarrassed to be seen smoking in public. A government impressed
by Doll and Peto's findings would not make tobacco its main target of
public health.</quote>

But, hey, tobacco may be good for you just like climate change. Go and
drive your SUV and while you're at it, light up.

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Received on Sun Feb 11 20:53:50 2007

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