Smoker's Widow loses case against tobacco company

rolfw

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#1
The late partner of the widow started smoking in 1972 before warnings were put on cigarette packets. The widow claimed that as he was not made aware of the danger and subsequently he was too hooked to be able to give up, that the tobacco company should be liable.

What does everyone think about the outcome?
 

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#2
I am sure my response will invoke great debate but I feel I never did have the choice.
I started smoking as soon as I was conceived, I was a passive smoker after I was born and have been a true smoker since the age of 11, I decided to give up before my 50th birthday (no applause please ) it is now 13 months since and I have put on 2 stone in weight and I do not feel any healthier, I exercise every day and very ocassionally I could murder for a fag (but mostly the cravings are gone) but I exercised my choice to stop. Everyone with an ounce of intelligence knew and knows that smoking is bad for you. Animals know it and run away from it, bees know it and fly away from it, but as human beings we choose to ignore the instinctive reaction and the facts. Yes the tobacco companies did know it was addictive many decades ago but they chose not to disclose the fact. Even though we have all been made aware of the facts in some cases through experience in other through graphic TV programmes we all know it is bad for us. The point being we choose to ignore advice and that is the way it should be. We should have that choice. Some will argue that smokers should pay more towards their medical expenses or the NHS, in that case so should a skier who breaks a leg or a rugby player who cracks a rib or a footballer who breaks a leg. Do we therefore stop people flying in aeroplanes because they may get a DVT. In this particular court case I feel that the cigarette company should be liable and should pay a very large sum to a charitable organisation not to the widow.
 

rolfw

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#3
Yes, I have a slightly different view, I gave up a little longer ago than you and not for the first time, but this time I really wanted to, the weight gain has also been an issue.

Even before the warnings were put on the cigarette packs, the effects of smoking were well known, the fact that people ignored them is down to them and there really has been no shortage of information in the last 30 years.

I still have several friends who smoke and whilst being fully aware of the warnings and consequences, seem to subscribe to the "it won't happen to me" or I'm not ready to give up at the moment camps.

If you have continued smoking after about 1975, then what you get is down to you and not the cigarette companies.
 

kungpo

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#4
It's a very touchy subject. I would say that some people smoke because they are addicted, and some because they like it. I smoke because I like it. I have tried stopping (because it is bad for you) on a number of occasions, but (and some would argue being weak willed), I have returned to it. Personally I find it allows a bit of personal time and a break from the normal rush of life, but it is a personal choice.

BUT....if we stopped doing everything that was bad for us...well, what would we have left to enjoy?
 

rolfw

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#5
Don't disagree with you there, when I was in the licensed trade, I found also that having a cigarette, or perhaps just a couple of drags on a cigarette, was hugely calming and dangers took a back seat.
 

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#6
It is a touchy subject and that is probably why not many people are contributing to the thread. When I did decide to pack them in I gave myself 12 months to prepare and achieved it in 9 months. I used a mental reinforcement method rather than patches and tablets or gum. You really have to want to do it and even now I feel that I could fall off the wagon if circumstances warranted it, but my missus and my kids would never forgive me. I certainly do miss that quality time to myself but I do not miss the hours standing in the bl**dy freezing garage having a smoke or the full feeling in my chest. I never thought I would be able to have a drink without a smoke but I do. I hope I am not sounding holier than thou 'cos I am not and I do sympathise with anyone who is toying with the idea of quitting. It has to come from you wanting not anyone else!!
 

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#7
I gave up in 1976. I started at 13, smoking 4 domino while fishing. Smoking semed to be the norm when I was a youth. Everyone did it and on buses, trains etc. A treat for me at weekends when I was around 21 was 20 Peter Stuyvesant. How ridiculous that seems now. Anyway after giving up cigarettes I tried small cigars and liked them, just a couple now and then, especially with a pint and when playing snooker. Haven't had anything for 9 years now.

Smokers are lepers now it seems and are being driven from most public places. Strange thing is, if I go to a pub or whatever now and ppl are smoking it seems to cling to my clothes so when I get home yuuuk. Don't remember it was like that when I smoked.
 

McDude

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#8
I think the sad thing is that although the addictiveness of nicotine has come out (some cig companies still deny this) there has not really been much effort made by governments to force such companies to reduce or eliminate the amount of nicotine and for that matter all the other 300 or so chemicals that are added to the natural tobacco. Why is this? well firstly i think its because governments seem interested in how much money they can make from fag taxes and the second thing is probably due to the strong multinational cigarette lobbies that exist to put pressure on governments for minimum legislation.
I am not putting the blame solely on the companies, every adult is responsible for their actions, but when you have a substance like nicotine which has been proven to be up to 100 times more addictive than cocaine (or heroin) can't remember which, and also works in the same way as these drugs by attaching to receptors in the brain and spinal cord, hence the cravings when their level reduces in the body, now how can you give up smoking so easily?
 

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#9
Never been a smoker (well only when in Amsterdam ), Ive realised that most friends that took it up were victims of peer pressure at school - it was 'hard'. Thirty years later most have managed to quit as family, outgoing expenditures mean that what was social then, doesnt make sense.

Cant quite understand how anyone still believes the sale of cigarettes is not based purely on the income to a very large syndicate, just like the breweries, but then Ive never been pulled in.
Think of the amount of money smoking takes from your pay packet each year, then look at what you could do with it if you kept that sum for something worthwhile.
 
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#11
....or in full......
Cigareets is a blot on the whole human race,
A man is a monkey with one in his face,
So take warning dear friend, take warning dear brother,
Its a fire on one end and a fool on t'other.

This popular song was around at least 25 years before 1975.
 

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#12
I can't really see that the complainant has a leg to stand-on. The dangers of smoking were well known to the general public in 1972 whether or not warnings were included on the packets.

Anyone who chose to start smoking from the sixties onwards really has no grounds for complaining when they become ill. Part of being a grown-up, is accepting responsibility for your own choices.

That said, it is hard to think of another product which is legally on sale that kills a third or more of its consumers. Would the government allow mobile phones or a garden weedkiller to be on sale if they killed even 1% of its users?
 
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