By Colin Grainger
You've got to hand it to this government. They really do have a black belt 4th Dan in wasting our money.
Figures just released indicate that they are spending a lot more money to force smokers to quit, and fewer are quitting. Terrific policy.
I think I'll try that idea at work. I'll do a really bad job and ask for a pay rise. Think it'll work?
No, me neither.
This is the whole story, encapsulated in the opening paragraph:
"THE number of people giving up smoking has dropped sharply despite the NHS spending more than ever on helping them quit".
We are not surprised in the least. You shouldn't be either. Not when you know that NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy) in the form of patches, gum and inhalators, are their preferred method. Recently we told you of a new study that said NRT has a failure rate of 98.4%. Not only are the NHS spending millions on useless cessation treatments, they steadfastly refuse to employ methods with a documented success rate of 58%.
This compounds the failure: anyone foolish enough to be bullied into quitting by these fanatics are doomed to fail because the very product they prescribe is criminally inadequate.
Why do they continually push this crap? Is it possible the NHS is actually run by the pharmaceutical companies? Or is it just that the NHS mandarins are addicted to wasting our money?
Time for the weasel words:
"A Department of Health spokesman said there was a big rise in people quitting in 2007 when smoking in public places was banned, so it was unfair to compare those with last year's figures".
"It's unfair to compare".
We said before the ban came in that there would be a rush to quit. I even suggested that you dump your tobacco stock and invest in pharma stock, but, I was quite specific at the time, I did say that you had to reverse that after about 90 days. We know that bans initially cause a dip in smoking, and a rise in quitting, but it always settles down and smoker prevalence usually increases again. We were right. Again.
The last line of the very short report says this:
"Smoking-related diseases cost the NHS £2.7 billion a year"
This tells us a couple of things. It tells us that the reporter, Anna Davis, went shopping for her facts at ASH Central. Only the zealots at ASH use this figure. Two months after they started telling this lie, we heard from the Health Minister who, when speaking in the House of Commons, told the House that the figure was £1.5 billion per year. Who are we to believe? I know, I know, it's a tricky one. The most mendacious, slimy government we have been exposed to for several hundred years, or ASH, the sales division of Nicorette?
So, we will run with £1.5 billion, just for laughs.
Even that figure is more than likely inaccurate. When you know that the term "smoking related diseases" is a misleading term, (because non-smokers can contract every disease a smoker can, without exception), you begin to realise the truth. How many non smokers are diagnosed with "smoking related diseases" and lumped in? What is the true and accurate number of smokers requiring treatment? We don't know. Neither does the government. And ASH have no clue either.
What we do know for certain is that HMG has thrown hundreds of millions at this. And with each new report about the "success" of the smoker ban, we know for sure it has all been wasted.
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