Why is this news?

Apparently, warning children that snacks are going to make them fat just makes them want the snack more.

Surely every parent already knows this, starting with the very first parents right at the dawn of humanity? Tell a child they can’t have something and their brain immediately defaults to ‘You’re keeping the good stuff for yourself!’

They have to try it, to find out why it’s not allowed. Tell them not to touch fire and they’ll touch it to find out why. In that case only once, but tell them not to eat chocolate and they’ll test that assertion over and over.

The antismoking crusade is what drives children to smoking. It’s bad, it’s evil, you can’t have it… so they have to try it and find out for themselves. Some won’t like it, some will. The same goes for alcohol, sugar, salt… That’s because children are people, and people are all individuals with different likes and dislikes. Something modern medicine can’t seem to grasp.

Children aren’t stupid. Repellent, unhygienic and despicable yes, but not stupid.

Children want to be grown up. They want to try grown up stuff. Okay, when we grow up we realise we were far better off being children, but what child knows this apart from those of us who never really grew up?

So, tell them they can’t have it and it’s grown-up stuff. It exists therefore someone has it. It must be the grown-ups. They want it for themselves. Why can’t we have it?

The concept of ‘one day you’ll be a grown-up’ is entirely lost on children. On most adults too. They cannot envisage the future, only the past – and for children it’s often just the ‘now’. That’s why children don’t see consequences, and why most adults don’t see them either. They cannot think ahead. They don’t know how.

I’ll soon be 57. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. Most people follow a path through life. Not me. I just bumble through and most of it (barring a few utter disasters) seems to work out. I’m alive, and eternally broke, but I can pay the rent and buy food and put petrol in the car so everything is good. I don’t want to be rich. There is nothing I need that much money for.

I remember being a child. I had a Dalek suit made of PVC. It was floppy and didn’t hold the Dalek shape but it was fun. Armed with a sink plunger and a whisk. I had a Scammel tank transporter steel toy and a tank (can’t remember which) to put on the back. I melted many, many toy soldiers on the coal fire.

I had Action Man toys, Batman’s Batmobile with plastic flame from the exhaust, Joe 90’s car, Bond’s Aston Martin, many many more. These would all be worth a fortune now if I had thought ahead. Kept them pristine and in their boxes. All are gone.

But I was a child. Joe 90 died in a mid-air collision with Thunderbird 2. Batman and Bond failed in their missions in spectacular style, involving a screwdriver and deadly curiosity. I took things apart to see how they worked. I was not thinking of the future. There wasn’t one. There was only ‘now’. The future happens after sleep and it’ll be the same as today.

Yeah, I was told not to touch the drinks cabinet. So obviously I had a go at the sherry, the easiest one to open. I was strangely uninterested in my dad’s cigarettes but then he never told me not to try them. Either he assumed I couldn’t light them, or that I wouldn’t be interested, or that it was so obvious he didn’t need to tell me. Whatever the reason, they weren’t on the banned list so weren’t interesting.

I have stuck a knife in the toaster and I have run with scissors. I’m still here. The scissors were closed and held point down and I unplugged the toaster before digging out the stuck crumpet. They don’t tell you that part. Just the overall ‘it’s dangerous’, not the way to make it not dangerous.

Snacks won’t make you fat unless you eat a lot of them and don’t move much. That is not the warning that’s ever given. There is no safe level of biscuits or crisps – that is the warning and it’s patently ridiculous.

Children see it. Medics and pressure groups don’t. Can you?

The Salt that Wasn’t

The Callous Arseholes of Spite and Hate (CASH) have declared there is far too much salt in crumpets.

I like crumpets. I doubt the salt content would be of any concern to the healthists if they saw how much butter, jam and/or golden syrup I load onto them. Anyway, I have them less than once a month, maybe two or three times a year, and I seriously doubt anyone eats them daily. The salt contents of crumpets are pretty much an irrelevance in almost everyone’s diet. You might as well whine about the saturated fat content of reindeer meat.

But read on in the article and you find they aren’t talking about salt at all. No, the culprit here is sodium bicarbonate, aka bicarbonate of soda, aka baking powder. Technically, in chemical terms, it’s ‘a salt’ but in layman’s terms it’s not ‘salt’ (sodium chloride) because it doesn’t taste salty.

So it’s not ‘salt’ they are after. It’s sodium. An essential element for a fully functioning nervous system and other metabolic things that keep you alive and conscious. You are to give up those things and leave them for the elite, they don’t want you able to think too much or move too fast.

Danish cooking uses ammonium bicarbonate. Clever really, the ammonium part becomes ammonia in cooking and goes away in the steam. Hard to get in the UK, but CynaraeStMary found it online and there’s a huge pile of cookies here as a result. I have sampled… a few   😉

CASH (apt name, isn’t it?) want to force everyone to use potassium bicarbonate instead. Because a potassium excess is exactly the same as a sodium excess and your nervous system is fucked just the same.

Actually, no.

The nervous system needs potassium and sodium and it needs them in balance. Too much of one or the other and the excess is excreted. That’s why kidneys are really useful things to have.

Too little of one or the other and there is nothing any organ in the body can do about it. The body can dump an excess but can’t replenish a shortage of an element out of thin air. That’s when nerves start failing and your brain gets fuddled and then you die. In even more pain and despair than a 500-a-day smoker with a bad case of the lumps.

CASH say salt reduction targets will fail. Of course they will fail because if they look remotely like succeeding, CASH simply start including other sodium compounds that aren’t salt. They will keep doing this until they have eliminated sodium from the diet altogether.

There will be a massive outbreak of hyponatremia and the cost to the NHS will be utterly astounding. CASH will get rich while the NHS infrastructure collapses as a result of their pronouncements.

But that’s okay. Bankrupting the NHS in a ‘good cause’ is fine.

As long as the smokers aren’t doing it.

I wonder… will we ever elect a political party that has a whole brain between them? It isn’t looking likely at the moment.

We must be forced to listen to Experts

The Experts are in a panic. Nobody is listening any more. So now we should be forced to listen.

I don’t see how that’s going to work. A Clockwork Orange style chair perhaps, with clamps holding our ears open?

The link is to financial ‘experts’ and while they have a place, I, like most people, don’t have enough finance to make any kind of advice worthwhile – unless it’s advice on how to make a limited resource last longer. I find the charity shops and places like Aldi and Lidl are pretty good in that respect. Nobody on a five figure salary can advise me, they’d be dealing in what, to them, is pocket money.

Yet they don’t see why nobody listens to ‘experts’ any more. It’s clear enough. So-called ‘experts’ tell us we are sugar addicts and salt addicts and shoe-buying addicts and breathing addicts and equate all of it to smoking. Why? Because smoking is now the Eighth Deadly Sin and anything linked to it automatically becomes evil.

It’s all lies. Not one shred of evidence behind any of it, yet it’s paraded as if it’s truth. Five-a-day fruit and vegetables. I guarantee you have not read the research that led to that directive. There isn’t any. It’s made up. Alcohol unit allowances. No evidence. Made up numbers. All this comes from ‘experts’ and now the experts are complaining that nobody listens to them any more.

Of course we don’t listen. Experts have proven themselves to be liars. Over and over and over again.

The medical profession morphed into the Tobacco, Alcohol and Diet Control Police at the behest of these experts. Nobody trusts the medical profession as a result of this. Real doctors might complain but they are the only ones who can change it.

Science became the propaganda wing of the New Puritans and published conclusions with no data. Nobody trusts science because of this. Real scientists might complain but they are the only ones who can change it.

There’s no point these Experts complaining we aren’t listening and any attempt to force their views on us will be met with derision now. There is a better way than force, Experts.

Try telling the truth for a change.

Health and Safety

Both of these are relative terms. I am in relatively good health, but won’t be running any marathons or partaking of athletic activities of any kind in the foreseeable future. Mostly that’s because I don’t want to – the idea of lifting heavy things that don’t need to be moved or running when nobody is chasing me is just silly. I don’t need to be any stronger or faster than I am now, unless there is an incident involving a falling piano in my future.

Since I’m not particularly musical, that seems unlikely.

As for safety, that is an exceedingly relative term. It is not and should never become an absolute. That’s not possible anyway, and certainly not desirable.

A world in which you are absolutely safe all the time is really just a prison. A solitary confinement in a rubber room. No belts, no sharp objects. That’s the only way to be fully safe and you just know there are people out there who think it’s a good idea.

Sugar is now more dangerous than tobacco. The Coca-Cola truck is now more evil than the drug pusher at the school gates. The relativity here was somehow inverted in the last decade or so. It is insane, but there are those with influence who are also insane and that’s where it comes from.

I have actually seen these people insist on Twitter that Electrofag contains all the same chemicals as tobacco. If it did, it would taste and feel exactly like smoking and every single one of us would have switched by now. Since Electrofag contains no tobacco and doesn’t burn anything, the idea that it produces the same as a cigarette is comical to the point where your underwear is at risk.

Invert the inversions, as suggested by @BuckoTheMoose on Twitter, and smoking is no more dangerous than a fizzy drink. I can go with that. Relatively, on that scale, Electrofag is less dangerous than a glass of water.

There are much more dangerous things to worry about. The 2000+ nuclear explosions we humans have set off in the last 75 years and we’re still playing with those huge fireworks. All that fallout is in the air we breathe and people want to believe that half a gram of burning leaf, 100 metres away, is dangerous? Really?

How about the snooping and controlling laws passed by governments who say they will never misuse them? maybe that government won’t, but what about the next one? Or the one after that? Can’t happen?

Hitler was voted into power. The people handed him control of Germany. He didn’t come to power on a promise to declare war on every country he’d heard of and round up and kill millions of people just because he didn’t like them. Yet that’s what he did.

He had to pass into law his own Enabling Act before he could do it. Imagine if he inherited an Emergency Powers Act from the previous government. How much easier would it have been to take total control then?

Governments insist we must mitigate tiny risks to protect our health and not use the NHS that we’ve paid for, and not risk taking time off work for sickness or injury. That might harm the economy. Yes, the same economy that successive governments have turned into a basket case by spending our money even before they’ve taken it from us.

Yet the governments are the ones creating enabling acts for future power crazed maniacs to use and funding (with our money) weapons that can wipe us all out in an instant. Worse, weapons that gradually poison the entire atmosphere even though they’ve never been fired at anyone. The tests are enough to have that effect.

Don’t nag me about my smoking, drinking or diet. None of these things harm anyone else. The evidence suggests that haven’t really done much to me either. I’m not the one poisoning your atmosphere with radioactive fallout. I’m not the one enacting laws that North Korea haven’t thought of yet. I’m not trying to control anyone else’s life at all.

When you put the real health and safety issues of this world in context, I’m relatively harmless.

Big Antismoking

I didn’t know there was such a huge business involved in hating smokers. There is a National Centre For Training Life Controlling Busybodies.

Yes, they make their living training arseholes to be bigger arseholes and spewing hate and lies about 20% of the population.

The have a section on Electrofag too. Basically, reducing your smoking with occasional use of Electrofag is not considered a good thing. You must stop completely so you can not-enjoy the rest of your miserable existence on this overtaxed and over-controlled world.

Your life, you see, isn’t yours. It belongs to people who have no life.

They don’t care about smokers. We are cattle to them. We are how they make money and they do not want us to stop smoking. Like ASH and all the others, they want to keep nagging at us and keep the money flowing.

If we all stopped buying tobacco, all of these people would be out of a job. It is not in their interests to succeed in their stated aims, it is in their interests to keep piling more and more shit on the smokers (and vapers, you guys needn’t get smug) but not actually making them stop.

It’s a hate machine and it has more and more adherents every day.

Soon I will have a garden again. And a greenhouse.

Tobacco is very easy to grow, and (currently) legal too.

Sugar: It’s a kind of food, you know?

Once when I was a child I had a sugar sandwich. Two slices of buttered bread with a layer of sugar in between. Much to the disgust of every one of my relatives, and even though it was actually pretty horrible, I ate the whole thing. I’d asked for it, was given it, and have never been able to back down from a challenge. Especially not one I’d set myself.

It was a one off. I never asked for another and couldn’t even think of eating one now. Don’t try this at home, it’s really not worth it.

People say there was less sugar around in the ‘old days’. Cobblers. There was loads of it. Real sugar was easy to get and desserts were pretty much made of it. Candy floss and sugar mice – yes, a mouse shape made entirely from sugar with a string tail. I remember those. Probably cost me a couple of teeth later, but worth it.

Aniseed balls, blackjacks, fruit salad sweets that had not been so much as introduced to a fruit or a salad, even sweet cigarettes. Toffee slabs that came with a hammer so you could crack the damn thing to make a start on it, and then we kids got the hammer afterwards as a play tool or just for throwing at each other.

There was plenty of sugar around. Everyone took sugar in tea, a friend of mine liked five spoonfuls in each cup and he developed into something that resembled the Hulk. I mean the Lou Ferrigno Hulk, not the Cyril Smith melted version. Didn’t do him any harm.

Plenty of fat in our diets too. Everything was deep fried and not in vegetable oil. In a big pan of melted lard. Chips did not go in the oven. The slices of fresh potato went straight in the hot lard. Then we covered them -and I mean covered them – in salt and a sprinkle of vinegar.

I still drink a little vinegar now and then. I like it, always have. Malt vinegar, naturally, not that clear crap.

There were a few fat kids around, but not many. There might be a few more around now but really, not many. When I start work at 4 pm, I run the gauntlet of feral groin fruits as they emerge from school and lose all the civilisation and obedience the teachers spent so much effort instilling in them. They are mostly wiry and fast and hard to hit on the road. I need a better car.

Maybe a tractor with bale spikes. Hey kids, kebab time…

I don’t think this childhood obesity is a real thing at all. If it was half as bad as claimed, the planet would have tilted on its axis by now. They skew it by testing the 10-11 year olds. I was a seriously chubby 11 year old. By the time I was 13 I could have rivalled catwalk models for being the closest thing to being alive and not actually visible edge on.

I have to find that photo of me on holiday in Spain at 13. Dressed in Goth black with a black sombrero, I looked just like a carpet tack.

Kids are supposed to chubby up between 9 and 11. It’s the body loading up for the puberty growth spurt. I suspect the anti-food brigade are well aware of this and they probably realise that by keeping kids skinny at that age, they will stunt their growth and make them into feeble and easily controlled worker drones for the future.

Maybe parents now hide their fat kids in basements and attic rooms, safe in the knowledge they can’t leave until they are slim enough to get through an average sized door.

Yes, okay, kids now spend more time developing thumb callouses with their phones and playing video games that make them think they’re tough while they’re really getting weaker. Okay, they aren’t allowed to do the things we did like climbing trees and wandering the woods and bringing lizards home in jars and tadpoles in our wellies. They aren’t allowed to hunt each other with airguns or throw toffee hammers at each other while shouting ‘I am Thor!’

Must be dull being a kid now. Even the comics are sanitised. I saw a Beano recently. What the Hell happened to that?

You would think Gubblement would have realised by now that ‘childhood obesity’ is entirely their fault. They won’t let kids do anything any more. They reduce the waist size they consider obese and they refuse to let kids do what kids have always done – burn off energy by being little buggers. They’d burn off a lot of energy a lot faster if I had a tractor with baling spikes but that’s unlikely to be allowed, I feel.

We burned off a lot when adults chased us. They used to chase us all the time, usually shouting something, but adults dare not chase kids now. They’d be shot by armed police.

The solution is, of course, ban something. Regulation of people’s private lives. The commenters on that article agree – with nothing at all to back up their prejudices. They think it won’t affect them. Gradual encroachment into your private life is fine, they cannot extrapolate to where it goes from there. These idiots will call on us one day to save them.

No.

As for the Spiteful Nannying Party, well, if you’re in Scotland and you vote for them, consider this.

They do not consider you an adult. They consider you a dolt who must be controlled for your own good.

Is that how you see yourself? Is that really – I mean really – what you want to happen to your life? You really want someone telling you every detail of how you must live?

Then keep voting SNP.

You know it makes no sense.

Seven thousand nothings

There are now seven thousand chemicals in tobacco, and the same number of chemicals in the smoke from a cigarette. The educationally challenged will believe this without question because they want to. They want to hate someone – anyone – and smokers are the easiest target today.

It’s how Hitler won Germany, by blaming it all on the Jews. How the Spanish Inquisition did so well, by blaming all evil on Protestants and Muslims. In the 1600s it was imaginary witches and these days it’s white man bad, everyone else good. Oh, and smokers are obviously stupid.

Obviously, because we question how 7000 chemicals can even be measured in the 0.6g of tobacco in the average cigarette.

We question how a little bit of dry leaf, which is mostly cellulose (made of glucose and not carcinogenic in any shape or form) can contain so many chemicals and all at detectable, never mind measurable levels.

Plant cell walls are made of cellulose which is a polymer of glucose. Dried, at least half of what you have there is cellulose so really we are talking about 7000 chemicals in 0.3 grams.

Okay, they probably include cellulose as a chemical so 6999 in 0.3 g, but we’ll round up to 7000 because they made the number up in the first place anyway. Ah, I remember when it was only 600.

And we’ll be generous and give them 0.5g of chemicals per fag because it makes the numbers easier, and no less ridiculous.

If antismokers had a brain between them they would realise that these deadly chemicals are present at 1/14000th of a gram per cigarette. Oh but wait – they don’t claim 7000 deadly chemicals. Just 7000 chemicals. Probably about the same number you’d find in lettuce or celery or… anything with a leaf on it.

Oh sure, you can take a kilo of tobacco and maybe find 7000 different chemicals (all of them naturally occurring because we are talking about leaves) if you include all the metabolic bits in there but almost all are harmless.

Oh and you won’t find road tar in there. That’s bitumen. From oil, not leaves. If you burn that and inhale the fumes you won’t get to your 20 a day today  😉

Yet smokers are stupid? You think that only 1/14000th of a gram of something that’s mostly harmless is deadly and you call me stupid?

Most of the material in a cigarette ends up as ash. The smoke is a tiny part of the total weight. It contains the magical 7000 chemicals too. We are talking micrograms now and still they want to divide it into 7000 undetectable little bits and claim it will kill you.

Death by homeopathy.

Comparatively, smoking in itself is far less dangerous than going outside to a busy street full of petrol and diesel fumes, and that is what the haters have made us do. So when we all get respiratory problems from the traffic fumes they can blame it on smoking and keep selling oil.

I’m not saying smoking is good for you. I don’t smoke to improve my health, I smoke because I enjoy it. I’ve been doing it for 35 years and have no ill effects. Is it as harmful as they claim? Hard to tell, when pretty much anything a smoker gets wrong with them is instantly blamed on smoking.

This wave of antismoking really took off big time with the introduction of NRT. You know, the patches and gum with the pitiful success rate that are pushed so hard by the antismoking crowd. They don’t like Electrofag because they get no back-handers from the Electrofag companies. Yet that has a much better success rate than the Pharmer drugs. Even I have a few that I use from time to time. They still don’t have tobacco flavour quite right although the menthol is pretty good.

Now they want a tax on Electrofags ‘to stop children buying them’ even though they are already not for sale to under 18s. Electrofags are already taxed. There’s VAT on them. What the Righteous want is a cut of the action, they want more money funneled their way so they can keep pushing their non-working methods that keep us all smoking and keep the gravy train on the rails.

If we all stop smoking, the antismokers are out of a job. They don’t want any successful cessation devices spoiling their easy ride.

Here’s a tip for the antismokers and the medics too. If you want people to listen to you, don’t make utterly farcical claims that anyone with half a brain can rip to shreds in a matter of moments.

When you get caught in a lie, people start to wonder if anything you say is true.