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View Diary: I Came Back From Cuba Today (265 comments)

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  •  He destroyed them before they destroyed you! (12+ / 0-)

    That's how I look at it, anyway.

    This machine makes fascists feel bad. (Meteor Blades-approved version)

    by Rich in PA on Tue May 18, 2010 at 07:45:36 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  oh I wasn't gonna smoke 'em (20+ / 0-)

      if i had any desire to smoke a cigar I woulda done it in Cuba where the U.S. customs people couldn't have stopped me. It was a gift for a friend who asked for it.

      •  A friend of mine brought Cuban rum and cigars (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lightfoot, m00finsan, James Robinson

        from Germany (where they sell these products in every good department store and some super markets) to Detroit and didn't even know it wasn't legal. She sailed through customs without any problems...but then, she didn't have a Cuban stamp in her passport...

        "In the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope." Barack H. Obama

        by aufklaerer on Wed May 19, 2010 at 12:55:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  oh puh-leeze. cut the moral majoritarianizing. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pletzs, Progressive Chick, tnproud2b

      Surgeon General's report showed that cigar smokers live as long as nonsmokers, and presently they are classified as nonsmokers for medical purposes.  (I smoke a pipe and I'm classified as a nonsmoker.)

      If you don't believe in abortions, don't have one.

      If you don't like cigars, don't have one.  

      •  The National Cancer Center doesn't agree (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sidnora, m00finsan
        •  un-quantified = propaganda. (0+ / 0-)

          Your "fact" sheet does not quantify the increased risk.  

          But if we look at the numbers, this is what we get:

          Quote:  Approximately 36,000 people in the US will be newly diagnosed with oral cancer in 2010. This is the fourth year in a row in which there has been an increase in the rate of occurrence of oral cancers, in 2007 there was a major jump of over 11% in that single year. There are two distinct pathways by which most people come to oral cancer. One is through the use of tobacco and alcohol, a long term historic problem and cause, and the other is through exposure to the HPV-16 virus (human papilloma virus version 16), a newly identified etiology, and the same one which is responsible for the vast majority of cervical cancers in women.

          Current US population is 307 million as of July 2009.

          If we assume that roughly 1/4 of US population is age 18 or below, we get approx. 230 million adults.

          Divide 36,000 into 230 million and you get .00015:  in other words 1.5 people in 1,000.  

          If you assume that 2/3 of those oral cancers are from smoking, that's a risk level of 1 in 1,000.   If you assume a fatality rate of 50% from late-stage diagnosis, your risk of dropping dead from it is 1 in 2,000.

          Meanwhile, half of all murders, suicides, and auto fatalities are alcohol-related.  

          Murders: 18,573

          Suicides: 33,000.

          Automobile fatalities: 33,963.

          Total:  85,536 as of latest stats.  

          Alcohol-related:  42,768.  And that doesn't even begin to count the deaths due to alcoholism and its sequelae.  

          So if you're going on a jihad over approx. 24,000 oral cancers that might be attributed to smoking, which produce approx. 12,000 deaths, how'bout bringing back alcohol prohibition over the approx. 43,000 violent deaths due to alcohol?

          •  So, your original point was inaccurate (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            We can talk about what the state should, or shouldn't do, in response to these numbers, but the fact is that tobacco kills.

            By contrast, alcohol doesn't kill, in and of itself.  Taking your argument - which I know you're only making for the sake of a point - we should ban food because overuse can cause all kinds of health problems.  I don't see a need for the government to dictate what people consume, whether it's food, alcohol, drugs or tobacco.

            •  alcohol doesn't kill? surely you jest? (0+ / 0-)

              Alcohol is overtly cytotoxic: it kills cells.  It kills cells by dissolving the fats in the cell membranes.  

              Getting roaring drunk costs about 30,000 brain cells, which take years go grow back.  Someone who gets drunk a couple of times a month can end up with a net deficit of a half million brain cells per year.  

              LD50 for alcohol is a blood alcohol level of 0.40%, which is to say four-tenths of one percent.  

              A few hundred people each year die from acute alcohol toxicity.  Many of them are college students, such as frat rats during "initiations" that entail consuming enormous doses of alcohol.  

              Cases of deaths due to acute nicotine poisoning are rare enough to be individually reportable in the peer reviewed literature, for example:


              The victim was a suicide who ingested a solution of extracted nicotine in order to kill herself.  


              Speaking of nicotine, according to cigarette smokers who have switched to pipes, it takes two pipefuls to equal one cigarette in terms of the effects of the nicotine.  

              A full pipe takes about 1/2 hour to smoke, longer if it's got a large bowl.   A cigarette takes about 10 minutes to smoke.  So one cigarette supplies twice the nicotine in 1/6 the time.  That's how addictions happen: dosage and uptake rate.  Coca tea won't get you hooked, but crack sure will.  


              Anyway, my conclusion is the same as yours:  Government and parastatal entities such as private corporations, have no right to dictate what you put into your body, with exceptions that are few and far between such as crack (inhaled freebase of cocaine, immediately addictive) and meth (which produces paranoid schizophrenia in a matter of days).  

              Eat, drink, smoke, and be merry.  

              And as for kids, the biggest health hazard for them in the average home is TV.  

      •  And, the American Cancer Society (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        historys mysteries, m00finsan

        Pipe smokers have an increased risk of dying from cancers of the lung, throat, esophagus, larynx, pancreas, and colon and rectum. They also have an increased risk of dying of heart disease, stroke, and chronic lung disease. The level of these risks seems to be about the same as that for cigar smokers.

        Smoking cigars or pipes is not a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes.

        Feel free to poison yourself in your own home, of course, as long as you don't subject minors to second-hand smoke.

        •  see my above comment. (0+ / 0-)

          Running the numbers, we get a death risk from cigars or pipes, of 1 in 2,000, or a total of approx. 12,000 deaths per year that could potentially be attributed to cigars or pipes.

          That compares to about 43,000 violent deaths per year due to murders, suicides, and auto fatalities in which alcohol is a factor.  Not even counting the fatalities due to alcoholism itself.

          So if you want to poison yourself in your own home, feel free, as long as you don't subject minors to second-hand drink.  

          And if you're so concerned about the health impacts of pipes and cigars, you really ought to go for bringing back alcohol prohibition first: you'll save more than three times as many lives.

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