When Is A Straight Line Not A Straight Line?

by Dick Puddlecote

Note: I heard this story on the Today programme and thought it was a lie. My thanks to Dick for nailing it. SIG

When Is A Straight Line Not A Straight Line? I don’t know where the usual half-wits who put their name to BBC website smoking articles have disappeared to, they seem to have been rather quiet of late. As such, today’s breathless paraphrasing of a classic case of tobacco control industry ‘science by press release’ was left to Adam Brimelow to present.

There was a sharp fall in the number of children admitted to hospital with severe asthma after smoke-free legislation was introduced in England, say researchers.

A study showed a 12% drop in the first year after the law to stop smoking in enclosed public places came into force.

Well, actually, it didn’t but I’ll come to that later.

In the meantime, let’s revisit tobacco control’s idea of what is significant and what is not; along with what is solely due to the smoking ban, and what has absolutely nothing to do with it.

You see, Anna ‘pay me and I’ll say what you want’ Gilmore produced a study in 2010 which proved {cough} beyond any doubt that there had been a statistically significant reduction in heart attacks which was entirely due to the triumph of the smoking ban. Here’s what it looked like.

Dramatic, isn’t it?

Whereas, this is what fellow career anti-smoker, Linda Bauld, described as statistically insignificant after being paid £47,000 by the government to do so.

UK Pub Closures 2004-2009

Pub closures, you see, had nothing to do with the ban whatsoever. In fact, they haven’t even been closing at all according to ASH.

However, the pro-tobacco lobby’s claims that the smoking ban has led to pub closures are unfounded. In 2007, the year England went smokefree, the number of licensed premises for “on sales” of alcohol actually increased by 5% and there has been a net increase in the number of people reporting going to pubs since the smokefree law came into effect.

That’s correct. The media; the government who are holding crisis debates on the demise of pubs; the public who see them boarded up on a daily basis; and the BBPA who track the numbers, are all deluded. It’s just a dream.

So back to today’s big news.

Here is what that dramatic reduction in “children admitted with severe asthma” looks like (from the report, not the press release Brimelow churned out). For your safety, please hold onto a fixture or fitting in case this knocks you sideways.


A bit disappointed? Hey, don’t blame me, I just pass on this stuff.

You see, contrary to Brimelow’s artless reportage, there wasn’t a drop at all. There was merely a slight deviation from what some highly-partial professional tobacco controller had predicted (and even that doesn’t show a significant reduction). And who was this tobacco controller?

Dr Glantz supervised the statistical analysis, interpreted the findings, reviewed and revised the manuscript, and approved the final manuscript as submitted.

Yes, it’s the smoke-obsessed aircraft mechanic Stanton Glantz, arguably the foremost anti-smoking crank on the planet and a man for whom no data is too challenging to torture; no lie too big to tell; and who has never been known to produce anything in the last four decades which could remotely be described as objective science.

His latest wheeze, for example, is to ignore entirely all valid claims as to the effectiveness of e-cigs. Not because they weren’t valid, but simply on the basis that they don’t fit in with his pre-determined agenda on behalf of the pharma industry.

And Brimelow bought it, probably without even a cursory glance at the report or a Google search on its authors. That’s Adam Brimelow of the internationally respected news service known as the BBC.


10 responses to “When Is A Straight Line Not A Straight Line?

  1. When you use acheap, shitty lens on your camera!

  2. Yes, but many of their parents are being diagnosed with mental health problems due to wealfare cuts, bring on the SS I say, their crying for more
    resourses to protect the vunerable so they claim.

  3. I heard this 12% claim on the radio today and didn’t regard it as remotely credible. Does anybody believe what government statisticians say any more? On a daily basis I read that the government ‘under-estimated’ the number of Poles who would immigrate here (they told us 13,000 when in fact it was almost a million). Under-estimate? I can just picture Blair and Campbell saying “What shall we tell the suckers – let’s just pluck a figure out of the air – they’ll believe whatever we tell them”. Sadly they were right. And the people still fall for it.

  4. Don’t believe them, i have friends in the right places, they are lying, at one
    point there was 3 in every 10 under mental health care at anyone time, then
    they bring in laws to make it impossible for them to get jobs, with them and
    a 11 million people with police records of working age, the only hope of
    keeping the country working is immigrants, the rest are unemployable,
    due to blunket legislation, just look at the lawyers figures in relation to tribunals
    in respect of the politically detained, they are only a tiny percentage of
    actual patients as such. More accurate, see the buget for 2009 to 2012.

  5. The Poles are not the problem at all, re immigration. They have, substantively, disappeared as a “population” which is identifiable at all. This is what we want immigrants to actually do. And they did it in about five years. A million: just think of it. Gone, and earning livings, buying houses, paying taxes (not that that’s good in itself) and so on.

    There are seven on our own road here, within 100 yards, and you’d never know if Yoo Wazz Frum Summat-else (like London), even knowing them as neighbours as one does (the Chimpanzee Type-Writers in the Nissen hut love them, for they ask (and advise) about computer fixes, and lend and borrow 6-metre VGA cables.)

  6. I’d forgotten about those ones: probably because they had disappeared even earlier. We knew a few of the Monte-Cassino vets in london, many years ago. You didn’t know unless you peeked at their bookshelves and mantlepiece photos.

  7. Yes you’re right the poles have gone david, I now I live in an area of high
    polish immigration, point of fact, very few are buying houses, in the main
    in this area, they work in part time jobs £70.00 per week, claim TC rent,
    and council tax to the tune of £300,00 per week, bulk earn about £100.00
    and are manual or very semi skilled.

  8. The farmers love them in the east of england, they like cheap labour that
    is subsidised by the tax payer.

  9. i was awre of the smuggling rings at the time, plenty of cheap polish booze
    and fags.