And here is today’s big surprise. Prepare to be absolutely shocked, because I am sure that this is something that none of you has ever suspected, not even very slightly. Have a look at this. British American Tobacco (BAT), one of the world’s leading suppliers of cigarettes, has been breaking the rules in the Third World by targeting children. Who’d a thought it! With hundreds of people dying from smoking every day, they have to find new smokers to replace them or their customer base will shrink, and who better than children? Get them while they are young. So, it is alleged, they have been advertising tobacco by giving it a positive, cool image – not mentioning that there is nothing cool about lung disease, body odour and breath like a sewer – and by selling cigarettes singly. Only kids buy cigarettes one at a time. When I was at school I remember there was one brand, Woodbines I think or maybe Weights but I’m open to correction, which was available in packs of five, and we schoolboys used to pool our money and buy one of those between two or three of us. I should imagine that children were the most frequent customers for those. They have long been banned in Britain, as far as I know, and there is now talk of banning packs of ten as well and increasing the penalties imposed on people who sell to under 18s. And in most countries in the developed world they have equal, or more severe, restrictions. Take a look at those graphic health warnings on cigarette packs in Australia and Canada sometime. So, if these reports are true, they are off to hook in new smokers, especially kids, in third world countries, where there are fewer or no restrictions, and where such regulations as may exist can be ignored or sidestepped.
The bastards! The sons of bitches! I’m not interested in any “great debate” or “the jury is still out” crap. I am convinced that smoking kills, and people who sell this dangerous drug are pushers plain and simple. Merchants of death may be an overused phrase, but it is still very accurate. I really hate smoking, as only an ex-smoker can hate it. It’s true that people who give it up are the most anti. But how can we stop these people? So many billions who live in the third world will fall easy prey to them unless something is done. And if this report is true, then I can say on the basis of no proof at all but in the certainty that I am right, that all the other tobacco companies are doing exactly the same thing.