Friday, 12 August 2016

WHO bans whole countries from its jamboree

The WHO's latest clandestine tobacco control meeting is due to take place in New Delhi in November. Readers may recall that the last shindig (in Moscow) saw a blanket ban on everybody from Interpol to the media - not to mention industry and the public - attending a conference that is paid for by the taxpayer and aims to change government policy.

According to the Huffington Post, the WHO's paranoid obsession with secrecy and censorship will plumb new depths in India as they intend to ban whole nations from attending...

In a document obtained from the FCTC, the organizers ask for support to “ensure the exclusion of representatives and officials from...fully or partially state-owned tobacco industries, including state tobacco monopolies.” Specifically, the FCTC hopes to ban certain “appointed and elected officials from executive, legislative and judicial branches” from the meeting.

This effort to exclude delegates with associations with tobacco production is so broad that it will almost certainly prohibit finance ministers, economic development secretaries, public health officials, and even presidents and prime ministers representing countries that operate state-owned tobacco growing or manufacturing operations, or engage in marketing and trade efforts.

This could mean that nations which account for more than a third of the global population will not be represented...

As a result, countries including China, Cuba, Egypt, Bulgaria, Thailand and even India, the convention’s host country, may have a hard time having delegates approved to attend the event and vote on issues that impact their citizens.

Utter insanity. In politics, it is usually the way that large, official agencies take a sober and restrained view of things while extremism breeds at the margins. The opposite is true in 'public health' where the WHO attracts the most fanatical and least accountable zealots and it is left to domestic organisations to take the edge off the madness.

So, for example, while governments try to mitigate the impact of anti-smoking policies on the black market, the people in the WHO bunker imagine they can eradicate the illicit tobacco trade.

And while governments seek to make health policy without excessive industry involvement, the WHO not only bans industry employees from observing proceedings which directly affect them, but bans everyone but a select handful of true believers from being in the room.

As I said back in 2012...

This is madness. Is there any organisation these maniacs do not suspect are 'front groups' for Big Backy? The real issue here is not allowing the industry—or Interpol—to engage, it is that no opposing views are allowed whatsoever. I don't imagine that the industry necessarily represents the views of its customers, but they represent them better than the people who hate the customers, hate the industry and hate the product. Ideally, I'd like to see the tobacco control "community" invite smokers to their conferences and ask them how they feel about higher taxes and outdoor smoking bans, but they never do. I can't think why.

The result of excluding everybody except fellow fanatics is that you end up with retarded and delusional policies which only make sense at two in the morning when they are being discussed by monomaniacs in the hotel bar.

Now, this corrupt agency wants to extend their prohibition to true believers who happen to come from countries where the state is involved in tobacco production. They have completely lost the plot. Can we stop giving them our money now, please?

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