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FDA's Censorship Of E-Cigarette Information


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#1 Ares

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Posted 17 May 2016 - 08:54 PM

This is a great article on the subject of censorship of information everyone should have access to.

 

http://www.forbes.co...n/#5a4f5aff2b6b

 

 

 

The e-cigarette regulations that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) unveiled last week pose a grave threat to products that have the potential to dramatically reduce smoking-related disease and death. The most obvious problem for the e-cigarette industry is that manufacturers of vaping equipment and e-liquids must persuade the FDA that allowing their products to remain on the market is “appropriate for the protection of public health”—a challenge that will be prohibitively expensive for all but the biggest companies and may prove impossible even for them. A lawsuit filed this week by Nicopure Labs, which sells e-liquids and vaping hardware, highlights another troubling aspect of the FDA’s regulations: censorship of potentially lifesaving information about e-cigarettes.

Even if a few companies survive the shakeout caused by the FDA’s onerous regulations, they will not be allowed to tell consumers the truth about their products. According to the FDA, any intimation that noncombustible, tobacco-free e-cigarettes are safer than the conventional, tobacco-burning kind—which they indisputably are—transforms them into “modified risk tobacco products,” which can be marketed only with prior approval. To get the FDA’s permission, an applicant must demonstrate that its product will not only “significantly reduce harm and the risk of tobacco-related disease to individual tobacco users” but also “benefit the health of the population as a whole, taking into account both users of tobacco products and persons who do not currently use tobacco products.”


The upshot is that any e-cigarette company selling its products as a less hazardous alternative to the real thing would render them “adulterated,” inviting FDA seizure. That could happen even if a company truthfully described its product as “smokeless” or “smoke-free.” The FDA says it will “evaluate an [e-cigarette] manufacturer’s use of ‘smokeless’ or ‘smoke-free’ (and similar descriptive terms) on a case-by-case basis.” The FDA also looks askance at e-cigarette manufacturers who “advertise that [their products] do not contain tobacco”—a perfectly accurate statement, albeit a potentially confusing one in light of the agency’s arbitrary decision to treat e-cigarettes as “tobacco products.” The agency’s rationale for applying that label to products that contain no tobacco is that the nicotine in e-cigarettes is derived from tobacco, an argument that also turns nicotine gum, patches, lozenges, sprays, and inhalers into tobacco products.


If e-cigarette companies are asking for trouble merely by accurately describing their products, it should go without saying that they are not allowed to talk about the main advantage of vaping: It is something like 95% less hazardous than smoking because it exposes consumers to far fewer toxins and carcinogens in far lower doses. Even a straightforward chemical comparison of the aerosol produced by an e-cigarette and the smoke produced by a tobacco cigarette is forbidden, lest it lead consumers to the accurate conclusion that they can dramatically reduce the health risks they face by vaping instead of smoking. In other words, the FDA is actively suppressing truthful information that would encourage people to make healthier choices.

Nicopure’s lawsuit argues that the FDA’s censorship “violates the First Amendment by prohibiting manufacturers, including Nicopure, from making truthful and nonmisleading statements regarding vaping devices, e-liquids, and related products.” Although the FDA dismisses First Amendment concerns about its regulations, it seems to me that Nicopure has a strong case. The Supreme Court has arbitrarily declared that “commercial speech” receives less First Amendment protection than other kinds of expression. But restrictions on what businesses say while trying to sell people stuff still must meet a pretty strict test: As long as the speech is not misleading and concerns legal activity, regulations must be narrowly tailored to directly advance a substantial government interest.

 

 


 


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#2 sillyrabbitcubiesR4us

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Posted 17 May 2016 - 11:36 PM

Very interesting read for sure. It sucks how our government wants to hide behind lies and forces companies to slump to their standards just to stay in business. I only vape occasionally, but either way I never mistook it as a safer alternative, since no one ever really listed their ingredients to begin with. There should be a halfway point, but as with all matters in the US, it's either black or white.



#3 SteampunkScientist

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 07:33 AM

I hate these fucking agencies! If it's run by the government it inevitably turns into a bunch of fuck tards with a superiority complex. The fact being that most of the people running these agencies are pathetic and stupid, jealous of others success. "Lois Learner" for example, or the head of the FDA "Michael Taylor" (previously with Monsanto....yeah, nuff said).

So what we can do is post this information everywhere! The FDA can't stop me from talking about it, I don't manufacturer e-cigerette products. Each of us can do it until it becomes common knowledge and then these companies don't have to.

Edited by SteampunkScientist, 22 May 2016 - 07:38 AM.


#4 TVCasualty

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 08:31 AM

From what I've read, getting FDA compliance costs between $10,000 and $100,000 per product.

 

So enforcing such a requirement will put all but the largest companies out of business, as intended. It's kind of ironic (but not a surprise) that regulatory Agencies are so easily co-opted from being watchdogs into becoming de facto protection rackets helping maintain the dominance of the very companies they are supposed to be regulating.

 

As soon as I hear about stuff like this, I immediately start thinking about ways to circumvent it (just because). So I imagine e-juice vendors will do things like obtain compliance for a single product (namely their base formula; just their blend of VG and PG with various concentrations of nicotine, and without any flavorings) while coincidentally selling a large selection of "liquid potpourri concentrates" that are "not intended for human consumption."

 

A handy website backed by such vendors could host forums featuring "potpourri recipes" that duplicate existing e-juice flavors (which already exist, more or less), so all a customer has to do is buy the FDA-compliant e-juice base and the "potpourri concentrates" specified by their favorite recipe and add them to the base in the appropriate amounts.

 

It might even make the cost of e-juice go down since the customers would be mixing the flavors (sparing companies the labor and packaging expenses).

 

Heck, it worked for switchblades (which are illegal to sell assembled in most jurisdictions, but sending mail-order switchblade kits to such locations is legal).

 

If personal freedom came in a box, the outside would read: Some assembly required! Reb


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#5 SteampunkScientist

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 10:30 AM

I love it TV! Laissez nous faire!

Hands off my life, my liberty, and my fucking property!!! May those of oppression in the government be crushed under the evil of their own making!

Your switchblade example reminds me of fully automatic weapons, which are illegal but in which you can buy every part but the receiver which you can make yourself on a 3d printer.

Edited by SteampunkScientist, 22 May 2016 - 10:32 AM.

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#6 TVCasualty

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 05:55 AM

I love it TV! Laissez nous faire!

Hands off my life, my liberty, and my fucking property!!! May those of oppression in the government be crushed under the evil of their own making!

Your switchblade example reminds me of fully automatic weapons, which are illegal but in which you can buy every part but the receiver which you can make yourself on a 3d printer.


Heck, that's still cheaper and easier to accomplish with a bench-top mill-lathe from Harbor Freight...

Edited by TVCasualty, 23 May 2016 - 05:55 AM.

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#7 SteampunkScientist

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 07:03 AM

Yes, and much stronger than 3d plastic.
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