"Of course, that's just my opinion, and I may
be full of shit"
- Dennis Miller
Since this opinion was considered in great detail,
it will be difficult to change my mind. However, it's not impossible. I
am always open to reason. I welcome thoughtful, logical, response.
Recorded Oct 14, 1999
Early in October of 1999 I started hearing a number of reports on the news
that Philip Morris had published details on their web page revealing information
about smoking. Most every report seemed to add the opinion
that this was somehow "sleazy", and some sort of technique to avoid paying
the piper. I disagree. Instead, sleazy are the hypocrites that claim they
did not know smoking was deadly, and that have gone after the industry
from the perspective of their "newly enlightened" position. Yes,
the tobacco industry has done its best to improve market share, perhaps
using some questionable marketing techniques, but it is a lie to somehow
imply that the public was mislead into thinking smoking was safe. Everyone
has always known cigarettes are death sticks, just like fast food, alcohol,
So, I visited www.philipmorris.com
to see what the stink was all about. Then, after looking about, I sent
them the following feedback letter:
Hello (please forward where appropriate):
I am a non-smoker, who does not appreciate being bothered by smokers.
However, I am intelligent enough, and educated enough, to appreciate
freedoms. As a result, I fully commend the work that you have presented
offering great depth of information about cigarettes and smoking. There
is nothing I hate more than the stench of lies (not even the stench of
cigarettes), and your pages do a lot to collecting the vast information
that constitutes what truth is known.
While many extremists seem to be slamming you in the news for "too little
to late", I would instead like to commend your work and remind you that
for every vocal critic there are a number of silent individuals. Please
do not be disheartened; your work is very well done.
Moreover, I am in full agreement that everyone already knows smoking
is bad. Your pages will do nothing to damage your market share. Publicly
stating what everyone already knows is the right response to an absurd
attack on your industry (despite it being an industry I do not like).
Finally, I would like to suggest that Philip Morris, or one of your
subsidiaries, consider a new brand "Death", or "Slow Death", in a fully
black box. No joke. I think it would be extremely successful, and would
further go to illustrate the absurdity of the accusations leveled at your
industry. People would buy "Death", because it is a choice, and they would
enjoy expressing that choice blatantly. No, not all smokers would buy it,
but many would. And your critics would find much of their ridiculous argument
diminished (revealed). This is the next step, beyond your informative web
pages, in removing the stench of lies surrounding this issue, and addressing