10 things e-cigarettes won’t tell you – 10 things – MarketWatch

Note: I’m going to end up fucking swearing a lot and abusing the bold and italics. I do that not to “shout” at you, but because I have a tendency to post the way I would imagine the text would be spoken if narrated out loud. And some of this stuff really demands that kind of inflective emphasis.

(Edit: I decided to dial back the four letter words a bit. I think the edited version still conveys the appropriate feeling, but it was never my intention to offend my readers.)

Second and final prefatory note: This post is going to sound angry. That’s because it is angry. I hope you understand, dear reader, that I’m not angry at you; I’m angry for you. I hope that I’m angry in common cause with you. Vaping saves health and wealth, and it just might save lives, even families. And it’s being lied about. It’s being misrepresented by those who not only claim to know better but whose responsibility it is to know better. That makes me angry. And being nice when things like this come along isn’t putting a dent in the flow of misinformation, disinformation, rumor-mongering and manipulation on the part of self-appointed “authorities” who claim to represent consumers out of one side of their collective mouth while lying to us out the other side.

If coarse language is off-putting to you, this is your stop. If not…

Here we go.

10 things e-cigarettes won’t tell you – 10 things – MarketWatch: “”

(Via Marketwatch.)

Wow. Where to even start with stupidity on this level. Well, I suppose it should be at the beginning.

“They may be safer, but they also threaten to upend decades of anti-smoking efforts.”

You know what the first thing is that occurs to me when I read this complaint? Safety was never the purpose of anti-smoking efforts. Had it been, the author of this article would easily recognize vaping, and the millions of people who have quit smoking by switching to it, as an anti-smoking effort, one of the most devastatingly effective anti-smoking efforts in history.

But it isn’t about safety, is it? It seems clear that it never was. And here we have an admission of that, if only by implication. Let’s dig into these ten things:

“1. “We’re Big Tobacco in disguise.”

Simply, flatly wrong. “Big Tobacco”, meaning the three major makers of cigarettes in the U.S., would constitute RJ Reynolds, Philip Morris/Altria, and Lorillard. Lorillard made its entry into vaping products by purchasing Blu, an existing company. Philip Morris only just introduced its first PV, the Markten, this year. RJ Reynolds Vapor still doesn’t have its own PV products, the Vuse Solo and Vuse System, in national distribution at this time. PVs are not “Big Tobacco in disguise.”

“2. “We can’t promise this won’t kill you.”

Anti-smoking advocates and public-health officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention alike concede that e-cigarettes have fewer toxins than regular cigarettes and none of the tar. But that’s no guarantee e-cigs won’t give you cancer or kill you the way tobacco-burning cigarettes are known to do. While traditional smoke carries nearly 5,000 chemicals, more than 50 of which are carcinogens, e-cigarette vapor appears to have far fewer deadly toxins, says Michael Fiore, a physician and director of the University of Wisconsin’s Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention. Still, a relatively small study of two leading brands of e-cigarettes, the Food and Drug Administration found carcinogens in half of the 18 samples it tested, and one sample contained small amounts of a toxic chemical found in antifreeze. Researchers at the University of California–Riverside recently found that “many of the elements” in e-cig vapor “are known to cause respiratory distress and disease,” and in some cases emitted higher concentrations of the elements than cigarette smoke produced.”

Let’s take these point by point:

First, nobody can promise that anything won’t kill you. I know of a chemical combination that has a 100% mortality rate if breathed for a sufficient duration of time. You call it air. And everyone who has breathed it has or at some point will die. WhoooOOOOOooo!

Second, the study purporting to have found diethylene glycol (the “toxic chemical found in antifreeze”) was a non-repeated occurrence from a scientifically unsound sample size.

Finally, neither of the studies referenced in the above section are cited. That renders that section little better than rumor.

“3. “You didn’t quit smoking.You just think you did.”

Rob Fontano, the owner of an e-cigarette retailer Fort Myers, Fla., says e-cigarettes helped him quit smoking actual cigarettes “cold turkey,” after he’d tried nicotine patches, gum, and prescription Chantix without success. He even says his skin now looks healthier and he can breathe easier at the gym. But his version of “cold turkey” still includes e-cigarettes— which neither anti-smoking advocates nor tobacco companies would call quitting.”

Are personal vaporizers tobacco cigarettes? No, they’re electronics. Do people who use them inhale smoke created through a combustion of tobacco leaves? No, they do not. Does that mean people who no longer smoke combustion-based cigarettes are still smoking combustion-based cigarettes? It does not. What, then, have these people done? They’ve quit smoking.

Finally: How is that not, at least, progress? Even if these neo-Puritan assholes don’t think you quit, shouldn’t they recognize the benefit of you thinking you’ve quit? Of your mental break from the habit of using a burning roll of tobacco and paper? The change in mindset from, “I’m never gonna quit smoking, and you can’t make me!” to “I don’t smoke anymore!” as a change in attitude toward the habit of smoking, for the better?

I don’t think they do. And you know why? Because they don’t give a damn about you or your health. Not really, they don’t. Not really, they don’t. Know what they’re in it for? Getting you to do what they tell you to.

Screw them.

“4. “We’re advertising like it’s 1960 — while we still can.”

And since what they’re advertising is less unhealthy and carries with it the potential to save lives, they should. The Big Tobacco companies destroyed the health, lives and families of so many people, it’s only right that those bastards make up for it by using those same tools to help people get off the deadly product they used to hook smokers to in the first place.

Just don’t use cartoons or otherwise peddle PVs to kids.

“5. “We defy categorization.”

The e-cigarette industry says it welcomes regulation, but it’s also shown some ambivalence: On the one hand, it doesn’t want to be grouped with cigarettes and tobacco, because that would entail restrictions on who can buy them and how they can be advertised and because it has staked its success on being an alternative to those products. On the other hand, it doesn’t want to put its product on the shelf until it can be proven safe enough to get its own category. The industry would have to go through years of trials and FDA approval as a drug or drug-delivery device, effectively taking e-cigs off the market entirely, says Criss, the head of the the ECIG trade group. “I don’t really feel that it’s a tobacco product,” he says, “that’s maybe a compromise position that we maybe don’t think of as ideal.” (Altria, however, says its e-cigarette meets the definition of a tobacco product.)”

Frankly, I don’t give a shriveled rodent scrotum what Altria says. Unless they’re actually stuffing tobacco bits into the electronics, PVs are not tobacco products, any more than Bloody Marys should be put in the produce aisle.

“6. “We look like cigarettes, but please don’t tax us like cigarettes.”

E-cigarettes’ biggest advantage over traditional cigarettes is their price, market analysts say. Regular cigarettes carry high excise taxes of up to about 50% of their retail price; e-cigarettes, for the most part, are currently only subject to sales tax, says Wells Fargo tobacco analyst Herzog.

The price of an e-cigarette, meanwhile, is hard to compare with that of a regular cigarette, as the electronic devices are sold to be either disposable or refillable and rechargeable. But assuming that it takes 1.25 e-cigarettes (or cartridges) to deliver the nicotine in a pack of cigarettes, and the average e-cigarette costs about $7, Herzog estimatesthat e-cigarettes are nearly 8% cheaper than cigarettes.“E-cigs are definitely more affordable than conventional cigarettes,” she says, adding that e-cigarettes’ price per usage falls with greater consumption.”

First of all:

Tobacco Cigarette Really

Does that look like a tobacco cigarette to you? See, call me wacky, but I don’t think it does.

Second, vaping should be cheaper than smoking. If, you know, you actually give a damn about health or safety. If you really care about saving lives, then you’ll want to make switching from the more dangerous habit to the less dangerous habit a top priority. You’ll bust your ass to make it easier, cheaper and more attractive.

That is, if you’re not, in fact, just after more money and more control over other peoples’ lives.

“7. “Kids love us.”

If there’s one thing that the e-cigarette industry and the public health community agree on, it’s that e-cigarettes are not for children. Kids, on the other hand, seem to disagree, judging by the surging interest in e-cigs among adolescents and teens. The proportion of middle-school and high-school kids who have used e-cigarettes doubled to nearly 7%, or almost 2 million students, between 2011 and 2012, according to a recent report by the CDC. What’s more, “there’s a substantial concern that e-cigarettes will serve as a gateway product to nicotine addiction for a new generation of young people,” Fiore says. Indeed, more than 76% of students currently using e-cigarettes also reported smoking regular cigarettes. (E-cigarette defenders say the statistic can be interpreted the opposite way, too, illustrating that students who already smoked are switching to e-cigs.)”

This, as I point out in my book, Smokeless, is based on utter crap. First, the CDC study measured experimentation, not usage. The author of this Marketwatch article is using the same sloppy, slanted journalism as everyone else. It is at least something of a redemption on her part that she condescended to at least acknowledge the counter-argument, however.

“8. “We’re bringing smoking back inside…”

As new bans have pushed cigarette smokers ever further out into the cold — often as far as 25 feet from the entrance of restaurants, bars, and even outdoor spaces like parks and beaches — e-cigarettes have found a haven indoors. The devices, which emit vapor that is less noticeable and odorous than smoke, and don’t use a flame or smoldering butts that could pose a fire hazard, have largely been tolerated if not fully welcomed in places where smoking is banned, including workplaces. Some e-cigarette users reportedly even took drags while attending a recent New York City council meeting about raising the purchasing age of cigarettes as well as e-cigs. Indeed, part of the allure of e-cigarettes is that people can use them discreetly, without having to brave the cold or stink up their home, says Herzog: “There are a lot of smoking bans, and it’s easier to use these in many places that are difficult to smoke. There’s no real smell.”

Anti-smoking advocates, however, argue that observers can’t tell the difference between electronic cigarettes and the real thing. Inviting e-cigs into no-smoking zones threatens to undo public-health progress in making tobacco taboo, says Feinberg of the NYC Coalition for a Smoke-Free City.”

And there again we have that admission. They don’t care that it’s safe. Or, to be generous, they don’t care whether it’s safe or not. They’re pissed that people are rejecting their social conditioning. They’re vexed that adults are making their own personal choices regardless of these legions of dictatorial fucking Mary Poppins wannabes trying to run other peoples’ lives.

I say again: To hell with these morons. If it poses less risk to me, and none to thee — as at least one study has found — then my habits, and yours, are none of their business.

“9. “… and back into aircraft.”

Lately, airlines have had to chastise not just passengers, but their own flight attendants for smoking — er, “vaping”— e-cigarettes on planes.”

Ms. Wieczner, this is personal, from me to you: You’re an idiot. You probably think that’s beyond the pale. I think what you just tried to pull right there is beyond the pale. Call us even. You spent time researching the difference between smoke and vapor. You proved that all throughout the body of your article up to this point. The only conclusion I can draw from your attempt to conflate the two is that you’re either too stupid to understand what you read and reported, or you think your readers are so stupid that they won’t notice when you conflate the two terms. So I say again: Idiot.

“10. “E-joints and e-crackpipes are the new e-cig.”

No. the “e-cig” is the “e-cig.” Nothing is the “new” something else. And, I don’t know whether you know this — I rather doubt that you care enough to have done any research on this specific point — but devices like the “Pax” vaporizer work on an entirely different principle from nicotine-centered PVs.

But all of that is really irrelevant when we stop to consider the killer counterargument here: If you can’t tell that somebody’s high on pot, what business is it of yours?

If somebody does manage to vape cannabis, and the cops can’t tell, exactly what is the goddamned problem? There’s no victim. Not only that, but the problem, somehow, is that the crime is undetectable? How is it even a crime, then, other than the “crime” of people defying “authority”?

So there you have it. Only I think we need to retitle the article now.

I’ve got it:

10 Lies The Control Freaks Won’t Stop Telling You.


  • Kelly Bertram

    Fantastic article! Keep up the good work, John. I know that I appreciate your passion on this subject. Hopefully others do as well.


  • spinfuel community admin

    Excellent piece John! I hope it does some good. Like you, we’re getting fed up with all the misinformation out there. Keep it up!


  • Stephen Johnson

    BRAVO! and seconded.


  • I feel angry furious n frustrated just like you do! And im sures millions more are with us too. I have children/teens between ages 10-19which none of have the desire nor have ever tried to tamper or try my ecigs!! Altho they are so thankful their mom was able to quit a 33 yr smoking habit! This article is spot on! I hope you have the ability to speak out on our behalf enough for yr voice to be heard! Thank you my friend! Hang in there as our fight goes on..altho we shudnt have to fight for our right to vape! A maraculous invention that is saving millions of lives everyday!


  • Preach it, Brother! I have no doubt these devices have saved my life, and what’s more they’ve empowered me with the confidence to make other changes in my life to improve my health. Rather than gaining weight after quitting smoking (30 to 40 lbs for each and every failed attempt) I have the energy to engage in physical activities that were impossible for me only 4 years ago, and I am in fact losing weight. E-Cigs are saving my life on two fronts! The nicotine suppresses appetite, and the flavors allow me to indulge my sweet tooth without all those empty calories. Quit or Die? NO. Switch and Live!


  • Bravo!!! Thank you for that THOUGHTFUL and well-thought-out, TRUE article. E-cigs have definitely made me a NON-smoker, and I do (and will continue to) recommend them to anyone and everyone who smokes and shows any interest at all in quitting. Thank you!


  • Summed up a lot of exactly what came to mind when I struggled to read that article. Great job. I don’t see how such terrible journalism makes it on sites like this. It seems nobody takes the time to actually research and dive into this movement beyond simply reciting garbage that everyone else is spewing. And drawing unreasonable conclusions from a worthless CDC study. Maybe some day… In the meantime, vape on!


  • Thank you for a commonsense 10 point argument against that article’s 10 points of nonsense.
    The following is my complete argument and personal story that I send edited versions of to various elected officials when needed. It is an article worthy of publishing, if I do say so myself.

    E-cigarettes have saved my life. I smoked at least two packs of non filter cigarettes everyday for 36 years, from the age of 16 to the age of 52. My health was in decline, and breathing freely was getting harder each day. I tried to quit using various methods including cold turkey, nicotine patches, nicotine gum, nicotine inhalers and even hypnotism. Nothing worked until I tried e-cigarettes last October. I have stayed away from regular cigarettes for almost a year now, with no withdrawal symptoms. I no longer have the phlegm and lung congestion that had developed over the years. My smokers cough is gone completely. I can run and exercise without getting out of breath. I can smell a smoker from twenty feet away now, and it stinks. I’m ashamed to have subjected family, friends and strangers to that smell for so many years. I have gone from the highest nicotine level that is available from e-cig manufacturers, to the lowest. My next step is the 0 nicotine content vapor, and then to quit completely. This is my real life study of the health effects of E Cigarettes, and the only one that counts for me.

    My wife, who has never smoked and hated the smell, now allows me to vape my E-cig in her presence. Even in the car.
    My dog used to flinch when cigarette smoke would accidentally come near him. Now an accidental cloud of vapor doesn’t even phase him.

    Almost one year, and I cannot even entertain the idea of going back to tobacco products. See, that’s the thing. These are not tobacco products. Nicotine is the main addictive ingredient in tobacco, but also occurs naturally in many plants and foods. Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, is also known as Nicotinic Acid and nicotinamide.

    As for the sweet flavored liquids let me say that at the age of 53 I still like candy, cake, ice cream and a host of other flavors that you suggested were only enjoyed by children. These flavors are marketed towards taste buds that we all have, young and old alike. Are Ecigs advertised in teen magazines or alongside Saturday morning cartoons. No, of course not. I personally think that they should not be advertised on TV or in print ads except in the case of adult oriented shows and publications, and I’m not talking about porn either. I think when other smokers see the success of their vaping friends then the product speaks for itself. I think that official age restrictions are a good idea too, but all of the retailers that I know of already have voluntarily put these in place anyway.

    Don’t ruin this for everybody else just because somebody didn’t raise their children correctly. Shifting blame away from oneself is an epidemic in this day and age. The blame goes to the parents for not instilling lasting values in their children, and then to the children who do what they know they shouldn’t do, and then to those unscrupulous enough to buy this product for minors, and then to those unscrupulous enough to sell to minors, and then to marketers who would market to minors. Do not blame manufacturers who make flavors that EVERYBODY loves. I’m 53 and I love sweet flavors. Don’t take away what I love because people won’t control their kids.
    Make laws prohibiting use of, and sale to minors, and make examples out of those who break those laws, but don’t take it away from adults. Minors apparently need a full time nanny, but adults do not.

    I only buy all of my liquids and cartridges from American manufacturers. I agree with not buying Chinese made liquids or cartridges. I personally do not purchase anything that I know has some Chinese connection. We’ve had lead paint in children’s toys, poisoned drywall, poisoned pet treats, and SARS that have all come out of China, so forgive me if I’m leery of Chinese products.

    The low risks of e-cigarettes is supported by research done by Dr. Siegel of Boston University, Dr. Eissenberg of Virginia Commonwealth, Dr Maciej L Goniewicz of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute,Dr. Laugesen of Health New Zealand, Dr. Igor Burstyn of Drexel University, and by the fact that the FDA testing, in spite of its press statement, failed to find harmful levels of carcinogens or toxic levels of any chemical in the vapor.

    Please read this report by Drexel University Prof. Igor Burstyn, who found no apparent concern for bystanders exposed to second hand E-Cigarette vapor.

    Also please read,



  • Oh my man, you have just earned a follower. Proof that your effort was excellent: I feel relieved of how F#$&ing angry that article made me, and I was unaware that I had repressed said anger.


  • blondeambition3

    That’s everything I would have liked to have said…. sans the cussing… LOL



  • Excellent article! I have been smoke free for over 7 months now, only vaping worked for me!


  • Thank you for a well written article and a position against stupidity. It’s hard to fix stupid!


  • Overall great rebuttal, however just one minor critique: while most cannabis-focused PVs work differently from nicotine PVs, there are medical cannabis dispensaries selling MMJ “juice” and vapes in much the same way.

    It’s not common but it is out there, and helps patients by giving them an alternative to inhaling harmful smoke.


    • John Castle

      Having done some research myself, I’ve heard of these ‘tinctures’ – but what I’ve heard about them is that even they are so thick that they shorten the lifespans of atomizer coils to unacceptably low durations. I’d consider them to still be at the “in development” or “needs work” stage. The average lifetime of a disposable atomizer coil head for a clearomizer is 10-14 days. When there’s a cannabinoid tincture you can put in a nicotine-eliquid-centric clearomizer that will still see a single atomizer head have that 10-14 day lifespan, then I’d say it’s something worth talking about.

      Thanks for the feedback, and I’m glad you enjoyed the post! 🙂


  • Raven A. R.

    Bravo Mr. Castle!

    I am 34 years old. I started smoking back in 1995 out of stress of working, and going to school. It was something that I didnt advertize at that age, and even my own mother didnt know till I turned 17.
    When I became older I decided that I needed to quit. Nothing helped though. Not the Army, patches, gum, inhalers, hypnosis, or meditation. I seriously thought that I was going to be screwed. In April of 2009 I was introduced to the E-Cigarette. Don’t get me wrong though, I was skeptical at first. I mean, how can this dinky tube with a blue LED on the end help me quit? I gave it a shot, and was very intrigued, but I was in shock over the start up price. So I figured that I would find a kit online, and it came within a few days. My first kit was the DSE-901, and my first bottle of juice was from Johnson’s Creek (before they changed their formula over the summer). I still had a carton of Pall Mall full flavor 100’s that was nearly full. I gave it to a neighbor, and made the full transition to vaping that day.

    Almost 5 years later and I am still going strong. I have lived though the scares, I have fought beside other vapers to keep vaping from being banned. Some we won, and some were a draw. Even my employer applauds me for quitting smoking, and allows me to vape indoors. Why? Productivity. The average smoker has 1 cigarette an hour. Considering that was about 15 mins an hour for me (remember I used to smoke 100’s), and that is 8 hours a day, that is 2 hours that I am not actually working, but smoking, and getting paid to do it. Employers across the nation should be thrilled to hire vapers.

    Vaping also helps our economy, local juice vendors, and manufactures are popping up everywhere. When we buy local or at least out of our own country we are helping our economy, making it stronger, and producing more jobs.


  • Thank you for writing this commentary on the Market Watch article. I was unable to respond since I had to open a new account with the website. More people = More advertising dollars, and I didn’t want them to be rewarded to spread any more lies.

    I have an entire folder full of studies saying how effective and less harmful vaping is to the user and bystander to use when I send mail to local, state, and federal legislators. Keep fighting the good fight, and we will prevail.


  • I was an OTR trucker for over thirty years until one day my wife made me go to the hospital because of the severe swelling and pain in my legs. That was on December 18, 2010 and since that day, I have not touched a cigarette again. As it turned out, I had blood clots in both of my legs and one in my lung, so apparently, I dodged a bullet and lived to tell about it. I also was diagnosed with COPD, DVT and Diabetes. Basically, that combined, ended my career and am now medically retired, damn it! I still wanted that cigarette, but no one would let me have one. My wife told me of the Ecigs, which I did see at truck stops all up and down the East Coast so I decided to try them, and am still “smoking” them today. My wife quit smoking five years before I did and so did my daughter. She was pregnant and told her husband that he could not smoke anywhere near their child after the birth so he too decided to go to the ecigs. Now we both have no problems with anyone in our households with the ecigs and all of my doctors are also happy with my choice I just know that some bleeding heart liberal moron who does not like seeing happy or contented people will try anything to make vaporers unhappy. Such as taxing or prohibiting these ecigs inside buildings or anywhere else that tobacco cigarettes are not permitted. Anyway, I say to hell with all those morons and vape on.


  • P.S. I have not had the urge to smoke another regular cigarette for three years and love it. These DO help people quit regardless of what the government says. If they can not make any money out of something, they do not want to allow it. That is their way of doing things, so be prepared for taxing


  • steve albrecht

    Bravo sir great article


  • Well Said… Couldn’t have done it better myself. Keep fighting the good fight and VAPE ON!


  • good article it should be read by every smoker


  • Thanks for this article. Ecigs helped me quit after 22 years of literally being a slave to cigarettes. I have been able to reduce my nicotine level intake to a 3 mg. and my emphysema got better and my lungs cleared within 3 months of using the ecig instead.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s