Only about 1/6th of the world bans smoking and a new paper in The Lancet seeks to increase that, and implied causality is the way to do it.

Implied causality is fine, of course. No one knew smoking was bad until there was implied causality and then real causality, but in the culture war that seeks to control choice, population statistics are being used to sillier and sillier effect and it begins to border on pseudoscience, like third-hand smoke, and then sociology, like that banning smoking will cut premature births by 10 percent.

To do so, they picked data from parts of North America and Europe where smoking bans have been introduced and then use claims and estimates (160,000 people estimated killed by second-hand smoke, which would be fine except there are zero actual deaths that can be attributed to second-hand smoke) and then estimate second-hand smoke also causes birth defects, stillborn birth and premature birth. asthma and lung infections.

To make their claim they pulled statistics from 2.5 million births. Then they determined how many premature births and birth defects were and any positive curve was linked to smoking.


In the quest to turn epidemiology into sociology, lead author Dr. Jasper Been of the University of Edinburgh's Centre for Population Health Sciences, says, "Our research shows that smoking bans are an effective way to protect the health of our children. These findings should help to accelerate the introduction of anti-smoking legislation in areas not currently protected."