The war on vaping peaked during the Obama administration and though the names behind it were groups you expect to be promoting public health - the U.S. CDC, American Lung Association and more - the funding behind many of those efforts may be two groups that are more interested in promoting nicotine patches and gums for Big Pharma than saving the lives of smokers.

It's a mistake for anyone to undermine a smoking cessation and harm reduction tool and it increasingly looks like it can only be financially motivated. The first component of quitting smoking is obviously desire. You have to want to live more than you want a cigarette. People must be able to endure the physical craving prevalent with both alcohol and cigarettes, and the social aspects, the friend circle and the daily routine parts of it.

The psycho-social aspects are clear, many addicts talk about basically needing to find new friends, but there is no one best approach, while the physical aspects are much the same. Every tool that helps should be available in all cases. Some do fine with gum, some with patches, while some need a ritual like they had with smoking. In all cases, the nicotine is addictive but basically harmless. Numerous studies have shown that.

So why would Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation throw money at some scholars, like vaguely creepy Stan Glantz of University of California, San Francisco(1), which houses the ironically named UCSF Truth Tobacco Industry Documents Library that refuses to make transparent how it is covertly managed by a lawyer and anti-corporate conspiracy theorists from anti-GMO and anti-vaccine groups just over the bridge from them(2).

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation denies it has any involvement with their Big Pharma origins now but oddly the groups using UCSF to smear and libel publicly-funded scientists in America claim everyone who takes money from the "right wing" Koch Foundation (#48 in size, so conservatives are undermining their own corporate conspiracy tales by saying something so small compared to the 47 left-wing foundations ahead of them) is secretly being controlled by hidden Neo-Cons. 

So science is a corporate conspiracy and money is laundered by foundations unless it is the top 50 foundations that donate to left-wing groups? At some point their torturing of logic is just silly, and it is pretty terrible for Bloomberg and Johnson to adopt a 'quit or die' mentality toward smokers - unless smokers buy a corporate product that, surprise, provided all of the money those foundations use to try and control culture.

I support vaping because gums only work for some people, as do patches. Heck, even hypnosis works for some people. And vaping works too. I want all hands on deck ending smoking, I want people to have options.

Why don't the program managers inside Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation?

Despite the conspiracy stories that will be brought up again by the junkyard dogs of the organic and anti-vaccine industries, I don't get many from any of those groups or any vaping or tobacco company. But if any of them want to cut us a check we will put it to good use, 100% of their grant will go to programs, no salaries or offices.

It won't make a bit of difference in what we write and it has complete transparency.

Good luck getting the grifters behind the UCSF Truth Tobacco Industry Documents Library to make that commitment.


(1) The self-proclaimed “Ralph Nader of the anti-tobacco movement” denies all wrongdoing even though the school's internal investigation found he had created an “intimidating and offensive” culture and his lascivious behavior “comprised hostile work environment sexual harassment” and Dr. Neeley was not the only woman to object to his predatory efforts.

The school may have rushed to settle Dr. Neeley's lawsuit because they knew he was going to bring in 120X what they spent, thanks to the federal government believing him over women of color. All he got in the way of correction was a memo in his personnel file - and he had to take sexual harassment training which hopefully covered not making a point of staring at body parts of women you have a power imbalance over. Or anyone else.

(2) All while denying their agenda against the science community has anything to do with their paid work smearing scientists (or in my case, science writers) who object to their Gaslight-ing of evidence and the public. They insist that their corporate funding by competitors of the products they demonize has no impact on their work. Ironically, they insist that is not possible for the science community.