Cigarette smoking is down, but not out


One of the big changes that has taken place during my lifetime is the decline of cigarette smoking.

When I was a boy, starting to smoke cigarettes was like learning to drive a car—a normal part of growing up.  Boys and young men such as myself who didn’t smoke were regarded as eccentric.

Now cigarette smokers are like a persecuted minority.   The campaign against smoking, and the harassment of smokers (without ever making tobacco illegal), has changed behavior.  This is not something that I would have expected 50 years ago.

While the tobacco industry is down, it is not out.   Americans still smoke more than 1,000 cigarettes a year per person, which seems to me like a large number.

More importantly, there are big markets overseas for tobacco products.  The tobacco industry is trying to use international trade treaties to prevent foreign countries from accomplishing what the United States did


The young and the poor are keeping big American tobacco alive by Roberto O. Ferdman for the Washington Post.

Tobacco Deaths, TPP and the “Trade” Courts by Gaius Publius for naked capitalism.

Meet the New Marlboro Spokesman: Jeff, the Diseased Lung in a Cowboy Hat by Chris Moran for Consumerist.

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