After I typed that, I just realized that the class action lawsuits I was referring to might not be the same than the one mentioned in the OP. What are the details of the Florida class action lawsuit? Do you have a link to an article describing it?
The “extra medical costs” are not paid by the government, but by you and me.
That’s falling into the trap of assuming that it’s the government’s money.
Also, I have not seen that there are “extra medical costs” associated with people who smoke, although the information should be available.
I realize that, Mjollnir, that was actually my point. The government (meaning we the taxpayers) has health care costs associated with diseases caused by smoking. It seems to me more fair that the company profiting from people smoking should be responsible for the consequences, instead of the taxpayers.
Sorry, don’t have any numbers available, but it seems pretty obvious to me, since tobacco is known to increase the likelihood of various types of cancer, heart disease, fetal illnesses, etc…
Satan, to respond to a question in your original post:
1965 is the year in which U.S. Congress passed the Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act, requiring a surgeon general’s warning on cigarette packs.
In 1992, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the 1965 warning labels on cigarette packs do not shield companies from lawsuits.
If found those dates at this web page.
Frontline:Inside the Tobacco Deal:Full Chronology
I don’t think it’s that obvious. We all exit this world feet-first, and those illnesses happen anyway. We just have more years available for them to be happening. More years in which to incur even more costs.
I sgree with this line of thought. People talk about the cost of smoking, but the fact is that it is probably offset by the early exits of smokers who do NOT tax the system from ages 70-90 with a myriad of health problems, but go relatively quickly.
Not that I think this is GOOD or anything - I’m quitting, ain’t I? - but it does show that these stats are not very reliable and probably not looking at every possible angle because we don’t want to think any other way.
I HAVE BEEN SMOKE-FREE FOR:
One week, one day, 19 hours, 32 minutes and 14 seconds.
352 cigarettes not smoked, saving $44.07.
Life saved: 1 day, 5 hours, 20 minutes.
Heart disease is still the number 1 Killer in the US. I would venture a guess that diet and lack of excercise cause more deathes than cigarettes. I am guessing that the next class action will be against the makers of fatty food.
I mean, the beef manufacturers and Dairy farmers never tell you that fat can make you fat. HAng 'em, Kill the dirty BASTARDS! We are too stupid to know what is bad for us! We are not capable of formulating a healthy decision…therefore the sellers of fatty death owe us big time. Reward stupidity, pay my claim!
I realize my post count makes me insignificant, but nobody has yet whined about the cultural meaning.
I do not smoke; I think it stinks. But I am “appalled by the way a culture once noted for its rugged individualism has pusillanimously surrendered to the extremists of the new prohibitionism.” (not my words - Richard John Neuhaus articulates my feeling nicely.)
What I don’t understand is why this whole thing hasn’t made smoking cooler than ever. “Hey, everybody hates smokers. Think I light one up.”
I thought the whole point was to smoke to piss your elders off, to rebel. Is even rebellion suddenly uncool?
Mjollnir and Satan are now arguing that because smokers die quicker, they actually spend less health care dollars than people that live long, and the people that live long will end up dying of the same diseases anyway.
a) I imagine that, for most taxpayers, the majority of contributions (via taxes) to the government are made during the years in which the person is employed, which, on average, is probably something like 20 to 60 years old. So if a person dies at 40 or 50, or is disabled by illness during their working years, then the government loses the tax money it would have gathered if the person had lived to 60 or 65.
b) I’ve read that when a person gets ill at a younger age, they will be able to fight the disease longer. I.e. a 40-year-old with a heart attack will generally live longer afterwards than a 60-year-old with a heart attack, or an 80-year-old with a heart attack. But they will need additional medical care during their surviving years. (Similarly with cancer, a person catching cancer at a younger age will survive longer than an older person catching cancer.) So when people get sick at a younger age, they end up using more health care dollars than if they catch the disease at an older age.
Mr. Zambezi: I agree with you that it would be better if people in developed nations, particularly the USA, had healthier diets. This is a much more complicated , however, because beef and dairy products are not harmful per se, and actually can be valuable contributors to a person’s diet. Whereas nicotine is a poison with no health benefits.
Actually, some studies conclude that nicotine may prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
I might smell like an ashtray. I might have yellow fingers and yellower teeth. I might have to carry a portable oxygen tank around with me. I might even cough up gooey black stuff on a daily basis. But at least I’ll still have my mind!
If you believed in yourself, and tore enough holes
in your pants, there was always a mist-filled alley
right around the corner.
Gaudere, point duly noted. Thank you for the correction. Allow me however to include a few sentences from the article to which you provided a link:
Well, there have been other studies as well; one that analyzed nicotine receptors of alheimer’s patients and another that recorded that mental alertness of alzheimer’s patients improves when given nicotine. It seems like there is some pretty strong evidence out there, although it is not wholly conclusive yet. Researchers are currently looking into nicotine-like drugs for treating Alzheimer’s.
I don’t think this is sufficient to make up for the major harm done by smoking, I’ll agree (my father died a painful, lingering death of smoking-related cancer five years back). However, this is the SDMB; it is our mission to nitpick sweeping statements.
I see what you’re saying, Gaudere, but I prefer to look at the big picture, namely “I’m right, everybody else is wrong.”
How did you quit, Satan?
ETERNITY: SMOKING OR NON SMOKING?
Itchy the flea-filled beagle hound.
Btw, ignore the signature…forgot that I had the smokin’ thing in it…no pun intended.
Prayen’ for ya’(whether you like it or not :D)