Was anyone else really disappointed in this installment? Maybe it’s because the issue of second-hand smoke has more relevance to me than some of the other topics they’ve covered so far (alien abduction, end-of-the-world heysteria, etc.) but this is the first time they really struck me as being underhanded in their treatment. Their big gun was attempting to discredit the EPA and WHO studies or say the studies don’t say what smoking-restriction proponents say they do. Fine, I’m all about debunking the claims if the science is bad or being misused. But don’t then try to say the data is no good by (repeatedly) saying that a “federal judge threw it out of court.” Blatant appeal to authority, and it doesn’t help matters when the judge in question is sitting in a courtroom in Raleigh-Durham North Carolina, the heart of tobacco country. Did anyone happen to catch the caption on the case being cited? I couldn’t make it out.
Also disappinted in the repeated slippery slope arguments included, mostly in the taped comments from interviewees but some from Penn as well. One guy in particular said something about “will they tell me I can’t smoke a cigar in my own house?” Classic slippery slope.
Gotta say I was bothered as well by dismissing the increase in risk to non-smokers from second-hand smoke as “statistically insignificant.” That may well be true, but the two extra people who won’t die because they weren’t exposed to the smoke probably won’t find anything insignificant about it.
Plus, hey, even if there’s no health risk at all from second-hand smoke, it still reeks to high heaven and to be fair I have to disclose that I’m all in favor of restricting smoking in all public places. Smoke in your house if you must but nowhere else.
Make the points against second-hand smoke on the merits but I expect better than this bullshit from people out to expose bullshit.