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Climate change deniers follow Big Tobacco strategy

2014-07-30T00:00:00Z 2014-07-30T09:34:08Z Climate change deniers follow Big Tobacco strategy The Billings Gazette
July 30, 2014 12:00 am

"I do not believe tobacco is addictive." "Cigarettes are no more addictive than coffee, tea or Twinkies." — So spoke the seven subpoenaed U.S. tobacco executives to the U.S. Senate on April 14, 1994.

The video appeared key to a Florida jury's April 20 award of $16 million in compensation and $23 billion in punitive damages for the death of Michael Johnson Sr.

Guess the jury felt somewhat strongly about R J Reynold's "failure to warn" of the addictiveness and lethality of tobacco.

Echoing Big Tobacco strategy and his own earlier letter, David Klein's latest denial (July 20 letter) could have been written by McCann-Erickson, Tobacco's flack-house (presently Big Coal's and Big Oil's). The fingerprints match:

1. Accuse opponents of fabricating facts while wantonly selecting your own "facts" and comparison intervals.

2. Dismiss and mischaracterize your critic as "fear-mongering," "intentionally deceptive." The 1950's Birch Society at its best.

If Admiral David Titley's call (July 8 guest opinion) for CO2 mitigation is wrong, he's in fair company: The American Academy of Science, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, The Royal Society and 98 percent of scientists worldwide. Check who retains the other 2 percent. Understand the difference between "climate" and "weather."

Tobacco use injured and killed mere millions. Human-caused global warming imperils every animal, human and government on earth, and we haven't 20 years to reach a verdict and act.

Charlie Donnes


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