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Loose rivets
1st Dec 2006, 15:01
A clip from an article in the NYT today by a professor Robert N Proctor. Mmmm, don't get any better do it? They knew by 1960 that it was there.



"How much polonium is in tobacco? In 1968, the American Tobacco Company began a secret research effort to find out. Using precision analytic techniques, the researchers found that smokers inhale an average of about .04 picocuries of polonium 210 per cigarette. The company also found, no doubt to its dismay, that the filters being considered to help trap the isotope were not terribly effective. (Disclosure: I’ve served as a witness in litigation against the tobacco industry.)

A fraction of a trillionth of a curie (a unit of radiation named for polonium’s discoverers, Marie and Pierre Curie) may not sound like much, but remember that we’re talking about a powerful radionuclide disgorging alpha particles — the most dangerous kind when it comes to lung cancer — at a much higher rate even than the plutonium used in the bomb dropped on Nagasaki. Polonium 210 has a half life of about 138 days, making it thousands of times more radioactive than the nuclear fuels used in early atomic bombs.

We should also recall that people smoke a lot of cigarettes — about 5.7 trillion worldwide every year, enough to make a continuous chain from the earth to the sun and back, with enough left over for a few side-trips to Mars. If .04 picocuries of polonium are inhaled with every cigarette, about a quarter of a curie of one of the world’s most radioactive poisons is inhaled along with the tar, nicotine and cyanide of all the world’s cigarettes smoked each year. Pack-and-a-half smokers are dosed to the tune of about 300 chest X-rays.

Is it therefore really correct to say, as Britain’s Health Protection Agency did this week, that the risk of having been exposed to this substance remains low? That statement might be true for whatever particular supplies were used to poison Mr. Litvinenko, but consider also this: London’s smokers (and those Londoners exposed to secondhand smoke), taken as a group, probably inhale more polonium 210 on any given day than the former spy ingested with his sushi.

No one knows how many people may be dying from the polonium part of tobacco. There are hundreds of toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke, and it’s hard to sort out how much one contributes compared to another — and interactive effects can be diabolical."

bar fly
1st Dec 2006, 15:17
Great, another reason why the ban can't come soon enough for me. Not bothered at all about smokers killing themselves. Anyone know what the actual date for a total ban in public places in England will be? When the news came out I thought it mentioned early 07, no? That's the reason I post rather than to start up the old smoker versus normal person debate again.

hobie
1st Dec 2006, 15:26
Anyone know what the actual date for a total ban in public places in England will be?

Smoking in enclosed public places will be banned in England from 1 July next year, the government has announced.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/6196910.stm

bar fly
1st Dec 2006, 15:54
Thanks.


Not till July :(

tony draper
1st Dec 2006, 16:00
Buggah! I berra not tell yers about why its used in toothpaste then.
:uhoh:

bar fly
1st Dec 2006, 16:06
I say ban toothpaste from being used in enclosed public places. :E

frostbite
1st Dec 2006, 17:25
As a smoker, I really don't mind all this anti-tobacco hype.

Except, the two things that really annoy me:-

The hugely cynical tax increases which are just another revenue raising excuse, and

the hypocrisy of not equally condemning alcohol and the effects thereof, which have far wider ranging potential dangers to the user and third parties.

Mr Lexx
1st Dec 2006, 18:06
If the powers that be were so concerned for peoples health they would ban smoking outright.......Ah, that would necessitate a 2p rise in income tax. I forgot about that little fact.

esmozz
1st Dec 2006, 18:24
So how come you don’t drop dead after a single cigarette then? Mainly because .04 picocuries is sod all. I’ve just worked out its 0.001 Bq. A quick google shows that the radioactivity of your average human is 7000 bq.

Of course the dose received is much more complicated to work out and polonium is an alpha emitter which, in the case of cigarette smoke you breath in but my same google search reveals that the air in many European homes is radioactive to the tune of 30,000 Bq, mostly due to radon gas which we also breath in. And what’s one of the decay products of radon? Polonium.

We all know cigarettes are bad for you but I think the point here is that with respect to the radioactive and toxic effects of polonium the levels in cigarettes are so low as to be swamped by the natural environment.

Sounds like a bit of scaremongering to me.

tinpis
1st Dec 2006, 20:47
Didnt think toothpaste was used in Britain? :}

terryJones
2nd Dec 2006, 00:05
How do you light the toothpaste Tony?
As an Ex smoker I am not going to say BAN ALL SMOKING EVERYWHERE, but I will admit that personally I wish this ban had been in force 20 years ago.
(2years, 1 month and about 25 days without my Golden Virginia fix...)

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
2nd Dec 2006, 01:09
I say ban toothpaste from being used in enclosed public places. :}

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
2nd Dec 2006, 01:18
about 5.7 trillion [cigarettes] worldwide every year, enough to make a continuous chain from the earth to the sun and back,Maybe ... if they were each about 170 foot long :8

jet_noseover
2nd Dec 2006, 01:26
I say ban toothpaste from being used in enclosed public places. :}

Uhmmm, mr Ar.....gh
Seems - it already has been banned all together at all places.................in England that is...
:}

Two's in
2nd Dec 2006, 17:32
Condemning alcohol on the same basis as tobacco usage only applies to those people who spit beer over their fellow drinkers in the pub, not an insignificant number after 10pm, but hardly the basis of an outright ban.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
2nd Dec 2006, 18:06
What about the ones who piss in shop doorways? :*

SLFguy
2nd Dec 2006, 18:06
Condemning alcohol on the same basis as tobacco usage only applies to those people who spit beer over their fellow drinkers in the pub, not an insignificant number after 10pm, but hardly the basis of an outright ban.

I agree - I often have a couple of Marlboros too many and go and knock seven shades of sh*te out of some unsuspecting soul.

:hmm:

tony draper
2nd Dec 2006, 18:57
Hmmm,one is oft puzzles by the cousins obsession with English teeth,could it be perchance the deep rooted trauma of knowing the first President after their rebellion had wooden teeth?
:rolleyes:

Two's in
2nd Dec 2006, 22:20
TD,

The cousins' obsession with teeth is driven by the fact that over here, they are a "Combat Indicator" of social standing. People would rather sell their Grandmother than miss the chance for a polish, whitening, straightening, crowning, removing, replacing or coating of the old gnashers. That way you know that people who have film star pearly whites clearly have money to spend on teeth, otherwise you must be poor. I must confess, I do notice European teeth a lot more than I used to, and in business, it can give a unfavorable impression if you have a mouth full of black misshapen stumps at random angles. Shallow - yes, Superficial - yes, but that's the way it is. The classic overbite (like Plug or Goofy) of our inbred Royalty is a standing, but unspoken, joke over here.

tony draper
2nd Dec 2006, 23:24
We know all about old Geordie Washington here,after all he hails from about four miles from where one sits,Washington Old Hall, his family seat, from which incidently they had to flee for their lives when they chose the wrong side in our revolution,for they would have surely swung.
Incidently his name is derived from the village of Washington as is your Capital City not tother way round.
:rolleyes:

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
3rd Dec 2006, 14:01
The man Washington was doubtless named for the seat ... but the city in the U.S. was named for the man,That's like Dining Nebraska then, except he was named after a table, not a seat

tony draper
3rd Dec 2006, 15:21
One wonder who Wankers Corner Oregon was named after.:rolleyes:
One notes we Drapers are also well represented in place names in the Colonies.

G-CPTN
3rd Dec 2006, 17:06
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wankers_Corner,_Oregon
Lois ******'s grandfather settled there (West Linn, Oregon area, just south of Portland) in 1895. The tavern was founded by Lois's dad in 1931. I gathered that it burned down in something like 1969 but they built a new one (I was scribbling fast and may have missed a few details). They own the store and lease the saloon (see below). I also gather that there is info about this in the Lake Oswego Library, for any friends out in the Beaver State who want to check this out, and in some Oregon Historical Society thing in Oregon City. I should comment, my earlier researches in Oregon place name books and Oregon history books revealed nothing.

In short, it was named for a person named ****** who settled there, presupposing that she wasn't lying to me.

Interesting censoring there . . .

frostbite
3rd Dec 2006, 17:10
Dare I mention the French and the 'Rue Pisse Pot' that was featured on C4.

tony draper
3rd Dec 2006, 17:17
Here yer go.
http://www.hometownusa.com/ut/Draper.html#County

One understands peeing in the street is the norm across there Mr Frostbite,dunno where the Pot comes from.
:rolleyes:

G-CPTN
3rd Dec 2006, 17:19
Whatever happened to Drapers Shops?
I think we should be told.

Lon More
3rd Dec 2006, 17:26
Been there (http://www.wankerscorner.com/)

Got the shirt
http://www.wankerscorner.com/wankerwear/images/M-athletics-tee.jpg

boris
3rd Dec 2006, 18:35
I had always thought that a Polonium was some sort of treadle operated organ substite keyboard instrument made of sausages.....