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Risk profiles.. or the lack thereof

Discussion in 'Tobacco Harm Reduction' started by steffijade, Aug 30, 2014.

  1. steffijade

    steffijade Achiever

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    After the WHO's fearmomgering statements the other day, I found myself debating with (ok then, trolling) the antis who were spouting their usual crap on the BBC have your say comments.

    Part of those exchanges have got me thinking about risk profiles.

    One of the antz made a sweeping statement (along the lines of) he didn't want to be sat in the same room as someone vaping because 'passive vapour' hadn't been scientifically proven to be safe. I helpfully provided a link to Dr F's e-cig research website and invited them to take a look. I got the responses that Dr F isn't a scientist, probably has a vested interest, that his team's peer reviewed research was worthless because the peers doing the reviewing were biased and basically lacked integrity. Another response stated that 'passive vapour' hadn't been proven to be safe and until such time as it was proven to be safe, vaping in enclosed areas should be banned as a precautionary measure.

    On the face of it, that stance seems fairly reasonable and rational if one steps back and looks at the big picture, but on closer examination, it reveals a blinkered, bigoted mindset.

    It would appear that any research conducted that shows 'passive vapour' as being safe will be dismissed by the anti brigade as being biased and lacking integrity and therefore, inadmissible as evidence of safety.

    But this brings an important point to light in the whole safety debate, namely, how does one quantify safety?

    One of the antz commented that he would not risk the health of himself and his family by travelling in a car with a vaper because the enclosed space and lack of evidence to prove 'passive vapour' safety would make it an unacceptable risk in his judgement ( or words to that effect.. im paraphrasing here). That struck me as being somewhat ludicrous. Every time he and his family decide to make a journey in a car, there is an associated risk of of injury/death due to road accidents. Mr Antz makes an assessment of those risks and judges that the probability of having an accident is low enough to make taking that journey an acceptable risk in the majority of cases.

    Science is based on statistical observation and analysis of data. Statistics show that there are hundreds of deaths per year attributed to road accidents. Statistics also show that not a single death can be attributed to passive vapour. Despite this, Mr Antz is still happy to risk his family making a car journey, unless there happens to be a vaper in the vehicle.

    Now I've heard antz say that vapers are just deluding themselves about risk, but the above mindset seems a damn site more deluded to me.

    So how can we allay Mr Antz fears about the possible dangers of 'passive vapour' and make the risk profile of a journey with a vaper in the vehicle acceptable to him?

    The short answer is we can't.

    Mr Antz refuses to accept positive research because he believes it is biased and unreliable. Even if research shows a negligible risk profile, Mr Antz will find this unacceptable because he demands ABSOLUTE safety.. a complete lack of risk. This is entirely impossible to provide because no human activity has a zero risk profile.

    People have been reported to injure themselves from even from such mundane tasks as getting dressed or undressed.. something that the vast majority of us do on a daily basis. Would Mr Antz advocate banning clothing because it doesn't have a zero risk profile? No, he would assess that the risk of injury whilst dressing is minute and therefore, acceptable.

    So why do folk like Mr Antz demand absolute safety from 'passive vapour'? The simple answer is that they subscribe to a hate fuelled, narrow minded, bigoted ideology.

    It's time folk like these were called out on their impossible demands for absolute safety. There are levels of acceptable risk assigned to the workplace and under employment law, an employer must produce risk assessments of possible safety issues and enact policies to minimise the risk profile of those issues to an acceptable level. Note I say MINIMISE, not eliminate. There is an inherent risk in any activity and to eliminate risk entirely is impossible. Because of this there are official 'safe' levels of airborne contaminants that are deemed to be acceptable in the workplace (and indeed, in general air quality in the 'open').

    These need to be applied to the wider debate on the safety of 'passive vapour' and it needs to be hammered home to folk like Mr Antz that their demands for absolute safety are not only impossible to satisfy, but also delusional.

    An acceptable risk profile needs to be formulated for 'passive vapour' that has parameters that are comparable to guidelines for workplace safety. If a risk profile like this can be formulated and scientific research produced that shows 'passive vapour' falls into an acceptable risk profile, then folk like Mr Antz are only left with the argument 'it needs to be banned because I don't like it'.

    Of course, Mr Antz will maintain that any research that shows passive vapour has an acceptable risk profile is biased or 'rigged', but another foundation stone of science along with analytical observation is reproduction (no, not that kind of reproduction you filthy minded vapers ;) ) I mean the reproduction of results. If an experiment is carried out by one team, the results of that experiment can always be called into question. If that same experiment is carried out by multiple teams that are all able to achieve the same results, the original team's results gain validity and are seen as being scientifically 'sound'.

    If the research carried out by the likes of Dr F can be reproduced and validated, it shows Mr Antz's accusations of foul play to be the bigoted codswallop that it really is and that there IS an acceptable risk profile for passive vapour.

    But Mr Antz doesn't want or believe in an acceptable risk when it comes to passive vapour, even though he unconsciously makes risk assessments constantly in his everyday life and decides that risk is often acceptable.

    Mr Antz is a delusional, bigoted idiot.
     
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  2. Tubbyengineer

    Tubbyengineer Legend

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    There already is such a document- Burstyn I. Peering through the mist: systematic review of what the chemistry of contaminants in electronic cigarettes tells us about health risks. BMC Public Health 2014;14:18. doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-18
     
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  3. steffijade

    steffijade Achiever

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    Thanks luv.

    The point is, the likes of Mr Antz refuses to accept research of this kind because he refuses to accept any level of risk associated with 'passive vapour'. For him it's a black and white issue.. it's either 100% safe or if it's not 100%, then it's not safe.

    He likes to apply this black and white approach to a real world that works on shades of grey (no, not those shades of grey you filthy minded vapers ;) ).

    He and the others like him need to be called out on this unrealistic attitude and their demands for 100%, absolute safety need to be exposed for the unattainable, unreasonable bullcrap that they are.. hence the title of risk profiles ...or the lack thereof.

    For Mr Antz there is no such thing as an acceptable risk profile for passive vapour due to the quit or die blinkers.

    Apparently, I lost the train of thought whilst in rant mode and didn't make my point clear.. apologies for that. ;)
     
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  4. VaperCaper

    VaperCaper Achiever

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    Ah the old "Peer Review" canard.

    First off Dr F *IS* a scientist. anyone who claims otherwise is poisoning the well. He's a cardiologist and his e-cig research team is not connected with *any* e-cig or tobacco companies.

    I think it's worth making this clear to any new readers as I know you're well aware of that already Steffi :)

    Science and Peer review isn't actually all it's cracked up to be. I am not a scientist. I'd love to go back to uni and do an astrophysics degree, and I'm a science geek, but I learned to cook when I was 18 instead of learning calculus.

    Even I know that peer review is broken. It's fundamental premise is solid. You submit a paper to a publication, it gets experts in the field to read it and clear it for publication and if it gets published it gets thought of as being fundamentally correct.

    Problem is there aren't enough experts to go around. In 'proper' science, like say physics, they don't use this anymore as it doesn't work.

    In Health Science (and also Climate Science, but I digress) "science" is politically motivated rather than scientifically motivated. By that I mean that there are large vested interests in things like getting a drug to market say, and so some journals accept for publication papers that aren't as accurate or well written as they should be from a scientific standpoint, and the reviewers either can't or don't notice. the paper gets published, the media reads the abstract and assumes it's been rubber stamped as being 100% accurate and writes up whatever they have been paid to ....


    For a good dismantling of Peer Review see Carl Philips blog here and here.

    So now instead of hand waving away things that don't fit your preconceived bias by saying "that's not peer reviewed" - now stuff gets handwaved away with "that journal is terrible" or "those reviewers are clearly biased"

    Both of which are the equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears and going 'nyernyernyernyernyer'

    They are still gaming the system and clinging to whatever they can find to support their dogma, and it's next to impossible to get a person to change their beliefs about anything using facts and logic and reasoned arguments, as the beliefs are rarely arrived at in the first place from facts and logic.

    It's still worth pointing out the science and calmly repeating to these people that the science shows they are wrong as eventually it seeps through to the right people.
     
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  5. nikki from mars

    nikki from mars Veteran

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    @ steffijade that is absolutely spot on... it's the same with any form of bigotry out there... the actions and reactions of a bigoted and biased person are never based on logic and reason and therefore they are completely resistant to reasonable logical argument. .. I know after trying to talk to people who hold unreasonable attitudes on race, sexuality, gender etc. as well as on vaping. .. you may as well bang your head against a brick wall...But I keep on doing it at times because occasionally a few people may not really hold such unshakeable beliefs and sometimes even if it only gets through to the onlookers rather than that individual some good is done. .. and anyway would rather at least try to light the candle rather than just cursing the darkness. ..
    So stick at it I say!
    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Planet of the Vapes mobile app
     
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  6. Tubbyengineer

    Tubbyengineer Legend

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    Mr Antz is an Arsehole, moreover he is an arsehole with the cognitive abilities of a Lobotomised lemon. He also does not truly understand the meaning of safe, Nor does he understand that both Pro and Anti factions have their own Agenda's. Mr Antz will willingly accept that a product is safe if a "Reputable" source tells him it is - and by reputable Mr Antz means either a major Tabloid or TV news source or a pronouncement from any group opposed to the item under discussion. This is because Mr Antz is A; A Gullible twat, B; Completely clueless as to scientific method, and C; Moronic enough to warrant clinical intervention...

    At this point I've begun to foam at the mouth and will cease and desist for my own wellbeing...:rant:
     
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  7. nikki from mars

    nikki from mars Veteran

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    Tubbyengineer bloody good description of all the Mr Antz out there I have come across. ..

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Planet of the Vapes mobile app
     
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  8. geewiz

    geewiz Postman

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    DRONE.jpg

    Mr Antz
     
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  9. Chegs

    Chegs Veteran

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    I admire your efforts steffijade,but I think it is time for you to accept that Mr ANTZ & their ilk need stood against a wall & injected with a few ounces of high-speed hot lead. They are likely to take the opposing view regardless of who/what/where the evidence countering their objection came from.The only "evidence" they will accept is that which proves their viewpoint unfortunately.
     
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  10. Peeej

    Peeej Postman

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    Cat among the pigeons time

    Mr Antz is not, as far as I can tell, wanting us to give up vaping but to not vape in an enclosed space with him in it because we do not understand the risks associated to it in terms of his health.

    Its obvious that he is not a vaper and as such any risk to his health from our vape is a risk which he doesn't wish to take. This seems like a reasonable stance to me as regardless of the level of risk it is not one he chooses or wishes to take.

    Even if the risk of second hand vape is very low, it is still a risk isn't it? (yeah I understand nothing is proven one way or the other)

    Isn't he within his rights to say that he doesn't wish to take that risk however low it maybe because we are creating that risk and not him? I'm happy to sit in a room full of vapers but I vape so I take that risk anyway.

    We as vapers have to be aware that we don't fully understand the risks we are taking, to do anything else is a blinkered as the Antz, isn't it?

    There is very little risk of a loaded gun going off in some ones hand but, personally, I'd rather not be in the room at the same time as the gun.
     

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