ngin - Norfolk Genetic Information Network

24 January 2002

BIG TOBACCO, ROGER SCRUTON AND THE BULLSH*T BRIGADE

Note in the article below from the front page of today's Guardian, Roger Scruton's role in authoring for the Institute of Economic Affairs where Julian Morris has been a key CS Prakash collaborator - (Prakash has even spoken in Britain from an IEA platform). For Morris and his IEA colleague's role in coordinating attacks on oragnic farming and support for biotech, and their links to the likes of Prof Philip Stott, Richard D. North as well as to Big Tobacco, see:
http://members.tripod.com/~ngin/pants6.htm

Morris is also a key player in the International Policy Network (IPN)  which promotes a loose global coalition  of rightwing "think tanks" and industry fronts. Scruton co-authored a pro-tobacco report with Network "member" the Liberty Institute in New Delhi which has opposed restrictions on the tobacco industry which it promotes as a driver for economic growth. Also listed by IPN as part of the Network is Prakash's AgBioWorld Foundation.
http://www.policynetwork.net/network.htm [for more on Prakash:
http://members.tripod.com/~ngin/11101b.htm]

After reviewing the activities of some of the scientists and others shown to have been funded by Big Tobacco via the Philip Morris archive, Dr Stanton Glantz and Dr Elisa Ong concluded:

"Public health professionals need to be aware that the 'sound science' movement is not an indigenous effort from within the profession to improve the quality of scientific discourse, but reflects sophisticated public relations campaigns controlled by industry executives and lawyers whose aim is to manipulate the standards of scientific proof to serve the corporate interests of their clients."  America Journal of Public Health, November 2001
http://www.ajph.org/cgi/content/full/91/11/1749

***

Scruton in media plot to push the sale of cigarettes [excerpts]

Kevin Maguire and Julian Borger
Thursday January 24, 2002
The Guardian
http://www.guardian.co.uk/smoking/Story/0,2763,638406,00.html

Professor Roger Scruton, darling of the moral right, asked one of the world's biggest tobacco companies for [Pounds] 5,500 a month to help place pro-smoking articles in some of Britain's most influential newspapers and magazines.

The controversial conservative academic offered to use his Fleet Street contacts to get pieces published in his own name and those of others on "major topics of current concern" to the tobacco industry.

In a leaked email to Japan Tobacco International seeking a [pounds]1,000 rise on his existing [pounds]4,500 monthly fee, Prof Scruton argued that in a business "largely conducted by shysters and sharks" he represented value for money.

"We would aim to place an article every two months in one or other of the WSJ [Wall Street Journal], the Times, the Telegraph, the Spectator, the Financial Times, the Economist, the Independent or the New Statesman," says the note, sent last October under the name of Sophie, his wife and business partner.

"While one or more of these articles might be written by RS, we would do our best to get other journalists to join in."  He advised Japan Tobacco to shift the onus onto health risks posed by other products.

...He had previously written a pamphlet for the Institute of Economic Affairs attacking WHO moves to curtail tobacco and newspapers, including the Daily Telegraph in June 2001.

An article published in September 1998 by Prof Scruton in the Wall Street Journal referred to him as a "philosopher living in England", making no mention of any financial link  with the tobacco industry.

...Clive Bates, director of the ASH anti-smoking campaign, said last night: "Scruton likes to pass himself off as the leading intellectual of the right, but it seems he's just a grimy hack for the tobacco industry."

He added that the deal with the tobacco industry made the academic neither intellectual nor independent.

sked if he saw himself as one of the "shysters and sharks", Prof Scruton said: "No, on the contrary, but that's what I think of public affairs generally. What I meant was the kind of fees they demand. What we do is a small cottage industry."

ngin bulletin archive

INDEX