In The New York Times this week, John Tierney identifies a new way government regulation kills.
Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) have been shown to be unusually successful in helping smokers quit. The cigarette substitutes are basically nicontine-delivery devices, and the Royal College of Physicians found:
nicotine itself is not especially hazardous, and that if nicotine could be provided in a form that is acceptable and effective as a cigarette substitute, millions of lives could be saved.
A new study from Italy found that after 24 weeks half of all smokers using the electronic cigarettes reduced their consumption of cigarettes by 50 percent. A quarter gave up smoking altogether.
E-cigarettes may pose some risk, but after reviewing the scientific literature, the Harm Reduction Journal concluded that they are much safer:
e-cigarette users are not exposed to the thousands of toxic agents formed when tobacco is burned.
The American Association of Public Health Physicians wrote that E-cigarettes might "save the lives of four million of the eight million current adult American smokers."
Millions of lives saved! Who would want to stop that?
The FDA. They say that e-cigarettes "may" contain toxic ingredients. They threaten to ban them. They sent threatening letters to manufacturers.
The FDA claims that all their regulations save lives. But they're killing smokers.