Smoking: International and domestic battles rage

A U.S. federal appeals court is taking on the constitutional issue that a government proposal requiring large graphic photos on cigarette packs to show that smoking can harm or kill smokers.

Court weighs graphic health warnings on cigarettes

The tobacco companies argue that the proposed warnings are more anti-smoking advocacy than factual information. The Obama administration says the photos of dead and diseased smokers are indeed factual

And guess what? There is another story on the international side that fits into the anti-smoking campaign and packaging.

Honduras Complains at WTO Over Australia Tobacco-Logo Ban

The law — to take effect Dec. 1 — will prohibit the display of  logos, labels and trademarks. Yep, the Aussies decided that graphic pictures don’t seem to be working so they will ban the names of smoking material. (Gotta admit this is kind of weird.)

The Hondurans — tobacco producers — object to new law, saying it violates global rules on intellectual property.

So in the WTO the issue is intellectual property and in the USA it is free speech.

Seems there is a link between the two. I just haven’t seen anyone writing about it yet.

BTW: The graphic pictures the US government is suggesting are WAY more mild than the stuff we have seen on cigarette packs around the world. Face it, smoking kills!



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