Dick Puddlecote joins ViP at Vapefest

Vapers in Power had a blast at Vapefest and really enjoyed meeting everyone who made it to our marquee, before it blew away!  As with Vapefest 2015 the ViP tent hosted speakers and we were delighted that Dick Puddlecote could make it this year too.  For those who missed his epic talk, here are his notes- and it’s almost as entertaining to read as it was to watch. 

CpMtCo7WAAALaB3

Dick Puddlecote at Vapefest 2016 (Taken by Richard Hyslop)

Last year I came here and spoke on way to a family holiday. Stayed for a couple of hours then went and did interesting things like eating tons of chocolate at Cadbury World and nearly castrating myself jumping in a harness off a high wire adventure course.

I thought I’d do a review of the year since then (or more accurately, I suppose, a review of what I have written about in vaping this year), so to start with, what did others do for their holiday last summer?

SEPTEMBER

14141938_757892344348846_6003963613967462618_n

Chapman vaper-spotting:
“My wife and I spent many hours every day walking around Paris (six days), Lyon (two), the Corsican towns of Bonifacio, Ajaccio and Calvi (eight days), Nice (one), Barcelona (two) and Madrid (four). We agreed to compete in spotting the highest number of people vaping, with the incentive for the daily winner being to pick where we’d eat that night. We also looked out for shops selling e-cigarettes. All sightings had to be called as they occurred, not just a winning number announced at the end of the day.
Over the 23 days, we saw just 20 people vaping: 15 in Paris, one in Lyon, one in Calvi, one in Barcelona and two in Madrid. By contrast, we saw many people smoking almost everywhere we looked at any time of day. Far too many to count. At a guess, the ratio would have been at very least many hundreds of smokers to one vaper.”
Boy doesn’t he relax like a boss! Bet his wife had a fantastic time.
Erm, aren’t anecdotes meant to be useless Simon, you decrepit piece of fossilised dinosaur crap?

McKee/Capewell wrote to the Lancet about the positive PHE report on e-cigs. Apparently it was fatally flawed because in one of the 185 studies they reviewed, a couple of ‘experts’ had once been paid for research by BAT in around 1946 or something. Riccardo Polosa was particularly criticised for IIRC having dared to do work for pharma companies. Erm … words fail. But more on that later.

OCTOBER

A quiet month. But Matt Ridley wrote to the Times to slam the TPD. Hazel Cheeseminge of ASH replied haughtily that …
“EU regulations will provide a safe framework through which electronic cigarettes can be sold, giving their users confidence in these products. This is likely to save many thousands of lives.”
Well only if they can find out about them love, considering many forms of advertising has been banned, thousands of flavours will disappear as a result, and the most useful strength for smokers wishing to switch is illegal.

NOVEMBER

14141767_757892907682123_2589095677086447335_n
Report of the Health Committee in Wales on the Public Health Bill was published.
Debate centred on the proposals on vaping in workplaces that are also homes. Especially Article 8 of Human Rights Act on right to private and family home life. The committee was of the opinion that they were entitled to ignore Art 8 for passive smoking (based on nonsense junk science) but not for vaping cos it’s not dangerous. However that … “need to protect against the risk of re-normalisation, the gateway effect and enforcement difficulties”
Because some guy vaping in his front room watching WWE will renormalize smoking, magically make kids run to the shop for a pack of Marlboro and cause a headache for enforcement officials cos he has his curtains drawn, THE BASTARD! (scenario)

On my blog I wrote about A Billion Lives. I criticised Biebert’s stupid use of the umpteen thousand kids die of passive smoke bollocks, but defended the use of other PH propaganda as a great tool to embarrass them. Smokers were absolutely livid! How dare I suggest that smoking might be risky … as I have always done? By contrast, vapers were incredibly supportive … I was only called ‘disgusting’, ‘slime’, and a ‘worm’ for daring to say anything negative about the film.
In short, smokers attacked vapers, vapers attacked smokers, it crawled all over the internet … and when it all calmed down, everyone thought I was a wanker.

 

MPs were given a new vaping area outside Westminster … and promptly completely ignored it.

DECEMBER

To the surprise of no-one, an EU court threw out TW’s objection to Article 20. The reasoning given was that they didn’t have the first clue what the devices are and why they are being regulated. Or something.

article-20-girl1
Said that it was reasonable to regulate to stop the gateway theory, yet nothing in TPD would counteract that. May as well have said we think the TPD is fine because it helps old ladies cross the road.

JANUARY

Big month for DP. After just under a year, finally got FOI answered properly on McKee/Davies emails.
This revealed that he lied in the BMJ about writing the Lancet criticism, it was shown he referred “with interest” to something he had anonymously written with fellow gobshite Capewell. And was trying hard to undermine his own profession by pillow talk with Silly Sally.
I published a few articles and he went quiet for a while. Must have worried a lot cos when he came back he was a shadow of the man he once was, his weight had plummeted to only around 20 stone!
The FOI also highlighted McKee complaining that …

“Blogs and tweets having a field day, photoshopping my face onto all sorts of things”

Yes, that’s what Twitter tends to do with an oozy lather of obesity who thinks howling at the moon is science, Martin.

FEBRUARY

EU rumoured to tax e-cigs, but that was OK because the UK govt had a veto! You know, the UK govt who loves the EU so much … except for one thing, the UK was one of 3 nations to suggest the idea!

NCSCT released guidance on e-cigs. It led to an epidemic of ‘public health’ bedwetting!

  1. Store safely
  2. Be positive … just imagine that!
  3. Don’t be alarmed about recreation!
  4. Dual use is not a bad thing … heresy!
  5. And worst of all, TALK TO VAPERS, they’re the experts!

Just imagine that! Actually listen to vapers? Calls to the Samaritans from middle-aged women in stop smoking services must have seen a spike at the very thought!

NCSCT

MARCH

Very busy month.
A small beach in Wales called Little Haven was subject to the first ever outdoor vaping ban not on NHS (as in, our) property. Faggot-lipped fuckwits at ASH Wales declared that they “fully welcomed” it. They later replied to tweets saying they tried to convince the council that it was a bad idea, but their logo is still on a no vaping sign there. In order to defend a beach visited by one man and his three-legged dog with just an ice cream trolley and a shop selling £1 nets and inflatables in the shape of a duck.

31FE6C1000000578-3483439-image-a-61_1457505426874
In other news, Drakeford hilariously lost his Public Health Bill by one vote then proceeded to blame everyone else. (Side note, but have you noticed how many “health” officials who hate vaping are fat fucks?). No, Mark, the reason you lost is because you stunningly clung onto a ridiculous ban on vaping, if you want to blame anyone look in your mirror (which presumably takes up an entire wall so he can see himself in full).

Jack Le Beau wrote a steaming pile of shit I’m not allowed to talk about and I cheered something Clive Bates said which led to just about everyone calling me a wanker … again.

APRIL

As the football season ended, a guy was banned from Leicester’s celebrations for vaping. Rightfully vapers went mad and there is an event in Sept to discuss the issue at Leicester’s ground. I’d urge anyone who is free to go along. http://www.kachange.eu/activities/dialogues 

April also saw the Royal College of Physicians report launch and what I call the “Big Scream” followed! From Dublin to Sydney via Manchester, every pretend health professional who despises e-cigs whined like fucking babies that science was trumping their deeply-held bigotry … err, sorry, beliefs!

It was by far the highlight of the year for me.

On RCP “Big Scream” I wrote: “Who knew that such a benign activity as vaping could flush out so many vile anti-social and intolerant arseholes in one fell swoop”

In other news, huge anti-vaper Simon Chapman was appointed to review Australia’s policies on e-cigs, talk about the fox guarding the hen house, and Aberdeen council proposed a ban on vaping in car parks. When asked for comment, ASH Scotland avoided comment and said “ooh is that the time, I think we have an appointment, erm, somewhere else!”

MAY

This month I wrote about the extraordinary lobbying undertaken by ASH. This was cos I was passed a FOI from Guido Fawkes with ASH emails to DoH. I STILL HAVEN’T FINISHED READING IT!

There was also the IEA debate following the TPD being officially implemented. Ian Green spoke about effect on the free market it introduced as an owner of a vape shop, Ian Barber of the advertising association spoke about effect on the free market it introduced to advertising, Lorien Jollye spoke about effect on the free market it introduced to consumers, Fraser Cropper spoke about effect on the free market it introduced to independent businesses, Mark Pawsey MP turned up late and said … look at me, isn’t Brexit shit?

maxresdefault
Callanan’s motion! A great initiative, brilliantly supported by vapers, most espesh ViP whose work ensured that all 800+ Lords received at least 3 letters from the public! (applause). If politicians didn’t know of the vaping vote before that, they certainly did after.

JUNE

BREXIT! Vapers arguably won it! Vote Leave campaign manager Matthew Elliott used it as a campaigning tool, his deputy Matt Sinclair tweeted about it and Leave.EU used article 20 as an example of EU overreach and intransigence. Meant to be free market. The Freedom Association is now here at Vapefest talking about Freedom to Vape as a campaign on its own. This is progress.

Capture

ASH Wales, who fully welcomed the beach ban in March, also absolutely loved a red button at Hywel Dda (Thanks to Rhydian for pronouncing it) which allows hideous cheesedicks to press it and “anonymously harangue smokers for doing so outdoors”. We now learn it cost £9000 thanks to Rhydian’s FOI.

Callanan came back for a last hurrah at his motion which was relegated to one of regret instead of fatal. He took the opportunity to rip into those who have been shockingly apathetic or worse about e-cigs.
On Soubry: “Cringe-making performance”
On Silly sally “Incompetence would be funny if not so serious”
On MHRA “Signally failed” the public and politicians should be “extremely cautious about listening to its lobbying”
Followed criticism of DoH earlier in the year “to its deep shame [DoH] tried to block e-cigs”
My second best moment of the year.

JULY

Royal Society of Medicine debate: I attended this which was about all types of drugs but included e-cigs. Quite stunning Q from a medical type in the post-panel Q&A.
“Could you elaborate on the benefits of drugs?”
I kid you not. Erm, how about that for millions of years humans have enjoyed getting shitfaced on them. From the first time Neanderthal man ate a berry which gave him a buzz our kind have enjoyed mood-altering substances. Any ‘public health’ type who still doesn’t get this and insists on abstinence over harm reduction is more backward than cavemen themselves.

13732003_736235996514481_4099340200479205004_o
PHE guidance on vaping in work and public was released. Instantly taken by media as being “vapers should be given more breaks”. All coverage relied on the false assumption that e-cigs are already banned or should be. Stronger message please PHE, it’s like a fucking whisper at the moment.

AUGUST

Full circle to August.

Most absurd proposal of the last 12 months. Smoking and Vaping banned on public streets! Outside a hospital. With cars, vans, buses, and two – count ‘em – TWO huge packed car parks in the same road. The public think this is a great idea! Which just goes to show how incredibly stupid PH has guided the public to be.

So what can we expect or hope to expect in the coming year? Well, the Pleasure Principle is something vapers already know about from the NNA, but also “Pleasure Economy” which was my fave phrase of the year. It was a term mentioned by European drug harm expert Axel Klein at the RSM event in July. The market for e-cigs and associated supplies is predicted to top £1bn this year. We are now a force not just as vapers but also as a market. Prohibition failed, prohibition by regulation failed, it is now not just a movement but an entire business category on its own. That carries clout and should be impossible to stop.

I once said the same about vapers. That the more there are the harder it is to silence. There are now over 1,600 vape shops in this country, 2.8m vapers and growing. It can’t be stopped so next 12 months we should seek to point that out.

Vapers mean business, vapers mean that you can earn money (public and private), vapers mean votes (Brexit proves that) and you’d better get used to it cos they’re part of the economy.

peoples_administration_direct_democracy_people_power-14B371F32D34983D8CA

You can read Dick’s blogposts at http://dickpuddlecote.blogspot.co.uk/  and follow him on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/Dick_Puddlecote

 

The Pleasure Principle

pexels-photo

There have already been a few blogs on this, from Sarah’s seminal start, to Simon’s recent addition. The hope, I guess, is that by banging on we can finally get into PH’s sometimes thick skulls (sorry PH readers), what vaping is all about. At least for a significant section of vapers.

The clue is in the title, pleasure. Smoking was pleasurable, that is why I did it. The addiction/pleasure nexus is hard to untangle, but pleasure was there. Either the dopamine hit from stress relief or the sheer joy in watching blue-tinged smoke billow across a summer-lit, darkened room. Or just the head-rush from the first fag of the day, or after a meal, or after sex.

Then I started to hear about vaping, oh it wasn’t called that then, so, more accurately, I started to hear about electronic cigarettes. I was curious because if I had the money I’d be an early adopter of every technology – hell, I’d have a bionic arm in a heartbeat – and I totally wish I could upload myself into the cloud. So eventually, after a few months of being aware of their existence, I tried to find out about them, I bought one.

It was a cigalike, yeah, but it was brushed steel and it glowed green (or blue lol, I can’t remember). I was straight into living in some kind of sci-fi future. Ok, the battery was pants (even though I had ordered two), but it was more pleasurable than smoking, more fun.

It was fucking tasty! I’d ordered a tobacco (a bit nutty, a bit meh) and an apple – oh the nights of internet browsing that discovering that ecigs came in flavours led to…

More of the pleasure, none of the death.

People are led often by base instincts. We are creatures of simplicity and reaction. We rarely respond to logic, we like to be cosy. Vaping hits so many bases it’s unreal. That is why ordinary, unexceptional folk have had the temerity to question our Lords and masters – to kick back at the lies and misinformation still being peddled in even so-called “vaping friendly” nations like the UK.

Some things are simple – vaping is fun and fulfilling, I only do it because I like it more than smoking, doh! It is consumer-led and it threatens established interests. ASH’s recent behaviour for instance is out on a limb. They, and many others, in India, in Australia, in the US, all over, are actually causing harm by trying to stop people enjoying themselves. Just unpack that for a minute. There should be court cases.

Give me one repeatable and credible study that shows harm from ecigs.

Another thing, social media. I had LOADS of friends in my 20’s. As I got older I just fell out of contact with most of them. As I entered my 40’s, my biggest gripe was that I just didn’t seem to have any connections any more. Well. vaping changed that big time. It might be the camaraderie of being on the David side, it might just be having a hobby! It’s not directly related but I throw it in because friendships increase pleasure, and vaping has given me some real and deep friends.

So, I’m sitting here, looking at my PC screen (as I do far too much), occasionally toking on a Blueberry/Raspberry mix, or Custard with a bit of Apricot, or a Red Astaire one shot, blowing out the (admittedly small by some standards) clouds and absolutely bloody loving it.

#CelebrateTheVape

Open Letter to Heidi Alexander MP

Dear Ms Alexander

Thank you for your reply regarding your thoughts on Lord Callanan’s motion.

We agree that switching to vaping can be a safe and effective way to give up smoking, and that the Government should be doing more to promote e-cigarettes as a potentially useful aid to help people quit smoking.

However, the “incredibly important changes” you refer to that were threatened by Lord Callanan’s motion, are dwarfed by the actual health improvements that a properly regulated vaping market could produce.

Are you aware that the European Commission has estimated that the Tobacco Products Directive will only “lead to a 2% drop in consumption of tobacco over a period of 5 years.”? (1) That represents 183 000 current smokers in the UK. Compare that figure to the 11.5% fall in tobacco prevalence over the last five years directly attributable to vaping: that’s 1.3M current vaping ex-smokers (2).  Electronic cigarettes, under the current regulatory regime, massively outperform all other tobacco control measures, both present and proposed, combined. Why on earth would anyone want to threaten this?

Are you also aware that whilst only 9% of current vapers (252 000 people) use strengths over 20mg/ml (3), for a new switcher that proportion is much higher (4)?

These results from a survey of 2700 experienced vapers might give you some indication of this:

Vaping Truth Survey
Vaping Truth Survey 2015 (Kevin Crowley)

As you can see, although experienced vapers can be happy on lower nicotine concentrations, for new switchers a much higher concentration is need for the switch to be successful (5). We know this because we are vapers and have lived through it. Other organisations you may hear from have a more “academic” understanding of the issues and often miss relevant points.

The 10ml bottle limit and 2ml tank size limit are of course simply pointless and ungrounded inconveniences – in fact both scientists whose research the EU used to come up with these limits complained bitterly that their results had been misunderstood and misused (6). The limits will cause some damage (as does anything that reduces the value proposition of ecigs versus cigarettes), but the real harms of the TPD lie elsewhere:

  • A less vibrant ecig market will halt the recent reductions in young adults taking up smoking (7) – this is the main and most disastrous unintended consequence of the TPD. Two thirds of smokers start when they are teenagers. At present they have a non-addictive (8) (9) and safe (10)  way to experiment. Make ecigs vastly less attractive (as the TPD will do) and they’re back to experimenting with cigarettes, which leads to smoking for many years. We all know this because we all did it.
  • It has created a piecemeal market across the EU, with some countries allowing but most banning cross border sales. This is already affecting previously thriving UK businesses.
  • It imposes absurd levels of testing on e-liquids – testing not required for cigarettes – which will massively reduce the variety of e-liquids sold, and hence the chance that a smoker will find something which they prefer to cigarettes.
  • The testing costs will be far beyond the reach of most of the UK’s hundreds of e-liquid manufacturers, shutting down promising small businesses, with the associated misery that entails.
  • The advertising restrictions shut down opportunities for smokers to find out about ecigs.
  • It adds a warning: “This product contains nicotine which is a highly addictive substance. It is not recommended for use by non-smokers”. This is not only scientifically illiterate (nicotine has only ever been found to be addictive when delivered via lit tobacco) but not required for other nicotine containing products on the market.
  • It promotes the false impression that ecigs are as harmful as cigarettes, preventing switching.

It is a shame the EU was seen as more important than the people who make up the EU. Politicians, by ignoring vapers, have just killed 105 000 of their constituents, across the EU, every year.(11) Thanks for that.

The Vapers in Power Team

 

1 – http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-14-134_en.htm

2 – http://www.ash.org.uk/files/documents/ASH_93.pdf

3 – http://www.ash.org.uk/files/documents/ASH_891.pdf

4 – http://www.nature.com/articles/srep04133

5 – http://www.tobaccopreventioncessation.com/Satisfactory-throat-hit-is-a-need-to-switch-from-tobacco-to-e-cigarette-lesson-for-an-e-liquid-blind-test,62918,0,2.html#.V07cWpzqPS0.twitter

6 – http://www.theelectroniccigarette.co.uk/blog/1729/the-eu-has-misrepresented-scientific-evidence-and-the-scientists-fight-back/

7 – http://ash.org.uk/files/documents/ASH_108.pdf

8 – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25561385

9 – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3466669/

10 – http://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2458-14-18

11 – http://londoneconomics.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/High_nicotine_e-cigs_ban-Feb14.pdf

 

#RIPVape

 

Effective vaping as we know it died on 20th May 2016. The fact that the government put  vaping on life support for another year doesn’t change that.  

 

Yes you can still buy tanks which are over 2ml and juice which is over 20mg/ml, but in a few months time you won’t be able to. Yes, even then we will be ok (some of us have been stockpiling nicotine and we will continue to buy direct from China) but what about the people who are smoking and who might want to stop at some point in the future? New vapers do need higher nicotine strengths and are often using less efficient devices (not sub ohming, in other words). It’s easy to forget that most of the 2.8m vapers in the UK are using cigalikes or egos and CE4s. The TPD of course, pretty much destroys DIY  and ruins small boutique eliquid businesses, so yes, #RIPVape. And yes,  adverts are banned – some EU countries are even trying to ban promotion on social media, so yes, #RIPVape.

 

We knew that there would be a range of sentiments and feelings the day the TPD came in:  some people would be sad but many would be angry.  #RIPVape was a tag that could be used in a number of ways. Importantly it also made it clear to the target audience what topic was being discussed. Vapers and the vaping community were not the target audience. The media was.

 

It now is #RIPVape in most of the EU member states. Vaping has taken off in the UK and there’s a sheer force of numbers: it is a tsunami and that makes it much much harder to shut it down. That isn’t the case in much of the EU and the TPD will wipe out vaping in many countries. Vapers in Power is a UK registered political party but we have members from many countries and we are very aware that this is a global fight.

No surrender!

Did anyone else try to mark the passing of the TPD into law?

We planned to use #RIPVape before the news broke that Lord Callanan had proposed a motion which could overturn the TPD in the UK. We ran with #RIPVape and added #LordsVapeVote into our social media postings too. #RIPVape was adopted by many people and trended on Twitter. It evolved too into #RIPVaping. That trended as well – because enough people used the hashtag – it spoke to those people. Trending hashtags are investigated by the media, so the campaign achieved its aim.

 

RIGHT NOW is what we have to do to save vaping: https://vapersinpower.wordpress.com/lordsvapevote-writing-campaign/  

 

Now is the time for action

TPD TWITTER BOMB

Below you will find a timetable for Friday May 20th with the names, Twitter addresses and (in some cases) Facebook pages of people relevant to vaping and with influence on the subject.

Some are pro vaping, some are not so pro, and some are downright anti.

The concept of the Twitter bomb is that everyone tweets to the the same individual at approximately the same time: this can help produce ‘trends’ which receive media attention.

For those of you not familiar with software such as Hootsuite, Tweetdeck and Twuffer, I would suggest having a look if you are wondering how to get all the tweets out on time. Vapers in Power have been using Hootsuite for a couple of years with a great deal of success. It takes a lot of the hard work out as all you have to do is think up the tweets.

For those that are blocked by some of the people on the list, please don’t miss them out. Just add #ImBlocked to your tweet. Whilst your tweet will not be seen by the recipient, it will still be seen by journalists searching.

Also PLEASE remember to add:

#RIPVape

8AM: Linda McAvan MEP – Facebook: Linda McAvan MEP , Twitter: @LindaMcAvanMEP
As rapporteur for the TPD Linda played a crucial role in getting the TPD through.   Referred to by many vapers as the angel of death.

9AM: Will Self – Twitter: @wself
Well known vaper and author/ journalist who sometimes writes about e-cigs.

10AM: David Cameron – Facebook: David Cameron , Twitter: @David_Cameron
British Prime Minister and leader of the Conservative Party. Has been making the right noises but we have yet to see anything concrete.

11AM: Nigel Farage – Facebook: Nigel Farage , Twitter: @Nigel_Farage
Leader of UKIP and a smoker who has tried vaping and is in favour of it. Against the TPD as a piece of EU bureaucracy but could be more vocal.

12PM: Martin Schulz MEP – Facebook: Martin Schulz , Twitter: @MartinSchulz
President of the European Parliament and responsible for the shennanigans which prevented Article 20 (then Article 18)  being scrutinised properly by MEP’s.

1PM: Viscount Matt Ridley – Twitter: @mattwridley
Member of the House of Lords who has spoken out in favour of vaping, including on the floor of the House.

2PM: Jeremy Corbyn – Facebook: Jeremy Corbyn , Twitter: @jeremycorbyn
Leader of the Labour Party. Has in the past signed a EDM supporting vaping but hasn’t made any noises in favour since.   His party is the least in favour of vaping

3PM: Charlie Sloth – Twitter: @CharlieSloth
Radio One DJ with  his own juice line from Totally Wicked. Does he know about the regulations?  On air from 4pm today.  

4PM: Mark Drakeford – Twitter: @MarkDrakeford
Welsh Health Minister responsible for proposing a vaping ban in Wales and continues to support this idea even in the face of scientific evidence presented in committee.

5PM: Dr Christian Jessen – Facebook: Doctor Christian , Twitter: @DoctorChristian
A Dr and TV presenter who vocally supports vaping both on social media and on television.

6PM: Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) – Twitter: @ASH_LDN
Leading anti-smoking charity which professes to support vaping but does not speak out against vaping bans and supports the TPD.  

7PM: Nick Clegg – Facebook: Nick Clegg , Twitter: @nick_clegg
Former leader of the liberal democrats and a self confessed vaper. Whilst he used an e-cig to help him stop smoking and is in favour of them he hasn’t been vocally supporting vapers against the TPD.

Please try to keep your tweets polite, even to those you don’t feel deserve it. The aim is for  these tweets to be seen by the media and venting your spleen may not help the cause.

twitterbomb

Reaction to ASH news release 16 May 2016

 

ASH’s lack of concern for 200,000 vapers is staggering

In response to: http://www.ash.org.uk/media-room/press-releases/:new-eu-rules-on-nicotine-strength-not-a-problem-for-most-vapers

ASH’s lack of concern for the 200,000 vapers who use eliquid that will be banned is staggering. Higher strengths are used mainly by new vapers and dual-fuellers: in other words, by smokers who may be trying to give up. Not to mention future smokers that might try ecigs as an alternative. The very people ASH should be most concerned about. Higher strengths are needed to get over the initial hurdle of switching. It’s the throat hit that matters at that point – nothing to do with nicotine dependence.  ASH’s suggestion to supplement nicotine with patches completely misses the point.

Of course, ASH have form on underplaying the appalling nature of the TPD, a law that will kill people (some say up to 105 000 a year 1). Their recent “fact”sheet 2 on the impact of the TPD ignores the costs to vaping businesses (mostly small, independent, family and friend affairs) of the onerous testing regime. Costs which have been estimated to be ~£3000 per product, way above the £150 notification fee which is all ASH sees fit to mention.

We have to wonder why they are getting this so disastrously wrong when it is clear that including ecigs in the TPD will cause harm.

Lord Callanan says: “this was argued for by the pharmaceutical industry, which would have an awful lot to lose if e-cigarettes supplanted or replaced nicotine patches and gum” 3. He should know, he was there when it was being drafted.

Why are ASH suggesting it will be fine?

This is what some real people who will be affected by the TPD have to say:

Jill Baldwin (Gloucestershire): “As an ex 60 a day cigarette smoker, 24mg/ml was my life saver. A limit of 20mg/ml will stop some people from quitting cigarettes”.

Mark Magenis (Chelmsford): “In the cheaper devices many smokers still struggle at 24mg, this law demands those that do to make a bigger investment, to get high power devices, which is a leap of faith the most addicted smokers are reluctant to make”.

Liam Bryan (Bristol): “The limits on the concentration of nicotine allowed are more to do with nobbling vaping than protecting users – I’ll be ordering from abroad and hoping the package isn’t stopped. I make my eliquid myself, a safe and cost-effective practice. The TPD stops me doing that, it turns me into a criminal”.

Rhydian Mann (Swansea): “If I didn’t have access to 2.4% and 3.6% nicotine liquid I wouldn’t have been able to do so. I still use those concentrations during times of stress. Under TPD,the easiest option to get my nicotine fix will be a cigarette and I will certainly take that avenue if needs be”.

Lisa Kirkham (Hartlepool): “Outrageous and one of the incentives to switch was the cost and the strength. I did not feel deprived as it was a perfect replacement for tobacco. I don’t believe them for one second when they say it’s for safety. Corrupt liars and it’s all about money!”

Gareth Witty (Windsor): “The TPD is not a protecting rule but rather an underhand deal to try and give Vaping to the tobacco and pharma industry due to illegal deals and should not be recognised by any country”.

Lee Woolls (Cardiff): “The 2% maximum nicotine level is an attempt to make these products ineffective. The pharmaceutical lobbyists certainly earned their money that day. Shame on EU!”

Scott Gregory: “The only explanation for the results of the survey is that ASH are either asking the wrong questions, or the wrong people. It is not about those that currently vape, it is about those smokers that have yet to switch and how they manage to successfully transition”.

Kevin Crowley (USA): “Restriction on levels of nicotine is like limiting water to a fish. Current / future vapers should not be limited on nicotine levels, as it is the most important part of reducing tobacco with vaping products”.

Jamie Hollywood (North Lanarkshire): “The 20mg limit will be 1 of the barriers that stops people being able to make the switch from tobacco smoking successfully.  A lot of people won’t get a strong enough nicotine hit, thereby going back to smoking”.

Robert Jenkins (Cardiff): “I started vaping with 24mg Nicotine because it was a close match to tobacco. I truly believe if I had been limited to a lower nicotine dose I would still be smoking. Household bleach is not limited to 10ml bottles so why should E Liquid be?  It  makes no sense”.

Darren Stone: “10ml bottle will increase production costs (especially with them now having to be sealed nozzles, plus labeling is not really big enough to get all the warnings on. Plastic bottles now won’t be recyclable as can’t be washed out and will still have a small bit of nic in them (environment issue). I started on 24mg under the tpd the 20mg limit might not have been enough to get me off tobacco. 2ml tank size is just a ball ache which leads to ever more refilling for a lot of people. The fact you can’t advertise a product which gets people off tobacco whist not costing the tax payer anything still amazes me”.

Ben Parr (Leeds): “From first hand experience of managing a vape store for a few years, I still have customers who rely on 30mg and above as they don’t won’t a box mod and are still happy with there pen style, plus the 20mg max strength is going to make it hard for 30 a day plus smokers to switch, and believe me there are quite a few”.

Christina May (W Australia): “If these new regulations were in place,I would NEVER have been able to quit smoking after 47 years and to be frank I would still be incontinent. 2 yrs and 2 months of vaping and I am a new woman. And yes you may publish my name. I can sleep in peace at night now without coughing my guts up”.

Paul Barnes (Essex):

20mg/ml limit
For some vapers, the imposed limits will be more of an inconvenience than a problem. However, we mustn’t forget that the vast proportion of vapers don’t frequent vape stores, forums and social media and are most likely on “older” hardware that necessitates the use of higher strength liquids. These are the ones that will be most affected. The limit will also have a negative impact on those dual using or looking to switch, as lower strengths may not provide the satisfaction those users need.
2ml Tank Size
For many vapers this does pose a problem – lower nicotine strengths and more efficient devices do need a larger tank size to be convenient. Regular refills can be troublesome and in most cases carrying additional liquid for this purpose is simply not convenient. This won’t necessarily affect me directly in the immediate future, but will in the long term as the tanks I use regularly end up being phased out of the market.
Cost Increase
For the everyday vaper this will have a large impact as one of the primary reasons vaping is so popular is the fact that it is relative inexpensive compared to tobacco. Narrowing this benefit will likely have one of two effects – users will end up weening themselves off vaping altogether as costs increase, or they could end up (especially the newer users) relapsing back to their old habit. These products need to be cost efficient for the user to be attractive as an alternative to smoking”.

Debbie Traynor (Grantham, Lincs):
“Whilst technology has advanced and many devices are more efficient at delivering vapour/nicotine they are still many users who rely on strengths higher the 2% to divert their attention from combustible tobacco. When lower nicotine strengths tend to go hand in had with more powerful devices – it stands to reason, therefore, that larger bottles and greater strengths of nicotine need to be available to accommodate the varying needs of individuals depending on whatever is required to keep them off traditional cigarettes. Users of high powered devices may be satisfied with lower nicotine strengths but there has to be consideration for the remaining millions of smokers who need to be encouraged to make the switch. We cannot have a closed door policy, where only those who have already made the switch are the only users to be taken into consideration.
Tank size- huge mention has been made (and vastly exaggerated) over the potential hazards of some filling mechanisms; if this is the case why are users being encouraged to refill more often. If larger tanks remain available surely this would be considered ‘damage limitation’.
The limit of container size for E liquid is ridiculous, it is unwarranted as it offers no risk reduction and would only serve to increase cost of transportation and manufacture, increased waste and cost to the end user.
All of the restrictions combined will limit availability of this technology and encourage smokers back to tobacco which is easily available. I, personally haven’t had a cigarette in nearly four years, vaping has been the only long term solution for my being smoke free. Before discovering this technology I had tried every conceivable method of smoking cessation with very little success. I was so amazed at the ease of switching to vaping I wanted to encourage others, which is what lead to my opening a shop”.

Colin Hawkins (Stoke on Trent):

“Smoked up to 40 a day for around 30 years, tried every type of quitting mechanism, hypnosis, gum, patches and nothing worked for more than a couple of weeks, started vaping 4 years ago and have not touched a cigarettte since, massive health improvements as well.”

 

1 – http://londoneconomics.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/High_nicotine_e-cigs_ban-Feb14.pdf

2 – http://ash.org.uk/files/documents/ASH_1011.pdf

3 – https://hansard.digiminster.com/Lords/2016-05-10/debates/16051044000179/TobaccoAndRelatedProductsRegulations2016

 

We need more Power!

***************UPDATE*****************

Vapers in Power are delighted to say that a kind member of the community has come forward with a donation so we can purchase the goods required. We would like to send our warmest regards to Andrew Scotchmere.

***************UPDATE*****************

Vapers in Power will be attending several events this year and we want to make our presence as effective as we can. We have determined that the best way we can improve our service at events is to get some more POWER! i.e. electricity lol

This would allow us to run a laptop and internet connection to enable people to write to their politician (or sign petitions) on the day. With someone on hand to give them guidance if they haven’t done it before.

IF YOU ARE ABLE TO LEND (OR DONATE) ANY OF THESE PRODUCTS FOR VIP USE WE WOULD BE VERY GRATEFUL.

Ideally we need:
A Leisure battery like this one http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Banner-Energy-Bull-Leisure-Battery-95601-12V-80Ah-/361551903205?hash=item542e2c39e5:g:9BkAAOSwSclXLcdN
Though a fairly high aH car battery might do the trick like one from a diesel vehicle.

An inverter of at least 300w like this sort of thing https://www.amazon.co.uk/Inverter-inverter-notebook-emergency-MRI3013BU-UK/dp/B00INW611Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1462833823&sr=8-1&keywords=inverter

And some sort of trickle charger or automatic charger, a bit like this http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/6AMP-12V-HEAVY-DUTY-VEHICLE-BATTERY-CHARGER-CAR-VAN-TRUCK-ELECTRICAL-CHARGING-/321820321967?hash=item4aedfc68af%3Ag%3A7m4AAOSwHnFVu4ei

Our immediate need is for Vape Collective which we will be attending at the end of May. We have people able to collect in North London area, Cardiff area, Lincoln area, West Yorkshire and Glasgow and the surrounding area, if you have any equipment you would like to pass along.

Please contact us at info@vapersinpower.co.uk if you can help

 

Vapers in Power #Wales2016 results

Vapers in Power candidates Lee Woolls (Cardiff West) and Bernice Evans (Central South Wales) received 96 and 470 votes respectively. We applaud them both for standing up for the Freedom to Choose a much less harmful alternative to smoking.

“It was a vote by vapers against an abhorrent policy-maker and a vote for Vapers in Power. Thanks to all that worked so hard and to those that voted against Drakeford.”  Lee Woolls

“The increase in voters is evidence of the fact that Welsh people are unhappy with the way Wales is controlled. Mark Drakeford no longer has the comfort of a large majority after this result.” Bernice Evans

Mark Drakeford’s much reduced majority is a vindication of the ‪#‎VoteVaperNotLabour‬ campaign and sends a strong message that those who make policy without regard to credible evidence will be held to account. We congratulate Neil McEvoy, a supporter of e-cigs, for fighting such an effective campaign against the Welsh Health Minister and for winning a regional seat.
We would also like to congratulate Kirsty Williams of the Welsh Liberal Democrats and Darren Millar of the Welsh Conservatives for getting re-elected and thank them for their continued support for vaping.   We are very confident that the new Assembly will take a sensible approach to vaping and we propose the setting up of a cross party group to hammer out science based policies.

How to Vote Vaper Not Labour in Wales Tomorrow

The attitudes of the major Welsh parties towards vaping

 

Welsh voters go to the polls on Thursday to elect Welsh Assembly members.  Vapers in Power, along with the other parties, has released a manifesto (1).

The Vapers in Power candidates’ details are here:  

Bernice Evans 

Lee Woolls.


Please remember  to #votevapernotlabour

Wales found itself at the centre of a vaping storm when the Labour Welsh Health Minister, Mark Drakeford, put forward the Public Health Bill with controversial proposals to ban vaping in some public places.  The Bill was narrowly defeated but it seems safe to assume that Welsh Labour will try to force it through a second time if they are re-elected.

So, if you want to give your vote to vaping who should you vote for?

The short answer:   #votevapernotlabour

The longer answer:

1.  Cardiff West and South Wales Central

Vapers in Power is putting up two candidates forward under the Freedom to Choose description on the ballot paper:  Lee Woolls is standing against Mark Drakeford in Cardiff West and Bernice Evans is standing in South Wales Central. Voting for Vapers in Power in Cardiff and South Wales Central will show the main parties that vapers are a force to be reckoned with.

You have two votes for the region so if you do vote for Bernice you could consider using your second vote for either of the next most pro-vaping parties after Vapers in Power:  the Liberal Democrats or the Conservatives.

 

2.  Everywhere else in Wales – #VOTEVAPERNOTLABOUR

Here’s a summary of the main parties’ attitudes to vaping:.

Welsh Liberal Democrats:

Kirsty Williams, the Lib Dem leader, championed the opposition to the vaping proposals in the Health Bill.  The Lib Dem manifesto (2) pledges to:   “Protect an individual’s free right to use electronic cigarettes where they like by opposing Labour’s ban on e-cigs in public places.”   

Welsh Conservatives:

The Welsh Conservative manifesto (3)  promises to: “Support vaping in public and pilot the use of e-cigarettes in NHS smoking cessation services”. The Welsh Conservatives did not support the Health Bill and put forward amendments to remove vaping from the bill.    

Plaid Cymru:

Plaid Cymru’s manifesto can be read here: (4), there are no references to vaping in it and it supports outside smoking bans;  something which Vapers in Power is opposed to.  Plaid Cymru were partly responsible for the Health Bill getting so close to the statute books as they didn’t adopt a party line and allowed their assembly members a free vote.  We have to conclude that they are the least vaping friendly party out of the first three.  

UKIP:

UKIP’s Welsh manifesto can be read here (5) It doesn’t mention vaping, but the position of the party as a whole in the UK is quite vape friendly.   

Welsh Labour:

This is the party you should most avoid if you are trying to use your vote in a vape friendly manner. Their manifesto (6) does not specifically mention vaping but there is widespread evidence that should they come back to power they intend to reintroduce the bill which would have banned vaping in both indoor and outdoor public spaces. (7)

 

(1) http://vapersinpower.co.uk/welshmanifesto
(2) http://www.welshlibdems.wales/full_manifesto
(3) http://www.welshconservatives.com/news/launch-welsh-manifesto
(4) https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/plaid2016/pages/328/attachments/original/1459864681/2016_Plaid_Cymru_Manifesto.pdf?1459864681
(5) http://ukip.wales/2016-manifesto/#1460812410673-72fde7f6-fb99
(6) http://www.togetherfor.wales/read_manifesto
(7) http://www.ehn-online.com/news/article.aspx?id=15448

Vaping changed my life. Vaping saved my life. Vaping is my life.

Lee Woolls, Vapers in Power candidate for Cardiff West on 5 May 2016

13130968_478212152378467_5674453632676004027_o

2010 was a year of incredible transformation for both myself and my wife. We both turned 40 and we both turned our back on cigarettes. Between us we were consuming almost 100 cigarettes a day. I used to struggle to smoke 10 a day and I ended up on           60-a-day. How did that happen?
I tried many times to quit. Patches, gums and Zyban. They all worked for while but the hunger, the unscratchable itch, and the need to deal with other things other than the smoking meant that I relapsed into smoking.
In 2010 I tried an electronic cigarette and, although it wasn’t the same as smoking, I kept going and never smoked a cigarette again. My wife, the same.

13123029_478212939045055_3395077145902502971_o
We started a business and opened our first retail store in 2012. We were nervous about taking on the rates and rent and unsure whether we’d be successful or not. My wife reminded me that we were doing it to help people to move away from tobacco and ‘as long as we cover the costs, we can continue’. She was right. It was never about the money, it was always about showing people the alternatives to smoking tobacco.
4 years on we have 11 stores across Wales and 1 in Scotland. We are bad business people because it was never about the money, it was always about the helping hand and giving confidence to those that wished to stop and had failed using conventional methods, like me.
The attempt to remove freedom of choice for Vapers, tobacco users and business owners is something we need to stand together on. We are the people and the politicians are there to serve us.
Vaping changed my life. Vaping saved my life. Vaping is my life.

 

13112843_478213205711695_1321117551682794496_o