Progressive Calendar 12.16.07
From: David Shove (
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2007 07:42:33 -0800 (PST)
           P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R    12.16.07

1. Enviro authors/TV 12.16 10am/2pm
2. AWC craft sale    12.16 10am
3. Art open house    12.16 12noon
4. Cuba/Venez/Rev/US 12.16 1pm
5. Stillwater vigil  12.16 1pm
6. Impact potluck    12.16 3pm
7. EXCO free college 12.16 5pm
8. KFAI Indian       12.16 7pm
9. Gay playwright/TV 12.16 11pm

10. Community shares 12.17 5pm
11. Joyeux Noel/film 12.17 6:30pm
12. 3CTC/env speaker 12.17 7pm
13. GP 3CD meeting   12.17 7pm
14. E-tools          12.17 7pm

15. Standard Shaefer - The greening of Big Tobacco (part 1 of 2)

--------1 of 15--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: Enviro authors/TV 12.16 10am/2pm

SUN.DEC.16, 10am(Cent.) and 2pm(Cent)
(channel 19 in Minneapolis--check local listings)

Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of

Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger expand on their 2004 essay Death of
Environmentalism in their book ;Break Through.&quot;; The authors argue
for a new politics that embraces investments and innovations in clean
energy to deal with environmental issues.</p>

--------2 of 15--------

From: Meredith Aby <awcmere [at]>
Subject: AWC craft sale 12.16 10am

Anti-War Committee
Annual AWC Craft Sale at Global Gift Fair
SUN, 12/16 @ 10am to 1:30p @ First Universalist Church, 3400 Dupont Ave S,

We are seeking donations and shoppers. If you have a talent for any sort
of craft, please contact us, and donate a few items to the AWC. Volunteers
are needed to work during the sale. And, of course, please come shop with
us, and support a great cause. Our crafts will be part of the larger
"Global Gift Fair" - many vendors will be selling a variety of wonderful
items. Just shop the AWC table first!

--------3 of 15--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: Art open house 12.16 12noon

Gayla Ellis' Artists' Open House
Sun Dec 16 12-5pm
3212 10h Ave S- across street from Powderhorn Park, Mpls Gayla is a local
photographer well-known for her photos of the Mayday celebration and
Maine. A couple times a year she opens her Victorian South Minneapolis
home to feature 12 or so local artisans. Complimentary food & beverages,
homey, low-key atmosphere!

--------4 of 15--------

From: Becky Ellis <bellis48_205 [at]>
Subject: Cuba/Venez/Rev/US 12.16 1pm

Militant Labor Forum:
The Cuban Revolution, Venezuela and Revolutionary Perspectives for the U.S.

Speakers: Róger Calero - Militant staff volunteer who has visited and
written extensively on Venezuela. Camilo Sanchez meatpacker, Socialist
Workers Party. Both participated in the recent Third Venezuela
International Book Fair, in Caracas on November.

Come join them in a discussion on: The U.S.: a possible revolution - the
central theme of the Venezuelan International Book fair.
The example of the Cuban revolution.
Results of the constitutional referendum vote in Venezuela .

Sunday December 16
1311 ½ E Lake St Suite 201 Minneapolis Brunch 1:00 PM Program 2:00 PM For
more information call (612) 729-1205 or e-mail
Militant.Labor.Forum [at] Suggested donation: $8 dinner (high school
students $2), $7 program Traducción al español

--------5 of 15--------

From: scot b <earthmannow [at]>
Subject: Stillwater vigil 12.16 1pm

A weekly Vigil for Peace Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2
p.m.  Come after Church or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song
and witness to the human desire for peace in our world. Signs need to be
positive.  Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers.

If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it.
Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to

For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560

--------6 of 15--------

From: vegan14ever [at]
Subject: Impact potluck 12.16 3pm

Ideas to Mobilize People Against Corporate Tyranny (IMPACT)
Sunday, Dec. 16, 3pm:
Community Potluck / Discussion / Resource Swap
Mayday Bookstore, 301 Cedar Ave. Mpls.

Bring food if you can, ideas if you've got 'em, and a great resource
(zine, book, video, music) to exchange or share with somebody.  We will
eat and commune together.  Awesome door prizes, including Mayday Bookstore
gift certificates and dvds, for participants.

IMPACT meets on the 3rd Sunday of every month @ 3pm
IMPACT (Ideas to Mobilize People Against Corporate Tyranny) is a
grassroots group of concerned citizens whose purpose is to raise awareness
about the impact of corporations on our society, promote sustainable
lifestyles, and mobilize ourselves and our communities to take cooperative
action. We believe another world is possible: a world where people and the
earth are more valued than profits!

--------7 of 15--------

From: Betsy Barnum <betsy [at]>
Subject: EXCO free college 12.16 5pm

The AFSCME strike earlier this semester made many of us think more
critically about what it means to be a "public" university.  In response
to these recent events and other long-standing issues here at the U, a
group has formed to experiment with a model of a truly public university.
This new organization is called the Experimental College (EXCO). EXCO will
offer classes that the public can take and teach for free starting this
spring. I am writing to invite you to teach or take classes through EXCO,
and to spread the word to your students and colleagues so that they can do
the same.

The Experimental College (EXCO) is an autonomous university that resists
the increasingly corporatized and exclusionary university by both
envisioning and enacting a "public" university.  EXCO offers both a model
of what the U might be, and a tool to make it so: EXCO is both an
alternative university outside the U of M, and a subversive university
that seeks to change the U of M from within. To learn more about us,
please go to

Here's a list of other classes we're working on:

Theory and Practice of the Coop
The Politics of Urban Space
How to Organize
Public Access Issues at the U
Theorizing the University
Intellectuals in a Time of War

If you're interested in being a part of EXCO in some way, please attend
our informal info session and potluck on Sunday, December 16, at 5pm, in
room 303 of Coffman Union. I'd also be happy to chat over e-mail about it,
or schedule a meeting with you to discuss it. If you're ready to submit a
proposal, you can go through our sister organization at Macalester: Classes start in February, and we'd like to hear from you
by Dec. 31 if you'd like to teach.

If you're interested but swamped, let me know so I can keep you in the
loop. Please spread the word if you think this is worthwhile, and thanks
for taking the time to read about EXCO.

Lucia Pawlowski Graduate Instructor English Department University of
Minnesota pawl0068 [at]

--------8 of 15--------

From: Chris Spotted Eagle <chris [at]>
Subject: KFAI Indian 12.16 7pm

KFAI¹s Indian uprising for December 16, 2007 from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. CST

COBELL v. NORTON IS A CLASS-ACTION LAWSUIT filed on June 10, 1996, in U.S.
District Court in Washington, D.C. to force the federal government to
account for billions of dollars belonging to approximately 500,000 American
Indians and their heirs, and held in trust since the late 19th century.

Through document discovery and courtroom testimony, the case has revealed
mismanagement, ineptness, dishonesty and delay by federal officials, leading
U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth to declare their conduct "fiscal and
governmental irresponsibility in its purest form."

Then-Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt, Assistant Secretary of the
Interior Kevin Gover and Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin were held in
contempt of court in February 1999 by Judge Lamberth for their departments'
repeated delays in producing documents, destruction of relevant documents
and misrepresentations to the court in sworn testimony. As the case
proceeds, new revelations of false testimony, financial misconduct and
bureaucratic retaliation have continued to surface.

The facts underlying the litigation involve a broad sweep of United States
history. Although U.S. policy in the 1870s was to locate Indians on
reservations, hunger for the land by non-Indians led to a break-up of most
of the reservations starting in the 1880s. Thousands of individual Indians
generally were allotted beneficial ownership of 80- to 160-acre parcels of
land in the break-up. As trustee, the government took legal title to the
parcels, established an Individual Indian Trust and thereby assumed full
responsibility for management of the trust lands. That included the duty to
collect and disburse to the Indians any revenues generated by mining, oil
and gas extraction, timber operations, grazing or similar activities.

As a result of more than a century of malfeasance, the United States
government has no accurate records for hundreds of thousands of Indian
beneficiaries nor of billions of dollars owed the class of beneficiaries
covered by the lawsuit. The suit encompasses approximately 500,000 Indian

The purpose of the litigation - which was filed by Elouise Cobell, a member
of the Blackfeet tribe in Montana, and her co-plaintiffs - is two-fold: to
force the government to account for the money, and to bring about permanent
reform of the system. For lawsuit overview:  Guests are:

Elouise Cobell (Blackfeet), Lead Plaintiff in Cobell vs. Kempthorne. A great
granddaughter of Mountain Chief, one of the legendary Indian leaders of the
West, Ms. Cobell is the Executive Director of the Native American Community
Development Corporation (Montana) a non-profit affiliate of Native American
Bank. Her work on the Individual Indian Monies Trust Correction and Recovery
Project is to reform the U.S. Government's management of Individual Indian
Trust Assets. More:

Keith Harper (Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma) is a partner in the Litigation
department of Kilpatrick Stockton LLP (D.C. office) and heads the Native
American Affairs practice group. Mr. Harper has since inception of the case
represented the plaintiff class of 500,000 individual Indians and continues
to serve as class counsel in the landmark Indian trust funds lawsuit, Cobell
v. Kempthorne. More:

Indian Uprising a one-hour Public & Cultural Affairs program for and by
Native Indigenous People broadcast each Sunday at 7:00 p.m. CST on KFAI
90.3 FM Minneapolis and 106.7 FM St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information
about KFAI and to listen to programs via the internet visit
Programs are archived for two weeks.

--------9 of 15--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at]>
Subject: Gay playwright/TV 12.16 11pm

PBS documentary series POV features a film about Gay playwright TONY
KUSHNER, author of "Angels in America", his growing up in Louisiana and
coming ut to his parents.

SUN.DEC.16, 11pm channel 2
MON.DEC.17, 8pm on channel 17

--------10 of 15--------

From: "wamm [at]" <wamm [at]>
Subject: Community shares 12.17 5pm

Community Shares of Minnesota Holiday Sizzle at Victoria Crossing
Monday, December 17, 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Ten Thousand Villages, 867 Grand
Avenue, St. Paul (Shopping) and Axel's Bonfire, 850 Grand Avenue, St. Paul

Since 1946 Ten Thousand Villages has supported the work of literally tens
of thousands of artisans in over 30 countries in Asia, Africa, Latin
America and the Middle East, making it one the largest fair trade
organizations in North America. Working with more than 100 artisan groups,
they purchase fine pieces from craftspeople with whom they have
longstanding, nurturing relationships. 20% of all sales will be donated to
Community Shares of Minnesota. Across the street at Axel's Bonfire,
complimentary appetizers and desserts will be available, as well as a cash
bar. Free and open to the public. Please note that every donation receive
that night will be matched dollar-for-dollar by a generous $12,000.00
challenge grant from a Community Shares donor. WAMM is a member of
Community Shares of Minnesota.

--------11 of 15--------

From: "wamm [at]" <wamm [at]>
Subject: Joyeux Noel/film 12.17 6:30pm

FREE Third Monday Movie and Discussion: "Joyeux Noel"
Monday, December 17, 6:30 p.m. St. Joan of Arc Church, Hospitality Hall,
4537 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis.

"Joyeux Noel" commemorates the legendary 1914 Christmas truce during World
War I. The film focuses both on the human side of war, and on the
collusion between religion and the state in promulgating stereotypes of
enemy and ally, good and evil. Sponsored by: WAMM Third Monday Movies.
FFI: Call 612-827-5364.

--------12 of 15--------

From: Christine Frank <christinefrank [at]>
Subject: 3CTC/env speaker 12.17 7pm

Paul Wotzka, MPCA Whistleblower and government hydrologist, will speak at
the December 3CTC Environmental Forum on atrazine levels in our aquatic
ecosystems and water.

Mr. Wotzka monitored water quality on the Middle Branch of the Whitewater
River in the Southeastern Driftless Area of Minnesota for the state
Department of Agriculture (MDA).  While doing so he found that the
widely-used corn herbicide, atrazine, showed up constantly in the tested
samples.  From 2001-2006, the levels rose dramatically because of the
increased cultivation of corn for ethanol.  He was asked to testify before
the state legislature about his findings.  After requesting permission to
do so from his supervisor at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, to
where he had transferred, he was put on investigatory leave. Several weeks
later he was fired due to massive pressure from agribusiness concerns.
Wotzka has since filed a whistleblower suit in federal court over the
MDA's continued commitment to corn ethanol.

The event will be held on Monday, December 17th at 7:00 PM at Mayday
Books, 301 Cedar Avenue South, West Bank, Minneapolis.  It is free and
open to the public.  The forum is sponsored by the Climate Crisis
Coalition of the Twin Cities whose business meeting is at 6:00 PM.  All
are welcome.  For further information, Email: christinefrank [at] or
Phone:  612-879-8937.

--------13 of 15--------

From: "Allan Hancock" <3rdcdgreenparty [at]>
Subject: GP 3CD meeting 12.17 7pm

3rd Congressional District Green Party Members,
I have reserved Rm 172 at Ridgedale Library for this coming Monday,
December 17 at 7PM.

Perhaps someone you know might be interested in the Green Party and
wanting to meet some others in our district who would like to share in our
Green Party values.

Agenda: To meet others in our district, plan for energizing this local,
look towards endorsing a GP candidate for U.S. House of Representatives,
other issues that might be brought up concerning our local.

Allan Hancock, Chair 3rd Congressional District, Green Party Minnesota

--------14 of 15--------

From: Jonathan Barrentine <jonathan [at]>
Subject: E-tools 12.17 7pm

New Tools for Public Participation Workshop at Rondo Library
Rondo Library (University and Dale) Monday, December 17 7:00 - 8:30 pm

As part of our ongoing E-Tools For All series at the Rondo Library, St.
Paul E-Democracy will be offering a workshop on New Tools for Public
Participation, Monday, December 17, 7:00 - 8:30 pm.

In this workshop, founder Steve Clift and other St. Paul
E-Democracy volunteers will demonstrate powerful internet tools for
organizations and individuals wishing to be more active in their
communities. Bring your ideas and questions!

As always, the workshop is free, all are welcome to attend, and no
registration is required.

Please go to for a
complete schedule.

--------15 of 15--------

[Excerpts from the article below:

For every 300 cigarettes made in the developing world, one tree is burned
in the curing process.

Phillip Morris document: "PM products are the largest contributor to the
nation's packaging waste stream and a major user of agricultural and water

Cigarettes are the major cause of fires, in homes and in the wild.]

Rachel Carson Kills Millions?         (part 1 of 2)
The Greening of Big Tobacco
December 15 / 16, 2007

"Instinctively we caught the spirit of the times. It was the era when
Rachel Carson's book on the environment came out. It was an era when the
people on our planet became aware. It was an era of the freedom
movement - when the young people, the students during the 60s were
protesting. The Marlboro advertising symbolized a free spirit who was not
chained to a time-clock, it symbolized freedom without being controlled by
a computer. On the other hand, our advertising fit into the idea of nature
that was clean and unpolluted, so we reached the wishes and longings of
many environmentalists, tramps, and adventurers."
 Georg Weisman, The Marboro Story
 Director Emeritus, Philip Morris.

In May of 2007, near the eve of Rachel Carson's 100th birthday, as Senator
Ben Cardin (D-Md) was preparing a congressional bill that would honor the
iconic environmental activist, there was sudden surge of opposition. The
issue was genocide. Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot. Rachel Carson dwarfed them
all, according to The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New
York Sun, and New York Times Magazine. Over decades, they had run opinion
pieces by authors associated with rightwing think tanks suggesting she was
responsible for killing one child every 15 seconds, three million people
annually, and over one hundred million since 1972. Her personal
responsibility for the US ban on DDT allegedly caused untold deaths in the
developing world where restrictions on pesticide hampered agriculture and
set off a chain reaction of needless environmental regulations that
threatened economic freedom. The issues brought up in 2007 were not in any
way new claims or new findings, just recycled accusations from those
papers, but it was enough.

Cardin pulled his bill because pro-DDT Senator Tom Coburn (R-Ok)
threatened to block it. Why so much fuss over a symbolic act and who was
behind it all?

Grassroot activists, bloggers, and scientists lit up their glowboxes,
especially the greens who have always been the closest readers of
rightwing smear campaigns. Tim Lambert, a computer scientist at the
University of New South Wales and widely heralded "expert" on DDT thought
he had the answer. The only force evil enough to attack his hero Rachel
Carson was Big Tobacco. He began to search the public archive of Tobacco
Legacy Archive, a collection of formerly secret company documents released
only recently thanks to the court cases surrounding their products.

Some of the story Lambert got right. In 1998, the new Director-General of
the World Health Organization, Gro Harlem Brundtland had established the
Tobacco-Free Initiative, an effort to establish an international treaty to
enhance tobacco control and promote public health initiatives to reduce
smoking. Horrified, Big Tobacco did what they always did when their
profits were in jeopardy. They paid third parties to attack their enemy.
As Lambert realized, this worked best if some other issue, so-called
larger issue could be used to distract attention, as had happened in the
well-known efforts by the FDA to regulate nicotine.

But Lambert kept investigating. He announced that he had found the man
behind the Carson smear - Roger Bate. Bate had started a fake grassroots
group called Africa Fights Malaria and used it to criticize the WHO as
implementing an inept approach to the malaria crisis. Bates attempted to
get Big Tobacco to support the group, citing his ability to triangulate.
The idea was to use the DDT issue to distract people from tobacco and the
debate around environmental tobacco (ETS or second-hand smoke). The key
elements of Africa Fights Malaria strategy were articulated as:

"Simplify our arguments.

"Pick issues on which we can divide our opponents and win. Make our case
on our terms, not on the terms of our opponents - malaria prevention is a
good example. ...

"this will create tensions between LDCs and OECD countries and between
public health and environment.

The idea was to make the choice appear to be a question of people or
birds. That such a strategy would appeal to Big Tobacco was certainly
true, and Lambert found documents connecting Bate to Philip Morris, but
that is where Lambert began to go awry.

Philip Morris never hired Bate, or at least there is no such record. There
are only records proving that he tried to pitch a smear campaign but did
not get far. In fact, there is some indication that Helmut Reif, Philip
Morris' Director of Science & Technology for it's R&D facility in
Neuchatel, Switzerland (Fabriques de Tabac Reunies), was not thrilled that
Bate had approached other tobacco companies. More importantly, Reif had
been successfully undermining the World Health Organization's science
throughout the 1980s and 1990s; and as one report suggests, he had
developed a host of tactics far more sophisticated than the one's Bate
proposed. Reif had no need of a freelance shill and he no doubt knew
better than to risk exposure by going head to head against someone like
Rachel Carson, whether she was alive or not, especially by using an

Bate got tobacco money anyway, just not from Philip Morris and not until
after the Africa Fights Malaria campaign. RJ Reynolds documents show that
they paid (via a front group) for the publication of What Risk?, a book
Bate edited that had a chapter on secondhand smoke. Even then, documents
suggest RJR wanted to be sure they had their kind of person handling the
chapter of ETS. Bate would later work for the Competitive Enterprise
Institute, an organization that Philip Morris had used during their
expensive anti-FDA campaign, where he would oppose environmental
regulations, but he was by no means an agent provocateur for Big Tobacco.
He was just a free-market fundamentalist and avowed enemy of environmental

Though Bate denied that he was personally behind the Carson attack, he was
attached to several rightwing think-tanks and would eventually join the
Competitive Enterprise Institute, the force behind several laughable "CO2:
We call it life" ads. Also, by the time Lambert had pieced together his
story on the popular Grist environmental news site, The Union of Concerned
Scientists had already exposed the tobacco industry's role in denying
global warming in January of 2007 and connected the Competitive Enterprise
Group to both Big Tobacco and Big Oil.

The real impact of Lambert's digging is that it reveals how Big Tobacco's
malfeasance had become so widely known that there is almost an army of
freelancers like Roger Bate begging to get in on the game. Lambert is
quite right, though, to point out that Bate was using Africa Fights
Malaria to bolster his credentials with rightwing think-tanks. But,
Lambert's suggestion that Big Tobacco is a monolithic entity so greedy and
corrupt that it willingly takes on its enemies in bold, public fashion is
at best a distraction. True, it has been the case from time to time, as
Alan Brandt made clear in The Cigarette Century, that Philip Morris will
embrace flamboyant tactics such as embracing the bill of rights, even
arranging to distribute copies of it to undermine anti-smoking activists.
But the bulk of Big Tobacco's strategy has been to work in the shadows,
using its own PR firms, its own "safe science" advocates.

Even when Big Tobacco has suffered major setbacks, they have striven to
maintain their invisibility, creating a corporate culture arguably as
secretive as the CIA and a business model of undermining efforts to expose
their other damage. Tobacco is without a doubt one of the most destructive
plants on the planet even before it hits the lungs. Only when anti-tobacco
advocates understand how the tobacco industry has deflected notice of
these other evils will they be able to widen the war. And the environment
is good place to start because it is easy to document and already a hot

"The time is now for anti-tobacco advocates and environmentalists to
unite," according to Judith McKay, senior policy consultant for the World
Health Organization. If so, then it is crucial to x-ray the secret
documents and see how Big Tobacco has been able to keep environmental
threats separate from public health concerns, and keeping their actions as
opaque as possible.

                      SMOKE PRINTS EVERYWHERE

Big Tobacco hardly twitched on the release of Rachel Carson's Silent
Spring in 1962. They were certainly aware of the book. They did not,
however, attack it or fear it might draw attention to their own massive
use of pesticide. They embraced it through the public relations firm of
Hill & Knowlton, Inc., one of the most notorious PR firms in the world
having played a hand in everything from greenwashing the chemical industry
to deceiving the US to the start of the first Gulf War. Confidential
documents reveal that they boasted to the Tobacco Industry Research
Committee (TIRC) about how they had influenced the content of several
science journalists covering tobacco issues.

The TIRC was an industry funded entity that granted awards to study the
link between smoking and disease. In effect, it was part of a four-decade
effort to spread scientific disinformation about the link, but as these
minutes from Hill & Knowlton reveal, they liked their doubt cast in
nonscientific terms as well. Hill & Knowlton had a long going effort to
influence media coverage of tobacco issues, but they also liked to find
opportunities to contrast the tobacco industry with other problem
industries. One of the jobs Hill & Knowlton was most proud of concerned a
journalist named George Dusheck, who was not writing about tobacco at all,
but reviewing Silent Spring. After consulting with H & K, Dusheck inserted
a passage about the tobacco industry into his review:

"The reaction of the pesticide industry (to the book) is a sharp contrast
to that of the tobacco industry, when it faced what it feared was an
economic threat from the American Cancer Society's report of smoking and
lung cancer.

"The tobacco companies did not panic, did not abuse ACS scientists as
writers of science fiction horror stories, did not seek to influence any
newspaper's publications or handling of the story.

"They did create a Tobacco (Industry) Research Committee headed by a
respected scientist, Clarence Cook Little, which has worked quietly and
with adequate funds to get at the cause of lung cancer.

"In doing so it has got its viewpoint before the public without hysteria.
And it has continued to sell cigarettes - more cigarettes today than in
1954 when the ACS findings were first reported."

The Duschek example proves both more typical of Big Tobacco's modus
operandi and more enlightening than the Bate/Carson episode. Of course
Clarence Cook Little was exactly the kind of shill anti-tobacco forces
love to vilify and rightfully so. Few have done more to undermine the
concept of "sound science" than he. But here he appears the voice of
reason and moderation. What is more noteworthy, however, is how the
missteps of the chemical industry are used as an occasion for contrast
with the tobacco industry. The tobacco industry appears socially
responsible, prudent, and respectful of its opposition. Even more
remarkable is the fact that Silent Spring was almost devoid of tobacco
references. Carson had mentioned - almost as an aside - that arsenic
content in tobacco increased six hundred percent since the mid-1940s as
result of DDT remaining in the soil even after its use on tobacco had
ceased. Her point was simply that pesticide residue remained in the soil
and was in no way critical of tobacco itself. There was no necessity to
bring the tobacco industry into the review unless the intention was to
substitute one health crisis for another, and deflect attention from Big
Tobacco's connection to the pesticide issue entirely.

Amusingly enough, in 1964, a stockholder wrote to A.H. Galloway, the
president of RJ Reynolds about Silent Spring. The stockholder suggested
the book might be helpful. He wanted the company to fund the natural foods
movement or what is now thought of as organic or local food movements. He
thought doing so would distract from the crusades against the golden leaf.
No doubt environmentalists like Lambert would have preferred that Big
Tobacco follow that more salacious and more risky route. Should RJR have
distributed the book or promoted it, it might easily have caused readers
to wonder about what they were really smoking. But even if RJR had done so
quietly and with plausible deniability, it would have been entirely
consistent with the industry's pattern of divorcing public health from
larger environmental issues, and in particular, its pattern of
triangulation. It seems, as is often the case, the stockholders understood
the business model well before the business' critics.


Even the best attempt to link tobacco with environmental crisis has
garnered little attention: the January 2007 report by the Union of
Concerned Scientists, for example, is arguably the best and boldest salvo
on record. That report documented, much more carefully than British
journalist George Monbiot's recent work "Heat", how Big Oil is now using
not only Big Tobacco's disinformation techniques to contest global
warming, but also the very same public relations firms, and in many cases
the same bogus scientists. However, subsequent UN reports on the need to
act now include not one word about the 1 billion people slated to die from
cigarettes and certainly not a word about the well-documented role of the
tobacco industry as a leading cause of deforestation, desertification, and
thus global warming.

Well-documented is not well told, it seems, especially when the subject is
disaster. The task is not to just tell the story about how Big Tobacco
used deception in both health and environmental matter, but to show how
Big Tobacco managed to separate health and the environment in the public
discourse insofar as their products were concerned.

An internal Philip Morris memo from 1996 shows the general trend continued
long after the health risks had become clear. In discussing the increasing
pressure on corporations to pay for the environmental damage their product
manufacturing might cause, an unidentified Philip Morris executive writes:

"There has been a recent report of the President's Commission on
Sustainable Development which we're concerned about. There's also a U.N.
group looking at this.

"One big issue is the ICC (International Chamber of Commerce ) Charter for
Sustainable Development. PM is the only major company not to sign it. Why?
Because it equates environment with health, and obviously PM doesn't want
to put itself in a position of saying we won't sell products that have
health implications to their consumers."

The Philip Morris statement could easily describe the modus operandi of
the entire industry since the early 1970s, a time in which health
professionals had largely agreed that smoking itself was the cause of many
diseases, but during which the controversy around ETS ("environmental
tobacco smoke" or secondhand smoke), was just beginning.

As tobacco historian Alan Brandt points out in The Cigarette Century,
Philip H. Abelson, the editor of Science became one of the first and most
prominent voices in the United States to describe secondhand smoke as "air
pollution," in 1967. Abelson specifically placed emphasis on the fact that
nonsmokers often had no choice about accepting its risks. That emphasis
seems prescient today given that so much of the controversy around smoking
has hinged on the fact smokers have felt they were only endangering

But Abelson was one man sitting on high, an elite editor. He could have
been neutralized with methods like the ones Hill & Knowlton had bragged
about to the TIRC or with the usual quote mining that is the modus
operandi of oppositional research. Abelson's finest contribution was to
inspire grassroots activists such as GASP (Group Against Smoking
Pollution). By virtue of their very name they deployed the word
"pollution" in public discourse more than anyone else. During the 1970s,
they were the ones who pushed and got local laws to restrict smoking. Of
course, they were somewhat offset at least initially by Astroturf
organizations (fake grassroots groups) such as the smokers-rights groups
funded by Big Tobacco. To be clear, the smoker's rights groups were not a
pure PR invention. There was legitimate anger among smokers as they began
to feel more and more like third-class citizens. But if they found smoking
turned them into pariahs, it had as much to do with the flimsy defense
that tobacco companies offered as it did anything relating to a New

To counteract secondhand smoke concerns, Big Tobacco first produced
reports suggesting that building ventilation would offset indoor smoke.
The suggestions ranged from simply opening windows to installing air
filters in offices. However, by 1981, thanks to the National Academy of
Sciences, the industry could no longer effectively compartmentalize this
issue. By the end of the 1980s, ETS had been implicated in everything from
children's earaches, childhood asthma, cervical cancer (often in
nonsmoking wives of smokers), sudden infant death syndrome, and
cardiopulmonary disorders. Even Philip Morris lawyers conceded this and
more in 1994. Even as smoking was banned on airplanes and other common
areas, the industry kept hoping to keep the issue compartmentalized as an
issue of nuisance and personal decorum, especially in the US and the UK.

When Philip Morris began to reflect on who and what threatened their
efforts to divorce the environment from health issues, it issued an
"Executive Summary of Paper on PM Environmental Giving" that acknowledged
that it was the largest contributor to the nation's packaging stream and
that it was well aware that environmental activists were beginning to make
cigarette executives uncomfortable. It insisted:

"Grassroots mobilizations and environmental politics are not to be
underestimated. Our products have been boycotted by
environmentally-concerned groups as diverse as state Public Interest
Research Groups, recycling advocates, and the "Wise Use" movement."v

What is striking is the concern over boycotted products, rather than in
mobilizing for local laws and regulations that was historically the real
catalyst for Philip Morris' decline in stature. The second striking aspect
of this report is how throughout it repeatedly states that appearing green
is crucial to sustaining their business model. It also reveals that by
1994, citizens had come to regard the environment as "second only to guns
and crime." In essence, the furor over ETS did not rank as a major concern
either to Philip Morris or what it called "citizens." Furthermore, the
stakes would forever seem higher if opposition were focused on the
environment: "Everything we produce relies on agricultural production."
This document even acknowledges that Philip Morris' Corporate Affairs had
a five-year plan that emphasized environment, image, and corporate
contributions. Why then did people like Ableson or even GASP not then
widen the terms of the debate? Why did they not start investigating
exactly what kind of environmental contributions the companies had in
mind? Or, put another way, why did they not attack the very idea of Philip
Morris as a legitimate business? Were they exhausted even in victory from
the prolonged battle over ETS?

Activist-journalist Alexander Cockburn, who had written about Big
Tobacco's impact on developing countries in the 1970s, described the
problem like this, "The left generally didn't get involved in taking on
the tobacco companies because they all smoked like chimneys, and many
still do." But part of the answer might also do with the experts, who felt
perhaps hemmed-in by their field of expertise, usually health related. But
what experts do best is draw attention to the unseen externalities, the
fallout and the spillover such as the role tobacco plays in deforestation
and global warming. They could have reached out to people involved in
those struggles. If the truth is told, though, the greens and anti-tobacco
advocates were behind the curve by 1977, not 1994.

Secret documents from that year reveal that already Big Tobacco had
anticipated a wider assault on its environmental impact and particularly
that its environmental impact could be easily shown to affect people on a
global scale. Nowhere perhaps is this clearer than in inter-office
correspondence from 1977 in which Murray D. Rosenberg briefed Philip
Morris executives on the "greenhouse effect."

Rosenberg credited Helmut Wakeham, Vice President and Director of Research
& Develop at the time, and arguably one of the most cold-blooded
characters in the entire tobacco saga, for anticipating the issue.
Rosenberg's report tutored the other executives on the potential threat to
the tobacco industry.

Unlike Big Oil's contention that carbon dioxide is a natural component of
the atmosphere and thus harmless, Rosenberg's report acknowledged that
man-made carbon dioxide is a dire threat to life on the planet,
particularly the amount produced from fossil fuels. Rosenberg calculated
the annual contribution of cigarette-produced carbon dioxide at 0.0018% of
the annual total generated by man. The 0.0018% figure while seeming to
exonerate the tobacco industry could easily be shown as incomplete and
that is probably why it was never released to the public - why attract
attention to an issue no one was paying monitoring? The figure did not
take into account issues like deforestation, paper waste, fuel used to
ship tobacco and cure it, nor did he mention that smoking also releases
methane, another greenhouse gas.

Currently, the anti-tobacco advocates estimate smoking across the globe
generates about 2.6 billion kg of CO2 and 5.2 billion kilograms of methane
every year. It takes one acre of forest to cure (dry) an acre of tobacco ,
which is quite a separate calculation from the amount of forest consumed
in packaging, newsprint ads, and paper to wrap the cigarettes. In Uruguay
and South Korea and Uruguay, forty percent of the annual deforestation is
tobacco-related. In Malawi, where only three percent of farmers grow
tobacco, almost 80 percent of the trees cut down for curing it.

These are more recent numbers than Rosenberg's but even then, the best
deforestation estimate is over a decade old. That is precisely the
problem. It's safe to say that by the late 1970s, anti-tobacco advocates
had fallen behind, drained in part by the necessary struggle against
second-hand smoke, and unaware that Big Tobacco anticipated a much larger

Philip Morris, for example, claimed in a 1997 document it gave its first
environmental grant "to help create Keep America Beautiful," in 1956. In
fact, the organization began in 1953. Nevertheless, Philip Morris received
a letter from K.A.B. in 2000 that allowed them to maintain the language
"founding member" for its timeline advertisements. The discrepancy would
hardly be worth mentioning except that Keep America Beautiful was from the
start a greenwash vehicle started by business executives in the beverage
and packing industry. At the time, they were afraid Congress might start
requiring them to be responsible for the litter their products
contributed. Though often credited as a successful anti-litter advertising
campaign, Keep America Beautiful was really a lobbying arm of the packaged
products industries, designed to make those industries look responsible,
names and dates forever not withstanding. According to Wally Lamb's
investigation of secret tobacco documents, Keep America Beautiful's own
anti-butts policy was molded by Philip Morris and even then reluctantly
embraced. This is but one example of the industry's attempts to enhance
its opacity even as it tried to address the question of litter that was
just starting to be raised.

Even without the secret documents available today, Keep America
Beautiful's famous crying "Indian" billboards and commercials should have
been enough to build some outrage. The history of 19th century
conservation is the history of not only the genocide of Native Americans,
but also the ecocide of the Great Plains and the overgrazing of pastoral
lands by westward settlers. It may be that to oppose the corporations
sponsoring those ads would have required a collective introspection few
imperial nations ever approach. Nevertheless the exploitation of the
crying Indian on that 1971 billboard was undeniable proof that among
Americans, the only environment that mattered was the one beneath their
own feet.

Outside the US, where secondhand smoke had hardly been a mobilizing issue,
there were rumblings about deforestation and environmental devastation as
early as 1914, when World War I brought smoking into vogue.


In lesser developed countries where increasingly more and more tobacco was
grown only to end up being shipped to the US and England for processing,
indigenous people noticed that the crop altered their traditional
agricultural heritage. One of the earliest mentions of how tobacco
affected Africa comes from the Director of Agriculture in Nyasaland
(currently Malawi). He cited the tobacco industry's environmental hazards
as early as 1914 when he declared:

"Eucalyptus is undoubtedly the fuel tree for Nyasaland and steps are now
being taken by the Chief Forest Officer ... to establish fuel plantations
in the villages under the various chiefs and headmen to try and put a stop
to the rapid deforestation."

There are a few more scattered mentions of the problem in the developing
nations after this one, but almost entirely they consist of anecdotes like
the one above. The first concerted wave of documented, quantitative
attention by Westerners does not occur until the 1980s.

The sporadic attention given to the issue in the 1970s on issues such as
deforestation, pesticide use, and the industry's effects on the "third
world" was met by an active campaign to undermine the few statistics being
compiled by anti-tobacco forces, most vociferously in the pages of Tobacco
Briefing, an industry publication devoted almost exclusively to
confronting environmental research into tobacco. One of their main tactics
was elementary use of misdirection.

For example, in order to minimize reports on forest acreage lost to
tobacco farming, Tobacco Briefing would cite a greater amount of wood lost
to fuel cooking in lesser-developed countries, thus finessing the fact
that cooking is essential to feeding humans and tobacco is not. Just as
with the Rosenberg report never being released to the public, despite its
seeming exoneration of the tobacco industry, the propaganda within Tobacco
Briefing remained largely in-house.

Big Tobacco understood clearly that fighting on the terrain of incomplete
science and cooked numbers - while helpful to the morale and control of
its subordinates such as growers and their advocates - opened them to
jeopardy in the larger public discourse. It was better for Big Tobacco to
attack its opponents from within more opaque institutions such as
advertising regulative bodies. The anti-tobacco advocates, however, felt
brash ads and salacious statistics would help them win the war for public
opinion.  Sometimes it would, but often they were all too willing to
narrow their focus whenever Big Tobacco attacked from behind bureaucratic

A case of brash assault, followed by timid withdrawal began on June 5th,
1978 when an independent television agency in the UK broadcast a report by
"World in Action," roughly the UK equivalent to "20/20". The event
coincided with the publication of "Tobacco and the Third World: Tomorrow's
Epidemic?" by journalist Mike Muller, one of the first to draw mass
attention to the industry's environmental impact. Muller drew attention to
many economic injustices in regard to tobacco farming such as the tobacco
crops replacing food crops. He also produced eye-catching environmental
statistics. He estimated that cigarette manufacturing machine use four
miles of paper per hour to roll and package cigarettes.

But his most sensational statistic was that for every 300 cigarettes made
in the developing world, one tree is burned in the curing process. The
World Health Organization in 1980 (WHO) and the World Bank in 1984 both
reprinted the statistic. But in 1993 tobacco industry forces had
sufficiently undermined its legitimacy that ads using it and likeminded
statements were pulled from the air in the United Kingdom. "World in
Action" continued for over a decade producing hard-hitting shows about the
tobacco industry's advertising to children and the dangers of secondhand
smoke. It did not, however, return to the environmental impact of Big
Tobacco, nor ever mention the occasional academic papers quietly piling up
that held far harsher verdicts on Big Tobacco's contribution to
deforestation or environmental degradation.

The most glaring evidence that anti-tobacco forces had failed to embrace
Muller's innovation occurred in July of 1983 when Simon Chapman produced a
64 page pamphlet called The Lung Goodbye, A Manual of Tactics for
Counteracting the Tobacco Industry in the 1980s. A deliciously noirish
piece of agitprop full of concrete suggestions, the pamphlet contained not
a word about expanding the fight to include environmental alliances; this
was true despite Chapman's insistence that the best tactic of all was to
inflict constant scorn on the industry with the hope of "radicalizing the
movement." His suggestions were so aggressive that he felt compelled to
remind readers that most of his tactics were legal. The omission of
environmental alliances seems even more of historical significance given
the fact that Simon Chapman, an Australian sociologist, would later win
the World Health Organization's World No Tobacco Day Medal in 1997, along
with many other accolades. More importantly, he later produced Tobacco in
the third world: a resource atlas in 1990. That publication, perhaps more
than any other, marked the single strongest and most widely cited
environmental assault on Big Tobacco to date. It contained an entire
chapter dedicated to the issue, albeit culled from several admittedly thin
but frequently cited sources. It also included references to other
environmental issues such as overuse of pesticide as well as its
debilitating effect on farmers. It certainly could have marked the moment
when Big Tobacco became tagged an environmental menace. Instead it serves
to document how little the issue had been studied.

In 1992, however, US Surgeon General Novello issued what the industry
perceived as a denunciation of the deforestation claim, specifically the
300 to 1 statistic. It came almost ad hominem in a report issued primarily
to address smoking and health in the Americas, and it occurred not in a
section about the environment, but in a section on "economic
externalities," about which it was generally favorable to the industry as
a whole. Still, Novello noted in no uncertain terms that data on tobacco
and deforestation was relatively slim, often produced by the industry
itself, and that most of it was out of date. Regardless, Novello, much to
the industry's delight, concluded "deforestation associated with tobacco
curing cannot currently be considered a significant negative externality."
The statement, taken out of context, would quickly become a major talking
point in tobacco industry publications such as Tobacco Briefing, published
by the International Tobacco Growers Association (IGTA), a shadowy,
quasi-governmental alliance organized around little more than the idea of
actual growers.

Despite the fact that Novello clearly contradicted what the industry
declared was the "definitive report," the ITGA declared 300 to 1 statistic
dead. It would resurface occasionally often in independent journalists'
broader stories about the tobacco industry, but anti-tobacco advocates
simply passed over it in silence. They concentrated on fighting youth
smoking and second-hand smoke almost exclusively throughout the 1990s.

What is remarkable, however, is that after the Surgeon General's Report of
1992, rather than publicize the other damaging articles about tobacco and
deforestation that began to come out, anti-tobacco advocates rarely
returned to the theme.

Nevertheless, the industry's targeting of children and the obfuscation
they manufactured around secondhand smoke sufficiently damaged their
image, and anti-tobacco advocates deserve a great deal of the credit for
that. As result, during the 1980s until about 1992, the tobacco industry
continued its meager environmental giving, as a glance through their
annual reports reveals, but they remained reserved about publicizing it.
Evidently, they did not want to overstate their environmental record and
receive further scorn.

                     HOW GLOBAL IS YOUR WARMING?

By 1993, the tobacco industry had to address deforestation more directly
at least within the United Kingdom. An organization with a title more
officious than official, the Health Education Authority (HEA) began a
series of magazine ads that linked tobacco to the destruction of the
rainforest. The timing seemed exactly right for an organization devoted
largely to issues of youth smoking. Their target was a generation of kids
growing up in the aftermath of Earth Day and "save the rainforest"
campaigns. Artists such as Sting and a commercially resurgent,
MTV-oriented Grateful Dead were prominent donors to rainforest campaigns
at this time and their influence on fans and younger bands brought great
visibility to the rainforest issue. None of the celebrities, however, drew
attention to the role of the tobacco industry in deforestation. That fell
to the rather puny HEA.

These ads are nearly impossible to track down, but they were pivotal from
the point of view of the tobacco industry. From ITGA propaganda there
remain hints about what the ads contained. For example, one slogan was
"When tobacco companies burn the rainforest only one plant survives." The
plant in question was not, as one might expect, the tobacco plant, but the
cigarette manufacturing plant; perhaps a slightly awkward play on words,
but with visual aid, perhaps poignant overall.

The UK's Advertising Standards Authority, the regulative entity charged
with handling reckless promotional claims, (and prompted by the IGTA)
ruled that the ads were too broad. Too many other factors and industries
caused rainforest devastation. The law simply would not allow the type of
scorn Simon Chapman favored to be piled on any business. As result, the
Advertising Standards Authority pulled the ads and as confidential "media
response" documents show, the tobacco industry was prepared to use the
incident to intimidate other like-minded tree-hugging upstarts.

The HEA continued to push the deforestation issue and published a booklet
in which it alleged 150 large trees were cut and burned down to cure one
acre of tobacco. Perhaps so. The HEA also alleged that the average smoker
thus causes one tree every two weeks to be felled. Here their bold
assertions backfired because they assumed one tree per 5.56 kg of tobacco,
equivalent to 5,600 cigarettes in two weeks time or 397 cigarettes each
day. A smoker would then have to consume 12 cigarettes every hour for more
than 33 hours in order to fulfill the HEA's claims. This kind of bloated
rhetoric opened the HEA up for what would become a typical IGTA attack.
Not simply a matter of choosing a less outrageous number of trees per
cigarette, the issue became a matter of why a health advocacy group should
be able to pronounce on environmental concerns.

From that point on, the HEA dissipated, eventually swallowed by another
entity called the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence
(NICE) and most importantly, it no longer focused on the intersection of
health and the environment.

In retreating from the tobacco/environment debate, the HEA missed an
opportunity to raise the stakes because nearly every document the industry
produced in response to deforestation claims reiterated that wood was not
the main source of curing fuel. Coal was. The logical move would have been
to link tobacco curing not simply to deforestation, but to the greenhouse

In a 2000 World Health Organization report outlining, among many other
cloak-and-dagger episodes, how the IGTA undermined several tobacco control
efforts within the UN, it becomes clear that the IGTA learned a great deal
from the HEA episodes.

Essentially, the ITGA argued that health organizations had no business
discussing business. Once again the signature tactic was triangulation.
The IGTA was the tobacco industry's greatest asset in forcing tobacco
control outside the bounds of the WHO. The ECOSOC or UN Economic and
Social Council became a rival of the WHO due to the IGTA's relentless
lobbying efforts. The best summation came from internal correspondence
from British American Tobacco:

"Up until now, it has been the World Health Organization which has
provided the major thrust in international anti-tobacco activities.

"It has, however, been persuaded that some of the issues - particularly
those to do with economic, environmental, and social aspects - are beyond
its competence. We can therefore expect a number of UN agencies to get
into the act. It is to be hoped that they do not bring to their
participation any prejudicial anti-tobacco sentiments and that we can
expect a rational and objective treatment of our common concerns."

Of course, of the three areas mentioned here - economic, environmental,
and social - the economic became central. By exaggerating the economic
benefits of tobacco farming to lesser developed nations, Big Tobacco could
easily foment more bureaucratic divisions, recasting health and
environmental concerns as elitist concerns on the part of "First World"
busy bodies. Anytime Big Tobacco could say, "Rich countries care about
trees. Poor countries care about jobs," it would do so, the Director of
Agriculture in Nyasaland be damned. Needless to say, it was exactly along
this set of reasoning that the smear job on Rachel Carson took place, and
for that reason, excessively defending her against a baseless attack only
reinforces the perception that rich countries look at the environment from
a place of profound privilege. In this way, the tobacco industry was able
to appear more leftwing, more socially conscious than its opponents.

Because of the history of bureaucratic infighting and because that
infighting has been the result of dividing the economic, environmental,
and social aspects of tobacco, Dr. Judith McKay, a senior policy advisor
to the World Health Organization has argued, "Every tobacco meeting should
have a sector on the environment, and every environmental meeting should
have a section on tobacco. "Surely the logic at work in such a statement
applies not only to the UN, but also to those mysterious radicals Simon
Chapman, the doctor of scorn, sought to inspire.

[end part 1 of 2]


   - David Shove             shove001 [at]
   rhymes with clove         Progressive Calendar
                     over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02
              please send all messages in plain text no attachments

 To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg
 --------8 of x--------
 do a find on
                            impeach bush & cheney
                            impeach bush & cheney
                            impeach bush & cheney
                            impeach bush & cheney

  • (no other messages in thread)

Results generated by Tiger Technologies Web hosting using MHonArc.