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Ear to the Ground

‘To Health’?

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Posted on Jun 26, 2009

Russia led the rankings with a whopping 15 percent of deaths a consequence of alcohol consumption.

A study published in The Lancet medical journal concludes that the effects of alcohol should be viewed in the same light as the effects of smoking. Alcohol consumption is linked to one in every 25 deaths worldwide, the study said.

CBS News:

Alcohol consumption is linked to one in every 25 deaths worldwide, according to a study that concludes the effects of drinking are as harmful as smoking.

In a series of articles published in The Lancet, alcohol is linked to behavioral deaths, like violent injuries, as well as medical conditions like cardiovascular disease, cancer and liver disorders like cirrhosis.

The study found that 3.8 percent of deaths around the world in 2004 (the most recent year for data) were related to drinking - 6.3 percent for men, 1.8 percent for women.

Globally, average weekly consumption was around a dozen 10-ml units of pure ethanol - each unit being the equivalent of a bottle of beer, medium glass of wine or shot of liquor.

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By hippie4ever, June 28, 2009 at 11:38 am Link to this comment

EH is correct about smoking pot & longevity. Latest studies show that THC in cannabis counteracts many harmful effects of tobacco. Apparently THC dislodges certain tumors; also cannabis is a natural expectorant for tars and regularly dislodges such from the lungs of smokers.

Of course the Sheeple believe all the lies told by the racist/classist/capitalist/corporatist media.

I love cannabis: what a beautiful, useful, forgiving and beneficial plant is truly is!  My favourites are sativas such as Blue Dream, Lemon Kush, Skunk, Trainwreck and Wham! on a Stick, but there’s a lot to be said for a good Indica such as Purple Urkle for pain relief.

Hemp (cannabis lacking much THC) will provide us with a cheap, plentiful & environmental source for paper, fabric, food (hemp oil is highly nutritious) and holistic medicine. It’s bio needs are modest & fields of cannabis will soon cover the states already scarred from deforestation.

The brainwashed shake their heads in disbelief, but much exists in this universe that they cannot comprehend. These fools must not be suffered to continue their mindless oppression against we the people.

Once hemp and cannabis are legalised the same sheeple opposing its use with idiotic arguments devoid of fact, will crow loudly that it was always so, that they always supported legalisation, and who wouldn’t?  {sigh}

All truth goes through three stages: first it is violently repressed, then it is ridiculed; finally it is accepted as self-evident (Schoeppenhauer). Most people under 40 (and thoughtful people of all ages) are on stage 3; so like lgbt human rights, legalisation of cannabis is simply a matter of when, not if.

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By angel, June 28, 2009 at 4:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Kudos to the liquor industry for its brilliant manipulation of the American public: Alcohol is the main drug of choice for nearly everyone in America except those few folks whose lives have been hammered to death or nearly so by ethel alcohol. We are manipulated by all the medias as they seduce us with the cool, sophisticated, heart-warming imbibing of this liquid because everyone who matters does it.  And who can deny the wonderful effects!
Anyone with half a brain knows the harm it does to the individual, to families, jobs and the roadway, where much of the drug effect is manifist for all to see.
I like a good glass of wine as much as anyone. But I’m always aware (at least until the second glass) that I’m taking in a toxic substance.
But, hey, denial is a powerful thing.

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By Outraged, June 27, 2009 at 2:37 am Link to this comment

BTW, to the “pot smokers”, don’t be mislead.

The issue is NOT, alcohol v. pot.


I suspect that many buy into anything they would like to hear, and that facts can suddenly be deemed, trite.

THE FACTS are what matters, will you continue to endorse that which you know nothing about but “appears” to support what you have swallowed as qualitative, simply because YOU are now somehow exonerated by fiction.

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By Outraged, June 27, 2009 at 2:14 am Link to this comment

Check it out:

“The Oxford Group was the brainchild of Dr. Frank Buchman, a Lutheran minister. Popular in the 1920s on college campuses and in upscale neighborhoods, the group promoted Buchman’s belief in divine guidance: One should wait for God to give direction in every aspect of life (it wasn’t about alcoholism or any other single problem) and surrender to that advice. Buchman’s program emphasized public confession of sin during meetings at members’ houses, making restitution to those sinned against, and promoting the group to the public. The group’s individualistic bent—if God’s guidance could solve everyone’s problems, social movements seemed useless—divorced it from activism or politics. But when Buchman told a reporter in 1936, “I thank heaven for a man like Adolf Hitler, who built a front line of defense against the anti-Christ of Communism,” the Oxford Group’s fortunes started to fall. After Buchman’s death, in 1961, the group all but disappeared. Few remember his name today, but his principles—surrender to divine guidance, confession, and making amends—live on in another unlikely fellowship.

Wilson, an atheist since age 11, dismissed Thatcher’s claims: “Last summer an alcoholic crackpot; now, I suspected, a little cracked about religion.” But a month later, back in a hospital bed in Towns doped on barbiturates and belladonna (which were used to treat alcoholism at the time), Wilson yelled, “If there be a God, let him show himself!” “Suddenly my room blazed with an indescribably white light,” he wrote in 1957. “I was seized with an ecstasy beyond description. Every joy I had known was pale by comparison.” The next day, Thatcher brought him a copy of William James’s The Varieties of Religious Experience, in which James writes that “the only radical remedy . . . for dipsomania is religiomania.” Wilson would devote his life to the idea that surrender to God was the only replacement for surrender to alcohol….”

....“The group’s near-institutionalization in American society has, however, brought it its share of controversy. Courts often order perpetrators of alcohol-related crimes to attend AA, and some have argued that given AA’s religious underpinnings, their sentences violate the establishment clause of the First Amendment. In 1997 the New York Court of Appeals agreed, ruling that “adherence to the AA fellowship entails engagement in religious activity and religious proselytization.

In recent decades, secular alternatives to AA have sprung up around the country, as have movements advocating moderate drinking and control rather than abstinence and admission of powerlessness. But AA remains the most popular self-help group by far, boasting more than two million members worldwide in over 97,000 groups.”

On Alcoholics Anonymous:

“The scope of AA’s program is much broader than just changing drinking behavior.  AA process encourages the transformation of the alcoholic’ character, producing a “personality change sufficient to recover from alcoholism” while abstaining from alcohol, one day at a time. The personality change is believed to be brought about by means of a spiritual awakening achieved from following the Twelve Steps, helping with duties and service work in AA”

It goes on:

“AA’s program is an inheritor of Counter-Enlightenment philosophy. AA shares the view that acceptance of one’s inherent limitations is critical to finding one’s proper place among other humans and God. Such ideas are described as “Counter-Enlightenment” because they are at variance with the Enlightenment’s ideal that humans have the capacity to make their lives and societies a heaven on earth using their own power and reason.”

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By Outraged, June 27, 2009 at 1:58 am Link to this comment

More entertaining Prohibitionists, how does that go…..

“In general, informal social controls in the home and community helped maintain the expectation that the abuse of alcohol was unacceptable. There was a clear consensus that while alcohol was a gift from God, its abuse was from the Devil. “Drunkenness was condemned and punished, but only as an abuse of a God-given gift. Drink itself was not looked upon as culpable, any more than food deserved blame for the sin of gluttony. Excess was a personal indiscretion.” When informal controls failed, there were always legal ones.”

It goes on:
“The issue was revived by Prohibition Party, founded in 1869, and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, founded in 1873. Despite its name, the latter group did not promote moderation or temperance but rather prohibition of alcohol. One of its methods to achieve that goal was education. It was believed that if it could “get to the children” it could create a “dry” sentiment leading to prohibition. (Supporters of prohibition were nicknamed “Dry”; opponents were called “Wet”.)”

BUT WAIT, There’s more:
“When repeal of Prohibition occurred in 1933, organized crime lost nearly all of its black market alcohol profits in most states (states still had the right to enforce their own laws concerning alcohol consumption) because of competition with low-priced alcohol sales at legal liquor stores.

Prohibition had a notable effect on the alcohol brewing industry in the United States. When Prohibition ended, only half the breweries that had previously existed reopened. The post-Prohibition period saw the introduction of the American lager style of beer, which dominates today.”

Hmmmm.  What about this:

“Most people who read the classic book How to Lie with Statistics do so in order to become more intelligent consumers of statistical information. However, it would appear that many alcohol activists might read the book as a training manual or guide to action.

Understanding statistics is a challenge, which creates a situation in which deception becomes easy. And the tricks and techniques are numerous. Here’s just a sampling.

Spin Story to Journalists
Journalists have a hard job. They‘re very busy and few are competent in statistics and research techniques. So some activists make the journalist’s job easier by preparing catchy headlines and memorable quotes within a well-written press release. Therefore the over-worked journalist doesn’t feel the need to read the actual research report itself but relies on the “spin” given the story by the activist. The journalist can even abstract the activist’s press release and have a ready-made story.”

Good site:

Sadly that’s not the end of the story.

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By samosamo, June 26, 2009 at 8:38 pm Link to this comment

Let me see, get ten groups of men and women with each group comprizing of 100 individuals, may as well include boys and girls, separate them out by units of weight, height, age and existing medical problems and assign them a consumption of say the equivalent from say 0 shots, beers or wine per week to 100 shots, beers or wine per week for each individual in each group and make it a 20 year study.

Check their health at the end of 20 years and see what results there are and that should give at least a clue as what drinking will do for you.

It may not reveal that much but it will make some distillers, brewmeisters, and vineyards happy and profitable.

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By MeHere, June 26, 2009 at 5:56 pm Link to this comment

Beware of health-related articles.  By now, there’s enough information that says there are many flaws in all this stuff.  Many so-called “studies” are superficial, incomplete, preliminary, small, and so on. Any good scientist will confirm this. It is a business. Some physicians have raised questions about material published in prestigious medical journals.  In many instances, the reports that are published are far from being sound. They are biased towards the interests of the corporations that fund the studies.  And let’s not forget that the other big business is the journalism that covers this type of news -tons of articles come out every day.

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By boggs, June 26, 2009 at 3:40 pm Link to this comment

I can’t believe that anyone would have the gaul to say drinking is as harmful as smoking.
We have always known that drinking is way out in front if you want to compare it to the harm smoking does. And remember those ikky puky commercials to offend smokers in the 90’s, yeah, well, drunks puke up way more and smell worse than any smoker. But the difference here that we have to contend with, before we can be honest, is the fact that our legislators in DC own stock in liquor. And, we might say that the liquor lobbiers own the legislators. Cigarettes were not quite the money generator, I guess? Or maybe they just like to drink?
I never heard of a chain smoker ruining a whole family, and family life because he smoked! I never heard of a smoker losing his licence to drive for a couple weeks because he killed someone in an auto accident. I never knew a smoker who did the damage of drunks, and drunks end up needing new livers.
Be somewhat credible if you want to discuss the
dangers of smoking and that of drinking.
Drinking is more dangerous, drinking is more obnoxious, drinking is more repulsive, and drinking does the most harm to others as well as loved ones and friends.

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By Russian Paul, June 26, 2009 at 2:27 pm Link to this comment

Amen to that EH.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 26, 2009 at 2:27 pm Link to this comment

Yeah, but drinking up that likker and yer never gonna get worms.

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By rachel, June 26, 2009 at 1:49 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

disappointed that truth dig would post on article like this.  this is very sloppy reporting.  the original study was even published by someone connected with a treatment center. it’s a biased study by people with an agenda.  people should read “the diseasing of america” by stanton peele about how we allowed recovery zealots to convince our society that we’re “diseased,” etc, because of alcohol consumption, compulsive shopping, gambling, whatever…  if you view everything as a “disease” then it absolves you of personal responsibility for your actions.  anyway, i digress.  the most bizarre claim of this study is that the majority of alcohol related deaths are in europe.  i’m sorry but i highly doubt that.  what are they counting as “alcohol-related”?  this article should be viewed with a heavy does of skepticism.

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By EH, June 26, 2009 at 1:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Smoke pot you’ll live longer.

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