CDC’s Frieden in denial about good news on vaping

Actual cigarette smoking among teens, the kind that requires inhaling carcinogenic products of combustion, is down a startling 25 percent in one year and nearly 42 percent since 2011. The reason is the rapid substitution of vaping or e-cigarettes, which hold singular promise as a harm-reduction measure for those drawn to the nicotine habit. Great news, right? Not if you listen to Thomas Frieden of the Centers for Disease Control, who’s doing his best to disguise good tidings as bad so as to stoke the officially encouraged panic about vaping. New York Times columnist Joe Nocera nails Frieden on the issue [h/t @jackshafer], providing a model of appropriately skeptical press scrutiny of someone who hardly ever gets subjected to that. More on Frieden; David Henderson on how FDA hostility to vaping could slow the shift from more-toxic alternatives; related, Greg Gutfeld on California ads trashing e-cigs.

P.S. Andrew Stuttaford thinks Frieden’s not in denial, he knows better.


  • Unfortunately, it’s not about public safety or health. It’s about protecting junk bonds guaranteed repayment from tobacco settlement funds, and how they can “slow down” cessation so they don’t default on their loans.

    The states made a deal with the devil, and we’re the payment.

  • I had my doubts about this guy around the time of the Ebola “crisis”. Now it just seems he is truly a hand puppet.

  • Nice summation of the actual motivations behind this false health scare. So tired of them being “alarmed”. More properly researched and well-presented facts, please. These guys
    charged the California taxpayers 75,000 for on factual-devoid, Joe Camel flashback hack job.
    The vaping community, on the other hand, is solving the scourge of smoking without asking taxpayers for a dime, because we believe in this lifesaving product.
    And we always appreciate facts. Thanks again.

  • Joe Nocera is the NYT’s “thinking man’s liberal.” Krugman filled a similar niche back when he was in the opposition, sniping at the fecklessness of G.W. Bush, but became a lapdog once his own party gained the White House.