FORCES columnists offer news and perspectives on such issues as smoking and public policy, smoking and science, and the increasingly evident slippery slope that is leading to tobacco prohibition. They also venture into adjacent territory to chart the course of an authoritarian and censorious political and bureaucratic elite that uses state-of-the-art propaganda techniques, corporate handouts and tax dollars to woo the public towards a vision of the future that offers utopian illusions about health and safety in exchange for the privacy and freedom of both mind and body.

The concerns of our columnists range from a detailed examination of local legislative issues to broader philosophical considerations touching, for example, on the gradual (and decidedly undemocratic) globalization of public health policy.



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Latest Articles


  • Drink and drive ... or smoke
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 25 March 2009
    A friend of mine, touring through Canada by car, came across a very amusing roadside billboard and thought it was worth a stop to photograph it.

  • Second hand research
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 23 January 2009
    Morbidity and mortality from heart attacks have been declining for several years in both Europe and North America. This trend had long been observed before the smoking bans came into being.

  • Fog, Smog, and Smoke
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 2009/01/05
    A Philippine journalist criticizing road traffic complains about exhaust ... from tobacco smokers!

  • Smoking and Diabetes
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 26/11/2008
    SURSUM CORDA: slowly but certainly, humanity is approaching immortality. Vaccines and antibiotics have nearly vanquished all types of infections and, as days go by, the New Medicine is discovering the single cause of most, if not all, diseases. Once the cause has been confirmed, the only way people will die will be from accidents, murders and suicides. But that is a problem for the politicians, easily solved by issuing appropriate bans. The trouble of overpopulation will be technologically overcome by building cities in the oceans and the seas, and relocating people to man-made planets. Food is not a predicament: Genetically Modified Organisms will take care of all is needed.

    Historians and researchers will be busy trying to find out how people used to die prior to the fifteenth century when tobacco became popular in Europe. After that, as we all know, the single cause of all diseases is smoking tobacco, as is irrefutably demonstrated by  an incalculable quantity of "studies" and "research".

    One of the recent discovery is the cause of diabetes.

  • An Arrow-shot Against Antismokers
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 18/07/2008
    A study on lung cancer sure to disappoint anti-smoking crusaders comes from the May 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, where we find a study by Ping Yang, MD, a Professor of Epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minnesota, entitled "Alpha1-Antitrypsin Deficiency Carriers, Tobacco Smoke, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, and Lung Cancer Risk".

  • Big Pharma under investigation
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 21/01/2008
    If anyone has ever wondered if FORCES's accusations regarding Big Pharma were the maniacal materialization of an enemy to fight, like Don Quixote's windmills, read the following news:

  • Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 04/12/2007
    On November 26, 2007, in a Radiological Society of North America press release, I read shocking news:

  • Bupropion and teenage smokers
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 30/11/2007
    Once upon a time, when amongst fellow doctors one would refer a medically interesting finding or article, it was enough to say where one had read it to get, or fail to get, attention.

  • He who attends a lame person learns how to hobble along
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 05/10/2007
    It's said that he who attends a lame person learns how to hobble along. In other words, sharing experience with another or others may influence one's own perceptions and behaviour: for example, if one spends most of his time with softheaded folks, after a few years he'll have a good chance of becoming a cuckoo himself.

  • Smokers' Acne Face
    Details Author(s): Elio F. Gagliano, MD
    Article Published: 26/09/2007
    Women who smoke are more likely to develop a form of non-inflammatory acne (NIA) than are those who do not.


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