Scientific Evidence Portal
The Health Care Costs of Smoking | Jan J. Barendregt, M.A., Luc Bonneux, M.D., Paul J. Van Der Maas, Ph.D.
Article Published: 1997
Published By: N Engl J Med1997;337:1052-7
Further Information Although politically incorrect nowadays, this study should have been entitled "The Health Care Costs of Non-Smoking". The conclusions of the study are as logical as they are inescapable.
Allegiance to the healthist ideology is declared in the opening and closing statements, as it happens to many studies today if they have to stand a chance to be published (opening statement: "Smoking is a major health hazard, and since nonsmokers are healthier than smokers, it seems only natural that not smoking would save money spent on health care"; closing statement: “We have no doubt that an effective antismoking policy fits the bill”). However, the socially self-defeating insanity of the healthist ideology is clearly stated, as an effective antismoking policy only fits the bill of economic disaster:
“If people stopped smoking, there would be a savings in health care costs, but only in the short term. Eventually, smoking cessation would lead to increased health care costs.”
It does not take a study to establish that, but only a little bit of logic. Even in the assumption that what is said about smokers is true (that they live shorter lives because subject to fast-killing diseases such as heart attacks or lung cancer); even ignoring the far greater contributions of smokers next to non-smokers to the state (thus to the health care system) with their tobacco taxes; even forgetting the beneficial effects of smoking on health; the logical conclusion can only be that a population of "health conscious" non-smokers would drive any conceivable health care system into bankruptcy because of the extremely high costs of treating long-term and often degenerative diseases, which are far more typical of non-smokers, as all people must eventually die.
By projecting this into the future with the metre of the healthist ideology, this means that, in the drive to eliminate all the “preventable” causes of death (and perhaps death itself) and in consideration that, for healthism, any and all values and priorities must be geared primarily to the attainment of long life and ever-lasting health, then any and all resources of society will be eventually absorbed by life prolongation and by the insane pursuit of eternity — to the exclusion of anything else.
Ironically, the healthists call that living.