Posts by Alfie

  • Hard News: E-cigarettes and the path of…, in reply to BenWilson,

    Sadly, it’s probably still safer to smoke weed than vaporize it...

    With oil mixes, yes. Safety is very dependent on what has been added. However when you're vapourising dry material there are no additives and you're only extracting the important bits. IMHO it's one of the purer consumption methods.
    (Five stars)

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: E-cigarettes and the path of…,

    Here's more info on the vitamin E acetate used to thicken black market THC oil, and why it should never be used in vaping liquids.

    Note that no credible vaping company in the US uses this product. It's only being added by a few bad guys in the black market to cut their products and to give the false impression that their oil is thicker and therefore higher quality.

    If Jenny Salesa wants to leave her mark, by all means ban vitamin E acetate in vaping products. No local products will be affected and nothing will change.

    Banning vape flavourings which have helped so many of us to ditch tobacco, when they have nothing whatsoever to do with the recent US deaths, is a foolish response which is pretty much guaranteed to drive a number of ex-smokers back into the hands of tobacco companies.

    Counterproductive. Much.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Barclay and arrogance,

    Attachment

    Ex National MP Todd Barclay spotted recently
    Parsons Green, London
    Photo: Scoop @ Mountain Scene

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: E-cigarettes and the path of…,

    WTF has happened to vaping lately? O'K, there were four or five deaths in the US but they were caused by contaminents added to backyard THC-infused vape juice. The delivery method wasn't the problem.

    I can understand Trump & his cronies move to ban vaping. For a crooked administration in perpetual chaos with 40,000 gun and 50,000 US opioid deaths every year, having a whole four deaths you can blame on something entirely different provides a welcome distraction to feed to the masses via the battle-proven Fox and Facebook influence machines.

    Does this flimsily-evidenced hysteria need to carry over to New Zealand? Really? Jenny Salesa thinks so.

    Associate Health Minister Jenny Salesa said she would introduce a bill on vape regulation to Parliament in a few weeks which would limit vape flavours to tobacco, menthol and mint.

    What an outstandingly dumb idea. That's like trying to solve NZ's far more serious problem with alcohol by legislating that the only beers you will be able to buy from now on will be either DB or Lion Red. And away with your chardonnays -- the brave new world of Salesa's imagination is likely to be restricted to just a couple of generic flavours of cask wine branded 'Drainwater' to further discourage young drinkers.

    Meh.

    This complete lack of common sense hasn't stopped some school principals from jumping onto the hysteria bandwagon cos... prohibition works, amiright?

    As a former smoker I never had much time for ASH, but they seem to be the only group taking an evidence-based approach to vaping at the moment. Ben Youdan from ASH says the ban will not have the desired effect.

    He said surveys showed some year 10 pupils had tried vaping, but very few were regular users.

    "We know that probably around about a third have tried even just a single puff of an e-cigarette or a vape device.

    "Still, less than around 3% are daily or weekly or regular vapers, and of those who are, almost all of them are, or were, smokers."

    From my perspective, none of the medical options like patches and pills ever worked for me in the long term. Vaping was the one tool which finally allowed me to kick tobacco, phasing out nicotine entirely over six months. If we're serious about kicking tobacco, vapes should be made available to addicted smokers via doctors. They work.

    By the way Russell, I've seen you mention elsewhere that we should stop referring to the "at least 95% safer" when discussing vapes. That was the conclusion of Public Health England's expert review in 2015. It's one of the more credible studies available it would be remiss to dismiss its findings that "e-cigarettes are around 95% safer than smoked tobacco and they can help smokers to quit." I've yet to see plausible evidence to contradict that figure.

    Most smokers turning to vapes are likely to choose a tobacco flavour initially, but it's not a particularly pleasant taste and you experiment until you find one or two flavours which suit you better. They become a portable and pleasant little background aroma to your life.

    Banning flavours or restricting them to just three foul-tasting options will either drive people back to tobacco or straight to the black market, where supply will always expand to meet demand. Of course a few people might get sick or die from inhaling contaminents in backyard juice, but that's just the price of freedom. Or something.

    Double meh.

    This government has more important issues to deal with. Buying into a Trumpian distraction and introducing legislation to tackle a problem that doesn't really exist seems like a pointless waste of time and energy.

    Maybe just stick with the evidence on this one?

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years…,

    Hey. I bought a copy of that issue after the cover grabbed me. For a wee kiwi just back from his OE, it was refreshing to read a sensible and enlightened New Zealand perspective at that time.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Envirologue: Swamp Monsters – the…,

    Nah. It seems that Te Uru Rākau -- the Ministry for Primary Industry's forestry arm -- gets to decide what is art and what’s a just a great hunk of kauri. The same people who have been rubber stamping illegal kauri exports for years are still running the show.

    Log is in the eye of the beholder.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Who are the medicinal…,

    The MoH has just released their consultation document on medicinal cannabis. There's a lot to take in but I see they're suggesting defining any grow under 200 sqm as "small". That's twice the size of our house!

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Dirty Politics,

    And as an aside, our own mini-Crosby Textor outfit Topham Guerin -- mentioned above -- are being credited with helping the aussie right to win an “unwinnable” election.

    Manipulation trumps democracy too often these days.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Dirty Politics, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Then of course there's that other thing that happened recently, with NZ Customs intercepting the manuscript of the Boiled Whale book for no apparent legal reason.

    Motive? Who could possibly have had something to fear from any new revelations in the book? Not Slater... he has nothing of value any more and that includes his reputation. Which only leaves the original Dirty Politics brigade and the darker, even more evil side of the National Party.

    Nobody could deny that these people have connections, but you'd surely have to have some serious pull to convince customs officers to risk their careers performing an illegal search. Questions need to be asked.

    At least one thing is almost certain. When Simon Bridges comes out with an inevitable denial, he'll somehow manage to implicate himself and his party in this scandal too. He's clever like that.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Dirty Politics, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    The “more than 2000 unauthorised attempts” to access information from Treasury’s servers could easily refer to a single entry which attempted to access or download more than 2,000 documents. It’s sounding increasingly likely that access was via login, whether compromised or through someone on the inside.

    No matter – as long as the access was unauthorised, that’s a crime. A responsible party leader in receipt of stolen information might have reported the hack to either Police or the security services, ideally both. But Bridges didn’t.

    This morning he stated unequivocally that “there was no hack.” He knows this how?

    Bridges used the phrase “witch hunt” which has some unfortunate connotations in these times. A little nod to the loony right, perhaps?

    And he accused Grant Robertson of lying. Presuming Bridges’ standup this morning took place in the parliamentary lobby, does that count as “outside the house” in terms of privilege?

    You have to hand it to Simon Bridges. Ever since he took over as leader, he’s managed to turn every little Nat Party ballsup into a much, much bigger ballsup.

    Long may his doomed reign continue.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1382 posts Report Reply

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