Yesterday was World No-Tobacco Day and it seems that the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare missed an opportunity to release their latest National Drug Strategy Household Survey data showing the glorious success of their policies to rid Australia of tobacco and other harmful drugs. Instead the data was pre-released today.
It’s not like the Nanny State to miss an opportunity like that. Wonder what they didn’t want the world to know yesterday?
12.2% of people aged 14 or over were daily smokers in 2016. While smoking rates have been on a long-term downward trend, for the first time in over two decades, the daily smoking rate did not significantly decline over the most recent 3 year period (2013 to 2016).
Yes – the prevalence of smoking in Australia “fell” from 12.8% in 2013 – the first full year of plain packaging – to 12.2% in 2016. How is that long-term trend looking?
Tobacco control policies over the last (almost) three decades have had no impact on the long-term downward trend in tobacco consumption. Given the population increase since 2013, I suspect more people were smoking in 2016 than in 2013. I wonder if they were smoking legal cigarettes? Probably not.
In the meantime use of illicit drugs has increased from 15% to 15.6%.
Update: Chris Snowdon here.
If the ‘public health’ industry was even slightly evidence-based, Australia would have legalised vaping and Britain would have never bothered with plain packaging. But is not evidence-based. It is a cult, and the chief turnip on the turnip farm has already come up with his pathetic excuses, which amount to ‘give us more money’…
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, tobacco control is not a results-driven business.