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June 24, 2009

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Ray Girvan

Grimly fascinating social history... You might be interested in another bit of the cigarette story I ran into recently: see "The writer, the cancer-merchant, his eccentric wife, and the faux castle" (http://segalbooks.blogspot.com/2009/04/writer-cigarette-pusher-his-eccentric.html), which has a bit about John Morgan Richards, the quack medicine entrepreneur who was also most instrumental in popularising the cigarette in England. Ironically, his Isle of Wight mansion was next door to a chest hospital.

PS Superb site! (and hello from a UK bookshop).

John Ptak

Thanks so much for this--I'll check it out...and also your bookshop!

jasper

Swiss women only got the right to vote in 1971 as a result of a national referendum (66% yes /33% no).


Jeff

An oppressive thing for a friend in the heart surgery business in N.C. is that most of his patients are obese smokers and drinkers at the end of their days for whom surgery (and hundreds of thousands of dollars) is the barest of stopgaps. If most smokers die younger and more quickly, the cost to society might be less than having them live longer on Medicare. I don't know. Just occurred to me. I'm not sure I want to know the answer to that.

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