Sunday, June 18, 2017

T&T Tobacco Companies Blantantly Ignore Tobacco Laws

Did You Know That Single Cigarette Should Only Be Sold In Wrappers Labeled:


In 2009, the Trinidad and Tobago Government passed the Tobacco Control Act of 2009, and in 2013 additional Regulations strengthened the Act.

Ostensibly the regulations were added because a number of studies highlighted per capita rate of  Non-communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Trinidad and Tobago.

Treatment of NCDs has a direct cost investment in the maintenance of health and life. The cost of this destructive habit does not end with the high cost of cigarettes.  Quiting smoking can reduce incidence of potential ailments like heart attack, cancer, strokes.

The purpose of the act was to accomplish the following:
1. Protect citizens from exposure to tobacco smoke,
2. Prevent smoking by young people,
3. To restrict promotional activities by tobacco manufacturers,
4. Improve public awareness of the dangers of tobacco use, and
5. Ensure that consumers are provided with enough information to make more informed decisions on using tobacco products

Now how is that working for us?

1. Protecting Citizens from Exposure to Tobacco Smoke 

If you listened to the news reports and the printed media, you would think that this is all the bill was only about protecting people from second hand smoke.

You may remember, the first few days after the bill was passed, a man was arrested for smoking in a bar.

His case became national news.  That was the last time anyone smoked in a bar. Go ahead Laugh out loud.

Main street media focused on this this regulation exclusively.

For example, here is a Newsday article published when the Act was proclaimed.  .

The Trinidad Guardian article outlined the purpose of the Act but it too focused on this part of the regulation, maybe because the provisions would affect the general population. They did not do much better; here is what they had to report.

These articles engaged Trinbagonians in a conversation about the issues related to smoking in public.  It gave the Act  smoking, in effect on protecting now smokers form second hand smoke.
T&T Mass media and all the other enforcement agencies blatantly ignored the rest of the bill.  It was as if the Act only affected the common citizen; there was more.

2. Prevent smoking by young people:

The truth is, and to its credit, the agency responsible for advertising has been sharing the dangers of smoking with the use of the mass media.  As we, all know these ads, even if they are helpful, cannot work alone.

They are not working.  Here is the result of a survey done with youth as young as 12 years old.  If you observe the result, you will see that smoking starts at the young age of 12 and tapers off, as the child gets older, leaving quite a few tobacco addicted children.

According to an article written in 2014, 23 percent of youth in Trinidad and Tobago between the ages of 15 to 24 were smokers.  Read the article here 

The unrestricted access to individual cigarettes is one of the primary reasons for this trend.  The lawmakers recognized this and instead of banning the sale of individual cigarettes, they opted to use the following as part of the restriction.

“Where a cigarette is intended to be sold individually, each cigarette shall be wrapped and the message "SMOKING IS DANGEROUS" shall be displayed conspicuously on the wrapper”.

Have you ever seen such a wrapper?

3. To Restrict Promotional Activities by Tobacco Companies 

Now here is where it gets interesting.  According to the Act, tobacco companies operating in T&T must to specifics stipulations with respect to promoting and packaging cigarettes.

These include the labeling and a schedule of photos they are required to post on the cartoons and cases.

It would appear that the authors of the Act gave the Tobacco companies wide leeway when it specified that these images only appear on cartons and cases.

The Act specifically states that anti-smoking images should not be placed on individual packs.

Specific images that MUST be placed on cartoons and cases can be viewed on this pdf document; you will have to scroll to the bottom of the page. 

Cartons and cases are usually only seen by distributors NOT the majority of consumers.

The big question is have you ever seen these pictures on a carton?

Even with the advantage of not having to place the images on packs, the Tobacco companies have failed to comply with this aspect of the law.

Can you blame them; they have been not doing it for years. In addition, it would increase their cost even if it does nothing to reduce smoking in this country.

The enforcement agencies ignore these infractions.

4. Improve Public Awareness: 

Let us face it, except for mass media ads, the only time that the public awareness was a few days after the passage of the Act in January 2013.  The real question behind this regulation is; who pays for this awareness?  Who pays for the mass media ads?

Usually funds can be generated from the enforcement of the law, from fines and penalties.   It would appear that that because the law is not being enforced or only enforced on the general population.

What is odd here is that we know these ads do not work.

If you think they work, look at this Trinidad & Tobago 2011 (Ages 13-15) Global Youth Tobacco Survey

The entire survey results are full of interesting information.  Each section is interesting; the numbers tell its own story.  For the purpose of the point here, is what it said about the effect of advertising:
Media and Advertising
75.8% saw anti-smoking media messages, in the past 30 days
57.3% saw pro-cigarette ads on billboards or TV, in the past 30 days
49.0% saw pro-cigarette ads in newspapers or magazines, in the past 30 days
10.2% have an object with a cigarette brand logo
10.0% were offered free cigarettes by a tobacco company representative
They are getting the mass media messages but smoking among youth is increasing.

You can view the entire results of the Survey Here. 

Finally, the last intention of the Act was to:

 Ensure that consumers are provided with enough information to make more informed decisions on using tobacco products

This I leave to you, do you think that this is happening?

Do you think that if the tobacco companies complied with the law smoking will be reduced?

What should the Ministry of Health do about this?  Is it their responsibility?

What can you do?

Monday, May 15, 2017

Build A Free Website

Turn Your Passion Into A Thriving Business

Satisfy your desire to go into business yourself, it will take some work, it will not be instiant, the more you know the better prepared you will get.

Start by building your free website and join a vibrant active business community.

Nothing will change for you in two weeks or a year if you don't do something now.

Start with your own website and open up a world of affiliate infcome.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

The Fast Free Way Build Your List Online

This Is All Absolutely True

The quickest way to get everyone's attention is to give something away for free.

The sad part is when you give something away for free, everyone wants to get
in on it, even if they end up throwing it away years from now.

The truth is that this is not for you if you do not have a list online, and you don't
think you will ever need one.  Pass on this free offer.

But if you have a list of subscribers or you want to grow a list, this is definitely for you.

Click the image below.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sorry Trinidad Express, We Need Real News

Why Mama I Switching To The Trinidad Guardian

"Tonz, did you get my newspaper?".

My mother called out to me as she usually do every morning. She is a new junkie, an addict to news; newspaper. TV and radio.  Recently, she figured out how to get more news on her smart phone.

In my humble opinion, citizens of Trinidad and Tobago, along with the rest of the world were all totally blown away when Donald Trump won the elections in the US.

We in the Caribbean, loved Obama and anything he say we should do, we do.  If he ran in the Caribbean he would lose.

Since then, the Trinidad Express has been milking the elections. Almost like creating news from speculations. The Donald said that as soon as he took office he will be deporting over 11 million illegal aliens.

The Express kept busting headlines, one after the other, almost as if they want to make the populace jittery about what Trump will do when he takes office in January.

Here's the headline story for yesterday Trump To Deport 3 Million with the implication that we in Trinidad and Tobago will be faced with receiving an overwhelming number of deportee.

Maybe the circulation increased yesterday because today there is a new headline. the Express Editor in Chief is on a roll.

Today's head line: "No Room For Deportees" with a sub headline that PM Rowley saying that all citizens has to be accepted.  Like they expected him to say, no these deportees are no longer welcomed in T&T.

But here is the real story behind the head line, talk about scaring people: Deportees Already Coming
Think about it, a deportee just decides that since Trump won he got on a plane and is coming home. What nonsense. After reading that you will understand.

The story implies that people who are in the US illegally, not deportee, maybe coming home now.  (Remember it's 3 million of them)

Why would the Express do this?

Even today's editorial is all about Trump On The Backs of Angry Voters

Need to report relevant news? Need to increase circulation? Sincerely believing that what is happen in the US now must be important to T&T citizens?  Whatever the intention the affect is that this topic becomes the topic of the day.

Wrong direction but let's go for the ride.

Imagine if you are illegal in the US and you are in touch with home, you would be trembling, feeling really apprehensive.

But people here are thinking, we have enough problems, we don't need more criminal deportees here.  Asking PM Rowley answers about whether he would accept deportees is another attempt to create news from nothing. .

We need answers on:

  • Life Sport and the over $400 million dollars?
  • On the 8 HDC officials indicted now at the DPP for prosecution?
  • What is happening with the lands sold and leased in Chargaramas?
  • Dana Seethahal assassination or hit whichever you prefer, even
  • The price of oil and what we are doing to diversify the economy

This could go on for awhile, but we will stop there....

We are not going to see 3 million deportees here.  Far from it. In addition, the National Security Minister Dillion can make inquiries to the US now and find out the number of Trinis now facing deportation.

Instead the Express is attempting to scare the citizens of T&T with non news.

Yes there must be preparations made, and yes  Mr. Wayne Chance should be included in the preparations.  But please, don't use the good he has been doing to sensationalize the news.

Tell us what we want to hear about, not make up stories with no real bases. What Donald Trump says does not constitute a national disaster, don't sensationalize prospective possibilities to sell newspapers; this is news, things that happened already, not fortune telling.

Today even my mother says she is fed up with the Express and the news they are reporting.  Last  Sunday and Monday she read the Guardian and felt the news was more relevant.  She is seriously thinking about switching to the Guardian for her daily paper.

People want news real news, so many people feel that hearing the news keeps them in touch alive. But when the media fabricates news to increase circulation, Houston has a problem.

Here is an example of the news that should be news but is buried on page 9 if today's Trinidad Express.  1000 New Diabetic Cases Annually in T&T  Doctors Say we are "2 times the global average".  No link because it was trumped by politics, more important how many deportees to expect,

To learn more about the problem we are having with diabetes here  read the Trinidad Newsday article "11 Among Top Countries With Diabetes"

The media should hold themselves responsible to report real news, not what they think will happen,  Leave that to the priest and pastors in the land.

Vote for real news. .


Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Is It Because We Don't Understand China?

Saturday, August 6, 2016

3rd World War - America vs China

Alarmist or Real Possibility?

When you are aware of the possibilities there are no surprises.

What affect would a war between America and China have on the Caribbean?

The affects would be very adverse to every Caribbean island from Cuba to Trinidad and Tobago.

Remember we are all hosts and owe significant sums to the Chinese.  Read a past post "Is China Colonizing The Caribbean?"

We have allowed the Chinese to become entrenched in every community.

Their modus operandi for smooth almost invisible infiltration are restaurants, grocery stores.

Lately, in Trinidad, you can't swing a dead dog without hitting a Chinese restaurant; they are sprouting up everywhere faster than tomatoes.

That is where it started, in the last few years, the have gone into the grocery food business. Large supermarkets have also began to spout up everywhere.

The real question that most of us are not asking is.

How could a Chinese immigrant who cannot even speak English, come to Trinidad and open a super duper grocery store?

Let's assume you come here with enough funds to open a grocery store as large as the stores that have been opening up in all the major commercial areas of Trinidad and Tobago.

You live in China, you have enough funds to open a grocery store in a tiny twin island like Trinidad and Tobago.  A place where, the people are accepting and really will not pay attention to the fact that you are control the very thing that they need to stay alive; food. .

Food is important, but even more important is money.  How could the Chines get a much free money from a country?  Have them give it to you with the hope that you will give them more than they gave you.

In other words, gambling.  It is a sure way to get money without having to work for it.  Did you notice how many Chinese run casinos are popping up in Trinidad?

People will do anything for money,  Gambling is the perfect money trap.  The Chinese know this.

Do you?

What would you do if suddenly you could not get food or money?

Who has and controlling both in Trinidad and the Caribbean?

View this video and you decide.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

In Jail Since Big Bird Was a Humming Birdl, Without A Trial

3 Trending Items In Trinidad & Tobago March 4th 2016

1. Express Headline: I enjoyed the freedom, I eh touch no gun, knife, ice-pick *

An Unjust Justice System: What will it take before the people in power realize that something has to be done with the judicial system in Trinidad and Tobago.  The entire judiciary system is a remnant of colonialism.  Old laws, old systems that have not kept up with the changing times.  

We just keep doing what we were told is the right thing to do.  How could anyone justify someone waiting 12 years for a trial.  Guilty until proven innocent, this could be you or a family member. When you this is put in the light of the incredible efficiency of our law enforcement agencies, something has to be done. . 

This is just one case, when people are  put in a position where they feel their backs are against a wall there is nothing else to do but do what any reasonable human being would do.  

In the meanwhile we have a judiciary that is allotted $10.1 million for travel, they use $9.5 million they say to keep abreast of advances in the international sphere.  .

According to one comment, are we getting value for our money?

The new administration should focus on this instead of bringing new legislation to increase the fines that penalize people for not keeping there property clear of mosquito hazards. 

Yes, that is important but not nearly as important as reforming the criminal justice system in this country.  Let's get our priorities rights. 

2. Express Headline:  World figures deny wrongdoing *

Th Panama Papers; Of course we there.  There is not one incident in the world that we, that is a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago is not present.  Remember the last incident in Paris, we were there, in Georgia Russia, we where there.  A citizen of TnT has been identified as being one of the "millionaires" who is hiding money in offshore accounts. According to the Daily Express:

"Express investigative journalist Camini Marajh reported exclusively yesterday that business consultant Ken Emrith who was once associated with the United National Congress (UNC) used a Panamanian Shell Corporation to channel millions of US dollars to offshore bank accounts including a US$1 million consultancy fee from a convicted money launderer connected to the Petrobras bribery scandal in Brazil". 

We wait with batted breath on more to surface. 

Is it a 2 Million Dollar Benz, turned into a 1 million dollar Benz after PM Rowley set the record right. Everyone is up in arms about this purchase.  He called the price at $970,000 and said he was told it was a good deal. Let's see what kind of a deal it was.

The newspaper reported that it was the S series, not mentioning which of the "S" but a check online revealed that the price of the most expensive 2016 Benz S600 puts the price at $376,000 USD.  That translates at $6.51 TTD per USD to a grand figure of  2,447,760.  

Maybe this is where the two million dollar figure came about. The S600 is the most expensive of the Benz S series so we could assume it was not a new S600 maybe an S500,  If we work backwards using the figure reported in the paper of $970,000 TTD ot $149,000 USD. 

That, according to what the PM was told, is a GREAT DEAL

Stop fussing, you take the donkey cart. 

T&T Tobacco Companies Blantantly Ignore Tobacco Laws

Did You Know That Single Cigarette Should Only Be Sold In Wrappers Labeled: "SMOKING IS DANGEROUS TO YOUR HEALTH" In...