The Tobacco Institute's Legacy of Spin

Big Tobacco, in the form of the Tobacco Institute and The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition, wrote the book on manipulative PR tactics. Go no further than this 1982 news interview with a Tobacco Institute VP.

Sound familiar? Same talking points, bigger issue. We have acquired more than 20 hours of old Tobacco Institute video, so watch for more clips over the next few weeks.


This type of presentation is excellent, as it gives a sense of reality to our assertion that the same methods used by big tobacco are being used by big oil. It would also be interesting to see a video overlay of smoking cancer deniers with our current crop of climate deniers. This will help make their methods transparent, and thus ineffective, kind of like pulling back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz (except that these guys are malevolent).

I would also like to see more clips of denialists saying ridiculous things; examples might include saying that the world isn’t actually warming, or that glaciers are actually increasing. We need to make it clear how the denialists morph what they say to the level of knowledge of their audience. When the level of knowledge of an audience increases, showing the denialists’ previous comments makes them look absurd. This makes it more difficult for them to hide behind their current cloak of solar variability and cosmic rays.

I hope lots of people out their are keeping good quality video records of the denialists comments. This way, we should be able to use their own words against them in the future.