Wednesday, 17 June 2020

Corrupted tobacco economists network, Part 33: Robert D. Tollison writes more tobacco books

Overview of previous posts here

Robert D. Tollison writes pro-tobaccco books, part III

Smoking and the state (1988)

The executive summary for this book was written by the Public Relations firm Ogilvy and Mather, but the Tobacco Institute did not like their work and rewrote the piece

The book had a clear purpose

Promoting smoking and the state

PR-firm Ogilvy and Mather designed the campaign to promote Tollison's and Wagner's book Smoking and the State: Social costs, rent seeking, and public policy

Tollison and Wagner agreed on the program presented by Ogilvy and Mather

The tobacco industry always tried to hide that it was lobbying with the aid of 'independent' academics. The scientists in the ‘Social Cost’ category usually were strictly separated from the ‘truth squads’ and the witnesses in these programs never appeared at the same place at the same time. This way, the industry wanted to create the illusion that different categories of scientists in non-related fields opposed the government's tobacco-regulations.

Reality was different: both the ‘tax’ and ‘truth squad’ academics took part in media tours set up by the industry. Ogilvy and Mather organized both tours, in one controlled operation and often mentioned both media-tours in one and the same memorandum, e.g. the memorandum written February 15, 1989

Similar notes were written on (small selection): February 1, 1989, on April 11, 1989, on August 17, 1989, etc.

There's one exception to this rule of separating thruth squad and the economists: when the American Medical Association held a meeting and the industry only became aware of this conference one month in advance. Probably because of a time constraint Tollison and David Weeks were touring at the same place and time.

Just as with legislative testimony, the Tobacco Institute did follow up how the scientists coped with their lobbying:

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