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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Fascinating American Snus Theory from Comments

Some of the most interesting items I discuss and learn from readers is by email and in my article comments. Many people post comments to older posts which is why I have comment moderation enabled: I want to make sure I read every one and respond whenever possible.

One of our group of friends here posts under the name "Anonymous Tobacco Guy". He is from Europe until recently and his perspective puts an interesting twist on some subjects. On others, we disagree. But he put forth a theory in comments so interesting that I wanted to post it and my reply for everyone to see. Add to Digg DiggIt! Reddit Reddit Stumbleupon Stumble This Google Bookmarks Add to Google Bookmarks Yahoo My Web Add to Yahoo MyWeb Technorati Add to Technorati Faves Slashdot Slashdot it


Aaron said...

My god! It boggles the mind! I also find it amusing that while Camel "snus" encouraged me to discover the "real deal"....I will never use it again, as I've found things like Röda Lacket lös and General Onyx portions are my preferred tastes. But did I acquire those tastes? or did those tastes acquire me?

Mr. UnloadingZone said...

Frightening, isn't it? That's why I didn't leave them comments but posted them.

It really does make you think and not only about snus. How many of our other "personal choices" were made for us?

Free will or lemmings; informed consumers or rats following a Pied Piper?

It certainly is humbling to humans as the "dominant species" on the planet and our oft inflated opinion of that position in the universe.

Happy Thanksgiving, Aaron.

Anonymous said...

Yum! Can I have some modified corn starch with my snus?
Even better if we could have some MSG too!
The govt. take in Britain is too tax tobacco, alcohol and gas more, every single year. Pretty much, if you are a user of any of those products, you can't do without. The flip side is increased revenue and lowering of consumption. The lowered consumption is good, especially as the majority of health defects caused by drinking and tobacco are treated on the national health service, and lower gas consumption is a reduction in pollutants into the environment.
We know camel and malboro are crap, but when has that ever stopped the average American consumer from lapping it up? How else do you think Britney and hanna montana get where they are? Keep it simple, dumb it down - you have to if you're targetting the masses. Are the US snus manufacturers to blame? No - they're producing a specific for profit maximising demographic. Your average American isn't going to sit and discuss the relative merits of pasturisation, or the complexities of bergamot.

Mr. UnloadingZone said...

Hi Anonymous!

Thanks for taking the time to comment! I agree with you to a point.

All my snus posts since December 5th 2008 are now on One of them talks about the sugar content in cigarettes and now American snus.

As to Americans discussing the relative merits of pasteurisation, or the complexities of bergamot; when I smoked cigarettes I registered at RJRT's website, but just for free coupons. That's because I knew cigarettes were harmful, had made a lifestyle choice, and thought that was enough.

I was a nicotine addicted smoker, but I wouldn't waste the time searching for new studies, information, or a forum to discuss cigarettes. I thought I knew everything about them.

Then we found out Light cigarettes were no better for you than regular filtered cigarettes, that up to 18% of cigarettes consisted of sugar to induce a glucose high, and about nicotine manipulation.

Snus is a big unknown to American Smokers, so while it might not become a passion, they certainly will research it.

What Americans DON'T know is that Marlboro and Camel are, as you put it, crap.

I never heard of snus 2 years ago and like everyone else here, thought PM and RJRT invented it in 2006. I only discovered Swedish Snus by accident when searching on-line for a cheaper price on Camel SNUS.

For me it became a passion and if you look at the large number of cigar and pipe clubs, websites, forums, etc, you'd be surprised at how many Americans will participate.

As to majority? As word gets out about American Snus, they will research (we love the Internet over here. Al Gore invented it, you know.). We've been taught to be educated consumers now....not wise consumers; just educated.

Your contention that taxation is "good" is not correct at all.

If all the facts are on the table, then educated consumers have the right of not being punitively taxed for using legal substances including tobacco, alcohol, and gasoline.

Tobacco products, especially cigarettes, which have no redeeming characteristics; if they're that harmful, they should have been banned decades ago just like DDT and asbestos.

Why didn't my Nanny Government protect me instead of taking my money?

Alcohol.... we tried banning that here once and it didn't work.

Gasoline: don't raise the taxes to control consumption; improve the product so it's not harmful to the environment and let people drive as much as they like.

When people can't afford to drive, they can't afford to patronize restaurants, stores, and other non-essential places which kills businesses and eliminates them as a source of "revenue".

Where did all these hybrid and electric cars suddenly come from? I'm supposed to believe the technology didn't exist 5 years ago? Ten years ago?

Of course it did. The auto manufacturers were too busy maximizing profits for a specific demographic than to act responsibly.

The climate changed when gasoline broke $110 a barrel and kept climbing. Suddenly electric and hybrid cars were where the profit was.

They stopped (too late) making cars and SUV's and suddenly Green cars were available.

Now that oil is below $40/barrel, suddenly they're making trucks and SUV's maximize profits.

Why are people buying the trucks and SUV's? Because they like them and human beings are imperfect.

Where was my Nanny Government back then? Why weren't they spending my tax dollars on alternative fuel research instead of wasting it on bridges to nowhere and studying insects?

Taxes were never intended to; and should not be used as a tool of any government to control the behavior of it's citizens.

For the same reason, don't use the word "revenue" as well as "invest" when talking about taxes.

The Government is not a business and it is not for-profit. The Government doesn't produce anything. It involuntarily takes money away from the people and companies that did earn it and uses it well beyond the mandates our government, and believe yours, are based on.

As to blame? Plenty to go around on both sides but you can't say the corporations in any of these industries are blameless. For example, go visit and tell me the tobacco companies are blameless. There are plenty more examples in all three of the industries you named.

In "producing a specific, for profit maximising demographic", does that make it OK even if the product is harmful or hurts the environment?

In the holy name of Maximizing Profits, is it OK to distort, bend, obscure, and intentionally deceive their intended demographic?

Why didn't the Government use our tax money to regulate and ban such unsafe products? Greed.

The $250BB Tobacco Settlement in the US plus a cigarette tax costing consumers up to 80% of a pack of cigarettes is a lot of "revenue".

Why would the EU ban Swedish Snus, which is harmless and unnoticeable to 3rd parties and only "regulate" and decry cigarettes?

Why can you still smoke cigarettes while Swedish snus is banned? Because it's easy and scores political points.

BTW, at least in Swedish snus, there is no modified corn starch. That's another of the old wives tales along with broken glass in snus that the EU hysterically reacted to in 1992/93.

As to American Snus? For all I know, the primary ingredient is dirt and sugar. They don't tell us and my Nanny Government doesn't make them.

For all I know, they could consist of cornstarch and glass....or could add 10 years to my life: I have no clue.

What are my tax dollars being used for again?

Mr. Unloadingzone.
22 Jan 2008

Mrs. Unloadingzone

Mrs. Unloadingzone
"The Girl of my Dreams"