If you ever need to know the power of the tobacco lobby in the United States, just look at cigarette packaging in other countries. Over half of the display in Andorra screams: “Smoking kills” or “Smokers Die Younger.” No mincing words with those warnings…

…yet they still garner a prominent display in the window and the products are sold worldwide, a testament to the power of money and the addictive properties of smoking.

I just read a novel* in which the main character is ravaged by addiction to oxycodone. There were warnings on those bottles, too, but it did not matter.

The key with addictive products — cigarettes, drugs, social media — is not to start. Not to start making them, selling them, or using them. A written caution is no more effective than a speed limit sign.

*Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver. Highly recommend.

See warnings on cigarette packages in the display in Andorra. Much more prominent than in the U.S.

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