Stanton Glantz, PhD's blog

Moving the discussion of possible marijuana legalization from a business frame to a public health frame

On July 23, 2015, I posted my first comment on Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom’s Blue Ribbon Commission (BRC) on Marijuana Policy releasing its report “Pathways Report: Policy Options for Regulating Marijuana in California,” (link) with primarily positive critiques. Read more »

California Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy report released: Mostly good advice on how to proceed

On July 21, 2015 Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy released its report “Pathways Report: Policy Options for Regulating Marijuana in California,” which provides broad policy recommendations on legalizing marijuana in California. The report recognizes the potential problems of a wealthy profit-motivated marijuana industry and the potential damage to public health.
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Health advocates need to put heat on California "GO" Committee to rescue tobacco control legislation

For years (decades?) the Assembly Government Organization Committee (GO) is where the Assembly Speaker sends tobacco control legislation to die.
It served this function recently when it killed two bills that had passed the Senate, one to include e-cigarettes in California’s clean indoor air law and youth access law and another to raise the age of purchase of tobacco to 21.
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California Tobacco Oversight Committee weighs in on marijuana initiative; Other health groups should follow

As part of the process of developing an initiative to legalize recreational marijuana use in California, the Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom  and the ACLU and have created the Blue Ribbon Commission on Marijuana Policy “to facilitate a comprehensive understanding of various policy questions related to the possibility of legalizing, taxing and regulating marijuana for adults in California.  The Commission has held several public meetings and will be preparing briefing papers on a range of issues.
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Comcast falls off the wagon and releases two PG-13 smoking movies

Since June 30, Comcast released two PG-13 films with smoking: Self/less and Terminator Genesys. This reduces the number of MPAA-member companies with 100% smokefree records for their 2015 youth-rated films from four to three: Disney, Time Warner and Viacom.
It is yet another example of why we need the R rating to protect kids.
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Why the Touchstone loophole in Disney's new movie smoking policy is important

The one Disney film label unnamed in Disney’s policy update is Touchstone, which it uses to release PG-13 films from DreamWorks under a seven-year distribution agreement. Along with that agreement, Disney also maintains a $250 million loan facility for DreamWorks. In effect, then, Disney and DreamWorks enjoy a deal structure very common among the major studios: the distributor-studio finances, markets and distributes a film made by a second-party producer.
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Republicans move to block limited FDA action on e-cigs for more years: Will Obama fight them?

Although 15 months ago FDA released its proposed “deeming rule” that would give FDA authority to regulate e-cigarettes and other harmful tobacco products, the final rule has still not been issued, and these unregulated nicotine products remain on the market to addict kids and other new users, and to keep current and dual users addicted.  
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Four major studios smokefree so far in 2015 — Fox, Sony, indies lag

Kid-rated movies from four major studios — Disney, Paramount, Universal, and Warner Bros.  — were 100 percent smokefree in the first half of 2015, a record number of companies.
Smoking was down, but not out, at the two other MPAA member studios, Fox and Sony.
Overall, 28 percent of G, PG and PG-13 films featured tobacco imagery January through June, 2015, compared to 38 percent in the same period the year before. The average number of tobacco incidents in youth-rated films dropped from 13 to 5. Read more »

Direct evidence that e-cig TV ads are recruiting kids to nicotine addiction

Mattlhew Farrelly and colleagues at RTI just published an excellent experimental study demonstrating that e-cigarette TV ads being run by blu, NJOY, and 21st Century e-cigarette companies move youth who have never used e-cigarettes toward taking them up.  Here is the abstract of their paper, "A Randomized Trial of the Effect of E-cigarette TV Advertisements on Intentions to Use E-cigarettes," in American Journal of Preventive Medicine.  Read more »

Disney updates movie smoking policy, but leaves back door open

On June 29, 2015, The Walt Disney Company released its updated policy on smoking in youth-rated movies, promised by CEO Robert Iger at the company’s annual meeting. 
At that March 12 meeting, a shareholder asked Mr. Iger if Disney would “commit to an iron-clad policy that your PG-13 and youth-rated movies never show smoking.” Mr. Iger responded:
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