Ok, this is a news story that gets a little personal with me and hits the “That just ain’t right” button … with a sledgehammer.

First, I saw this on GMA this morning. I didn’t see the story, but read this in the crawl at the bottom of the screen. A headline and brief teaser about reports showing more nicotine in cigarettes. It said that the levels have been increasing over the last six years and most brands having ten percent more nicotine than six years ago.

Later, when I had time, I went looking for the story. I found the GMA story on an ABCnews RSS feed but I was amazed to find that there was little to no mention of it anywhere else at all. I found very little mention of it on other news media other than copies of the AP story that ABC has on their site and mentioned on GMA.

I know why the tobacco companies are doing this. It’s to stay in business. By increasing the amount of nicotine it becomes easier to get addicted to the things and harder to break that addiction and get free of them. I think it’s a low, underhanded trick that should get somebody hauled in front of a judge or Senate Investigation to explain just what they think they’re getting away with and exactly who is responsible for it.

What I don’t know is why this story didn’t get more coverage than it did. It should have been all over the place, yet it’s practically dead on the vine. Perhaps it might have something to do with the millions of dollars in ‘feel good about the tobacco companies promoting quit smoking campaigns’ spending that they’re doing? Obviously I don’t know, but I can guess. Tobacco companies have a LOT of money and that kind of money can buy lots of things… at least until some person or persons starts making enough noise about it to get some wide spread attention.

I was a smoker for a lot of years until I finally got free of it. Now I see ’em pulling this stunt to try to get more smokers and keep the ones they have by increasing the ingredient that causes the addiction in the first place and it leaves me ready to kick the marlboro man into last week.

Again I wonder… Why is this not being talked about more????

[taps mic] Hello? . . . Is this thing on?


U.S. Report: More Nicotine in Cigarettes
Nicotine Levels in Cigarettes Increasing Steadily Over Last 6 Years
By STEVE LeBLANC
The Associated PressBOSTON – The level of nicotine found in U.S. cigarettes has risen about 10 percent in the past six years, making it harder to quit and easier to get hooked, according to a new report released Tuesday by the Massachusetts Department of Health.

The study shows a steady climb in the amount of nicotine delivered to the lungs of smokers regardless of brand, with overall nicotine yields increasing by about 10 percent.

Massachusetts is one of three U.S. states to require tobacco companies to submit information about nicotine and the only state with data going back to 1998.

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