The Return of King Butts
So you thought the age of King Butts was over? Especially after that $246 billion deal the states made with the tobacco companies in 1998, ostensibly to fund anti-smoking campaigns. But the states took the money and ran the other way. Few bothered spending significant sums on anti-smoking programs, except California, which (before the Terminator) devised and implemented innovative programs that had measurable effect in reducing teen smoking.
The last weapon the federal government had was a pending law suit filed during the Clinton administration charging the big Butts with promoting teen smoking, and seeking damages. But with their infinite capacity for craven cowardice, the Bushers reduced the damages they were seeking from $130 billion to $10 billion.
Why? The operative figure seems to be $54 million, which is what the Big Butt companies have spread around in campaign contributions since 1990. Even the judge in the case smells a rat, as do several members of Congress. But for now King Butts is back, big time! Any industry that can kill some 400,000 people a year can't possibly be more important to the Bushies as renewing the Patriot Act, which is supposed to protect us from terrorists, at least the unincorporated kind.
Last-minute retreat leaves anti-smoking plan in ashes - Yahoo! News
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