First hand, second hand and third hand smoke, tobacco enemas and medicinal use of smoke, plus all the usual detrimental health effects of tobacco, not the least of which is giant exploding cigarettes in Thailand.

Music: “Smoke, Smoke, Smoke” Tex Williams



Destroyed in Seconds – Exploding Cigarette




Thank You For Smoking
Toren: 7/10
Kevin: 8/10
Joe: 8/10

Kevin: 7/10

The Insider
Toren: 8/10
Kevin: 6/10
Joe: 7/10

Toren: 6/10
Kevin: 6/10
Joe: 6/10

27 Responses

  1. Did you guys talk about snuff at all? I don’t recall hearing it mentioned. Snuff is ground up tobacco that was commonly used in Europe ye olde times. That’s right you can also snort tobacco up your nose. Not really a surprise given the history of other recreational drugs.

    You mentioned the King’s Speech in the pop culture section. There is a scene in the movie where ‘Berty’ tells ‘Lionel’ that his doctor prescribed cigarettes to relax his throat and help with his speech problem. I thought I’d mention it because it supports the crazy olde timey medicine that thought tobacco was good and good for you.

    On a related note, The Insider never actually won any Academy Awards. In fact, Russell Crowe probably should have won Best Actor that year (instead of Kevin Spacey for American Beauty). Instead he got his payback the next year for Gladiator denying better performances the award.

    1. We moved to a new (and better) server to help deal with some problems we had. The podcast feed iTunes uses appears to be working correctly so my guess is it’s a DNS propagation problem that should go away soon.

  2. Interesting that you missed the polonium-210 content of cigarettes, callback to the radiation episode and all, which is one of the things that keeps me from starting smoking again.

  3. There seemed to be some confusion between methadone and methamphetamine. People who are “meth heads” are generally addicted to methamphetamine, while methadone is a synthetic opioid heroin addicts are given to get them off heroin.

    Also, TOMACCO! You guys don’t bring up the Simpsons very often.

    1. I actually mentioned an episode of the Simpsons (the one where Bart holds a truckload of Laramees for Fat Tony) but we cut it because nothing interesting was said about it.

  4. Regarding why the Icelanders would retain a “by prescription” out for doctors, things that are otherwise really, really bad can sometimes be needed as prescriptions.

    A person I know that’s bi-polar is prescribed a variety of drugs that make other doctors blanch, including sizeable amounts of amphetamine. For normal people, we’d probably end up dead, but for her it levels her out, and it’s only available to her doctor because it’s got a similar loophole.

    Now, what tobacco could provide like that, I have no idea….

  5. How the hell was a school child permitted to chew/suck/whatever tobacco in class?! A) Parents, WTFSM?! B) Teachers, WTFSM?! And he had to have a cup with him to spit it out during class. Eww!

    Or is it just me?

    Chewing tobacco doesn’t seem to be particularly prevalent in Australia, so I find it a pretty foreign concept.

    The federal government here is bringing in plain packaging laws, and we’ve had graphic warnings on packs for at least 5 years and probably 10. The biggest pushback ads regarding the plain packaging are by an organisation that calls itself the “Retailers Association” or something, claiming that plain packaging will reduce sales which will hurt Old Bob’s Service Station. It’s preposterous, IMHO. People will buy something else, and almost all service stations in Australia are run by one of a few multi-nationals anyway (AFAIK), and I’m sure they’ll make up the costs via other avenues.

    In any case you’ve enthused me to go look up “Thank you for smoking” again. Thanks. 🙂

  6. Minor correction – “meth” usually refers to “methamphetamines”, not “methadone”

  7. You have to put “The enema of my enemy is my friend” on a caustic soda podcast shirt.

  8. So, who do I believe when it comes to second hand smoke? Penn and Teller think its bullshit. Joe thinks its Satan incarnate. I personally think is tobacco and not marijuana so its pointless. Was it just me or did Joe come across as anything but skeptical on this episode? I was hoping for a bit more balanced discussion on both the second hand and third hand smoking. I’m pretty convinced that second hand smoke is bad, but third hand? I’m very skeptical that there is anything to be grossly concerned over

    I’m not much of a libertarian, and I think these guys let their political agenda influence their science, but its worth a listen anyway

    1. I seem to recall Penn saying that they had a lot of bad information in their second hand smoke episode. They’re by no means flawless, I noticed they approached only certain angles in their recycling episode as well.

  9. I just started listening to your show (thanks to Unspeakable!) and I might be commenting on past episodes a lot. I’d like to point out to Kevin in this episode, that killing people really is poor population control. Studies show that when life expectancy (and childhood deaths) goes up, birth rates go down. It’s as if people want to be sure that at least some of their children live.

  10. I just want to mention the snake venom and cyanide being natural as being a really great point to mention. I always use uranium as my example 🙂

  11. One of my all time favorite scenes from Frasier is Bebe Glazer (Harriet Sansom Harris) answering the question “what’s so wonderful about smoking”
    I have no idea how to embed it but here it is on You Tube

  12. How far back will you guys go for a follow up? I started liatening to your podcast from the beginning and have been binge listening at a rate of 7 or 8 per day. Just wondering if the term ” blowing smoke up your ass” has any origins with tobacco smoke enemas.