Schaffer Library of Drug Policy

Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding

History of Tobacco Regulation - Conclusion

US National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse

Table of Contents
I. Marihuana and the Problem of Marihuana
Origins of the Marihuana Problem
The Need for Perspective
Formulating Marihuana Policy
The Report
II. Marihuana Use and Its Effects
The Marihuana User
Profiles of Users
Becoming a Marihuana User
Becoming a Multidrug User
Effects of Marihuana on the User
Effects Related to Pattern Use
Immediate Drug Effects
ShortTerm Effects
Long Term Effects
Very Long Term Effects
III. Social Impact of Marihuana Use
IV. Social Response to Marihuana Use
V. Marihuana and Social Policy
Drugs in a Free Society
A Social Control Policy for Marihuana
Implementing the Discouragement Policy
A Final Comment
Ancillary Recommendations
Legal and Law Enforcement Recommendations
Medical Recommendations
Other Recommendations
Letter of Transmittal
Members and Staff
History of Marihuana Use: Medical and Intoxicant
II. Biological Effects of Marihuana
Botanical and Chemical Considerations
Factors Influencing Psychopharmacological Effect
Acute Effects of Marihuana (Delta 9 THC)
Effects of Short-Term or Subacute Use
Effects of Long-Term Cannabis Use
Investigations of Very Heavy Very Long-Term Cannabis Users
III. Marihuana and Public Safety
Marihuana and Crime
Marihuana and Driving
Marihuana - Public Health and Welfare
Assessment of Perceived Risks
Preventive Public Health Concerns
Marihuana and the Dominant Social Order
The World of Youth
Why Society Feels Threatened
The Changing Social Scene
Problems in Assessing the Effects of Marihuana
Marihuana and Violence
Marihuana and (Non-Violent) Crime
Summary and Conclusions: Marihuana and Crime
Marihuana and Driving
History of Marihuana Legislation
History of Alcohol Prohibition
History of Tobacco Regulation
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National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse

History of Tobacco Regulation*


The big question is how the Federal government plans to proceed. Six tobacco bills are now pending in Congress. One of these bills would give the Federal Trade Commission authority to set maximum permissible limits on tar and nicotine. Another would establish a graduated cigarette tax based on tar content.

The FTC is presently carrying on negotiations with the industry to come up with a "clear and conspicuous" health warning for its print advertising. It is expected that the industry, " which has been working closely with the FTC 'will' take some 'voluntary' labeling action" (Where Cigarette Makers Spend, 1971: 57).

The industry feels the pressure; one member explains: "We are resigned to it. Over-all.... the industry mood is much more relaxed-now that we have this first big year behind us" (Where Cigarette Makers Spend, 1971: 57).

The public is clamoring for government action; a 1970 College Poll'. surveying-youths 18 and older on more than 100 campuses reveals that 96% believe that smoking is dangerous to one's health (College Poll, 1971).

Further, a 1969 study on teenage (13- to 18-yearolds) smoking attitudes, motivation and habits indicates "deep teenage dissatisfaction with cigarette smoking, considerable knowledge of its ill effects, but a very exaggerated estimate of the acceptance of smoking by the adult world" (Lieberman Research, 1969: 1-20). And, a 1970 nationwide survey of teenagers revealed: "72% of non-smokers identified physicians as the one group that could persuade them not to start smoking and 42% of those who smoked said their physician's advice would influence them to stop" (Doctors, 1970: 24).

Critics of the industry claim: "The controversy about smoking and health continues largely because of the energy, time and money spent by the tobacco industry in keeping this controversy alive" (College Poll, 1971).

In September, 1935, Fortune Magazine published a discussion of the medical implications of smoking. It concluded that:

This much can be said: That the possible benefit to be derived from tobacco is always less than the possible harm (Robert, 1949: 256).

Official policy has never accepted this judgment. In recent years, steps have been taken to discourage smoking, although there is little conclusive evidence that consumption patterns are changing. It can be expected that official policy and alterations in individual behavior will both evolve slowly during the coming years. The socioeconomic impact of a sudden change in official policy would be great, a circumstance reflecting the momentum of several centuries of intense commercial activity.


Brooks, J. E. The Mighty Leaf: Tobacco Thru the Centuries, Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1952, 12, 27, 56, 71-72, 88, 93-98, 102, 112-113, 146-147, 165, 167, 215216, 219, 242-243, 245, 258, 271, 274.

"Cigarette Ad Ban Ruled Constitutional by Panel," Washington Post (Washington, D.C.), October 21, 1971. "Cigarette Advertising and the Public Health," Columbia Journal of Law: Social Problems, 6 (1) : 110-114, 1970. "Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act of 1965," New York Times (New York, New York), July 9, 1965. "Cigarette Sales Up Despite Ad Curbs," Washington Post (Washington, D.C.), January 1, 1972,3.

"College Poll Shows Students' Smoking Habits," Tobacco Reporter, June, 1971.

Council of State Goverments. The Book of the States, 1968,196-197,200-208,212-213.

Diehl, H. Tobacco and Your Health, New York: McGrawHill Book Co., 1969, 154-156, 161-162.

"Doctors Could Disuade Youths From Smoking," Pediatric News, 4(2) :24, 1970.

Federal Trade Commission. "FTC Statistical Supplement," December, 1970, 3.

Fritschler, A. T. Smoking and Politics, New York: Appleton-Century-Cross, Inc., 1969, 145.

Gottsegen, J. J. Tobacco-A Study of its Consumption in the United States, New York-Chicago: Pitman Publishing Corp., 1940, 8-10, 28, 87, 147, 153, 155.

Hamilton, A. E. This Smoking World, New York: The Century Co., 1927, 168, 205.

Heimann, R. K. Tobacco and Americans, New York:

McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1960, 22-23, 83-84, 90, 93, 155-156.

Lehman Brothers. About Tobacco, (N.P.), 1955, 39.

Lieberman Research, Inc. "The Teenager Looks at Cigarette Smoking," Report of a Study Conducted for the American Cancer Society, November, 1969, 1-20.

Maxwell, J. C., Jr. "Preliminary Year End Estimate," The Maxwell Report, November, 1971,1-2.

Middleton, A. P. Tobacco Coast, Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 1953, 93-94, 104-107, 114-117, 120-121.

Morison, S. E. The Oxford History of the American People, New York: Oxford University Press, 1965, 93-94. National Interagency Council on Smoking and Health. "State Activities," Bulletin, July-September 1971, 1.

Neuberger, M. B. Smoke Screen: Tobacco and the Public Welfare, Englewood Cliffs: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1963, 52, 62.

Redmond, D. E., Jr., "Tobacco and Cancer: The First Clinical Report, 1761," New England Journal of Medicine, 28-9 (1) : 21, 1970.

Regensburg, A. "The Tax That Destroys," NATD Coordinator, XXXI: 146, April, 1971.

Robert, J. C. The Story of Tobacco, Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1949, 11, 99-101, 106107, 117, 169, 247, 256.

"Study Says Cigarette Smoke Also May Harm Nonusers," Washington Post (Washington, D.C.), January 10, 1972, 1 (6).

"Tobacco Advertising Could End in 1975," Herald (Lexington, Kentucky), January 18, 1970, 7.

Tobacco Institute. "Connecticut and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, Undated], 20-23.

"Kansas and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, 1970, 9.

"Kentucky and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, 1971, 0.
- "Maryland and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, 1971, 9-10, 21, 23.
- "Massachusetts and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, 1971, 17.
-"Virginia and Tobacco," Washington: Tobacco Institute, 1971, 19, 22, 28, 29.

Tobacco Merchants Association. "Sales of Tobacco Products to Minors," March 1971, 1-4.

Tobacco Tax Council. "The Tax Burden on Tobacco," 1970, iii-iv, v, 2, 4-6,8,17,53.

U.S. Department of Agriculture. "Tobacco Situation,"

Economic Research Service, TS-136, June, 1971a, 29-31. - "Tobacco Situation," Economic Research Service, TS-137, September, 1971b, 7, 39-44.

Vlassis, T. "Should Pharmacists Sell Cigarettes?" Iowa Pharmacists, 24 (9) : 10, 15, 1969.

Wagner, S. Cigarette Country, -New -York: Praeger Publishers, 1971, 40, 63-64, 74, 80, 120-121, 166-173, 175, 190, 205, 216, 220.

Werner, C. Tobacco Land, New York: Tobacco Leaf Publishing Co., 1922, 100-102, 105, 358-359, 559. "Where Cigarette Makers Spend Ad Dollars Now," Business Week, December 25, 1971, 56-57.

Whiteside, T. "Annals of Advertising: Cutting Down," The New Yorker, December 19, 1970, 58-80.

7 USC � 511 (b) (d), 1935.

7 USC � 515, 1936.

7 USC � 1303,1938.

7 USC � 1312, 1938.

7 USC � 1314, 1938.

26-USC �-5701, et seq.

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