PLoS Medicine goes for worst of all.
This month also marks the implementation of a new policy on tobacco papers at PLoS Medicine.Imagine the second paragraph re-written:
While we continue to be interested in analyses of ways of reducing tobacco use, we will no longer be considering papers where support, in whole or in part, for the study or the researchers comes from a tobacco company. As a medical journal we do this for two reasons. First, tobacco is indisputably bad for health. Half of all smokers will die of tobacco use . Unlike the food and pharmaceutical industries, the business of tobacco involves selling a product for which there is no possible health benefit. Tobacco interests in research cannot have a health aim—if they did, tobacco companies would be better off shutting down business—and therefore health research sponsored by tobacco companies is essentially advertising. Publication is part of tobacco company marketing, and we believe it would be irresponsible to act as part of the machinery that enhances the reputation of an industry producing health-harming products.
Second, we remain concerned about the industry's long-standing attempts to distort the science of and deflect attention away from the harmful effects of smoking. That the tobacco industry has behaved disreputably—denying the harms of its products, campaigning against smoking bans, marketing to young people, and hiring public relations firms, consultants, and front groups to enhance the public credibility of their work—is well documented. There is no reason to believe that these direct assaults on human health will not continue, and we do not wish to provide a forum for companies' attempts to manipulate the science on tobacco's harms.
"Second, we remain concerned about the anti-smoking lobby's long-standing attempts to distort the science and exaggerate the harmful effects of smoking. That the anti-smoking lobby has behaved disreputably - exaggerating the harms of tobacco products, campaigning in favour of smoking bans, exploiting young people in anti-tobacco advertising campaigns, and hiring public relations firms, consultants, and front groups to enhance the public credibility of their work - is well documented. There is no reason to believe that these direct assaults on personal freedom will not continue, and we do not wish to provide a forum for these individuals' attempts to manipulate the science on tobacco's harms."
As good a case can be made against Glantz and ASH as can be made against tobacco industry funding. How many anti-tobacco public health researchers would be able to continue getting grants from Ministries of Health if their research found that smoking isn't as bad as the Ministry might have thought?