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« Snow | Main | Breaking the ice »
Thursday
Sep012011

Another university resists FOI

H/T to reader Ian for this story from the BBC about the University of Stirling resisting attempts by tobacco giant Philip Morris to get hold of research about teenagers' reactions to plain packaging for cigarettes. The university is claiming that handing the information over would amount to a breach of confidence.

Clearly if individuals' names are attached to the disclosure then they would have a case, but one can't help feeling that the university's argument is a smokescreen put up because they don't want to hand over the research. Whether this is because they have something to hide or because they just don't want to comply with the law remains to be seen.

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    - Bishop Hill blog - Another university resists FOI
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    - Bishop Hill blog - Another university resists FOI

Reader Comments (48)

A smokescreen... oh very good, very good.

;-)

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterJosh

" ....... the university's argument is a smokescreen ...." Quite.

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterPFM

To be honest lots of universities don't like the FOI , when people talk about a academic world they really mean it , academy does like to think about itself as a separate world that should be 'untouched' by outsiders let alone 'questioned ' by outsiders .
Unless it rubbish study they will not have names attached to the figures so claiming it will show identities is probable just an excuse to cover for the fact they don't want to give it out to this company .

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterKnR

The law won't need to be changed if governments cease to fund universities I suppose ...

Presumably the university is using the research to lobby government? If so, it seems fair to allow the tobacco industry (and anyone else) to see the evidence on which their lobbying is based. We get eneough clandestine lobbying without having to pay for it as well.

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:55 AM | Unregistered Commentermatthu

How to resist FoI:

The department initially complained that the application by the tobacco company was "vexatious" and so refused to comply with the request.

But the information commissioner said on 30 June that the request was not vexatious and found that the university had also failed to respond to the request within the time limit.

The university is currently preparing a response to the FoI request which it will pass to the Information Commissioner.

So it's been two months since the information commissioner told them to get on with it, and they haven't even responded yet! Not an approach which will win points with the ICO.

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterHaroldW

I'm holding my breath, hoping there aren't knock-ons to Climategate, you know, like: "Here's another example of big business riding roughshod over we poor universities. Time to show solidarity, etc."

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterIan_UK

KnR
I have no problem with Stirling keeping its research findings secret. I have no problem with UEA keeping its research findings secret.
If either want to use those findings to influence government policy or government action then keeping them secret is, in my view, a very big problem indeed. I am happy for the government spending my money to fund research (and we should be very limited in the extent to which we dictate where that research is supposed to lead). I am far from happy for anyone to use that research to alter my way of living and impose further taxation on me without the results of that research and the reasons for the conclusions it reaches being made widely available.
By all means live in your ivory tower. Set foot outside it and I expect an account of how you spend my money.

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

You and Yours Radio 4 today at noon, representatives from both sides being questioned, didn't catch names. University statement that the research was funded by a cancer charity and respondents to the questionaires believed that they were providing answers to combat smoking not for tobacco marketing, or words to that effect. So no biased data there then.

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterLord Beaverbrook

It should be relatively easy to anonymise the data - this is done all the time in surveys of this nature.

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:55 PM | Unregistered Commentermatthu

So, just to check then. If research at the Uni was funded by a Tobacco company and the cancer charity FOI'd them they would also refuse to give up the data?

Yeah. Right.

Sep 1, 2011 at 12:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterStuck-record

I'm a little confused here. The article doesn't make it clear if the research has been published yet. If it has, it's open to FOI, I would have thought. If not, it's just an ongoing in-house study with no released results, nothing to critique yet.

I've never heard of a study in progress being subjected to these information demands. Can someone with a bit more savvy in this area help me out?

Sep 1, 2011 at 1:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterLevelGaze

The studies have been published and the article in The Telegraph gives some more details.

The interviews, undertaken by the University’s Institute for Social Marketing unit since 1999, formed the basis for two major studies that analysed the negative effects of cigarette packaging and marketing on British youths.

The studies, published in the Journal of Adolescents, the European Journal of Public Health and the Tobacco Control journal, examined why teenagers started smoking and what they thought of marketing by tobacco companies.

Sep 1, 2011 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterBryce

Thanks for that information Bryce. It appears the FOI is legitimate.

Sep 1, 2011 at 1:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterLevelGaze

More lucrative work for Neil Wallis coming up

Sep 1, 2011 at 2:03 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charley

I am a carbon sceptic but feel that there is a qualititative difference between FOI about inanimate data of the kind used in climate science and opinions given by people under assurances of confidentiality in social science research. The latter can sometimes contain information which allows individuals to be identified, for example. There is a danger of a backlash over FOI because it is stretched too far away away from its original remit.

Sep 1, 2011 at 2:20 PM | Unregistered Commentercarbonneutral

According to one newspaper article, the interviews are anonymous and the subjects cannot be identified. I gather that Stirling's refusal is now on cost grounds.

Sep 1, 2011 at 3:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterJonathan Bagley

Did no-one also read this piece in the Indy by the same guy, science editor Steve Connor, comparing climate scepticism to the tobacco industry? Some outrageous lies and and lots of misleading claims, worth a post by Bish, eg.:

"In both cases, researchers were collecting the information in the belief that the data would be used only by themselves or shared with colleagues at other universities or research institutes engaged in the same line of work."

So the data is secret and no-one's allowed to know it, but we're still allowed to publish articles based on it where we claim the world is in immediate peril. But really, we never intended this data to be known by the public even though we're shouting to the rooftops about it, and no, you can't have it to check what we're saying, Heavens, it was never our idea that this data should ever scrutinized by anyone else, how dare you awful Nazi smoking type people want to look at it, didn't we tell you it was all just our own secret little project of no interest to you, just because it tells us that the world will end doesn't matter, I never thought anyone else from outside the brotherhood would want to look at it, so they can't, etc.

Sep 1, 2011 at 4:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterAnon

Thank you, Yer Grace, for a thought provoking thread. Despite being a long-time pipe smoker, my initial reaction was to flinch at the idea of a tobacco company getting information that it could use for marketing.... but that same information is also being used to promote legislation and regulation that directly affects the interests of the company. In a very real sense, the University is rejecting the FOI request because the requester just "wants to find something wrong" with the data.... and I suspect that there is. Commenter carbonneutral seems to be suggesting that FOI requests should be decided on the basis of the moral worthiness of the requester. I think we have been here before.

Sep 1, 2011 at 4:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterRobert E. Phelan

"Our funders will have to think carefully about the further funding of our research. I don't think for one moment a cancer charity is going to take kindly to paying us hundreds of thousands of pounds to give aid and succour to a multinational tobacco corporation."

Then don't take money from cancer charities while your research is subject to FOI legislation. Or change the makeup of the institution such that FOI legislation would not apply to future research.(Decline taxpayer funding?)

Sep 1, 2011 at 4:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterGareth

There are two main reasons why the tobacco company would want these data, neither of them particularly honest.

(i) as with the climate issue, to obscure the major research findings by overemphasizing any uncertainties (whether real or just made up) in the methodology or results

(ii) to study the responses in order to work how best to target their advertising at young people.

How many people die every year from smoking related causes?
Something like 100,000 in the UK alone - http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Smoking-The-Facts.htm


Its probably a mistake for "AGM doubters" to draw attention to this particular FOI request, as it reminds us all about the similarities between the campaign against climate science and that against the science that showed the links between smoking and lung cancer - with some of the same PR agencies involved in both campaigns of course

See http://www.merchantsofdoubt.org/

Sep 1, 2011 at 4:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterAll in it together

@All in it together

So, if it's someone you don't like, FOI rules no longer apply? If they're going to use the information in way you don't approve of, FOI disappears?

Of course, we need someone to decide who are the permissible recipients of FOI data - I expect you or someone you know will volunteer to decide that for us, eh?

Probably we can give you a nice big office and a bunch of civil servants to help with your 'work'. We'd have to give the Ministry a name that matched its task: Ministry of Truth, maybe?

</sarc> just in case you're dim enough not to realize it

The clue is in the name of the Act: Freedom. We don't want ghastly apparatchiks like you deciding who should or shouldn't get data and what the public can or cannot be allowed to see (for its own good).

Oh ...You wouldn't happen to be ZDB, would you?

Sep 1, 2011 at 5:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterCeri Reid

All in it together, you want to take money out of my pocket, you want me to make major changes, well shows me the evidenced your basing those demands on ?. I think that is perfectly fair question for the public to ask of scientists especial given the 'science is settled' and cannot be disputed , or so the the scientists claim .
And sadly little attempts to claim AGW skeptics are the same as tobacco lobbyist are actual counter productive in getting public support for AGW, so please keep them up.

Sep 1, 2011 at 5:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterKnR

All in it, a key principle of FOI is that reasons why someone wants the data are completely irrelevant.

Sep 1, 2011 at 5:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaulM

"Stirling's refusal is now on cost grounds"

Because they've had to pay for lawyers? They could have answered the FOI (which they'll have to do eventually) for nowt!

Sep 1, 2011 at 5:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames P

"I don't think for one moment a cancer charity is going to take kindly to paying us hundreds of thousands of pounds to give aid ...."

So the outcome will be unbiased then?

I'm sure Philip Morris will offer to match the grant for them to produce an equally unbiased report, which just coincidentally would draw the opposite conclusions.

Sep 1, 2011 at 6:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoe Public

Youre right this does have a familiar ring to it. Big tobacco has form on promoting it's own science , which means promoting doubts about regular science. It's well documented in the excellent book 'Merchants of Doubt' by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway, which I can highly reccomend.

Sep 1, 2011 at 6:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterHengist McStone

If it's research paid for out of the public purse then it should be available to the public unless there are very good reasons why not. Obviously publishing in a way that would identify people would be out of the question, but like census data, they could easily lump together individuals in a way that doesn't tell us anything about any one person.

Sep 1, 2011 at 8:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Haseler

Am I being cynical when I think the survey is all smoke and mirrors and no real evidence because it was made up?

Sep 1, 2011 at 8:50 PM | Unregistered Commenterivan

You're all very certain, self-righteous even, about our inalienable right to FOI. So, for example, I could demand from the police or security services details about spies infiltrated into potential terrorist or criminal organizations? And they'd have to give it to me, even if I were a member of one of those organizations ? Apparently that's OK for Ceri Reid who says to me (5:02) "So, if it's someone you don't like, FOI rules no longer apply? If they're going to use the information in way you don't approve of, FOI disappears?". Or PaulM who says "a key principle of FOI is that reasons why someone wants the data are completely irrelevant"

How about an FOI request for details of e-mails or meetings internal to Philip Morris which might clarify the reasons why they are interested in the raw data from the Stirling research. What they tell us is that it has something to do with new rules on packaging of cigarettes. What transparent rubbish! How the hell is it in the public interest to allow FOI requests that suit the interests of a large company whose profit derives from an addictive drug that causes 100,000 deaths every year in the UK alone.

Sep 1, 2011 at 10:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterAll in it together

I can see this being used as a test case for any legal actions regarding public access to university data. If the Philip Morris case is rejected, any Scottish university will be able to cite this as precedent to resist FOI, regardless of the subject of the research. Are the Stirling original FOI requests being fast-tracked through the courts in any way? Is there any corresponding tobacco-related FOI case currently pending in England & Wales (separate jurisdiction from Scotland)?

Even the BBC News didn't contrive an explicit link between the glacier-melting maniacs and the tobacco-bogeymen (as of 6:30 PM, 1st September, Radio 4), but the alarmists' responses in this thread are instructive. The Philip Morris story is a clear signal to the back-to-the-Black-Death-brigade to emerge from their rat-runs and engage their real enemy: the Human Race.

What an irony. Smoking kills, without a doubt, but we could all smoke a hundred a day, without diminishing the population to the level demanded by the greenies.

Sep 1, 2011 at 10:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterOwen Morgan

I have mixed feelings about this. It's not a public request for data, it's a request from a large commercial interest for some public funded data which it may use for it's own commercial gain. Tobacco politics aside, it seems a bit wrong that commercial enterprises could get free data by using or abusing legislation. If Stirling's published hockey-team style with no data, then it may be more reasonable to ask for the data supporting any publication to be published so it can be validated. I'm not convinced commercial interests should be able to demand free access to data with commercial value using FOI legislation though. But that's an issue with academia and the current law.

Stirling's excuses aren't very good though. Saying it'd take too much time to comply with a request for data just shows once again that academic data archival policies might be somewhat sub-optimal.

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterAtomic Hairdryer

Re: All in it together

> So, for example, I could demand from the police or security services details about spies infiltrated into potential terrorist or criminal organizations?

You could but you would be refused as there are provisions in the FOI act regarding information of that nature.

> How about an FOI request for details of e-mails or meetings internal to Philip Morris which might clarify....

Philip Morris is not a public organisation and so is not subject to the FOI act.
It does not matter why they want the data. If they are entitled to it then they should get it.

Stuck-record had a fairly valid point earlier. If the research had been funded by Philip Morris and a cancer charity has submitted the FOI would you be fighting to keep the research secret?

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

An interesting post openly inviting parallels between the tobacco industry and global warming deniers.

'Merchants Of Doubt' is not a book about AGW, for or against - but it IS a fascinating history of the links between those opposing restrictions on the tobacco industry and those opposing the science of AGW. (Not to mention opposition to measures to tackle the ozone and acid rain issues - also featuring the usual suspects)

I invite any open-minded climate skeptic - the Bishop would be ideal - to read and critically review this book . . .

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterScotsRenewables

Re ScotsRenewables

I agree it's worth a read, but sceptics may see something other than you'd like. The book is about the way lobby groups use and abuse science for commercial gain. Oreske's view is that's the tobacco lobby, but there's been some bad science from the anti-smoking lobby partly driven by some very large class-action suits. That's given us risks of second hand and now third hand smoking. What Oreskes overlooks is the same people and the same tactics have been happily embraced by the pro-AGW movement seeking to profit from climate change, only this time the big money is taking tobacco's place and is the trillion dollar carbon trading or "green" business interests, not cigarette makers.

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterAtomic Hairdryer

"Our funders will have to think carefully about the further funding of our research. I don't think for one moment a cancer charity is going to take kindly to paying us hundreds of thousands of pounds to give aid and succour to a multinational tobacco corporation."

This is a very telling admission. It says that they are determined not to give aid or succor to tobacco corporations. In other words the results of the research are completely predetermined. That's not research at all, it's advocacy. I certainly have no sympathy for tobacco companies. They are a bunch of evil and conspiring men, in my view. But an academic that does research determined to produce a specific result is delusional if he thinks his research is valid. In their heart of hearts they know this and that probably explains why they want to keep their data secret. It would not only give aid and succor to the tobacco interests, it would expose them as shameless advocates, pleading a cause in the name of research. The university is obviously in the employ of the cancer societies. Or thinks it is. How annoying to be asked to provide data to others who may not share the same single minded intent. The parallel with the AGW advocacy called research is pretty striking.

There was an interesting post by Charlie Martin at WUWT today. Here's a wonderful quote from it that applies to this issue: "The predictions of further warming are necessarily based on models. Now, it happens I did my PhD work on Federally funded modeling, from which I developed the NBSR Law (named after the group for which I worked): All modeling efforts will inevitably converge on the result most likely to lead to further funding."
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/09/01/reasons-to-be-a-global-warming-skeptic/

Sep 1, 2011 at 11:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterCoalsoffire

"All modeling efforts will inevitably converge on the result most likely to lead to further funding."

Perhaps. Or maybe:

"All FOI requests by large corporations will inevitably be directed at gaining information that may be used to increase their profits"

And if the cost of that profitability is more deaths from smoking-related diseases, more costs to the (taxpayer funded) NHS, well that's the free market system. Although, of course, in spite of the public harm caused by the tobacco industries, I have no equivalent right to demand to see the relevant documents from with Philip Morris.

Hypocritical, I call it

Sep 2, 2011 at 12:06 AM | Unregistered CommenterAll in it together

TerryS: "Stuck-record had a fairly valid point earlier. If the research had been funded by Philip Morris and a cancer charity has submitted the FOI would you be fighting to keep the research secret?"

Surely this just raises the question, why is research funded by a cancer charity subject to FOI while research funded by Philip Morris is not subject to FOI ? That's ironic, since there is in fact a greater likelihood of manipulation and bias of the results in that latter case.

Sep 2, 2011 at 12:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterAll in it together

Re: All in it together

> Surely this just raises the question, why is research funded by a cancer charity subject to FOI while research funded by Philip Morris is not subject to FOI ?

If the research for Philip Morris is performed by a publicly funded organisation then it would be subject to a FOI.
If Philip Morris does its own research then it isn't subject to FOI.
If a cancer charity does its own research then it isn't subject to FOI.

It is all fairly simple.

Sep 2, 2011 at 12:31 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

Re: All in it together

> "All FOI requests by large corporations will inevitably be directed at gaining information that may be used to increase their profits"

Well that is a shock. I thought corporations just randomly engaged in various activities just for the fun of it. I never realised they actually wanted to make a profit. Thanks for letting me know.

Sep 2, 2011 at 12:36 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

There are some legitimate reasons why a cigarette company (and the general public) might want to know more details of a research study. This is Government-funded research to justify legislation, without counter-studies for balance. Bearing in mind that the study was of 6,000 young people, who the Professors believe are highly impressionable from marketing.
1. Were the questions neutral and held in a neutral venue?
2. Did the resulting peer-reviewed article draw conclusions that the data substantiates? Are they statistically significant?
3. Can other conclusions be drawn by the data?

It should be borne in mind by those who jump to conclusions that
a) The two professors who did the study have PhDs in marketing and in social policy.
b) The study is not about the health affects of smoking. It is about justifying compulsory neutral packaging for cigarettes.
c) This particular study is very difficult to find on the internet, and is not listed on either of their websites amongst the publications. One has a list of over eighty.

One of the Professors was co-author of a similar study (only with adults), which got an unfavourable review in the Guardian. This time the sample size was 43, divided into 3 distinct groups.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2011/may/30/smokers-health-warnings-cigarette-packets

The level of research into the harm smoking can cause is considerable and of high quality. The original British Doctors Study than confirmed the link between both lung cancer and coronary thrombosis was ground-breaking statistically. That does not mean that all the policy research is of a similar quality.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Doctors_Study

Sep 2, 2011 at 12:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterManicBeancounter

I love people like All in it together, without them some stories I read just wouldn't be as funny as they otherwise would.

I mean if I never heard of FOI, I personally would have at least looked up what FOI was and who it applied to before commenting.

Sep 2, 2011 at 1:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterMatt K

From the Ecclesiastical Uncle, an old retired bureaucrat in a field only remotely related to climate, with minimal qualifications and only half a mind.

The British parliament (and lots of other legislative bodies as well, I suppose) has a long history of demanding management information from subsidiary bodies, notably including schools, the NHS, and the police. No doubt there are heaps of others. So school teachers spend hours filling in returns, not teaching; NHS managers hours fiddling their returns and not treating the sick and the police forces sit in police stations wrestling with their pens instead of the unruly on the streets.

It was not intended that these public servants abandon what they are meant to do in order to do this

Government clearly should count the cost of gathering all this invaluable information and make budgetary provision for it – maybe –or maybe they should decide that the information is not worth the cost and surrender the feed-back link in the management control loop.

It seems that the problem plagues universities’ responses under the FOI Act. No doubt bodies that spend public funds should be totally open about what they do with public funds. But who is going to pay for what’s involved?

The act maybe should have required the information requester to pay for the reasonable cost of providing the information, with rows about how much to be settled by the commissioner and the courts. I can hear the lawyers cheering. Or maybe the government should increase education, health, police and university contract budgets to pay. I’d applaud that one so long as it does not mean my tax bill has to rise.

Over to you, Mr Cameron.

Sep 2, 2011 at 3:29 AM | Unregistered CommenterEcclesiastical Uncle

I'm not sure this is a fitting story for BH or indeed a particuarly good example of universities subverting FOI requests. It leads the reader to conclude that climate realists are rallying round to help big tobacco.

Let's face it : the tobacco industry is in the business of encouraging an addiction that has an unfortunate side effect of leading to either illness or death or illness and then death.

As a heavy ex-smoker for the last 10 years now, I'd rather not have my viewpoint associated with the wants of the morally bankrupt tobacco industry.

Sep 2, 2011 at 2:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterFarleyR

Farley

I think you are letting your distaste for the tobacco industry prevent you from seeing the relevance to climate FOI. The law applies equally to unpleasant and to pleasant people.

Sep 2, 2011 at 4:19 PM | Registered CommenterBishop Hill

"The object of this Essay is to assert one very simple principle, as entitled to govern absolutely the dealings of society with the individual in the way of compulsion and control, whether the means used be physical force in the form of legal penalties, or the moral coercion of public opinion. That principle is, that the sole end for which mankind are warranted, individually or collectively, in interfering with the liberty of action of any of their number, is self-protection. That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant. He cannot rightfully be compelled to do or forbear because it will be better for him to do so, because it will make him happier, because, in the opinions of others, to do so would be wise, or even right.These are good reasons for remonstrating with him, or reasoning with him, or persuading him, or entreating him, but not for compelling him, or visiting him with any evil in case he do otherwise. To justify that, the conduct from which it is desired to deter him, must be calculated to produce evil to some one else. The only part of the conduct of any one, for which he is amenable to society is that which concerns others. In the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign."
J S Mill, On Liberty, 1859.

There is no argument that it was and would be wrong to hide from smokers the harm they are doing (or not doing) to themselves; but if any mentally competent adult should freely make an informed choice to do something dangerous - whether that's rock climbing, cave diving, hang gliding, racing driving, riding a motorcycle without a helmet, or trousers, joining the army, drawing cartoons of the prophet Mohammed, standing in front of tanks in Tiannemen square, eating cakes bought at a charity sale without an ingredients label or public hygiene licence, only eating *four* portions of fruit/vegetables some days, spraying their houses with DDT, lighting bonfires, tight-rope walking, juggling with axes, or smoking a pipe - then the rest of society should *butt out*. It's none of their business.

The moral bankruptcy of those who threaten liberty itself should also merit our disapprobation.

Advocacy science without balance is bad science, whatever the cause. Secrecy and selectivity subvert and sabotage the very reasons that science works, so if you really are concerned about people's health, it's a bad thing to do. Only if beating your opponents is more important to you than preventing harm does it make sense. Exposing that is a valuable service - it speaks to their true motivations.

Fighting for liberty, one unfortunately often finds oneself fighting on behalf of unpopular scoundrels, because they are the ones who are targeted first to set the precedent. It's difficult.

Sep 2, 2011 at 4:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterNullius in Verba

Ban tobacco.
Ban alcohol.
Ban automobiles.
Ban sex.
Ban everything.

Life is sexually transmitted and 100 percent fatal.

Sep 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterGilbert

BH of course obstruction of FOI requests is unacceptable. However the point i'm trying to make is that if you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas. Some would argue that "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" but who wants to be friends with a murderer?. An extraordinary lapse of judgement from you to headline this story IMHO Bish. Which goes to show you're only human then! :-)

Sep 2, 2011 at 8:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterFarleyR

A couple of questions. Who actually funded this study? Was it a charity or the gouverment (or both)? What was the name of the charity and is it truely a charity as people understand, or is it one of the fake charities which are funded by gouverment at first or second hand? Anyone know?

Sep 3, 2011 at 9:58 AM | Unregistered CommenterEddy

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