Exporting cancer to Africa

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With AIDS, malaria, and ebola to worry about, what’s a little emphysema? That’s the attitude of tobacco companies as they turn to Africa to console themselves for their loss of popularity in the First World.

Speakers at last week’s conference of the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, held in Guinea, lamented the growth of yet another health risk on the continent, reports the PANAFRICAN NEWS AGENCY. One tobacco representative explained that because of other health crises in Burkina Faso (little things like an average life expectancy of 40 years and high infant mortality), “the health problems which some say are caused by cigarettes just won’t be a problem here,” presumably because most smokers there won’t live long enough to develop lung cancer.

Tobacco interests have been especially successful at recruiting new smokers. Fifty-three percent of 15-year-old male Algerians smoke, and the rate of increase in tobacco consuption in Africa, at 3.2 percent per year, is the highest in the world.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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