Frank Davis, the blogger, the fighter, the polemist was, first and foremost, a thinker, a philosopher whose ideas have shaped the world. The infamous Tobacco Control (TC) industry, greedy for money and power, might have hoped to bludgeon that world into total submission, but it so happened that one man suddenly became a moral leader and the global symbol of resistance to TC, and look now – its evil empire is still far from victory.
How did he do it, that man? He did it by becoming a thinker, formulating ideas in a way that galvanized us all.
Let me try to sum up Frank’s philosophical legacy as I see it. I’m sure there’ll be a lot of additional opinions on that matter, or some corrections to my own phrasing of Frank’s ideas, but that will only make things better.
That TC ideology is based on huge medical lies and ugly brainwashing – that’s not exactly Frank. That’s rather Michael McFadden, the master of statistics, who showed me how to smell the fox in all that avalanche of scary figures about the evils of tobacco. And then there are many medical experts, anonymous or opened, who help us all to see the picture. And there also was Gian Turci who showed us what fighting spirit is.
While Frank did something else. “Lost for words” – that was the name of one of his posts. He asked himself: why do all those millions of smokers worldwide do not resist TC, while knowing very well that they are faced with a total abomination? Maybe that’s because all these people cannot find the proper words to express their feelings? “So let’s help them to find the right words”, was my answer. And I try my best to do it, again and again.
That’s the way the human race is made, human feelings of what is right and wrong come first, but these feelings are next to useless until somebody, a poet or a philosopher, finds the right words for these feelings. And then something snaps. It’s always the word that is in the beginning.
The other pillar of Frank’s legacy is in fact a crude drawing. He drew a circle, like a large plastic bag, containing other circles (bags) which, together, constitute the meaning of our life, all these things we are living for. There are friendships, there are travels, and music… I’m afraid I don’t remember the exact list of these things, each of us may compile a personalized list of the kind. And, yes, health was there too, one of many bags inside the big one.
But then Frank drew another picture, where health has been bloated like an ugly frog, squashing everything else, strangling all the rest of life’s values. That’s our life according to these TC people, said Frank.
It’s a new and ugly religion, he said. It’s in a fight with Christianity, substituting it with false idols of safety and even, maybe, eternal life. That extremist religion subjugates people by making them mortally afraid for their health and driving them to hate other people, a presumed threat to their health.
Needless to say, we see a lot of that ideology in our days of COVID reset, and Frank’s circles help us to keep our heads sane.
More than that, now there are millions of people around us who repeat it all, all those things about a new and ugly religion, about fear and hatred as instruments to divide and conquer societies. In fact, that idea now is all too obvious. But who has launched it into the world years ago, like in 2008, when Frank started his blog?
Ideas are free to flow from head to head, they go forth and multiply at their own volition, you cannot always attribute them, much less own them. So I may be wrong ascribing them to one man only. Maybe that’s because I admire Frank and miss him too much.