Martin Drautzburg

I started smoking at the age of 16 and continued to smoke some 20 cigrattes a day, only interrupted by some painflul and unseccsessful quit smoking attempts, sometimes using patches and gums and lasting up to one year. This lead to a constant inner struggle. I felt that smoking was not only bad for my health, but also for my self-esteem. This was the biggest problem for me.

In 2009 I discovered swedish Snus and I quit smoking without any problems. I was shocked that the EU did not allow Snus to be sold outside Sweden. This was the first time I realized, that the EU health policies cannot be about health.

As long as I could still order Snus over the internet, I was a happy non-smoker. However, in 2012 after a verdict concerning a Finnish online shop, internet sales became virtually impossible. Some of my shipments were confiscated by the customs and finally online shops outright refused to ship to the EU.

I realized that it was only a matter of time until I run out of Snus, wouldn’t be able to stack up and start smoking again. Luckily at this time e-cigarettes were gaining popularity. So I bought my first e-cigarette in 2012, basically so I wouldn’t start smoking again as a consequence of the Snus ban.

The transition from Snus to e-cigarettes was painless. I started with an ego-style refillable tank system. I never used cigalikes. Intially I used liquids containing 18mg nicotine per milliliter. Today I am using 10mg/ml. Over the years my gear hasn’t changed dramatically, only today I am using refillable clearomizers and variable voltage batteries.

Ever since 2009 my consumption of combustible cigarettes has dropped from a pack a day to about four packs a year. There are still situations where I smoke an occasional cigarette, but unlike in my pre-snus days I do not feel compelled to smoke another one the next day. The addiction is completely under control and does not give me a headache and does not lower my self-esteem.

Ever since I was hit by the Snus ban, I follow the legislation process more attenively. I examine the statistics on VoteWatch and I draw conclusions which parties I will never vote for. Luckily some parties voted responsibly.

I also follow the media coverage more closely and I draw conclusion which media you cannot trust. Unfortunately this is virtually all of them. Today I get most of my information from online blogs and only watch the daily news to give me a good shiver.

I don’t know much about politics or economics, but I have quite some expertise about Snus and e-cigarettes and I use this expertise to separate the scientists from the quacks and the benevolent from the ruthless.