Last week Christopher Snowdon posed the question "James Reilly: liar or simpleton?"
I would suggest that there is a third alternative – the man is insane.
In the following clip he quite deliberately and calculatedly presents a lie as a fact to the committee on plain packaging.
I must assume that Reilly is a reasonably intelligent person, seeing as he somehow managed to qualify as a doctor, so the explanation for this lie must either be that he failed to do any research and just went along with Tobacco Control's propaganda or else he sincerely believes that lying to his own parliament is perfectly acceptable as a weapon against the tobacco industry.
Reilly's obsessional hatred for the tobacco industry is patently obvious. He all but says that those poor Swedes are slashing their gums because the industry forces them to. They are hapless puppets in the face of the Evil Industry who will try anything to force people to consume tobacco.
Reilly was interviewed on the radio yesterday. I would urge you to have a listen.
He really does seem to believe that the tobacco industry is the epitome of all that is evil. Apparently their sole aim is to corrupt "our cheeeldren" and the health of our nation? If you are not 100% against them then you must be on their side. If you have any dealings with them whatsoever then you are as evil as them. He can barely bring himself to mention them by name and spits the words out as if to prevent himself from becoming contaminated.
One of his criticisms of the industry is "their inability to come out and tell the truth" which is somewhat bizarre after seeing the video above?
"We are fighting for the right for people to live their lives to their full potential here in Ireland, in Europe and across the World"? Does this man seriously believe that he is on a crusade to save the world?
Note that the tobacco industry does not have customers – they are "addicted people"!
The part that worries me the most is his assertion that "we" will fight Big Tobacco to the very end in the courts regardless of cost. Big Tobacco has "billions and billions and billions" but we have the Irish People and The Truth. Somehow the latter is a winning combination and is going to defeat the finest legal minds?
The man is clearly out of touch with reality. He is letting his obsessional hatred for an industry cloud his judgment and is going to cost this country billions to defend the "plain packs" idea that has proven to have little or no effect.
The man is not only insane but is dangerous.