The Michigan Daily-Thursday, January 15, 1981-Page 5
.. cigarettes called stronger in Asia
HONG KONG (UPI)-Are American
and British tobacco companies ped-
dling stronger cigarettes to unsuspec-
ting Asians than to consumers at home?
Or did a well-meaning Hong Kong
consumer agency test cigarettes using
The controversy between the Con-
sumer Council of Hong Kong and the
tobacco industry broke out in Decem-
ber with the release of the test findings.
THE STUDY INDICATED that of 20
cigarette types checked, nearly all
were higher in tar and nicotine than the
same brands sold in the United States
and Britain, the council said.
The Hong Kong samples had 73 per-
cent more tar and 56 percent higher
nicotine content than the average of all
U.S. cigarettes, according to a council
The results were based on testing by
the government-sponsored National
Cancer Institute based in Washington,
D.C. About 100 samples of each brand
were purchased at random early in 1980
in "Hong Kong and analyzed using
methods employed by the U.S. Federal
Trade Commission, the council said.
AMONG THE CIGARETTES tested
were Marlboro, Kent, Viceroy, Win-
ston, Benson and Hedges, and Rogh-
mans, said Kenneth So, council
"We feel they (tobacco companies)
are practicing a double.standard, which
is to the detriment of the people of Hong
Kong," So said.
The council said the Consumers'
Association of Singapore noted in an
October report that cigarette manufac-
tureres were making lower tar and
nicotine products for developed coun-
tries than for developing nations.
THE CIGARETTE INDUSTRY
disputed the council findings. Philip~
Morris, manufacturer of Marlboro and
several other leading brands, called the
results "incorrect and misleading."
"There's something wrong with the
testing techniques," a company
spokesperson said. "Marlboro is the
same product in Hong Kong that it is in
The spokesperson said discrepancies
in tar readings might be explained by
the testing technique.
"YOU CAN MEASURE tar wet or
dry," he said. "The FTC measures dry
tar. We think that's what the difference
is, but we can't prove it. Marlboro's wet
tar is approximately equal to the
figures they (the council) used."
The council rejected that argument,
saying the testing was strictly in accord
with FTC standards.
"We stand by our results," So said.
THE COUNCIL has urged the Hong
Kong government to buy cigarette
testing apparatus and begin regular
checks of cigarettes sold in the colony.
Because of extensive promotion by
tobacco companies, which includes
television advertising, consumers in
Hong Kong "have still not been suf-
ficiently educated to be aware of the
dangers of cigarette smoking," So said.
Consumer demand for stronger
cigarettes is one possible reason for
higher tar and nicotine products in
Hong Kong, So said.
BUT THE PHILIP Morris spokesman
said that was not true of Hong Kong. He
did say his company produces higher
tar and nicotine cigarettes for Pakistan
and India under brand names like Red
and White, K2, Cavendar, and Four
"There have been attempts at lower
tar brands inthese markets, but as yet
these have been less than successful,"
The cigarette industry is a growth
market in Asia due partly to the in-
creasing population. Another factor is
that Asians have been switching from
home-rolled to manufactured cigaret-
By contrast, in the United States the
rate of growth of cigarette smoking is
on the decline, an industry source saiO,
and for years tobacco companies have
been diversifying. R. J. Reynolds, for
example, owns the Del Monte food con-
cern and Philip Morris produces Miller
"Asia is an area where they can con-
tinue to grow in the tobacco field," So
Soviets move 'back to basics'
MOSCOW (AP)-The Soviet
Education Ministry has promised to
improve the teaching of high school
mathematics following a barrage of
criticism by mathematicians, teachers,
The criticism is similar to that often
aimed at Western mathematics
programs: too much abstract
theorizing, and not enough emphasis on
basic arithmetic and algebra.
The critics here claim the Soviet
*math curriculum is getting so com-
plicated that even well-educated paren-
ts are having trouble understanding
their children's school work.
THE SOVIET UNION is one of the
world's leaders in sophisticated
mathematics, with research institutes,
specialists, and schools for especially
talented children rivaling the best in
After the 1957 Soviet launching of
"Sputnik"-the world's first artificial
earth satellite-mathematics training in
Soviet schools was singled out as a
model for the West.
In recent years, however,
;ni thema tics teaching in ordinary
schools has come in for increasing
criticism in the Soviet Union itself.
Ironically, experts place part of the
-btame for this on the import of Western
teaching methods, some of which were
!,developed in an effort to help close an
alleged "math gap" with the Soviet
'SOVIET OFFICIAL concern reached
a peak last September-and has
spowballed since then-with the
publication of a lengthy article on the
ftbject in Kommunist, the Soviet
'Communist Party's lefoing theoretical
fn the article, Lev Pontryagin, a
Fespected mathemattcian, said a math-
teching reform 10 years ago had led to
"strange situation" in Soviet schools.
* Pontryagin acknowledged that the
YModern world calls for more advanced
Mnath teaching, but said some of the
la'test Soviet textbooks have "a high
lIVel of abstraction and call for a cer-
tAn level of ,math sophistication that a
school pupil does not and cannot have."
HE CHARGED THAT "on one hand,
pupils are overwhelmed with for-
malistic, hard-to-understand material-
most of it unnecessary-while at the
same time they don't receive necessary
training in elementary arithmetic
operations and algebraic transfor-
mations, and in solving the simplest
equations and inequalities..."
Kommunist added in a footnote that
admission tests to higher education in-
stitutions show that "in recent years,
the level of mathematical preparation
in high schools has fallen sharply" with
"serious gaps" in pupils' knowledge
that rarely occurred before.
"It is essential to work out a concrete
plan to substantially improve the
situation in the shortest possible time,"
THE SEPTEMBER article and
Kommunist's own commentary set off
a blizzard of new criticism of
mathematics teaching that even
reached the October session of
Parliament, the Supreme Soviet.
Anatoly Logunov, rector of Moscow
State University, accused the Soviet
Education Ministry at the Parliament
session of making a "sharp turn in the
teaching of mathematics several years
ago without a sufficiently deep and
wide-ranging study of the crux of the
In the original article, Kommunist
also attacked the "uncritical import of
foreign accomplishments" in
mathematics teaching. Pontryagin said
Education Ministry officials had sought
to justify borrowing West European
methods by claiming a need to keep up
with "the latest developments."
BUT EVEN FOREIGN specialists,
he added, are now expressing disap-
pointment with ultra-modern ways of
In a more recent issue of Kommunist,
the Education Ministry promised "a
number of additional measures" to im-
prove mathematics teaching, including
corrections of present textbooks and
more research on new ones. It also said
a new geometry book has just been
prepared that will soon be tested.
Kommunist's assessment of math in-
struction in Soviet high schools con-
trasts with a U.S. government report,
issued in October, that said the Soviet
math and science programs in elemen-
tary and high schools "surpass that of
any other country.
nig methods Get Results!
The report, by the U.S. Department Call 764-0557
of Education and the National Science
Foundation, said "algebra and
geometry are taught in the 6th and 7th
grades, advanced algebra and
trigonometry are taught in grades 8 to
10, and calculus, which a total of about
500,000 Americans take during their
last year in high school or first in DITTILIES
college, is part of the high school
curriculum for over 5 million Soviet Sunday
students6''516 E. Lberty 9W453"0
Dir. MEL BROOKS. Color. Vicarious Hitchcock and a lot of main-line Brooks to
boot. Brooks has a lot of fun (the ha-ha and the oh-my-god kinds) as he pays
homage to the master. An incredible shower scene with Mel as the victim,
plus a stab in the back, kinky games and a human dog. Not to mention a Sin-
atra imitation with an improvised whip. 7:00 & 10:20.
THE 39 STEPS
Dir. Alfred Hitchcock. ROBERT DONAT, MADELEINE CARROLL. Donat must
watch his step as he tries to figure out what the heck kind of situation he has
gotten into. The police and several nasty spies ore after him, and he must
beware of the man with half a pinky. Carroll can't stand him, but unfor-
tunately she ends up handcuffed to Donat for a stint in the hinterland and
a night in a hotel. Lucky for her she has a nail file. And who is Mr. Memory
and what does he know about the mysterious 39 steps. 8:45 only.
All at LORCH HALL.
Friday: MY BODYGUARD
CINEMA GUILD- A Sprocket Ride to the Stars