The E.U.'s Formula for Banning Ads

GLENN CAMPBELL/GETTY IMAGES

SNUFFED OUT: Racing adverts will disappear

When the E.U.'s health ministers voted last month to ban tobacco advertising in the press, on the radio and on the Internet, many of them felt a strong sense of déjàvu. Why? Because in most E.U. countries tobacco ads have been banned for years, and the E.U. as a whole passed a directive to that effect in 1998. After a challenge from Germany, the European Court of Justice struck down that law, arguing that its measures went beyond the E.U.'s proper role of protecting the single market. Even this time, the Commission concedes that "in the absence of any Community action,...

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