The Constitutional Hypothesis
The Constitutional Hypothesis was a theory held inside Philip Morris in the early 1970s that people have a genetic predisposition for early mortality that is linked to difficulty adapting to the problems of existence. This would allow them to link smoking not to genetic factors, but to the "frustrations that these relatively unadaptable people experience." 
Related industry documents
- Description of the Constitutional Hypothesis, 1972 memo by Jetson E. Lincoln of Philip Morris
- Transcript of the introduction to a Tobacco Institute 1975 film called "The Answers We Seek" in which a scientists from various fields (pathology, statistics, biology) repeately link the onset of smoking-related disease to the stresses of everyday life.
- Publication, source and date unknown, about the Constitutional Hypothesis. Appears to be a journal article. The letters "SCAC" are handwritten on the copy.
- Two-page 1975 RJR memo sent by Frank Gerhardt Colby to Edwin J. Jacob of the Jacob, Medinger law firm. Proposes the "Constitutional Respiratory Weakness" hypothesis. Written 11 years after the U.S. Surgeon General first linked smoking with lung cancer.
- Additional Thoughts on the Constitutional Theory (Memo by Jetson E. Lincoln, July 31, 1972)
- The Constitutional Theory ("The 'Constitutional Theory' is the cigarette industry's most viable answer to the charges against it.")
- Proneness to Divorce as an Indicator of Constitutional Differences Between Cigarette Smokers and Non-Smokers
Other SourceWatch Resources
- J. Lincoln, "The Description of the Constitutional Hypothesis", Memo, Bates Number 1005136046, July 20, 1972.
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