because he resumed smoking, not the other way around. Fifty million former smokers in this country are proof that he could have succeeded if it had been important enough to him. In any case, why would he try to quit if he didn't think smoking was bad for his health? It's not surprising that the jurors overlooked such telling details, given how confused they seemed to be. The $3 billion in punitive damages they awarded was more than 500 times the $5.5 million in compensatory damages -- a ratio that suggests a howl of outrage rather than a reasoned judgment. "It wasn't to punish," said one juror, apparently unclear on the concept of punitive damages. Another said, "This man's life is over -- $3 billion doesn't even begin to cover it." But the $3 billion wasn't supposed to "cover" anything; that was what the compensatory damages were for. The scandal in this case is not the old, familiar story of the tobacco industry's dishonesty. It's the utter failure of these jurors to set aside their emotions and reach a verdict based on a careful evaluation of the evidence.