Poisonous Little Reptile

A day or so back, Sheila left a link in the comments to the blog of John Redwood, MP. In it, he wrote:

Let us begin with the vexed question of tobacco.

I am a non smoker. I accept the medical advice that smoking can be damaging to your health. I decided not to smoke as a teenager, when I discovered that my lungs rejected smoke when I tried a cigarette. I always disliked the smell of tobacco smoke, and the taste smoking left in my mouth.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve always found John Redwood a bit creepy. When he first appeared on TV, he used to have an weird, convulsive neck movement, which sort of looked like he was screwing his own head back on. And he had zero sense of humour. He was perhaps British politics’ Mr Bean. As Welsh Secretary, he was once caught mouthing the wrong words for the Welsh national anthem.

And I can well imagine he was the sort of creep who couldn’t smoke a cigarette without first calling an ambulance. In fact, he’s probably the sort of creep who would never have tried a cigarette in the first place unless someone had sat on his chest and forcibly stuck one in his mouth. Same probably applied with beer and spirits. I bet he never learned to ride a bicycle either. Or roller-skate. Or climb trees. Or swim.

I am also a freedom lover. If tobacco remains a legal substance I have no wish to stop others smoking in ways which do not annoy others.

This is bollocks. John Redwood voted for the UK smoking ban. Anyone who did that is not – repeat, not – a freedom lover. He may have done any number of freedom-loving things in his life for all I know, but the smoking ban provides the true and exact measure of love of freedom. Vote against it, and you were a paragon of freedom. Vote for it, and you were an authoritarian little shit.

And it’s ‘annoyance’ that matters to him, not health, it seems. He doesn’t smoke, and he doesn’t like anyone else smoking either. And he’s quite happy to ban whatever he doesn’t like.

The law has moved on, and now favours the majority who do not smoke and controls the places where smokers can smoke. Today the issue is should the law be moved further?

Is there somewhere that smokers can smoke?

And is that the issue? Does he really want to tighten the law further? Well, yes, he clearly does. He’s not just a non-smoker; he’s an antismoker:

Should government leave things as they are? Should it ban more advertising/promotion like the packet designs? Should it make smoking illegal?

No option there to relax or repeal the sodding law. But then, what else is to be expected from a tyrannical little scumbag?

I left a comment on the blog, pithily summarizing the above arguments. It didn’t get through moderation, somehow or other. Clearly a self-important little twat like John Redwood doesn’t like being criticised. But then, is that much of a surprise either?

And most of the comments that did get published weren’t supportive of him either. But then, none of them suggested that he go screw himself with his own front door knocker, I suppose.

But for me it illustrated yet again something that has been a constant for the last six years. And that is that, as soon as some public figure is revealed to be an antismoker, any good opinion that I may have had of them completely evaporates within the space of a few seconds. And conversely, when I find out that some public figure smokes, my opinion of them jumps instantly.

I even think that if I found out that Jack the Ripper occasionally enjoyed a cigar, I’d feel a surge of new sympathy for that much-misunderstood (and normally kindly and considerate) man. Perhaps it was that those unfortunate harridans hated smoking, and were busily telling him to stub it out, or go outside and take his filthy habit with him, when he sort of snapped, and began to unfasten the straps on his black bag. And who wouldn’t?

John Redwood seems to be quite thoughtful, and writes lots of stuff on economics, some of which I might even agree with. But I never read any of it. Because he was one of the MPs who voted for the smoking ban in February 2006, and I’ll never forgive him. Nor any of the rest of them. And it has poisoned everything. It’s the only thing I can remember about any of them. Like with Jack the Ripper.

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75 Responses to Poisonous Little Reptile

  1. Frank, you (And Leggy too!) would probably enjoy “A Toy For Juliette” from the sci-fi collection, “Dangerous Visions.” (And yes, it IS relevant to your post!)

    :>
    MJM

  2. Tony says:

    I think John Redwood did vote for a ban in pubs but he also voted for clubs to be exempt. So he wasn’t as bad as some. To be fair, he did allow a lot of comments (including mine) that were critical of the smoking ban, on his blog.

    • beobrigitte says:

      Which comments ended up being the majority? The odd critical comment allowed gives the impression of that the replies reflect public opinion.

    • Frank J says:

      But he hasn’t allowed three comments of mine and, I note, others have the same problem. I think he’s trying to pretend a ‘balance’ when as we all know, there isn’t. Most anti smoker/smoking comments on this matter, online, are swamped with replies, a single figure percentage of which is in support.

    • Kevin Hoover says:

      Your comments were deleted because they were anonymously posted. You’re welcome to add comments using your name. You’ll note multiple other critical comments, which are signed per our attribution policy.

      • nisakiman says:

        My first comment I posted under my own name. It wasn’t published. Other comments which were published were posted under anonymous user names (Harleyrider and Junican are two which come to mind). So what you say is patently not true.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Well then I apologize for the error. We would love to have your comments. Please feel free to report and I’ll be more careful with the delete button!

        • nisakiman says:

          Oh, and let us not forget “all-smokers-are-stupid-hopeless-addicts” Bazman. I guess with a name like that, he must come from Uzbekistan, eh?

        • nisakiman says:

          Well you could start by un-deleting my comment of yesterday. My online username is nisakiman, and has been for ten years. It is what people in the blogosphere know me as. It’s not an ‘Anonymous’. I am easily contacted by email (which you have with my post), and my email displays my name loud and clear.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Alas, I just went through all the deleted comments and don’t see any that have attribution. They are all labeled “anonymous.”

          We’re old school with regard to attribution. But it needn’t be a dealbreaker – just add your name, then we’re good to go.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Well there you go. What a wacky misadventure! All the same, anyone may post a comment at http://www.arcataeye.com.

          if you visit, please check out our advertising rep Jada Brotman’s column condemning our town’s new smoking ban. It’s been quite a hit.

        • Frank Davis says:

          I’ll take a look. I got involved in California’s Proposition 29 last year, at the request of one of my Californian readers.

      • Frank J says:

        Rubbish. All comments were posted under my name and e-mail. I never post anonymously and, certainly, not about this subject. Admit it. you wished to show a false balance.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Well Frank, if you look at the comments, you will find plenty of critical comments, all with names on them.

          I can’t prove a negative, but the only comments I deleted were labeled “Anonymous.” Feel free to add your signed comments, and I appreciate your input.

        • Frank Davis says:

          My single comment was posted under my own name, with my email address, and my website. It wasn’t an anonymous comment.

          But why should I believe that you have anything to do with John Redwood, given that you’ve given the email address of a northern Californian town, and you’re using a California IP address?

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Frank, I simply don’t have that comment. I’ve looked twice. Please repost it and I will make sure it gets on and stays on.

          Nor do I have any idea who John Redwood is. I have never heard that name before.

        • Frank Davis says:

          Well, since we’re talking about comments that have been left on John Redwood’s blog, where did you think the comments were being posted?

        • magnetic01 says:

          Frank (and others), Kevin Hoover has nothing to do with John Redwood. I noted Hoover’s article in a link below, where my comments specifically had been deleted, i.e., another example of where comments had been deleted. Hoover has followed the link back to this blog where he has concluded, erroneously, that most of the comments about comment deletion are about him, which they are not. It’s a case of cross-wiring/mistaken identity. There is a point of humor in there somewhere. :)

        • smokervoter says:

          Perhaps I can shed some light on this. I’ve never been to Arcata (too damn far north for me) but I know a thing or two about it. A large portion of the gross city product consists of two crops (trees); cannabis sativa for smoking and redwood trees for lumber. Redwood is a beautiful piece of lumber that resists termites and looks terrific. It is carpenters dream too, it saws like butter.

          Years ago I think I remember seeing the name John Redwood on DP’s site as one of the good guys of British politics, a deregulatory Adam Smith type. I took note of his name because I’ve probably installed 5,000+ board feet of the stuff in my lifetime. I wondered if there were redwoods growing over there because I’d always heard they were only to be found in California.

          I think I might have mentioned here before that I lived in a cabin under a big ole’ redwood tree with a Benson&Hedges smoking hippy chick for almost two years in the hills above Santa Cruz.

          On balance this is a good thing, especially if some northern Californian liberal fascists get exposed to Banging On, Leggy and everyone else. They’re in dire need of some serious introspection. Truth be told you British are much more interested in personal freedom than us Yanks. We’re all show and no go. There’s no Nigel Farage w/ a 20% following to be found here. I wish it were so.

          It doesn’t surprise me that there’s two sides to this (i.e., Jada Brotman) Arcata smoking ban because there’s always been a faction (usually about a quarter) of the folks in Deep North Tobacco Hatin’ Kalifornia Klan Kountry who are real old school liberals.

          They’re who I hung around with in Santa Cruz (the loyal opposition of sorts) after my great disenchantment in the early 70s and we had an absolute blast together clashing with all of the serially grouchy, Nouveau Puritan, hipster-nazis in town.

          I absolutely loved this line from Jada Brotman’s excellent rant: “If I wanted to live in a nauseatingly anal town like Santa Cruz or Carmel, I would.” Truer words were never spoken.

          Note to everyone who leaves a post over there – DO include the urls of Frank, Leggy, Junican, Jay et al. et al. The state you will be educating will be Yours Truly’s.

        • magnetic01 says:

          Kevin, America has a long history with antismoking hysteria. Unfortunately, Americans don’t seem to be too familiar with even their own recent history:
          http://www.americanheritage.com/content/thank-you-not-smoking
          http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=19981129&slug=2786034

          Kevin, I’m going to post my comments to your article again. The Yahoo name will come up the same as before – there’s nothing I can do to change this. Please do not delete them. I’m not attempting to “vandalize” the comments section. I’m simply providing some historical context for the current round of antismoking hysteria.

      • Kevin Hoover says:

        By the way, I really wish I could smoke. I am sometimes envious of people who can. I have smoked Winstons, KOOLs, Marlboro Lights, Shermans, Dorals and several other brands, back in the day. But I had to quit for health reasons. Not because I didn’t like smoking!

        • magnetic01 says:

          “By the way, I really wish I could smoke. I am sometimes envious of people who can.”

          Kevin, welcome. Now, Kevin, you’re not serious. It would be very difficult to gather that from your article entitled “No More Tyranny Of The Smoking Minority”. Or are you just playing devil’s advocate, and poorly at that?

          I’m the one who posted the four comments you deleted. I’m not sure why they came up as an “anonymous” posting. I’ve used Yahoo to log on many times before without problems. Notwithstanding, you may want to read the contents of those comments and pass them on to Jada Brotman.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          But think about it. There’s no real reason why one can’t enjoy smoking, and at the same time recognize the noxiousness of the exhaust.

        • Frank Davis says:

          There’s also no reason why one can’t enjoy smoking, and at the same time deny that the exhaust is in the least bit noxious.

        • magnetic01 says:

          Kevin, did you actually read my comments….. before deletion?

        • magnetic01 says:

          Kevin, do you want me to re-post the comments so you can read them…. and delete them again?
          :)

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          magnetic01: Yes, please re-post your remarks, but use a real name. No, I generally don’t bother reading the anonymous comments. I just dump ‘em, regardless of their point of view.

          The reason we have this attribution policy and curate our comments is that in the past we have had quite a problem with trolling and verbal vandalism by anonymous commenters. So much so that people were scared off, fearing vicious attacks. Requiring a name makes people more responsible and issue-oriented.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          “and at the same time deny that the exhaust is in the least bit noxious.”

          You know, this reminds me of when our city started enforcing restrictions on unleashed dogs at our wildlife sanctuary. We had biologists talking about the negative impacts on migratory waterfowl, individuals who had been chased and bitten by loose dogs and tons of other evidence that the loose dogs were a serious problem. But a few unreasonable dog enthusiasts refused to acknowledge any issue with them, or compromise in any way for the betterment of the environment.

          Not the least bit noxious? Not the least bit? Please. Maybe not to you, but to the children who play on our town square, their sometimes-pregnant moms, senior citizens and, well, me, the cigarette smoke is a foul blight. It really is.

        • Frank Davis says:

          the cigarette smoke is a foul blight. It really is.

          No it isn’t. I’m 65 years old and I grew up in a time when most people smoked. My father smoked 60 a day. My mother was a social smoker. My father smoked at work, and at home, and in cars, and in restaurants and bars, just like everybody else did.

          And I didn’t mind at all. Neither did my brother. Nor did any of my friends. Nor did it do us any harm either.

          In fact, I always liked the smell of tobacco smoke. It’s a rich, warm aroma. Although it could get a bit too much occasionally in a very smoky room.

          People like you, and children and moms you mention, have been taught to hate smoke. You’ve been thoroughly propagandised. You probably believe whatever ‘experts’ tell you. In fact, I imagine you probably believe in global warming as well (just a guess). And I know this because I saw the same happening to my own friends over a period of 20 or 30 years.

          And next they’ll get you to start hating something else. And you’ll do what they tell you.

        • Marie says:

          “People like you, and children and moms you mention, have been taught to hate smoke”

          I grew up with my grandfathers cigar smoke and my fathers cigarette smoke. I never noticed at all. I loved my father and my grandfather, and so did my mother. There was love, not hate, because nobody taught us to hate.

          … and my grandmother too, of course.

        • magnetic01 says:

          From Bayer & Stuber
          “…..In the last half century the cigarette has been transformed. The fragrant has become foul. . . . An emblem of attraction has become repulsive. A mark of sociability has become deviant. A public behavior is now virtually private. Not only has the meaning of the cigarette been transformed but even more the meaning of the smoker [who] has become a pariah . . . the object of scorn and hostility.”
          http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/full/10.2105/AJPH.2005.071886

          This change from fragrant to foul has not come from the smoke which has remained a constant. The shift is an entirely psychological one. Unfortunately, the way the shift is manufactured is through negative conditioning. The constant play on fear and hatred through inflammatory propaganda warps perception. Ambient tobacco smoke was essentially a background phenomenon. Now exposure to tobacco smoke (SHS) has been fraudulently manufactured into something on a par with a bio-weapon like, say, sarin gas. There are now quite a few who screech that they “can’t stand” the “stench” of smoke, or the smoke is “overwhelming”; there are now those, hand cupped over mouth, that attempt to avoid even a whiff of dilute remnants of smoke – even outdoors. There are those that claim that, arriving from a night out, they had to put all of their clothes in the washing machine and scrape the “smoke” off their skin in the shower. There are even those that claim they are “allergic” to tobacco smoke. Yet there are no allergens (proteins) in tobacco smoke to be allergic to.

          And it didn’t stop with just the smoke. Cigarette butts – heretofore unheard of – suddenly became a “monumental problem” too. These are all recent phenomena born of toxic propaganda; it is an expanding hysteria. It says nothing about the physical properties/propensities of tobacco smoke. These people are demonstrating that they have been successfully conditioned (brainwashed) into aversion. They are now suffering mental dysfunction such as anxiety disorder, hypochondria, or somatization. Typical symptoms of anxiety disorder are heart palpitations, chest tightness, shortness of breath, headache, dizziness, etc. These capnophobics (smokephobics) are no different to those irrationally attempting to avoid cracks in the pavement lest their mental world come crashing down. Questionable social engineering requires putting many into mental disorder to advance the ideological/financial agenda. It is the fanatics/zealots/extremists and their toxic mentality and propaganda that have long been in need of urgent scrutiny.

        • Kevin Hoover says:

          Well, I don’t know what good the ad hominem attacks are, other than to signify a lack of logical arguments.

          I’m also mystified how anyone can purport to know what stinkarette smoke smells like to anyone else. The ideology seems to precede and eclipse the evidence here.

          What a foolish thing to champion – cancer-causing, obnoxious air pollution and a filthy habit.

        • magnetic01 says:

          “The use of tobacco, in any form, is a dirty, filthy, disgusting, degrading habit….
          You have no more right to pollute with tobacco smoke the atmosphere which clean people have to breathe than you have to spit in the water which they have to drink.
          …. use of the filthy, nasty, stinking stuff [tobacco]”

          …….

          The quote is from an anti-tobacco billboard (photo circa 1915) on the road leading into Zion, Illinois, USA. When considering the sentiments appearing on the billboard, it must be remembered that this was many, many decades before the concoction of secondhand smoke “danger”. Zion City was a “utopian” community established in the early-1900s by John Alexander Dowie representing a so-called (questionable) “Christian” sect (Christian Catholic Church). Tobacco, alcohol, and gambling were banned within Zion.
          http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/whi/fullimage.asp?id=55422
          http://yeskarthi.wordpress.com/2010/03/27/1915-anti-smoking-sign-zion-illinois/
          ……
          Serious, dangerous fanaticism/extremism was rife in America right up to WWII. The Temperance (religious leanings) and Eugenics (physicians, physicalists) Movements, both having dictatorial tendencies and a delusional emphasis on and obsession with physical health at the expense of all other dimensions of health, wreaked considerable damage in America. The EM was by far the most influential in America and eventually produced catastrophe in Nazi Germany with global consequences. The Temperance and Eugenics Movements shared the anti-tobacco sentiments in the quote above. While they attempted to change society with destructive consequences, Dowie chose to create his own “protected”, albeit highly dysfunctional, community.

          Kevin, you would have fitted right in with the antismoking zealots of a century ago in America.

        • magnetic01 says:

          Kevin, America has a long history with antismoking hysteria. Unfortunately, Americans don’t seem to be too familiar with even their own recent history:
          http://www.americanheritage.com/content/thank-you-not-smoking
          http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=19981129&slug=2786034

          Kevin, I’m going to post my comments to your article again. The Yahoo name will come up the same as before – there’s nothing I can do to change this. Please do not delete them. I’m not attempting to “vandalize” the comments section. I’m simply providing some historical context for the current round of antismoking hysteria.

        • Frank J says:

          “What a foolish thing to champion – cancer-causing, obnoxious air pollution and a filthy habit.”

          And you are in charge of moderation”?

  3. junican says:

    I also had a couple of comments accepted.
    I think that we have to accept the limitations. We can use such blogs to counter the ‘accepted wisdom’ as stated by the unthinking zombies. Counter the hatred with sadness that the country has come to such a pass that hatred is encouraged. Counter any suggestion that health has improved by describing loneliness and social exclusion (you can even quote the new Public Health England CEO on that! ["Social exclusion is as bad a smoking 15 cigs per day"]). And take every opportunity to describe the ‘slippery slope’. “How happy would you be if your bottle of Chablis shoved pictures of diseased livers in your face with the word ‘Chablis’ in small letters,barely distinguishable from alcohol dependency helplines? And all contained in a grotty, yellowish, standardised, half-litre bottle”
    In that way, we win over the waverers. Let us never forget the Mirror poll which showed that 80% are against the smoking ban.

    • “In that way, we win over the waverers. Let us never forget the Mirror poll which showed that 80% are against the smoking ban.”

      The big pollers here in the US are the Gallup folks. One of the things they’re proudest of is their steady identical year after year polling showing trends.

      Five or ten years ago they included “A ban in all bars” in their poll. Unfortunately for the Antis only about 25% of the population liked the idea and it didn’t get any better over time. So last year Gallup CHANGED its polling to get rid of the question and lump bars in with restaurants! Absolutely incredible that they could have corrupted an institution that has built its entire reputation upon being incorruptible!

      Sad.

      - MJM

  4. magnetic01 says:

    “I left a comment on the blog, pithily summarizing the above arguments. It didn’t get through moderation, somehow or other.”

    I’m with you, Frank. I posted 4 comments. Three were dumped entirely (mostly historical information); the fourth was published with some critical information edited out. Interesting was some of the mindless drivel that was published, like the following from the neurotic antismoking bigot, “Bazman” (all separate comments):

    ……Actually the law does allow for this smoke in doorways. It is not being applied though. They are addict Jerry can you understand this? Not like coffee or chocolate ‘addicts’ but true drug addicts. Who need to be inconvenienced and helped in this addiction. Not encouraged.

    This is clearly wrote by a non smoker defending smoking a subject he knows nothing about. Why should you have to’ escape the smoke’ and think it is OK that you have to? Give it a go for about 20 years jerry and get back to use jerry with your findings…

    There is no ‘freedom to smoke’. They are addicts and have no choice.

    Absolutely not true and if it did is the government to raise money from ill health?

    This would not make my trip to the pub better and as I am in the majority of non addicts the smoking ban stands.

    There is some sort of safe level of cigarette smoke and we must put up with the smell from addict who have in reality no choice or freedom from their addiction? The fact that traffic pollution exists make smoking less harmful? It’s like saying to welders who smoke why do you need protection from welding fumes. What next the reintroduction of lead and asbestos in ‘safe levels’. You believe there are safe levels of these? You are wrong? Ram it.

    …. Breathing in smoke or fume is not dangerous and has been proven not to be? What planet are you on?

    So non smokers have to breath in (muck ed)to allow for this?

    They can smoke outside and you are putting smoking on non smokers believing that only smokers go to pubs. These are modern times and smoking is out of order whether you see it as nanny state or not. The idea that breathing in second hand smoke or any other sort of fume has no effect is a fantasy. The truth is self evident. Look at the faces and skin of smokers. Ram it.

    This argument about passive smoking and the defence of smoking falls down of the basis that they seem to think that smoking is normal and non smokers should have to put up with smoking if the majority smoke. They do not. Smoking is not normal natural behaviour. They need to not inflict smoking on others not the other way around. They are tobacco addicts and should be treated as such.

    • nisakiman says:

      Me too. I posted the same comment twice, once on Saturday, and then when it didn’t appear by the following morning, again on the Sunday. It wasn’t inflammatory, nor was it insulting to anyone. But it obviously wasn’t what he wanted people to read, for some reason. Yet as you point out, Mag, there seemed to be lots of very derogatory and typically anti comments from that moron Bazman. I can understand moderating out ad homs and inflammatory claims (such as ‘Bazman’ posted’), but what the fuck is the point of inviting discussion / opinion on a subject if you only publish stuff you don’t dislike?

      Or is this just another ploy to give the impression that people really like smoking bans and the majority want to see plain packaging?

  5. magnetic01 says:

    Speaking of mindless drivel, check this opinion. (Bear in mind, too, that this concerns Arcata which is in northern California):
    http://www.arcataeye.com/2013/07/kevin-hoover-no-more-tyranny-of-the-smoking-minority/

    I left a number of comments. They were initially published, then all were removed. Following other comments to the article, I re-posted my comments. All were, again, removed. This was one of the removed comments:

    Non-smokers are simply people that do not smoke. In contrast, anti-smokers hate smoke/smoking/smokers – misocapnists. Anti-smokers are the minority. Anti-smokers like Kevin typically hijack the entire group of non-smokers and pretend they speak for all of them. Most non-smokers do not have hyper-reactive, inordinate reactions to wisps of smoke. There is every reason to believe that this disproportionate “sensitivity” to smoke is neurotic: It is a projection of a troubled mental state. It also helps to explain why the history of anti-smoking is littered with wild exaggerations, inflammatory lies, and bigotry. The finger-wagging anti-smokers that promote themselves as “moral superiors” are moral fakes.

    • beobrigitte says:

      Non-smokers are simply people that do not smoke.
      Exactly. That is what my non-smoking friends tell me.
      More so, they are the ones interested in ventilation technology. To them this is the most obvious solution rather than imposing smoking bans, killing various trades and treating their smoking friends like lepers.

      The non-smokers distance themselves vehemently from the anti-smokers.

  6. beobrigitte says:

    Somebody using this kind of introduction
    This week I wish to examine just how much we want the government to interfere in our lives in the pursuit of good.
    takes it upon himself to speak without prior consultation of the individuals he intends to speak for.

    And most of the comments that did get published weren’t supportive of him either. But then, none of them suggested that he go screw himself with his own front door knocker, I suppose.

    You might have upset this vulnerable little soul just too much.
    Maybe you could have worded this a little different, e.g. ‘Perhaps you would enjoy applying you neck jerks to the hip area when passing your front door. Since you do not enjoy a cigarette, what do you do after?’

    Our ‘freedom lover’ does not waste time:

    Should government leave things as they are? Should it ban more advertising/promotion like the packet designs? Should it make smoking illegal?

    Advertising/promotion of tobacco products is virtually nonexistent. I personally would love to have this guy back on telly:

    Packet designs ensure that I REALLY do get the tobacco brand I smoke. Here in England I pay £15 for 50 gr. of tobacco (approx. £13 are TAX) so I would like the same privilege in future. Surely our ‘freedom-lover’ supports this, doesn’t he?

    The law has moved on, and now favours the majority who do not smoke and controls the places where smokers can smoke. Today the issue is should the law be moved further?

    In which direction would our ‘freedom-lover’ move the law?
    Isn’t a minority group supposed to be protected by law? For example, gay people aren’t a majority group, yet they can be homosexual people wherever they go. I have no problem with that but at the same time I find, I cannot be a smoker INSIDE a pub/cafe anymore.
    Surely our ‘freedom-lover’ will remember that HIV first showed up in the gay community and bi-sexuals have aided the transfer of this virus to the heterosexual community. (The gay community did recognize the threat and acted; we, the heterosexual community, initially saw this virus as a gay disease and pretty much ignored it!)

    Passive smoke is harmless. But I am, as a smoker, am BANNED from smoking inside a pub/cafe. Explain. (Do not exceed the limit of 200 words)

    In fact, he’s probably the sort of creep who would never have tried a cigarette in the first place unless someone had sat on his chest and forcibly stuck one in his mouth. Same probably applied with beer and spirits. I bet he never learned to ride a bicycle either. Or roller-skate. Or climb trees. Or swim.

    I don’t think he has the guts to try……. elf’n’safety…….
    (Just a thought; what if he likes female company? If he did he’d keep his local GUM clinic afloat. Naw…. he’ll just walk past his front door……………. )

    Perhaps we should tell this ‘freedom-lover’ that life kills. It has a 100% death rate.
    As my son always points out; DEAL WITH IT!!!

    • RdM says:

      “Here in England I pay £15 for 50 gr. of tobacco (approx. £13 are TAX)

      15.00 GBP = 28.9708 NZD
      http://www.xe.com/currencyconverter/convert/?Amount=15&From=GBP&To=NZD

      Here in New Zealand at time of writing, 50g of Drum, say, is, approx double this, around $56 or more NZD.

      Pipe tobacco is up around $65 for remaining tins, not much variety left.

      I’m hanging in to remaining stocks of Domingo from a small importer, already almost all gone, just down to to the unpopular vanilla & cherry flavoureds now; I enjoyed the Dark (Negro) and Virginia Blend, a litle less Original (sort of like Drum) for ~ $40 for 40g …

      Golden Virginia, Samson, Van Nelle, all long gone, no longer imported…

      It’s rediculously now more expensive than silver …

      http://silverprice.org/silver-price-per-kilo.html

      • RD, I would think that at those prices the “grow your own” movement would be taking off like wildfire! No?

        Rob, actually there’s a followup to that story… something titled “The Prowler in the City at the Edge of the World.” also by Robert Bloch.

        - MJM
        P.S. If there are any younger sci-fi fans out there who have NOT read “Dangerous Visions,” get a copy! When you’re reading “From The Government Printing Office” think about the Nannies today…

  7. Beobrigette, here in the US, I get a pound of “pipe” tobacco (actually almost indistinguishable from cigarette tobacco — a byproduct of Obama’s SCHIP tax) for $15. That would be… hmmm.. about two pounds for a hundred grams?

    And then the governments wonder why normally law-abiding citizens are so willing to disrespect the laws regarding smuggling?

    – MJM

    P.S. Re asbestos in safe levels: check how much is allowed in your tap water. Ask the government and they’ll reassure you it’s only carcinogenic if inhaled. When you ask them about the water droplets in showers they suddenly go silent on you.

    • beobrigitte says:

      I’m still on my stash of 3.20 Euro/40gr. tobacco. Supplied by non-smoking friends and family. :)

      • RdM says:

        3.20 EUR = 5.30874 NZD
        That would be nice;- instead of ~$40 NZD!

        It’s approximately doubled (and more) since I visited Germany in 2004, when 50g Drum (or etc.) was exactly $25 NZD here (and only approx $25 for a 5-pack duty-free in Munich, returning) and similar 50g maybe ~ 5 Euros retail there as I remember… less?

        Much greater variety too.

        And there are madly more 10% per year price rises leglislated to come!

    • beobrigitte says:

      That would be… hmmm.. about two pounds for a hundred grams?

      THAT gets my attention!!!!! Best deal I’ve seen in ages!

      • Actually, when SCHIP was coming in here about 5 years ago, the “pipe tobacco” work-around was unknown and I was very unhappy with giving the government so much blood money for tobacco. So I bought about 40 pounds wholesale for 6.38gbp/16oz That’d be… hmm… 1.4 pounds per hundred grams, or 14 pounds per kilo! Your current price is about 280/kilo?

        You see, that’s not taxation any more when it reaches that level: it’s simple robbery, and as such it should be accorded no more respect than you would give a mugger in a dark alley.

        - MJM

    • beobrigitte says:

      Re asbestos in safe levels: check how much is allowed in your tap water. Ask the government and they’ll reassure you it’s only carcinogenic if inhaled. When you ask them about the water droplets in showers they suddenly go silent on you.

      They sure do!!!! In my frenzy of revamping my home I encountered my plumbers refusing to remove asbestos around a now redundant pipe. I did mention water supply and got pretty much the same reaction as you did. I did tell them that I drink my tap water and shower daily. Surely I must be inhaling loads of droplets.

      *silence* (I took a hammer to that asbestos coated pipe myself… Sorted. Before I start being afraid of my shadow I’ll sign myself in at dignitas in Switzerland. But that is still centuries away….

      • Actually, the Antismokers shoot down their own ETS stats when they start talking about how nonsmokers have to keep running home to take showers. If there *IS* any real correlation between ETS exposure and LC, it’s *very* possible that its entirety could be accounted for by crazy Antismokers taking too many showers to get rid of the “stink.”

        Seriously.

        - MJM

  8. Marie says:

    “The law has moved on, and now favours the majority, who do not smoke, and controls the places, where smokers can smoke”
    Here’s an important point. The efforts to get people to stop smoking, has in fact been a matter of reducing the number of smokers to a minority, so to gain power over them. It’s probably what politics is about, to get a majority and so to get power. The same in war.

    • waltc says:

      Exactly what they did with marijuana in the US before they made it illegal, Propagandized against it, scaring the b-jesus out of the majority, until it was (said to be) smoked only by the pre-hated and feared Mexican immigrants, and then they criminalized it getting a double bang by also being freer to persecute Mexicans. At least that’s what I recall is the gist of this informative article whose link I’m posing w/o rereading it;
      http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1994/08/reefer-madness/3476/

    • Oddly enough, I was one of those rare kids who TRULY did not like cigarette smoke. I know how rare that sort of thing was because I was so alone in that feeling!

      There’s some interesting research and reading out there about the development of “disgust” attitudes in children and how they are taught to find things unpleasant or disgusting while growing up. Some of that teaching is good and necessary and intended for their protection, and some of it is passed on unintentionally. The Antismokers of course go out of their way to inculcate their children with disgust and fear and hatred aimed toward smokers — THAT is “child abuse” more than simply smoking in a room with children is since it has a true impact on the remainder of their lives.

      - MJM

      • Marie says:

        Yes, that is very odd, Michael. ;)
        I feel sure, that for me it was because nobody taught me to not like it or even to be aware of it. As you know, my non smoking mom still loves the smell of smoke. I wish, I could ad a picture of me and my granddad smoking a cigar. But it is on my facebook profile.

  9. Rob F says:

    Mike, I found a link to that story to that story you mentioned
    http://hermiene.net/short-stories/toy_for_juliette.html

    I’m reading it now…

  10. Rob F says:

    Sorry about the extra ‘that story’ in the above post.

    And yes, I probably am being a bit anal in pointing it out!

  11. harleyrider1978 says:

    ROYAL BIRTH forth comming today I hear…………………Happy day for all!

  12. smokingscot says:

    Aha, John Redwood.

    He’s the one who tried – twice – to become leader of the Tory party. Once when he tried to unseat John Major (and got whupped). Then after Major’s defeat at the general election in 97 he lost out to Wee Willie Hague. How terribly embarrassing.

    In fact Redwood once described himself as a stalking horse, which means he’s very good at spoiling things for the electable.

    This popular freedom loving dinosaur opposed attempts to reduce the age of consent for homosexuality in both 1994 and 1999.

    However he came to politics from banking and he’s covering his bases. He’s still employed by N M Rothchilds:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Redwood

    However he’s 100% straight, though this business of family values is a problem for him (as it is with several MP’s). Big bust up with first wife, five years with no. 2, now he’s shacked up with Susan Precious (no that is not me extracting the michael). Not bad for a 62 year old.

    Looked at the post. He’s testing the waters. The stuff he’s refused to publish will confirm that UKIP is a very real threat.

    Frank’s description fits. Dinosaurs were indeed reptiles.

    • nisakiman says:

      He’s testing the waters. The stuff he’s refused to publish will confirm that UKIP is a very real threat.

      That is a very perspicacious analysis, SS, and I think you may well be right. The smoking aspect is just a red herring, and the unpublished posts were probably all giving information (that he doesn’t think the drones should see) in a thoroughly concise and verifiable way. It wouldn’t do to have too many people investigating the antis claims too closely. That could really upset the apple cart.

  13. james higham says:

    Saw the title, Frank and had to come in – thought you might have been referring to me. No matter. But it’s an apt description for the bansturbator.

  14. magnetic01 says:

    There’s a useful summary of iatrogenic effect at freedom2choose that can be used as a reference:
    http://f2cscotland.blogspot.com.au/2013/07/dangers-to-life-and-public-health-lobby.html

  15. nisakiman says:

    There is an article in Time Magazine which is basically just a re-post of this recent article by Bayer and Bachynski, two antis who have woken up to the fact that the ever more outlandish claims of Tobacco Control are devaluing their product. The ‘Time’ article itself is of no great interest (the ‘science’ behind outdoor smoking bans), but there are a few comments which are. There doesn’t appear to be any smokers commenting (yet – I will probably add something later when I have time), but there is plenty of opposition from a few non-smokers to the vitriol of the rent-a-gob antis who have posted. Quite heart-warming to see that non-smokers are starting to see through the hyperbole.

  16. harleyrider1978 says:

    Study: Majority supports ban on smoking in cars with kids present
    Updated: Jul 22, 2013 10:43 AM CST

    The vast majority of adults would support a ban on smoking in cars when children are passengers. That’s according to a new survey from the University of Michigan Mott Children’s Hospital.

    82 percent of adult respondents said they’d support a ban in cars carrying kids. Among smokers, support was at 60 percent.

    The poll also found three-quarters of adults favored a ban on smoking in homes where children have asthma or other lung disease.

    NO COMMENTS SECTION ON THIS STORY

    http://www.wthr.com/story/22900809/2013/07/22/study-majority-supports-ban-on-smoking-in-cars-with-kids-present

  17. magnetic01 says:

    Frank, I couldn’t post this comment in the relevant comment thread above, so I’ll post it here. There are two relevant articles at the Arcata Eye. One is Kevin’s article posted a day or so ago (see my link in a previous comment). The other article that Kevin refers to is by Jada Brotman published a few weeks ago:
    http://www.arcataeye.com/2013/07/jada-brotman-the-downtown-smoking-ban-is-wrong-on-so-many-levels/

    I had also posted the same comments on this two-week-old article by Jada Brotman. They were sitting there for a day or so. But our good friend Kev seems to have revisited this older article and snipped out three of my four comments. It’s surprising that he left one of my comments – don’t tell Kev. I’m not sure why my comments came up as “anonymous”. I signed in with Yahoo; there have been no problems in the past.

  18. Pingback: The Iron Fist of Tobacco Control | Frank Davis

  19. Marie says:

    Frank, I wanted to ad a comment to my comment, but placed it at two different wrong places. Please correct this for me!

  20. gold price says:

    While the Academic Senate may think they are acting in the interests of students on this matter, we think the ban is against student freedom. Smoking is unhealthy, but it is a personal choice. We think the current policy protects students from secondhand smoke while not trampling on the liberties of others. While it may not have been 100 percent effective, it did not violate a person’s rights. Anyone who wanted to smoke could do so. Those who did not want to deal with secondhand smoke would not have to in front of buildings, and we had a personal choice to walk away.

  21. Pingback: Some Thoughts on Tobacco Prohibition | Frank Davis

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