That would appear to be the UK government’s aim, judging from what Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has said:
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley told the Times the government did not work with tobacco companies as it wanted them to have “no business” in the UK.
If they are to have “no business” in the UK, then there can’t be any tobacco companies in the UK.
I wonder when the government decided this? I wonder if it asked the British people whether they would like there to be no tobacco sold in the UK, and no tobacco companies?
Well, of course they didn’t ask. This is going to be another government edict.
And since the long term goal is now officially to completely dismantle the UK tobacco industry, it’s really quite academic whether tobacco is displayed or not, or put in plain packages or not, because there isn’t going to be any tobacco on sale anyway.
Simon Clark (again):
“The consultation on plain packaging threatens to be a farce. Andrew Lansley says he is open minded yet he clearly supports plain packaging even before the consultation has begun.”
Well, of course it’s a farce. They’ve made up their minds what they’re going to do, and the “consultation” is a sham. Just like the display ban “consultation” was a sham which ignored the protests of thousands of retailers. You have your “consultation”, and then you go ahead and do what you were going to do anyway.
Incidentally, I left a link to yesterday’s post in a brief comment on Taking Liberties. The blog is moderated these days, and Simon Clark declined to publish my comment.
Anyway, I’m now wondering how the government aims to drive the tobacco companies out of business. Display bans and plain packaging alone won’t do it. But I suppose they can keep pushing up the tax, and adding further regulations to make it more or less impossible to sell tobacco. And maybe require smokers wear
yellow stars brown smoking status indicators. After a while, unable to sell any tobacco, the tobacco companies will be bankrupted.
Why don’t they just make tobacco illegal? Then all of Britain’s 12 million smokers will become criminals overnight, and they’ll need to build
concentration camps holding centres for them.
And if they feel able to drive one perfectly legal business to bankruptcy, then they’ll also feel able to drive any other businesses that fail to conform to their
eugenic master plan public health programme into bankruptcy as well. Alcohol. Chocolate. Tea. Coffee. Sugar. Salt.
And this government calls itself “conservative” and “liberal” and “democratic”. Pah!!!
Meanwhile Pat Nurse reports that Deborah Arnott has been saying:
“…the tobacco industry is “increasingly resorting to the use of front groups and third party advocates” to influence policy outcomes.
“I think they’re trying to enlist supporters to lobby government,” said Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Ash. “Because they can’t get through the door to Number 10 they’re trying to persuade others to do so for them.””
I bet that the likes of someone like me is one of those imaginary “front groups” that has been “enlisted” by the tobacco companies. People can’t do anything on their own initiative these days, it seems. They’ve got to have tobacco company support before they start speaking out against what’s happening to them.
Not to worry, Deborah. The government pays no more attention to us than it does to the tobacco companies – or to anyone else for that matter. It’s not as if we’re living in a democracy any more.