Tobacco Control see their antismoking mission as something holy, and comparable to Jesus driving the moneylenders from the temple, only a notch or two holier than that. Ridding the world of tobacco is like ridding the world of moneylenders, or prostitution, or slavery. Or maybe moneylenders and prostitution and slavery. There can be no greater task, no nobler cause.
For them tobacco has become the quintessence of evil, and they have become the holy warriors who act to eradicate it.
But instead of seeing them as good, I see them as evil. And as themselves being something like the quintessence of evil that they regard themselves as so nobly fighting against. For I think that more or less all the ills they lay at the door of tobacco are illusory. I don’t think smoking causes lung cancer. Or heart disease. Or anything else. And I think that all the ‘science’ that they use to support these claims is bogus. I don’t think firsthand smoke is in the least bit dangerous. And I don’t think secondhand smoke is in the least bit dangerous. And I don’t think thirdhand smoke is in the least bit dangerous. And I don’t think tobacco smoke stinks either. I reject everything they say. It’s not tobacco that’s evil: it’s them.
And I think they’re lying. And I think they’re lying to themselves as well. They’ve managed to convince themselves that all the money that they extract from smokers is more than justified by the tremendous amount of good they are doing. They engage in a colossal swindle, yet portray themselves as benefiting humanity.
To me that seems like a band of pickpockets claiming that they’re actually helping their victims, and improving the quality of their lives, by relieving them of the intolerable burden of their wallets, and the money in them to which they are so ‘addicted’.
I don’t think they’re doing any good at all. In fact, I think that they’re doing an enormous amount of harm. They’re destroying communities, shattering friendships, bankrupting pubs and cafes, depressing the economy, and creating a pariah class of excluded smokers.
And they think that’s good?
I think it’s wholly evil. I think it’s a crime what they’re committing. A terrible crime.
And I think that the primary task for smokers, and for anyone who loves truth, is going to be one of removing the haloes from the heads of the antismokers, and replacing them with horns. So rather than smoking and tobacco being demonised, it will be antismokers and their smoking bans. And the hunters will become the hunted.
Their fate will be like that of Bernie Madoff (to whom they are very comparable). They will go – perhaps almost overnight – from being respected pillars of society to being reviled criminals and outcasts. For theirs also is a sort of ponzi scheme, whereby they attract investment from government and industry with the promise of substantial health benefits which never materialise. They are snake oil salesmen. They are swindlers. And one day the scales will fall from everyone’s eyes, and everyone will be profoundly shocked and dismayed at having been duped for so long by people who seemed so respectable, and counted eminent doctors and knights and lords among their numbers.
After all, for years before Madoff was caught, there were quite a few hard-headed people who’d figured out that he was running a scam, and who even provided the Securities and Exchange Commission with evidence for it. And eventually, the SEC stepped in and started investigating. And that was the end of him.
It’s like that now with Tobacco Control. They’re heading for the same fall. There are those few of us who can see the dishonesty and mendacity and enormous damage for which Tobacco Control is responsible, and there are the many others who still see them as engaged upon something wholly benign and noble and necessary. In time, the former are going to outnumber the latter.
I can see a time coming when it will be perfectly well accepted (as at present it is not) by everybody in the media, and by all political parties, that Tobacco Control’s predations have done a colossal amount of social and economic damage all over the world. There’ll be a great deal of breast-beating about how it was that none of them could see it until it was staring them in the face. People will wonder how the antismoking zealots managed to get away with outright fraud and deceit for so long. And it will be a change which will come rather suddenly – a tipping point -, when Tobacco Control make the transition from angelic to demonic, from white to black.
It will be a kind of sweet revenge to see the demonisers demonised. And it will also perhaps be something inevitable. For when anyone sets out to demonise millions of their fellow humans, there’s a certain inevitability that they in turn will be demonised, as it comes back to haunt them. Anyone who sets themselves up above their fellows, as purer or nobler or wiser, is heading for a fall in which they will be revealed as being anything but pure or noble or wise. Because nobody’s ever that good.
Tobacco Control is a cancer upon society, and one day it will be seen as that by everybody.
I sometimes think that the historical Nazis – of whom I see Tobacco Control as a linear descendant – suffered the same fate. I don’t think the Nazis ever saw themselves as evil. I think they saw themselves as wholly good and modern and ‘progressive’, and ridding the world of Jews just like Tobacco Control is now ridding the world of smokers. This was the Nazi’s ‘noble mission’, their particular holy war. And it seems that they felt that they could do no wrong. And they had lots of supporters all around the world. But then one day the mask slipped, and the full horror of what they had been doing dawned on everyone, and what had once seemed so noble came to look utterly depraved and inhuman. And after that they became and remained outcasts, hunted all over the world.
I think that history will record Tobacco Control in much the same way. Not as something good or modern or progressive, but instead as something evil and mediaeval and regressive, which somehow – just like Nazism – gained traction and power and influence, and became a monster trampling on millions of lives, until once again it was resisted and then defeated, and it dawned on everyone how sick and depraved their cause had been.
Perhaps history simply repeats itself over and over again, pride coming before a fall, again and again and again.