Tobacco Control must be crazy.

That’s what I thought today.

I’ve been slowly reading a History of Rome for the past few weeks. I’ve got past the point where the expanding Roman empire united Italy, and acquired Sicily and Sardinia and most of Spain, and I’ve arrived at Rome’s intervention in Greece against first Philip V of Macedon, and then the Seleucid Antiochus III. The Romans were invited into Greece by Greek cities, and when they’d driven out Philip and Antiochus they handed Greece back to the Greeks. Rome proceeded by making alliances and keeping to them. And even though it ended up with an empire that surrounded the Mediterranean, it didn’t simply declare war on everyone and fight everyone. If it had done so, it would have been crushed by an alliance of all the other countries.

But Tobacco Control, after slowly and painstakingly building its reputation and influence over 50 years – a bit like early Rome – has declared war on everybody. They’ve declared war on the 1 – 2 billion smokers in the world, and on all their non-smoking friends too. They’ve declared war on pretty much half the world.

Up until that point, they were just fighting the tobacco companies, and doing very well out of it. They’d built up a highly profitable industry. But over the past 10 or 15 years, they seem to have decided that they’re invincible, and that they can take on anyone and everyone.

But I think they’ve gone crazy. Because by launching a war on smokers, to expel them from society, and make them unemployable outcasts, they’ve multiplied the numbers of their enemies a thousand-fold, if not more.

It’s true that they are politically very powerful. They seem to have all the politicians everywhere on side, and all the mass media, and all the pundits. They have a seemingly inexhaustible supply of funds from taxation. They’ve even managed to get smokers to fund the war that’s being waged on them.

It’s also true that smokers are pretty thoroughly disorganised, and also pretty thoroughly demoralised as well.

Maybe Tobacco Control’s strategists decided that they now held all the cards they needed to hold, and it was just a matter of grinding smokers to dust, and make history of smoking forever.

But there’s nothing like a ferocious attack on people to bring them together and concentrate their minds. And that’s what’s happening with smokers all over the world.

It shouldn’t be a surprise, because it’s what always happens when people anywhere come under attack. There’s an initial period of panic, but then the resistance starts to mount. It doesn’t matter who’s being attacked, they will resist. If you declare war on India, the Indians will fight you. If you declare war on China, the Chinese will fight you. If you declare war on Islam, then Muslims will fight you. And if you declare war on smokers, then smokers will fight you.

There are about 1.6 billion Muslims in the world. That’s probably somewhere around the number of smokers in the world. Tobacco Control may as well have declared war on Islam. Or China. Or India. And you could be pretty sure that if they did that, they’d lose the war, because they would have bitten off a bit more than they could chew.

And that’s why they’re going to lose their war on smokers.

Because smokers haven’t really got started yet.

And when they do, they’re going to annihilate Tobacco Control. It will cease to exist. And all the foundations and industries which nowadays gladly fund it will cease to exist too.

Tobacco Control has awakened a sleeping giant. They’ve sown the wind. And they will reap the whirlwind.

And there’s no way back. They’ve burnt their bridges. Once they had embarked on a course of vilifying and demonising and excluding some 1 – 2 billion people in the world, it was never going to be possible to return to the status quo ante, and call a halt to the war, and claim that it was all an accident and they didn’t really mean it.

Tobacco Control has launched a war of extermination on smokers, and it’s a war in which there can be no compromise, no peace, until one side or the other has triumphed, and there are either no more smokers in the world, or there is no more Tobacco Control. It’s one or the other. Peaceful co-existence is impossible now. Tobacco Control always knew that.

That is the path that they have chosen, and that is what they must be held to.

All that matters now is: whose side are you on? If you’re a politician like David Cameron or Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton, or Michael Bloomberg, you’ve already signed up with Tobacco Control. Same if you’re a multi-billionaire like Bill Gates. And if you’re someone like these people, you probably think that smokers and smoking are finished, and that they’re being consigned to history, and the triumphant forces of Tobacco Control really are invincible, and you want to be on the winning side. Maybe you also believe everything that TC tells you about how smokers are no different from heroin addicts, slaves to their addiction, unable to think straight.

If you are, I’d ask you to think again. Smokers are as well-educated and well-off as anyone else. They have all the skills of their enemies. They can do anything. And they just happen to be the latest target of the latest war of extermination. Do you really think that they’re just going to sit and do nothing? When, in the entire course of human history, has any people simply surrendered to apparently overwhelming odds?

Because Tobacco Control may not win its war on the world’s 1 – 2 billion smokers, and if it loses and it is itself annihilated, you’re quite likely to be annihilated too.

But don’t allow me to influence you. I’m just one of those poor, addled, drug-addict smokers. Think it through for yourself. Ask yourself just how powerful Tobacco Control really is, and how easily its power and influence might slip away. They might look pretty invincible today, but will they still look that way tomorrow? Are you quite sure? Ask yourself how many armoured divisions Tobacco Control can field. Ask yourself how many volunteers it can expect to call on to fight its war on smokers. Ask yourself how intelligent and far-sighted and flexible Tobacco Control is. Ask yourself whether it might not have bitten off more than it can chew. Ask yourself when was the last time any drug was successfully eradicated.  Ask yourself whose side you want to be on when Tobacco Control’s headquarters has been razed to the ground, and there are wanted posters on the streets for the top people in it.

Nervous? Then hedge your bets a little. Sit on the fence a bit. Keep your options open. When Tobacco Control next comes round on a fundraiser, tell them that you’ve given all that you possess to save the threatened horseshoe crabs of the Northern Atlantic, or the extinct budgerigars of South America, or the bankrupt spaghetti farms in Italy. Tell them to come back next year. Or the year after. And buy a few people a few packs of cigarettes. Engage in diplomacy, just like the Romans did. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

And when you’re sitting in a bar in Bulgaria or Budapest or Bolivia, and someone asks you what you think of Tobacco Control and its war on smokers, you can just stir your coffee thoughtfully and say:

“Tobacco Control must be crazy.”


About Frank Davis

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Crazy

  1. Frank tobacco control is a paper tiger in its most essential form. It appears to the casual observer to be huge and powerful, but actually it is only able to give that appearance because it has so much money behind. Take away that money and the appearance disappears… And along with the disappearance of the money and the appearance comes the disappearance of the power.

    How can we make that money disappear? I don’t really know. I hope that by continually showing how dirty their underwear is that more and more people will become disgusted with them as they see through their lies. As that disgust grows, the willingness of the people in power to give more and more money to tobacco control should shrink. our job is to just continue with our efforts to expose the lies that their work is based on. The more that we expose, the weaker they will become.

    – MJM

    • Reinhold says:

      Well said, MJM.

    • Frank Davis says:

      I have no doubt that it’s a paper tiger. All the more reason why anyone who has an iota of common sense (and one might have thought that a smart businessman like Bill Gates had a little bit of that) to hesitate before throwing in their lot with Tobacco Control. It may well turn out to be the worst decision he ever made.

      • Reinhold says:

        an iota of common sense (and one might have thought that a smart businessman like Bill Gates had a little bit of that)

        Errare humanum est.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        Frank Bill gates is the chosen billionaire to go out and beg all the other rich bastards to give their money to charity. It seems the stock crash wiped out much of these non-profits money/endowments and need new blood money to stay alive for the next 100 years until they attack us again! You can google Gates on his mission to china where he begged non stop to any rich chinaman who would listen……

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      TC isnt as protected as many may think,it started back in june with the HHS IG investigating lobbying activities with federal grant moneys from HHS,CDC and others. Now it appears the states are getting involved as they search for hard cash to balance their deficits……Heres the first state Ive found doing just that investigating but thye have a bit of protection if you read the story.

      Audit: Colorado Used Tobacco Taxes For Smoking Bans

      DENVER (AP) – Auditors on Monday questioned whether Colorado health officials are following the law by giving money from tobacco taxes to help local initiatives barring smoking in public beyond what’s already prohibited by state law.

      State law already prohibits smoking inside most public places. The Colorado Department of Health and Environment awarded $5.2 million to 140 grantees in 2010 and 2011 to help pass local policies that ban smoking in other locations like restaurant patios, cigar bars, or housing complexes where low-income people live.

      The funds come from a voter-approved constitutional amendment that increased taxes on tobacco in 2005, with the aim of boosting prevention and cessation programs. The auditors said it’s unclear whether state law allows grant money to fund policy initiatives.

      The auditors recommended that the department ask for a legal opinion from the state attorney general. But Dr. Chris Urbina, the department’s executive director and chief medical officer, disagreed with the recommendation and said officials were using the money appropriately.

      • harleyrider1978 says:

        Some of our friends have already hit the comments so no need for me to nail em:

        smokedbacon • a day ago
        Flag as inappropriateTalk about lobbying with tax dollars? Try this one!
        Corr’s appointment has been criticized by conservative publications because he worked as an anti-tobacco lobbyist as recently as September 2008, having been the executive director of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. In response to the criticism, Bill Corr’s spokesman said that in his new job, Corr would recuse himself from tobacco-related issues. Really? Where is Bill Corr at,
        Bill Corr is the Deputy Secretary of the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in President Barack Obama’s administration. What has his department done?
        There are pages and pages (31) of grants issued through the ARRA (American Reinvestment and Recovery Act) for 1) smoking bans, 2) smoke-free campuses, 3) smoke-free housing amounting to BILLIONS OF DOLLARS!!! Here are just a couple! It is ILLEGAL TO USE FEDERAL MONEY (OUR TAX DOLLARS) TO LOBBY FOR LEGISLATION.
        LOS ANGELES, COUNTY OF $16,184,860 1U58DP002543-01 Implement a coordinated community action plan comprised seven interventions, including multi faceted media campaign, comprehensive smoke free outdoor air policies, smoke free multi unit housing policies, point of purchase marketing restriction, cigarette butt litter free policies, a policy and smoking cessation initiative targeting schools, and smoking cessation initiative targeting social service agencies.
        MONTANA $396,744 1U58DP002592-01 Helena
        Tobacco: In Tobacco the objectives are to pass smoke-free policy in three public housing authorities, have 25% of all other rent-restricted, multi-unit housing governed by comprehensive smoke-free policies, and have two communities adopt incentive policies for builders, owners, and managers who receive rent-restricted housing construction money if they adopt comprehensive smoke-free policiessounds like bribery as well!

        Alabama $6,972,663 Birmingham
        Jefferson County Department of Health, Alabama $13.3 Million (Obesity $6.3 Million, Tobacco $7 Million) Jefferson County’s tobacco use prevention and cessation initiative will promote changes in policies to reduce smoking opportunities and reduce access to tobacco products. The county will encourage coverage of cessation services and products through worksite insurance and health policies. The county will also continue its efforts to highlight the negative aspects of tobacco use via an aggressive educational campaign including social networking sites.

        • harleyrider1978 says:

          Ya we got TC on the defensive now and who knows we may even get some federal indictments before long! We can always hope

  2. Reinhold says:

    OT. Don’t know if it’s been posted here already. Sorry if it is.
    But it’s too heartening to be missed (H/T to xila):

    “I am a smoker, very proud of being one, I don’t want to quit smoking, I love to smoke, I will remain a smoker all my life, I don’t have any plan of quitting, just to start with… ”
    Marjane Satrapi

      • Would have thought Helmut Schmidt was a better one to quote.

      • Messalina says:

        @ Reinhold – Thanks for the link to that article. I enjoyed Marjane Satrapi’s film ‘Persepolis’ and her graphic novels. I look forward to seeing her latest film. She grew up in Iran during the revolution and the Khomeini regime and she’s written some great graphic novels about her experience. She’s my kind of person! I’ve seen her on interviews and she has a very lovely personality. In ‘Persepolis’ she always portrays herself smoking.

    • Margo says:

      That’s lovely, Reinhold. She’s my kind of person and that’s my kind of film. I love the bit in the interview where she compares Lauren Bacall with Jennifer Aniston etc – that is what TC wants to do, turn the Lauren Bacalls of the world into Jennifer Aniston. They are so boring, boring, they have no subtlety and don’t know the meaning of the word.

      • Frank Davis says:

        Oh, I don’t know… Lauren Bacall was something special in those Bogart movies. But so is Jennifer Aniston. I used to watch Friends just to see her (a bit like I used to watch Cheers to catch a glimpse of Kirstie Alley, and the Avengers to see Diana Rigg, and Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In for Goldie Hawn, and rhe Dick van Dyke show to… oh never mind), because a) she’s very beautiful, and b) she’s very funny. She’s a great comic actress. I can’t think of anyone quite like her. Not even Kirstie Alley.

    • beobrigitte says:

      Satrapi’s “Persepolis” is brilliant! Glad to read that not only is she a smoker, she is also a proud smoker!

      Looking forward to see “chicken with plums”!

  3. Question … Is there a high profile personality or celebrity that is an unrepentant smoker? We are told that Obama no longer smokes, Cameron supposedly quit and so has Clegg. Yet, is this actually true?

    Then we have all the actors and celebs that smoke but when interviewed say they are quitting or no longer smoke. Even the ones that do say they smoke seem to be apologetic about it.

    Even Whoopi Goldberg for a time was one of these but seems more radical now.

    lt would be heartening to see and hear someone say ” Yes l smoke and before you ask … l have no intention of quitting” … or something like that.

    Sometimes l wish l lived in London because l’d love to go to ASH head office there … and setup a table outside … smoking and giving away free cigarettes! :)

    • smokervoter says:

      In the realm of politics I would say that the two most powerful and unapologetic smokers in the anglosphere world are John Boehner, Speaker of the House and Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP, a fast growing political party in the UK. It is my intense hope that UKIP will garner 10%-20% of the vote by 2015. At a mid-point of even 15%, they will have quintupled their 2010 showing and can not be ignored.

      If the EU self-destructs before then, UKIP may want to move the smoking ban to the top of their agenda.

      Likewise if the Libertarian party in the US were to grow five-fold from its usual showing people would take notice, especially in the case of a whisker short victory by one or other of the majors. The pundits would be all over themselves with the what-ifs. My guess is that the Republicans would embrace the libertarian philosophy more than they did this cycle.

      The Libertarians got 523,686 (0.40%) presidential votes in 2008. If they quintuple this year to a showing of 2.6 million (2%) it might have some impact. Overall I see the UKIP too be in a much stronger position to change things.

      Truth be told, I seldom hear any libertarians nor Ron Paul supporters make any mention of the blatant and obvious assault on personal liberty embodied by tobacco prohibition. For them it’s all about End the Fed and Audit the Fed. I happen to think that Bernanke is a very astute economist who is trying his level best to insure price stability and full (er) employment. What is in it for him to hold sway over a failed economy I ask?

      If the Liberatrians would actively court the angry smoker vote in the future, their measly 2.6 million could grow to 10+ million. They seem blind to that possibility at the present time.

      I won’t be voting for them. I’m going to do whatever it takes to keep John Boehner as the Speaker of the House and any and all Democrats (and RINO’s) out of power.

    • XX Question … Is there a high profile personality or celebrity that is an unrepentant smoker? XX

      Certainly. Helmut Schmidt.

      • beobrigitte says:

        True, Furor. Helmut Schmidt is both – and the German anti-smokers can vouch for him being an unrepentant smoker!!! It is always refreshing to read about him and to watch the countless interviews on youtube.

        The anti-smokers hate his zest for life as well; at the tender age of 93 years old, having been a widower (his wife Loki, to whom he was married for 68 years died 2 years ago at the age of 89), he also found a new lady friend recently. I can’t remember her name, but I do remember that she is a great deal younger (78 years old) and a smoker.

    • Alissa says:

      Because by launching a war on smokers, to expel them from society, … It’s true that they are politically very powerful. … Because smokers haven’t really got started yet. ….. Is there a high profile personality or celebrity that is an unrepentant … no longer smokes, Cameron supposedly quit and so has Clegg.

  4. Jay says:

    I think that the way to get under the skin of politicians is to hold them up to ridicule. TC is becoming more ridiculous by the day and, by association, politicians who support it. We just need to keep getting the message out to a wider audience. When politicians realise that Joe down the pub thinks that SHS is nonsense they’ll start to distance themselves from TC.

    • I’ve long thought mockery is our most powerful weapon. Laughing at the faux coughers and the finger waggers, poking fun at the pseudo-science and at the Nanny-Emperor’s unclothed arse, persistently, individually, draws the teeth of their disapproval and their authority. Make them the butt of the joke. I think that was in part the cause of the tobaccotactics blog farce – they hate being mocked and derided. They need to be feared, to be seen as awe-inspiring and terribly important. None of us do. We just want to be left alone. And refusing to grant them even a serious hearing, just a chorus of cat calls and boos and jeering, seems to their only just desserts.

      • garyk30 says:

        “Make them the butt of the joke. I think that was in part the cause of the tobaccotactics blog farce – they hate being mocked and derided.”


        Here is a lovely way to do just that.

        For decades TC antis have wrapped themselves in the self-righteous cloak of condemning and hating smoking and smokers.

        They have gone to great lenghts to portray the horrible deaths that smokers
        They seem to believe, with religeous fevor, that those horrible deaths are only to happen to those poor addicted smokers.

        Smokers, not they, are the ones being stalked by the ‘Grim Reaper of Death From the Smoking Caused Diseases’.

        This ‘Grim Reaper’ will cut down smokers in vast swaths and numbers.

        The antis, in their deluded minds, are convinced that if the smokers had never smoked or would quit; then, they would avoid or have avoided that wanton,senseless, and savage butchery.

        Here is the fact that I find VERY amusing and hilarious.

        Doll’s doctor study shows that they , the ex-smokers, and smokers have the same probabitiy of falling to that ‘Grim Reaper’ and suffering those cruel deaths.

        That study shows the following:
        85% of current smokers died from those diseases ’caused’ by smoking

        85% of ex-smokers died from those diseases ’caused’ by smoking

        84% of the never-smokers died from those diseases ’caused’ by smoking

        The TC antis are just as likely to have to suffer from the ravages and deaths of the diseases they claim are ’caused’ by smoking.

        ALL of the terrible things that they claim will happen to smokers will happen to them in equal proportions.

        For every 101 smokers that die from the diseases of smoking, there will be 101 ex-smokers that will die and 100 never-smokers that will die those same deaths.

        Smokers and never-smokers have almost exactly the same chances of NOT DYING from those diseases ’caused’ by smoking.

        For every 1 smoker that does not die from those diseases, there will ONLY be 1.07 never-smokers that do not die from those diseases.

        Why use Doll’s doctors study?

        Sir R. Doll MD is a ‘God’ to the TC movement.

        The doctors study is the gold standard of such studies.
        It is a well documented 50 year long study of the mortality of 30,000+ British doctors with regard to their smoking habits.

        Of course, no where in that study will you find the conclusions that I have listed above. What a surprise!!!

        But, data can be shown in different ways to show various views.

        I think that Doll’s view is like looking at the rear end of the elephant that is in the room,

        I prefer to go to the front end of the elephant for my view.

  5. harleyrider1978 says:

    Prohibition returns
    Written by Chris Snowdon | Wednesday 29 August 2012

  6. garyk30 says:

    More news to terrorize the TC antis.

    Let’s allow the American College of Chest Physicians to have a say.

    As announced in October of 2003, this group of highly knowledgeable and skilled doctors use the lungs of smokers for transplants to patients who needed them to expand the list of available donors.

    This more than doubled the number of transplants done.

    If the TC antis get a lung transplant, there is better than 50% chance they will get the lungs of a dead smokers!!!!

    Smokers’ heart are also used in heart transplants.

    Smokers. in untold numbers, are blood donors.

    If a TC anti needs a blood transfusion, there is a very good chance that the blood will have come from a smoker!!!

    The next time that you hear a TC anti ranting about how diseased and unhealthy smokers are, you, with a big smile, can remind them of the above truths!!! :)

    • garyk30 says:

      Don’t forget to mention the tranplantation of the livers and kidneys of those dead diseased and unhealthy smokers!!!

      Just keep rattling their cages.

      This could be a LOT of fun.

    • truckerlyn says:

      This is one of the reasons I will NEVER be an organ donor nor a blood donor! If I, as a smoker, can be so willfully discriminated against, then why should I give my organs or blood to those who would discriminate against me?

      Now, if I could 110% guarantee that my organs and blood were to go ONLY to smokers, then I might reconsider, but as I would be 150% sceptical should any such guarantee be given, then it ain’t gonna happen!

  7. harleyrider1978 says:

    Well Frank even Clegg is admitting shits fixing to hit the fan!
    ” and needs to tax the rich in order to avoid social unrest.”

    Emergency’ Tax on the Rich Roils Britain

    As part of the global push to tax the rich, Britain is now debating an “emergency” wealth tax. But the idea has hit fierce opposition from conservatives, who say the “politics of envy” hasn’t made the country rich.

    Deputy Prime Minster Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal-Democrat Party, has proposed a one-time tax on the wealth (rather than the incomes) of high-net-worth Britons. The details aren’t clear, but Clegg says the country is facing an economic war caused by a prolonged recession, and needs to tax the rich in order to avoid social unrest.

    He told the Guardian that unless the country “hardwired fairness” into the budget, “I don’t think the process will be either socially or politically sustainable or acceptable.”

  8. harleyrider1978 says:
  9. truckerlyn says:

    Here is a response from HM Treasury on views I made regarding Vehicle Exise Duty (VED), Minimum Pricing on Alcohol and Tobacco Tax. I am having to type response here as letter is in pdf format and I am unable to copy it. My points are in brackets)
    “You mention that new vehicles carry a lower VED (my point on taxing higher those who can least afford it). The CO2 based VED structure includes 13 tax bands that differentiate between the most and least fuel efficient cars (obviously the most fuel efficient are the newest that the lower paid cannot afford). This includes a peak rates exemption for cars registered before 23 March 2006 that emit CO2 at over 225g/km. All cars are measured in the same way and this helps to highlight lower CO2 and fuel saving choices across all types and classes of car (not allowing for the fact that some of us need bigger cars for various reasons, such as both hubby and self due to back problems where getting in and out of small cars is a problem).
    Alexander Dixon from HM Treasury went on to point out how generous the government have been with regard to delaying fuel duty increases, on top of having (apparently) cut fuel duty and cancelling the previous government’s pre-announced increases.
    You mention plans for a minimum unit price for alcohol, which were highlighted in the recent Alcohol Stratgy. Those who drink responsibly have nothing to fear from this proposal(!!!), We do not expect the majority of drinks in pubs to be affected, only heavily discounted acohol sold in supermarkets, off-licences and ‘happy hour’ type offers (so this will not affect those who drink responsibly? Again, it will be the lower paid who WILL suffer, however much or little they drink!). This approach aims to reduce excessive alcohol consumption and curb practices such as ‘pre-loading’ before a night out. The government will publish a consultation on the level of the minimum unit price later this year (like that will make a differnece to what they decide), and I would encourage you to response to the consultation with your concerns. The Alcohol Strategy can be found online at:
    You argue that tobacco taxation does not encourage people to give up smoking. The government, like previous governments, has a policy of establishing and maintaining high levels of taxes on cigarettes as this has been proven to reduce smoking prevalence (Ha, Ha!), and is acknowledged to be very effective in encouraging smokers to quit and discourage young people from taking up smoking (that’s really worked well then, hasn’t it?).
    Tobacco duty is also an important contributor to the public finances, forming part of a credible plan to reduce the UK’s debt, which is required to ensure low interest rates and a stable platform for growth. It would be worse for everyone if the government did not take action to tackle the deficit (so, they really cannot afford for people to quit smoking or for youngsters not to start, can they!).”
    End of reply. Anyone else want to write to their MP or HM Treasury on any of the above points? Could keep them busy for a while, although I suspect you will all get the same PC response.

    Note the penultimate paragraph, where it is admitted that Tobacco duty is an important contributor to the public finances!! Just imagine how much more they would get in their grubby little coffers if the tax were not so high and just the people who currently smoke ALL bought their tobacco products in the UK instead of in Europe! These grubby little politicians never could see further than the end of their noses!

No need to log in

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.