I wake up every morning thinking about the smoking ban. That shouldn’t surprise anybody: the smoking ban of 1 July 2007 was the occasion of my expulsion from society. I’ve been an outsider ever since that day, both literally and metaphorically. I sit outside pubs on my own now. And I also stand outside the entire society those pubs were part of. I don’t watch TV or listen to the radio. Or if I do, it’s in much the same way that I’ll sometimes watch multiple silent TVs, all tuned to the same station, through the shop window of some department store.
And the same is true, each in their own separate way, for every other smoker in the world. We smokers are all outsiders now. Some of us are just a bit further outside than others.
And today’s first thought of the day was this: I never knew we were hated so much.
I never knew, when I was young, that smokers were hated so much. I never knew that my smoking grandfather and my smoking father and my smoking friends (and now I my smoking self) were all such hated and despised people. I really didn’t.
But in fact smokers weren’t hated at all when I was young. Nobody hated them. Or at least nobody I knew hated them. The only antismokers back then were the long-dead people who wrote the school rules that forbade school pupils from smoking or drinking. I was nearing 20 years of age before I came across my first antismoker: the slightly terrifying Dr W. And I just thought he was a bit mad.
The antismoking mentality is actually a social disease that has been spread by medical doctors like Dr W. And Dr W was a fairly prominent British doctor: the last time I ever saw him was when he appeared on Newsnight standing outside the BMA, speaking on its behalf. The War on Smoking is something that has been launched on the world by the medical profession, which is now completely dominated by antismokers, who regard the habit of smoking to itself be a disease, not much different from typhoid or cholera. The medical profession now devotes itself as assiduously to the task of stamping out smoking as it ever did to stamping out typhoid and cholera.
And it has done this by making people frightened of tobacco smoke, even in the smallest concentrations (e.g. the tobacco smoke coming from the smoker in the house next door). And they’ve been very successful at frightening people. They’ve frightened most smokers into giving up smoking. And they’ve gone on to frighten many non-smokers from even being in the same room as a smoker. And they’ve frightened governments all over the world into enacting ever-extending smoking bans, advertising bans, and ever-more-punitive levels of taxation on tobacco.
And they frightened them all with mathematics. They replaced ordinary common sense – which told people that smoking didn’t kill anybody – with mathematical arguments which told them that in fact smoking killed everybody. In this manner they converted a harmless pastime into the world’s greatest plague, using mathematics that most people couldn’t understand, and couldn’t contest.
It was with this manufactured fear of tobacco smoke that there came the hatred of smokers. The hatred isn’t articulated by the top people in Tobacco Control. It doesn’t come from Deborah Arnott or Linda Bauld or Stanton Glantz. They’re above all that. They leave that to their proxies, writing anonymously in comment threads. Here’s a random snapshot of some of them, from Michael McFadden’s Wall of Hate (I keep a copy in the right margin):
This is what the WHO and the medical establishment have created. It’s their creation. They own it. It never existed before. But they slowly built the monster, piece by piece, and then they unleashed it upon the world.
I think they thought that the wave of fear and hatred that they generated would just sweep all the smokers away, like a tsunami. It’s a terrible thing to do, to millions and millions of people. They probably felt that the end justified the means.
But hatred is a form of energy. And people store it up, just like springs store up energy. Hate someone enough, and you fill them with hatred. And one day it all finds its way back out, as the compressed springs release all their stored energy. It goes back out in the opposite direction it went in.
And smokers just absorb the wall of hate thrown at them. They soak it up. They soak it up every day that they’re standing outside in the rain, where the smoking bans drove them. And they’re slowly saving it up. Slowly saving it all up.
So it’s not too hard to predict what’s going to happen, once the smokers have absorbed enough hatred: they’re going to throw it all right back where it came from. They won’t be able to stop themselves. Tobacco Control will be destroyed. And so will the WHO and the BMA and the RCP and any number of other medical organisations. And so will a whole bunch of fake charities. And a whole bunch of ‘philanthropic’ foundations. And a whole bunch of universities. And a whole bunch of individual people who wasted their lives waging war on smokers. It’s going to be the real tsunami. It’s all going to come right back to them. They’re going to reap what they sowed.