Trump appealed to smoker-voters because he was NOT HILLARY. Hillary started off with banning smoking in the White House, but when she moved into government itself and pushed the creation and passage of the SCHIP tax (Any not familiar with it, see Phil Button’s blog ) she sealed her fate. Her antismoking activities, all by themselves, may very well have made the final difference in getting Trump rather than Clinton into the White House.
I think that’s almost certainly true. Hillary Clinton, like Michael Bloomberg, was no friend of smokers. And with smokers making up some 20% of the US adult voting population, that was an awful lot of voters that she had alienated. I’m not an American, but if I had been (or even if I had been an illegal immigrant expected to vote Democrat), I wouldn’t have voted for Hillary. She was completely toxic.
The odd thing about this is that the Clinton campaign was very much targeted towards minorities. Blacks. Women. LGBTQs. Latinos.They had the whole US population divided up into oppressed minorities of one kind or other. But they completely missed Smokers. Smokers just aren’t on their radar. Why’s that? Isn’t it obvious? Isn’t it obvious when smokers are being excluded from almost everywhere, fired from their jobs, refused medical treatment, evicted from their homes. WTF do you need to have done to you to count as an oppressed minority?
I explored the possible effect of smokers on both the shock-horror election of Donald Trump and the shock-horror Brexit vote. It seemed very likely to me that smokers swung both votes: they didn’t want the antismoking Hillary Clinton and they didn’t want the antismoking EU either.
It was no shock to me that Donald Trump got elected. But then, I’m a smoker, and I know what it’s like being excluded and demonised for being a smoker, and I know how smokers are likely to vote. I even placed a bet on Trump’s election, and won. But why were all the pundits and politicians shocked and horrified? Aren’t they the experts who are supposed to know?
But it’s not very surprising that they can’t see the smokervoters. Because nothing is ever reported about them. People will look into the grievances of women, blacks, etc, but they never ever consider the grievances of smokers. There are no reports about it in the media. So smokers can’t have any grievances, can they? If they did, we’d have heard about it, wouldn’t we? And what the heck does it matter to anybody if they can’t light up one of their filthy stinking cigarettes in bars or restaurants any more? It’s trivial. It’s unimportant. It doesn’t matter at all.
But it’s not trivial. And it does matter. It matters a great deal to people to be “exiled to the outdoors”. It’s a new form of segregation. And it has the same profound impacts as any other kind of segregation, like the White-only bars, or Men-only clubs.
I think we’re seeing a form of groupthink going on here. And the groupthink is that there are only a certain number of Officially Designated Permanently Oppressed Minorities, and smokers aren’t on the list. And because they’re not on the list, they can’t be an oppressed minority, can they?
There’s no reporting in the MSM about smokers’ rights or smokers’ grievances. And maybe that will never change. It may be that antismoking lobbyists like ASH simply have far too much influence for smokers to ever get a hearing.
But with the MSM in steep decline, and the internet in growing ascendancy (last month Alex Jones’ Infowars claimed to be getting as much traffic as Fox News or CNN) it may be only via the internet, and small blogs like mine, that the plight of the smokers will enter into public consciousness.
The more smokers there are who publish blogs, or who comment on blogs, or who are otherwise active in spreading the word about smokers, the more likely it will become that people will start to realise that there’s a whole new oppressed minority of people out there: smokers. And now vapers too. Because that’s another piece of oppression.
The change will come one day. One day they’ll find the hidden power of smokers. Some genius polling guru will deduce it one day from a mass of calculations: smokers! Smokers are what’s producing these crazy election results! Why didn’t we see it before?! Milo, tell the Managing Director to come down here immediately! I’ve got something very, very important to tell him. No, it doesn’t matter if he’s having lunch at the 21 Club right now. Tell him to put down his knife and fork and get back here this minute. I’ll buy him another steak another time.
And then you’ll start hearing in the news about smokers.Just a word or two occasionally, and then more and more. There’ll be documentaries done about smokers. They’ll become a brand new Officially Designated Permanently Oppressed Minority. The Archbishop of Canterbury will mention them. So will the Pope. The UN will produce a Charter of Smokers’ Rights.
Can you imagine it?