Small Causes and Small Effects

I was thinking this morning that the imposition and revocation of smoking bans (and any number of other things) is the outcome of the interaction of an almost infinite number of political forces. Someone somewhere in the world finds himself in temporary ascent, and someone else in temporary descent. And it’s changing all the time, as small causes have small effects everywhere, all the time.

Tobacco Control’s current global ascendancy seems to be closely related to the ascendancy of the WHO and the UN and lots of other global organisations. And this is a function of globalisation and globalism over the past half century or so. All these outfits have been gradually getting more and more rich and powerful, decade by decade. And as these global organisations have grown in wealth and power and influence, national governments have been gradually losing wealth and power and influence. And all these NGOs have gradually formed, quite naturally, a New World Order, and a globalist culture to go with it, made up of the World Bank, the IMF, UN, WHO, etc, etc, etc. They’ve become the movers and shakers in the world.

I think it works a bit like this: Small Country A wants to build a dam somewhere, and so it goes to the World Bank or IMF or whatever, and asks for a loan, and they’re granted the loan, but there are strings attached. And it would seem that one of the strings attached is that Small Country A should introduce a smoking ban to help the WHO in its global struggle against the “tobacco epidemic”. It’s presented as something no different than trying to stamp out malaria or tuberculosis. It’s about Health, after all. And who is going to argue against health measures.

Add  to this the fact that most politicians in Small Country A don’t smoke, and quite a few of them are fully paid up members of the ascendant New World Order, from which they have been receiving lavish expenses, free holidays, cut price insurance, etc, etc, and they are very quick to agree to the smoking ban in order to get the loan to build the dam.

The only losers are the voiceless minority of all the poor bloody smokers living in Small Country A, who become very resentful at what’s been done to them, and start voting against whichever political party did it to them. The poor bloody smokers look for populist politicians who will speak for them. In this manner popular political parties and movements take shape. And they manage to throw out the old political parties, and replace them with anti-globalist politicians who start to tear up all the secret deals that have been done with the World Bank and the IMF and all the other NGOs in the New World Order.

Now it could well be that when Small Country A evicts its globalist political elite from power, the World Bank and IMF and so on, backed by other countries in the UN, steps in to freeze or revoke the loans for building the dam. Work stops on the half-built dam. And all the perks and expenses associated with it dry up. And perhaps the old globalist elite stage a counter-coup, and re-install the old order.

But I think that Small Country A could be almost any country in the world. In fact, I’d say that Small Country A is every country in the world. Because they’ve nearly all got smoking bans, and they’ve probably all got them for much the same reasons. And so every country in the world has a voiceless minority of poor bloody smokers. And poor bloody drinkers. And poor bloody fat people. They’re all chock full of voiceless minorities who aren’t actually gays or lesbians or blacks or Jews or women, because those were the old voiceless minorities from 50 or 100 years ago who’ve long since gained a voice.

And it’s from out of this global pushback against globalist elites, in every country in the world, that the current upsurge in populism is coming. And it’s a consequence of the neglect of their own people by the global political elite – for example by throwing their smokers under a bus, and making about 1.5 billion enemies for themselves.

So the ground is beginning to give way under the New World Order that has emerged over the past 50 years. The people are fed up with them, and they are fed up with them everywhere.

In addition, all the various smoking bans and rules and regulations (many of them environmental in nature) that have been raining down on every country in the world have resulted in a global recession or slump. And since Small Country A only wanted to build its dam to provide hydroelectric power for industries it had planned to build up, and these industries are all now in recession, it can tell the World Bank that it no longer needs the loan anyway, and tear up the agreements it made with it. And the same will be happening with lots of other Small Countries.

Perhaps it started with Brexit and Trump. But it’s going to carry on happening, and happening everywhere. Populist leaders and parties are popping up everywhere, and growing everywhere. And a global recession is helping it all along. Political power, that had been slowly accumulating in global political institutions for the past 50 years, is beginning to flow back towards the people. And canny politicians who can see which way the wind is blowing will start to buff up their popular credentials, and follow the lead of Nigel Farage in ostentatiously smoking and drinking and growing fat (although Nigel has done the last one yet).

The writing is on the wall for Tobacco Control. They’ve made far too many enemies for themselves. Their hubris was on display in Moscow two years ago. It’s going to be downhill all the way from now on.

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About Frank Davis

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12 Responses to Small Causes and Small Effects

  1. nisakiman says:

    I sincerely hope you’re right, Frank. However, the enforcer for the WHO which is the IMF / World Bank still wields a big stick (or carrot, depending on the country), and there aren’t many nations who can afford to tell them to fuck off.

  2. Timothy Goodacre says:

    If we could only mobilise all the smokers.

  3. beobrigitte says:

    The only losers are the voiceless minority of all the poor bloody smokers living in Small Country A, who become very resentful at what’s been done to them, and start voting against whichever political party did it to them. The poor bloody smokers look for populist politicians who will speak for them.
    True. And I will NEVER vote for Labour again. Or the LibDems (that if that party still exists). Or the Tories. If the next local election falls on a day when I’m in a foul mood, I shall add a fictional party + representative, draw a box and place my tick there.

    In this manner popular political parties and movements take shape. And they manage to throw out the old political parties, and replace them with anti-globalist politicians who start to tear up all the secret deals that have been done with the World Bank and the IMF and all the other NGOs in the New World Order.
    Unfortunately this isn’t going to happen. Neither will be this New World Order. People block out “the world” and gather privately with e.g. alcohol and cigarettes. Also, swapping goods is a good way to avoid money/transfer money via a bank. For example:
    https://www.gumtree.com/swap-shop

    But I think that Small Country A could be almost any country in the world. In fact, I’d say that Small Country A is every country in the world. Because they’ve nearly all got smoking bans, and they’ve probably all got them for much the same reasons. And so every country in the world has a voiceless minority of poor bloody smokers. And poor bloody drinkers. And poor bloody fat people. They’re all chock full of voiceless minorities who aren’t actually gays or lesbians or blacks or Jews or women, because those were the old voiceless minorities from 50 or 100 years ago who’ve long since gained a voice.
    I am a woman who still isn’t treated 100% equal to men and for that I still don’t have been given a voice. And I’m a smoker. Double whammy for me then.
    For clarification: I am an opponent of the ‘women’s lib movement-kind-of-thing’. In my view this ‘movement’ is looking to get the upper hand over men with concurrent ‘safety-measures-in-place’.
    Utter nonsense.
    I am not a libertarian, simply because this places too much responsibility on me. I am an egalitarian.
    And smokers these days are the new Victorian age women. Worse even, smokers are told they are killing other people – please, no tobacco control [fabricated] “evidence” for that. To my knowledge the far and few between independent studies produced a different result. Smokers are NOT being treated as equals. Like the women in the early 1900s we have to dispel idiotic myths in order to be given a voice – AGAIN this time round.

    Timothy Goodacre says:
    April 4, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    If we could only mobilise all the smokers.
    Reply

    garyk30 says:
    April 4, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    Just 10% would be really great.
    10% would be more than sufficient. If I remember correctly the number of women protesting to gain the right to vote at the time was a lot less than that.

  4. Tony says:

    I think there’s room for cautious optimism on the destruction of this ‘New World Order’. It seems Steve Milloy of JunkScience.com was indeed on the EPA transition team. Milloy was a highly vocal critic of the anti-smoking EPA passive smoking fraud until a few years ago when I noticed him commenting that ‘that train has left the station’. But I think that was simply pragmatism given the political climate, in both senses.

    There are concerns about Trump’s appointee Scott Pruitt and his apparent reluctance to withdraw the ‘endangerment finding’ (i.e. the claim that CO2 is a pollutant). But otherwise generally it looks as though the EPA may yet be brought to heel which would open the door to publicly destroying their passive smoking fraud. For good this time.

    He doesn’t mention smoking but does take a strong, uncompromising stance about the nature of science in this recent talk. I fully agree with him:
    Need to scroll forward to 2 hours 55 minutes (for about 20 minutes) https://youtu.be/i_3S1JcFWUA

  5. smokingscot says:

    Certainly there’s considerable dissatisfaction with each and every supranational body. We know they’ve been infused by anti smoking advocates and we know monies are being misappropriated to further the cause of anti smoking.

    End result is inability to do the jobs they were established to do.

    This irritated China to such an extent that they set up the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. It’s a length, dry article, however a couple of quotes gives you the gist.

    “Beijing officials say they want to take a faster approach than their counterparts at the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Asian Development Bank. The new bank, China promises, will not be bogged down in oversight.”

    and

    “The Chinese-led bank will also focus solely on infrastructure. To China, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank failed to deliver on big projects meant to transform backward parts of Asia, resulting in an estimated $8 trillion of needed investment in rails, ports and power plants.”

    I also find it telling that the WHO has come in for great criticism from, of all places, Hong Kong. I say this on account Ms. Margaret Chan is a Hong Kong citizen.

    “We need a World Health Organisation that’s fit for purpose”

    and

    “the WHO should be depoliticised”

    http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/1679569/we-need-world-health-organisation-thats-fit-purpose

    So while I get the underlying message that it is the little countries that are most easy to manipulate, I believe they’re the least capable to tell these bodies to go take a hike.

    However if you’re running a diddly squat country, it’s very helpful indeed to have big mates. And I have been most impressed at the way China has gained enormous influence with write-off countries that our leaders in the “developed” world shun, or are indifferent to. China has taken a completely different view -.and it’s paying off, especially with exports and votes in the UN.

    If places like Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, Sudan and Philippines (to name just a tiny handful), think Beijing’s the dogs dangles, it’s partially because aid from China comes without strings.

    (And it’s Putin’s blind spot as well).

  6. Dmitri says:

    I’m getting ready for an annual conference of top Russian experts on global trends to be hold this weekend, reading all the main presentations distributed in advance. Guess what, most our thinkers are saying that deglobalisation started in 2008 or so. So in general – very general – Frank is in agreement with our best minds, but in particular we all need somebody globally (or antiglobally) prominent, like the Pope, to say that the world needs a total denormalisation of Tobacco Control.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Maybe not the current Pope. He’s a bit of a globalist, I think.

      • Joe L. says:

        Yeah, definitely not this Pope. It’s almost as if he was groomed by and his rise to power was ensured by globalists. Until Pope Francis, globalism clashed with religion, then, all of a sudden, Francis becomes Pope and they’re all in bed together.

        I agree that our movement could use a prominent (anti)global pro-smoking freedom-loving figurehead, but who would that be at the moment? Unless Keith Richards decides to run for some political office, I can’t think of anyone who could fill those shoes.

  7. waltc says:

    I think this began in earnest in individual countries at about the time they faced rising, even skyrocketing, health care costs, especially in countries where the governments paid some share of the costs and, flailing for something –at least something they could influence–to blame for the expense, their ears were ripe to be whispered in by zealots.. Then employers, who also paid insurance premiums, listened to it too. And while it’s true that the Movement was started by a few moralistic cranks, I believe it caught on because of money. After that, it simply took on a life of its own–An Idea Whose Time Had Come– and spread around the world as in Sheldrake’s morphic resonance.

    (Though I’ll have to say that Bloomberg–a moralistic crank who got whispered to by the even crankier Thomas Frieden–played the role of the wandering preacher. After he got his first ban in New York, he traveled to Ireland to successful sell the gospel, and from there, to everywhere–paving the path with money.)

    And we also have to remember that it’s not just smoking; it’s every “lifestyle” token that can somehow vaguely be correlated to Health which can be correlated to Money.

    I’d also say the actual reason for rising costs are advanced technology and (thanks to those advanced but expensive medical interventions) aging populations. But it’s hard to ban technology or tax aging. So–voila!

  8. Clicky says:

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