A quote that Walt produced about tobacco prohibition-
“…for this is a real crusade, make no mistake, and the true crusader doesn’t stop at burning the village, killing the women and children and making off with the cattle if that’s what it takes to purify the world.”
– got close to the moral point I was trying to make yesterday: that once Health had become the only thing that mattered, then nothing else – e.g. truth, justice, compassion, etc – could be allowed to matter. It’s why Tobacco Control has no compunction whatsoever in telling lies to get its way, firstly with respect to First Hand Smoking, then with respect to Second Hand Smoking, and then Third, Fourth, Fifth, but perhaps most quickly of all – almost instantaneously in fact – in respect of wholly new and unexpected e-cigarettes. For if telling lies will get people to stop smoking, then the more lies – and the bigger lies – the better.
I recently made the same point to my MP about the prison smoking bans that are being justified entirely on health grounds: all considerations of justice and care and compassion had gone out of the window.
And I think that this might be developed into a powerful moral assault on Tobacco Control, which might push them off the moral high ground that they seem to have captured, and which has allowed them to present themselves as “holier than thou”. Tobacco Control may have got themselves into a moral trap in which they are likely to be crushed as they are increasingly recognised (and condemned) as being devoid of all moral sensibility.
But I think that another moral trap that Tobacco Control may have got themselves into lies in the way that they have demonised firstly tobacco companies – who are invariably portrayed as “merchants of death” -, and now tobacco smokers. For in the tobacco companies they have postulated the existence of a quite satanic organisation of people who are deliberately trying to kill millions of people, by selling them poison. What they don’t quite seem to be realise is that if Big Tobacco is one such satanic organisation, then there can be other satanic organisations, and that once this charge has been laid against Big Tobacco, it is perfectly possible for the same charge to be laid against Tobacco Control. In this manner, the biter may end up getting bit. And since “exile to the outdoors” is tantamount to condemning people to a slow death, it is a charge that Tobacco Control is going to increasingly find itself facing, as the weapon it has cheerfully employed against the tobacco companies begins to be employed against it.
Another thought that I had this morning was that Public Health and Tobacco Control intend to construct a planned society. There are probably – in fact, almost certainly – documents somewhere which set out exactly what that planned society might look like. And it would be one in which there would be no smoking, no drinking, no meat, no fat, no sugar, no salt. It would be a society in which everything would be rationed. Everyone would get the bare minimum of what they needed.
After all, if you plan to grow a million potatoes to feed a million people, then you must also be planning to ration the potatoes, one potato to each person, no more and no less.
And this reminded me that rationing had continued in the UK for nearly 10 years after the end of WW2:
Fourteen years of food rationing in Britain ended at midnight when restrictions on the sale and purchase of meat and bacon were lifted.
Members of the London Housewives’ Association held a special ceremony in London’s Trafalgar Square to mark Derationing Day.
The Minister of Fuel and Power, Geoffrey Lloyd, burned a large replica of a ration book at an open meeting in his constituency.
Health zealots frequently cite the war years as having been the healthiest in Britain’s history, during which the nation had to collectively tighten its belt and Dig For Victory. I’m not quite old enough to remember rationing, but my mother did, and would often talk about how there was hardly any meat or butter or sugar or eggs. Even chocolate and tea was rationed. Although it appears (rather surprisingly) that tobacco was not.
I’m now wondering if this was a time which health zealots look back on nostalgically as a sort of golden age when everyone was wonderfully slim and fit (or perhaps just rather emaciated), and which the Labour party under Clement Attlee – the Planning Party – had wanted to maintain in existence.
The planners, I conjectured, never went away. In fact, their plans for everyone became more and more elaborate and detailed. And now, under the banner of Public Health, they are gradually re-introducing the sort of detailed large scale social planning that was used in Britain during and after WW2, and which took the form of rationing. We are now witnessing the gradual re-introduction of rationing, firstly of tobacco, then alcohol, then sugar, meat, eggs, tea, and all the rest. And there will also be rationing of coal, wood, oil, and electricity as the economy is gradually converted to being “carbon-neutral”, and in which the only source of electrical power will be from wind or solar or tidal farms.
It greatly helped the planners that they were able to introduce their plans during wartime, and it will greatly help them today if a state of war can be arranged to necessitate the introduction of the fully planned society they want. And this is why it’s important for the Russians (or Chinese or North Koreans or ISIS) to be kept as enemies. There needs to be an enemy to justify the need for planning and rationing.
The EU is another example of large scale social planning. We are all supposed to forget that we are British or French or German or Spanish, just as we are to learn to stop smoking and drinking and eating meat. We are to become teetotal Europeans.
And I’m not sure that planning and rationing is necessarily politically socialistic. For it might be said that these days more or less the entire political class has signed up to the idea of planned, organised society. We are, as it were, all planners now. And there are just as many Conservative and Liberal planners as there ever were Labour planners. There are just slightly different flavours of planning.
But a planned society, of whatever political flavour, must always be the antithesis of a free society. For all planning requires the end of freedom of every kind. People cannot be allowed to do what they like if what they do (and what they are to like) has been carefully planned for them.