The word on the grapevine from New York City is that Peter Koo’s proposed regulation for No Smoking While Walking on NYC streets has attracted little or no interest from other councillors. It isn’t going to be enacted.
And the word on the grapevine from Ireland is that James Reilly’s proposed No Smoking While Eating outside Irish restaurants has probably also died the death.
And Bucko has got himself into the Lancashire Telegraph with his FOI discovery that Blackburn and Darwen council was targeting smokers (and pretty much only smokers) with its anti-litter campaign. More about it here and here. Other people are sending in their own FOI requests to the council. Maybe a few smokers in Blackburn and Darwen are beginning to wake up to the fact that their Labour-controlled council doesn’t like deplorables like them.
That sounds like three victories. But I’m not so sure. Tobacco Control is very powerful, and has a vice-like grip on all levels of government everywhere, and in most of the media as well, although obviously not the Lancashire Telegraph.
It seems to me that Tobacco Control has now shifted to getting piecemeal outdoor smoking bans on one pretext or other. And if they don’t succeed first time (like in Stony Stratford) they just move somewhere else, and try again. They never let up. Ever.
Indoor smoking bans may have broken society. But the bastards want to break it some more with outdoor smoking bans.
In other news, Emily and me met up with Klaus K in the Smoky Drinky Bar yesterday afternoon. Emily’s going to interview him. Klaus is a Danish rock star, and smoker, and is currently touring Denmark with his band Danser med Drenge. Nowhere else – because they sing in Danish, and nobody much else speaks Danish other than the Danes in Denmark.
We ended up talking for an hour and a half or more, and RdM in New Zealand joined in too a bit later (and also Twentyrothmans briefly).
Klaus thought that the English-speaking anglosphere was too self-absorbed. Americans and Brits didn’t pay much attention to anybody in Europe, or indeed anyone outside their own countries.
I think he ‘s right, but I think it’s changing. I remember when I first got interested in US politics, the Americans I came across seemed to be very inward-looking. The USA was the centre of their universe. Nothing seemed to exemplify this better than the World Series baseball league, most (all?) of whose games are played in the USA. So the World was the USA.
But recently on shows like Alex Jones’ Infowars, which sees Alex Jones comparing the fight against the globalists to the American Revolution in 1776, the appearance of foreign voices on the show (e.g. Brits like Paul Joseph Watson and Nigel Farage, or Italians like Leo Zagami) has begun to force a more international perspective. After all us Brits were on the enemy side back in 1776.
But I think that all countries are naturally inward-looking. Us Britons in the UK are pretty inward-looking as well. You’d think that what with Shakespeare and Newton and co. we thought we’d more or less single-handedly invented civilisation. But we’ve been getting much more outward-looking in recent years.
Maybe it’s also that most individual people are naturally inward-looking. They’re mostly wrapped up in themselves, in earning a living, getting by, going shopping.
The other thing that Klaus said was that Danes and Germans had a very handy word – Genussmittel -, which usually gets translated to mean “luxury goods”, but actually meant something more like “things you like to buy”, such as tobacco, alcohol, sugar, chocolate, and so on. And there doesn’t seem to a positive word in English for such things. For as Emily pointed out, they’re usually just called “vices” on which “sin taxes” are levied. Klaus thinks I should invent a word for us to use. So I must appeal to readers to join in the search for a word. Funstuff? Fun food? Delights?
Klaus also said that he felt that there was insufficient recognition of the role being played by Public Health people in the medical profession, working in tandem with the Pharmaceutical industry, to prohibit tobacco so that people would have to use drugs manufactured by Big Pharma instead.
Anyway, here’s Danser med Drenge. Klaus is on the bass guitar.