Somehow or other, yesterday’s post spawned several interesting sub-threads.
Bucko, writing about young people:
They’ve never known pubs that allowed smoking and now, we’re getting pubs opening in town, post smoking ban, that have never had smokers in ever. That’s why it will be so hard to get a repeal; there is a generation growing up who have no idea what all the fuss is about.
And that’s the plan, of course. Society is being re-engineered to be “smoke-free”. Once people have got used to the new rules, maybe even the No Smoking signs can be removed, because people will have been fully trained not to smoke anywhere any more. And indeed the No Smoking signs have been coming down in many places. Job done. They’re about to be replaced with the No Sugar or No Custard signs, or whatever they intend to ban next.
But they seem to have a concrete or plaster of Paris model of society (right): keep it in place the way you want it for long enough, and it will set hard and stay in place. After that you can remove the formwork or mould into which you poured the liquid concrete or plaster.
But I think that human societies are much, much more complex than that. I think theirs is a very naive and simplistic (and also conceited and arrogant) idea of how societies work. I think that what they’re doing, as they push people around, is simply generated deep anger in millions and millions of people. Those people may at present be powerless to do anything about it, but when they get the chance, they’ll act very quickly.
But then that’s my own naïve and simplistic idea of how society works. I see human societies as being physical processes, much like solar systems, or pendulums, or (my current interest) hot rocks beneath ice sheets. In these systems, nothing ever stays the same for long. Any attempt to build a static, utopian “New Society” is bound to fail, because societies are always on the move all the time, in multiple different ways. As I see it, human societies are dynamic systems in which values and beliefs and customs are always changing. If nothing else, it’s visible in the way people dress, which is something that is always changing, from month to month, and from year to year, and from century to century. And also we’re always finding out new things – like how to build rockets to fire into outer space, or computers that can communicate with each other all over the world -, and our new knowledge changes our attitudes and outlooks.
So I think that once you’ve built your new, carefully-planned, “smoke-free” utopia, you’ll find that it immediately starts to go a bit pear-shaped, because that’s always what slowly happens once you remove the constraints that keep people behaving in the way you want them to behave. You have to keep the constraining formwork in place, because the concrete never sets. And that means that you have to keep working to keep everything in place, and add new constraints when the concrete starts seeping out in unexpected places. And that’s why Tobacco Control are always looking for new bans – new constraints – to keep people in place. Because once they’d banned smoking in pubs, the smokers simply went outside. So they then started to want to ban smoking outside, of course. And when smokers started vaping instead of smoking, they had to ban that as well. Tobacco Control has to always be demanding new bans, new restrictions, because the original restrictions were never strong enough. They have to become more and more tyrannical. And the more tyrannical they become, the more people they anger. In the end they simply make too many enemies for themselves. In the end, to continue the analogy, they end up with liquid concrete which is bursting out of its constraining formwork in all sorts of different places, and everyone can see that it simply isn’t working, and never could work.
The fate of Tobacco Control will most likely be the same fate as that of East Germany at around about the time the Berlin Wall (another piece of social engineering) came down. It came down because East Germans simply started pouring out of East Germany through other routes (neighbouring countries). They couldn’t be kept in place forever. Eventually they found a way round the imprisoning Iron Curtain (another piece of social engineering).
It’s the same fate that all utopian social projects eventually and inevitably face. They’re all bound to fail. The EU is another piece of utopian social engineering which was always bound to fail. With all its rules and regulations it was simply too constraining on too many people. It became a kind of prison. And it made itself more enemies than it had friends. And the newest inmates of this prison – the peoples of the former Eastern Bloc – had no wish to simply exchange one prison for another, and so they are the ones who are leading the growing revolt.
The same is true of the utopian, globalist New World Order. It’ll never work. It never could ever possibly work. And so that’s falling to bits too. It’s like the utopian social project of Alexander (world conquest, natch). When he died at the very young age of 32, his empire immediately disintegrated. The same happened with the utopian social engineering project of the Roman Empire, which expanded much like the current EU (which is a reflection or reconstruction of it, founded in the Treaty of Rome), and then contracted and disintegrated.
And in many ways the current political near-civil-war in the USA is a collision between utopian social engineers (Obama, Clinton, the Democrats) and pragmatic realists like Donald Trump, who is not trying to build some Brave New World or a New World Order, but instead restore a former one (i.e. Make America Great Again).
I was going to write today not just about the thread that Bucko started, but about several others as well. That’ll have to wait.
But the main point is that all utopian social engineering projects are always bound to fail. And smoking bans are another utopian social engineering project, and one that is bound to fail as well. When they get under way, they look unstoppable at first (the Alexandrian conquests, the expansion of the Roman Empire, the short-lived empires of Napoleon and Hitler). But they have to work harder and harder to keep the constraints in place, as people find new ways round the walls and ramparts. They become impossible to manage. And they end up making themselves more enemies than friends. And at that point disintegration and collapse sets in. The EU is now at that point. And the equally utopian, global smoking bans are also at that point.
Bucko, in another comment, added:
Young people never seem to mention the ban, but if we walk into a smoking area with people our age or older in it, someone inevitably starts a conversation with us by saying, “Bollocks this, innt?”.
Then we spend ten minutes complaining about the ban before going back in.
And that’s over 10 years after the UK smoking ban was imposed. The concrete still hasn’t set, after all that time. And it never will set hard like the utopian social engineers in Tobacco Control expected it to. And so they’re always calling for more bans. And always making themselves more and more enemies. It’s not working. It never could work. And so Tobacco Control is going to be destroyed. The only real question is: how much else is going to collapse with it when it eventually falls? My guess is that it’ll take with it the UN and the WHO and the BMA and the RCP. And maybe even the BBC and the Labour party. Because those places are chock full of utopian social engineers as well. And they’re all going to have to go. The whole lot of them.