The Day That Freedom Died

I suppose that, these days, over much of the Western world, if you asked anyone what their most pressing concern was, they’d probably say Immigration, or maybe Terrorism, or maybe Islam, or Donald Trump, or the European Union.

I should perhaps do a poll of my readers. I would ask: What matters most to you? And the question would be accompanied by a list of options which would include not only all the above but also Global Warming and Political Correctness and Net Neutrality.

They’re all important things that get talked about. And they’re all things in which I’m interested as well. After all, I frequently write about them.

But if anyone were to ask me what my own most pressing concern was, I’d have no hesitation in giving my own personal answer:

The Smoking Ban.

For it remains the case that, since 1 July 2007, when the UK smoking ban came into effect, it’s been the centre of my concern.

In fact, I wake up thinking about it every day.

Nothing else really matters to me. Europe? I’m not too bothered, to be honest. Donald Trump? I don’t care. Immigration? I’m indifferent. Islam? I couldn’t give two hoots.

But the smoking ban is something I care about profoundly. And I can illustrate what it is that matters to me by something that happened on 1 July 2007. I was standing outside a pub in Devon that day, in the company of a number of other smokers who had all just been exiled to the outdoors, when one of them – a complete stranger – came up to me and said: “It’s not a free country any more.”

Never a truer word was spoken. In England, 1 July 2007 was the day that freedom died. Because if you can’t sit in a pub and drink a pint of beer and smoke a cigarette, you have no freedom. You have no freedom at all.

Some 1000 years of English history was annulled that day. We all became serfs just like we used to be 1000 years ago. We all became subject to complete and absolute tyranny again. After 1000 years of struggle to throw off the yoke of Popes and Kings and Tyrants, we were back under the yoke again.

And it wasn’t just us poor English that fell under the yoke. The Scottish and the Irish also fell under the same yoke, but on different days than we English did. And the same happened in France and Spain and Italy. Almost every single country in Europe has fallen under this yoke. In fact, more or less every single country in the world has come under the yoke. Much of the USA has fallen under the yoke. And also Russia and China and India, and Australia and New Zealand and Canada.

The smoking bans that have spread over the globe over the past decade or two have seen the imposition of a global tyranny.

But nobody talks about it! Instead, they talk about Donald Trump, or the EU, or immigration, or global warming. Nobody ever talks about the poisonous smoking bans spreading their mendacious, totalitarian, and divisive mantle of control over the whole world.

They think it doesn’t matter. They think there are more important things that deserve their concern. They think that more or less anything else is more important than smoking bans. And that’s the main reason why the smoking bans continue to multiply and spread, and why freedom is vanishing everywhere at ever-increasing speed.

I think that Alex Jones is an American patriot. I think that Owen Shroyer and David Knight and Steve Pieczenik and Roger Stone and Michael Savage are American patriots as well. I think Donald Trump is an American patriot too. I think they’re all patriots and freedom lovers. But to the extent that they ignore the smoking bans that are multiplying around them, to that extent they may as well not be fighting for their countries or for freedom at all. For Tobacco Control wishes to take away everyone’s freedom, and Alex Jones and Owen Shroyer and David Knight and Steve Pieczenik and Roger Stone and Michael Savage and Donald Trump are letting them take it. None of them are protesting about smoking bans at all. These patriots and freedom lovers never say a word about the absolutely tyrannical smoking bans proliferating everywhere.

What’s the point in having a First Amendment right to free speech, or a Second Amendment right to bear arms, if you can’t even light a cigarette inside a bar or in your own home?

I notice that Q or QAnon – a phenomenon about which I’ve written a couple of times – is now getting mainstream media coverage (e.g. BBC). And Q presents himself as a patriot and freedom-lover. His regular mantra is Where We Go One We Go All.

Not if you’re a smoker, though. If you’re a smoker, you can go to hell, and ‘we’ won’t be anywhere in sight. For neither Alex Jones nor Donald Trump nor Q will lift a finger to help you.

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29 Responses to The Day That Freedom Died

  1. Mark Jarratt, Lombok, Indonesia says:

    Fluent and lucid. Totally agree, and the smoking prohibitionist tax and ban bullying playbook is now used by hard coercive paternalists everywhere. It is impossible to ever achieve the government sanctioned health cultist utopia prescribed by meddling lifestyle dictators. Indonesia is a major contrast. The national and provincial governments across this far flung archipelago have much more pressing issues, such as ensuring people get enough to eat. The health cultist bullies and spineless anti freedom legislators deliberately exclude the demonstrated preferences of millions of citizens daily. Another history lesson is required. Overtaxing kleptocrats must be deposed. Vive la revolution! 😡

  2. simplex says:

    The anti-smoker campaign has been my gateway to everything else. Years and years of researching and debating the drones has taught me to see through the conditioning, the propaganda and the brainwashing. Along the line I saw through the bullshit of the left. Soon after feminism. Then the origins of feminism, cultural marxism. Then the origins of marxism (of which we cannot speak ofc). Funny enough, it was here on your blog I saw mention of collusion between the world bank and the medical-industrial complex (oi vey). As for islam, a nasty ideology that seeks world domination and wants to enslave us (just like the other one btw).

    As it turns out, stigmatizing a large part of the population and force them to stay at home in front of their computers and educate themselves might not have been such a good idea, after all.

  3. Rose says:

    What’s the point in having a First Amendment right to free speech, or a Second Amendment right to bear arms, if you can’t even light a cigarette inside a bar or in your own home?

    This is where hanging around on an American blog for years comes in so handy.

    The right to smoke a cigarette in your own home would come under the Unnenumerated Rights, later known as the Nineth Ammendment.

    Ninth Amendment to the United States Constitution

    “The First through Eighth Amendments address the means by which the federal government exercises its enumerated powers, while the Ninth Amendment addresses a “great residuum” of rights that have not been “thrown into the hands of the government,” as Madison put it. The Ninth Amendment became part of the Constitution on December 15, 1791 upon ratification by three-fourths of the states.

    The final form of the amendment ratified by the states is as follows:

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

    This appears to be similar to the difference between British Common Law and Roman Law as followed by the EU, which regularly shocks and confuses us.
    We were brought up under Common Law, which I always understood to mean that Everything not expressly forbidden is allowed, whereas Roman Law from what I’ve read means Everything that is not expressly allowed is forbidden.

    Knowing nothing about the Law apart from having lived under it all my life, I await correction

  4. Rose says:

    Further to your Chilling Tweet post, there is confirmation of something on Raedwald’s blog today that I have long suspected, since the first week of the Smoking Ban in fact, all the anti-tobacco trolls seemed to change argument ( and prime insult) over all the newspaper threads on the same day.

    UK government leads ‘fake news’ & cyber manipulation – new report
    3 August 2018

    “In fact, lost in the silly season, is a new and authoritative report from the prestigious Oxford Internet Institute that finds that the UK government is itself in the forefront of social media manipulation through ‘fake’ content creation, distraction, trolling and harassment, using around 1,500 Full Time Equivalent staff to distort, manipulate and pollute social media. It’s not we, private citizens, that need to be regulated – it’s Whitehall and Westminster.”

    If you haven’t read it already that is.

    • Frank Davis says:

      I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Tobacco Control are doing this.

      • Rose says:

        It seems to have started as an American import for the 2005 election, now it seems that it’s become normal practice.

        “A documentary to be screened on Channel 4 tomorrow, filmed by an undercover journalist who got a job in Labour’s war room, reveals how party members and supporters were systematically used to create the impression of ‘real people’ passionately backing the government.”

        “But the Dispatches programme, The Dirty Tricks Election, is the first to show in detail how astroturfing works – and how sophisticated it has become. Campaign materials seen by Dispatches stress that ‘more people trust the letters page than any other page of their local newspaper’ and that local organisers should target it.”

        It had worked so well in the 2005 election, why would they stop two years later, when the protests of 20million people suddenly banned from the pubs needed to be quietened and discredited?

        “……. A key aspect of any smoke-free campaign is to mobilize the silent majority. Most non-smokers do not speak out against smoking, but you have to tap into their power to win your case. Angry smokers who feel they are losing what they feel is their right to smoke will likely speak out in a variety of ways
        — letters to the editor, comments sections of online articles, radio call-in shows, etc. Their voices can seem very loud, even though they represent a significant minority of the population.”

  5. Roobeedoo2 says:

    James Delingpole on Tommy Robinson being freed:

    Disdain for Tommy Robinson sounds an awful lot like disdain for smoking.

  6. Emily says:

    Just this week we aired an interview on our show The Smoking Section, with a cigar smoker who is concerned with various social justice issues, and he doubted that smoking bans were a serious social issue. His viewpoint is so typical; yet it’s profoundly disturbing the blindness people have to the fact that smokers are discriminated against, and subjected to outright hostility, every single day.

    • Frank Davis says:

      This one? They’re talking cigars.

      • Emily says:

        Yes, that’s the one!

        • Frank Davis says:

          I didn’t hear him say that smoking bans weren’t “a serious social issue”. He said something slightly different:

          6:20 minutes: “The smoking thing, given significant other issues that we face as a people, I simply don’t see it as front and centre.”

          What he was saying was that there were more important things – like homelessness and opioids – than smoking bans. I could well see what he meant.

          Stephen Helfer pointed out that the new HUD smoking ban (which he hadn’t heard about) could result in people getting evicted from their homes. Perhaps he’d begin to see smoking bans as more serious if they start leading to homelessness? Or death when people fall out of windows or get locked outside?

          He’s invited back next week. Perhaps you could think of some questions Stephen might ask him next time round.

  7. jaxthefirst says:

    It’s strange, isn’t it, how smoking has become a non-issue for so many people purporting to be concerned about our freedoms and liberties and the over-encroachment of the State into citizens’ lives? Because in many ways it’s the absolute fulcrum, the starting point, if you like for the gradual decline in respect for people’s right to freedom and thus the State’s keenness to overturn those freedoms in pursuit of their own idealistic worldview. By quietly turning a blind eye to the whole process of anti-smoking from its small beginnings to the behemoth it has become today, they effectively render all of their arguments against the erosion of other freedoms null and void, which enables the State to continue its intrusion into other areas of our lives unabated.

    By tacitly accepting State-sponsored favouritism in one area, on the basis of some cherry-picked studies or, worse still, simply fabricated statistical trickery indicating that smokers are “harming others,” they effectively leave the door open for all those freedoms that they claim to hold so dear to be infringed upon in the same way, provided, of course, that all the necessary “research” is claimed to have been done, and “proof” of harm to others is indicated. We see this “harm to others” being utilised now in respect not just of the traditional “vices” such as drinking, gambling, casual sex or over-eating, but it’s even now encroaching on some of the more basic freedoms such as freedom of speech, freedom of opinion and freedom of association.

    And it all started with the seemingly-unassociated activity of smoking tobacco. No wonder so many people call the smoking ban the “smoking ban experiment,” because that’s exactly what it was. A testing ground. What a shame all these great, supposedly-rebellious “champions of freedom” can’t see it. Because unless and until they do, they’re doomed to failure, no matter how hard they try, and the erosion of all freedoms, is destined, salami-style, to continue.

  8. waltc says:

    These are the constitutional grounds (plus some others) on which Clash’s case against the HUD ban is based.

  9. waltc says:

    though politics was the original subject, I found this an interesting analysis of the nonsmoking public’s increasingly widespread and virulent anti-smokerism. This is from Jonah Goldberg, in turn quoting an article by a social psychologist:

    “Rather than being directly translated into behavior, psychologists tell us beliefs can remain latent until “triggered”. In a fascinating study, Karen Stenner shows in The Authoritarian Dynamic that while some individuals have “predispositions” towards intolerance, these predispositions require an external stimulus to be transformed into actions. Or, as another scholar puts it: “It’s as though some people have a button on their foreheads, and when the button is pushed, they suddenly become intensely focused on defending their in-group. But when they perceive no such threat, their behavior is not unusually intolerant. So the key is to understand what pushes that button.”

    “What pushes that button, Stenner and others find, is group-based threats. In experiments researchers easily shift individuals from indifference, even modest tolerance, to aggressive defenses of their own group by exposing them to such threats…”

    This merely confirms what we’ve suspected: that those sudden converts to virulent smoker-haters were inherently bigots-in-waiting, predisposed to hate (something, anything) and when their button was pushed (and pushed and pushed) by the threat that a smokers’ smoke was killing them, it provided a target and an outlet.

    • Barry Homan says:

      Walt, it’s what I was trying to state a while back about the first smoking ban just happening to occur in Berkeley, CA. It was an area largely dominated by lesbians, many whom possessed a complete, utter disdain for any and all males…but since outright persecution of males was unfeasible and unjustifiable, the hate just continued to buil up, with no real, satisfying outlet – until it finally got channeled towards another group, an adequate substitute target: smokers.

      It started the whole ball rolling.

  10. waltc says:

    The comments here (UK Sun) are even worse than the proposal itself. Again perhaps proving tne thesis about unfocused hatred getting focused:

    • Rose says:

      “a new and authoritative report from the prestigious Oxford Internet Institute that finds that the UK government is itself in the forefront of social media manipulation through ‘fake’ content creation, distraction, trolling and harassment, using around 1,500 Full Time Equivalent staff to distort, manipulate and pollute social media.”

  11. Mark Jarratt, off Rinca Island, Indonesia says:

    I commented and my deathless prose appeared, ‘waiting for moderation’ but no sign of it. Could be remote server error as I’m in Indonesia. Recap: no tobacco controls here, advertising tobacco is permitted, cigarettes about 1£/pkt, and the government has more pressing issues, such as ensuring people get enough to eat.

  12. Pingback: Dead and Dying Computers | Frank Davis

  13. Linda Taylor says:

    Frank, you are truly a hero to me.

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