Did WW2 Ever End?

Continuing on with the theme of yesterday’s post, I remember someone in the Beatles or the Rolling Stones once saying that they never knew which of their songs was going to be a hit. Which struck me as being like a comedian saying he didn’t understand why people found him funny.

Perhaps the same is true of politicians, and they don’t know why people vote for them.

But I can speak for myself about why I’ll vote for some politicians, and not others. And I don’t vote for Nigel Farage because he’s anti-EU: I vote for him because he’s a smoker who sticks up for smokers.

The only time I’ve heard him speak in person was in a pub in Stony Stratford, where he’d come to support a protest against a proposed street smoking ban. He didn’t talk about the EU at all that day. And yet it was opposition to the EU that got him into politics, not opposition to smoking bans. I only visited Stony Stratford once, but he visited it 3 or 4 times. All of which says that Nigel Farage was even more passionate in his opposition to smoking bans than I was.

These days my view of all politicians is entirely determined by their attitude to smoking and to smoking bans, and by nothing else.  I like Nigel Farage because he drinks and smokes. I liked Tony Benn because he smoked a pipe. I loathe Hillary Clinton because she’s a virulent antismoker. Same with Michael Bloomberg. The only thing that I find disappointing about Donald Trump is that he doesn’t smoke big Havana cigars in his gilded residence in Trump Tower. I have contempt for people like David Cameron and Theresa May who were smokers at the time of the UK smoking ban, but never spoke up against it, and either quit smoking or pretended not to be smokers.

The same applies to political parties and political organisations. I voted Liberal Democrat for many years until 95% of Lib Dem MPs voted for the UK smoking ban. After that I never voted for them again. It’s the same reason why I’ll never vote for the Labour party: 90% of Labour MPs voted for the smoking ban. If I vote Conservative these days, it’s not because I’m a conservative, but because that’s all that’s left for me to vote for.

The same also applies to the EU. I used to be pro-EU – until the EU parliament voted in 2009 to ban smoking throughout the whole of Europe. Overnight I swung from being pro-EU to anti-EU. Recently I’ve become even more intensively anti-EU, since I learned that it’s been calling on member states to ban smoking since 1989 (if not before). Why else is the EU disintegrating other than the fact that it has expelled 150 million European smokers from polite society? What a monumentally stupid thing to have done!

It even affects my perception of individuals. Queen guitarist Brian May plummeted in my estimation when I discovered he was an antismoker. The same happened with the philosopher Karl Popper. And the author Leon Tolstoy. And conversely individuals rise in my estimation when I discover that they smoke. They suddenly become likeable, the instant they light a cigarette, or puff on a pipe, or pull on a cigar. What would Humphrey Bogart or Lauren Bacall have been without cigarettes? And Clint Eastwood in A Fistful Of Dollars without a cigar clamped between his teeth? Or Churchill without his cigar? Or FDR without his elegant cigarette holder? Or avuncular Uncle Joe Stalin without his pipe? Wasn’t WW2 a war of smokers against antismokers? Did WW2 ever end?

If you want me to vote for you, all you need do is light up. You’ll be telling me everything I want to know about you.

And these days I’m wondering whether what’s true of me is true of all smokers. How is it that, within a month of creating it, Nigel Farage’s Brexit party is polling at 30%, while UKIP is polling only 4%? It must be because the British people prefer the man to the party he once led. What do they like about him? He’s not the only Eurosceptic politician in Britain. It’s quite obvious to a smoker like me. But it’s probably completely incomprehensible to anyone else.

And these days I’m wondering whether what’s true of me is true of all smokers everywhere. And that the secret of the success of Marine Le Pen and Matteo Salvini is that they’re both smokers like Nigel Farage, and they get the votes of smokers, who recognise themselves in them.

We’re in a world war of smokers against antismokers. It’s a war of one kind of morality against another. For the past 50 or 60 years smokers have been losing. But maybe now we’re starting to win again.

About Frank Davis

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17 Responses to Did WW2 Ever End?

  1. Fredrik Eich says:

    I did not know that Popper was smokerphobic.

  2. Mark Jarratt, Canberra, Australia says:

    I too admit negatively judging supporters of all prohibitionist lifestyle controls and endless government intrusion, as self righteous ideologues. Dr Brian May, CBE, in particular disappointed me, as I previously believed him to be intelligent like all the astrophysicists I know (2), with objective analytical respect for evidence and intellectual discourse. Apparently meddling paternalist billionaire Bloomberg, who knows best how the hoi polloi should behave, has been appointed WHO Global Ambassador for Non-communicable Diseases. Hardly surprising when he has bribed that unaccountable unelected body to engage in major mission creep by adopting his biases and hatreds as entrenched dogma. Dame Edna Everage recently responded to accusations of politically incorrectness, like smoking, saying “No darling, I’m not racist. I like all kinds of people, especially the white ones”. 😳

  3. Rose says:

    For the past 50 or 60 years smokers have been losing

    I have often wondered if the sudden upsurge of animal experiments with tobacco in America after the War might have been some unexpected byproduct of Operation Paperclip.

    • Joe L. says:

      I think there’s a very good possibility. I’m just not sure if it would have been an unexpected byproduct.

      • Charles Burns says:

        It’s my understanding that in the experiments with dogs and mice hooked up to machines that made them smoke 10 packs a day the “scientists” were unable to cause a single case of lung cancer in any of the animals

  4. Igrowmyown says:

    O/T but that makes a refreshing change,the new Norwegian Health Minister has called for Norwegians to be allowed to smoke and drink as much as they like and to stop treating smokers like pariahs.

  5. Charles Burns says:

    I’m with you, Mr Davis. In America it’s the same way. The Democrats are the antismoking party, but the Republicans are not much better. I find that I can only vote in local elections. Every candidate in my state who wants to go to Washington is an antismoker, so I don’t vote. Trump comes from a virulent antismoking family, he doesn’t smoke or drink. Smoking in all housing supported by HUD (Housing and Urban Development) has been banned. That’s ALL public housing in America, affecting millions of poor and elderly, who are losing their housing if caught smoking. Recently an 89 year old woman was evicted from her home for smoking. ( and the antis don’t mention how an 89 year old smoker is in good health.)

    Smoking in my own apartment has been criminalized by Obama, and Trump does not roll back the ban. A lawsuit is happening in New York City against the ban, citing Constitutional issues. HUD must reply June 28. Perhaps a ray of hope? I am cautiously optimistic. But NYC CLASH needs donations, however small, to pay the lawyers and fees.

  6. waltc says:

    Public Broadcasting (U.S.) did ten minutes on Joe Jackson and his music:


    • Lepercolonist says:

      Thanks for the Joe Jackson link, Walt. I’ve always loved Joe Jackson’s music. When Joe showed up here on Frank’s blog I was floored. Joe will forever be in my thoughts.

      • Joe L. says:

        I’m also a big fan of Joe Jackson’s music. A musician myself, my bands mostly played original songs at shows, but I would occasionally throw “One More Time” into our setlists. He went from being one of my musical influences to being somewhat of a hero when he published “Smoke, Lies and the Nanny State.” I was also quite surprised when he first showed up in the comments section here on Frank’s blog. It’s great to have him pop in here occasionally to share his thoughts. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to catch him on his current tour, it sounded like a great set, focusing on four albums, one from each decade of his career.

    • Rose says:

      I was always charmed by this

  7. Fredrik Eich says:

    “Let people smoke, drink and eat red meat – Norwegian health minister”


    Maybe she has compared the lung cancer rates of Norway and the US?!

    • garyk30 says:

      Perfect example of lying with a chart.
      The right vertical is ‘deaths per 100,000’. But, the vertical only goes to 100.
      If the right vertical was graphed to 100,000, as it should be, all of those lines would be flat on the horizontal line.

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