the danger of the new era of indoctrination and manipulation of all of us
This has become a fundamental attack on everything normal, on everything which has been the basis for a functioning human society, at least until now.
And of course (although he doesn’t mention it) smoking is another normal activity which is being ‘de-normalised’.
But if what is normal is, as he says, the basis of a functioning human society, then once the norms have been dispensed with there will no longer be a functioning human society.
Doing what is normal means doing something the right way, the way that works. Do things the wrong way, and they won’t work. This applies to everything from gardening to cooking to driving cars. There’s a right way, and lots and lots of wrong ways. In the end, everyone ends up driving the right way, because all the wrong-way drivers wind up crippled or dead.
So any experimental new society, in which all the old norms have been torn up, is very unlikely to be a functioning human society. It’s almost certain to be a malfunctioning human society. And it will disintegrate and die. And gradually the old ways of doing things, the ways that worked, will gradually re-emerge. And they will naturally re-emerge. They won’t need to be enforced with laws.
It doesn’t matter how much indoctrination and manipulation is used to change people’s behaviour, because if the new behaviours and the new norms don’t serve as the basis of a functioning human society, then the resultant malfunctioning human society won’t last very long.
If the ‘new normality’ of banning smoking everywhere serves as the basis for a functioning human society, then it will survive. If not, it won’t, and it will be a short-lived social experiment that simply didn’t work. And it seems to me that smoking bans which exile smokers to the outdoors, expel them from society, cannot by definition form the basis of any sort of functioning human society, because a functioning human society must be one which includes as many people as possible, not excludes as many people as possible. For if you exclude as many people as possible, you end up with no human society at all.
And the fundamental attack on everything normal will result in the end in the re-establishment and renewal and revitalisation of all the norms that are now coming under attack.