FROM THE CHAIRMAN
If the smoking ban is a success, then how do you define failure?
On the 1st July 2012 we ‘celebrate’ five years of the indoor smoking ban in England. By every single measure, in Freedom2Choose’s opinion, it has been a complete failure.
Ten thousand pubs have closed, along with Working Mens Clubs and bingo halls. Live music venues report dwindling audiences at indoor events.
A very conservative estimate of 200,000 full and part time jobs have been lost, many of them by society’s most poor and disadvantaged.
As for the social effects of the ban, it has hit the elderly the hardest. You cannot expect 80 year war veterans to hobble out every hour or so to puff on their cigarette or pipe. They are to be banished into the lonely world of their houses and be denied social interaction. People now increasingly drink alone and at home without the regulation on their drinking that a social setting and a landlord or lady would provide.
The tobacco control industry is not stopping at banning smoking inside. They now want to ban smoking in cars, parks and hospital grounds. I can just imagine a recently bereaved visitor being lectured by the smoke patrol police to extinguish their cigarette in an emotionally charged moment. Plain packaging of cigarettes not only poses increased health risks through counterfeit produce, but also undermines World Trade Organization laws.
Not only that: every taxpayer funded ‘charity’ has been give fresh impetus to push for a greater nanny state, on alcohol, obesity, green and other issues. This was described by Chris Snowdon in his IEA paper ‘Sock Puppets’ (see The Blogs section below).
The junk science is unrelenting, and to coin a phrase ‘we are all smokers now.’
The freely-admitted endgame is for a totally smoke-free world where both smoking and the sale of tobacco will be banned.
We can, however, remain optimistic. The people of the UK, Europe, and worldwide are fighting back. You only have to look at the University of Bath’s Tobacco Tactics site to see how many politicians, politicos, bloggers and members of the public are involved in fighting back, not only on tobacco but on other issues too.
It was a watershed when a Department of Health commissioned report identified smokers as becoming a ‘despised underclass’, compared our treatment to racism, and concluded there was a danger of smokers becoming ‘social lepers.’
The tobacco control industry has gone too far and will be brought to account.
Dave Atherton, June 2012
Violet Phillips has become one of the United Kingdom’s latest centenarians this month. She puts her longevity solely down to smoking, as she says here in her own words. We would like to wish Violet many more happy birthdays and indeed congratulate her on reaching her century.
Sadly it seems that the anti smoking smoking industry cannot even allow smokers to have their centenary in peace: in defiance of convention where the birthday person receives presents, smokers are now being asked to give up smoking as a gift to the anti smoking industry. Dr James Cant, Scottish head of the British Lung Foundation, said: “The best birthday present she could give us is to finally quit the habit.”
A recent House of Lords debate confirms that the Tobacco Control industry’s endgame is a total ban on all tobacco and smoking: Earl Howe (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State [Quality], Health; Conservative) said “It is smoking that we aim to reduce, which will have consequences for the sale of tobacco products. For the good of public health we are trying to arrive at a point where there is no smoking in this country, and that would mean no retail sales of smoking tobacco.”
F2C, among many others, was accused of harassing and abusing Tobacco Control activists. The story appeared in The Guardian and the Daily Mail. Dave Atherton complained to both papers. The Daily Mail has amended its article; The Guardian has not, yet.
At last: diesel exhaust fumes are admitted to be a major cancer risk.
‘Unhealthy’ lifestyles do NOT harm men’s fertility.
Doctor’s reject a ‘sin tax’ as being unfair on the poor.
F2C FRONT PAGE ARTICLE ROUNDUP
Pots and Kettles: In which Dave Atherton rebuts newspaper articles blaming F2C for harassment of the Tobacco Control industry.
Pots and Kettles part 2: In which we look at how the Tobacco Control industry harasses and promotes violence against smokers.
Great News from Clubland: In which we are cheered to learn that the CIU recently voted to bring back smoking rooms – and that over 650 Clubs had successfully applied for rates rebates as a direct result of loss of business after the smoking ban.
Yes or No Prime Minister: In which we enjoy some dialogue from the TV series, and watch the latest video from the ‘Hands off Our Packs’ campaign against plain packaging.
Lots of good articles on the blogs, as usual, but again there is not enough space to list them all. So here is a short selection with apologies to all superb bloggers not included here.
Dick Puddlecote picks up our Front Page CIU story (mutual backscratching hat tips).
Chris Snowden writes about how the government pays outside groups to lobby itself on lifestyle and other issues.
Leg-Iron blasts away in his inimitable style at plain packaging, taking no prisoners en route.
THE LAST WORD
This is part of the Tobacco Control Industry’s blueprint for the endgame:
Freedom2choose: c/o John H Baker 22 Glastonbury House, Priestfields, Middlesbrough, Cleveland TS3 0LF Tel/Fax 0845 643 9469
Freedom2choose (Scotland): c/o Michael Davidson, 15, Linksview House, Leith, EH6 6DP Tel 0845 643 9552