Monday, December 13, 2010

Freedom for Smokers: Sign the Petition



Forest, the pro smoking lobby group have made a video to explain why the ban on brand advertising on cigarette packets and a ban on cigarette vending machine on is wrong.

I happen to agree with them, even though I am a non smoker and hate smoking. But I do believe in the freedom of the individual and that individuals are perfectly capable of making up their minds on what they want to buy and why.

Those who wish to ban cigarette advertising actually wish to ban cigarettes. Well, that's a consistent position. The government's position is not consistent, though. They want their cake and they want to eat it. Or should I say, they want to discourage smoking but at the same time, they are gagging for the tax revenues smokers provide.

I'm particularly anti the ban on brand advertising as it treats people like idiots. Individuals are capable of rational decision making. They don't need government to do it for them.

Sign the Forest petition HERE.

115 comments:

Half The Story said...

But I do believe in the freedom of the individual and that individuals are perfectly capable of making up their minds on what they want to buy and why.

So you agree with a total decriminisation on drugs then?

john in cheshire said...

I have already signed it, Iain. I'm not a smoker but I object to people being hounded into conformity. I'm pleased to see you advocating the signing of the petition.

P. Stable said...

"Those who wish to ban cigarette advertising actually wish to ban cigarettes."

And you know this because you spoke to every single person in Britain who wants to ban cigarette advertising?

Graeme said...

Not signing anything that FOREST is behind.

Large Melot Please said...

Firstly can I confirm these new restictions come from the European Union.

Non smokers maybe most interested in the EU's plans to ban all smokeless tobacco like electronic cigarettes.

Nicotine replacement therapies like patches and gum, after a year have a success rate of <5%. So out of the £300 million the UK taxpayer spends on stop smoking a year £285 million is wasted.

Electronic cigarettes have been tested for safety and giving a clean bill of health and have a success rate of 45%. The pharmaceutical companies have lobbied to get them banned.

The most successful way to give up smoking is Allen Carr's books and clinics with a peer reviewed success rate 53%. I will let the anti smoking and anti nicotine group Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) tell you how effective it is.

"Following a complaint by Allen Carr’s Easyway International, Deborah Arnott and ASH now acknowledge that it was wrong for Ms Arnott to have made the comments relating to the 53% success rate and have issued an unreserved apology. ASH has agreed to pay the legal costs incurred by Allen Carr’s Easyway."

In conclusion non smokers may have an interest in signing this as it is an EU initiative and the banning of smokeless cigarettes will only leave the choice of tobacco.

If you want to see how ridiculous EU lobbying is, here is Dan Hannan lamenting the pharmaceutical influence on banning of herbal remedies.


http://playpolitical.typepad.com/uk_conservative/2010/11/daniel-hannan-expresses-concern-at-the-introduction-of-european-regulations-on-herbal-medicines-.html

graybo said...

By extension then, if you believe in the freedom of an individual to make up their mind about something that is damaging to themselves and damaging to others, you think that all drugs should be legalised and advertised in shops and then subject to taxation.

You could, reasonably, argue that the government should either ban all drugs (including tobacco and alcohol) or legalise them all. But your position, Iain, is as inconsistent as the government's. You can not claim to have better reasoning than the government if you also want it two ways.

This is simply an example of the imperfect world in which we live.

Pure Innovation said...

I'm usually against banning things but the ban on smoking in pubs has made them habitable again for all the non-smokers. As smoking affects the air quality for all people present, whether they have chosen to smoke or not, I agree with the ban in enclosed public spaces.

However bans on advertising, hiding them from display, etc. are just petty and will likely not have any material effect on the number of people that smoke.

................................. said...

"I do believe in the freedom of the individual and that individuals are perfectly capable of making up their minds on what they want to buy and why."... so you support decriminalisation of the possession and supply of all drugs?

"Those who wish to ban cigarette advertising actually wish to ban cigarettes. Well, that's a consistent position. The government's position is not consistent, though. They want their cake and they want to eat it."... Gotta watch out for that nasty stuff Cake - I saw a documentary on it once. I think it was on Brass Eye.

Sres said...

Smoking starts in school with peer pressure, no one goes into a corner shop, looks around, thinks, 'hmm, 20 Benson & Hedges, exactly what I want', if they don't smoke...

With regards heroin & methadone, I would return to the old ways and give the addict the heroin that they crave, methadone costs far more than it does to just dish out heroin.

tory boys never grow up said...

Surprise surprise a Tory believes in the freedom to wrap up a dangerous and unhealthy product as something it isn't!

Peter said...

Anything that reduces smoking has to be good.
Sod human rights!

Mick Turatian said...

I'm usually against banning things but the ban on smoking in pubs has made them habitable again for all the non-smokers.

Correct. But it's also had the effect of drastically reducing their trade. Let the licensee decide what kind of business he wants to operate.

Dick Puddlecote said...

Oh goody, a smoking-related post.

Let the holier-than-thou self-righteous insults fly. :)

jonathan said...

Forest is not a pro smoking group. It is a pro choice and freedom group. Most smokers are well aware of the potential harm they are doing to themselves.

Tomfiglio said...

Seen at:
www.reformthecap.eu/blog/tobacco-subsidies-in-spain

"While some improvements have been made recently, tobacco farmers still receive 4,000€/ha on average [in subsidies]"

The usual EU incompetence, institutional fraud and irresponsibility with other people's money.

bensix said...

But I do believe in the freedom of the individual and that individuals are perfectly capable of making up their minds on what they want to buy and why.

Glad to hear you'll be supporting the legalisation of drugs, Iain...

trevorsden said...

In what way Mr Dale are individuals capable of making up their minds about an addictive drug - one that will kill them?

If you saw a child making its mind up to walk in front of a bus - would you leave it to its own devices?

Tricky problem I know but this petition is sick and fatuous and you had better start taking a look back at some of the quality of your recent posts and start asking yourself why you bother.

This effort is just plain garbage.

PS just which EU regulation exactly?

Patrick said...

Prohibition never worked did it.

Perhaps this will (Not!)

John M Ward said...

I believe in the freedom of the individual never to have tobacco fumes inflicted on them by the drug addicts, anywhere.

No-one ever seems to care about their rights or freedoms, only about the "rights" of addicts of a hard drug (which it is, though that fact was kept hidden from the public until revealed around 1995) who have to hide behind a corrupt law that gives one drug a market monopoly by outlawing all its competition.

As there have been supposedly watertight reasons for outlawing all the other drugs, even soft ones, who with any integrity could possibly support the continuation of tobacco products in the legal market?

Fortunately, with nicotine patches, e-cigarettes and all the rest of it easily available, there is no longer any excuse for not treating tobacco products exactly the same as all other drugs, fro marijuana to heroin. None!

Scan said...

John M Ward,

What about my right, as a cyclist who doesn't own a car, to not have your car's far more dangerous and voluminous fumes enter my lungs for a prolonged period? And don't trot out the old line about it being a necessity - it is not. More conventient, certainly; a necessity, no. The difference is that your car is something you choose, just as smokers choose to smoke, and hypocrisy is something only other people do, isn't it?

Phil101 said...

The band on smoking is right because of the second hand aspect of cigs. If smokers could find a way to take that aspect out it would be fine, but they can't.

When people could smoke in restaurants they were oblivious to the stench it made putting the non smokers off their food and no designated areas never improved this problem, they were pathetic ideas like an extra step or a simple but useless cubical.

It was unfair on non smokers back then and since non smokers are not abusing their health with a blatant killer the non smokers should have advantage in this debate.

Gordon the Fence Post Tortoise said...

@DP
Let the holier-than-thou self-righteous insults fly. :)

Ooh! and yes... yes, look...

The lesser spotted pub closure deniers are out in force too, tut aren't they cute?

Manfarang said...

Who is dying for a fag?



WV fork(i)me

Robert Eve said...

Apart from supporting Dubya's war in Iraq and keeping us out of the Euro - the only sensible policy to come from Labour in 13 years was the smoking ban.

Sean Haffey said...

I think you'll find that the essence of marketing, particularly advertising, is that people don't make rational decisions.

They pay twice as much for some cars as others, despite the core qualities being essential; they buy "anti-aging cream; they buy homeopathic remedies; they pay more for printer ink than vintage champagne and so on.


So, no I don't want cigarette advertising.

john in cheshire said...

Well, Iain, this subject has certainly brought out the illogical and intolerant vitriol of the left in great force. How depressing that they never consider that other people have views and rights too.

Little Black Sambo said...

May not the ban on advertising even help some tobacco companies by saving them money?
(I see some people still believe they can be damaged by "second-hand smoke.)

Dick the Prick said...

@DP

Already got quite a few; apparently Iain's advocating crack & smack somehow or other...

Sue said...

What a hideous bunch of the righteous now seem to browse your blog. Must be the "progressive" Conservatives.

The ban has killed the pub trade and isolated thousands of pensioners who used to go to bingo etc..

The ban is authoritarian and does not give people a choice. If it did, the non smoking pubs would be empty and the others would be nice and busy!

Either stop selling tobacco or lift the ban, which of course won't happen, far too much revenue involved.

Hypocrites.

PS Just you lardies wait until you're banned from fast food outlets. Then I'll laugh.

gadfly said...

Ban cigarette advertising? Ridiculous, small-minded and ultimately ineffective...
Unless smokers themselves agree to cut down on tobacco and protect others from the nocuous effects of their cigarette smoke, the ban will solve nothing. Quite the opposite, given the added temptation to defy impositions.
I know that very well because I am a smoker.

rosewhiteley said...

How depressing to see so many presumably Tory-leaning posters who think they are entitled to tell millions of adults in this country where and how they can buy and use a legal product. This wasn't what I left the Labour Party for.

Presumably they'll have no problem when similar restrictions are announced for alcohol? And "unhealthy" foods?

Elby the Beserk said...

Okay anti-smoking Fascists.

I gave up smoking 7 years ago. Don't like the smell of the stuff - ready mades, anyway, Old Holborn though still makes my nose twitch sympathetically, however.

Regardless, the assault on those who choose to use a LEGAL substance sums up all that is foul and pernicious about Labour and their proscriptive approach to matters of choice. This is NOT a government's business, and those who think it is might be happier elsewhere.

Buzz off, and leave the smokers alone. The collateral damage on our wonderful pub culture is probably now irreversible. If you hate these symbols of our country so much - again - piss off somewhere else.

M Bennett said...

Leave smokers alone, let us have separate rooms in pubs and public buildings.

Johnny S said...

What will be next for hidden displays and plain packaging? Alcohol? Chocolate? Crisps? Products that contain caffeine? Non-organic and non-free range produce? Anything that emits CO2?

And of course the trademark arches of a certain junk food chain will have to come down.

Where is the EVIDENCE to support these ridiculous laws? Whatever happened to "evidence-based policy making"?

Elby the Beserk said...

Next - the motor car, any food with additives, all alcohol, all medication with side effects.

Where do you draw the line? Proper parenting ensures kids do not damage themselves, and helps them when endangered; as an adult, again, the government has NO right to proscribe activity around a legal substance where harm is not as a result of anything else but choice.

In other words, I don't need other people to tell me how to look after myself. And I am NOT a smoker, though I am partial to weed, and occasionally to fine MDMA when I can get it, and the sacred mushroom. I am quite capable of handling all these substances without the sodding government crawling all over me. It is NONE of their business what I consume. Or yours.

Roger said...

I am not a cigarette smoker, although I do enjoy a very occasional cigar. I detested leaving pubs with my clothes stinking of cigarette smoke and hated having my enjoyment of a meal spoiled by smokers. However, I do not believe that people who choose to smoke should have to stand outside or in cold, draught shelters either. Surely it is within the wit of man (or woman!) to design effective extraction/filtration in totally separate smoking rooms within pubs, restaurants, etc. so that those who choose to smoke could enjoy their habit without inconveniencing others. Pubs and restaurants should be allowed to choose whether to offer such an area if they feel the extra business warrants it. Freedom of choice for those who wish to smoke and for those who wish to keep away from them. Live and let live, say I - so I have signed the petition.

John said...

As divisive as the smoking ban is, this is not what the petition is about. It is about the EU wanting to further curtail the rights of legitimate companies even if their product is (gasp!) tobacco, as well as infantalising the consumer. There is simply no good reason, and no evidence, that such legislation will do anything to cut youth smoking (which presumably is the alleged reason they're proposing it). Why they are also trying to stamp out smokeless tobacco makes no sense on the surface either. Maybe it's to save the environment by reducing the amount of snuff handerchiefs being washed? Or maybe it's more along the lines of what Large Merlot Please is saying. My money's on the latter.

Madeline said...

Whatever happened to the 'Big Society'? You can count me out before you start. If I'm considered a pariah, I see no reason to participate in a society which rejects me; no volunteering from me. I'll keep my own company and that of those like me as will those in other persecuted groups.

Are the latest EU proposals just another attempt to drive a wedge between different sections of society?

This kind of thing will have no effect on smokers' habits whatsoever; the sub-culture will merely become more entrenched.

Wallenstein said...

The ban has killed the pub trade and isolated thousands of pensioners who used to go to bingo etc..
Pensioners can still go to the bingo, they just can't smoke there. You talk about choice, but that statement suggests that people simply cannot go to bingo/pub without smoking, which suggests there's not much choice taking place?

As a non-smoker I genuinely can't understand why you *have* to smoke when you go to the bingo... it might be nice, but to stop going altogether seems to be throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

However bans on advertising, hiding them from display, etc. are just petty and will likely not have any material effect on the number of people that smoke.
If advertising didn't work, companies wouldn't spend £millions on it. :-)

True, a lot of it's about persuading people to choose a particular brand over others, but do you really think tobacco firms would decline to advertise to new smokers if they had the choice?

Brian D said...

At last - a grown up view of freedom, despite all the inaccurate brain-dead squealings of the "health" Stasi dictators.
Funny how MPs have managed to keep smoking areas for themselves in parliament! If they ever have the guts to allow the rest of us choose whether or not to smoke, they might possibly begin to earn some respect from voters, instead of the almost universal contempt they have brought upon themselves.

Gordon said...

Although I am a non-smoker it is only right that people should have a choice as to whether the smoke or not. It is quite possible in this day and age to dispurse air very quickly. Why should there not be smoking and non-smoking pubs, Cabins on Cruise Ships, etc. I understand that Public Houses are shutting down by the dozen and of course this is effecting people's personal life and also possibly tax intake. Rumour has it that one can smoke in the House of Commons Bar!! I fully support the easing of the ban.
Gordon

Johnny S said...

From the House of Lords debate last year:

Earl Howe, for Tories, said that research from the Government showing the ban would deter young people from taking up smoking was "shot through with weaknesses and leaps of logic".
He told peers: "There are about 50,000 corner shops in the UK. The organisations representing these corner shops have told me of their acute worry that a point-of-sale ban on the display of tobacco will do serious harm to their trade. The level of concern is very, very high."
Lord Howe said selling cigarettes was crucial to create "footfall" in corner shops. "People who come in to buy cigarettes typically buy other things as well with a higher profit margin," he said.
"If those people cease to patronise small shops the effect on trade in these outlets could well be terminal."
He added: "In Iceland since the tobacco display ban came into force 30% of small shops have closed.
"In Canada where the display ban is in force almost everywhere, dozens are closing every week.
"In Ontario alone where a ban was introduced only in June 2008, 765 convenience stores have closed permanently, that is 8.6% of the total."

Johnny S said...

From the House of Lords debate last year:

Earl Howe, for Tories, said that research from the Government showing the ban would deter young people from taking up smoking was "shot through with weaknesses and leaps of logic".
He told peers: "There are about 50,000 corner shops in the UK. The organisations representing these corner shops have told me of their acute worry that a point-of-sale ban on the display of tobacco will do serious harm to their trade. The level of concern is very, very high."
Lord Howe said selling cigarettes was crucial to create "footfall" in corner shops. "People who come in to buy cigarettes typically buy other things as well with a higher profit margin," he said.
"If those people cease to patronise small shops the effect on trade in these outlets could well be terminal."
He added: "In Iceland since the tobacco display ban came into force 30% of small shops have closed.
"In Canada where the display ban is in force almost everywhere, dozens are closing every week.
"In Ontario alone where a ban was introduced only in June 2008, 765 convenience stores have closed permanently, that is 8.6% of the total."

The Filthy Engineer said...

The whole issue here as I see it is about control. First Cigarettes, next alcohol, then fattie foods, etc.

The Righteous are trying it on with an easy target first. Once they have
succeded they'll try it on with another social group.

Soon no-one will know what they can't or can do.

Elby the Beserk said...

Philip Davies in March of this years nails the banners of all colours far better than I ever could


The report is certainly a useful contribution to the debate on addiction-not, unfortunately, on addiction to alcohol, but on this Government's and the Health Committee's addiction to the nanny state. They have already helped to dismantle the pub and club industry with their smoking ban. Pubs are closing at the rate of 50 a week-many because of the ban on smoking in public places-and the same fate is being felt by many clubs, such as working men's clubs. It seems that the Health Committee, not satisfied with dismantling the pub and club industry, now wishes to direct its fire in other areas, such as at cinemas and commercial broadcasters, to try to close down those industries. Many sports will also be adversely affected if its recommendations are introduced.

All that would not be so bad if I thought that, in the end, if after all the Committee's recommendations were introduced, its members would say that they were satisfied. The problem, however, as with all these matters, is that the report panders to the zealots in society who are never satisfied. I guarantee that if all the recommendations were introduced, Committee members would, within a few months at most, come back with further recommendations because the previous ones had not gone far enough. This lobby is impossible to satisfy.

Yes!

A great many people in the House seem to want to do nothing else but ban everyone from doing all the things that they themselves do not happen to like. I do not think that I was brought into politics for that. In fact, I am speaking today as a teetotaller: I do not even drink alcohol, but I very much defend the rights of those who do. People who want to enjoy drinking their alcohol responsibly should not have to pay extra on their supermarket shopping just because a few yobs cannot take their drink of an evening.

YES!

I know that we have other business to discuss today so I shall not detain the House any longer. I despair at the endless consensus that there seems to be in the House, which is forever seeking to restrict people's freedoms in this country, to try to stop them doing things that they do legitimately and, in the overwhelming majority of cases, without any problem. For hon. Members to lecture people constantly about what they may and may not do, and what they should and should not say, is depressing beyond belief. The report is more of the same-more of the nanny state.

I know for a fact that the moment the proposed measures are introduced, the zealots represented on the Select Committee will be back for more, and back for more again. They are never satisfied. Dr. Taylor said that he wanted the Government to go a little further and do a little more. Unfortunately, he and the people whom he represents always want the Government to go a little further and do a little more.

Wild applause.

I fear that despite the hon. Gentleman's moderate approach to alcohol, the arguments made by others that 40,000 people a year die from drinking alcohol mean that people want to ban that, too. They do not have the courage of their convictions, however, because they do not think that people in their local working men's clubs will tolerate being told that they cannot smoke or drink any more. It is not what they believe that affects what they say; what counts is whether they think that it will be acceptable to people in their local working men's clubs.

The hon. Gentleman has indicated that whatever measures are taken on any of those issues, the zealots will always want to come back for more; they will never, ever be satisfied. I therefore urge the Government to ignore those siren voices and base their decisions on evidence and the real world-and evidence and the real world alone.

Elby the Beserk said...

March 2010 : Philip Davies MP nails the banning zealots

What he said.

Belinda said...

I understand the EU consultation on tobacco regulation to be largely whether participants prefer member states to be responsible for their own tobacco policy or whether they prefer the EU to legislate for the whole of Europe. I shall be answering that member states should have authority over their elected representatives and no global governance in tobacco control should be allowed. Thanks for spreading the word on this consultation.

Elby the Beserk said...

March 2010 : Philip Davies MP nails the banning zealots

What he said...

AKQJ10Bungle said...

See the usual self rightous have appeared. How great pubs are now the smokers aren't in there, of course they only go in once a week or so, no doubt just for an orange juice or a glass of lemonade, then wonder why its shut a month later.
Ofcourse, prior to the smoking ban there was a no-smoking pub - oh surprise it went out of business.

Still can't see why we can't have fresh air in one side of a pub and extractors in the other and allow natural convection to do its thing.

Also find it a little irronic that in Belgium a bar if they sell less than 30% of there revenue as Food can allow smoking, silly me, probably so all the Euro MP's can have a smoke with there lunch.

As for the comments on herolin etc - legalise it, as a smoker i'm taxed for enjoying myself why shouldn't they, goverments looking for more revenue.

While were at it - bring back hanging too. Free up some space in the prision system, easier ride than the dole - three squares, tv, mediacl care and a roof over your head. Know where i'm going when i'm too old to take care of myself (assuming i make it there ofcouse and don't die early and save the goverment even more of my money that i've paid in)

Elby the Beserk said...

Link posted as I got an error message when I posted the full article - though to seems to have been posted.

Apologies - tho' now you have the link.

Time to start banning the banners.

Sean Haffey said...

Let's be clear: smoking kills about 100,000 people a year in the UK. And it's a pretty rotten death, too.

Now, of course people may decide to enjoy smoking at the risk of that awful form of death, and much shorter life. That's where freedom of choice comes in.

However, it is bizarre that we should allow the vendors of these lethal products to advertise them, thereby gaining new customers of a product that is both lethal and addictive.

liz said...

@ trevorsden ..... you make the point for us. We are NOT children. I don't need you to save me from a bus thank you - You live till you're 173 if you wish (and good luck with your elderly care when you do ). If I want to smoke, it's none of your damned business. I am not so addled that I am unaware of the many and various (big pharma) 'cures' on offer. I choose not to take them because i ENJOY smoking and have no intention WHATSOEVER to give up.EVER. Stick that in your pipe...

and BTW - advertising IS already banned.

liz said...

.... Other than that - thanks to Iain for having the guts to post this and risk the vitriol from those who hate freedom of choice - (well - for smokers... not them ... that wouldn't be fair ....)

Johnny S said...

The Thai Government has acknowledged that smoking is increasing among both women and adolescents despite the display ban. According the World Health Organisation, smoking prevalence in Thailand has increased almost 5 percent since the ban on displays were introduced in 2005.

In Canada, the Provinces with the longest running bans, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, have both seen increases in youth smoking. Ontario, which has the best reductions, achieved these before bringing in a display ban.

The government of New Zealand recently rejected the introduction of display bans because there was no evidence to support them.


Your local pub may have survived the smoking ban but will your local corner shop (maybe incorporating the only Post Office for miles)survive a tobacco display ban?

Sandy said...

Live and let live appears to be a recurring theme. I can't understand why we let the EU have any say in what it's "citizens" can consume.
Relax the smoking ban to allow landlords to make decisions for their own businesses.

davidbean.org said...

Some of the pro-ban comments on this thread are so ridiculously overblown I'm left wondering whether they're intended as parodies. "Sod human rights", says Peter, "so long as we can reduce smoking". First of all it's human liberties, Peter, not human 'rights', but secondly why, exactly? I don't consent to live in your world; I don't consent to have you make my choices for me. That you attempt to exercise such authority over me against my will is an act of violence.

Smoking tobacco is a lawful and legitimate activity. Attempting to curtail adults' freedom to participate in it is not legitimate. Consuming other drugs is currently not a lawful activity, which is why it is futile to attack Iain's assumed position against the legalisation of other drugs as inconsistent.

Nevertheless, I do agree that prohibition, as a control strategy for any consumer good that authorities have decided need one, always and inevitably fails, and in the case of drugs it has tragically failed, at the cost of countless hundreds of thousands of lives ended or destroyed as a direct result not of the drugs, but of the illegality. Under these circumstances it should be patently obvious which direction we need to move in, and it's not that of extending the failure to tobacco, no matter what you violent, evil authoritarians want.

Matt Davies said...

Being a non-smoker, it churns my stomach seeing the fascist authoritarian non-smokers demanding their own way all the time.

Why can't they just sod off and start their own pubs etc, instead of expecting someone else to provide their perfect world for them.

Rab said...

"As a non-smoker I genuinely can't understand why you *have* to smoke when you go to the bingo... it might be nice, but to stop going altogether seems to be throwing the baby out with the bathwater."

What's so hard to understand; if you make an activity less enjoyable then people WILL DO IT LESS. Business drops, if it drops enough then the bingo hall closes and everyone loses out.

I guarantee a few years from now some teetotal idiot will be claiming that it might be nice for some people to drink alcohol in a pub, but to stop going because you're not allowed to is throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Mr. A said...

I'm with Ian 100% on this.

Apart from the fact that the evidence from countries that have tried plain packaging seems to show that smoking rates amongst the young INCREASE after such measures, it is sheer common sense that people do not smoke because of the packaging. They smoke because of peer pressure and because they enjoy it. If anything, such a measure will be a boon to smokers as they will be able to smoke cheaper brands without the embarrassment of people noticing that they are smoking Poor-Brand #1 rather than Marlboro.

In addition, passive smoking IS a myth. Just look at the studies. 10% show evidence of harm, 10% show a protective effect (!) and the rest show no link between second hand smoke and ill health AT ALL. Just because ASH and their cronies have infiltrated every level of the Department of Health and have a marketing and PR budget of millions (if not billions, when you consider their links with and funding from International Aganecies and the Big Pharma companies), doesn't mean that everything they say is true. Just look at the science - it is out there, in peer-reviewed journals. Just take the effort to look it up!

And if the evil hand of Big Pharma can be seen anywhere, it is behind these new EU regulations. They are after nothing less than the global nicotine market, and they have dupes in Parliament fighting for them to get, in this case starting with Europe. If this is not the case why did their puppets at ASH lie about the efficacy of the non-pharmaceutical Alan Carr method, a method of quitting which has been proven to work many times better than Nicotine Replacement Therapy? (Although of course ASH had to apologise later). Why is it that they are seeking the banning of electronic cigarettes when there is not one single case of ill-health caused by them despite being used by millions of people for several years now? In addition, there is no toxicological evidence - the only by-product of such devices is water vapour. Yet the Pharma companies want them banned. Make no mistake this isn't about health, it's about money and all the pharmaceutical companies want is the nicotine market to themselves and they are using their puppets in ASH (who are in turn using the intolerant, useful idiots who desperately need to feel as if they can pick on someone and who have no argument save that an odour is not to their liking) to achieve this aim.

The groups in Tobacco Control are amongst the most influential and powerful groups in the world, and they are as sinister as sin. If only this argument WAS about something as pedestrian as having a fag in a pub!

This measure NEEDS to be fought or we'll end up like the States where ASH come up with rubbish about smoke travelling down electricity lines or their version of the Chief Medical Officer saying things like "One wisp of smoke can kill you instantly. Even if you are healthy!" Even anti-smoking Americans are now starting to think, "Hang on, that's clearly rubbish. Have they been lying to us about this before?

Mr. A said...

I'm with Ian 100% on this.

Apart from the fact that the evidence from countries that have tried plain packaging seems to show that smoking rates amongst the young INCREASE after such measures, it is sheer common sense that people do not smoke because of the packaging. They smoke because of peer pressure and because they enjoy it. If anything, such a measure will be a boon to smokers as they will be able to smoke cheaper brands without the embarrassment of people noticing that they are smoking Poor-Brand #1 rather than Marlboro.

In addition, passive smoking IS a myth. Just look at the studies. 10% show evidence of harm, 10% show a protective effect (!) and the rest show no link between second hand smoke and ill health AT ALL. Just because ASH and their cronies have infiltrated every level of the Department of Health and have a marketing and PR budget of millions (if not billions, when you consider their links with and funding from International Aganecies and the Big Pharma companies), doesn't mean that everything they say is true. Just look at the science - it is out there, in peer-reviewed journals. Just take the effort to look it up!

And if the evil hand of Big Pharma can be seen anywhere, it is behind these new EU regulations. They are after nothing less than the global nicotine market, and they have dupes in Parliament fighting for them to get, in this case starting with Europe. If this is not the case why did their puppets at ASH lie about the efficacy of the non-pharmaceutical Alan Carr method, a method of quitting which has been proven to work many times better than Nicotine Replacement Therapy? (Although of course ASH had to apologise later). Why is it that they are seeking the banning of electronic cigarettes when there is not one single case of ill-health caused by them despite being used by millions of people for several years now? In addition, there is no toxicological evidence - the only by-product of such devices is water vapour. Yet the Pharma companies want them banned. Make no mistake this isn't about health, it's about money and all the pharmaceutical companies want is the nicotine market to themselves and they are using their puppets in ASH (who are in turn using the intolerant, useful idiots who desperately need to feel as if they can pick on someone and who have no argument save that an odour is not to their liking) to achieve this aim.

The groups in Tobacco Control are amongst the most influential and powerful groups in the world, and they are as sinister as sin. If only this argument WAS about something as pedestrian as having a fag in a pub!

This measure NEEDS to be fought or we'll end up like the States where ASH come up with rubbish about smoke travelling down electricity lines or their version of the Chief Medical Officer saying things like "One wisp of smoke can kill you instantly. Even if you are healthy!" Even anti-smoking Americans are now starting to think, "Hang on, that's clearly rubbish. Have they been lying to us about this before?

Mr. A said...

I'm with Ian 100% on this.

Apart from the fact that the evidence from countries that have tried plain packaging seems to show that smoking rates amongst the young INCREASE after such measures, it is sheer common sense that people do not smoke because of the packaging. They smoke because of peer pressure and because they enjoy it. If anything, such a measure will be a boon to smokers as they will be able to smoke cheaper brands without the embarrassment of people noticing that they are smoking Poor-Brand #1 rather than Marlboro.

In addition, passive smoking IS a myth. Just look at the studies. 10% show evidence of harm, 10% show a protective effect (!) and the rest show no link between second hand smoke and ill health AT ALL. Just because ASH and their cronies have infiltrated every level of the Department of Health and have a marketing and PR budget of millions (if not billions, when you consider their links with and funding from International Aganecies and the Big Pharma companies), doesn't mean that everything they say is true. Just look at the science - it is out there, in peer-reviewed journals. Just take the effort to look it up!

And if the evil hand of Big Pharma can be seen anywhere, it is behind these new EU regulations. They are after nothing less than the global nicotine market, and they have dupes in Parliament fighting for them to get, in this case starting with Europe. If this is not the case why did their puppets at ASH lie about the efficacy of the non-pharmaceutical Alan Carr method, a method of quitting which has been proven to work many times better than Nicotine Replacement Therapy? (Although of course ASH had to apologise later). Why is it that they are seeking the banning of electronic cigarettes when there is not one single case of ill-health caused by them despite being used by millions of people for several years now? In addition, there is no toxicological evidence - the only by-product of such devices is water vapour. Yet the Pharma companies want them banned. Make no mistake this isn't about health, it's about money and all the pharmaceutical companies want is the nicotine market to themselves and they are using their puppets in ASH (who are in turn using the intolerant, useful idiots who desperately need to feel as if they can pick on someone and who have no argument save that an odour is not to their liking) to achieve this aim.

The groups in Tobacco Control are amongst the most influential and powerful groups in the world, and they are as sinister as sin. If only this argument WAS about something as pedestrian as having a fag in a pub!

This measure NEEDS to be fought or we'll end up like the States where ASH come up with rubbish about smoke travelling down electricity lines or their version of the Chief Medical Officer saying things like "One wisp of smoke can kill you instantly. Even if you are healthy!" Even anti-smoking Americans are now starting to think, "Hang on, that's clearly rubbish. Have they been lying to us about this before?

Mr. A said...

I'm with Ian 100% on this.

Apart from the fact that the evidence from countries that have tried plain packaging seems to show that smoking rates amongst the young INCREASE after such measures, it is sheer common sense that people do not smoke because of the packaging. They smoke because of peer pressure and because they enjoy it. If anything, such a measure will be a boon to smokers as they will be able to smoke cheaper brands without the embarrassment of people noticing that they are smoking Poor-Brand #1 rather than Marlboro.

In addition, passive smoking IS a myth. Just look at the studies. 10% show evidence of harm, 10% show a protective effect (!) and the rest show no link between second hand smoke and ill health AT ALL. Just because ASH and their cronies have infiltrated every level of the Department of Health and have a marketing and PR budget of millions (if not billions, when you consider their links with and funding from International Aganecies and the Big Pharma companies), doesn't mean that everything they say is true. Just look at the science - it is out there, in peer-reviewed journals. Just take the effort to look it up!

And if the evil hand of Big Pharma can be seen anywhere, it is behind these new EU regulations. They are after nothing less than the global nicotine market, and they have dupes in Parliament fighting for them to get, in this case starting with Europe. If this is not the case why did their puppets at ASH lie about the efficacy of the non-pharmaceutical Alan Carr method, a method of quitting which has been proven to work many times better than Nicotine Replacement Therapy? (Although of course ASH had to apologise later). Why is it that they are seeking the banning of electronic cigarettes when there is not one single case of ill-health caused by them despite being used by millions of people for several years now? In addition, there is no toxicological evidence - the only by-product of such devices is water vapour. Yet the Pharma companies want them banned. Make no mistake this isn't about health, it's about money and all the pharmaceutical companies want is the nicotine market to themselves and they are using their puppets in ASH (who are in turn using the intolerant, useful idiots who desperately need to feel as if they can pick on someone and who have no argument save that an odour is not to their liking) to achieve this aim.

The groups in Tobacco Control are amongst the most influential and powerful groups in the world, and they are as sinister as sin. If only this argument WAS about something as pedestrian as having a fag in a pub!

This measure NEEDS to be fought or we'll end up like the States where ASH come up with rubbish about smoke travelling down electricity lines or their version of the Chief Medical Officer saying things like "One wisp of smoke can kill you instantly. Even if you are healthy!" Even anti-smoking Americans are now starting to think, "Hang on, that's clearly rubbish. Have they been lying to us about this before?

Mr. A said...

I'm with Ian 100% on this.

Apart from the fact that the evidence from countries that have tried plain packaging seems to show that smoking rates amongst the young INCREASE after such measures, it is sheer common sense that people do not smoke because of the packaging. They smoke because of peer pressure and because they enjoy it. If anything, such a measure will be a boon to smokers as they will be able to smoke cheaper brands without the embarrassment of people noticing that they are smoking Poor-Brand #1 rather than Marlboro.

In addition, passive smoking IS a myth. Just look at the studies. 10% show evidence of harm, 10% show a protective effect (!) and the rest show no link between second hand smoke and ill health AT ALL. Just because ASH and their cronies have infiltrated every level of the Department of Health and have a marketing and PR budget of millions (if not billions, when you consider their links with and funding from International Aganecies and the Big Pharma companies), doesn't mean that everything they say is true. Just look at the science - it is out there, in peer-reviewed journals. Just take the effort to look it up!

And if the evil hand of Big Pharma can be seen anywhere, it is behind these new EU regulations. They are after nothing less than the global nicotine market, and they have dupes in Parliament fighting for them to get, in this case starting with Europe. If this is not the case why did their puppets at ASH lie about the efficacy of the non-pharmaceutical Alan Carr method, a method of quitting which has been proven to work many times better than Nicotine Replacement Therapy? (Although of course ASH had to apologise later). Why is it that they are seeking the banning of electronic cigarettes when there is not one single case of ill-health caused by them despite being used by millions of people for several years now? In addition, there is no toxicological evidence - the only by-product of such devices is water vapour. Yet the Pharma companies want them banned. Make no mistake this isn't about health, it's about money and all the pharmaceutical companies want is the nicotine market to themselves and they are using their puppets in ASH (who are in turn using the intolerant, useful idiots who desperately need to feel as if they can pick on someone and who have no argument save that an odour is not to their liking) to achieve this aim.

The groups in Tobacco Control are amongst the most influential and powerful groups in the world, and they are as sinister as sin. If only this argument WAS about something as pedestrian as having a fag in a pub!

This measure NEEDS to be fought or we'll end up like the States where ASH come up with rubbish about smoke travelling down electricity lines or their version of the Chief Medical Officer saying things like "One wisp of smoke can kill you instantly. Even if you are healthy!" Even anti-smoking Americans are now starting to think, "Hang on, that's clearly rubbish. Have they been lying to us about this before?

Mr. A said...

The thinking of these people is highlighted well by Trevorsden:

"In what way Mr Dale are individuals capable of making up their minds about an addictive drug - one that will kill them?

If you saw a child making its mind up to walk in front of a bus - would you leave it to its own devices?"

The difference is Trevorsden, I am not a child. I am an adult, I am a voter and I am a higher rate tax-payer who pays the Government handsomely day-in day-out in tobacco duties and other revenues. Who the Hell are you to presume to look after me as if I'm an infant? How dare you even think you can impose your ill-thought out belief system on me!

Socialism in a nutshell, and shameful that some people who presumably see themselves as Conservatives could even begin to start thinking the same way.

admin said...

Well done, Iain.

I'm from Bury in Lancashire and the smoking ban has devastated traditional local pubs in my area.

All it's done has kept smokers at home where there is no ventilation or fire safeguards that would have come with enclosed smoking areas.

As with these latest proposals - they are a waste of time and money and an insult to freedom of choice.

liz said...

@ Sean Haffey
100,000 deaths due ENTIRELY to smoking ? Really ? Sez who, Sean ? How do you know how smokers die ? My Nan - a smoker- keeled over with a heart attack at the tragically early age of 82. Never knew a thing about it. My cousin, a non smoker, got skin cancer and died a nasty death aged 32. Probably served her right for sunbathing eh? What do the 'righteous ones' like yourself die of ? Living ?? And how do you die ?? Do non-smokers get a 'nice death', and 'slip away' peacefully in their sleep, surrounded by loving friends and family and go to heaven for being so good?
and btw - as stated - advertising is ALREADY banned. Somewhat limp thinking though to hide cigs under a counter when the same children who will supposedly be 'protected' by such measures see smokers outside all the time thanks to the ban. Nothing like forbidden fruit to pique the interest....

Steve said...

All governments seem to want to treat us all as children. They accept pseudo science from originations like ASH. What next, alcohol looks as if it’s next up, then driving.

If smokers want to meet in a pub or restaurant that is advertised as smoking premises then they can only harm themselves and others that know the risks which, with second hand smoke, are very low.

It should be the government’s job to inform not to legislate against anything that only harms the individual or others that know the risk.

Smokers pay far more in tax and lost pensions than they need in health care. I could object to paying for sports injuries, through the NHS, but I don’t.

Johnny S said...

Rumour has it that the EC is demanding a ban on the display of Christmas presents which appeal to kids. It is claimed that their display feeds the kids' 'addiction' to expensive electronic gadgets, causing 124.95746% of their parents to go over their credit card limit (to be confirmed once the evidence has been fabricated).

It is also claimed that this 'addiction' is further fuelled by wrapping these highly expensive toys in brightly coloured wrapping paper and placing them underneath the Christmas tree on full display to all, including kids in the pre-'I want a new X-box' age-group.

The witch from Essex said...

Can someone please tell me what the problem is with having adult only indoor venues staffed by smokers for smokers please ?
I think that the answer will probably be that smokers need to be punished for their filthy habit and deserve less shelter than pigs.
Pigs by Law must have at least 95% shelter from the elements and smokers must be LESS than 50% enclosed.
Syas it all really doesn't it ?

Higham Band Club said...

The bottom line is, it is the greedy, faceless, drugs company accountants that are calling the shots over smoking not the politicians, they are just lackeys for them. They do not care if people smoke or not only that they are raking it in hand over fist. Keeping people smoking is in their interest but so is people attempting to quit. Without smokers, there would be no one to buy their price inflated smoking cessation products. Money talks and as long as they are 'all right Jack, they don't care a fig for the businesses they destroy or the fabric and quality of life of anyone but their directors and shareholders. Should it be to their profitable advantage to advocate smoking as beneficial and socially bet your sweet ass the advertisements would be on the bill boards tomorrow. This situation has been coming for years.

rodyk said...

If the smell didn't bother you and your clothes didn't stink, would you still hate that people should have a right to smoke if they want to?
Now tell me, would you support a ban on soda? Seem ridiculous? Watch what happens in 10 years time if you keep supporting the removal of individual rights. The mayor of NYC, who already banned restaurants from using certain fattening oils, now wants to impose a 'sin-tax' on sodas. That's step one.
Just remember your position here when something you like to do that has possible health risks gets taxed or banned altogether.

footballcharlie said...

Does anybody remember the days when the majority of families spent most of their lives in one small room with parent(s) smoking and with the smoke blowing into the room from open fires. The children raised in those days had very few allergies and are the healthiest generation ever?

Large Melot Please said...

For those who have disingenuously attempted to link Iain Dale's comments to someone who would also want to decriminalise drugs, their position is untenable, as tobacco is legal whereas other drugs are not.


However, let's tackle the issue of other drugs head on.


The war on drugs - cocaine, heroin, etc - has failed, and failed miserably, because prohibition doesn't work. However, prohibition has most certainly helped criminals to prosper. Ask yourselves the question: where would the Colombian and Mexican drugs barons be if it were not for prohibition? The criminals supply the product to fulfil the demand.


In the late 1920s, America banned alcohol. What happened? Gangsters stepped in to provide it and this resulted in all sorts of very dangerous and unregulated goods being foisted on the public. (In the UK today, the government's expressed wishes to further tax alcohol will create a similar situation again.)


Due to excessive taxation on tobacco in the UK, an aspect of both backdoor prohibition and government avarice, the criminals have yet again stepped in to fulfil the need. Now, there are completely unregulated tobacco products available in nearly every city and town in the UK.


The criminal element should be removed from the sale of alcohol and tobacco and also those from the sale of those drugs which are currently unlawful. Those who persist in prohibitionist stances and attitudes need to think far more seriously about their position. Simply trotting out the age old and useless prohibitionist clich├ęs is irresponsible and very stupid!

Basil Brown said...

Have signed.

I'd have some respect for the anti-smoking movement, were they actually interested in harm-reduction. But they're not. They have persistently blocked research into safer cigarettes and are lobbying against the miracle product of our generation:- the e-cig. The antio-smoking quangocracy are funded by our taxes and big Pharma, who they also invest our tax-money with.

One of the main reasons I've stopped smoking is because I don't want to help fund these appalling people with their dissemination of exaggerations, half-truths, lies and intolerance. Though I don't smoke anymore, my ashtrays are still out for visitors who do. Anything less would be bad manners.

Stop the bullying nanny state and stand up for adults' freedom of choice.

david lang said...

The smoking ban wasn't designed to improve public health, its part of the continuing policy of demonising smoking. Its deliberately punitive.

We could have had the freedom to choose, but that wasn't the objective.

Gasdoc said...

Please note, regular visitors to Iain's Diary: try and discuss smoking and the language suddenly changes. Anti-smokers are a group of people who attempt to hijack rational debate to peddle their vitriol. They are so LOUD, that no one else can be heard. Also note that their argument is generally ad hominum.

I will simply respond that I agree with Forest, the video, Iain's view on the matter and I applaud Iain's brave decision to put the post on his blog.

karagiannis_dim said...

Their hypocricy lies on the fact that whilst the health fascists do everything to denormalize smoking,they don't do the equivalent actions with drinking!Why? Maybe because big Pharma cannot sell alcohol patches?
Based on their mentality along with prohibition of branding logos or colours on tobacco products,they have to do the same with alcohol products if we assume they are interested in 'our health'and 'our children's health'

If common sense doesn't prevail, we end up mimicking the Americans and their puritan approach on everything!!!

positor said...

It is astonishing how the very vocal anti smoking brigade are unable to see how allowing micro control smokers choices and lives can only lead on to the same action in other areas.
See how drink control is now at the stage that smoking was about 20 years back.
I wonder how many people who enjoy a glass of wine will in time be badgered into beleiving they are the scurge of the earth too.

Daryl in Surrey said...

I have just come home from having a pint in my local "smoke free" pub. The only problem was that it was also "people free". It used to be a crowded place, but no more.

Where will the non-smokers go for a drink when all the pubs have gone out of business?

SHADOW said...

The anti smoking lobby told us time and time again that they stopped going to pubs and clubs was because of so called "passive smoking", the stench of tobacco etc.
Well they got their way and the poor snoker now has to stand outside in the cold and rain, (with a risk top their health), so where are all these self righteous kill joys ?. These establishments should be jam packed with them, instead pubs and clubs are closing at an alarming rate.
Let the licencee decide if he or she wishes to run a smoking or non smoking estabishment. That way we would all (including the anti-smoking lobby) would have the freedom of choice.
For too long the EEC and sucsessive governments have dictated how we should live our lives.
If they get away with the latest proposed ban, rest assured it won't stop there. We have to fight for our rights (or what is left of them).

HairyChestnuts said...

Well said Iain. It's so good to see such an esteemed political blogger speaking out against the anti smoking witch hunt that has raged for so long. I see from the comments that you have provoked the antis wrath for doing so, but that is proof enough that you are right.
Their bigotry and persecution of innocent smokers has destroyed the social fabric of British society. Where once we proudly lived in a free and tolerant country, we are now forced to endure the misery of bully state nannying.
Were the anti smokers to deploy the same level of venom and hatred against any other minority, they would be arrested, but the government is only too keen to sanction the persecution of smokers.

Lyn said...

Tobacco advertising has not been permitted for years. This is about displays of tobacco products on the shelves of legitimate business who sell such products. Apparently brightly coloured packages encourage kids to want to smoke!

All this will do is cost retailers, particularly the small, individual ones, more than they can afford, even if they have the space to hide the products and so more people will be put out of business. It will also open up the black market as plain packaging is much easier to copy than the current branded packaging and then who knows what smokers will be smoking!

All smokers are asking for is choice; not to 'harm' non smokers, although this harm has never been proven and certainly never did me or my parents any harm as we were growing up. In fact, the generation that are living the longest ever are those that smoked, heavily, when they were younger and also grew up in smoking households, so where is the logic? If smoking and SHS were so deadly, howcome my parents and grandparents have and/or are living to well into their 80's and beyond?

Vehicle fumes are far more deadly, as another post here says, but that does not stop those who are 'holier than thou' regarding smokers from driving their cars and often large gas guzzlers at that!

jfsebastian said...

This proposed legislation is yet another example of the increasing interference of the state. Adults should be free to make their own informed decisions in life, whether they are perceived to be wise or unwise choices by others.
Removing the branding won't deter anyone, it's just another attempt to stigmatise smokers.

The most irrational part of the legislation is the proposal to ban "e-cigarettes". They don't produce any harmful smoke so can't possibly harm anyone else in the vicinity. The anti-smokers (as opposed to non-smokers) always shout the loudest but never use logic in their arguments. They complain about the smell that gets on their clothes. Fair point, but if smokers are given separate, closed rooms with proper extractor vents it can't possibly affect them.

As for the actual risk associated with so-called passive smoking, the evidence is non-existent. The most rigorous research has provided findings that are considered "not statistically significant" ie no proof either way.

George Speller said...

All pubs are privately owned. Dictating against the use of a legal product is an offence against property laws. Pub owners should be able to choose for themselves whether allow smoking. It's nobody elses business. Non-smokers should have to content themselves with the (presumably huge number of) pubs that would have a voluntary ban, meanwhile smokers could exercise their right of choice to go to a smoking pub. What's the problem?
As for denormalisation we just fight back harder. It's our nature as smokers. But remember, drinkers etc - you're next!

superioranalyst said...

I gave up cigarettes twenty years ago. But I've been totally mortified by the way governments (all colours) and the EU have pursued and denormalised the smoking of a perfectly legal product. Now, it seems, that the same denormalising process is being applied in other areas of what we had always regarded as personal freedoms. The pressure on people who are overweight (I'm not), for example, is similar to that on smokers. Drinkers are under pressure to 'conform' and it appears that having more than one child is next (I have four!).

Really, these are all areas of personal freedom and we don't need local authorities, the NHS, so-called charities (subsidised by tax payers), governments, politicians, the EU ... and loads of other righteous types interferring with personal freedom.

If the government, EU, etc want to assault these personal freedoms, why don't they simply make tobacco, alcohol, transfats, fast-food, children ... etc ... illegal or subject to individual personal licences for consumption? Or maybe they will one day soon.

Sign the petition (I have) or 'they' might come for you next!

Sean Haffey said...

>liz

Yes 100,000 a year dying purely from smoking - some of it second hand smoke. See for example here. Plenty of other sources back that up.

If you choose to smoke, go ahead. But let's not pretend that smoking is harmless. It isn't: it's both addictive and lethal. I don't want advertising encouraging any more people to start smoking.

Jimmy said...

Some right wingers want us to sign a petition to the effect that the state should allow them to carry on killing themselves.

There has to be a catch surely?

David Bruce said...

Too post a short blog comment is hard regarding this topic. I have so much to say.

Let me confine it to, I love my freedom. It is what life is really all about. I choose to smoke. It is a freedom to not choose long life and health over the desire to enjoy a habit with benefits as well as disbenefits.

If the government want our £5 of tax per packet, they should allow us to enjoy them how we wish, in bars and pubs that use a freedom to choose to be a smoker-friendly establishment, with branded packaging, and the ability to select from a display not from under the counter.

If the concern is from kids linking smoking to the sweets as they claim... move the sweets... or do they have to be there to tempt dieters and not be shoplifted by miscreant youths (who probably already smoke).

We are Great Britain. We deserve the freedom of right to enjoy smoking tobacco, if we choose to.

Xopher said...

Where to start?
After many years of reductions of smoking prevalence we were told of a smoking epidemic and measures must be taken to eliminate the immense harm it is causing. It seems now that children have been put at the forefront of their campaign yet until now the anti-tobacco enthusiasts concentrated their efforts on harm to adults! Surely their efforts should have been towards protecting children from the start rather than targeting adults who are of an age to make their own decisions. Could we be seeing underhand tactics from those willing to use any tactic to promote their hatred on those who enjoy a legal activity in a manner that appears to have done little harm to the many (now pensioners) who grew up in ‘smoke filled’ houses and are living rather longer than we’re told they should.
Society had ways of coping with what they agreed were less than desirable habits/activities – they had pubs etc where these activities were hidden from children! Even drinking was more controlled when in the company of relatives and neighbours.
More important than the above is the massive investment behind the claim that smoking is the major cause of avoidable premature death in today’s society – Could there be other causes of today’s illness and death?
Many more thousands of chemicals have been created since the last war than are claimed to be contained in tobacco smoke and, whilst smoking has been in decline there has been an explosion in the use of these chemicals.
We breath in formaldehyde from modern furnishings and even use baby cream that ensures we rub it on our baby’s skin yet all we hear from the anti-smoking experts is the immeasurable but deadly amount that smokers create to threaten the lives of all those who come within sniffing distance.
A popular household spray cleaner is capable of removing rust yet we breath in the vapours and don’t worry what effect it might have on our lungs or skin. We have pungent air fresheners that can make us catch our breath and our eyes water but we don’t worry what effect they might have either
What appears very true is that the deathly effects of secondhand smoke is promoted by the very people who produce other much more dangerous products and, at the same time, promote their largely effective NRT products. It seems now that tobacco control wants the monopoly of all nicotine products.
Very simply we have wasted valuable resources chasing a single group’s hatred and, as a result, failed to invest in real medical achievement. How can it be that we are falling behind so many less developed countries that are making real progress in treating modern day ills. Because of the misdirecting of valuable funding we are far from the top of any ‘health treatment’ league and, as we learned today, India (with how much investment?) is now at the forefront of modern heart surgery.
Here endeth the first page of what could so easily be many volumes of comment.

Brian said...

The bravery of those arguing in favor of the status quo (EU restrictions) against a minority's attempt at arguably futile resistance is astonishing.

As if those in power with all the cards and limitless power to persuade with propaganda need sneering assistance from mindless enablers.

Well done. Stamp out non-conformity. It's dangerous.

Xopher said...

continued……….Many more thousands of chemicals have been created since the last war than are claimed to be contained in tobacco smoke and, whilst smoking has been in decline there has been an explosion in the use of these chemicals.
We breath in formaldehyde from modern furnishings and even use baby cream that ensures we rub it on our baby’s skin yet all we hear from the anti-smoking experts is the immeasurable but deadly amount that smokers create to threaten the lives of all those who come within sniffing distance.
A popular household spray cleaner is capable of removing rust yet we breath in the vapours and don’t worry what effect it might have on our lungs or skin. We have pungent air fresheners that can make us catch our breath and our eyes water but we don’t worry what effect they might have either
What appears very true is that the deathly effects of secondhand smoke is promoted by the very people who produce other much more dangerous products and, at the same time, promote their largely effective NRT products. It seems now that tobacco control wants the monopoly of all nicotine products.
Very simply we have wasted valuable resources chasing a single group’s hatred and, as a result, failed to invest in real medical achievement. How can it be that we are falling behind so many less developed countries that are making real progress in treating modern day ills. Because of the misdirecting of valuable funding we are far from the top of any ‘health treatment’ league and, as we learned today, India (with how much investment?) is now at the forefront of modern heart surgery.
Here endeth the first page of what could so easily be many volumes of comment.

Janet said...

I've signed the petition, of course.

C.S. Lewis on the nanny state:

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."

In this case, the robber barons (pharma) have enlisted the support of the moral busybodies. I still haven't figured out why it is more MERITORIOUS to use the nicotine gums and patches supplied by pharma than smokeless tobacco or e-cigarettes. The addiction is the same; it's just not FUN and nowhere near worth the money. That's why they have to keep the nannies ACTIVE.

Jonny63 said...

I have signed.
I will not vote for any party that further restricts the freedom to smoke (I have stopped voting Labour because of the smoking ban).
I will support any reasonable party that seeks to allow smoking in pubs and clubs in controlled, separate environments.
The attack on smoking is an assault on our liberties based on junk science peddled by zealots.

shaftmonde said...

Okay, so a minority dislike the smell of smoke. That's their own preference, nurtured by ASH who profit from funding by us the taxpayers, and Big Pharma from cessation sales.
These brainless babies should stay away from smoke-filled places and patronise only non-smoking establishments.
Instead, they have the effrontery to demand that the whole world conforms to their own prejudices, leaving no room for the 20+% of the others who actually enjoy smoking.

Ironic too (or moronic) that they still keep banging on about the so-called harm from 'passive smoking' without even bothering to check the facts, (unless they actually believe it to be harmful).
There has never been a death from secondary smoking. No really, unless you believe the fiction of those who are paid to say it.

No, they would like the freedom to go into a pub, drink a mind-altering substance having well-documented secondary death and violent effects.

Doesn't it make more sense to allow indoor smoking everywhere, and make fresh-air fiends go outside (in any weather)to enjoy the fresh air?

junican said...

160 countries signed the 'International Convention of Tobacco Contol...' so the UN has been given 'authority', which is why the EU also has a rabid tobacco control department in the EU - not really much to do with the EU directly - a sort of 'add on'. This is also the reason that the Health Dept is riddled with tobacco controllers (to the extent that ASH has people actually working in the Health Dept 'to assist').

These 160 countries' representatives (perhaps unknowingly) gave away THEIR freedom and OURS also along with it. If this is not true, what on earth is the EU doing involving itself in each individual nation's internal affairs?

timpedder580 said...

Well done Iain. you have resisted the bullying methods of the anti tobacco lobby and had the courage to speak out.

It's fatuous to compare hard drugs with nicotine. Heroin, crack etc are far more addictive. They are mood altering and require professional help to quit. Addiction to real drugs completely takes over an addicts life, leading to serious criminal acts to fund the habit.

Fight the Health Stazi bullies! Like all zealots they are a vile breed who wish to control what the rest of us are rightfully doing.

This underlines that it's not so much smoking we should be quitting. It' Europe.

timbone said...

Thanks Iain, and I appreciate your support even though you know that a blog with the magic word 'smoking' will attract all the soap box 'repetive strain pontificators' with sentences littered with words like 'obnoxious', 'stink', 'filth' and 'rancid' to name but a few - thanks for the compliment non-smokers.

I have resisted the usual unresearched comments about passive smoking, a term which first cropped up in the 1930's in...no, go and look it up for yourself.

Then of course we have the comment about Bingo, the commenter seeming to miss the point that whatever his/her non-smoker reasoning, the places are dying like smokers...well, according to them.

Which brings me to Sean's comment
"Let's be clear: smoking kills about 100,000 people a year in the UK. And it's a pretty rotten death, too."
I have seen several figures, some higher, some lower. About 12,000,000 smokers, mmm, and they all die a rotten death, do they? and how many non smokers die peacefully in their sleep of old age?

One final point, if you have read this far, just to prove that this 59 year old smoker who rarely goes to the doctor believes in truth - nobody smokes in the Houses of Parliament - they can, because it is a Royal Palace so is exempt from civil law, which the Health Act 2006 is, but there is an agreement that they CHOOSE not to.

John said...

Isn't it a bit mad trying to hide cigarette packets in shops, when the smoking ban has vastly increased the visibility of people actually smoking now smokers aren't allowed to hide away inside?

Heidi said...

I agree. Smokers won't be deterred from smoking with these measures. An individual has to willingly make the decision to quit.

I quit smoking 5 months ago by the cold turkey method and feel great.

vincent1 said...

Thank you Iain -
Petiton signed Simon, thank you for the link.Illegal drugs come in plain packaging so I am told, the kids know where to get hold of them better than the adults. I and many others cannot afford to be loyal to a brand any more, so what do we ask for then if they are "hidden". A kids favorite game is "hide-and-seek" or they love the thrill of banned substances, they will love this one, along with the bootleggers. But ASH and others know this of course, they say they are doing it for the "chiillldren". Very strange way of doing it IMOP.

Great comments by many - loved Large Merlot please.

Fausty said...

How can you be a Conservative and at the same time, support a ban of this kind?

Alex said...

Can only echo the comments re decriminalising drugs. Exactly the same principles apply...

Sean Haffey said...

>timbone

I didn't say all smokers die a rotten death. That's clear from the extract you accurately quoted.

And having had a father who gradually died of a series of strokes over 18 months, I am painfully aware that there are other ways to die which are far from pleasant.

It nevertheless remains a fact that about 100,000 smokers a year will die as a result of their smoking and that for these people the death is pretty vile. They may decide that it's a fair trade off for the pleasure that smoking gives them during their life, of course. Too often, they are not aware of the consequences before it happens to them.

Consequently I am against encouraging people to smoke, whether overt encouragement such as advertisements or more subtle such as attractive packaging.

DaveA said...

Pulmonologist Dr. Jerome Arnett speaking in 2008 on passive smoking. Climate change abuse of science anyone?

"In addition, influential anti-tobacco activists, including prominent academics, have unethically attacked the research of eminent scientists in order to further their ideological and political agendas. The abuse of scientific integrity and the generation of faulty "scientific" outcomes (through the use of pseudoscience) have led to the deception of the American public on a grand scale and to draconian government overregulation and the squandering of public money.

Millions of dollars have been spent promoting belief in SHS as a killer, and more millions of dollars have been spent by businesses in order to comply with thousands of highly restrictive bans, while personal choice and freedom have been denied to millions of smokers. Finally, and perhaps most tragically, all this has diverted resources away from discovering the true cause(s) of lung cancer in nonsmokers

http://www.heartland.org/policybot/results/23399/Scientific_Evidence_Shows_Secondhand_Smoke_Is_No_Danger.html

Petronius Arbiter said...

Many of those who are happy to have seen smoking banned in `public places' seem to have missed the point being made by those campaigning for recognition of smokers' rights. Contrary to what the anti-smoking lobby would have you believe, the vast majority of smokers are far more considerate than they are given credit for and few, if any, are asking for things to be returned to the way they were before the ban. Most smokers recognise that those who do not wish to be exposed to smoke have a right to be protected from it - but the ban has gone much further than this. Smokers are now not even allowed to gather together in private smoking clubs where the question of protecting those who wish to be protected does not arise (There is no shortage of potential members, premises or willing staff)!

Regardless of whether one is personally in favour of smoking or not, it clearly cannot be right to outlaw smoking between consenting adults in this way. I have even heard given the incredible excuse that such private smoking clubs ` .... discriminate against the non-smoker'! This is like saying that hospitals discriminate against those who can't stand the sight of blood or that a hang-gliding association discriminates against people who don't like heights!

To campaign against an activity which may adversely affect others who do not like it may be justified as standing up for their right not to be so affected. However, to campaign against an activity which affects only willing participants is nothing more than unwarranted, meddlesome interference and to go so far as actually outlawing an activity on this basis is nothing short of state bullying.

The kind of legislative process which resulted in the introduction of the ban on smoking (and a great deal of other unpopular legislation in recent years) raises the fundamental question as to whether such acts are a proper use of government's power. It is not enough for government to exercise its right to act as the guardians of authority. We have a right to demand that they also act as the champions of our liberty.

The necessary degree of respect for any law can only be achieved by ensuring that the law in question has the total or, at the very least near total, support of those whom it affects. A government that acts in any other way is simply a tyranny. This bullying of the people must stop and be replaced by the more inclusive balanced approach that we see in several other countries.

By the way, I'm not a smoker myself.

Petronius Arbiter said...

Many of those who are happy to have seen smoking banned in `public places' seem to have missed the point being made by those campaigning for recognition of smokers' rights. Contrary to what the anti-smoking lobby would have you believe, the vast majority of smokers are far more considerate than they are given credit for and few, if any, are asking for things to be returned to the way they were before the ban. Most smokers recognise that those who do not wish to be exposed to smoke have a right to be protected from it - but the ban has gone much further than this. Smokers are now not even allowed to gather together in private smoking clubs where the question of protecting those who wish to be protected does not arise (There is no shortage of potential members, premises or willing staff)!

Regardless of whether one is personally in favour of smoking or not, it clearly cannot be right to outlaw smoking between consenting adults in this way. I have even heard given the incredible excuse that such private smoking clubs ` .... discriminate against the non-smoker'! This is like saying that hospitals discriminate against those who can't stand the sight of blood or that a hang-gliding association discriminates against people who don't like heights!

To campaign against an activity which may adversely affect others who do not like it may be justified as standing up for their right not to be so affected. However, to campaign against an activity which affects only willing participants is nothing more than unwarranted, meddlesome interference and to go so far as actually outlawing an activity on this basis is nothing short of state bullying.

The kind of legislative process which resulted in the introduction of the ban on smoking (and a great deal of other unpopular legislation in recent years) raises the fundamental question as to whether such acts are a proper use of government's power. It is not enough for government to exercise its right to act as the guardians of authority. We have a right to demand that they also act as the champions of our liberty.

The necessary degree of respect for any law can only be achieved by ensuring that the law in question has the total or, at the very least near total, support of those whom it affects. A government that acts in any other way is simply a tyranny. This bullying of the people must stop and be replaced by the more inclusive balanced approach that we see in several other countries.

By the way, I'm not a smoker myself.

Petronius Arbiter said...

Many of those who are happy to have seen smoking banned in `public places' seem to have missed the point being made by those campaigning for recognition of smokers' rights. Contrary to what the anti-smoking lobby would have you believe, the vast majority of smokers are far more considerate than they are given credit for and few, if any, are asking for things to be returned to the way they were before the ban. Most smokers recognise that those who do not wish to be exposed to smoke have a right to be protected from it - but the ban has gone much further than this. Smokers are now not even allowed to gather together in private smoking clubs where the question of protecting those who wish to be protected does not arise (There is no shortage of potential members, premises or willing staff)!

Regardless of whether one is personally in favour of smoking or not, it clearly cannot be right to outlaw smoking between consenting adults in this way. I have even heard given the incredible excuse that such private smoking clubs ` .... discriminate against the non-smoker'! This is like saying that hospitals discriminate against those who can't stand the sight of blood or that a hang-gliding association discriminates against people who don't like heights!

To campaign against an activity which may adversely affect others who do not like it may be justified as standing up for their right not to be so affected. However, to campaign against an activity which affects only willing participants is nothing more than unwarranted, meddlesome interference and to go so far as actually outlawing an activity on this basis is nothing short of state bullying.

The kind of legislative process which resulted in the introduction of the ban on smoking (and a great deal of other unpopular legislation in recent years) raises the fundamental question as to whether such acts are a proper use of government's power. It is not enough for government to exercise its right to act as the guardians of authority. We have a right to demand that they also act as the champions of our liberty.

The necessary degree of respect for any law can only be achieved by ensuring that the law in question has the total or, at the very least near total, support of those whom it affects. A government that acts in any other way is simply a tyranny. This bullying of the people must stop and be replaced by the more inclusive balanced approach that we see in several other countries.

By the way, I'm not a smoker myself.

Petronius Arbiter said...

Many of those who are happy to have seen smoking banned in `public places' seem to have missed the point being made by those campaigning for recognition of smokers' rights. Contrary to what the anti-smoking lobby would have you believe, the vast majority of smokers are far more considerate than they are given credit for and few, if any, are asking for things to be returned to the way they were before the ban. Most smokers recognise that those who do not wish to be exposed to smoke have a right to be protected from it - but the ban has gone much further than this. Smokers are now not even allowed to gather together in private smoking clubs where the question of protecting those who wish to be protected does not arise (There is no shortage of potential members, premises or willing staff)!

Regardless of whether one is personally in favour of smoking or not, it clearly cannot be right to outlaw smoking between consenting adults in this way. I have even heard given the incredible excuse that such private smoking clubs ` .... discriminate against the non-smoker'! This is like saying that hospitals discriminate against those who can't stand the sight of blood or that a hang-gliding association discriminates against people who don't like heights!

To campaign against an activity which may adversely affect others who do not like it may be justified as standing up for their right not to be so affected. However, to campaign against an activity which affects only willing participants is nothing more than unwarranted, meddlesome interference and to go so far as actually outlawing an activity on this basis is nothing short of state bullying.

The kind of legislative process which resulted in the introduction of the ban on smoking (and a great deal of other unpopular legislation in recent years) raises the fundamental question as to whether such acts are a proper use of government's power. It is not enough for government to exercise its right to act as the guardians of authority. We have a right to demand that they also act as the champions of our liberty.

The necessary degree of respect for any law can only be achieved by ensuring that the law in question has the total or, at the very least near total, support of those whom it affects. A government that acts in any other way is simply a tyranny. This bullying of the people must stop and be replaced by the more inclusive balanced approach that we see in several other countries.

By the way, I'm not a smoker myself.

Lyn said...

Petronius Arbiter - Thank You!

It is terrific to see a non smoker using common sense in respect of the smoking ban and one who is willing to articulate your opinion so very well.

As you rightly say, the majority of smokers are not asking for a return to pre-ban, although even then, apart from pubs, it was difficult for smokers to find venues they could smoke in; but we are asking, as you point out, for choice. Venues which are non smoking for those who want 'clean' air and venues that permit smoking.

If smoking venues had the air filtration systems that are talked about here and elsewhere, then the air in the smoking venues would, in fact, be cleaner than non smoking venues without such filtration. It is not just smoke that can cause problems, but exhaust fumes as well as the many chemical cleaners used in these premises and closed doors do not prevent the toxins from vehicles entering these premises, or even our homes.

Zanbanz said...

This is fantastic I signed the petition. I hope this goes somewhere generally because I'm a smoker by choice and I don't see how a law making body has the right to directly interfere with aspects in my life.

Louise said...

The persecution of people who choose to smoke has already become totally unacceptable in any civilised society. It is no longer about health but it is very much about left wing political parties wanting to take anyway freedom of choice, run people's lives and generally nanny everyone to death.

Smokers are the only section of society who can be openly discriminated against which is probably why people who get off on bullying have chosen them because they are an easy target.

julesbme said...

Thankyou Mr Dale,for you courage in posting this on your blog,courage I'm sad to say, most smokers haven't found yet. I'm a smoker with no intention of giving up until I CHOOSE TO! yes thats right, being hounded, ostracised, bullied, nagged, called vile names and all that's shamefully condoned and even encouraged in this country today, isn't going to make one bit of difference to my decisions, my freedom of choice is intact. I won't allow the proposals and current bans to affect me, it's all you out there who are rubbing your hands together with glee and victory who should be worried. If you allow these constant attacks on people's rights and the constant unjust interference by the powers that be, to continue, it'll be your turn next because where does it end? If a government decides it doesn't want you to do something no matter how legal, whats to stop them encouraging unlawful discrimination and scaremongering us into ostracising and bullying you until you to make you stop?

Bathtub said...

On the basis that it may annoy a great many self-righteous people and those who appear inexplicably over-anxious about my welfare, I'm seriously considering going back to smoking after giving up four years ago.
These proposals are an outrageous attempt to curtail freedom of choice and modify behaviour without any evidence they will deliver benefits. If that doesn't send a chill down your spine, it damn well should. Something you enjoy may be next up.

Jonathan said...

The proposal to ban electronic nicotine delivery mechanisms just shows that all rationale has gone from the argument. It's yet another 'because we don't like it' issue. There's lots of things I 'just don't like' too, but what happened to tolerance of your fellow man?

m-anna said...

We can discuss this over and over again. In the end what matters is the right to choose ! For smokers and non smokers alike. If governments
are enabled to take one right in the name off whatever they are most likely going to strip you off another right in the future. That is a given ! Already they are closing in on us. 1984 is but a split second away. If you don't stand up for individual freedom for all When you start to exclude people on the base of their habits
this will become a grim world we live in. Instead of polarisation between groups we need dialogue .
I am 54 now and I have seen more rights taken away from me than I want to remember.........