The Iron Triangle

I’ve published posts before about ‘The Iron Triangle’. Of course, it does not have to be a triangle – it could be a quadrangle or pentangle or even more angles. What is important is the word IRON. That word denotes strength.

The Tobacco Control Industry has ensured that it is protected. Largely, this was done by ostracising tobacco companies from any discussions about public health. This exclusion was actually built into the FCTC Treaty. The result has been that any ideas that the tobacco industry might have about health aspects of smoking are not considered. How can you blame such companies for withdrawing completely and totally from even talking about health and smoking? Thus, the way was left open for the anti-smoker Zealots to form their monopolistic industry.

The Iron Triangle consists of (at least) three groups: the charlatans, politicians and regulators. In the group ‘charlatans’ are included almost everyone who makes money directly from persecuting smokers – the academics, Big Pharma, ASH ET AL, newspapers, etc. The other two groups are self-explanatory.

But is the triangle as IRON as tobacco control thinks? Where is the weakest point? Clearly, it is POLITICIANS.

For some reason that I find incomprehensible, Cameron, the UK prime minister, decided that invading people’s private space – the inside of their cars – and smashing someone else’s private property by painting it with acid in the form of ‘standardised packaging of tobacco products’, is ‘feel good politics’. In reality, of course, he is playing political games. Labour said that they would introduce those tyrannies, so Cameron raises the stakes by doing what Labour say they intend to do. It is a game of poker – “Raise and see you”. “SNAP!!!”

Thus is illustrated the weak link. The behaviour of politicians is about as trustworthy and predictable as a snake in the grass or a heroin addict. Why? Voters, voters, voters. I think that I can confidently predict that, sooner or later, someone will stand for election who is opposed to dictatorship, and who will cite smoking bans as his example of what has gone wrong. He/she will cite the exaggerated interpretations of statistics and the lies. He will point the finger at opponent politicians who knowingly created the persecution. He will point to the continuing incidence of lung cancer despite the massive fall in smoking prevalence over the past several decades.

Such a sea-change will require a specific incident to start the conflagration. Who knows what that might be? It could be the New Orleans smoking ban. My reading of US local politics is that change can occur very quickly, if the voters so decide. For example, it is not impossible to visualises the replacement of the current seven people who unanimously imposed the ban with others who would repeal the ordinance. I think that it is much easier for such repeals to take place in the USA than it is in the UK, where such ‘ordinances’ are created at parliamentary level.

I don’t know if anyone remembers the furore, here in Bolton, UK, about the smoking shelters at the local hospital. If you recall, the hospital board said that it would build shelters for smokers if a Bolton News poll produced a majority in favour. The poll did produce a very unexpected majority in favour, but the local anti-smoker zealots rapidly closed ranks and forced the hospital board to renegade on its promise. Around the same time, there appeared a “Wellbeing” assessment for Bolton. As usual, it condemned smoking and alcohol, especially among the poorest, and  opined that those people needed to be spanked. Clearly, it was a Tobacco Control Industry initiative. But, nothing of it has appeared since then. Not a peep, as far as I know. Perhaps the local councillors saw how poisonous the report was as far as their re-election prospects were concerned. But what that incident revealed to me was the extent to which local politics has been invaded by Zealots. I am sure that the same situation exists in the USA. It is a curious thing how the ability to BAN activities seems to attract a certain type of person, who has a simplistic mind, to positions of authority.

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I wonder what determined Cameron to enter politics? I suppose that, if you asked him, he would say that he wanted to improve the lot of Britons. That is a marvellous aspiration. But that aspiration depends NOT upon the opinion of THE MAJORITY. It depends upon what every individual wants. It depends upon what each individual wants, and each individual has the right NOT to be persecuted because he/she wants something that the majority do not want. Thus, if a person opens a bar for smokers, and if the staff are also smokers, and the decision of people whether or not to enter that establishment is there own free choice, then any attempt to alter those free choices is FASCIST.

There is a big difference between ‘totalitarian’ and ‘fascist’. In the Soviet Union, decades ago, Stalin forced the reorganisation of agriculture in Russia. Owners of small areas of agricultural land were forced to give up their ownership to local cooperatives, in the form of government authorities. Thus, the owners became mere employees. I personally have no objection to the idea that the land belongs entirely to THE PEOPLE. To me, that is obvious. No individual can OWN the land, not even Kings and Emperors. But “The People’s Government” can rent out the Nation’s land.

If the value of the land was properly identified, then, for THE PEOPLE, anyone who uses the land can be properly taxed. There can be no such thing as a “Landowner” other than THE PEOPLE. Perhaps the word “Landuser” could be substituted.

According to what I have read, Cameron’s relatives are ripping off we taxpayers for thousands of pounds per an because they pretend to ‘own’ the place where a wind turbine is positioned. Well, any Government which pays such people money is corrupt. Electricity companies must pay land rents to THE PEOPLE.

Readers might misunderstand. I do not mean that a person who buys a house must pay ground rent to the State, provided that the collection of the rent is too expensive to administer. That idea (cost) underpins lots of un-enacted laws.

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Thus it is clear that the laws which are enacted are those which are easiest to be enacted. But, what really, really matters are laws which hardest to enact.

 

 

 

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