Today, I have been following the proposed Welsh ecig ban in public places with some relish. It is great to see the great and the good of tobacco control falling out. The trouble is that it is the prohibitionists who are in positions of power, and they enjoy using that power. I suppose that members of the Welsh assembly need a ‘fix’ from time to time, otherwise they become agitated. They absolutely need to pass a law. Any law will do.
There was a poll on Wales On Line. I voted that ecigs should not be banned in the same places as tobacco cigs. When I voted, the vote was 97.5% against and 2.5% for.
What surprises me is that ecig shop owners and vapers themselves could not see this coming. We smokers have been shouting it out loud an clear for several years – THEY WILL COME FOR YOU SOONER OR LATER!! You would think that shop owners and even on-line sellers would have made it their business to ensure that customers had a forum on the net for communication purposes. How many vapers are there in Wales, and especially in Cardiff and its surrounds? They need to demonstrate. They should think it terms of the poll tax rebellion. They still hold the high moral ground. They should use it. A home-made placard saying, “I STOPPED SMOKING! LEAVE MY ECIG ALONE! GET OFF MY BACK!” would state the truth. This is not the same situation that smokers found themselves in. Smokers were tricked. The original Bill made exemptions for wet-led pubs and members’ clubs, but that exemption was withdrawn at the last minute.
Vapers can expect the same conditions to apply to vaping in a pub as applies to smoking – vapers will be hit with a small fine, if anything. It will be publicans etc who will be massively punished for ‘allowing’ vaping. It will be publicans etc who will be coerced into becoming enforcers. Publicans in Wales should even now be telling the Welsh Assembly that they will not be tricked again; that they will absolutely not be coerced into being enforcers.
Do you know what? The Zealots might be right about ecigs ‘renormalising smoking’, but not in the way that their propaganda says. Remember that they simply repeat the mantra, “Ecigs may renormalise smoking”. They do not say what they mean by that vague phrase. most of us would imagine the phrase to mean: ‘Because vapers are seen to puff on an ecig and blow a white-ish cloud of water vapour from their mouths, persons seeing that cloud will go to a shop and buy tobacco cigarettes. They will then set fire to the end of the tobacco cigs and blow white-ish clouds of smoke from their mouths’. That scenario, I suppose, would qualify for the description: “Renormalising smoking”.
But there is another way to think about it. Smoking has NOT been denormalised. 25% of the adult population of the UK still enjoy smoking. What has happened is that they have been driven out of the places where they used to be welcome. Tobacco Control is covering up its failure to denormalise smoking. What it is afraid of is that smokers might just possibly start to go back to pubs and use ecigs while they are there. So, if a person who does not smoke talks to a vaper about ecigs, the vaper might say, “I enjoy this ecig. It is OK. But I prefer the real thing. But this ecigs is useful in these circumstances”. What the Zealots want is for tobacco not to be mentioned at all. They want tobacco to be airbrushed out of existence. Why else would snus be banned in the EU apart from Sweden. In fact, it is worth asking who decided to ban snus? What trickery was involved?
That is another problem. It is almost certain that Members of Parliament pass EU regulations merely because the whips tell them to, and the whips themselves do not know what they are telling MPs to vote for. Also, it is pretty certain that Ministers also do not know what the agenda of the Zealots who have infiltrated the Health Dept is. The Ministers are ignorant and powerless since they must accept advice.
Why is the Health Minister, Allison, attending the ASH revelation of the College of Physician’s plans for further torturing of smokers? Has her boss, Hunt, no control over her? Or is she intended to be the ‘fall guy’ if anything goes seriously wrong? Milton was a ‘fall guy’ and so was Subry, but Subry got away with it. I wonder if Allison realises that she is a sucker? She ought to realise that, when she associates with the likes of ASH ET AL, she is associating with Zealots who will cast her aside without a moment’s hesitation. She is a sucker, both for the Zealots and Cameron. He too will cast her aside as soon as she ceases to be useful. The key is that she has no skills, apart from having a good memory.
I just have a feeling. I feel that Health Zealotry is on the wane. MSM reports are not quite as ‘on side’ as they were. That can only become more ‘the norm’, the more that the Zealots fall out.
Forest commissioned a poll via ‘Populus’. The poll showed that over 50% want smoking rooms in pubs. I have a recollection of a pub which had a room described by etchings on the glass of the door as “SMOKING ROOM”, or similar words. That recollection was from around 1959. Such words reflect the ethos at the time, which included the words ‘snug’ and ‘public’ and ‘members’ rooms. There were no laws. Pubs and clubs catered for different groups of people as best they could, and everyone accepted the compromises. No individual demanded special consideration. ASH ET AL have inverted that equation. They have demanded a false equation. They have demanded that 4s -1ns = 0s. I mean, 4 smokers in the company of one non-smoker must equal no smoking. The ‘4s’ can be multiplied by any amount, but the result would be the same: Xs – 1ns = 0s. That is, no matter how many smokers there might be, if one person is a non-smoker, then ALL must refrain from smoking.
The situation is so illogical that it can only be sustained by repeated increases in demands. That is the reason, ultimately, that it must collapse.
Imagine a road with a 30 mph limit. Imagine that almost no one observed the limit. The authorities have only two alternatives – either reduce the limit to 20 mph or increase it to 40 mph (or some such figures). That is, either they give more leeway, or they crack down. In my mind, I see the Welsh ecig ban as liken to the ‘crack down’ scenario. There is no logic to it other than ‘punishment’.
The final piece in the jigsaw was the inept contribution from the spokesperson for the BMA Wales. I think that he might have been a bit slat at. He opined that, because ecigs are called ‘cigarettes’, then they are tobacco products. But if they were called ‘ENDS’ (Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems’), then they would be medicines. I have noticed that more and more of the Zealots are being hung by their own petards. They are definitely losing it. They are becoming mentally unstable and ought to be confined to a mental hospital where access to ‘smoking cessation’ is denied. They could be given patches and gum to bring them back into equilibrium.
Regarding the Welsh ecig ban, I suppose that it is possible for the inhabitants of Wales to begin to take the Assembly seriously. I doubt that more than 10% of Welsh people have any interest at all in what the Assembly does. Perhaps they might start to complain.
That is an interesting idea, and perhaps we do not take advantage of it. The idea is ‘to complain’. You do not need to go any further. Just complain. Complain and complain and complain, and then complain again. The reason is that politicians and Zealots want ‘fait accomplie’. They want ‘finality’. They do not want people to go on at them about what they have enacted. They want it all to be accepted and finalised.
Erm… “NO! ABSOLUTELY NOT! WE WILL FIGHT, AND FIGHT AGAIN, AGAINST THE DYING OF THE LIGHT!” The light is of freedom to amuse ourselves regardless of health obsessions.
I must to bed. It has been fun tonight.