Politicians Miscalculating the Electorate

ASH ET AL have recently said that smoking prevalence is now at 16.5%. But they will say that, won’t they? It is in their interests to say that. It is not long ago that ASH ET AL said ths smoking prevalence in the UK was down to 20%, whereas the EU said that it was 26%.

Which estimate is trustworthy?

The fact is that it does not really matter. The probability is that occasional smokers will describe themselves as non-smokers. “Never admit that you have ever committed a crime – the admission might come back and bite you!” Is that not what has happened to Trump, apart from the fact that what he said was not criminal? Ten years ago, long before he had any thoughts about standing for President, he took part in a ‘bar-room’ conversation with other guys of a sexy nature. “Oh, look at the tits on that! I’d give it one!” – sort of thing. Just ‘man’ talk in a situation where you have not much else in common other than fancying girls. It happens ALL the time. “Eh, look at that!” has been a cry among men since time immemorial.

But is it exclusive to men? Of course not! I was standing at the bar in a nightclub many years ago, waiting to be served, and standing next to me were two young and attractive women. One of them said to her friend, “God! I could just do with a grope!” At the time, there was a slow dance record on, and many ‘young adults’ were smooching on the dance-floor. Maybe I should have offered my services, but I really wanted a beer. In any case, despite being really nice-looking, she had the aire of a predator, if you know what I mean. If you do not know what I mean, you are in good company because neither do I.


But I must come to the point.

ASH ET AL say that the number of smokers in the population is trivial. It follows therefore that ‘prohibition’ of tobacco products is on the cards. Politicians can safely call for, and enact, prohibition of tobacco.


Well, they can – in just the same way that they have prohibited parents from taking their kids on holiday at times when prices are low enough for them to afford a holiday. I have just booked a trip to Spain. I had to book a period during the half-term schools holiday because my teacher daughter will be available to look after her mother while I am away. It is October. Prices for flights should be at their lowest. But they are astronomical. Why is that? Airlines have taken advantage of the political decision to punish parents who take their kids on holiday during term-time by escalating prices during half-term holidays.

What surprises me about these situations is that people do not see the connections. Or do they? It might well be that 90% of parents do not see the connections. BUT 10% DO.


All the time, the dissatisfied and annoyed part of the population increases. Some smokers, but not all. Some parents, but not all. Some Vapers, but not all. But when you add up all the dissatisfied and annoyed people, you get Brexit.

Almost all politicians SAID, before the vote, that they wanted to ‘remain’. Oh dear! They are stuck with what they said. Most of them are now trying to slither under what they said.

If UKIP could get itself together and stop trying to destroy itself, it could become a real political force. It would need to draw together all those people who, for one reason or another, whether it be smoking, vaping, holidays, duty taxation, 5p charges for plastic bags, global warming, etc, etc, wish to remove NANNY from the State. After all, the basic aspiration of UKIP was to take the UK out of the NANNY Super-state of the EU. If the EU had been benign, then there would have been no need for UKIP.

What illustrated most clearly that the EU was not benign? It was the treatment of smokers. And it should have been OBVIOUS to politicians in the UK Parliament. The EU is not benign. It is tyrannical.

Enough people in the UK saw that, although they would not have the words to describe it. They just knew.


But it goes further. Tobacco Control picked on smokers to be persecuted in order to bring about the destruction of tobacco companies. That is the war – TC versus TC. Smokers are cannon fodder, as are non-smokers. Do non-smokers realise that, if all smokers stopped buying cigs, their taxes would increase substatially? And suppose that drinkers stopped drinking alcohol. Think about how much more teetotals would have to pay in taxes. And suppose that everyone started to go to work on bicycles? What taxes would replace petrol duty? The taxes of the non-smoking, non-drinking cyclist would rise enormously.


Smokers as part of the electorate could be ignored because they are a 20% ish minority. But it is not so simple. That 20% is a very big proportion of voters. If that 20% vote together, then vast changes in the political landscape would occur. Add to that the vapers, and the parents, and all the other people who have been demonised, such as fatties.

All those people need A CHAMPION.

UKIP could become that champion, but it will not do so whilst it elevates turncoat Tories as its best examples of virtue.

Back to basics, chaps! Who are the decent people who are dissatisfied? How are they being ripped off by sin taxes? Who are the ‘Elite’ who are draining our Country’s wealth? The emphasis there is on ‘WHO’. That is the important thing. It is not HOW.


For decades, our politicians have been ever so clever regarding WHAT. Not one word have they ever uttered about WHO.


5 Responses to “Politicians Miscalculating the Electorate”

  1. smokingscot Says:


    I often wonder if Jack McConnell would have included leisure facilities in the Scottish ban had he known that Labour would lose the next election in Scotland – and not come close to regaining power for several decades.

    Or if Blair would have lumped in wet pubs, had he seen the future, not just for the Labour party, but also for his cherished EU!

    There were 33.6 million people who voted at Brexit. Out took 51.9% with 17.41 million. Remain got 16.14 million.

    To change it to a vote in their favour all they’d have needed was just over 600,000 people who saw an advantage in remaining. That’s all it takes, a paltry 600k – and that’s why it’s not terribly clever to piss-off about 10 million of them.

    On a brighter note it also meant the end of Osborne as Chancellor and that “big society” pipe dream

    • junican Says:

      That is my point. In GEs, no one mentions smoking bans. In any case, recent history has shown that smoking bans are not a political football. Almost every MP is prepared to persecute smokers until there are none left.
      Brexit gave smokers the chance to register their discontent with persecution. As you said, it took only 600,000 smokers to swing the vote.
      And yet the politicians have not registered that fact in their collective minds.
      Persecution of smokers has consequences, even if politicians don’t talk about it. It is time that the woke up and realised that the fact that they do not talk about it does not mean that it is not true.

  2. smokingscot Says:

    Re our wee chat about FCTC. Here’s another preliminary meeting you may have missed. Well savaged by Guido and his commentators.


  3. Rose Says:

    For decades, our politicians have been ever so clever regarding WHAT. Not one word have they ever uttered about WHO

    Can you be surprised, after all, it was aimed squarely at New Labour’s core vote.

    Probably embarrassing too.


    ASH applauds 40th ratification of global treaty and calls for immediate ratification by the UK Government.
    01 December 2004

    Deborah Arnott, Director of ASH said:

    “We call on the UK government to immediately ratify the FCTC. Ratification and implementation of the treaty are critical to reducing the death and disease caused by tobacco in our country. Delaying ratification only serves the interest of the tobacco industry.”

    The FCTC contains most of the measures that countries need to take to reduce tobacco consumption. The FCTC obliges countries to:

    enact a comprehensive ban on tobacco advertising, marketing and promotion;
    place large, graphic warnings on cigarette packs;
    ban the use of misleading descriptors such as “light”, “low-tar” and “mild;”
    raise tobacco taxes significantly;
    provide smoke-free public spaces and workplaces;
    compel companies to disclose the contents of tobacco products; and consider using litigation to hold the tobacco industry liable for its wrongdoings.

    In a letter to Tony Blair, ASH urges the government to honour its commitment to ratify the global tobacco treaty without further delay. In addition, ASH is seeking clarification on what planning mechanisms will be put in place to ensure that the UK complies with the FCTC’s requirement of a comprehensive national tobacco control strategy.”

    “While the measures in the FCTC represent a minimum set of tobacco control policies, the treaty explicitly encourages countries to go above and beyond these measures. Strong action on the part of countries will give them the opportunity to reduce the human suffering caused by tobacco and curb runaway costs of tobacco-related health care.”

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