Shortly after the Smoking Ban in 2007, a couple of brave publicans stood up and refused to comply. One was Nick Hogan in Bolton and the other was X in Blackpool. I suppose that there were others who never made the headlines. Certainly, several publicans were fined, although not to the full extent, for permitting smoking after time when the pub doors had been locked – what is known as a ‘lock in’. In theory, the idea was that anyone staying behind after the end of legal serving time was a ‘personal guest’ of the publican. I vaguely remember a publican asking me, sort of secretly, if I would like to stay behind as one of his ‘personal guests’. I said, ‘thanks but no thanks’ – I did not want to get pissed, tempting though the offer was. Such ‘lock-ins’ were targeted by the Zealots and raids were made my Local Authority Enforcers supported by the police. Headlines in local newspapers. No one ever pleaded ‘Not Guilty’ of the crime of ‘permitting smoking in substantially enclosed, public premises’. I suppose that their lawyers told them that they had no chance of succeeding. They may have been well aware that the Smoking Ban was much the same as a declaration or war. It had been a long time in the preparation, and all angles had been covered. The Big Battalions of The Law were primed and ready for the war.
But Nick and X stood out because they did not just permit ‘after time’ smoking. They made a terrible error. They said, “Smoke at your own risk”. Erm, no. They did not understand that it was THEY who were at risk. It was THEY who were targeted by the legislation. THEY became serious criminals (in the sense of being fined very large sums) for not enforcing the wishes of the Zealots. AND IT IS SHAMEFUL BEYOND IMAGINING THAT THE LAWMAKERS AT THE TIME PERMITTED IT. For example, suppose that road designers made a mistake which resulted in fatal crashes occasionally. The mistake might only been seen in retrospect. It might not of been visible at the time. That reminds me of The Comet aircraft. It was a beautiful jet aircraft, but no one knew that the welding of the structure could not stand the forces imposed upon it.
The same applied to Concord and Concorde (the Russian version). I think (ignore my ignorance) that those aircraft were subject to forces, at supersonic levels, which were unknown. Whatever, super-sonic aircraft no longer exist.
Is it not odd that airlines using Concord or Concorde did not collapse into bankruptcy.?How did they stand the cost of obsolescence? Who paid to scrap the aircraft?
We ‘crowd funded’ the collection of £10,000 to free Nick Clegg. He was grateful. I am sure that he has done his best to repay that trust. Perhaps we should expect nothing more that gratefulness. But we funded him to make a point, which was that we would not be cowed. It did not matter what he did thereafter.
Did Nick Hogan and X do well for themselves after the ignominy? I do not know. If they did, then that is great news. It is important to accept that when we crowd-fund something that we do not expect a reward for doing so.
Readers will know that I have been reading ‘The Gulag Archipelago’. I still have not finished it. Millions of Russians paid the ultimate price for their bravery in opposing the more outlandish demands of The Soviet. Failure to achieve a target was YOUR fault, and not that the target was unachievable.
We are seeing the same impossibilities today with Tobacco Control. The Zealots are becoming more and more hysterical. As they see it, and what they are paid to see, is that elected Governments are not getting into line, which is what they expect to happen with the latest ‘Tobacco Control Plan’. Until that Plan is executed, they have nothing to do. Their survival depends upon new initiatives and plans.
For years and years, Health Ministers, right to the top, have tortured, persecuted and robbed smokers, and Chancellors of the Exchequer continue that vile trade. Smokers are the equivalent of negro slaves. They are subhuman and fit for nothing except exploitation.
OK. I am one of those subhumans, even though I am not black.
So ‘the price of bravery’, in terms of being soldiers, is clear. Death and danger are inherent in that concept.
But discussions of ‘climate change’, ‘smoking’, ‘ecigs’, etc, should not have antagonisms as exposed by ‘Climategate’.
WHAT ARE THE FACTS?
The whole deposition of Tobacco Control is based upon non-facts. ‘Smoking causes lung cancer’. Erm, no. Very few smokers succumb to LC.
But we must be brave. And being brave is not difficult. In simple terms, it means displaying your cig as you make your way to the pub door. Do not be ashamed.
Being Brave, in modern times, need not be physical. Perhaps it is more important to be brave in your mind.