Okay, rhetorical question. Fergus Walsh opines on tobacco use and is clearly an advocate of more control. He argues in favour of denormalisation and is appalled by the level of tobacco use in Blackpool. While there may be truth in the claim that higher rates of smoking occur in the more deprived parts of the country, frankly, an individual’s decision to smoke or not to smoke is up to them. And if that means they die earlier, well, that’s the consequence of their decision. It’s not as if we aren’t aware of the potential harm smoking causes – indeed, it is entirely possible that it has been exaggerated for the benefit of tobacco control.
However, history is not something we learn from, apparently. The second comment on Walsh’s piece offers us this gem.
Another option would be make tobacco illegal. Any existing users would be declared addicts, and get their tobacco from the NHS at the current cost. Then there would (hopefully) be no new users.
Well, why not indeed? It has worked so well when tried in the past, hasn’t it?
Why not require a certificate of private health insurance to be presented prior to each purchase of any tobacco product. Such insurance to cover all treatment of any illness that might be caused or aggravated by smoking or being the cause of an illness is others possibly caused or aggravated by passive smoking. Also make it illegal to buy any tobacco product not for one’s own use. And such insurance certificate shall be presneted for inspection to any authorised person if the possession of any tobacco product is suspected and then found to be being carried or stored in any property owned or controlled by a smoking suspect.
The logic is that smokers personally pay the price for their own choices.
Passive smoking also needs to be curtailed: so ban smoking in public, in vehicles, at sea etc. even if the only person present is the smoker.
Smokers could then kill themselves with their vile addiction, but not be able to harm others either financially or health-wise.
The problem with all these ideas is that there will be a black market in tobacco and criminal gangs will make huge criminal profits! (See Prohibition.)
Alternatively perhaps we could put something in the water (or more rationally the cancer sticks / coffin nails) that made smokers violently sick every time the took a puff (or in every twentieth fag)!
Smoking is an addiction, a physiological and emotional addiction so draconian steps will never be completely successful. However we must dissuade the young from taking up the filthy habit so plain packaging is a good idea.
One last wheeze – once we have plain packaging compel manufacturers to put parts of diseased cancerous lungs randomly in every tenth packet rather than their evil product! Then show adds of smokers opening such packets in situations where they are trying to be sophisticated.
There’s so much that is so wrong with that idiotic rant that I really cannot be bothered to dissect it. It stands alone as testament to the sheer fuckwittery of its author (although this one does at least get the prohibition point). This, then, is the psychotic insanity of the anti-smoker laid bare.