Thursday, 28 January 2010

Shock trials and smoking police


The German newspaper De Bild is today running a big story about the latest anti-smoking scheme from the European Union.



The EU has declared war against smokers! Brussels wants to eliminate cigarettes with a ‘smoking police’, ashtray bans and high-publicity legal processes against celebrities who enjoy a puff.

De Bild - Europe's best-selling newspaper - is the German equivalent of The Sun so take it with as many pinches of salt as you like, but it says the plans include:

• ‘Smoking police’: The EU states are being asked to set up a system for enforcing the smoking ban, including a system of prosecution. The use of inspectors and enforcement officials is recommended. They will also carry out random spot checks.

• Shock trials: The EU states will be encouraged to carry out sensationalist prosecutions designed to shock the public.

• Ashtray ban: It will be the responsibility of all companies and public services to ensure that there are no ashtrays in the building.

• Celebrities who smoke will also be targeted and exposed publicly as smoking offenders.

• The dossier even defines smoking as including the ownership or handling of a lit cigarette, regardless of whether or not the smoke is actively being inhaled.

Full story here.



12 comments:

Witterings From Witney said...

Chris,

Also in Express Germany:

http://www.express.de/news/politik-wirtschaft/eu-erklaert-rauchern-den-krieg/-/2184/1172372/-/index.html

Anonymous said...

Christopher,

Are you in touch with anyone to obtain the 31 page document mentioned? WS.

Anonymous said...

Hitler's Fourth Reich - accomplished.

Curmudgeon said...

First they came for the smokers...

How appropriate!

Snowdon said...

WS,

Not sure, but could be related to this document.

Chris

JJ said...

Over a year ago I set up a spoof e-petition claiming to be a doctor who had established an anti-smoking patrol watch in my local community.

I suggested reporting offending smokers to our local dentists and GPs, outlining that they should refuse treatment to those smokers flouting the ban.

I ludicrously made the claim that 30,000 people were being killed by ‘passive smoking’ and so on and so on.

I thought this ridiculous nonsense was totally insane. But it appears that it will be arriving on these shores in the not too distant future.

You cannot parody something that has itself become parody.

Mark Wadsworth said...

"Das Bild", actually.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Chris.

From page ten of the document you provided.


"When active enforcement begins, many jurisdictions recommend the use of high-profile prosecutions to enhance deterrence. By identifying prominent violators who have actively defied the law or who are well known in the
community, by taking firm and swift action and by seeking maximum public awareness of these activities, authorities
are able to demonstrate their resolve and the seriousness of the law. This increases voluntary compliance and reduces the resources needed for future monitoring and enforcement."

Appears to be true. WS.

Anonymous said...

Chris,

I'm sending you an email.

-WS

Frank Davis said...

I've covered this as well. And I seem to have found a similar document as the one you suggested to WS.

I get the impression that Bild is not exaggerating.

Why did it break in 2 German newspapers, and seemingly nowhere else?

Anonymous said...

I wonder if this will be the final over-reach which peaks this pogrom?

Anonymous said...

"When active enforcement begins, many jurisdictions recommend the use of high-profile prosecutions to enhance deterrence. By identifying prominent violators who have actively defied the law or who are well known in the community, by taking firm and swift action and by seeking maximum public awareness of these activities, authorities are able to demonstrate their resolve and the seriousness of the law."

I think I'll enjoy watching the first trial under laws like this. Wouldn't a lawyer be able to argue that targetting someone solely for who they are be pretty contrary to human rights. Wouldn't that also include some pretty prominent people with expensive lawyers? Maybe even MEPs/Representatives in various parliaments.

Wouldn't that be fun to watch?