Tuesday, 28 May 2013

In a hole, Ireland keeps digging

It appears that Irish politicians are (yet again) lining up to be guinea pigs for one of tobacco control's back-of-a-fag-packet ideas. I've written a blog post at the IEA about Ireland's dismal record of failure at the hands of bone-headed anti-smoking zealots. Here's a taster...

Grandstanding politicians and headline-grabbing legislation are no guarantee of successful outcomes. Years of slavishly following the 'neo-prohibitionist' model of public health—which ignores the reasons why people smoke in favour of an obsesive focus on petty bans and restrictions—have conspicuously failed to have an impact on the smoking rate. To continue down the path of extremism in the light of this fact suggests the same cognitive dissonance that was displayed last week by Welsh anti-smoking campaigners who complained that smoking prevalence had barely fallen despite the most aggressive wave of tobacco control legislation in the country's history.

Do go read the rest.


JohnB said...

For anyone interested.

Concerning the big island - Australia, that is quickly sinking into the sands of madness, allow me to introduce Peter FitzSimons.

Pete the Ponce is a former rugby player that probably took too many shots to the head in his playing days. Since his on-field brawling, Pete has become something of a celebrity “opinionist”; he’s written a few books, pens newspaper columns, and makes the occasional appearance on “news” TV. Many describe him as a socialist socialite, a socially-connected left-leaner quite partial to the frequent drop of vino and other alcoholic thirst-quenchers. He is also an aggressively avowed atheist who doesn’t want anyone’s religion shoved down his throat.

So why put this opinionated top-end wine-bibber under the spotlight? Well, our good friend Pete – seeker of “social justice” – has made it into the news for somewhat sordid reasons. It appears that Petey Boy signed on to the Master of Ceremonies job for a recent children’s cancer charity-function. What has some people riled up is that, in searching for “social justice”, the already wealthy Petey charged $8,000 for his services (the charity function ultimately made a total profit of $30,000). In addition, as MC he wasn’t all that good. If that wasn’t enough, given a steady intake of [free] plonk during the evening, Petey also made a first-class vulgar ass of himself away from the microphone:

One would think that this oaf would be slow on the moralizing trigger. And maybe he is ….. except for one thing in which he is absolutely sure – Petey is an antismoker. Here’s a reference to some of Pete’s antismoking, alcohol-soaked, punch-drunk “pearls of wisdom”:

But when I say that Petey is an antismoker, I may not be doing proper justice to the circumstance. We would have to say that the opinionated boozer is more that just an antismoker. He’s an antismoking activist.

Enter another piece of oafishness, another pompous galoot – the professor of “public health” [giggle], Simple Simon Crapman. In the following article, Crapman explains how he had nothing to do with a mostly campus-wide smoking ban at Sydney University:

We know that when Crapman says that he does not agree with large-area outdoor smoking bans (e.g., campus-wide), he is lying. There’s Crapman’s signature – on page 2 – of the ASH manual “Guide for a Tobacco Free Campus”:

But I digress. What does Crapman have to do with Pete the Plonkmeister, I hear you ask. Patience, dear ones. Well, while Crapman attempts to divest himself of all responsibility for these baseless, spiteful campus-wide smoking bans, look at whom he points the fickle finger of accusation – none other than Petey Ploppo, another antismoking activist:
“Last year, my university debated the introduction of a ban on smoking on all areas of its campuses, after the senate alumni representative and Herald columnist Peter FitzSimons led the charge….”

Yes! That Peter FitzSimons.

Now don’t be complaining about my raconteur skills. I charged nothing, let alone $8,000.

Smoking Hot said...

Chris, one wonders how this plain packaging in Eire will be addressed re cross-border shopping seeing as all tobacco products bought in the EU will not be in plain packs?

As it stands, the reality is that most tobacco comes into Eire from Northern Ireland ... whether that be from normal retail outlets or the smugglers. The border controls are virtually non-existent and l can't see that changing. Customs are even less present (if that's at all possible) in what is locally known as 'bandit country'.