Monday 27 February 2012

Mission creep

I wrote an article for the Yorkshire Post last week about plain packaging and the phenomenon of mission creep.

The tendency of pressure groups to move towards increasingly extreme positions is a familiar political phenomenon.

When the successful activist can only recapture the intoxicating feeling of victory by finding new causes to champion, the result is “mission creep”.

Take the Smokefree Action Coalition, for example. Originally formed to campaign for the smoking ban, they have since lobbied for graphic warnings on cigarette packs, higher tobacco taxes, a retail display ban and a ban on vending machines. It is a tribute to their campaigning prowess that politicians have capitulated to all these demands, but this string of easy victories has left them scraping the policy barrel.

The link is here if you want to read it all.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I see that a couple of zealots got their comments in quickish - the usual 'vile tobacco company' stuff.

I have started bringing the McTear case in my comments on places like that. Also worth pointing out that ASH ET AL receive over 95% of their funding from Drug Companies and the like.