By Blad Tolstoy
Well, we told you so. Yes, read all about it, the whole sorry story about the massive increase in cigarette smuggling going on in the UK.
The whole thing is presented here, the smuggled and counterfeit tobacco market is booming:
Cost to UK from cigarette smuggling - Daily Telegraph
Will they be able to control it? Not on your nelly. The war against drugs has failed, so what do they expect will happen with a product millions of times more popular?
Prohibition and excessive taxation always opens doors for criminals.
When will the politicians learn the lessons? The war against smokers is now a guaranteed failure.
Am I pleased? From one perspective, yes, in that it's satisfying to be proved right (yet again). From another perspective, no, why would anyone wish to encourage the growth of criminal markets and what about safeguarding young people from mixing with criminals?
Anyway read on...
Monday, August 31, 2009
By Blad Tolstoy
By Blad Tolstoy
I should like to draw your attention to this letter by John Wesdorp Dip CAH PNLP (that means he's a hypnotherapist and no big deal) who wants all the supermarkets to stop selling tobacco products to save the poor "addicts" from themselves.
Abolish the Sale of tobacco products in Supermarkets - Usprwire
Note the commonly quoted figures, repeated ad nauseam and unsubstantiated by fact, which Wesdorp (self confessed antismoking activist) repeats:
"Every day, over 40,000 young people around the world start smoking. One third of those will eventually die (at what age please) from the effects a smoking related disease as a result of taking up the smoking habit. Those young people are persuaded by multi-billion pound tobacco marketing campaigns that specifically targets adolescents by making smoking look rebellious or even by portraying smoking as hip and a fashion statement."
Here is a right old piece of subterfuge as it implies that children will die as children when most smokers die over the age of 75. We all know this one don't we? It's one of the oldest cons in the book.
And, how about:
"The commercial sale of tobacco products is a remnant of the 20th century when an estimated 200,000,000 (200 million) people died prematurely as a direct result of smoking tobacco products. This number of deaths exceeds the total of all those killed in two world wars, the holocaust, plus all other wars, insurgences, invasions and other military activities. Those deaths from smoking occurred in all ranks of society and tragically included many prominent and talented people in the business community, politics, show business and public life."
Given that no-one really knows how many people die or do not die from smoking, then these figures are sheer fiction of an unprecedented scale. The fact is that smoking has never been proved to be uniquely responsible for anyone's death, hence it is impossible to generate any reliable figures on deaths at all. No, no-one is saying that smoking cannot kill you, but if you have no solid proof that it uniquely responsible for anyone's death, then its a simple logical point that no-one can possibly know how many people die from it.
Wesdorp has also been written about here too:
Offers Smokers Help That Does Not Work
Here, he makes the claim that 70% of British smokers desperately want to give up. This again, is straight out of the ASH handbook. How does he know how many smokers want to give up? How does ASH know? How can anybody possibly know? In fact, the reverse is now happening for, as opposed to wanting to give up, more and more smokers, fed up with the nagging, harassment and intrusions by self-appointed health dictators like Wesdorp and ASH are digging in their heels with even greater determination.
But of course, the nub of the issue is that Wesdorp is "Managing Director" of No Smoking Again, an organisation which is not listed as a company at Companies House and therefore the title "Managing Director" maybe more than a little pretentious. It may be the case, of course, that the name Wesdorp uses is just a company trading name and his "company" is actually listed by another name. However, if not, then he will be guilty of trying to make himself sound more important than he is.
Check it out for yourselves:
But, more to the point, Wesdorp peddles hypnotherapy to stop you smoking.
No Smoking Again - Wesdorp Hypnotherapy!
This is the most successful method for stopping he says. Again, how does he know? In fact, whereas Wesdorp is correct to outline the very low success rate of nicotine replacement therapy, the most successful method for giving up is cold turkey, way and ahead on medical figures (see, for example: http://www.whyquit.com/)
As it happens, this writer tried hypnotherapy many years ago and found it absolutely useless.
If the supermarkets have any sense, they'll ignore Wesdorp because if they don't sell tobacco products then the smugglers will, and all Wesdorp will have done is further assisted the creation of a burgeoning criminal market.
Revealed 2bn cost to UK from cigarette smuggling - The Telegraph
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
by Blad Tolstoy
You know, I used to like Liverpool - a lot, but not any more.
Yes, I remember when I first became acquainted with that city at the beginning of the 1970s. People told me that if you asked someone the way to anywhere they'd almost take you there they were so friendly. And they were, I tried it and was duly impressed.
Since then, I have noted all the character stripping changes but still enjoyed the city very much until recent years. I recall all those Sunday visits to The Tate in Albert Dock to take in the interactive art exhibitions and all the excellent selections of work by artists from the last 100 odd years. My trips were usually completed by a visit to the Tate eaterie where I would end my repasts with an appreciative cigarette. What splendid afternoons they were.
As this century progressed I became aware that something was changing. The noises coming from the City Council became more politically correct and strident. Then came the announcements concerning smoking bans, I remember them first in about 2003-04. Yes, Liverpool was to become a "modern" smokefree city, leading the way in the UK in stamping out the ghastly habit, or so a progression of snotty wac zealots announced.
Well, we know that a smoking ban has since been implemented and, contrary to the promises of the zealots, it has still not bedded in and sits uncomfortably on the broken back of our pub industry. However, this is not enough damage for Liverpool City Council, which now wants to ban anyone under the age of 18 from seeing films with smoking in them - just in case they become corrupted.
One can be forgiven for taking a sharp intake of breath at this gob-smacking stupidity. If anyone wanted to find a way to make smoking even more attractive to minors well, this is it. If you want to make smoking more glamourous, just keep banning it. Moreover, how will stopping under 18s from seeing films in the cinema stop them from seeing CDs and videos? Puleease, get real you idiots!
Lastly, I ask myself, is this the beginning of yet another New Age Industry? Will Liverpool become the centre for film airbrushing? Will Humphrey Bogart have his fag replaced with a stick of rock? Will Audrey Hepburn suck a banana? Who knows? Perhaps they'll just have to make do with a slug clone.
We have not plugged Christopher Snowdon's book yet. It has been widely publicised by Forest, so it is possible that some of you have already read it. It can be communicated to our readers that Uncle Bald has read it and gives it a 5 star rating!
The "Dark Market" is a full expose of the campaign by ASH and Co to promote the removal of cigarette displays in shops. Snowdon got hold of all the e-mails between ASH, the DofH, Cancer Research UK and their consultants in Canada using the Freedom of Information Act.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
In these hard times, many of you may be thinking of rolling your own cigarettes. I've tried it and sadly tired of the fiddliness involved. It seemed like I had sprouted a couple of extra thumbs. I'm having another go and I found a charming and humorous website with some hints and tips for the beginner. It truely is an art and I don't might admitting that I would love to master the one handed roll-up. So all those who have tried and failed and all those who fancy a go here's a link to some wise words.
Cigarette rolling instructions.
Perhaps we should trade our experiences. I personally find the trickiest bit getting the edge of the paper to tuck in prior to forming the tube. I think my thumbs are too big. I have got a rolling machine, which I can use a filter in, but the filter is just too small for the size tube the machine makes. Hey Ho!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Monday, August 10, 2009
Sunday, August 09, 2009
Posted by Gasdoc at 8:05 pm
I've just discovered Professor Jeremy Richards a professor of history from the US of A. He kindly directed me to an article he wrote in August 2008 for the Heartland Institute. In it he sumarises the history of smoking bans and profers us his quite optimistic vision for the future.
Here is the link to this superb article...
Saturday, August 01, 2009
Fri Jul 31, 11:41 AM
ISTANBUL (Reuters) - A restaurant owner in southwest Turkey was shot dead after he tried to prevent his customers from smoking to comply with a new law on the use of tobacco indoors, Hurriyet daily said on Thursday.
A fight broke out after Hidir Karayigit, 46, ordered a group of customers to extinguish their cigarettes when they began smoking at his "meyhane," a traditional restaurant that serves alcohol, in the town of Saruhanli, Hurriyet said.
One of the customers shot Karayigit four times after he took away the group's cigarettes, said witness Hamza Havutcu, Karayigit's business partner who was also shot and wounded.
Turkey's government on July 19 introduced a nationwide ban on indoor smoking, including bars and restaurants, despite the fact that half of Turks aged between the ages of 15 and 49 smoke; one of the highest rates in the world.
"I'm deeply saddened that the first smoking-ban murder occurred in our town," Saruhanli Mayor Veli Yalcin told Hurriyet. "They either shouldn't have outlawed smoking or they should have outlawed alcohol along with smoking."
(Writing by Ayla Jean Yackley; Editing by Jon Hemming)