Rantings and tirades of a frustrated economist.
Despite the fact that it's another form of control (which I object to); it's probably a good thing. Smoking will be banned in pubs/clubs very soon in Australia, and that's a good thing.I smoked for 12 years, gave up 2 years ago, I still enjoy a smoke every now and again when I drink, but I hate going home stinking of cigarette - so banning it is probably a good thing. Even when I was a full-time smoker, my opinion was the same.At least it won’t be such a burden on the public health system when these people get sick.Let them have their way I reckon - might keep 'em quiet for a while after they win whilst they're busy smoking a few cones over their victory.
I don't want to launch into a tirade about the economic principle of "revealed preference," so I'll try to keep it short:People already have the option of not smoking, or of frequenting establishments that independently prohibit smoking. That such establishments are few, and that people still frequent the establishments that permit smoking, suggests that smoking is not the issue that the health-alarmists make it out to be. If people really cared, they would vote with their pocketbooks. What this is, as you aptly described, is a form of control - in which an exceedingly small minority is imposing its values and beliefs upon the entirety of society.The problem is not the choice that some people make, to which you object -- the problem is that the "Public Health System" has accepted the burden of people's choices.
Frank, you are so missing the bigger picture.
Doink, you ever get the prize money and picture?
Yeah, funny you should ask--- I got it on Monday. I mentioned the award on my blog, it was the first in a series of recent accolades.
Believe me, I do see the bigger picture, and am aware of the implications it has when these people win, have their egos over-inflated, and go and cause other disruptions to society just because they've got nothing better to do.I remember years ago there was a court case, I think it was in Melbourne, where some woman who was suffering from asthma, bitched and moaned that she couldn’t go to pubs and clubs because they're too smoky. Can't remember what her case was (perhaps discrimination or some nonsense?), but it was widely publicised. All I thought to myself was, get over it idiot - you don't have to go there, and not everyone else should have to suffer just so you can have it your way.My folks own a take-away food shop in an industrial area, and they're happy with new legislation that makes smoking illegal in places where food is served. On one hand, they don't wanna piss their customers off by prohibiting smoking in the shop, but on the other hand they didn't really want their shop filled with smoke. The new law, fair enough, took that control out of their hands, but that also meant that they can prohibit smoking in their shop and simply say "sorry buddy, it's the law" to their customers and leave it at that. I’m sure there’s probably a fair amount of pub and club owners who would share the same opinion.I do object to what they’re doing on principle – but I probably do it with my mouth shut, ‘cause I don’t think I’d mind a ban on smoking - mostly because I’m piss weak when it comes to ciggies and that choice should be removed from me :)
Frank:I hate going home stinking of cigarette - so banning it is probably a good thing.I hate the mushrooms. Should the government ban them? Or should I just not eat them? And not go to restaurants that have them on every dish (certain local pizzeria comes to mind)?I don't see why your parents feel that they need a legal ban on smoking in order for them to ban it on their premises.
Wulf: Eating mushrooms doesn't affect anyone else. Smoking affects the people around you - you stink like smoke.If some retard doesn’t service their car, that’s their business – but when it affects the people around them (i.e.: other drivers who cop a whiff of black exhaust smoke before they get the opportunity to put their climate control on recirculate), people complain and call the EPA.If a bunch of fat arses wanna eat themselves to 200kgs, that’s their business, but when they sit next to both sides of you on an airplane, then I’m sure you won’t be “enjoying the flight”. (btw, check out http://franksemails.com/video/badflight.wmv)I never said that the government _should_ ban smoking, I only said that I don’t mind a ban on it.I also never said my folks felt that they _needed_ a legal ban on smoking in order to ban it on their premises. Really, they wouldn’t have minded so much if the ban didn’t take place. All I said was that they were happy that it became legislation because it meant that their shop didn’t stink as much – they never really had a strong opinion on it either way (otherwise they would have banned it themselves).It’s obvious it benefits them because:1) There is no stinky smoke in their shop any more2) They didn’t place the ban, so therefore no customers would be pissed and go to other stores instead.3) Less sh1t to clean up.Despite the fact that it’s someone telling you what you can and can’t do, do you really think they care that people can no longer legally smoke in their shop? I don’t hear them complaining that it violates peoples freedom.Do you really think restaurant owner/operators care that people can no longer legally smoke in their establishments just because some activist said so? I really don’t think they’d care either way. I did a quick search on Google and it says that only around 20 or 25% of the Australian population smoke now, so I don’t think the majority of people here would care that they can’t smoke in restaurants any more.You’re right though – I hate it when some idiot tells me what I can and can’t do just ‘cause it suits them. Instead, cigarettes should be taxed to death (which they are in Australia) and then some so as to pay for the public health costs for the idiots that get sick smoking themselves to death – that’s the way it should be done. At least that way you’re not violating peoples’ freedom and at the same time it acts as a deterrent.
"I never said that the government _should_ ban smoking, I only said that I don’t mind a ban on it."But that's the problem - you're perfectly willing to sit idly by and co-opt other people's freedom of choice as long as it doesn't affect you, or if it confers on you some sort of perceived benefit.
Cap'n:HERE is the proof that I rec'd the award.
doinkicarus:Well I can't argue with that, you're definitely right - my bad. I guess that's a problem in this world - give an inch here and there and the loud mouth no brainers stomp all over you.
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