Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Out of sight, out of their minds

Those nasty smelly things that really make many of us sick have decided to ban displays of cigarettes. Yes, MPs have decided that we need to have temptation put out of our way by hiding fags. As I've said before, I'm not a smoker but these knee-jerk reactions that result in banning anything that offends or could be a bit dangerous leaves me feeling really uneasy.

Cigarettes are still legal. The government doesn't have the balls to ban them because it's too addicted to the taxes they raise. However, the government has decided to ban smoking in enclosed spaces and is now going to ban displays of cigarette packets by making shops keep the evil weed under the counter. Experts believe this will stop people smoking.

Let's think about this logically, shall we? Illegal drugs aren't displayed or even available for sale anywhere legally and yet drug consumption has risen exponentially for the past four decades. So how will hiding cigarettes help stop smoking? Won't it just make them even more exciting and mysterious to kids?

By all means, let's discourage smoking which is, after all, a disgusting, smelly and unhealthy pastime. But where does all this banning end? How about alcohol? What about meat? Should we ban butter? Where do we stop?

If we carry on like this there won't be any displays in shops and everything will be under the counter. Shopping is soon going to be as mad and hilarious as the Two Ronnies sketch involving fork handles. We'll have to play charades to get what we want. Won't someone treat us like grown-ups?


  1. Will this apply to Duty Free?

    For some German ex-colleagues on frequent business trips "Duty Free" fags seemed to be the raison d'ĂȘtre for their visits, maximum allowance in both directions.

    So many people use their allowances to the limits that if this applies to Duty Free shops with the aim being to make fags an under the counter item then they'll need an exceedingly cavernous counter or two or three. If the exercise succeeds in cutting the spend on fags then that'll cut the operator's revenues and then they'll increase some other charges, fees or tickets to keep up their dividends & bonuses.

    Knock-on effects all round.


  2. It's the Law of Unintended Consequences. Or Brown's Law as it's now known.

  3. I seem to recall that they banned alcohol once in America. The result: bootlegging, speakeasys and a massive growth in violent organized crime.

    I'm also put in mind of a Denis Leary sketch where he satirizes a campaigner who wants the warnings on cigarette packets bigger: "You could have the whole packet as a warning, put a skull and crossbones on and use 'Tumour' as a brand name and we'd still run out to buy them."

    Let's hear it for our wonderful coalition government that none of us voted for!

  4. Indeed, Neil. What happens to the brains of politicians once they get into power?the Tories were dead against this in opposition. Do the civil servants put something in their water?

  5. "What happens to the brains of politicians once they get into power?"

    That's a simple one mr.TM.

    They are far too busy working out what they can claim for on expenses and the newbie MP's are still trying to work out the house flipping scam.

    Hiding fags below the counter will not make any difference what-so-ever to about 99% of smokers, nor will the unbranded packets.

    Like you said, should they ban butter? (which by the way my diabetic nurse and diatician have both confirmed is better for you than margarine - if used in moderation)

    Maybe they should ban Mc donalds, KFC, burgerking etc. - imaging the fallout from all these companies if the nutters in westminster did something as stupid as that?

    I'll be honest, i enjoy a takeaway now and again, BUT only as a treat about once a month or so. (i used to eat takeaway food 5 days a week at work - but since getting a slow cooker i enjoy home made stews etc.)

    Britain is the laughing stock of the world these days with all the new 'knee-jerk laws' that have been brought in over the years.

  6. nanny knows best now shut up and do as you are told!
    This makes my blood boil and is the reverse of what is needed in these difficult economic times.
    What the government should be doing is encouraging more smoking by lowering the tax, allow more advertising of cigs, encourage more drinking and all the stuff that's "bad" for us with the net result that sales will rise (good for jobs and for the economy) advertising revenue will rise (good jobs and the for the economy) and the populace will be happier, less stress and die earlier meaning the pension black hole is sorted too. Sadly this type of joined up thinking is lacking in the political class.
    Capt. Apollo ( only 1/2 tongue in cheek)

  7. You should be in government, cap'n! Don't think they haven't considered it.

  8. I for one think its quite funny and even though I don't smoke anymore I'm tempted to pick up 10 just for the illicit pleasure of having the shop keeper reach under the counter !!! Wonder what else lurks there?

  9. I'm tempted to take up smoking just to piss the government off. Childish, I know, but the nanny state makes me want to strike back in any small way I can. Let's start a thread on what else we think the government will force under the counter. I'll start things off with:


  10. thank you Traction man but i like you think they should either have the balls to ban tobacco outright on the grounds of public health or leave those who enjoy this legal substance alone. Repeal the smoking in public places ban and allow pubs clubs and the like to decide for themselves, in short allow individuals the responsibility for their life and choices.
    capt. apollo

  11. salt, sugar, marmite, beer, wine, white bread, lottery tickets, cheese, maxim, whatcar etc etc

    Capt. Apollo

  12. Oh yes dear fellow, But alas I am one of those unfortunate people that get pleasure from cigarette smoking... yes I agree its a filthy habit, its also not good for your health and wellbeing, surprises me why the human rights court has not banned it.and my adiction to the evil weed is that strong that it is like a drug... yuk... I'm a smoker for god sake stop supplying me. I for one who needs the use of a medievil rack to keep me away from the fag packet need a ban, but as you say tax is worth billions, great post regards Yachydda.

  13. White flour and coffee could be candidates for banning too!

  14. James May for PM12 March 2011 at 13:29

    Hey TM
    not posted for a while but things here in Southampton are not improving see attached


  15. I think the government should ban everything except...... sprouts cauli and pie! ah...... over boiled over cooked ? hospital food

    job done no more worries TM in fact you're weeks in hospital would equal government nirvana !

  16. Let's just ban government.

  17. Travelling Woman21 March 2011 at 10:49

    Neil Fulwood doesn't remember that about 15 or so years ago they did introduce a brand of cigarettes called DEATH with a skull and crossbones. And yes, I bought them as I was still smoking for England in those days. They were not bad cigarettes and really cool.

  18. History.....

    Sir Frances Drake brought over the evil weed on orders of the Queen , he also brought over the spuds.

    Unbeknown to Drake the natives swapped the good stuff for the evil weed, off he sailed and as a result everyone smoked, even children as young as five.Women smoked the tobacco in clay pipes as did the children.

    Now.... Should`ent we all sue the Royal family for enforcing us all to smoke the feel good factor back in the day ?

    But then again, we all have the given gift of "choice", plus research proves that smoking anything from fags to kippers is damaging to health, especially if additives are included.

    I smoke and also love smoked kippers.

    I know of now six friends who have never smoked, rarely drank, were vegetarians, keen on following a healthy regime and passed away.

    Latest death was a 42 year old, she was rushed in hospital and diagnosed with cancer, one before that was a 33 year old male, never smoked, didn`t drink and died of cancer.

    I have been diagnosed with so many things, none of which I have the symptoms of, it is a "tick box" society we live in, doctors get a high percentage of making a prescription that the pharmacies supply the medication ratio.

    During 2006, everyone who went to the surgeries for what ever complaint to do with illness, there was a massive high on cholestorol, high blood pressure and diabeties, now it is reported that the pharmacuticals made one hell of a boost on this bogus farce.

    The Daily Mail reported we are all the subjects of a bogus scheme.

    Trust no one , not even your doctor, he gets comission outside the sector, evil walks hand in hand.

  19. Hi TM
    This is already happening in Australia. The smokes are covered by doors, and just have prices listed on the front. They no longer have on the packets what strength they are either. I quit 2 years ago, but still feel this is taking away consumer choice