Reality is for the proles

Australia has won the race to be the most feeble and subservient country on the planet by agreeing to cover all tobacco products in plain packaging, as if the colour of the packet makes any difference at all to anyone buying it. All it means is that the packs are now far easier to forge.

The criminal gangs selling the fake packs are not at all interested in the age restrictions applied by almost all legitimate sellers. They’ll sell to anyone. Australia can expect an explosion of youth-smoking any time soon and their politicians and Righteous Banmeisters will not even accept it is happening.

Don’t laugh. The rest of us are not far behind, not far at all.

The Ban is everything. It does work, even when it patently doesn’t, and it has no effect on any business anywhere, even when it obviously does. We live in a world written on pages that Kafka threw out as being far too absurd to be even remotely credible. If there is a God then he must spend all day thinking ‘WTF are they doing now?’ and wondering if he should bother with the redemption business or just torch the whole damn place and start again with woodlice.

In Nova Scotia, a tobacco shop is fighting an order to cover up displays of tobacco.

Read that again. It’s a tobacco shop. It doesn’t sell anything else. All the displays are displays of tobacco. Nobody would go in there unless they planned to buy tobacco. It cannot possibly tempt a non-smoker into smoking because a non-smoker has no reason to go inside or even notice the shop at all.

What should the owner do? Black out the windows? That’s going to attract entirely the wrong kind of customer. Men in grubby coats and pebble-glasses will sidle up to the counter and say “I’d like some *cough* tobacco, know what I mean? The really hard stuff.” They won’t know they’re in the wrong shop. All the displays will be covered and everything is in plain packaging. Just like in their usual haunts.

Ten minutes later they’ll try to return their purchase of a pack of rough shag because it made a hell of a mess of their DVD player, but the shop does not accept sticky returns..

As for smokers, well, if you saw a shop with blacked out windows and a sign saying ‘special offer on rough shag’, would you think to buy your tobacco there?

Remember, all these bans have absolutely no effect on business whatsoever. Even when they do.

Monty Python once ran a sketch called ‘Cheese Shop’ about a shop that sold only cheese but didn’t actually have any. Now they could write ‘Tobacco Shop’ about a shop that sells only tobacco but isn’t allowed to tell you whether they have any. To the political mind, this is what reality looks like. It’s not a joke, this is actually how they see the world and they genuinely believe it makes sense.

I blame Thatcher. Didn’t she start the whole ‘care in the community’ thing? She should have left them all safely locked away. Now they run alleged charities funded by the released contents of the psycho ward, who rob the population to pay for it and who accept every fantasy story as if it came from their own personal head-voices.

Forget building more prisons. Rebuild Bedlam. Every capital city has a handy building that’s already filled with suitable patients. I’m willing to chip in for their daily electroshock therapy. At last, a cost to the taxpayer that we won’t object to.

I know there are antismokers out there who are thinking ‘Yes, you filthy smokers deserve all you get’ and I know they are the ones who would view that cheese shop sketch and think ‘Yes, cheese is fattening, make the shops hide that too’.

No? Oh, of course, they imagine that the persecution stops at smokers. That it can never reach them. They’ve absorbed the politician mindset, they might even have heard the Voices of Absurdity that always say “We just want this banned, Nothing else. Just this. We don’t want to go any further than this. No, no further. Just this.”

“And that. That too, but no further. Just this and that and no more.”

“And the other thing. That’s all we want banned. This, that and the other thing. No more.”

“And…” …so on.

The truth? It never ends. You can be happy to support a ban that doesn’t affect your life but by doing so, you open the door to the lunatics and once they’re in, you cannot get them out.

Suppose there was a ban on male circumcision. It wouldn’t affect me. I am intact in that region and I am not well enough endowed to be able to spare a bit off the end, so I would never consider it. A ban would not affect me in the slightest. I am also not a member of any religion that requires it. It’s true that circumcision provides some lowering of the risk of catching HIV (it’s a lowered risk, not an immunisation so don’t grab the scissors just yet) but my risk is depressingly low anyway and that has more to do with overall appearance and sociability than whether one-eye can wink or not.

I would have absolutely no reason to object to such a ban, but I would anyway. Male circumcision is nothing like female circumcision, which is brutal and nasty and evil. It’s as if God made Man in a mould and sent him out into the world with instructions to cut off a bit of moulding flash. It has no serious damaging effect on anyone, it just means you’re wielding a sword with no scabbard. If it’s done as a baby, those few I know who admit to being de-hoodified say they’ve never noticed it at all.

It’s a big part of several major religions including Judaism and, I think, Islam. Maybe not all variants, I don’t know (or care, really). Snipping the snake’s eyelid certainly has not damaged the reproductive ability of the members of those religions. So it is not a big issue, really.

Female circumcision is a very different matter and I would be happy to see the perpetrators wired up to five hundred volts’ worth of solar panels at midnight and then left facing the sunrise.

Actually, I can get much more imaginative than that. It involves solar-powered drills but I’m saving that one for a story. They start really slowly as the sky brightens… but I digress.

A ban on circumcision with no religious exemptions is clearly aimed at particular groups and it’s something you’d expect Goebbels to have thought up. Not California.

The smoking ban is aimed at a particular group too, and is in fact one of Hitler’s policies (at this point, if you’re about to say Godwin, please write it on a treble fishhook and insert it anally instead. It really was, and still is, Nazi policy. Just live with it, okay?).

Most seem to regard that as just fine and dandy. It is racist to attack anyone who is not white, it is Islamophobic to attack anyone Muslim whether you’re angry about their Muslimness or just because they’ve parked on your cat. It is xenophobic to say “This country isn’t going to the dogs, it went to the dogs years ago and the dogs sent it back” even if you don’t attach blame to any particular race, person or dog.

But you can kick a smoker and that’s okay.

Look behind you, smoker-kickers.

Because no matter how Righteous you think you are, there is another boot aimed squarely at your own arse.

And another behind him too.

Where does it stop? Unless it all stops, none of it does. The choice is simple, do you want reality or the fantasy land of fear and oppression dreamed up by those you must call ‘master’? You can have all of it or none. There is no middle way.

Your choice. Remember that at voting time. Your choice.

27 comments for “Reality is for the proles

  1. john in cheshire
    May 22, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    I’ve been minded for some time now to take up smoking just to annoy the assholes who are trying to eliminate all forms of pleasure from people’s lives.

    • May 22, 2011 at 9:15 pm

      You could get an Electrofag with no nicotine, just flavoured steam. It’s as close to real smoking as a soya steak is to beef – it looks like the real thing but contains none of the real thing.

      But it looks like smoking, and that’s all it takes to set the blood pounding in Righteous ears.

      You can terrify people by chewing a white pencil these days. The fun never ends if you have a cruel mind.

      • May 23, 2011 at 12:06 am

        Terrify people with a white pencil? So long as you take the lead out first. 😈

        • Bollixed
          May 23, 2011 at 5:15 pm

          It is carbon in a pencil, not lead.

          Obviously you did as much fact checking before commenting as the people do behind all the other witch-hunts. 🙄

          • May 23, 2011 at 5:30 pm

            Third hand lead poisoning is where the word, even when used in another context, is harmful.

    • May 23, 2011 at 5:34 pm

      I quit and have no desire to take it up again, but I’m all for annoying the Righteous. Order one of these: http://www.baronbob.com/cigarettepen.htm and walk around holding it between your fingers where you’re not allowed to smoke, and when someone complains you can drop extra gravel in their gearbox by telling them you’re a non-smoker. Bonus points if they do the theatrical coughing thing on their way over to ask you to put your biro out. 😆

      • Jason
        June 9, 2011 at 10:03 pm

        Excellent idea. Everyone sick and tired of the nanny state and government bullying should stick it to them with artificial cigarette look-alikes and carry them around where-ever they go. Will scare the daylights out of everyone and be the perfect non-violent protest – and one everyone can join in on. Fun !!

  2. May 22, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    “You can be happy to support a ban that doesn’t affect your life but by doing so, you open the door to the lunatics and once they’re in, you cannot get them out.”

    THIS!!

    • May 22, 2011 at 9:16 pm

      That?

      • May 22, 2011 at 10:04 pm

        Indeed 😀

        • May 23, 2011 at 12:33 am

          Oh.

          • May 23, 2011 at 5:49 am

            Sorry, Twitter joke 😉

  3. Paul
    May 22, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    The proles increasingly don’t vote though. And see no point. And who can blame them?

    UKIP have made a start but (I’m conjecturing here) I suspect they will only really gain traction amongst those pissed-off people that vote already. What of those that don’t?

    Don’t forget that in UKIP there are a lot of repressed Daily Mail “ban this filth” types in it too – although Farage isn’t like that, quite a few of the members and candidates are. UKIP is a coalition between the Tory Daily Mail-type ban-ban-banners and other more libertarian-minded conservatives, socially at least.

    Lord Pearson and the ban the burqa fiasco, anyone?

    • May 23, 2011 at 12:38 am

      The ‘ban the burqa’ thing was off-putting. Mostly because it seemed they didn’t realise what it meant. France did not ban the Islamic veil. It banned face coverings.

      It’s banned Old Holborn’s mask and Halloween masks and fancy dress in public and probably face paint too. Now the French cannot hide from CCTV even if they have never worn a veil. So it was a shock to see UKIP going that way.

      People won’t vote unless there’s something to vote for that they can be convinced will win. If that can be done, the party that does it will sail through because those who don’t vote outnumber those who do.

      The question is, can it be done?

      • Paul
        May 23, 2011 at 12:47 am

        “So it was a shock to see UKIP going that way.”

        Farage realised what a hash Pearson had made of this; once he took over the reigns again he scaled that bit of nastiness back considerably by limiting it to government institutions, banks and shops (as they are privately owned) which, IMO, is much more sensible.

        I think Pearson was trying to turn UKIP into a sort of British PVV or something along those lines what with his relationship with Geert Wilders.

        • May 23, 2011 at 5:52 am

          “…he scaled that bit of nastiness back considerably by limiting it to government institutions, banks and shops (as they are privately owned) which, IMO, is much more sensible.”

          Surely banks and shops, being privately owned, should be given the choice to ban it if they wish to, not have it imposed upon them by government?

          • Budvar
            May 23, 2011 at 11:13 am

            Yes Julia they should, but without a ban being government sanctioned you’ll still have the racecard waving. Remember the hairdresser sued for racial discrimination for not hiring the hijab wearer, or the Dewsbury teaching assistant who insisted on wearing the full ninja?

          • Paul
            May 23, 2011 at 1:34 pm

            Surely banks and shops, being privately owned, should be given the choice to ban it if they wish to, not have it imposed upon them by government?

            Sorry, what I meant was is that banks and shops, as they are privately owned, would be told that it’s nothing less than OK to do this on their property if they wish – a sort of ‘approval’ from the government if you like without actively encouraging it specifically to target Muslims if you get what I mean.

            Any bank or shop that considered doing this in the current climate would just cause a lot of trouble for itself.

  4. May 22, 2011 at 11:59 pm

    There was a cricket match a few years back at the MCG, I was in Russia and saw it in the online Age I think, might have been the Ashes but they were going on about checking everyone’s bags and apparently there was a huge presence in Bay 13, where all the fun used to be. Someone started a Mexican wave and the police swooped on the one guy and dragged him away.

    From the time in the 80s when I was in Australia, I don’t recall that ever happening – maybe they’d take a d&d away but not for something innocuous like that. It was rowdy but good natured rowdiness. I thought, when I saw that report – what the hell is happening down there? Nanny state, strongarm tactics and so on? Sometimes I think the governments are trying to out-PC each other.

    • May 23, 2011 at 12:39 am

      I’ve heard about the new Stasi restrictions on cricket fans and it’s bizarre. Cricket hooligans? Milwall don’t even have a team.

      • May 23, 2011 at 5:53 am

        “Cricket hooligans? Milwall don’t even have a team.”

        Aren’t their often riots when Pakistan and India play cricket?

    • May 23, 2011 at 5:28 pm

      Last time I went to the footy at the Melbourne Cricket Ground there was a Mexican beer wave. For the uninitiated it’s exactly what it sounds like – as the wave comes round and you stand up you also sharply raise the hand with which you’re holding your beer, possibly even letting go of the (plastic) glass if there’s not much left in it. This is absolutely not allowed and a whiny man on the PA system said so, which resulted in the same thing happening again but with more cheering and slightly less beer. Tell a footy fan not to do something and if it’s unreasonable he’s likely to do just for the sake of it.

      • May 24, 2011 at 6:01 am

        😈

  5. May 23, 2011 at 12:02 am

    There are fewer and fewer people on the earth that I respect. Mostly, they are a disappointment; they disillusion and sadden me.

    One such man who never disappoints, never disillusions, is Leggy. We agreed to meet for a beer, over a year ago, and we never did. My fault, not his. In fact, I was in his town today, buying shit I didn’t want, for a home that has all it needs. Still, we helped the local economy, right?

    This is something that the Righteous, the anti-smokers in pertickyoular, will never get. For them, banning is all. For them, subjugation is everything. For them, curtailing one mans rights is good enough. They never see, nor do they want to see, how it ultimately impinges on their own rights. They are a sad and lonely mob. Although, “mob” is generous. They are remarkably few in number, and yet we, (the we that matter), permit them to speak for us. We allow the peck-sniffs, these sallow-faced, whey-faced, sons and daughters of pox-doctors clerks to speak for all, whether what they say makes sense or not. (And it usually doesn’t).

    How callow, how spineless, how gutless are we (and by “we” I mean those non-smokers) that allow them the latitude to expel, to disenfranchise 12-15 million people? For they are expelled. Doomed to sit in the wind, and the rain, and the snow, whilst their “cleaner living” brethren and sistren sit inside, warm and safe and comfortable-blessedly smoke-free-while the scum (those adding 11-15 BILLION a year to the Treasury coffers) are freezing to death outside.

    How many of those 8,000 dead pubs, many of them over 100 years old, and their 40,000-60,000 staff, would prefer to smell a little tobacco-smoke than to breathe the pungency of unemployment, the stench of desperation, or the redolence of hopelessness?

    Way to go, Righteous. How well you did! Wholesale slaughter of 3,000 years of history, of freedom, of liberty, for the sake of an….odour. Oh yes. That’s all it was. A harmless odour at that.

    What’s next, fuckwits? Garlic? Perfume? Curry? B.O?

    Science tells us that those are just as harmful as a little tobacco smoke, you wankers.

    Pat yourselves on the back. You fucked up again. Well done. It’s what you are best at.

    This kind of shit comes around every 86 years and lasts for thirteen. Nine years to go, motherfuckers. Then we will be back.

    And we will not forget the hate, the spite, the bile, or the childishness.

    Run as far as you want, but you cannot hide. We will come for you like you came for us.

    CR.

    • May 23, 2011 at 12:44 am

      Some of the harm they’ve done is now comiong to light.

      Seems they’ve protected the cheeeldren a little too much –

      http://express.co.uk/posts/view/248227/Alarm-at-today-s-weedy-children-who-can-t-climb

      They don’t have nine years left though. They started well before the official ban. Entire smokefree trains, buses, and more, long before the ban came in. In fact, they might only have weeks now.

      One day we’ll get that drink.

    • May 23, 2011 at 5:56 am

      “They are remarkably few in number, and yet we, (the we that matter), permit them to speak for us.”

      Not always – at a boot sale recently, in the open air in a field, a woman passing objected to a stallholder smoking ‘near her child’. She was quickly and instantly ridiculed by everyone around her, who loudly offered the stallholder a light or another fag.

      People do still maintain a sense of natural justice, however buried. 😀

  6. hipporider
    May 23, 2011 at 2:06 am

    I am now 48 and learned at school when I was 10 that smoking was bad for me . Whilst today the media accept every scientific report as gospel, failing to recognise that science is a debate and you should really wait for some more studies before leaning towards acceptance, the view on smoking seems to have been in only one direction for several decades. Consequently anyone other than a 50 year-old hermit should grasp the opinion of science about smoking: if you’ve taken it up in the intervening years you accept the likelihood of risk. No need to treat you like a retard and ban it for your own good. I asked my ten-year old daughter if she had received similar educational material. ‘Oh God, Dad, that was back in Reception’ i.e. 5 years old… I have also been asked to allow her to be weighed and measured so the NHS “can have a good understanding of how children are growing across the country”, helping them to “plan interventions for weight-related problems for children in your area”. ‘This is going to make me even more paranoid about my weight Dad’ she said. My paranoia alarm was already ringing so I telephoned the school and ‘opted out’ (yes – you have to opt-out, not in). You couldn’t make it up. Again.

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