Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Smoking shelters planned for James Paget Hospital


Mr Lower said the hospital was "not conceding defeat, it's recognising the reality of the situation. We have got signs, we have staff come out to ask smokers not to smoke or move off our premises - it doesn't work".
"We have thousands of visitors to the hospital, often in times of stress, and many of them have a need to smoke - they are addicted to nicotine."
But Patrick Thompson, from the patient group Norfolk Link, said rebuilding smoking shelters on hospital grounds sent out the wrong message.
"We'd like the site to be a non-smoking site, but 'the site' is only covered by the building and not the outside areas.

I think it's pretty telling that these shelters that were removed in 2005 are going to be rebuilt.
A shelter not fit for pigs is progress 
 I think if they are truly rebuilt then it sends a message that smoking can't be stopped,not by force or threats or by busybodies with nothing better to do than chastise others.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Tid Bits

Treasury says smokers save the Government money

In its report, the Treasury says smokers often die earlier than non-smokers and save the state in superannuation costs.
Treasury says smokers pay $1.3 billion a year in excise which may already exceed the direct health costs they impose.
The report then goes on to consider broader economic questions. It says smokers' shorter life expectancy reduces superannuation and aged care costs, meaning they are already "paying their way in narrowly fiscal terms"

The Treasury’s most recent guidelines  (2009) for contracts with non-governmental organisations also make it clear: “Government agencies should also be careful to ensure that contracts do not breach public service standards of political neutrality”.
However, the Health Ministry is still funding the “advocacy” and “awareness raising” that these organisations engage in. The Ministry still funds ASH and other organisations like the Public Health Association – it is just more careful about what it puts in the contracts.
The current ASH contract  allows it to “liaise with government and private health agencies, the media and any other appropriate organisations to raise public awareness of tobacco related issues and developments”. It says it will “prepare and distribute media briefings, commentary and releases on key tobacco issues. This will include maintaining relationships with key media.”
A quick look at the ASH website  makes it clear it is a lobby group, but a lobby group that gets 89% of its funding from the taxpayer

For governments, tobacco-tax policy remains a hornet’s nest, and there are no easy answers. On one hand, health groups favour still-higher taxes and stronger enforcement. On the other hand, legal producers and distributors favour reduced taxes with stronger enforcement.
This raises the following question: could lower tobacco taxes drive out the illegal product by inducing smokers to switch from illegal to legal cigarettes, and at the same time increase tax revenues?
Assuming individual smokers’ basic preference for legal products, tobacco-tax reductions would likely only create a modest drop in consumption of the illegal product,lead to a decline in tax revenues and result in a small increase in total consumption. The market share of the illegal product would fall more substantially were the price of the illegal product to rise as a result of stronger legal or enforcement pressures on suppliers.

French smokers unite against curbs

PARIS — French smokers have formed a lobby to "defend their rights" against what they perceive as unfair curbs imposed by the state, the group's leaders said Sunday.
The Union for the Rights of Adult Smokers (UDFA) says it represents a potential 12.5 million voters and intends to fight against the spread of no-smoking zones or rising cigarette prices.
"We want to defend our freedom," chairwoman Nathalie Masseron told AFP.
"We are being barred from cafe terraces, some want to ban us from parks with children, some hotels are non-smoking, soon a smoker won't be able to rent a flat and there's even talk of banning smoking while you drive," she said.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Wanting to Smoke at Home, and Facing Hurdles in Apartment Hunt


 Mr. Lolli said. Some of the renters do smoke, he suspects, but just keep their habit to themselves, a practice that is becoming more common these days.
And why might that be?
“It welcomes you like a cloud of disgustingness,” Leonard Steinberg, a managing director at Prudential Douglas Elliman, said of taking a stroll past a smoker. “Hate, hate, hate.”
With that kind of animus in the air, it is not surprising that some smokers demanded anonymity in exchange for their apartment-hunting stories.
“You get judged for being a smoker, so I like to keep it hidden,” said a 28-year-old woman, who declined to reveal herself as a smoker in the newspaper, or to her landlord. “I would like to get my security deposit back.”

Gee thanks Nanny Bloomberg.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Russian MPs to debate harshest-ever anti-smoking bill


The bill stipulates a dramatic price rise on cigarettes, up to the European level – at least 1.28 euro per pack. It also bans cigarette sales at public catering venues, street stands and stalls. Cigarettes will be sold only at shops of at least 50 square meters in area. 
In other measures, it will be prohibited to display cigarette packs at showcases – potential buyers will have to make their choice from a price list only. The aim is to prevent the uptake of smoking among young people under 18.
Cigarettes and smoking in children's movies will be subject to censorship. Tobacco companies will not be able sponsor educational and sports organizations, healthcare and cultural institutions. 

Because doing things like this always works so well.
These governments can't wait to try and one up each other,each trying to be harsher than the last.
Fortunately no one has tried to imitate Bhutan yet.
It has always bugged me that some members of society picked smokers to be their scapegoats .
And now we're on track to see soda go the way of cigarettes .

Someday I hope I wake up to find this has been nothing but a bad dream...................

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Hard to argue in favor of smoking in clubs


It's not easy for a politician to defend smoking but Eagle River Assemblyman Bill Starr will be doing just that next week.
Starr has proposed a repeal of the smoking ban for private clubs. The Assembly will take comment Tuesday night. The change would affect 20 or so clubs -- mostly veterans and fraternal organizations -- but it is really aimed at just one: the Eagles Aerie 4174 in Peters Creek.

Not much I can say,but any politician who does this is OK in my book.
Wish they'd wise up and repeal all the bans on bars,clubs and pubs everywhere.
Sad no one sees the disparities in tax revenue and job rates and losses as being connected.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Leave a few spots where smokers can puff away


Our media outlets, including this paper, should also do a little research before airing or printing the opinions of the zealots. The media has a duty to present a balanced view of the facts, not just opinions.
In a well informed, civil society, people tolerate diverse race, religion, sexual orientation, political belief and various life styles.
When the majority takes away a freedom enjoyed by a minority - not for any valid reason, but just because they can - we are on the slippery slope.

Not much I can say about that.
It's sad but most of the decent stuff I read is just from letters to the editor or comments.

Monday, May 14, 2012

A timely wake-up call (Bhutan)


The much more relaxed 2012 amended version of the law is still also aimed at busting bootleggers, but it is clear that this is not necessarily working, primarily because tobacco users don’t want to go through the hassle of being at the border town to pay the 100 percent duty.  It can be inferred that similar problems must be occurring with regards to a host of items that are imported on a regular basis, and on which no bans exist.
But it is obvious that decision makers would rather forego the taxes that the government can collect, than allow legal sale within the country, and tarnish its image as a Buddhist country.

I'm glad the new bill is somewhat more relaxed but 100 percent duty on tobacco is insane.

Almost no one is going to pay that.

A bad law is still a bad law even if no one goes to jail for breaking it.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Top Addictions Doctor: Don't Treat Smokers Like Animals

Top Addictions Doctor: Don't Treat Smokers Like Animals

Yevgeny Bryun, the chief narcologist at the Heath and Social Development Ministry, told reporters that smokers "pay for their sin" through tobacco taxes, so the government has an obligation to provide "civilized, humane conditions" where smokers can "fulfill their painful needs."
Designated smoking areas should be reasonably comfortable with good ventilation, but many do not meet this standard, he said.
"Airports are now setting aside places to smoke, [but] these places are impossible to enter," he said, Interfax reported. "This is an outrage. This is treating man like an animal, because he has paid for his sin."
Bryun urged the state to show compassion toward smokers.
"You cannot change the habit of a person who has smoked from childhood," he said. "He will never give up tobacco. But he is a living, breathing human being, and he needs to be provided with a place where he can smoke freely."

I love reading about real doctors who still treat people with compassion.

It's such a rarity I just had to put it up here...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

SMOKING: Ban could start firestorm

SMOKING: Ban could start firestorm

What a fantastic idea to ban smoking on the beaches. This great thought is simply incomplete as written. Yes, banning is the answer; it will interface with many other great plans.
Also needed is banning noise, screaming and crying kids and adults, rock concerts, loud stereos in the automobiles going to or coming from the beaches, loud tail pipes, throwing Frisbees, balls, or anything else that could injure a bystander or any noisemaking device which this ban would include musical instruments, nonmusical instruments used to make a noise, even the mouth as it is the worst of offenders at making noise.

The sweet written words of someone using common sense.
How I've missed them.