Saturday, December 29, 2012

New Years Eve err Eve Or Something

Two sides of the same coin, or Why they banned smoking in bars

 What was wrong with the law proving 50 by 50%? I don't understand. The fact that the law was not observed is a different story. And where is the guarantee that this law will be observed?" Paliychuk wondered. He also points out the first to suffer from this law will be business, not smokers. "Already now restaurant owners complain about outflow of clients. In Poland, for example, two thousand enterprises went bankrupt after the first half a year of operation of such ban. Pretending to fight for waiter's rights, these activists will deprive these very waiters of their jobs," Paliychuk believes. In his opinion, restaurant industry will suffer losses in 2013, while tobacco companies will not even notice the changes. 

Curbs on Smokers Continue to Grow

North Dakota this month banned smoking in most public places. Meanwhile, further curbs are under discussion from Bangor, Maine, to San Francisco, as authorities vow to protect the public from secondhand smoke.
"It's no longer a question of who's going to be next" to ban smoking in public areas, said Cynthia Hallett, executive director of Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights, a nonprofit group. "It's who's going to be last."

Shareholders File Anti-Smoking Resolutions With Movie Companies

An anti-smoking crusade is being taken to movie companies by shareholders who are filing resolutions asking that movies designed for young people eliminate smoking or have R ratings.
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), one of the leaders of the effort, notes a recent U.S. Surgeon General report that says smoking depicted in movies causes more young people to take up smoking.
Shareholders of several major movie companies have filed resolutions asking that the companies give movies depicting smoking an R rating or eliminate smoking from movies anticipated to get a G, PG, or PG-13 rating.
For example, it would make smoking in a car where a child is present a secondary offense, meaning police could not pull over drivers just for that. A driver could be ticketed only after being cited for a primary offense. Also, for the first year after enactment, police would be allowed only to issue warnings, not tickets, to violators. And the $45 penalty would be waived if the violator attended a smoking-cessation class.
Even with all its compromises, the bill is important, Arent says, "because having it illegal makes all the difference in the world to people’s action."
Arent says she has lined up medical experts who can testify that smoking in cars with children "is the most dangerous place to smoke with the most dangerous person to have the smoke around."
Separating smokers from non-smokers, cleaning the air and ventilating buildings cannot eliminate exposure of nonsmokers to second-hand smoke. Each year, second-hand smoke is responsible for an estimated 50,000 deaths in the United States.
"The best way to protect the millions of U.S. multi-unit housing residents from exposure to second-hand smoke is by prohibiting smoking in all units and shared areas of their buildings," said Tim McAfee, MD, MPH, director of the CDC's Office on Smoking and Health. "Not only are smoke-free policies permitted for both public and privately owned multi-unit housing, but they are also favored by most residents and can result in cost savings for multi-unit housing operators."

When the governmental nannies tell us that a Big Gulp is just too much Pepsi, that cigarettes must be banned or that fast food is not heart friendly, they tell us they are doing it for our own good. We will be happier if we just give in to their hectoring. Taken to its logical extreme, however, the Nanny State will not tolerate your disobedience. During Prohibition, the Nanny State was a killer.
Lest you think it is inherently suspicious a young man would have chemicals or electronic parts, note that his school is, according to a Press of Atlantic City account, "a magnet school with programs focusing on engineering and environmental sciences and specializing in hands-on learning." And his momtold that her son had a "passion for collecting old stuff, taking it apart and rebuilding things."

Hmm,still thinking that next year isn't going to be any better.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas *sigh*

Health And Safety Gone Mad

Bans on yo-yos in playgrounds, knives in kitchens and kettles in offices have all been wrongly blamed on workplace safety laws this year, a new report has revealed.
A health and safety "myth-buster" panel set up to expose mis-uses of the law - or just silly decisions - has received scores of complaints from members of the public in 2012.
The panel has now responded to its 100th case, with 38 put down to jobsworths making an excuse for an unpopular decision or simply poor customer service.
Tax expert Rauhöft suggested that for the system to work, drivers should file what part of a private-company charge was not used on food. But this would mean drivers keeping a "schnitzel book" alongside their toilet log. 
Users seek each other out online and arrange discreet meetings to discuss distribution channels. Vendors won’t speak to reporters on the record because they are afraid the government will shut them down. Until recently, it was not unusual for transactions to take place in back alleys; a plastic bag handed over in exchange for a fistful of cash.
The product is not cocaine or marijuana. It is nicotine delivered via electronic cigarettes, which cannot be legally imported or sold in this country, but are widely available south of the border. 

According to the author, Pamela McColl:
“I edited this poem as studies out of the United States in the 1990s showed that the depiction of cartoon characters smoking influences young children ages 3-7 towards tobacco products,” she said.
Really? I would love to know how many children have started to smoke as a consequence of reading (or being read) a poem about Santa written in 1823.
Filmmaker Frederick Maheux claims Canada's indie horror industry is already feeling the impact of the court case. Maheux made a documentary on Couture in 2009 called ART/CRIME. Since the trial began, the doc has been pulled from distribution on the basis it features clips from Couture's allegedly obscene videos. Maheux called the act "catastrophic" for his own filmmaking livelihood. He also claims, if Couture is found guilty, it could have a similar effect on the country's horror industry at large.
Given the Government's inability to create sensible laws regarding alcohol advertising and labelling, is it not time to shame individuals in the alcohol industry to make real moves to ensure all alcohol and all advertisements contain clear warnings about drinking during pregnancy and the risks of cancer?
Cartoon characters like the Paddle Pop Lion and Freddo Frog are being used increasingly across media platforms to lure children to unhealthy foods and should be banned, a health organisation has said.
While falling short of calling for ''plain packaging'' on sugary and fatty foods, the Obesity Policy Coalition said the federal government should ban marketers from using cartoon characters and giveaway toys to promote junk and unhealthy foods.

Good grief.
I hope this upcoming year is better than last year but it sure doesn't look like it will be.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Truth And Lies Tid Bits

City moves to restore local rights on tobacco

TAHLEQUAH — Tahlequah city councilors voted unanimously Monday to adopt a resolution restoring local rights when governing tobacco-related laws.

City Attorney Park Medearis said the resolution is non-binding. He and Mayor Jason Nichols said the document has no enforcement powers, but will let the Oklahoma Legislature know the city council supports local rights on tobacco issues.

Val Dobbins, a local advocate, said local rights were lost by cities on this issue in the 1980s. The resolution is standardized, and cities across Oklahoma are being asked to adopt the document.

Cigarette danger ‘exaggerated'

The report, based on surveys conducted annually from 2003 to 2011, shows one in eight of all Victorians in 2011 believed the ill-health effects related to smoking had been overstated.
However, one in four current smokers said they believed the effects were exaggerated.

"The computer simulation the study used does not relate to any real-life scenario because in real life, youth who are interested in smoking will go into a store with the intent to purchase cigarettes," Boston University Department of Community Health Science professor Dr. Michael Siegel told Tobacco E-News. "I don't think there are too many situations where a teen is hanging out in a store sees a display, and suddenly decides to try cigarettes."