The inevitable consequence.

Pandering to the feeble at every turn, forcing motorbike riders to wear helmets ‘for safety’ (whose safety? Mine? I can’t ride any bike so having someone pile into me at 40 mph is going to be worse if their head is encased in steel).

Forcing the fitting of seat belts to cars and then later, enforcing their use (for safety – whose? I don’t care whether the occupants of the car that hits me are belted in or not. In fact, they’ll feel safer so they’ll be going faster and being less careful).

Helmets were available to anyone who wanted them, seatbelts were available to anyone who wanted them. Forcing them on those who don’t want them was pandering to the feeble.

Skipping a few, we come to the smoking ban, which was the ultimate in pandering to the feeble (so far – next will be the terrible threat of second hand steam and then we’ll need a new word beyond feeble).

Helmets for motorbikers led to helmets for cyclists and then helmets for walking-pace donkey rides over sand. Front seat belts in cars led to rear seat belts then seat belts in buses and soon (if not already) in trains. In planes, okay, they make sense. If your plane hits an air pocket you don’t want your head poked through the overhead lockers.

The fear of tobacco smoke has, naturally, overspilled into the fear of all smoke. The feeble will soon be recognisable by the wearing of Underdog(TM) bubblewrap clothing. In hi-vis colours naturally.

<digression> – I routinely forget to wear the smoking jacket (hi-viz vest) when nipping out for a smoke at work. It’s not that I have any objection, it’s hardly an onerous requirement, I just forget. It has occured to me that there are so many hi-viz jackets around now that nobody takes any notice of them any more. They all notice the guy who isn’t wearing one. Therefore I am more noticeable and therefore safer by not wearing one – everyone is pointing at me and saying ‘Why are you not dressed like a traffic cone?’ </digression>

Actually, bubblewrap is highly prized when you are homeless in winter.. whoops, another digression looms.

The fear of smoke has now gone beyond absurd. A pub that had open fireplaces to inject a bit of real life into the soulless world we inhabit has been told they can’t have them any more. Why?

Because one, single, spineless, ultrafeeble candidate for the Underdog(TM) range of overpriced clothing for the stupid complained that the smoke went outside.

I think that’s a lie.

In the olden days I frequented a pub where one barmaid didn’t like the smell of tobacco smoke. She didn’t kick up a fuss. She just lit a candle on the bar.

It does work. Light a candle, the remnants of tobacco smoke are still combustible or something – sod it, I don’t know how it works but it does – the open flame makes the smell go away.

That will be why my smoking parents and smoking grandparents never filled the house with tobacco smell. We all had coal fires. Now that we all have central heating, there’s no open flame. The tobacco smoke lingers.

Not here. I have a candle burning when I’m writing. We writers are full of superstition and strange routines. And I like candles. This might be why I am often given the ‘all smokers are horrible’ rant by antis and why nonsmokers will say to me after months of knowing me ‘I didn’t know you smoked’. There is no residual smell on my clothes (hint, antismokers, get a washing machine and change them often) nor in my hair (even when it reaches Neanderthal appearance because barbers are like dentists with less pain).

I have to wonder if the Righteous have realised that an open fire effectively removes all smoking-smell from a room. In a pub, therefore, it cannot be permitted.

And soon in a home. Can’t have the inspectors doing any actual work, can we?

A tenuous connection – a smoky-drinker who lives in a council house was generously upgraded fom open fire to gas central heating recently. He can’t afford to run it. He could run his fire on offcuts of wood his brother brought home from a building site, but his open fire was walled up as part of the deal.

Part Green God Tyranny and, perhaps, also part Tobacco Control Tyranny?

It’s hard to work out who is the worst these days.

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14 thoughts on “The inevitable consequence.

  1. “A pub that had open fireplaces to inject a bit of real life into the soulless world we inhabit has been told they can’t have them any more. Why? Because one, single, spineless, ultrafeeble candidate for the Underdog(TM) range of overpriced clothing for the stupid complained that the smoke went outside.”

    It’s not just the fireplace smoke that goes outside though. It’s all those pubs and fast food joints that are killing people by cooking food! See what comes out of a local Burger King in my area:

    http://www.smokersclubinc.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=4415 (Click the little square with the flag for the ten second video — and no, this was not an odd, single-day occurrence: I saw the same thing when being driven by it several months later!)

    If what the Antismokers tell us about the uselessness of filtration of smoke is true, then ALL FIRED COOKING needs to be banned. Boiled hamburgers and filet mignons, over an electric range, are all that shall be allowed! Toast shall be a thing of the past. And you can have your eggs any way you want them as long as they’re boiled or raw.

    – MJM
    P.S. Do you REALLY have a rule about people wearing hi-viz jackets anytime they step outside the workplace???

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    • The total removal of fire from the hands of the cavemen seems to be one of the main goals. Who let the plebs have fire in the first place? What were they thinking?

      Yes – the smoking area is in the loading bay so we get provided with smoking jackets.

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    • A pill containing all your daily vitamins, and a cold porridge of the exact quantities of fats, carbohydrates and proteins. In fact, put the vitamins in the porridge and you have one-smoothie-a-day to keep the serfs alive… it’s coming.

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  2. XX If your plane hits an air pocket XX

    If a plane flys into an air pocket, I doubt you would have time to fasten your seatbelts, as they are only worn on take off and landing, unless severe weather on the flight path has been forecast.

    Air pockets do NOT need bad weather.

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  3. I agree that being hit by a crash helmet ain’t pleasant, especially if there’s a body attached. However it’s a darned sight less messy than a bare skull, simply because it keeps all the red liquid inside.

    Someone’ll point out they’re not made of metal because that’s too heavy and it tends to get too hot or cold.

    My own beef has been their mandating headlights on for motorbikes. That’s fine in winter, but several bikers have come a cropper in high summer because they passed over a manhole cover and the car driver thought they were flashing their headlight to let the car join the main road from a side junction!

    And day time running lights for cars? Supposed to make them more visible. At some point they’ll all have day time running lights, so I expect they’ll all have to have flashing lights on the roof. A variation of the speed warning devices they have in Singapore. I jest not.

    http://statutes.agc.gov.sg/aol/search/display/view.w3p;page=0;query=CompId%3Abcd86fc9-a2ee-494a-ae89-5d695bcc6225%20ValidTime%3A20131203000000%20TransactionTime%3A20131203000000;rec=0

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      • The best safety device for cars would be a replacement of the steering wheel airbag with an 8inch stiletto which will be despatched by an explosive charge when the car, treavelling forward at a speed in excess of 30 mph comes to asudden, i.e. collision, stop. This will put the responsibilty for avoiding crashes firmly where it belongs as well as stopping no end of spurious whiplash claims.

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  4. I routinely forget to wear the smoking jacket (hi-viz vest) when nipping out for a smoke at work. It’s not that I have any objection, it’s hardly an onerous requirement, I just forget.

    I am on tenterhooks until you tell whether this is a rule, an advisory, a law, or satire. Or a prediction.

    Where I live, I am required by law to be belted in whenever the wheels are turning if I am in my two-ton steel cage with air bags. If I’m riding my two wheeled completely open motorcycle, no helmet is required (nor, to be fair, are seat belts required).

    Forcing them on those who don’t want them was pandering to the feeble.

    In the USA we’ve decided to cater to the least able of resident, and then define down disability. It’s worked quite well; we have an entirely different nation compared to even two generations ago.

    New regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency make it difficult to have open fireplaces, and regulate flue emissions so as to make traditional fireplace inserts noncompliant. The EPA does not consider humans to be part of the environment, which makes stuff interesting.

    I don’t own a helmet, but have taken to wearing protective eyeglasses during more activities than once was the case. That is personal experience, not legalese.

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    • Ha-ha, New Yorkers are scared of steam! What happened to the streetwise hard-man image then? Next time a NY gang pulls knives, just pull out your Electrofag and blow steam at them. What a bunch of girlie-men that mayor has produced! And they keep voting for him, so they must be happy being laughed at.

      Go on, Arab nations, roar with laughter at the Americans who are frightened of steam. Maybe then the ordinary Americans will actually think before they vote next time.

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