Comment Central yesterday highlighted a piece by the British Psychological Society on tobacco health warnings.
Researchers have found that death-related health warnings on cigarette packs are likely to encourage some people to smoke.
While it's encouraging that such a matter is actually tackled on such a high profile blog, to describe this conclusion as 'astonishing', as Hattie Garlick has, shows a lack of understanding as to the laughable incompetence of tobacco control nutters.
As I've mentioned many times before, anti-smokers are so deeply mired in their own self-righteousness that they serially fail to notice that the more wild their hysterical ranting, the less anyone is motivated to give up. They have long since passed into a negative state of effectiveness on the pareto principle, yet still push the same failed methods.
They're like the lab mouse who doesn't learn to stay away from the electrified cheese.
Now, whisper this as we don't want them cottoning on and ruining the fun, but the reason all their ideas - which I'm sure they thought of as inspired when imagining them - fail so miserably, is that they quite simply cannot understand how people can contemplate a differing outlook on life.
Smokers are - and this really should be quite obvious - risk-takers by nature, otherwise, they wouldn't have smoked in the first place, no?
Those who dedicate their lives to eradicating smoking, however, are the very opposite. They talk incessantly of death as if it is something of which we should be morbidly terrified with every waking minute. Like their cousins in the anti-alcohol and anti-food lobby, they see no value in potentially unhealthy substances and view life merely as a competition in living the longest.
As they are averse to any kind of risk, and only ever converse with others who share their views plus the odd thick-as-shit MP, it's understandable that they are never going to spot their mistakes.
Those who have a less hysterical take on society see the problem from a different perspective, though, as I pointed out on the F2C blog in June.
Top US advertiser, Pentagram, was tasked with coming up with an ad idea for Marlboro following stringent rules on cigarette labelling enforced by the FDA. Their suggestion as to how to ensure Marlboro's sales didn't suffer, and maybe even gain a boost, was not dissimilar to the method which deluded anti-smokers think is going to make smokers quit.
Stout suggests that to comply with the crackdown, tobacco companies should embrace the restrictions and make cigarettes look truly dangerous.
“Over the years there has been an onslaught of public awareness messaging about the evils of smoking,” says Stout. “Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the last 50 years you are very aware that smoking is not only bad for you, it could very likely kill you. All smokers know this for sure but it doesn’t deter them.
“Our marketing advice to cigarette companies in the new heavily regulated era is to fully accept the new aggressive anti-smoking restrictions and wallow in the government’s apocalyptic health warnings. Don’t make excuses or dance around the stepped-up marketing regulations, just transform the whole cigarette pack into a three dimensional warning label.”
Something like this, they ventured.
Look great, don't they? Probably why ASH are currently tilting at entirely blank packets, as near to an admission of abject failure as you're going to get from them after all their orgasmic predictions as to how effective scary pictures were going to be. Pffft.
Still, it won't deter them. Their capacity to stun us with ignorance is legendary ... one might even say 'astounding'. And if you think that's a one-off, you merely need to cast a glance at some of the other policies which they no doubt consider to be compelling.
Raising taxes is a perennial favourite.
Study: High tobacco taxes not a deterrent
HEC Montreal Associate Professor Jean-Francois Ouellet used data collected by Statistics Canada on smoking trends and found tax rates had minimal effect on usage, the release said.
CCSA Vice President Michel Gadbois said that was evidence the government was costing itself revenue while having no impact on smoking rates.
Smoking prevalence not affected, smuggling and contraband increased. It's the same old story, but still anti-smokers refuse to believe the evidence which consistently pokes them in the eye.
Nope, not for them the calm consideration of reality, the world of tobacco control follows nothing but hyperbole and a masochistic adherence to quixotic gestures, as illustrated again with the recent forcing through, complete with world class mendacity, of the Health Act which banned tobacco displays.
No evidence tobacco ad ban works
A call to ban tobacco displays from shops has not got the support of the National Government at this stage, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key says.
Mr Key said evidence suggested such moves were not an effective way to tackle smoking as a health issue and he wouldn't support it.
"The reason is there is no international evidence that it actually works, and it's hugely expensive to do it," he told TV3's Sunrise show on Tuesday.
So, based on bitter experience, prepare for an increase in smoking amongst UK teens once fag packs are hidden behind screens which corner shops will struggle to afford. That's if they continue being corner shops at all (how many pubs closing per week now? I lost count).
It's far from astonishing that anti-smoking tactics are being shown up as suspect. Quite the opposite, tobacco control's track record is such that there would be more surprise if they advocated something which actually resulted in constructive success.
ASH and their friends would be well advised to understand that there is more than one way to view life, and that their fears are entirely different to those of their ideological opposites.
They say there are no smokers, merely addicts. It would not be too inaccurate to counter that there are no anti-smokers, merely bigots who are addicted to failure.