If you live in Wales, you'll have seen this before. In fact, you'll probably be pig sick of it by now.
Yes, as pointed out by my Twitter chum ArfurD, Fresh Start Wales - a government-funded anti-smoking org - has been sponsoring the ITV weather reports over the border.
I've always been interested in how much these things cost so, seeing as it is covered by the Freedom of Information Act, I asked.
Fresh Start Wales is paying ITV £18,334 per month to include the clip in weather bulletins. Fresh Start Wales is paying ITV £110,002 in 2012/13 and £73,336 in 2013/14.This, remember, does not include our taxes they have spent on producing the video in the first place, nor on billboards and other advertising media supporting the same policy. I don't know how long the ads have been running so far, but this means Welsh viewers will eventually have to have endured ten months of it, day in day out, at all times of the night and day.
What is interesting about this is that it is subtle government lobbying government posing as a mini public information film.
The Welsh government has made no secret of the fact that they are soon to be tabling legislation to ban smoking in cars with children, so why not soften the public up first by shovelling £180k to one of their satellite bodies, eh? Ten months of a flawed message being subliminally dripped into the minds of relaxed TV watchers, and opposition - they expect - will just melt away.
If it doesn't, of course, the iron fist of the state will be brought to bear. Whereas in decades past they would broadcast films to advise the public, they now spend £180k in Wales alone to pass a message on, but with an open threat of coercion behind it if you don't comply.
And once they've slimed that law past a bovine public, they can go for what they have really desired all along, a comprehensive ban in all cars with children present or without.
To borrow a phrase ... whatever the weather outside, the state will always use your money to lie, cheat, bully, interfere and steal.