Thursday 3 December 2015

Modern Day Follies

folly ˈfɒli/ noun: a costly ornamental building with no practical purpose
Behold the height of government idiocy. Via Mr Cole, this is what vaping areas are going to look like, probably just about everywhere.

Commons bosses have been blasted for wasting taxpayers’ money installing two useless “vaping areas” around parliament that nobody uses, The Sun can reveal. 
The zones were installed in the summer after MPs were banned from puffing on e-cigs indoors, but the ruling is widely flouted by MPs “vaping” in their offices and bars. 
Vaping Tory MP Stephen Metcalfe said: “The ban is so silly that MPs are increasingly ignoring it – which is not a great image for lawmakers.”
Now, Metcalfe is a decent sort, but he's missing the point somewhat. This laughable "solution" is entirely the result of moronic politicians and their adherence to extremists in the tobacco control industry. MPs are ignoring the rules because the rules are utterly ridiculous.

So how did it get to such a situation that Westminster is parodying itself and installing the modern day equivalent of a folly? Well, in 1972 ASH was founded by government officials and staffed by the Department of Health. Also in the 1970s, a raving lunatic decided that it would be a wheeze to pretend that the public are threatened by mythical secondhand smoke. An industry grew up around it and the fantasy that standing next to a smoker indoors would kill you was formed.

Of course, once this happened, even smoking outdoors (which cannot possibly harm anyone so even anti-smoking crazies have given up trying to 'prove' that) is regarded as a threat by HR professionals. Here is what ACAS has to say on the matter.
There may be a concern that preventing the use of E-cigarettes at work may hinder those who use them to stop smoking, particularly if they are required to smoke them in designated smoking areas together with cigarette smokers. Employers may want to consider organising a separate E-cigarette smoking area external to work premises.
And the CIPD says ...
 “[employees] could challenge any disciplinary action arising from using e-cigarettes outside of a designated smoking area. To avoid this risk, employers could assign a separate area for e-cigarette users, well away from the designated smoking area” 
So, the result of government idiocy is, funnily enough, an idiotic solution. As you can see above.

Of course, since there is no threat for anyone from vapers being indoors - as the government's own 'public health' advisory body has stated - they could just let e-cigs be openly used inside. But that would be far too cheap and sensible in a time of 'austerity', now wouldn't it?

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