Saturday 4 February 2012

Tobacco Control More Extreme Than Fundamental Islam

I've said before that you're going to hear some incredibly desperate justification for plain packaging in the coming months. In this 54 second campaign video, for example, is an absolute pearler from Australian Head woe-warbler, Simon Chapman.

Apparently, it's perfectly reasonable to stop an industry from using their historical trademarks ... because Islamic countries prohibit alcohol.

There's only one problem with his reasoning though, and it's a big one.

You see, if you've visited such a country - as I have - you'll have noticed that they certainly do sell drinks industry products, just without alcohol in them. Non alcoholic beers (NAB) are thriving in Saudi Arabia and other Islamic countries - as well as wines specially developed for the market conditions - many of which are made by recognisable western brands.

As such, there is no bar to these companies, there is an available market and their trademarks are perfectly welcome. Why, then, would they even dream of taking Islamic governments to court?

But since Chapman brought it up, it does illustrate something rather interesting. Since even administrations which abhor alcohol are accepting of the trademarks and branding used by manufacturers of a substance they despise - both culturally and theologically - it makes them more tolerant than tobacco controllers who seem unable to do the same.

Thanks for illustrating your extremism so eloquently, Simon.

If you haven't already, please do go and register your objection to extremists.


Angry Exile said...

There's another slight flaw in Chappie's logic, which is that Australia's not a fucking Islamic country. Idiot - fuck him sideways with a nicotine minaret.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yes, it's rather odd that he is happy comparing with a heavily dictatorial country. It does invite criticism somewhat, eh? :)

prog said...

Wouldn't this analogy only be relevant if nicotine was prohibited? 

Clarissa said...

Depending on where you are in the Muslim world you can buy alcohol. Some of them even make the stuff.

Junican said...

Chapman's PhD was in sociology. His speciality is linguistics. You have to watch every word he says - he is an expert in twisting words.

In this particular quote he is guilty of 'conflation' - lumping things together as if they are the same sort of thing. He's been twisting and conflating for thirty years, but we are only just beginning to observe it. In general, it is called 'framing the debate'. Expect ASH ET AL to be screetching 'children, children, children', while planning to expose them to the most blatantly obscene picture and saying that that is what happens to smokers.   

Jay said...

One could argue that Australia is worse than any mad islamic-ruled country. And don't get me wrong... went to Sydney a half-decade ago and absolutely loved it, beautiful country, lovely people, but...  well, Australia is governed by a pack of fuckwits and look at the dumb ass laws the current fuckwits have passed in the past few years. Who votes these people in and why?  Shameful.  I'm definitely not going back to Australia until Australians revolt and kick those fuckers out of office, out of the country, and repeal those laws.  I'd rather live and take my chances in Iran, truth be told.  Seriously.

Woodsy42 said...

But isn't alcohol free wine rather like tobacco free ciggies?

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Glad you asked that, as people like Chapman don't like them either. Remember e-cigs? 

Just another way that Chapman's kind are extremists when put up against the comparatively moderate Saudi Arabian government.

Carol Scott42 said...

Until the revolution in 1979 Iran had a thriving wine and vodka industry, quite good it was too, it was not a dry country, not sure it ever was until 1979. They also produced whisky and brandy but least said about that the better!

Angry Exile said...

Much like Britain really, and also like it in that the electoral system is biased towards keeping one or other lot of fuckwits in. But as bad as Iran? I don't think it's even as bad as Britain or I wouldn't still be here. It's a year or two ahead on some levels of epic stupidity (e.g. plain fag packets) but behind on others (e.g. you could still smoke in pubs in some places here when it was banned all the UK), quite a long way behind in others (e.g. there's no NHS as such, more private medicine and you either pay for ambulances or you get ambo insurance), and in some areas it's miles ahead (e.g. prostitution laws are left up to the states so in much of the country hookers can find work in safe, regulated brothels and pay tax on what they make). There's no EU equivalent unless you consider yourself a Victorian/Taswegian/Queenslander etc and look at Canberra the same way as Brussels, and to my knowledge there's also nothing at all like Blair's various mini-Enabling Acts, which let the PM and government do pretty much anything and suspend any law they damn well please and which the Cobbleition have been suspiciously quiet about since they took over.

I usually tell people that overall Oz feels about 5 years behind the UK for overbearing nannying and creeping authoritarianism, but I think I might be being unfair. I've been here longer than that and to be honest it doesn't feel as bad as the UK did when I left. If Brits won't revolt because it's not bad enough yet then sure as hell Aussies won't. The thing that should really put Brits off is that it's become fucking expensive here due to the falling £, the booming A$ and the fact we still haven't had a significant correction in the housing market here. Oh, and that there's a million and one horrible, scuttling, crawling and slithering things packed with venom that want everyone dead. But enough about the Green party... ;-)

Groompy said...

Let me explain the differences between Australia and Saudi Arabia to all of you. One is a country governed by extremists hell bent on imposing their rule on a people who have been manipulated to accept this rule without question, the other country is Saudi Arabia.

Sam Duncan said...

I recall the commentators at last year's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix laughing about the fact that underneath the huge Johnnie Walker logo on the side of the Force India cars, where it usually says, in tiny letters, “Scotch Whisky”, were the words, “Video Tapes”.

That it was on the FI cars is interesting, too: their owner, VJ Mallya, also owns India's Kingfisher brewery. But he made his real money out of a budget airline, also called Kingfisher to promote the brand in regions where alcohol advertising is banned.

Why the tobacco companies haven't cottoned on to this, I do not know. Imperial could have bought into a car firm, and we could be driving around in Ford Embassies and Regals, with sporty John Player Special editions (Imperial actually owns a brand called “Escort”). The bansturbators would have a fit, but what could they do?

non sum dignus said...

The Anti Smoking fanatics should be treated like Fundamentalis Extremists.
No chattering ,no appeasement,no discussion,no whimpering.
Name them ,shame them ,give them a decent supper and then tomorrow,
make tham dine in hell.
The fannying about with these freaks has run it's course.
In the strugggle for liberty and freedom the human heart has no place for
emotion or pleasantness,no room for dithering nor space for peaceniks.
Let those who cry freedom join together in one union,as for those who
refuse to join,our suspicions of their real postion will be justified.
Put simply , time to stand up, or, shut up.

Yours in great anticipation. 
Knee deep in snow outside a near empty Tavern  

nisakiman said...

Yes, I remember when I was in Tehran in the late 60s it had a thriving downtown area with lots of clubs and bars. Their local Vodka was not bad, too. In the old part of town there were lots of Vodka bars, some of which appeared to have their distilling facility. I got totally wrecked on Vodka a number of times while I was there.

Funny how times change.

And now in the West we have the Ayatollahs of health trying to replicate the Iranian experience.

Thomas said...

It sounds like they are comparing plain packets, retail display bans and smoking bans to that of Sharia Law.

nicholas.ashley1 said...

I signed the petition. I don't smoke but I am totally fed up with so called 'health' and other control freak Nazis trying to tell adults what to do and what not to do and the taking any choice in the matter away with nasty legislation. Under my regime, tobacco would be advertised on TV as it is a legal product.

Carol Scott42 said...

Yes, I will never forget the first time we went out for a meal and asked for two vodkas, we got a bottle and two glasses! had the cheek to have two. I loved it there but we were forced out by the revolution. I remember an English pub and an Irish one too.