Monday 6 May 2013

Desperate Plain Packs Agitprop In The Guardian

I haven't fisked an article for a while, but this desperate guff from Tanya Gold in the Guardian is just so inept that it begs for it.

She seems to have no clue about the year long public consultation on plain packaging, or even the shabby evidence that prompted it. Here's a perfect example.
(Established smokers rarely change brands.)
Really, love? Because, you see, the campaign for plain packaging disagrees with you. They even cite it as a case study in their literature in favour.
"Our share grew by over 0.4% during this period – that might not sound a lot – but it was worth over £60 million in additional turnover and a significant profit improvement.”
£60 million is one hell of a lot of smokers changing to just a single brand, and there are around 200 of them in all. This is precisely why the tobacco industry would like to keep branding which distinguishes them from their competitors. It also neatly skewers the simpletons who are so lacking in the scantest knowledge of how business works that they believe industry objection can only mean that the policy will be brilliant. Like Simon Chapman, for example.

Anyway, back to sixth form throwback Tanya.
Or does the government feel pressure from Ukip, some of whose members seem to think that smoking, along with misogyny, homophobia and racism, is patriotic?
Yep, that's right. It's there in most of their material, "bash up a Paki", it says, "stab a gay", and if you get time while it's still light why not sexually abuse a woman, eh?

It beggars belief that the Graun allows idiots like this to make such tendentious sweeping statements, but then these are desperate times for those whose only concern is telling all us plebs how to live our lives.
Of course Ukip backs smoking. It thrives on the rhetoric of the pub
Because, it would seem, anyone who uses a pub and talks politics is obviously insane and should be ignored. Only those with a town house in Islington and a healthy addiction to ground coffee and qinoa seeds should be allowed to comment in this democracy of ours. They're really not learning, are they?
The freedom to smoke is a freedom of sorts – and Nigel Farage smokes. This is like David Cameron legislating for morning coats
No, it's nothing like that .. even remotely. That would be a law to force someone to do something. Government is legislating increasingly to force the public to not do something. It's a subtle difference too complicated for Tanya to comprehend, obviously. Or perhaps she is just playing deliberately dumb. I don't know which flatters her less, to be frank.
Who else smokes these days? Children mostly, and poorer children more than anyone, and the numbers are rising.
You're shitting me, surely! You mean that after advertising bans, bans on vending machines, graphic warnings on packs and hiding cigarettes behind screens, that youngsters are smoking more than ever? Jeez, put those tobacco control incompetents in jail, then! Not just because they are incompetent and dangerous, but also because they have been wildly extolling such policies as being overwhelmingly successful.

They are quite obviously fraudulent liars and any of their subsequent policies should be roundly ignored ... err, like plain packaging, perhaps?
When representatives of Imperial Tobacco, British American Tobacco (BAT), Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International met the government this year. Imperial Tobacco threatened to pull its packaging manufacture from the UK.
No mention whatsoever that the DoH was compelled to invite these companies to make their views known as part of legislation on impact assessments designed specifically to stop governments from abusing democratic process. And there I was believing that the Guardian was in favour of civil liberties and against fascism, eh?
They insisted plain packaging would assist counterfeiters and smugglers. If this fascinates you, I suggest you watch British American Tobacco's amusing and ostensibly racist promotional video Who's In Control?, in which cartoon eastern European gangsters drool over the financial possibilities of regulation
Ah, racist. The ultimate refuge of a lefty scoundrel bereft of coherent arguments. Course it is. It features people from other countries in a bad light because they are criminals, so is obviously racist. The BBC were also racist when their Panorama programme highlighted criminal Chinese gangs driving illicit fags in Scotland. I remember Tanya's ground-breaking exclusive on the Beeb and its fucking racist right-wing bastards, I'm sure I do.
Are these theoretical gangsters Bulgarian, or Romanian, is the obvious question.
Well, err, no. But it helps Tanya's contorted anti-UKIP agenda to suggest it, doesn't it?
We could muse further on these apocalyptic fantasies
{cough} Is she seriously supporting plain packs and accusing others of that?
But the independent studies undertaken all agree – young people and women don't like plain packets, and tobacco knows it.
{cough} Independent?

Plus, whether they say weak pliable women (shame on you, Tanya) or youths like it or not (a bit of a no-brainer that they wouldn't), tobacco control's 'evidence' says nothing about whether they will subsequently quit. In fact, their own studies admit that kids are blithely unaware of the packaging and have no interest even if they were. Hey, this isn't big evil tobacco saying this, it's those most enthusiastic about plain packs!
[T]he British government, theoretically dedicated to the health of its citizens, has a duty not to sink to lobbyists
Which is exactly what they might have done by rejecting emotional, evidence-free shroud-waving rubbish by people paid to do nothing else but lobby government and campaign for legislation which precious few others actually want.
As ever with this government, hollow rhetoric will do.
As ever with the Guardian, hollow baseless ideological, spectacularly ill-researched rhetoric will do. How on Earth this collection of intellectual savants lose £44m per year is anyone's guess.

Good grief.


Jay said...

Well, if the health zealots are right about the "obesity epidemic," particularly that being obese will cause premature death then I'm thinking that Tanya Gold has about 6 hours left to live. Mayhaps Ms Gold should lay off the chocolate biscuits for a couple of minutes:

SadButMadLad said...

Don't forget that the darling of the left, the EU, regularly gets lambasted for putting out "propaganda" that is pulled quickly for being racist.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Good lord!

It could be those alcohol calories, though. You see, she is dead against minimum alcohol pricing and admits in this article that smokers and drinkers cost the country less.

She says the obese do too, but they don't pay anywhere the level of sin taxes as the aforementioned.

We may be defending her from the health steamroller soon, and I can't wait to point out her infantile lack of foresight when it happens. ;)

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Thanks Rursus, it adds further fuel to her hypocritical tactical pyre (see my reply to Jay below). I bet she's absolutely shit at chess.

Mr A said...

Now THAT is a fisking!

Thanks for that - I rarely visit the Guardian nowadays - it just angers me so very, very much. It's not just the patronising attitude. Its the patronising attitude coming from people who are desperately, desperately stupid and ill informed.

Junican said...

I am not very clever at extracting pics from here and there, but you are Dick P.

Ms Gold is anti-tobacco, but not anti-flab.

Ms Nathanson is also anti-tobacco and anti-alcohol but not anti-flab.

Ms Kate Moss is NOT anti-smoking and is NOT anti-alcohol and IS anti-flab.

Which is telling the truth? Whom do you believe? Do you believe the delectable Ms Moss, or do you believe the gross others?


This is not as silly as it may seem.

If it were not for the gross over-estimate of tobacco smoking harm, OBESITY might well have been the recognised factor in heart DISEASE, lung DISEASE, and every other DISEASE. In fact, such DISEASES (being fat and fat and fat again) might not be DISEASES - they might be CHEMICAL PROCESSES.

The Health Zealots try to bamboozle us with foreign words, too numerous to mention. But we can comfort ourselves with the following reasonable knowledge:

1. Bacteria are actually living 'bugs'. They are 'living things'. They can multiply and take-over your bladder, for example, and stop your bladder from doing its job.
2. Viruses are 1000 times smaller than bacteria and are not 'living things'. But they can replicate and spread and cause harmful chemical effects on our bodies.
3. Enzymes are simply chemical entities. They are just strings of chemical combinations. Within every one of the billions of cells in our bodies, there are enzymes.

It is extremely sad that the Medical Establishment has allowed the word DISEASE to lose all meaning. One can understand that malaria can be described as a 'disease', but one cannot understand the idea that a heart condition is a 'disease'. I am 73 years old an in good heath, but my right leg aches a little all the time. Is my right leg diseased? Don't be silly! My little body is getting old and is thus not as able to repair breakdowns as easily and as rapidly as it used to do. Is my heart also becoming aged? Of course it is! Ageing is not a disease - it is the breakdown of chemical processes within the body, consequent upon the 'wearing out' of repair mechanisms.

It is sad that Tobacco Control have all the slick mantras. It is sad that TC has classed all humans as 'typical' (meaning 'all constructed bodily exactly the same'). Only by doing so can TC maintain its grip.

Mark Wadsworth said...

I don't get the argument about smokers changing brands, it is of no relevance. The point is that different cigarettes taste slightly different, and they would still taste slightly different if they were in plain packaging.

V Hale said...

Whilst I fight vehemently against the anti-obesity brigade in most circumstances, I couldn't help but laugh at the few comments on the article which commented on her weight, because with her hypocrisy she's asking for it. There were the usual rebuttals of "ahh but obesity doesn't harm other people". These people should really watch out because the health nutters will do anything to make the public loathe anyone who doesn't worship at the altar of "health" as evidenced by this utterly ludicrous article