Monday, November 13, 2006

Smoking Bans Hurt Business

Two interesting blog posts on the impact of smoking bans in Canada.

In Edmonton with the most draconian smoking ban in Canada bingos have lost $6 million dollars reports
Surreality Times.

ST also exposes the taxpayer funded cabal behind the anti-smoking crusade. Who are pushing their agenda on the current crop of wannabe Ralphs.

Werner Patels takes up the issue of the Quebec smoking ban;
Qu├ębec bar owners to go to court

The smoking ban in Edmonton will have a direct impact on casinos now that there is a new casino just outside the city limits which allows for smoking. Rivals say Enoch casino has advantage

Since the anti-smoking lobby is directly funded by taxpayers who smoke is it any wonder they want to increase tobbaco taxes?Anti-smoking Group Urges $2 Increase In Cost Of Cigarettes Gives them more money for their lobby industry, and it is a very lucrative industry for doctors and the government.



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Mike said...

He he...Eugene, I take it you smoke eh?

Well, I don't know about Edmonton, but it did not hurt business in Ottawa any, except for the initial dip.

That being said, I understand the libertarian take on this and, to an extent, I am sympathetic. But these are motions created by local councils, and the occasional provincial government, so subsidiarity applies. Also, the Big Tobacco companies have flouted the law for years - actively participating in smuggling, marketing cigarettes to kids, using every loophole to avoid taxes. Perhaps if the smokes were made by small local user groups I'd feel different, but they aren't.

And using the whole "but outside the city limits they CAN smoke" excuse is a parroting of the right-wing, race to the bottom logic on giving tax breaks to Encana and Imperial Oil (or building them a pipeline).

BTW, nice pic of Django Rhienhart!

Saskboy said...

Even though your site still has popups, I had to comment.

The smoking ban in SK, increased business for restaurants in most locations after a brief inital dip where dips had to make a small adjustment in their approach to smoking in public - get up from table, go outside, finish drug intake, come back inside.

kurichina said...

As someone who's highly allergic to tobacco, smoking bans have certainly increased my business.

I'm surprised someone as pro-worker as you generally are, Eugene, would be against something that directly affects the health of often low-paid and low-benefits workers like waitstaff and other service workers. It was unions who were the driving force behind smoking bans in British Columbia and several other jurisdictions.

eugene plawiuk said...

Yes I do smoke. And as a long time smoker I have been courtesy about not smoking around people who are affected by it. This however is an issue of CHOICE, which as progressives you should support. Rather progressives have jumped on the band wagon of prohibition, interfering in my right to smoke in public.
Big Tobacco has nothing to do with these forms of prohibitive legislation. It is not affecting Big Tobbacco but rather the victims/addicts of tobbacco.

You are blaming the victims with these laws. So as a libertarian I do take issue with these draconian measures, which appear to be spreading to impact on smoking in public in general, to be banned in Berkely, and smoking in ones own home, see my smoking articles on this.

Smoking in the workplace is a chimera to appease unions who have little clout to actually enforce health and safety legislation in the workplace.
Its a backdoor attempt to deal with other workplace issues, such as toxic chemicals failure to enforce WHMIS regs, underage staffing in service sector, poor H&S in non unionized workplaces.

As for unions backing this well unions have backed stupid laws before. For instance unions in Canada opposed Chinese immigration and supported the Head Tax. Unions in the US opposed unionizing black workers, calling them scabs.

It is a matter of choice, something progressives support for women and their right to choose abortion. But not for smokers.

If a worker wishes to work in a smoking work place that should be their right. A proper libertarian approach would leave it up to the employer and workers and customers.

Bars which need staff should have to advertise that they are a smoking bar.

Proper ventilation and exhausting is available to reduce the impact of second hand smoke, but the anti-smoking lobby rejects these workplace reforms since their political objective is to ban smoking period.

As for allergies to smoke I am skeptical from personal experience of people coughing around me over my smoking and then toking up.

The amount of particilates in sefcond hand smoke is no different than particalates from diesel buses and other automotive exhausts, or from a backyard fire or campfire, but folks don't go into fits over that.

This whole issue is a backdoor way of attacking Big Tobbacco not by criticizing them or taking them to court for their practices, and by the way some Tobbacco companies in Canada are unionized, but by attacking smokers.

And the stupidity of the allergy campaigns currently underway with peanuts, well don't get me started on that one.

There are many environmental health and safety issues we need to address when dealing with allergies and asthma, banning products is not the solution.

Rather making the workplace a safer place to work by creating a health atmosphere with technology is the way to go. But that is expensive. And it is always easier to cry prohibition than to provide solutions to the problem.

Finally empirical evidence shows that yes smoking bans hurt business. It is propaganda from the anti-smoking lobby that denies this.

Saskboy said...

It's an issue of drug abuse.

"You are blaming the victims with these laws." While smokers are victims of Big Tobacco and their poor choice to start smoking, they are victimizing others by smoking in public spaces.

Heroin users have their dirty needles, and smokers have both airbourne poison, and flaming butts as waste as strikes against them getting high in public spaces.

eugene plawiuk said...

Poor choice of smoking. Humans have been smoking since we discovered fire. It alters conciousness read Dr. Weil on this. Shamans smoke and use it as medicine. You have a moral bias Saskboy, and as I said on Werner Patels page you are polluting my environment more by driving your car than I am by smoking. Give up your car and save humanity if you are going to be morally correct.

Saskboy said...

While society tries to compel people to drive, it doesn't require us to smoke to get anywhere [except poverty and the hospital]. As a nicotine addict, I expect you to say whatever you have to to defend your drug of choice. And as a part time driver, you can expect me to justify my vehicle's downsides. How about we leave it there?

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