Wednesday, February 2, 2011


I like this from Frank Davis about how the Dutch won the war in Holland against the multi-billion pound Tobacco Control Industry.

TC still dosn't get it and shrieks like a toddler having a tantrum that Bogey Men from the Big Tobacco companies have pulled the strings in the background when the war on choice in Holland was won by the little man and woman who just want control of their own lives back.

Way to go Holland - where's next?

H/T Bill Gibson. Bold emphasis mine - because they are the bits I like best.

Tobacco Control simply don't understand why the Dutch Smoking Ban has been (partially) overturned, and are desperately trying to find out what went wrong. How could it happen? They're convinced that Big Tobacco must've been lobbying ministers and funding protest groups. But in fact in Holland it was the small bars who came together to fight the ban with their own money. Big Tobacco played no part in it at all, despite allegations that they did. But Tobacco Control is stuck in a mindset that can only recognise wealthy tobacco companies as their enemy. They don't seem to understand that smoking bans actually do a great deal of damage to a great many people, and some of those people are going to fight them, using their own resources. It seems that TC believe their own propaganda, that they're 'helping' people, when in fact they're trampling on millions of people. All over the world, ordinary people are becoming activists of one kind or other in the fight against TC. And, as with global warming, the principal forum is the blogosphere. But TC still has all its guns aimed at the tobacco companies, and they're all facing the wrong way to deal with this mounting global upsurge of grassroot resistance.

It seems that the problem in Holland was that Tobacco Control had a monopoly on the tobacco-related information supplied to the media and to the government. They could tell any lie they liked, and it would be swallowed whole. But in Holland the stranglehold of TC has been broken by the concerted resistance of the small bars and their private supporters, and the media and the government has begun to find out that there are people who contest many of TC's claims, and who can show that TC has been lying. The credibility of TC has been tarnished. They are no longer being believed quite as readily as they were before. And the news is gradually spreading from Holland to Belgium and England and Spain, where TC has a similar arm-lock on news.

Tobacco Control is beginning to face the same sort of problem as the IPCC and the high priesthood of the global warming movement. It's a wealthy institution (some $800 million of taxpayers' money from smokers helps fund TC's war on smokers), and it's used to fighting with other big, wealthy institutions - like tobacco companies. These ponderous, muscle-bound institutions have no idea what to do about the blogosphere on which thousands of little one-man (or one-woman) blogs and forums have started talking to each other, and increasingly ignore the established institutional authorities who used to have a monopoly on information.

Can Tobacco Control (and the global warming priesthood) adapt to the new situation, and mount a successful defence of their respective orthodoxies? Probably not. They're too big and unwieldy. And they're stuck in rigid, outdated mindsets. They're like conventional armies facing guerrilla armies in asymmetric warfare. They have big howitzers and tanks to fight other conventional armies, but these are no good against a dispersed guerrilla army that never engages in pitched battle, but instead constantly harasses the conventional army, and slowly wears it down.

I can think of one or two things that TC might do restore the situation. Because one obvious message is that... But, hey, wait a minute! Why the hell should I help these bastards out?

Tobacco Control is something to be destroyed.