[FoRK] Bush's tanking approval ratings

Ian Andrew Bell (FoRK) fork at ianbell.com
Tue Apr 12 00:48:54 PDT 2005

I think you're missing the point Jeff.

What I experienced in a 10,000 square foot night club was about 60-100 
people creating a health hazard for the other 900 people in the place 
through an act which by their own admission has no social or personal 
benefit.  Rather to the contrary, it gives people lung cancer and makes 
guys like me physically ill.  It is the very definition of antisocial 
behaviour.  On the street corner a single smoker caused me difficulty 
from 50 yards away.  Do you think he cared?

Cedar in Austin?  You're comparing a benign force of nature to deviant 
behaviour that has been proven, clinically, to cause terminal illness 
in humans and other species.  There are plenty of things in this world 
we can't control, like brain tumors, but we sure as hell can stop Lung 
Cancer.. unfortunately first we need to cure ignorance and that, it 
seems, is spreading.

I'm all for there being smokers' bars but I was referring to a time 
when I had no other choice.  Every bar, every club, every pub, every 
restaurant, every place of business, all of these were for smokers by 
default.  If one is particularly talented as a club Disc Jockey (or 
waitress, or bartender) one does not have a lot of choices as regards 
where their workplace will be; whether it's smoking or non.  I tried to 
do it for years and was eventually forced to retire by poor health.  
And yeah I got another job, but why should I have to just because <10% 
of the guests to a particular establishment want to light a toxic mix 
of chemicals, plastic, and tree leaves on fire between their lips?

This fucking sense of entitlement that we Westerners on the left AND 
the right carry like a shield -- "It's a free country, I can do what I 
want!"  -- is exactly what has caused the failure of Liberalism.  Yes, 
you can smoke outdoors.  Yes, you can say anything you want on cable 
television.  Yes, you can drive a Hummer H2 50 miles to work every day 
at 12MPG all alone.  Yes, you can toss that tin can in the garbage when 
there's a recycling bin 30 feet further away.

But should you?  Is it good for the rest of us?

Does there need to be a law against everything that's bad because 
people are just too fucking ignorant, selfish, and indignant to have 
any consideration for their fellow man?  If so I have a great political 
system for you:  Totalitarianism.  Maybe we Westerners are just so 
collectively stupid and spoon-fed that we need to see every pillar of 
our social structure collapse before we take action against the 
underpinning malignancy.

Please, tell me which ... I'm willing to work towards either.  Because 
what I've been doing, namely considering the fates of those around me 
in balance with my own, clearly isn't bloody-well working.

The original point of this was to critique your allegory between 
smoking and SUVs.  They're not the same.  The causal link is not as 
strong... the influencers are deeply more complex.  And the 
anti-smoking lobby is clearly in the right.  So yeah, call me an 
anti-smoking nazi, but we just keep on winning.  Biochemistry is on our 


On 11-Apr-05, at 8:14 PM, Jeff Bone wrote:

> Sheesh, Ian.  Bottom line:  nobody *forced* you to take that job.  
> Take responsibility for your own choices and let other people live 
> their lives.  And get real:  occupational exposure to second-hand 
> smoke isn't going to kill anybody.

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