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Author Topic: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question  (Read 9414 times)

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Offline Noelle

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #50 on: July 18, 2011, 05:41:23 PM »
But what did segregating people solve?

...Thank you for proving my point about forcing narrow world-views?

So here's a thing:
Quote
You take that chance, either way. It's better to come to a quick solution and implement it for the best results. You break down the statistics, you throw the irrelevant percentages to the side and you make a choice from there. Like how a computer works. After that it just depends where the priorities of the majority in control sit.

Computers work using logic.

But here's the real kicker. Compare the bold sentence here to the one in the previous quote:

Quote
Actually, logic is that pleasing no one and accomplishing nothing servers no point or purpose. "Compromise" isn't actually a logical answer to a solution, it is a "common sense" solution. And using yourself as an example is now talking human (singular). I'm talking humans (plural). Humans, as a group, are far from rational or logical creatures. Thus throwing up a quick statistical solution to the problem... does not work.

So...we should analyze statistics (...might I suggest doing so using logic?)...but then we shouldn't because they don't work? You're offering solutions -- and a breath later, you say those solutions don't work. I'm a little dubious of your methods here, to be honest, if they are so wildly inconsistent.

Quote
I'm also not human. :p

Have you reported yourself to any scientists lately for testing? You could make a lot of money, and I think we'd all be fascinated to see what your DNA looks like in comparison to the average homo sapien wandering this rock. James Randi has a million dollars waiting for you to show that you are paranormal, I encourage you to go claim it as soon as possible. The JREF will help you plan out fair testing, even.

Quote
I have never once, ever, been honestly presented with something that could be shown as not having ulterior motives in today's environment.

Likewise, you're pretty sparse on the evidence proving the contrary.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2011, 05:43:26 PM by Noelle »

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #51 on: July 18, 2011, 06:50:38 PM »
I am very divided on this. On the one hand, I have never been a smoker and I'm aware of the number of people who die or catch illnesses from smoking. On the other hand, I find it scary how fast and how...brutally what used to be a perfectly ordinary habit for a large part of the population has been branded as sick and pushed out of public spaces, even out of bars, trains and entertainment places. It's been done with a relentlessness and a lack of good faith in that people would be able take care of their actions without being coerced, an equation of the worst buggers with everybody else, that really aren't sensible or good public spirit. What other kind of everyday action would be forced into cramped street corners, entrance canopies and so on because it had antagonized a relatively small but vociferous bunch of people who didn't share the habit? Smokers and non-smokers used to be able to get on with each other and set up informal limits and I don't think it was a question of the smokers forcing their dirt on everybody else every day without any consideration.

With respect, I have a suspicion that the real motive that gave a strong push to the anti-smoking lobby when it became a big public issue in the 90s wasn't so much about health, it was about corporations wanting to speed up the tempo at the workplace and achieve control of their employees, and also about not risking to offend some of the customer base. Smoking breaks at work used to be a half regular thing, and a chance to wind down for a moment or to get the space to think/talk through stuff informally without being face to face with the people who were going to buy the solution. In a new, increasingly customer-oriented age, perhaps the managerial class didn't want employees to have that kind of freedom anymore; it was seen as improductive and worrying. So they would latch on to a rising opinion trend against smoking and move to squeeze the habit out, step by step, while shouldering themselves on medics, politicians and opinion groups. Now I think the intention by those who started this "on the floor" has been motivated by health concerns, but the unrelenting implementation - no smoking at all in bars and cafés, office rooms, on public transport, on the beach, etc - may have been driven more by the need to tighten the schedule of work everywhere. After a certain point it just becomes self-justifying - "Smoking is bad and I can do without it, so everyone should do without it!" - which really isn't nice and not very civilized.

I agree that we make concessions to other people every day and that we should, to make things run smoother for each other. But I'm not sure the anti-smoking wave is fully motivated by that. There is no corresponding crusade towards alcohol although wine and liquor are much more destructive on many levels - drink related diseases, violence, poverty, obesity, domestic abuse, road accidents - than normal smoking habits. And the effects of passive smoking have been greatly overstated I think. Most smokers do not really endanger their lives to a big degree and don't endanger the lives or health of others nearby at all. When the claim is that "smoking kills some people and there are some effects of inhaling other people's smoke so everyone must really stop smoking",. this implies that your body and your habits don't really belong to yourself but are on loan from the community. Is that sound reasoning?
« Last Edit: July 18, 2011, 09:31:27 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Will

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #52 on: July 18, 2011, 08:42:28 PM »
There was an effort to stamp out alcohol, once, long before anyone thought to care about cigarettes.  It was called Prohibition.

As for the bit about companies wanting to curb smoke breaks - how could the lost productivity generated by 5 minute breaks be anywhere close to the time and effort that's been devoted to demonizing cigarettes?

Also, "And the effects of passive smoking have been greatly overstated I think" ?  Your whole argument sort of hinges on that claim, but I'm not sure what credentials you have to make such a claim to begin with.

Offline Noelle

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #53 on: July 18, 2011, 09:11:01 PM »
I don't advocate banning cigarettes -- not at all. In fact, I advocate legalizing most (if not all) drugs for personal consumption with similar limitations as we have now with alcohol (driving under the influence, public intox, etc). It's not the cigarette smoking that bothers me -- even if I think it's a wasteful, nasty habit, so is spending money on any modern movie starring Kate Hudson, but I don't think we should bar her from making more crappy romantic comedies.

In as far as anti-smoking goes, I think you're kind of stretching it with the idea of curbing breaks. Getting breaks proportional to the time you work is federally mandated -- I'm aware that not all jobs are great about following through on it (former bartender: what's a break?), but if they were really looking to push productivity to new levels, I'm thinking we would've seen labor laws repealed an awful long time ago, though arguably the greater threat here is the good ol' American push to lengthen work hours and slash days with little to no vacation.

In some ways, I can agree with your sentiments -- the anti-smoking push does get...well, very pushy at times, especially when you have Oscar Obesity or Sedentary Sally telling Smoker Sam very hypocritically and self-righteously that he's killing himself with every puff on the ol' cancer stick. I guess I kind of fail to see where banning smoking on beaches links up to the push to make Americans work more. Wouldn't it just be easier to schedule them for longer hours and pressure them not to take their breaks rather than spending billions of dollars in anti-smoking campaigns? Bosses seem awfully good at that already :\

As for how overstated second-hand smoking is or isn't...The numbers here, comparatively to the total population of the US, give fairly low percentages with the bulk of the harm being done to children, though I would argue it's kind of hard to track what is related to second-hand smoke and what isn't, given some of its negative effects develop over years of exposure rather than immediate reactions.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #54 on: July 18, 2011, 09:25:18 PM »
In as far as anti-smoking goes, I think you're kind of stretching it with the idea of curbing breaks. Getting breaks proportional to the time you work is federally mandated -- I'm aware that not all jobs are great about following through on it (former bartender: what's a break?), but if they were really looking to push productivity to new levels, I'm thinking we would've seen labor laws repealed an awful long time ago, though arguably the greater threat here is the good ol' American push to lengthen work hours and slash days with little to no vacation.

Just as a note, I've been in jobs where yes, the managers gave everyone their regulated breaks, but then the smokers would take 'smoke breaks' in addition to the normal unpaid lunch or paid 15.  I doubt that 'big business' was behind the anti-smoking push, but I'm betting they didn't raise much of a fuss.

Offline Noelle

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #55 on: July 18, 2011, 09:37:50 PM »
Oh no, I don't doubt that at all. I was the only non-smoker at the bar I worked at, so I often forewent many of my breaks to let the others go smoke while it wasn't busy. Depends on the job and the employer, I suppose.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #56 on: July 18, 2011, 09:46:54 PM »
Just as a note, I've been in jobs where yes, the managers gave everyone their regulated breaks, but then the smokers would take 'smoke breaks' in addition to the normal unpaid lunch or paid 15.  I doubt that 'big business' was behind the anti-smoking push, but I'm betting they didn't raise much of a fuss.

Yes, I think it was two elements (or more) coming together. There's been honest concern about public health and about people with bronchial diseases, allergies, children being affected by their parents before or after birth and so on - but I would say the impact of these concerns wouldn't have been so huge, or so pushy, as Noelle put it, if business execs and boards hadn't had their own motives for catching on to it: the wish to speed up the pace at work and to inject a feeling that the employees would not be able to shield off the eyes of their superiors or their customers. And corporations have become much more averse to hiring people who seem to have had any kind of health issues, even minor ones, in the past, or who don't look like a clean-cut image of health. It kind of mirrors the trend that so many jobs are more faced at the customer now, the employee has become the billboard of his/her employer and is expected to put in not just work effort but an "image effort" to fit in.

With smoking on the beach, or at an amusement park or at airports (by travellers and people waiting for arrivals), they don't have any direct relation to a need for control, sure. The reason there is health concerns, but IMO it's an overstretch in those locations - the risk for health hazard from inhalation of other people's smoke at an airport or a beach must be near nil - and it wouldn't have been politically possible to push it that far if there hadn't been this general lunge in society to push away smoking into the very private or into no-man's-land - and I think that drive would likely not have gained such force if it wasn't for motives that didn't have much to do with health.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2011, 09:58:14 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Synecdoche17

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #57 on: July 18, 2011, 10:49:09 PM »
So, gaggedLouise, when do you expect corporations to ban coffee breaks? I've seen far more time wasted on grabbing a cup of Joe than on smoking, in all the various places I've worked, and much like smokers claim they need smokes to unwind and be more productive, coffee addicts claim they need coffee to focus and be more productive. I really don't see a lot of lobbying to institute bans of coffee on workplace premises, or force coffee drinkers to consume their filthy brew on the streets.



I really can't believe the amount of hyperbole being thrown around to defend a habit that gives the addict and the people around the addict freaking cancer. CANCER. Yes, I am all for throwing smokers out of bars. I came to a bar to get drunk and chatter, not throw away my lungs and kidneys. Your right to swing your fist, to quote the old saying, ends where my nose begins.
Also, the "let's trust people to make their own decisions" argument? What part of "addiction" is unclear to its advocates? By definition, an addiction is not something most people can be trusted to kick without assistance.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #58 on: July 19, 2011, 04:08:33 AM »
So, gaggedLouise, when do you expect corporations to ban coffee breaks? I've seen far more time wasted on grabbing a cup of Joe than on smoking, in all the various places I've worked, and much like smokers claim they need smokes to unwind and be more productive, coffee addicts claim they need coffee to focus and be more productive. I really don't see a lot of lobbying to institute bans of coffee on workplace premises, or force coffee drinkers to consume their filthy brew on the streets.

Oh, I'm sure many employers would like to cut back on coffee breaks. What they lack is something widely accepted to act as an excuse they might push in front of their desire to see such moves.


Quote
I really can't believe the amount of hyperbole being thrown around to defend a habit that gives the addict and the people around the addict freaking cancer. CANCER. Yes, I am all for throwing smokers out of bars. I came to a bar to get drunk and chatter, not throw away my lungs and kidneys. Your right to swing your fist, to quote the old saying, ends where my nose begins.

Lots of things can be labeled "grave health hazards for everyone" and "obnoxious habits" if you really want to slam the thing in question. SUVs are a big hazard to people in any major city - they produce much more of filthy exhausts than ordinary cars, not to mention buses and trains, and toss them around at a height closer to our inhalatory organs. Plus traffic accidents involving SUVs may turn out much moire devastating because they are heavier, and they're also, indirectly, a link in the global warming chain. I don't think there's any doubt that the exhaust gases produced by traffic is a much worse health hazard than "passive smoking" - but getting at people's SUVs and other heavy and spunk-producing cars wouldn't be socially acceptable. Especiallly not aiming to outlaw the driving of an SUV in some parts of cities, as long as other cars are allowed there. It wouldn't pass, either, to insinuate that people who have SUVs are fat jugheads or morally inferior by virtue of the fact of their owning such a car.

Last time I checked there was no one saying "You can't hope to get hired for this well-paid job unless you get rid of your SUV, it's not in tune with what our company expects or what we want to show our customers". With smoking, that kind of pious, pompous reasoning seems perfectly okay.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2011, 04:23:32 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Zakharra

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #59 on: July 19, 2011, 09:15:43 AM »
I really can't believe the amount of hyperbole being thrown around to defend a habit that gives the addict and the people around the addict freaking cancer. CANCER. Yes, I am all for throwing smokers out of bars. I came to a bar to get drunk and chatter, not throw away my lungs and kidneys. Your right to swing your fist, to quote the old saying, ends where my nose begins.
Also, the "let's trust people to make their own decisions" argument? What part of "addiction" is unclear to its advocates? By definition, an addiction is not something most people can be trusted to kick without assistance.

 Bolded emphasis is mine. Alcohol is addicting too. If you're so against smoking, why not alcohol as well? That is far more destructive to society than smoking ever is. As others have pointed out.

Offline AndyZ

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #60 on: July 20, 2011, 02:27:49 PM »
So, gaggedLouise, when do you expect corporations to ban coffee breaks? I've seen far more time wasted on grabbing a cup of Joe than on smoking, in all the various places I've worked, and much like smokers claim they need smokes to unwind and be more productive, coffee addicts claim they need coffee to focus and be more productive. I really don't see a lot of lobbying to institute bans of coffee on workplace premises, or force coffee drinkers to consume their filthy brew on the streets.


Reminds me of this one girl who lamented how smokers get smoke breaks but she wasn't allowed to go out and get a clean air break.  Scott Adams advocated smoking in one of his books purely because you get smoke breaks.  Whether you believe that smoke breaks should be allowed or not, you should be allowed an equal amount of break time even if you don't smoke.

Bolded emphasis is mine. Alcohol is addicting too. If you're so against smoking, why not alcohol as well? That is far more destructive to society than smoking ever is. As others have pointed out.

Smoking gives off smoke which harms innocent bystanders, children and so on.  Alcohol does not, unless you're behind the wheel of a car, which they have banned.

Offline Noelle

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #61 on: July 20, 2011, 04:46:11 PM »
Smoking gives off smoke which harms innocent bystanders, children and so on.  Alcohol does not, unless you're behind the wheel of a car, which they have banned.

This is almost always proven to be a very poor point to stand on in these kinds of debates. While I agree that smoking has as more direct effect on bystanders, the argument can be made that you can get drunk and make poor choices, like destroying property or punching someone in the face. Prescription pill abuse, gambling, marijuana, the list goes on -- they can tear families apart and cause financial ruin.

Offline DudelRok

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #62 on: July 26, 2011, 08:43:15 AM »
...Thank you for proving my point about forcing narrow world-views?

So here's a thing:
Computers work using logic.

But here's the real kicker. Compare the bold sentence here to the one in the previous quote:

So...we should analyze statistics (...might I suggest doing so using logic?)...but then we shouldn't because they don't work? You're offering solutions -- and a breath later, you say those solutions don't work. I'm a little dubious of your methods here, to be honest, if they are so wildly inconsistent.

Have you reported yourself to any scientists lately for testing? You could make a lot of money, and I think we'd all be fascinated to see what your DNA looks like in comparison to the average homo sapien wandering this rock. James Randi has a million dollars waiting for you to show that you are paranormal, I encourage you to go claim it as soon as possible. The JREF will help you plan out fair testing, even.

Likewise, you're pretty sparse on the evidence proving the contrary.

Let me put it this way: Meeting in the middle solves nothing (obviously sold by the fact this thread exists as a new middle is now being demanded) while simply shutting down half the people and telling them to shut up or go away actually gets things done. The choice has been made and they must either go elsewhere or deal with what they got.

As much as one might or might not like it, is not the point. As much as the solution might be narrow minded but it's fast, it's easily handled (anyone who doesn't like it, tough titties). Statistically speaking, by the way, smokers/drinkers/users/etc come out on top. Why? Because we live in a consumer based world and those who spend money rather than cost money are your government's friends. There is big money in addictive substances, and they are controlled by big business which holds dominance in the US government.

I'm anti smoking on all counts, by the way. Freaking HATE the stuff and the people that come with it. But it helps more to keep it than to hinder it, especially since it doesn't have any confirmed facts that it does, indeed, harm others.

However, if we MUST regulate smokers... then don't do it with arbitrary inside/outside laws. TAX THEM! Make being a smoker something you have to pay for as a luxury (or in the case of the two who live with me, sacrifice FOOD for it) If you want to smoke inside, have the smoking area... but make it cost more. Remove the right aspect of it and make it a much more obvious privilege. Work it in reverse, too. Don't wanna deal with smokers? Go to restaurants/bars/etc that charge more to keep their air clean and fresh!

If we are going to live in a consumerist world, why, oh why, are we NOT embracing it? Make those things that are privileges much, much, more obvious.

Sugar, red meat, salt, fatty food, etc...

Those work in reverse. Healthy/good not-fast food costs MORE than cheap readily made garbage. We take that principle, and just reapply it.

Offline Jude

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #63 on: July 26, 2011, 06:44:22 PM »
But there is evidence that second-hand smoking hurts others.  When they ban it inside bars and restaurants in a county, the number of service industry workers who show up at the hospital with smoking-related noticeably decreases in county hospitals.  There are numerous other pieces of evidence as well.  I can dig up the data if you like.

As far as the cigarette tax thing... we already tax them.  Are you saying we should increase the taxes?

Offline Noelle

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #64 on: July 26, 2011, 07:00:16 PM »
As much as one might or might not like it, is not the point. As much as the solution might be narrow minded but it's fast, it's easily handled (anyone who doesn't like it, tough titties). Statistically speaking, by the way, smokers/drinkers/users/etc come out on top. Why? Because we live in a consumer based world and those who spend money rather than cost money are your government's friends. There is big money in addictive substances, and they are controlled by big business which holds dominance in the US government.

Okay, so let's totally disregard our democracy. This seems like a great idea -- now how can a person force their agenda for what's fast and easy...

Hmm, alright. So let's say 'fuck gays' and ban gay marriage all across the board. In fact, let's push some legislation through that makes it illegal to engage in homosexual acts and charge fines on those accused and found to be guilty, because that generates revenue! Who cares that it's narrow-minded, it's fast and easy and much more convenient than having to argue in court, make insurance companies cover gay couples, and extend tax breaks to even more married couples!

Let's let women and minorities earn less than white, middle-aged men for the rest of forever because it would be a pain in the ass and more expensive to compensate them fairly. It's too hard to give up social inequalities because they take too long to settle into popularity. While we're at it, let's just toss out compromise and decide that nobody has to pay taxes ever because we can't decide who gets taxed what. Or maybe everyone has to surrender all of their paycheck because they can't be trusted to spend it on things that are good for them; how can we know they're not going to use that dollar to buy a Hershey bar? Exactly.

You know what's easier than surrendering your white privilege and treating others like equal human beings? Slavery. And it's more profitable, which as you know, is the bottom line here in America. Let's return to that, Affirmative Action is just a giant waste of our time and resources and it is a lot harder to judge if someone brings up a case against a company than if we just returned to everyone but white people being made to work for little to nothing. It's too hard for me to give up my special treatment, so now I don't have to. BOOM, solved.

Why do we need to compromise and say you have to pay into Social Security to get it back later? Why do we need to compromise and legislate certain laws that protect the poorest? Why do we compromise and give up some of our own privilege so those who are systematically oppressed have a fair crack? Why do we compromise and decide that profit isn't quite as important as basic human rights and establish work safety conditions?

Oh, that's right. Because we live in a democracy and having one authoritarian party shove things down your throat without your say is...authoritarianism. Because it's not freedom. Maybe being perpetually oppressed and nannied and told what to do whether or not you like it is your idea of a great country, but it certainly doesn't seem to pan out well historically. China's attempts at policing their citizens -- how's that going for them?

Quote
I'm anti smoking on all counts, by the way. Freaking HATE the stuff and the people that come with it. But it helps more to keep it than to hinder it, especially since it doesn't have any confirmed facts that it does, indeed, harm others.

Except it does.

Quote
However, if we MUST regulate smokers... then don't do it with arbitrary inside/outside laws. TAX THEM! Make being a smoker something you have to pay for as a luxury (or in the case of the two who live with me, sacrifice FOOD for it) If you want to smoke inside, have the smoking area... but make it cost more. Remove the right aspect of it and make it a much more obvious privilege. Work it in reverse, too. Don't wanna deal with smokers? Go to restaurants/bars/etc that charge more to keep their air clean and fresh!

We already tax smokers. Smoking areas have already been shown over and over to be ineffective -- there is no such thing as a smoking area, seeing as smoke doesn't follow imaginary barriers and permeates everything. Also an issue: it's probably not good business. A business that charges more for clean air is not likely to stay in business for long, and you set up the model that only those who can afford it deserve a clean, healthy environment. What happened to you being about nannying to death for "what's best"?

Your theory is wildly inconsistent with itself and deeply hypocritical. You've even made a compromise with yourself -- You hate smoking, you hate the people that come with it, and yet if we must have smoking, let's tax them and give them their own special sections.

Quote
com·pro·mise
   [kom-pruh-mahyz] Show IPA noun, verb, -mised, -mis·ing.
–noun
1.
a settlement of differences by mutual concessions; an agreement reached by adjustment of conflicting or opposing claims, principles, etc., by reciprocal modification of demands.

Sounds quite a bit like a mutual concession to me.

Offline DudelRok

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #65 on: July 29, 2011, 06:24:16 AM »
But there is evidence that second-hand smoking hurts others.  When they ban it inside bars and restaurants in a county, the number of service industry workers who show up at the hospital with smoking-related noticeably decreases in county hospitals.  There are numerous other pieces of evidence as well.  I can dig up the data if you like.

There's plenty of evidence that says you hurt yourself with it, and circumstantial evidence you harm others. Well, except for unborn children but that's also a self issue and comes more into when it's the rights of the infant over/under that of the mother.

Quote
As far as the cigarette tax thing... we already tax them.  Are you saying we should increase the taxes?

If people want the product hindered more (which is the only reason for waring labels) yes.. otherwise, no. IN FACT that original tax was to discourage people as much as possible and many people do not smoke because they can not afford to (that or they make concessions).

I'm saying if people REALLY want to keep the non-smokers rights in mind, then what they need do is use their environment to their advantage and cause a tweak in already existing mechanics rather than create new ones. Or they should shut up as they have already been given more than they deserve. It's a basic, and problematic, human-entitlement issue. One half believes it deserves certain things, and so does the other half... answering one leaves the other out in the cold. Easy solution? Give neither anything or chop the proverbial baby in half and see who bows out.

Okay, so let's totally disregard our democracy. This seems like a great idea -- now how can a person force their agenda for what's fast and easy...

Hmm, alright. So let's say 'fuck gays' and ban gay marriage all across the board. In fact, let's push some legislation through that makes it illegal to engage in homosexual acts and charge fines on those accused and found to be guilty, because that generates revenue! Who cares that it's narrow-minded, it's fast and easy and much more convenient than having to argue in court, make insurance companies cover gay couples, and extend tax breaks to even more married couples!

Let's let women and minorities earn less than white, middle-aged men for the rest of forever because it would be a pain in the ass and more expensive to compensate them fairly. It's too hard to give up social inequalities because they take too long to settle into popularity. While we're at it, let's just toss out compromise and decide that nobody has to pay taxes ever because we can't decide who gets taxed what. Or maybe everyone has to surrender all of their paycheck because they can't be trusted to spend it on things that are good for them; how can we know they're not going to use that dollar to buy a Hershey bar? Exactly.

You know what's easier than surrendering your white privilege and treating others like equal human beings? Slavery. And it's more profitable, which as you know, is the bottom line here in America. Let's return to that, Affirmative Action is just a giant waste of our time and resources and it is a lot harder to judge if someone brings up a case against a company than if we just returned to everyone but white people being made to work for little to nothing. It's too hard for me to give up my special treatment, so now I don't have to. BOOM, solved.

Why do we need to compromise and say you have to pay into Social Security to get it back later? Why do we need to compromise and legislate certain laws that protect the poorest? Why do we compromise and give up some of our own privilege so those who are systematically oppressed have a fair crack? Why do we compromise and decide that profit isn't quite as important as basic human rights and establish work safety conditions?

Oh, that's right. Because we live in a democracy and having one authoritarian party shove things down your throat without your say is...authoritarianism. Because it's not freedom. Maybe being perpetually oppressed and nannied and told what to do whether or not you like it is your idea of a great country, but it certainly doesn't seem to pan out well historically. China's attempts at policing their citizens -- how's that going for them?

Your examples are all religiously or ethically motivated, smoking is neither a religious or ethical matter. The right to smoke arguably is, but such things are actually privilege, not right. You do not have a right to inject heroin, yeah?

I mean, prohibition was only revoked due to the crime... it had nothing to do with anyone's rights. And there are countless drugs already bluntly illegal or regulated EXACTLY as per my example. Marijuana is strictly government controlled or it's possession and an arrestable offense. Ever heard of such a thing as a dry county?

Now if we are talking non-smokers rights and if there really is harm to come from those who do smoke (which is an Ethical issue) then don't argue the problem, just remove smoking from the equation and make it another punishable offense. If you can't as it'll dump the economy in the toilet, you tax... hmm.. suppose that's another economy dumping issue, guess we'll just make arbitrary rules about smoking locations until it's not allowed in public at all.

Just cut the line rather than play the tug of war.

Where it not for the fact that tobacco was one of the largest grown crops in the US, and the crime that would come with the sudden ban this wouldn't even an issue. They'd just slap the crap as illegal and move on. XD There wouldn't even be a debate.

If corn suddenly had health risks, you think they'd do anything about it? There is a lot of circumstantial evidence about it, as well.

Quote
Except it does.

Risks upon yourself and unborn children, yes, but second hand smoke claims are still not founded.

Quote
We already tax smokers. Smoking areas have already been shown over and over to be ineffective -- there is no such thing as a smoking area, seeing as smoke doesn't follow imaginary barriers and permeates everything. Also an issue: it's probably not good business. A business that charges more for clean air is not likely to stay in business for long, and you set up the model that only those who can afford it deserve a clean, healthy environment. What happened to you being about nannying to death for "what's best"?

Your theory is wildly inconsistent with itself and deeply hypocritical. You've even made a compromise with yourself -- You hate smoking, you hate the people that come with it, and yet if we must have smoking, let's tax them and give them their own special sections.

Sounds quite a bit like a mutual concession to me.

It's actually not a mutual concession, at all. It's privilege marking and making it so that only people who can afford the things can have them. Putting non-smokers drastically in the lead and removing the entire "health issue market" that is the middle class.

Most people who smoke are not made of money, they are lower on the economical chain (and much greater in number). The problem with that is the smoking companies will not like this as it hurts their bottom line by targeting their two primary demographics, middle-class citizens and teens.

That, or making clean air cost more dumps the non-smoker in the opposite category and leaves Smoking Companies' bottom dollar alone.

It's hardly a compromise when you realize who's being affected. Besides, what's best isn't to regulate with signs people wont see, it's to affect their life as drastically as possible so they take notice of the change and actually do something about it (like buy less smokes). A raise in taxes on any product non-needed to live is also good business, especially if it's something that can (or does) cause harm to the specific individual or otherwise. (I noticed you ignored my example of food. Fresh food costs more, takes more time/energy and, as a result, is consumed less.)

Offline Jude

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #66 on: July 29, 2011, 06:40:43 AM »
Quote
Risks upon yourself and unborn children, yes, but second hand smoke claims are still not founded.
I used to believe this too at one point in time.  I watched one too many episodes of Penn and Teller's:  Bullshit.  That was back during my libertarian kick; ahhh, those days.  Anyway, bit of research for you.  I'll start off by giving you a link to this part of my post you conveniently ignored despite the fact that it is in direct contradiction to what you said after it:
Quote
But there is evidence that second-hand smoking hurts others.  When they ban it inside bars and restaurants in a county, the number of service industry workers who show up at the hospital with smoking-related noticeably decreases in county hospitals.  There are numerous other pieces of evidence as well.  I can dig up the data if you like.
http://www.bmj.com/content/340/bmj.c2161

Next, here's some data on how second-hand smoke increases cancer risks:  http://ije.oxfordjournals.org/content/36/5/1048.long
http://ajph.aphapublications.org/cgi/content/abstract/97/3/545

The risk is estimated as an increase of between 20-30%.  I can dig up more information if you'd like, but you're simply factually wrong about that.  Second-hand smoke does harm other people.  Not in small quantities, but if you live with a smoker or you work around smokers for any significant period of time, your chances of developing a smoking-related illness are greatly elevated.

This means if you happen to be a family member of a smoker, a hospitality industry worker, etc, you're being exposed to dangerous behaviors which can cause you to die.  This isn't an issue of wanting to impose your will on other people, it's an issue of not wanting to share in other people's fate for their bad habit.

John Q McDonalds could eat seventy Big Macs next to you every day for a month and it will not cause you to gain even a pound of fat.  Smoking next to someone day in and day out in an enclosed environment could very well kill them.  That's the difference.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2011, 06:43:52 AM by Jude »

Offline DudelRok

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #67 on: August 01, 2011, 10:07:27 AM »
What part of the phrase circumstantial evidence didn't we catch? O.o

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumstantial_evidence
Quote
Circumstantial evidence is evidence in which an inference is required to connect it to a conclusion of fact. By contrast, direct evidence supports the truth of an assertion directly—i.e., without need for any additional evidence or the intervening inference.

And a meta-analysis is the easiest way to BS statistics as without all the variables from each individual study, you get only a vague individual interpretation based upon already wanted out comes. Be why it's used in things like marketing.

I know, damn well, what that second-hand smoke is doing to my body... just by being near it I can feel the burn and lung restriction but there isn't anything other than some padded numbers that say I'm speaking truth, or not.

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Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #68 on: August 01, 2011, 01:11:46 PM »
Just as a note, circumstantial evidence is considered just as reliable as direct evidence in a court of law.  If you go to bed and your lawn is green, but wake up in the morning and see your lawn covered with snow, that's circumstantial evidence that it snowed last night.  You didn't see it snowing - direct evidence - but you know that it snowed.  If you're inside a building with no windows, and people start coming in with umbrellas or wiping water off their glasses, that's circumstantial evidence that it's raining.  You don't have to see the water falling from the sky to draw that conclusion.  If you see tiny droplets of blood sprayed across a wall, that's circumstantial evidence that someone was shot there.  You didn't see the gunshot.

From that same Wikipedia article:

Quote
Forensic evidence supplied by an expert witness is usually circumstantial evidence. A forensic scientist who testifies that ballistics proves the defendant’s firearm killed the victim gives circumstantial evidence from which the defendant’s guilt may be inferred. (Note that an inference of guilt could be incorrect if the person who actually fired the weapon was somebody else.)

and:
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With obvious exceptions (immature, incompetent, or mentally ill individuals), most criminals try to avoid generating direct evidence. Hence the prosecution usually must resort to circumstantial evidence to prove the mens rea levels of "purposely" or "knowingly." The same goes for tortfeasors in tort law, if one needs to prove a high level of mens rea to obtain punitive damages.

and:
Quote
A popular misconception is that circumstantial evidence is less valid or less important than direct evidence. This is only partly true: direct evidence is popularly, but mistakenly, considered more powerful. Many successful criminal prosecutions rely largely or entirely on circumstantial evidence, and civil charges are frequently based on circumstantial or indirect evidence. Much of the evidence against convicted American bomber Timothy McVeigh was circumstantial, for example. Speaking about McVeigh's trial, University of Michigan law professor Robert Precht said, "Circumstantial evidence can be, and often is much more powerful than direct evidence". The 2005 murder trial of Scott Peterson was another high-profile conviction based heavily on circumstantial evidence.

So - what part of 'circumstantial evidence' did we leave out?

Offline Jude

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #69 on: August 02, 2011, 06:20:10 PM »
What you're saying is that my evidence does not necessitate a direct causative mechanism between the banning of smoking in bars and the drop in hospital rates.  You are making the argument "causation is not correlation."  Which is true, but the way you're arguing it shows a lack of knowledge of what that means or how to properly employ accusations of that fallacy in a debate.  Causation is not correlation is only half of the argument, because the first step in establishing causation is to show that there is correlation.

There is a perfectly plausible causative mechanism inherent in those statistics, which is then elaborated on with the rest of my links.  So your usage of post hoc ergo propter hoc falls flat, and in the context of the rest of your post is pure non-sequitor.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2011, 06:21:37 PM by Jude »

Offline DudelRok

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #70 on: August 04, 2011, 07:25:31 AM »
Okay, I suppose I can play it that way as well.

Since the restriction on cigarettes there has also been a decrease in the use of coal and other fossil fuels that cause the exact same thing, as well as asbestos and certain chemical used for cleaning.

http://www.lungusa.org/healthy-air/

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/asbestos

http://www.lung-tumors.info/lung-cancer-causes-poisons-under-your-sink-hidden-dangers-cleaning-products-scm62pg0ct7073aa.aspx

Food service workers, themselves, also have a much higher chance of being smokers.

http://www.nrn.com/article/study-foodservice-workers-smoke-more-others

Due to the recent economical stance, paying for something frivolous may not be in their best interests. In fact there is still being research done on how much the recent ban on cigarets has effected the state pocket.

http://www.smokersclubinc.com/economic.html

We can also take into the point that the age gap for food service is 16-19 coupled with youth smoking statistics, the average smoking level of college students (of which make up the majority of said food service) and you are left with some pretty hallow evidence either way.

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos162.htm

http://www.globalink.org/en/youth.shtml

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/114/4/1028.abstract

Or I could blame The Health Care Industry for jacking up prices and people from within the food service industry being where they are typically put health as a secondary factor to living.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_care_prices

This is, of course, ignoring the fact that smoking period has been on the decrease for years.. only reaching a stall in mid 07.

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6005a2.htm?s_cid=mm6005a2_w

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/11/08/AR2007110801094_2.html


tl;dr post hoc ergo propter hoc

Offline Iniquitous

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #71 on: August 04, 2011, 11:33:27 AM »


Right then, let me light up a smoke and then I’ll add my two cents.

Get off my effin back about my smoking.

Plain enough for everyone?

Yes, I know it is bad for me. Yes, I know it causes cancer and a whole host of other problems. Yes, I know the belief that it ‘relaxes or relieves stress’ is actually incorrect and in all actuality, it stresses the body out. Yes, I know that second hand smoke is a bad thing.

Now let me address this in the order stated above.

My body. Shut up about it. You don’t have the right to tell me I can or cannot have an abortion, what right do you have to tell me if I can smoke or not? (Or how I eat, whether I exercise, drink enough water, sleep enough or recycle).

Yes, it does cause all those things and more - but it doesn’t cause all those things and more in every single person who smokes. That needs to be understood. My dad smokes, has smoked longer than I have been alive - he has no health issues stemming from his smoking. My grandmother smoked for longer than both my dad and I - she has COPD. I have smoked for far longer than I should but I have no health issues from my smoking. Does this mean I think I will make it without ever developing any? No, just means that it is hit or miss and people need to stop saying every smoker will have these bad things happen to them.

Yes, it is all in the mind - lighting up that cigarette and taking the first draw on it actually puts stress on the body but for those of us who smoke, there is an undeniable release of tension. Part of that addiction yanno. And in all honesty, I’d rather not go through the whole withdrawal process again - yes, I’ve quit for over a year before - because guess what. I do not like people very much and I have to deal with people every day - smoking is my way of stopping myself from telling some inbred, ignorant as swipe what I think of him/her and thus allows me to keep my job.

‘Your rights end at the end of my nose.’ That works both ways buddy. I actually have no problem with smoking away from non smokers. Another inconvenience for me, but I do respect the rights of others and do take myself away from non smokers. However, for all you non smokers that think it is cute to deliberately go walking by the smoking pen a mile from the fucking entrance and then bitch cause you smell the smoke? Get a life. All these bitchers about second hand smoke and a good portion of you guys deliberately go out of your way to have your own rights ‘violated’ just so you can make faces, wave your hands and run your mouths.

Oh and… my apartment - I pay for it, not you. My car - I paid for it, not you. I am sick and tired of people demanding the government stick it’s nose into every little aspect of our lives. If you do not want me to smoke then you pay my bills, you take care of me - then I will quit. Till then? Shut up about it.

Concerning breaks at work. I wish I knew which companies allowed smoke breaks on top of paid breaks. I work split shifts - four hours in the morning and four hours in the evening. I get one paid 15 min break on each four hour shift. There is no ‘smoke break!’ between calls on top of my 15 mins. I have flat 15 minutes that I can break up however I want. When that time is up, I am S.O.L. till the end of my shift.  And this job I currently have is the first job that I have worked at that allowed it’s employees to break up their 15 mins however they wanted. Every other job I have worked had a schedule and you lived/worked by that schedule.

In the end, this is my stance on it. If you all start demanding that the government take more control/illegalize smoking/fast food/unhealthy lifestyles/etc then you have just invited the government to turn all of us into mindless slaves.

 “Every step we take towards making the State our Caretaker of our lives, by that much we move toward making the State our Master.” ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

Offline Jude

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #72 on: August 04, 2011, 06:51:56 PM »
I am getting a feeling you are not reading the research I put forth.  For example, the first bit you counter of mine with your claim that "Since the restriction on cigarettes there has also been a decrease in the use of coal and other fossil fuels that cause the exact same thing, as well as asbestos and certain chemical used for cleaning" simply isn't true.  They're measuring the effect of a smoking ban inside of bars and entertainment establishments in the short term in the studies I give -- not over long periods of time.  You are also assuming (and failing to substantiate) that the level of pollutants is actually going down in these areas; you've provided this as a possible alternative cause, but provided no data on whether or not what you're claiming as this alternative cause has actually occurred.  This is an ad hoc rationalization, not a well-formed counter argument.

As for the rest, I don't feel obliged to read your research and respond to it until you do me the courtesy of actually reading the solid, scientific evidence I threw up for consideration several posts ago.  I do not feel that you've reviewed the articles I gave at all; frankly I'm not even sure what your thesis is right now, so maybe we should refocus after you review the literature I've linked to so that we can have a more precise discussion that would be easier for the both of us to debate in a productive manner.

p.s. I don't think you're even reading the full content of your own links either when making your "asbestos reduction" point.
Quote
How does smoking affect risk?

Many studies have shown that the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure is particularly hazardous. Smokers who are also exposed to asbestos have a risk of developing lung cancer that is greater than the individual risks from asbestos and smoking added together (3, 6). There is evidence that quitting smoking will reduce the risk of lung cancer among asbestos-exposed workers (4). Smoking combined with asbestos exposure does not appear to increase the risk of mesothelioma (9). However, people who were exposed to asbestos on the job at any time during their life or who suspect they may have been exposed should not smoke.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2011, 02:30:37 AM by Jude »

Offline ColdBloodedJellyDoughnut

Re: Individual Choices Affect Community - Smoking Question
« Reply #73 on: August 21, 2011, 03:05:12 PM »
I've found reading this thread very curious, and all I really think I can do is add my two cents, not only as someone who has lived in New Zealand which has been projected as a country that could become smoke free in the next 20 years, but also the daughter of a respiratory nurse specialist.

Mum tells me a lot about smoking and its effects, as its something she sees on a daily basis. COPD, pulmonary fibroma... other diseases that I can't name right now because their names have fled my brain... When people count the cost of smoking, they tend to forget a whole host of respiratory diseases. Not only that, but the cost of the effects on eyesight, hearing, teeth, loss of muscle function, bone density and doctors are now finding links between dementia, alzheimers and smoking.

My mother was in hospital recently for her own medical issues and was in a general surgical ward. While there she overheard a group of women railing about their right to smoke. Here, we must consider the time taken up by these three women having to be taken down four floors and outside by an orderly or nurse each time they what to smoke. Then there's the fact that one of them had a horrendous cough which had to be investigated with x-rays, scans and consultants visits before their surgery, which was not directly smoking related.

The fact of the matter is, when it comes to smoking a lot of people tend to underestimate the cost. This is simply because their are so many related costs that cannot be directly costed or qualified. From my mother's family, my grandfather, grandmother, uncle and great aunt are dead as a direct result of smoking. My aunt has lung cancer and my great-aunt has COPD. My mother has heart issues as a result of passive smoking in the first half of her life. My paternal grandparents are both heavily affected by their smoking.

And mine is just one family and one example. The true evil of smoking is how much it affects the lives of those around, not only in the family, but in the wider community. And that's a cost that I don't think will ever be truly recorded.