Latest Victory for Health Nazis heartens Totalitarians
Are anti-smoking advocates Health Nazis?
Grumbles that the tactics of anti-smoking zealots smack of totalitarianism, would be based solid historical evidence.
Come next week in California, it will be illegal to smoke in your car under certain conditions.
California's new "Smoke-Free Cars with Minors" law takes effect on January 1, giving California the most comprehensive smoke-free car law in the nation, and providing smokers another reason to make a successful New Year's Resolution to kick the habit.
The California legislature passed the law in response to compelling scientific evidence that smoking in cars exposes passengers, especially children, to high levels of toxic secondhand smoke. The law prohibits smoking in a motor vehicle (stationary or moving) in which a youth under the age of 18 is present. A violation is punishable by a fine of up to $100 and categorized as a secondary offense, meaning an officer may not pull over a vehicle for the sole purpose of checking if someone is smoking with a minor present.
Anyone who is familiar with the "secondary offense" legislative tactic knows how that works.
Legislators, nervous about how folks back home might take losing another everyday freedom, vote for intrusive legislation, but make it a secondary offense; i.e., a person can not be stopped solely for that crime. They have to be doing something else wrong, like speeding, first.
Of course, as residents in several "wear your seat belts" states know, either the secondary offense part is soon upgraded, either legislatively or in law enforcement practice.
In West Virginia, where not wearing a seat belt is a secondary offense, springtime "Click it or Ticket" traffic stop campaigns have been a staple for several years. Law enforcement set up roadblocks and issue tickets for anyone not wearing a seatbelt.
Motorists have to stop for the roadblocks/traffic stops, therefore, strictly speaking, drivers weren't stopped for not wearing a seat belt. The fact that the traffic stops were set up to check on seat belt usage doesn't seem to matter.
In other states, after a few years, the shock of making a personal preference a crime tends to wear off and some legislators then feel it's alright to vote to make the violation a primary offense.
Their justification: people are used to it.
Back to the original Smoke Nazis.
Almost 70 years ago, another society laid out the blueprint unelected Health officials are following today in America and elsewhere.
In 1939, the Reich Health Führer, established the "Bureau Against the Dangers of Alcohol and Tobacco". In 1942 an "Institute for the Struggle against the dangers of Tobacco" was established at the University of Jena, under the directorship of Professor Karl Astel.
Originating from this institute in 1943 was the first formal case-control study of smoking and lung cancer, a convincing investigation in which Schairer and Schuniger showed a sophisticated understanding of the potential biases which could distort the findings. They included both population and clinical control series and examined whether changes in smoking pattern consequent upon illness could lead to artifictious results. It can now be calculated that the dose- response association between smoking and lung cancer risk in their study is significant at the p<= 0.0000001 level. The institute from which this study came was supported by 100,000 Reichmarks of Adolf Hitler's personal finances.
Although California's legislature passed the latest anti-smoking rules, in many cases, rules are dictated by County, City or Metro Health Departments--by unelected officials who do not have to face voters.
In Ohio, anti-smoking enthusiasts are seeking to double the penalty of an adult caught smoking in a bar to $1,000. Again, voters have no recourse when such draconian rules go into effect.
As with any nanny state diktat, the rules are "good for you".
According to the 2006 Surgeon General's Report, there is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke. Peak levels of secondhand smoke from smoking in a car can be up to 10 times greater than the level which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers hazardous, according to a study recently published by a team of environmental scientists from Stanford University.
"Passengers, especially youth, are exposed to dangerous levels of toxic air contaminants when someone is smoking in a car," said Paul Knepprath, vice president, government relations for the American Lung Association of California. "Fortunately California leads the world in creating healthier, smoke-free environments for its citizens and we are pleased that California youth will benefit from this vital new health protection."
A quick look at the facts surrounding smoking, death rates and the effectiveness of Smoke Nazi leglislation.
* Death rates for all cancer sites combined decreased 1.6 percent per year between 1993 and 2003 in males, and by 0.8 percent in females between 1992 and 2003.
* Lung cancer incidence rates are declining in men and appear to be plateauing in women after increasing for many decades.
* Among males age 40 and under, leukemia is the most common fatal cancer, while cancer of the lung and bronchus predominates in men 40 and over.
If the Smoke Nazis are right, shouldn't the death rate from lung cancer at least be holding steady? After all, one smoker per household was "poisoning" entire families. We ought to be dropping like flies!
And yet there isn't one major study--not ONE--that shows people who never smoked but grew up with smokers have a clearly higher rate of lung cancer than the children of non-smokers. Why not?
Instead, the death rate from lung cancer for women tracks the rise in smoking among women. Liberated women smoked more in the '60s and '70s, and today they are dying of lung cancer. Their moms--who sat next to dad, inhaling the smoke from his evil cigarette for 40 years--died of something else.
In case Californians aren't totally convinced that the new law isn't good for them, other benefits are extolled.
Health advocates believe that the new law will result in fewer cigarettes being smoked in cars and fewer cigarette butts being tossed. If so, cigarette litter will be reduced and the risk of wildfires diminished.
The original Nazis knew a thing or two about what was good for you--at least if you were a Aryan in good standing.
Tobacco had long been considered a potential "genetic poison" by the Racial Hygiene movement in Germany, clearly the high level of concern regarding the health effects of smoking was strongly connected to the goal of general improvement of the Arian "race".
As was the tactic of extolling "other benefits."
The 1938 annual report of the Public Health Service (Offentliche Gesundheltsdiesnt) considered that "the nervous disorders of every sort which are being reported in increasing numbers from nearly every part of Germany are for the larger part due to excessive indulgence in tobacco and alcohol"
The progress of anti-smoking forces so far has been impressive, especially when it is considered that it has been largely achieved by non-elected health officials, in many cases.
Smoking in public buildings were first outlawed.
Then, bans on private restaurants and other eating establishments were enacted. It made no matter that in commercial buildings, customers could exercise their right not to patronize smoking businesses.
The laws of not smoking trumped the laws of supply and demand and freedom of choice.
Bar, bowling alleys and other traditional havens of smokers followed, with race tracks and gambling establishments soon after.
California's new law now makes smoking in a private vehicle an offense against the state.
Can smoking in the privacy of one's dwelling be far behind?
There has already been movements to ban smoking in private apartments in some areas of the U.S.
Those who aren't alarmed by this trend had best be warned: check your weight. Fatty foods and high-sugar foods are next on the Health Nazi agenda.
Non-smokers who laugh need only check their history books.
The present-day Health Nazis had excellent teachers.
[image: thenaturaltruth; joshua bowe]
* Smoke-Free Cars: New Law Takes Effect January 1 2008
* The Original Anti-Smoking Nazis
* Smoke Nazis Wrong Again
Death by 1000 Papercuts Front Page.