Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Smoking is good for you

Smoking is good for you. It creates jobs on tobacco farms, in cigarette factories, and in advertising and retail. The illnesses it causes need treating in hospitals and this creates work for doctors and nurses, ancillary staff in the hospital, and the people who design and build hospitals. It makes work for the people who make anti-cancer treatments. It even makes work for road sweepers and others dealing with smoking litter, and of course the people who work in industries that make lighters, matches, ash trays etc. Paradoxically, it also benefits the people who work in the 'stop smoking' industry: Those who give advice and hypnosis counselling, those involved in the manufacture of nicotine patches and gum, and those pretend cigarettes that help you give up the real thing. it's all economic growth.

The government, realising the cost to businesses of progressively banning cigarettes, has postponed the enactment of the Tobacco Act passed by the outgoing Labour Government which would see further restriction. (This is not a party political statement - the same paradoxes apply in a monetary economy whoever runs it).

Lunacy. In a sane world, if people really wanted to smoke, provided they knew the risks, no-one would absolutely want to stop them, but if people didn't have to have jobs to get money to access the essentials of life, who would work in an industry that both wants you to smoke and wants you to stop smoking. In a sane world, where only work that has a social return is done, there would be less work to do, and less stress - and less smoking to palliate the stress. (Whilst tobacco can hardly be seen as one of life's essentials, and thus the nutrients to grow it would be prioritised to food, there would be no moral reason for preventing its use.)

In a world without money people wouldn't have to be bonded in slavery paying back loan with interest. No-one would need to sell anything, including tobacco, and therefore no-one would need to push anything through advertising. The only 'advertising' would simply give information about the product/service.

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