You will do as you are told

This morning I was pointed in the direction of a letter in the Irish Times.

Tobacco is not a normal product

Now to get the context of the letter I had to follow the trail back a bit to find another letter.

Legislation to force us to be healthier?

Now the blood was beginning to simmer a bit at this stage but I persisted in my quest for the original article.

I found it.

Are most of us living lives of quiet desperation?

On the very first paragraph, my blood finally reached boiling point.

Irish people are not making the lifestyle changes needed to promote and improve their health. Despite repeated information campaigns on quitting smoking, drinking less alcohol, eating healthily, and being more active, no one appears to be listening to, or acting on, the advice from health experts.

No one appears to be listening to, or acting on, the advice from health experts?  So fucking what?  The implication here is that the “experts” know far more than us and we should really kowtow to their every dictat.  We are naughty schoolchildren and we must obey our elders and betters.  There is only one expert in this field that I will pay any attention to, and that is Doc, who knows me personally.  All the others can go fuck themselves as in general they are professional naggers with their own little agendas, none of which concerns me personally.

Only 13 per cent of respondents reported positive mental health meaning they “felt full of life”, “calm and peaceful,” “had lots of energy” and “been a happy person” in the four weeks before the survey took place.

Now I would see this as a core point in the whole debate.  Positive mental health is far more important than positive physical health.  Which would you rather be: unhealthy but happy, or healthy and miserable?  But our author then proceeds to argue that poor mental health is somehow related to poor physical health, thereby proposing a ridiculous hypothesis that improving physical health makes us happy.  This is utter bilge.  Has the author considered the simple idea that constant nagging, “denormalising” and penalising is making a large sector of the community unhappy?

The most interesting finding was that so few people changed their health behaviour since the 2015 survey. Almost half of smokers would like to stop and 40 per cent of respondents would like to be more physically active. Many would like to lose weight and eat healthily but cannot afford it.

That isn’t interesting at all.  The author is confusing vague aspiration with intent which is the norm within the walls of the Nanny State.  However these figures are regularly trotted out as an excuse to “help” all those people achieve a vague aspiration.  I would maybe like to do something is worlds away from I really must do something.

Unfortunately, information campaigns and television programmes have little influence on health behaviour. Campaigns can increase knowledge but actions rarely follow. Health information relayed by experts competes against a barrage of “real life” experiences that promote a different message. Scare tactics do not work either.

And they are surprised?  Has it never occurred to them that we are individuals and adults and can make up our own minds?  Scare tactics don’t work because we have long since seen through their Boogie Men for the advertising slogans that they really are.

Telling people they will develop chronic diseases at some point in the future if they do not stop smoking, binge drinking or whatever, is largely unsuccessful.

Because people not only see the fallacy of that with their own eyes but are willing to take any risk, real or imaginary, simply because that’s the nature of the beast.  People know that a lot of sports are dangerous but does that stop them participating?  If people enjoy doing something they will do it.  But then enjoyment isn’t in Public Health’s vernacular.

Like it or not more legislation is needed. We must be forced to change if we are not prepared to do so voluntarily.

Sieg Heil!

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You will do as you are told — 10 Comments

  1. Note the sudden appearance of the word “WE” in the last sentence. It is a trick that the Zealots employ constantly. The correct word is “THEY”, since we can reasonably assume that the writer is already smoke-free, alcohol-free and skinny.

    “THEY must be forced to change if THEY are not prepared to do so voluntarily.” 

    • I presume that is to give the impression that they are going to suffer with us and to make us feel like we are all one big happy family! 
      They can fuck off!

  2. I did find this slightly amusing:

    >Telling people they will develop chronic diseases at some point in the future <snip>, is largely unsuccessful.

    Simply put, the vast majority of people couldn’t give a flying rats ass as long as they are happy in themselves.

    Maybe if these puritans descended out of their ivory towers every once in a while they might see that us Proles are getting along just fine without their “interventions”; but then, they wouldn’t do that would they? Can’t come into contact with the Great Unwashed.

    Hail Hydra

  3. More propaganda used to intimidate, coerce, and provide self-justification for persecuting others. Tobacco control must be destroyed. 

  4. This is an ongoing fascist trend smoking,drinking and next free access via the internet.Or am I qualifying for a tin foil hat ?.

  5. “It’s not just Tobacco Control these days – it’s the whole Health Control Industry.”

    Indeed, but it is/was Tobacco Control which provided the first and most fundamental building-block for all the other attacks.  It’s the springboard from which all the others launch themselves.  One of the cleverest lies which was pumped out (and enthusiastically believed) in the first instance was that “this would only apply to smokers” because “tobacco is a uniquely dangerous product,” thus lulling the masses into a false sense of security that their own little vices – a few drinks of an evening, the odd chocolate bar, a piece of cake in their coffee break, a fast-food lunch every couple of days or so, a smattering of salt on their dinner – would be safe, because these harsh rulings would “only apply to smokers.”  And unfortunately, having fallen for this ruse, and thus passively accepted the principle that it was OK for the State to make intrusive rules and regulations whenever they deemed it necessary, it’s now virtually impossible for anyone who enjoys any of these other “unhealthy” activities to argue meaningfully against similar restrictions without being brushed aside as mere hypocrites: “Of course, you would say that, though, wouldn’t you? You’re a [drinker/fast-food lover/sugar addict] etc.” Just, in fact, like they said to any smokers who dared to argue against them in the early days of the anti-smoking movement in order to block their input into any debate.  And all the while, those who don’t enjoy the currently-targeted “sins” will sit back smugly, nodding frantically in agreement, safe in the knowledge that their personal indulgences aren’t in the firing line, and steadfastly believing the promises of the “experts” that they never will be (until they are, that is)

    Many of the enjoyers of the new tobacco-style health “threats” point to the passive smoking angle as if it’s a failsafe defence for them.  “There’s no such thing as Passive Drinking,” they cry; or “There’s no such thing as Passive Eating.”  But they’re naïve and they’re wrong.  There was, after all, no such thing as Passive Smoking until the anti-smoking groups stumbled across the concept (and we all know where they found that, now, don’t we, boys and girls?) and ramped it up to hysteria levels through an extraordinarily energetic programme of faux “research,” skewed studies and cherry-picked meta-analyses designed precisely to persuade gullible politicians that “the science was settled” and that they – the politicians, that is – had a moral obligation to “do something” about it. 

    Do drinkers honestly believe that the links between crime, social disorder, town-centre rowdiness, and vehicle accidents won’t be made much of by the anti-booze brigade?  “No such thing as Passive Drinking.”  Wow!  They really are handing themselves to the anti-booze brigade on a plate with that one!  Just add a question mark at the end, a backdrop of a rather nasty pile-up, ambulances and a covered up body on the road, preferably with a cute teddy bear lying forlornly beside it, the word “Really?” at the bottom, and in and of itself that phrase is tailor-made for a poster campaign proving that, actually yes, there absolutely is such a thing. 

    Of course, we smokers will recognise it exactly for what it is – a shameless manipulation of people’s strong emotional reactions to tragedies like road accidents and a blatant attempt to direct that emotional reaction towards the “bad person” who they can blame for causing it. But drinkers, not having been there, seen the movie and bought the t-shirt etc, simply won’t see it for the “first step” toward the demonisation of alcohol that it truly is, poor fools.  They’ll just think that it’s a one-off campaign against drinking and driving, tell themselves that it doesn’t apply to them (because, of course, they’re “responsible” drinkers, aren’t they?), and keep on bleating that “at least we don’t smoke …” without realising for a second that it’s precisely because they insist on adhering, like limpets to a rock, to the same old anti-smoking mantra that they are making themselves vulnerable to exactly the same treatment.  Idiots.

    To bring any huge edifice down, you have first to destroy the foundations. And, when it comes to Health Control, that is anti-smoking. If that doesn’t go, neither does anything else.

    • Completely agree. The basis of it all is SHS and they (great and the good) know it well. Every time the subject of the ban is brought up they run for cover firing the Parthian shot of  ” its a success” as they dive in the nearest trench.

      I’ve said for years that SHS is the root of all this and should be the main target.

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