Fatso Reilly is really pissing me off.
He has become an obsessive tyrant who is using the smokers of Ireland in his personal petty vendetta against the tobacco industry.
He is now determined to bring in “plain packaging” despite the Australian experiment proving that the packaging has no effect whatsoever other than to cause major confusion for customers and retailers. He has announced a “study” that somehow proves that Ireland will be different and that the youth will be put off in vast numbers on the basis of a dodgy questionnaire which has been nicely demolished by Christopher Snowdon.
He produced a report the other day that lays out his plans for the “war on the tobacco industry”.
I have read the report and frankly I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. The bulk of it seems to propose measures which are already in place – the ban on packs smaller than twenty, the ban on advertising, the workplace ban and all the rest. The only new proposals that I can find are proposed bans in public parks and beaches, with a passing reference to smoking in cars. What he can’t seem to get into his thick head is that not one of the measures introduced to date has had the desired effect. The hospitality industry has been severely hammered and Ireland is now a world leader in tobacco smuggling but that is about the measure of it. The study claims that “3,726 smoking-related deaths were likely prevented.” which is the greatest load of bullshit ever. How do you measure a non-death? Do you go around asking people if they would be dead only for the smoking ban?
Reilly’s proposals for the near future are more massive price hikes and of course the “plain packs”. The smugglers must be rubbing their hands in glee at the prospect. What he cannot seem to grasp is that smokers may not wish to quit. They love telling us that 90% or whatever smokers wish they could quit but I would love to know how they come by that figure. He cannot seem to grasp that people have a natural aversion to being bullied. While I might have idly considered quitting in the past, those days are gone. To quit now would be a victory for the Bully State in my books.
The greatest laugh though has to be Reilly’s statement that “any plans by tobacco companies to sell plain permanent boxes so smokers can transfer cigarettes in to them would be tackled.” Who the hell does he think he is? Will it be all right for other companies to produce boxes? Will cigarette cases be banned? Will my leather tobacco pouch become an illegal possession? The man is deluded, deranged, obsessive and a petty tyrant.
And because he is in a position of power he is also extremely dangerous.