Skip to main content

It's January in America.  You know what that means.  The busybodies are back!!!!  State legislatures across America are reconvening and dreaming up amazing new ways to hijack the personal freedoms of those whose freedoms they swore to uphold.  One can almost imagine lawmakers breathlessly scurrying around the floors of their respective state Capitols to the sounds of Eduard Strauss' "Bahn Frei Polka" doing everything they can to regulate more people's lives as quickly as possible.  And lest anyone think there is a line of invasiveness that our elected officials dare not cross at the risk of triggering a backlash, new legislation emerges that lays waste to that premise.  Several states are currently debating expanding smoking bans to the automobile in 2008, but the otherwise pro-tobacco state of South Carolina appears to be among the closest to creating a whole new reason for law enforcement officers to be too distracted to go after actual criminals.  http://biz.yahoo.com/...

Working in state government, I'm getting a first-hand vantage point of the mountains of legislation proposed to keep the peasantry in its place in the name of the "common good", or even more frequently and disingenuously, "for the children" as is the prevailing talking point for this specific legislation.  California has already led the way, as it usually does, in sacrificing liberty for security, with enforcement for the automobile smoking ban set to take effect on July 1 I believe.  Some counties in West Virginia are already enforcing a localized ban.

As always, there will be energetic defenders of this latest self-righteous assault on the rights on smokers, a favorite target of the very people who most depend on tobacco revenues to finance the growth of government.  On the surface, it's not easy to defend parents who smoke in front of their kids, but at least for me, it's much harder justifying public dollars and the resources of law enforcement to advance the deeply troubling trend of criminalizing bad habits.  Most sadly, Democrats are the overwhelming supporters of turning their own working class base (those disproportionately most likely to smoke and partake in other "bad habits") into criminals.

First of all, I don't accept the magnitude of the threat level regarding "secondhand smoke", just as I don't accept it when it comes the forced prohibition of smoking in privately owned restaurants and bars.  While one is certainly better off not being in such an atmosphere, most of us here are old enough to be of the generation where we wallowed in the stench of our parents', friends', and relatives' secondhand cigarette smoke with far greater frequency than nearly anyone is today.  And the consequence of this exposure is a generation of Americans living longer lives than any previous generation, so long in fact that we're being warned of the pending bankruptcy of retirement entitlements brought on by the rapidly aging population.  Is this "epidemic of secondhand smoke" really worthy of perennial revisiting and perpetually creeping invasiveness?

Even for those convinced that secondhand smoke is as deadly as paid antismoking ideologues tell us it is, isn't there a convincing case to be made that law enforcement resources be directed elsewhere?  If parents smoking in their car with their own children is going to be within the state's domain to regulate, will we next accept "the smoking patrol" busting down front doors with battering rams and extracting the children of "suspected smokers"?  Is no personal liberty sacred in the name of carrying insurance industry water by way of "endorsing healthy lifestyles", literally through the barrel of law enforcement's gun?

As the title of this diary suggested, I couldn't help but remember President Clinton's insistence on the need to hire 100,000 new police officers back in 1993, presumably to control crime.  From what I've seen, however, the addition of these new police officers to the government payroll has all too often become an exercise of government existing to finance itself and stealing our freedom and privacy in the process.  When we hired 100,000 new police officers (or whatever the total number ended up being), were supposed to foresee that in 15 years, all these police officers would have nothing better to do than pulling over cigarette-smoking soccer moms?  If so, we were sold a very costly bill of goods with seemingly endless repercussions.

With all due respect to our blue-uniformed civil servants in South Carolina, California, and all across the country, if all you have to is finance your department with tickets raised by people smoking cigarettes in their car, we need 100,000 FEWER police on America's streets.

Originally posted to Mark27 on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 05:52 PM PST.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Try as I might, I just can't work up a tear (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    akeitz, LakeSuperior, haruki, nchristine

    for addicts who kill their fellow human beings with carcinogenic smoke.

    Must be the damage to my eyes from all those years of having to put up with second-hand smoke.

    "So long as men die, Liberty will never perish." -- Charlie Chaplin, The Great Dictator

    by khereva on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 05:57:31 PM PST

    •  Spoken Exactly Like Someone.... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Luetta, kraant, palantir

      ....poised to become exasperated when the nanny-state wolf comes knocking on their door, insisting that they're extending their tentacles into your home (or car for that matter) for your own protection.

      •   Bush has the right to call you, me (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        akeitz, theran, kraant, khereva

        anybody an enemy combatant and have us locked up with absolutely no recourse...warrantless surveillance since before 9-11...and you are worried about the "nanny state tentacles" reaching and snatching our freedoms over smoking.

        Honey, state tentacles can already reach into our lives (the medical records riffling allowed by the so-called Patriot Act)and there is not even any "nanny" quality to soften it.

        And you are worried about this.

        Holy hell.

        Kucinich did NOT bankrupt Cleveland.

        by zett on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 06:13:13 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Honey? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kraant

          Whatever merit your argument may have had was squandered with such a ham-handed attempt to demean the other party who you are debating.

          Obviously, the scope of the state in regards to warrantless surveillance and suspension of habeus corpus are much more serious than the nanny state tentacles of smoking bans....but the latter will affect far more people in sheer numbers than the theft of freedom advanced in the name of a "war on terrorism".

          One can have two concerns in their mind at the same time, zett.  I fear the police state measures done in the name of "protecting us from the others" AND I fear the police state measures done in the name of "protecting us from ourselves".  I would hope others around here are capable of being troubled by more than one means of government hijacking our freedoms as well.

          •  I did not mean to demean you (0+ / 0-)

            I am from WV and we are just Southern enough that we frequently call people honey. We (and other people from other parts) also use honey instead of "Listen..."

            I don't buy the "it affects more people" argument. It is not the number of people it effects that matters, it is the level of power and control it gives.  It is the seriousness of the end result that counts more to my mind.  If the government has the right to spy and torture, more people die.  People lose their freedom, their very status as humans and cannot get a semblance of it back. But if the government tells people where they can and cannot smoke, their basic humanity is not deeply violated.  They are not going to die in a dungeon with no one to hear their screams. They are inconvenienced.

            Kucinich did NOT bankrupt Cleveland.

            by zett on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 06:41:20 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I Accept That Your Fears of the Police State.... (0+ / 0-)

              ....are more serious and potentially more people.  Can you accept my position that we have the right to be disgusted with, and indeed fear, the erosion of more seemingly benign liberties regarding personal lifestyle at the hands of invasive state powers?  

              •  I can accept it. Agree to disagree? n/t (0+ / 0-)

                Kucinich did NOT bankrupt Cleveland.

                by zett on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 06:45:37 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Can you accept that your "right" (0+ / 0-)

                to kill me with your addiction is not getting any sympathy?

                "So long as men die, Liberty will never perish." -- Charlie Chaplin, The Great Dictator

                by khereva on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 09:33:18 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Naturally You Assume I Smoke.... (0+ / 0-)

                  ....which makes it easier for you to frame a property rights and personal liberties issue within the context of "us versus them"....all due to your petulant perceived entitlement to fresh air on demand.  It's people like you who make it so easy for the overreaching hand of government to strangle us.

                  •  "perceived entitlement to fresh air" (0+ / 0-)

                    Just priceless.

                    I'M being outrageous, simply by demanding that you not poison me?

                    Of course I deduce that you smoke. Your thoughtlessness made it highly likely, and your response now even more so.

                    "So long as men die, Liberty will never perish." -- Charlie Chaplin, The Great Dictator

                    by khereva on Tue Jan 29, 2008 at 12:29:42 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  You're Definitely Being Outrageous.... (0+ / 0-)

                      ....demanding that air be fresh for you on other people's property.  If I didn't particularly care for what you had for dinner last night, khereva, and got the government to ban you from making it again, you'd be offended, right?  Just think how businesses and their customers dealing with state-mandated smoking bans feel.

                      And by the way, you're wrong.  I'm a nonsmoker.  Imagine that....someone concerned about the rights of others who doesn't have a direct self-interest.  What a concept, huh, big guy?! ;)

                      •  No, I'm not. (0+ / 0-)

                        You're also not allowed to commit other crimes against people, even if it's "on your property." You're not allowed to rob them, rape them, defraud them, or any number of other things. Murdering them with your addiction (and regardless of your protestations, you've certainly taken ownership of this one) is yet another thing you don't get to do.

                        You may not happen to light cigarettes yourself-- but you're a smoker, through and through.

                        "So long as men die, Liberty will never perish." -- Charlie Chaplin, The Great Dictator

                        by khereva on Tue Jan 29, 2008 at 05:44:09 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You're Forgetting One Important Factor.... (0+ / 0-)

                          ....in your attempt to parallel rape with smoking....is that cigarettes are LEGAL....and will continue to be as long as the government becomes more dependent on tobacco revenues with each passing day.  So instead of banging your spoon against your high chair about being murdered by secondhand smoke that you are never exposed to, and just be happy that these horrible smokers are paying all your taxes for you.

      •  No. Someone who's lived with junkies. (0+ / 0-)

        And has heard every rationalization under the sun for why their addiction is harmless, and why the cure is worse than the disease.

        Peddle those threats elsewhere. They don't work here.

        "So long as men die, Liberty will never perish." -- Charlie Chaplin, The Great Dictator

        by khereva on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 09:34:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  You pay the hospital bill for asthmatics? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LakeSuperior, haruki

    You seem to have issues with tobacco eh?  Your right to smoke end with my right to not cough and wheeze....

    •  "Your Right to ___ Ends With My Right to __" (0+ / 0-)

      The end result of that worldview is nobody has any rights to do anything.  There has to be a balance between one person's liberty and another's security, or we all live in a fascist state.

      •  Boo hoo hoo give up your cigarettes dude (0+ / 0-)

        Don't pull that selective libertarian crap on me. Do you know how expensive it is to care for asthmatic children? Do you know how many undertreated asthmatic children die each year?

        •  Not a Smoker....Dude (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          luckylizard

          The "smoking-related health care costs" meme doesn't stick either....for a number of reasons...but primarily because of the fact that government would go broke if it wasn't for the taxes paid by these smokers you wish the state to persecute.

          •  Actually I think they did a study... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            fly, Mark27, luckylizard

            ... in the Czech republic IIRC that showed that as far as health care costs go, smokers are less costly than non-smokers because they tended to die more suddenly (heart attacks) and died younger so didn't, uh, "linger" in the twilight years requiring expensive around the clock nursing.

            If true, the health care costs argument is a canard.

            •  You're Correct.... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kraant

              ...if not necessarily politically correct, by invoking that Czech study.  The flimsy arguments regarding direct costs related to smoking being bankrupting government become even more irrational and hypocritical when you figure that smokers probably run up LOWER lifetime health care costs than nonsmokers due to their reduced life expectancy....all the while paying massively higher taxes for health care services disproportionately directed towards NONSMOKERS.

        •  Speaking of Asthmatic Children... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          djpat, Mark27

          Although diesel emits less CO2 than petroleum, it emits more nitrous oxide and particulate matter, contributing to smog, global climate change, and health problems like asthma, heart disease, and cancer.(1) The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is playing a key role in raising awareness and promoting action to reduce the harmful effects of diesel. An NRDC report issued in 2001 concluded that children who ride diesel-powered buses to school every day have an increased risk of cancer from diesel exhaust. (cite)

          The busy ports at Long Beach and Los Angeles, California, taken together, emit more pollution that the region’s top 300 emitting industrial plants and refineries.(2) A 2003 study in Oakland, California, revealed that diesel emission levels in the community near the port were 90 times higher per square mile than in the rest of the state.(7) Most major U.S. ports, including Los Angeles, Oakland, Long Beach, New York, New Jersey, and Houston, violate federal safety standards for ozone and particulate matter.(2) Despite all this evidence, U.S. seaports lack the environmental regulations imposed on almost every other major industry. (ibid)

          also see:

          1. 2/25/04 Long Beach Press-Telegram: Gasping for Air: Pollution, Asthma Can Be Tragic Combination
          1. 2/23/04 Miami Herald: Child Asthma Rises in Los Angeles Area with Growing Exhaust Pollution

          Studies have shown that there is a strong link between diesel pollution and respiratory problems, says Swati Prakash, program director with the Pacific Institute. An Oakland-based nonprofit. "There is also no question that diesel pollution causes cancer. In fact, the state estimates that 70 percent of cancer risk from air pollution is from diesel." (cite)

          According to the California Air Resources Board, freight transport each year causes around 2,400 people to die prematurely; 2,380 people to be admitted to the hospital; 360,000 missed workdays and 1,100,000 missed days of school, the study reports.(ibid)

          The study in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives suggests that fine particulates found in diesel exhaust lead to immune system alterations that can cause asthma in otherwise healthy people. (cite)

          According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of individuals with asthma increased by 42 percent in the United States during the last decade. If rates continue unchecked, a child born a generation from now will be twice as likely to develop asthma as a child born today. (ibid)

          Who wants to argue that a 42% increase in ashma in the last decade is the result of the decrease in tobacco use over the same period?

          "...Bueller? ...Bueller?"

          Who wants to argue that the increase in asthma is the result of increased transporation-related pollution from increased imports over the same period?

          The NRDC, California Air Resource Board, Cities of Long Beach, Los Angeles, Oakland and San Diego, as well as anyone with an eye and a lung who's been to an elementary school near HWY 110.

          Which cause of asthma do you suppose is going to get regulated? Which one are we going to spend money on? Why do you suppose that is?

          The Atlantic Monthly online is now subscription-free... including archives!

          by opendna on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 07:44:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Your right to buy Chinese products (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mark27

      ends with the right of tens of thousands of children in Los Angeles to not develop asthma.

      There are hundreds of thousands people who breath toxic diesel exhaust so you can buy imports. Do we have laws attempting to reduce this hazard? None to speak of. But why should we? The victims are predominantly poor and non-white, but it's wealthy white liberals who hate tobacco smoke so we spend more money on anti-tobacco efforts.

      The Atlantic Monthly online is now subscription-free... including archives!

      by opendna on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 07:03:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Excellent Analogy.... (0+ / 0-)

        ....hundreds of millions of people in the world are suffering from real air pollution problems but Americans believe casual exposure to secondhand smoke is the inevitable cause of their demise.

  •  Y'know, you have a point! (5+ / 0-)

    I don't accept...the forced prohibition of smoking in privately owned restaurants and bars.  

    After all, it's the restaurant or bar owner's property, & s/he should be able to allow or prohibit anything s/he cares to within its confines, right?

    But why stop there? Why should that owner have to serve black folk, or Latinos, or Jews, or Democrats? Hell, it's his property, ain't it? For that matter, why should s/he have to keep the kitchen squeaky clean? Shouldn't s/he be able to serve whatever s/he wants? After all, if people get sick, they can always sue--& try to prove it was what they ate there that was the cause. I mean, even if someone comes in & finds salmonella there 3 days later, that doesn't prove there was any in that particular shrimp cocktail--& anyhow, folks who let someone else make food for them to eat have no one to blame but themselves if they haven't taken precautions to make sure it won't give 'em something...

    ::snarcasm ends::

    Just FTR, there's a little concept known as public accommodations you oughta read up on, nitwit.

    May I bow to Necessity not/ To her hirelings (W. S. Merwin)

    by Uncle Cosmo on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 06:16:45 PM PST

    •  When Your Critics Are Reduced to Playing the.... (0+ / 0-)

      ....race card as it applies to SMOKING BANS in bars, you know they have a terminally weak hand to play.  Most hilarious is that you're advocating on behalf of forbidding smokers from being in bars, yet have the gall to parallel my willingness NOT to discriminate against smokers as tantamount to refusing to serve Jews!  Seriously, Uncle Cosmo!  Is that all you got?

      Considering the more direct "second-hand" consequences of consuming alcohol in bars than some hypothetical increase in the risk of asthma generated by SHS exposure, it's kind of hard to stand in support of banning one and not the other....at least if you have any interest in consistency rather than mere selective self-serving sanctimony.

  •  I gotta consume the byproducts of your habit, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    unterhausen

    you gotta consume mine. I drink beer.

    Be bold, and mighty forces will come to your aid.
    --Basil King, Canadian novelist, 1859-1928

    by dallasdave on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 06:18:57 PM PST

    •  I Don't Get It.... (0+ / 0-)

      First of all, my bad habit is Pepsi, which I'm sure will be the next thing the nanny state has to save me from....by enriching themselves with new taxes, surchages, and criminal penalties for selected consumption.  

      But what is your point of me consuming your beer?  Society at large already deals with consuming "your bad habit" every time it impairs your judgment.

  •  Wanna pay for my asthma medications?? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    opendna

    "First of all, I don't accept the magnitude of the threat level regarding "secondhand smoke", just as I don't accept it when it comes the forced prohibition of smoking in privately owned restaurants and bars.  While one is certainly better off not being in such an atmosphere, most of us here are old enough to be of the generation where we wallowed in the stench of our parents', friends', and relatives' secondhand cigarette smoke with far greater frequency than nearly anyone is today.  And the consequence of this exposure is a generation of Americans living longer lives than any previous generation, so long in fact that we're being warned of the pending bankruptcy of retirement entitlements brought on by the rapidly aging population.  Is this "epidemic of secondhand smoke" really worthy of perennial revisiting and perpetually creeping invasiveness?"

    Wanna pay for my asthma medications??  They cost around $125 a month, after insurance.  Just being around a person that is a smoker (and not smoking at that minute) will cause me to have an asthma attack.  Do you know what it is to feel like someone is sitting on your chest and trying to strangle your throat from the inside??  Let me tell ya, it ain't fun.  I have three known triggers, cats, poinsettia and tobacco smoke.  My asthma triggered by smoke is a direct result of my father's smoking habit that lasted for more than 35 years.  He has stopped.

    Second hand smoke does cause medical issues in many people.  Thankfully there's medications that will help me live a longer healthier life than in the past.

    I do agree that a person has every right to smoke within the privacy of their own property.  Just don't expect me to acquiesce by walking through their door, or allowing them to cross mine.  They are not welcome to smoke on my property, period.  Bars and restaurants can have their smoking rights, just don't expect me to ever cross their threshold. I refuse to do so and that means that many of my friends don't either when we decide to go out.

    Uncle Cosmo has a very valid point as well.

    •  Since You're Cordial in Your Response.... (0+ / 0-)

      ....I'll try to tread lightly.  Your suggestion that you shouldn't be expected to cross the threshold of a bar or restaurant where smoking is permitted is perfectly reasonable....and can be accommodated without mandated bans by Big Brother for the supermajority of bar patrons who prefer to smoke while they drink at a privately owned bar where the owner permits it.  Your concerns can be acquiesced without the bootheel of the state hijacking property rights.

      And I still fail to see what was so good about Uncle Cosmo's point.  Because I believe that bar owners should be able to meet customers' demand to allow consumption of a legal product on property they own, that's a slippery slope to forbidding blacks and Jews in bars??!  C'mon!

      •  An analogy to not allowing blacks, asian, etc in (0+ / 0-)

        a privately owned establishment would be a pharmacists right to refuse to dispense drugs that they feel is counter to their beliefs.

        These drugs are perfectly legal and were lawfully prescribed, yet pharmacists in many states are allowed to 'opt' out of doing their job of dispensing the drug.  If a pharmacist is allowed to discriminate according to belief, why can't a bar owner??

        •  I'm Not The One Suggesting Bar Owners.... (0+ / 0-)

          ....should be allowed to discriminate.  You are.  Or at least Uncle Cosmo is and you're agreeing with him.  That's the irony of having the race card invoked as a counterargument for allowing smoking in bars.

        •  Why sell a product that can't be used legally? (0+ / 0-)

          If you can't smoke inside, or outside, or in your car, or on the sidewalk, or in a bar, or outside a bar, or at work, or outside work, or in a park, or...

          Why do we allow the product to be sold at all? It's like selling birth control over the counter but making it illegal to consume, unless it's a full moon on a date that's a multiple of three.

          Whatever other arguments Mark27's made, he's right that ticketing people for smoking in their cars is an absurd use of police manpower and public resources.

          The Atlantic Monthly online is now subscription-free... including archives!

          by opendna on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 07:51:55 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I agree with you that it is a waste.... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            opendna

            But to try to answer Mark27.  You are advocating property rights as well.  I agree with you, for the most part.

            You are advocating the right of a property owner to allow smoking within their property.  It is their right to believe that smoking is just fine.  This is a form of discrimination against those that do not smoke (for whatever reason).  Why is this form allowed and not another??  Ok, technically, it is illegal to discriminate according to race, sex, etc.  But, also a form of selective discrimination is allowed based upon religious belief for the dispensing of drugs, why limit the offended rights there??

            It's playing devil's advocate.

            •  re discrimination (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Mark27
              1. It's not discrimination to allow people to smoke when others don't want to be near it.
              1. It would be discrimination to prohibit people who don't smoke.
              1. That I prefer not to go to a gay bath house does not mean that I am being discriminated against.
              1. I am able to go to one if I choose, in the same way that anyone was able to walk into the smoking section at a restaurant, but I choose not to.

              IMHO, the religious belief vs dispensing drugs is problematic when applied to this topic because a straight parallel would force someone to sell tobacco even if they felt it was a noxious drug. I'd rather not go down that path to be honest.

              If we wrap this all together and look for a philosophical precedent, it's easy to find: there's a long history of liberals and conservatives fighting over public morality. Liberals have traditionally argued that what an individual does is their business, while conservatives have argued that immorality harms others not directly involved. It's that divide which explains anti-sodomy laws in conservative jurisdictions and gay marriage in liberal ones. The irony is that liberals are using traditionally conservative moral arguments on smoking even though we reject those same arguments on virtually any other issue of social morality.

              Sure, there was a time when non-smoking bars were non-existent. Businessmen were frightened to gamble that there was a smoke-free market. But sales went up after the ban in CA, so we've established that there's a large smoke-free market. We can lift the ban and most bar owners will maintain the prohibition, but some will revert to the smoking-allowed rules in order to serve a market which has been prohibited by law.

              The Atlantic Monthly online is now subscription-free... including archives!

              by opendna on Mon Jan 28, 2008 at 08:43:01 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site