Brickbat: No Smoking Allowed

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The Santa Monica, California, city council has voted to ban new tenants of multi-unit residential buildings from smoking inside their homes and to require current residents to declare their units smoking or non-smoking.

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  1. Wow that sounds totally constitutional.

    1. Also terribly unexpected, coming as it does from a bastion of freedom and well-managed government like California.

      1. I also like the irony of this coming from Santa Monica.

        Is that too hipster of me?

  2. multi-unit residential buildings

    It’s no coincidence that progressives are always so keen on everyone living apartment buildings. Once you herd people into them, they are easier to control with the “But what about the neighbors trapped inside with those foul _________?!?” They’d have an incredibly hard time banning smoking in detached housing (without using the children excuse), and they’d actually piss off people who’ll get out and vote.

    “If all of Rome had but one neck!”

    And, of course, the phantom danger of 2nd hand smoke that can bore right through walls to murder innocent neighbors or 3rd hand smoke in carpets to murder future tenants is the sort of junk science that makes warmists so suspect when they appeal to the absolute veracity of scientific opinion.

    “Ohmergehd! GMOs! Vaccines!”

    1. Also, gives the dunphies another opening. We thought we smelled tobacco smoke, so we had probable cause to kick down the door, shoot the dog and hassle the inhabitants.

    2. 4th hand smoke: Particulates picked up by shoes then inhaled by fetishists.

      Is no one safe!?

    3. Then there’s butt-hand smoke.
      That’s when you fart out the smoke that was blown up your ass.

    4. 6th hand smoke: Reading a wiki article about Sir Walter Raleigh.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Raleigh

  3. I argue with my republican friends all the time. We all agree on one thing–we hate cigarette smoke. However, we disagree on what to do about it. They want to ban smoking in restaurants. I don’t. If the establishment doesn’t make accomodations for their non-smoking customers, then I don’t want to go there. I have no RIGHT to patron that place, just as that restaurant has no RIGHT to have me as a patron. If we mutually agree to the arrangement, then that’s between us and no one else. If they don’t allow smoking or have a separate section for smokers that won’t affect me while I go there, fantastic, I’ll go there. If smokers can smoke anywhere in the restaurant, I’ll take my money elsewhere.

    “But what about the employees?” They don’t have a right to that job. If the employer wants to keep them and they want to stay there, good! If they make an arrangement so those who don’t want to be around cigarette smoke can stay in the non-smoking section, great! If the employer does not wish to make the agreement, then the employee can either deal with it or find another place to work. It is 100% unnecessary to involve the government in any of this!

    1. I argue with my republican friends all the time. We all agree on one thing–we hate cigarette smoke. However, we disagree on what to do about it.

      So you don’t have any friends who smoke (20%+ of the population), and you don’t know any Republicans who support the private property rights of business owners(I’d guess about half).
      Do you live in some simulacrum of America like Sarah Palin warned us about?

      1. I live in Alabama. Most of us are from different parts of the country.

        Do I have any friends that smoke? I can’t think of any right off the top of my head. Colleagues, sure, but not friends.

    2. I’ve always wondered about the “what about the employees” argument. It’s complete B.S. That’s what respirators are for. I’ve worked in places where the only safe way to do your job is to don an acid gas respirator. Maybe people wouldn’t lile it, but too bad. You want to work, wear your PPE.

  4. Yeah, exactly. Outback Steakhouse corporately banned smoking in all of its restaurants long before most states/counties/cities banned it. And if anything it helped their business, as me and a lot of people I know would go their over similar chain restaurants for specifically that reason.

    Well, it also didn’t hurt that they put heroin in their blooming onions. And the waitresses would sit in the seat next to you to talk about your order, which for years was the closest thing to female social contact that I had.

    In all honesty they probably did it for fear of being sued by former employees more than because they wanted to make their places more desireable to non-smokers. But still several local restaurants followed suit. And this was in South Carolina, someone just had to prove that it wouldn’t kill your business.

    1. A while back I was working at one of the only non-smoking restaurants in the city when the city counsel passed a law making it a crime to smoke in a restaurant.

      Within two months I was looking for work.

      1. *council*

        1. So it was a crappy restaurant, but got customers because they could eat in one of the few smoke-free environments?

          Or is there something I’m missing?

          1. Nope. You’re not missing a thing.

            1. If you have a failed business, you didn’t destroy that. Someone else destroyed it for you.

              1. If you have a failed business, you didn’t destroy that. Someone else destroyed it for you.

                That is the other side of the President’s speech isn’t it? We are no longer responsible for our failures.

                1. If by “we” you mean Democratic donors, then you are unquestionably right.

    2. My stepdad responded to his customers by first splitting the dining area into smoking and non smoking and then eventually went full non smoking in the dining area but still smoking in the 2 bar areas. This was like 10 years ago when the recent push to ban all smoking everywhere in my part of SC was just a twinkle in some statists eye. At first some people complained that they could still smell smoke from the bar but as filtration technology has improved the odor of smoke is negligible. And as an added bonus the smokers are happy they have a place where they can still smoke and not be forced outside.

      1. Back in my younger days I worked at restuarant in a small town in Utah. This was before the health nannies focused on tobacco, but being Utah, this little greasy spoon was one of only two restuarants in town you could smoke in. So they packed ’em in just about everyday.

        Sometimes you just need a place to eat your crappy food, drink your crappy coffee and smoke your cancer stick in peace like a civilized man.

        It shutdown when the whole state went non-smoking.

        1. In that city I was in that banned smoking, many corner bars shut down once the patrons weren’t allowed to smoke.

        2. There was a seafood place in Wheaton, MD, Anchor Inn, that had been there since before Moses went for his walk. Nothing special, plenty of blue hairs occupying seats, but it was a local cultural icon.

          They spent $100,000 on smoke eater equipment when the Monkey County council mandated non-smoking sections. 2-3 years later, when they banned smoking entirely, the owners said fuck it and shut down. The sign is still there, anchoring (no pun) a set of new shops (still half vacant) built where the Inn was, as some kind of ghostly reminder to not fuck with the powers that be.

          The mealy-mouthed shits on the council replied with “We never promised we wouldn’t ban smoking.” Which is true and should be a lesson for anyone thinking about trusting the word of a slimy old pol promising you free ponies.

  5. I’m actually somewhat on the fence about smoking as a natural right. If someone is blowing smoke in my face that’s violating my ability to breathe clean air. And I’m not convinced that second-hand smoke is innocuous. Smoke is a health hazard the first time it is breathed in, why would it not have health effects in a less concentrated form? I think this is one of those gray areas like, say, playing loud music.

    1. There is a difference between someone walking up to you and blowing smoke in your face, and you making a choice to enter an environment that you know will contain smoke.

      1. Depending on the construction of the building, smoke from one unit in a multi-unit building can stink up your place. This has been my experience from both ends of the cigarette.

        1. Nobody is forcing you to be there.

    2. why would it not have health effects in a less concentrated form?

      The dose makes the poison. (“Alle Ding’ sind Gift, und nichts ohn’ Gift; allein die Dosis macht, da? ein Ding kein Gift ist.” — Paracelsus.)
      Hypervitaminosis is my favorite example.

    3. The evidence regarding the dangers of second-hand smoke is tenuous at best. It’s a terrible piece of epidemiology. It’s not going to harm you in the long run unless you live with it every day for years. It’s not going to harm you in the short run unless you are asthmatic or allergic. Like all poisons, the harm is in the dose. Second hand smoke is a very small dose.

      If someone breaths smoke directly into your face it is only annoying, not harmful (barring asthma/allergy), but it could possibly be charged as an assault. When it comes to restaurants, though, its your choice to go to the restaurant. If the restaurant allows smoking and you don’t like it, you are free to go somewhere else.

    4. If someone is blowing smoke in my face that’s violating my ability to breathe clean air.

      I’d have to disagree, because when you entered that person’s establishment that allows smoking, didn’t you accept this as a possibility? And you’re still free to breathe clean air by patronizing any other place in town that does not allow smoke at all.

    5. I find it hilarious that so many people get all worked up about the “dangers” of second-hand smoke but ignore the fact that on a daily basis we all suck in the massive amounts of car exhaust freely floating in the air and think nothing of it.

    6. Smoke is a health hazard the first time it is breathed in, why would it not have health effects in a less concentrated form?

      Damn near everything can kill you in sufficient concentrations. The old saying “the poison is in the dose” is true.

      If someone is blowing smoke in my face that’s violating my ability to breathe clean air.

      And you demanding that they not smoke is violating their ability to, well, smoke. What to do, what to do?

  6. “If someone is blowing smoke in my face that’s violating my ability to breathe clean air.”

    Obviously there is no problem with blowing smoke up peoples asses.

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