||Smoking, Taxes and the
$145 Billion punitive judgment gave me something to think about and come
to some conclusions about confusing approaches to fairness and personal
I will not be giving detailed historical
fact; just some logical thoughts.
With most laws the US congress produces
and the respective administrations enact, an other incremental limitation
of the freedoms of the American People is the effect. And as some wise
Americans have said: "The less the congress does the better".
Congress, in the name of the American
People, has done some things, it has instituted to tax the sales of tobacco
products. So, how many billions (adjusted for inflation) has the government
racked in? Did the government officials know about the danger of smoking
(and chewing)? Who didn't? I knew as a 6 or 7 year old, some some 58 years
ago that smoking was not good for your health!
Taxing a dangerous product, and it is
clear that tobacco was always known to be unhealthy, brings the government
and the manufacturers in collusion. Both made lots of money from this dangerous
product and habit. So the government, representing "We the People",is responsible.
That makes us all responsible. However, some are more responsible: the
smokers. Because there is choice. You (the majority) got the laws arranged
for your convenience, so that you will be able to kill your unborn children.
You had also the choice to smoke or not
to smoke. Understand well,this does not let the tobacco industry off the
hook. I have no argument with suing the tobacco manufacturers for advertisement
meant to attract young children to smoking. I have however an argument
with parents, who smoke while having under aged children; these parens
are disqualified to have any complain against tobacco manufacturers.
What is this cigarette smoking doing in
our modern society anyway? Why are we still holding on to this obsolete
custom? Shouldn't we reject this objectionable despiccable habit? What
about cigars or chew tobacco or sniff? There are better things to smell,
chew and sniff!
But as long as it is not in someone els
space, you should be able to smoke, if you choose to do so, in the Land
of the Free and the Home of the Brave.
Paul Olivier. 7/21/2000