With the start today of the no smoking in bars laws we’ve also had a deluge of very expensive TV advertising. I’ve captured a sample and you can see it below.
While largely agnostic to the laws as a non smoker I was struck by the assertion at the start of the ad that the laws are “by popular demand”.
Being a bit stupid and old fashioned I’d thought that the way “popular demand” in a democracy was measured was through a referendum. And I can’t recall when we voted on this?
For that matter when did we decide that taxpayers money should be spent on lying to them through the commercial media?
To repeat my position, we could have had air quality laws that would have delivered better health and safety outcomes while leaving bar owners free to innovate a safe solution. Instead we have, once again, behavioural controls with no guarantee of achieving their outcome (many beer gardens will be hazy places indeed).
Meanwhile I’ll have to take up smoking if i want to talk to my friends standing around outside the bar. I guess I’ll drink less that way.
But that brings me back to the big question, why do they lie if it’s good for us?