Skip to comments.About Those Anti-Smoking Commercials
Posted on 04/22/2012 10:10:28 AM PDT by relictele
By now most have viewed at least one of the HHS anti-smoking commercials featuring victims of various cancers and other ailments caused - they say - by smoking and tobacco use. It's a cliche but still true: these are our tax dollars at work. Your government commissioned these ads and purchased the airtime with your cash. HHS Secretary Sebelius and her minions risk another sort of medical problem - namely, rotator cuff injuries from patting themselves on the back for foisting these grotesque, voyeuristic images on an unsuspecting, undeserving public. This isn't a tear in the eye of Iron Eyes Cody when he sees litter along a roadway; this are 21st century bureaucratic bullies grabbing you by the scruff of your proverbial neck and rubbing your nose in the misfortunes of others under the rubric of education.
Let's stipulate that smoking is injurious to health and has strong links to cancer and other diseases. A reasonable person might also point out that anti-smoking campaigns have been in place for most of our lives and cigarette packages have carried anti-smoking messages for just as long, making these ads surplus to requirements. They rely on the Fallacy Of The Dramatic Example by showing the worst examples (apart from actual corpses - but let's not give them any ideas). But extreme scenarios involving death or disfigurement could be conjured up for nearly every activity in life: driving a car, skydiving, skiing, or even slipping in the bathtub.
The ads and the sentiments expressed are based in cowardice. If the substance being discussed is maiming and killing indiscriminately, why has it not be completely banned from use? We know the answer - and so does HHS - but the same government sponsoring this modern-day Elephant Man sideshow is hopelessly, er, addicted to the taxes generated by smoking. The ends-justify-the-means crowd have an enduring blind spot on this issue. Remember governors and state attorneys general rubbing their hands with glee over tobacco settlement money? It was supposed to be a twin panacea for public health and public finance. Where did all those billions go? And why aren't we all hale and hearty by now as a result of state benificences?
As someone once said, the Bill of Rights should be amended to include The Right To Be Left The Hell Alone. Most of us have precious little leisure time available. When we choose to allocate some of those hours to watching TV i.e. escapism, we do not and should not wish to be subjected to graphic video of amputations, prosthetics, voice kazoos, etc. when we are simply attempting to relax for a few fleeting moments before heading back to work (at least for those still lucky and/or disciplined enough to do so) in order to pay the salaries of Sebilius et al.
Elections mean pandering, and the ongoing political battles over health care mean that the disabled and the ill are often targets of such pandering. We are always scolded with 'person first, disability second' by many of these same DC health commissars. Don't rob them of their dignity or their humanity, we are told (and don't forget the inevitable ADA lawsuits). To them I respond: if you want dignity, then Step #1 is to refuse any offer to act as a political show pony. Surely by now you know that after a few seconds under the lights with a candidate for a photo op, you will be as distant a memory as last Thursday's lunch order. Ignore the blather about cautionary tales, etc. You cannot set a good example by setting a bad example, therefore anyone claiming to be your champion is lying. If you are self-aware enough to realize what your lifestyle has wrought on your body, then please be self-aware enough to realize when you are being exploited.
Leftists have a cult-like obsession with disease and death. Look at their pet causes: environmentalism (i.e. man is voluntarily poisoning his world and in turn himself), euthanasia (they've convinced millions that 'doctor-assisted suicide' is not an oxymoron) and, of course, abortion. They are equally obsessed with playing God, deciding who is worthy of medical care, drugs, and operations, as well as the nonstop coercion of food providers and consumers with laws, bans, restrictions, labels, etc.
Proponents of the ads will claim that shocking images are the only way to get people's attention and change their behavior. But why and how should government be in charge of our attention i.e. our thoughts? References to Orwell and 'Nineteen Eighty-Four' are easy but in this case they are absolutely relevant. As before, an intelligent, educated and free people should neither need nor want any central authority attempting to dictate what to think or how to behave. The individuals appearing in these ads and those subjected to watching them have one thing in common: a government constantly attempting to manipulate them in order to amass more power.
I see them frequently when watching the west coast satellite feed that carries Dodgers games.
they are revolting, manipulative, and cheap. I flip the channel for 30 seconds.
I don’t see them locally much. maybe the HHS doesn’t give a damn about red states. heh.
So much of what the government does is just manipulation, or — “social engineering” as they say nowadays.
Tax policy? Social Engineering.
Government Schools? Social Engineering.
Obamacare? Social Engineering.
Anti-smoking ads? Social Engineering.
You either want the government to manipulate people, or you don’t. If you can find an example of “good” social engineering, then you are accepting the concept that government ought to manipulate people. I do not accept that concept.
At what point to they admit these ads don’t work? They’ve been going on forever and people still smoke.
When’s the HHS video depicting AIDS patient’s shriveled bodies resulting from homosexual anal sex coming out?
Where do taxes on cigarettes actually go? To government employees, subsidies for liberal causes, and payola for those who contribute to liberal campaigns. Go ahead, have your local church apply for a grant to help people quit smoking. You'll be denied. Create a group called Conservatives Against Smoking, and apply for a grant - you'll be denied.
Now create a grant for ‘Family Planning of Greater (whereever)’ and apply, and you'll win the grant. Or ‘Homeless Advocates of (any big city)’, and you'll win that grant.
Cigarette taxes are just another way of funding the liberal machine. Those funds go to groups who have no connection to anti-smoking programs, and they provide anti-smoking materials that have little chance of actually working - but come from companies that contribute to liberal causes.
Your grant will come with cash for someone to run the program, money to distribute the materials for the program, and free drug samples to hand to people. And to provide proof that you're actually doing something with this money, you only need take a shot of a display in the corner of an office — that the public never sees.
And once they've mined this for as much gold as they can possibly squeeze, they'll move on to the next demon, as they still have a liberal machine to feed. More abortions to fund. More embezzling of taxpayer funds.
Smoking may be harmful to your health. If people still smoke then no amount of disgusting ads are going to stop them.
The only way to end smoking is to ban cigarettes and cigars. And since the parasites in DC take money from tobacco with one hand while handing out cash to make anti smoking ads with the other, that isnt going to be likely.
I suspect this is the reason:If the substance being discussed is maiming and killing indiscriminately, why has it not be completely banned from use? We know the answer - and so does HHS - but the same government sponsoring this modern-day Elephant Man sideshow is hopelessly, er, addicted to the taxes generated by smoking.
If the gubment ever had to give up their addiction to cigarette taxes cold turkey, they couldn't do it.
An excellent question. I suspect you'll see that happen the day Barry 0bama heads up the Illinois Tea Party.
I smoke and drink. I know the consequences. Im not stupid. But none of us gets out of this world alive. Its called freedom while we are on gods green earth.
These Ads are a public service for themselves (government)
According to the CDC there are @ 45Million smokers in the US. If you figure a pack a day for each smoker....that comes to $16,589,350,000(Billion) just in federal taxes of $1.01/pk.
The federal tax pays for the SCHIP program.
The average of all state taxes settles to around $1.46/pack, this figure generates $23,980,500,00(Billion) as an average - some states tax more - others less.
So, in essence, there’s around $40 Billion dollars per year being generated by cigarette taxation of users that goes to the government.
When these taxes started ramping up - and the MSA (Master Settlement Agreement) kicked in, these taxes were all said to go to help the smoker quit and help with medical expenses...it never did. The only thing that’s left is the cursory annoying ads that say smoking is bad~ but taxes are good.
Government Coffers need more revenue; as smokers quit - those taxes quit. They’ll need to shift to other societal tags, whether glowball warming or obesity,etc. - the products of the nation needs to be taxed - and heavily....there’s oodles of spending to do - someone has to pay for it....who can “we” shame taxes out of next?
Watch those “Public Service Announcement” ads - watch the news stories...there’s a new tax piggy-bank on the horizon. There has to be - or Big Government Fails.
This isn’t about smoking ~ Never was.
Because the Gov' has created whole offices dedicated to this cause.
They still need tax revenues to pay these wages even though what they do is completely useless.
“As someone once said, the Bill of Rights should be amended to include The Right To Be Left The Hell Alone.”
Obviously, that was said by a very wise person.
But today, the government and secular media powers and manipulators force their agenda on the population not unlike a loud spouting Communist propaganda at a Khmer Rouge prison work camp.
We are bombarded with anti-smoking ads, as well as Non-Christian dogma and by those who support the alleged rights to promote and practice homosexuality.
Yes, we not a Constitutional Amendment grant us the right to be left alone and not have the government dictate how we run our lives.
It didn’t stop the guy in the ad after he started losing limbs to the rare Buerger’s disease. (Which BTW you can get even if you don’t smoke.) What effect is his ad going to have on people who chose to smoke?
I thought the most effective anti-smoking commercials were the ones from about 40 years ago, done by Hollywood stars who were smokers and knew they were in a serious battle with lung cancer. The ones by John Wayne, Yul Brynner, and William Talman (DA Hamilton Burger from “Perry Mason”) really got my attention.
I believe the Yul Brynner and William Talman ads were filmed when they were terminally ill, and broadcast soon after their deaths.
Central authority manipulation,no word from them how being a homosexual unhealthy.Note post five.
I’ve graduated to the smokeless, non-tar and chemical electronic Bleu cigs. They are pretty good, taste fairly real and have good vapor. BUT, not as satisfying as a good smoke. I do intend to stick with them due to a couple health issues, but ABSOLUTELY support smoker’s rights.
I expect the gov will soon be taxing the healthier electronic cigs — if they aren’t already.
I’ve never had them. Do you recommend a smoker trying them? What do they taste like???
I started with them about 6 months ago, tried various brands and have settled on the Bleu-cigs for taste and smoke vapor. The disposables (which I use presently), are about $10 each at Walgreen’s and some other outlets. One lasts 2 to 3 days depending on much you use it. A regular cigarette lasts maybe 5 minutes, and a pack about a day for most people. So the cost is good.
The only drawback I’ve found is that the manufacturer could be more consistent with quality in that some last longer than others. But over all, very good.
The taste is really pretty comparable to a regular or menthol cigarette and there is enough smokeless vapor to blow rings if so desired - lol.
The cost is much less if you buy the kit and refills (www.bleucigs.com) but I haven’t done that yet.
Do not try Enjoy, or any of the really cheap brands from convenience and other stores — most have a terrible taste.
Thanks! I check them out!
There is nothing positive about cigarette smoking. Nothing. Anything, including these commercials, that can persuade young people to never start or smokers to quit is a good thing. When I think of all the things government wastes money on, this is not one of them.
You have no idea if they don’t work. I heard a statistic about two weeks ago that the hotline for people to call to quit jumped by like 50 percent after these commercials started airing. I do agree with the other poster who brought up AIDS though. Why don’t they show commercials about that as well?
Thank you, Mayor Bloomberg!
Love your post, Jeff! Seriously - give up the smokes but protect smokers’ rights. As always, this is a complicated idea, so, of course, the left-wing hypochondriacs can’t comprehend it.
Sorry, I haven’t watched commercial television in years and as a result I just never see ads. They’re a form of mental assault. Once you “quit the habit” you’ll never want to go back.
I’m sure you are another militant smoker, like my mother WAS. Of course, that was when she had two lungs with which to harass people.
Nope. Not a smoker. Simply don’t want any nanny state statist telling me what to do with my bode. And I don’t believe in the 2nd hand smoke junk science.