Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Mutiny in the Attic?

....my Attic brothers are weary of the smoking ban information I attempt to bring to the world via our alternative media source. Hence the poll in the upper right hand side of this blog, please vote early and vote often.

My "brothers" deny that any Robert Wood Johnson Foundation donations are behind their motives to silence me, but I have my doubts. If you spot any one of them sporting a new BMW, Mercedes, or purchasing new summer homes I ask that you please inform me immediately....the integrity of our alternative journalistic trade is at stake.

I was beginning to feel somewhat attacked & defeated....when I spotted this headline:
Bush denies losing clout, vows to push agenda.

and so inspired by our valiant leader's renewed vigor, I too shall continue to push my agenda.

(but would it kill you to cast a vote in my favor? I'm in desperate need of some "political capital".)

Saturday, May 28, 2005

When government interferes with free market forces on behalf of a competing business entity...

....I call it fraud. .......How about you?

If you were a devote Guiness drinker and politicians banned Guiness in Hennepin County bars because Miller brewing promulgated a lie. Wouldn't you frequent the Ramsey county bars where Guiness flowed freely?

Smoking ban legislation is paid for by the RWJF pharmaceutical nicotine interests. It is big business, profit motivated, facts on secondhand smoke be damned.

Deceptive tactics funded by taxpayer dollars....

....by now most Minnesotans have heard the outright lying radio ads which state every year 38,000 people die from secondhand smoke. Well even our own Lung Assoc. backs away from that false statement. In a comment from an earlier post, a reader took the Lung Assoc. to task for advertising those false claims, Bob from Am. Lung was quick to distance themselves from those ads saying their organization wasn't responsible. When businesses show up to testify against smoking ban legislation they always ask their opponents one question, "...show us one death certificate that proves even one person died of secondhand smoke....."...the room falls silent, and the anti-smoking activists never respond.

Well, an insider tells me that the source of those ads is none other than taxpayer funded MPAAT. Oddly enough, even a biased non-profit organization like Am. Lung wouldn't make such a blatantly false claim, but an out of control, irresponsible Mn. tax-funded department will. I'll say again what many of our top MN. politicians have already publicly stated, MPAAT needs to be disbanded. They were funded by a small percentage of the tobacco awards, to educate youth and smokers interested in quitting. They were not awarded money to spread lies and pay for smoking ban legislation.

The state legislators tabled the smoking ban legislation for two reasons:
1) the deceptive practices of the out of control MPAAT tactics, and
2) the St. Louis Park health department study which showed secondhand smoke is actually 150 times lower (safer than) OSHA permissible exposure limits. When will MPAAT learn that they are doing more to impede a statewide smoking ban than anybody else? I hope never.

By the way, I think the radio stations airing those ads, should also air the facts about the St. Louis Park Environmental Health Department test results regarding secondhand smoke. If they are going to air MN. taxpayer funded lies, they also ought to air environmental health department facts and their comparison to OSHA guidelines.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

What color is the clean air in your world?.......

Today as I was making my Smokeeter sales call rounds, I decided to stop at some Minneapolis establishments to see how much business they have gained from the clean fresh air now mandated upon their menu.

First stop Liquor Lyle's .....as I mentioned on an earlier post I stopped by here 3/31 Thurs. the first night of the smoking ban. Normally the place would have been elbows to a**holes with customers, but this Thurs. night I counted maybe a dozen. Anybody who knows the place knows it used to be a young smoking busy crowd, thankfully the smoking ban has taken care of that problem for them....business is down said manager Val....she wouldn't specify how much.

Mortimers on Lyndale told me Thursday nights used to be the biggest night for them, they now have plenty of room to sit & watch TV though, with 60%-70% of the crowd thinned out. Ah.....nice fresh air............too bad money doesn't just appear out of that nice clean air. The bar manager cursed the non-profits saying ".....where's all the business they promised us, the least they could do is stop in and leave something in our tip jar....."

A regular who knows the staff at Leaning Tower of Pizza said the uptown store was down 20% in business while the campus store was down 40% in business......ah, they're poor.......but healthy....thank god.

CC Club business is down, so they built an outdoor patio, that will work til winter....then what?

Runyon's staff said they're business is down, but their sister establishment Cafe Havana is in real bad shape.......don't cry too much for these two though, just as the smoking ban was being talked about in Mpls. last spring....John the senior owner at Runyon, Cafe Havana, Monte Carlo, said to me...."......Mark I'm all for the smoking ban....." This guy owns one of the oldest cigar bars in town and then says he can't wait for a smoking ban...... In case you haven't guessed it, owning bars for him is a hobby, he made his millions buying & selling real estate all over Mpls. ........so he has reaped what he wished for as far as I'm concerned.

I also stopped at Harvey's in Mpls., where waitstaff figures business is down 35-50%.

I could do this all day everyday, and usually spend 30-60 minutes a week asking random establishments....I have yet to find one establishment to say going non-smoking has increased business. But the employees are sure healthier.... maybe its because they're out of work that they're healthier.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Don't piss on our heads & tells us it's raining.......

Our local American Lunger organization spokesman attempts to refute business losses & closings by saying:

Let's see what the taxman says about bar and restaurant income at the end of the year. Until then, you guys are just blowing smoke.

Well lunger let me give you a preview,

Specifically, the following statewide economic losses have occurred in New York's bar and tavern industry as a direct result of the statewide smoking ban:

2,000 jobs (10.7% of actual employment)
$28.5 million in wages and salary payments
$37 million in gross state product

In addition, there are indirect losses to other businesses which supply and service the state's bars and taverns:

650 jobs
$21.5 million in labor earnings
$34.5 million in gross state product

In summary, the enactment of the New York State smoking ban has had a dramatic negative impact on the bar and tavern business and related businesses. The total economic impact is:

2650 jobs
$50 million in worker earnings
$71.5 million in gross state product (output)

this study conducted by REA and its Founder, Brian O'Connor, Ph.D.

For twenty-five years, he has worked with IBM and customer executives to help them assess the impact of economic conditions on their businesses, to anticipate developments in their markets and to track their performance against potential.

For the last few years, Brian has held the position of Senior Technical Consultant to Texas Perspectives, Inc., an economic consulting firm based in Austin, Texas which specializes in regional economic and public policy analysis.

bob the lunger continues telling us here why losing your business or job is still just a figment of our imagination.

Did you note that the April 2005 employment report for MN showed the 2nd highest category of new jobs was in the hospitality industry?

Looking back a month ago, jobs looked ok yet bob......let me see what happened since then...a smoking ban? Let me point out that hospitality also includes fast food establishments and amusement parks, which see no impact; since most were already non-smoking of their own accord.

So far Bloomington Park Tavern closed its doors (according to a comment) , ditto Larry's Lounge in Long Lake; the two establishments which were the media darlings for the anti-smoking advocates Tavern on Grand & Glockenspiel in Ramsey applied for waivers to again allow smoking to stop the business losses. And then there is the Mpls. media darling Bryant Lake Bowl, who cheered R.T. Rybak signing the ordinance to their demise. I stopped there three weeks into the ban and waitstaff informed me there is a serious downturn in business; however being on the Mpls side of the river, there is no waiver to stop the hemorrhaging.

Yeah, lunger by the end of the year the average citizen will have forgotten all about the lost businesses and lost jobs................ let's all wait patiently til the end of the year, it'll be a fun surprise to see who is still in business.

I have a better idea...... for those bars & restaurants who want a fighting chance and instead of just closing your doors....remember it's not your job to pull the cigarette out of your customers lips....it's your job to hang up the no-smoking sign. If I owned a bar losing 50% business because customers can't smoke, I'd look the other way; what have I got to lose? If I don't let them smoke I lose the business, if they light up and I get a ticket......oh well ......I'm still in business.

Would I advocate breaking the law? of course not. Do I advocate breaking a law paid for and written by the pharmaceutical nicotine industry?.....abso-fricken-lutely.

Monday, May 23, 2005

When the Star & Sickle is on your side....

.....you know your in deep sh*t.

The Elder cites the sickle's coverage of Gov. Pawlenty's cigarette tax concession. While reading the post I noted that the red rag stopped just short of calling Pawlenty a "nuanced" thinker.....when that happens kiss your career as a Republican good-bye.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

The butterfly effect.......

"One meteorologist remarked that if the theory were correct, one flap of a butterfly's wings would be enough to alter the course of the weather forever."

In providing links to the previous post, I ended with a link to the famous cigar manufacturer Arturo Fuente. On their site I found this video page and played the "Cuesta-Rey Story" video.

As I watched the all-handmade cigar story it occurred to me that the smoking bans in this country also have an impact on jobs in third world nations. No worries though mate, those cigar rollers and manufacturers will easily find work in the cocaine and cannabis fields, if their jobs are eliminated. And the best part about that for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is that they benefit from the drug addicts in this country via their drug rehabilitation programs. It's a win win situation if you're a pharmaceutical nicotine foundation.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Deep thoughts by marcus aurelius.....

.........TFB brought home a copy of Milton Friedman's "Capitalism & Freedom"

In the introduction he states:"...How can we keep the government we create from becoming a Frankenstein that will destroy the very freedom we establish it to protect?...."

Regarding smoking bans I pondered..... was the government destined to such restrictions of personal freedom on its own?......I think not. However, the clever marketing by pharmaceutical nicotine companies forced via donations and grants thru the non-profit health organizations brought this unnecessary government restriction on the hospitality industry because of the non-profits' credibility with the general populace.

Local governments' have bought into the notion that it is their responsibility to ban a legal activity from occurring in privately owned establishments for two fundamentally flawed reasons:

1) Elected officials naively believe whatever the non-profit health organizations tell them, because of the historically credible clout the American Lung Assoc., American Cancer Society, American Medical Association and others have wielded with the general population.

-however once the non-profit organizations accepted donations from the pharmaceutical nicotine industry they were no longer credible and unbiased sources of information regarding secondhand smoke, and the general public is beginning to see that. In addition closer to home, the 2004 City of St. Louis Park, MN. Environmental Health Dept. air quality test results proved secondhand smoke is not the health hazard the pharmaceutical nicotine marketing machines (non-profit health organizations) claimed it was.

2) Since approximately 80% of the general public does not smoke, supporting a smoking ban is a sure fire re-election stance.

-again however, the general population, especially non-smokers are beginning to see smoking bans for what they are; a violation of private property rights. The notion of a privately owned establishment being a "public" or "quasi-public" place isn't sitting well with business owners ..or homeowners. They are beginning to ask themselves.....if government can eliminate legal activities in those private facilities, how long before my private property rights will be infringed upon?

A Frankenstein in the making? .......Or can it be reversed?.....The answer lies with the people....for "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." ( Edmund Burke)

Seldom is it the numbers that determine the outcome, but whether those who claim to be good men are willing to stand up and fight for what they know to be right.

This deep moment was brought to you by consumption of Glenfiddich and Arturo Fuente

Wake up bar & restaurant owners.....

.....it's speakeasy time.

Don't you just love those Eastern Europeans, they seem to understand freedom better than Americans.

Besides it's fun to be a rebel!

Pay no attention to the man ...behind the curtain.....

...or more appropriately in the unemployment line.

Mr. Lunger tries to defend smoking bans by saying they're not bad for business...they're just misunderstood, here is a website with a different story or two to tell.

One fun anecdote:

Resisting the prevailing mood and refusing to frame the debate between people "who want to protect waitresses and people who want to kill waitresses" was Representative and former New York City Councilman Anthony Weiner (D). To illustrate his feeling that the government has overstepped its bounds and decimated New York nightlife, he recounted a conversation he had had with a woman who supports the ban gleefully, who quipped obliviously that "my hair doesn't stink, my clothes don't stink, and there's so much room at the bar."

Councilman Weiner may have actually heard the previous quote from Pink Monkey Bird.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Sorry, Attic members.....

....but I am told we have Freeborn county, MN., NYC, Philadelphia, St. Louis, MO., CO., NE., TX., OH. readers who are all going thru the attempted smoking ban legislation, as well as MN. lawmakers, so I will continue updating smoking ban actions.

The Board of Directors of the Minnesota Partnership for Action Against Tobacco (MPAAT) approved grants for new research and to assist the work of community organizations in support of local smoke-free initiatives. MPAAT will award up to $3.1 million in 2005 to researchers and community groups through these grants.

05/19: MPAAT Awards Eleven Grants for Research and Community Secondhand Smoke Initial Targeted communities: City of St. Cloud, Goodhue, Ramsey, Dakota, Washington Counties among others. Lets start warning them.

If MPAAT wants a sure fire way to defeat the statewide smoking ban efforts for years to come this is it, these tactics were under fire by A.G. Mike Hatch in 2002. And a number of prominent MN. legislators earlier this year mentioned this very reason for not supporting statewide smoking bans. MPAAT helps the private property rights people whenever they use state tax dollars to lobby for one side of the issue.

Thank you again MPAAT............(I didn't think they were on our side).

Oh, by the way don't forget the City of St. Louis Park, MN. Evironmental Health Dept. found that secondhand smoke is 150 times safer than OSHA permissible exposure limits. OSHA regulates air quality in the bar / restaurant workplace already if you didn't know that.

What can I say to this?......

Rebels Seize Control of Uzbekistan Town

"We will be building an Islamic state here in accordance with the Quran," rebel leader Bakhtiyor Rakhimov told the Associated Press in Korasuv, a town of 20,000. "People are tired of slavery."

Tired of slavery?......if that's the case wouldn't you choose a less draconian religion to follow?

(other members of the attic are beginning to revolt, seems their tired of the smoking ban issue this post was for you)

Not a smoking ban post....

....(this is a public service announcement).

Sandy called me at noon the other day, wanting to know where she could take her work colleagues for lunch. Specifically, someplace where they served a heaping helping of private property rights. Here's the list of Ramsey county establishments which are still allowed to make big people decisions all by themselves.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Ah ....the fresh clean smell of unemployment on the Emerald Isle.....

....still think it's your right to breath it?

Published in the BBC News

More than 500 pubs have closed in Ireland because of the smoking ban, says Seamus O'Donaghue, president of the Vitners' Federation of Ireland (VFI). Speaking at the VFI annual general meeting in Cork he called on the Irish Government to introduce some flexibility in its smoking legislation to save rural publicans who have been the worst hit. "The reality of the smoking ban is anything but successful," he said. "We recognise that the smoking ban is here and is here to stay and we are not asking for it to be rescinded. However, we firmly believe that there is room for compromise. "Although the smoking ban isn't just about pubs, it is rural pubs that have been worst affected. We are aware of just over 200 licensed premises that have closed since the introduction of the smoking ban in March 2004. "According to the CSO, 7,600 jobs were lost in the hospitality sector in 2004 - that equates to 150 jobs per week."

And in today's Publican:

Enterprise Inns is planning for a full smoking ban rather than the government's food-only compromise-and expects to have to close up to 300 pubs.

Sounds like Enterprise's chief doesn't believe there will be a compromised ban, so it's good-bye business and good-bye jobs. But as Jeanne Weigum, the president ........of the Association for Non-Smokers Rights.....is quoted as saying, "....... that's just the way it goes." Perhaps she's so cavalier about other's job losses because of nice fat contributions by pharmaceutical nicotine affiliate RWJF like this:
2001 American Non-Smokers Rights Foundation $971,114.00

More customers likely to drink at home, says reportPublished 18th May 2005

Limited choice, poor quality, steep price inflation and smoking regulations in pubs will continue to push more people into drinking at home over the next three years.

This can also be verified locally, as I posted yesterday a Hennepin County bar was forced to close days ago. Only 2 weeks prior he mentioned they were losing $300.00 + per day, while the liquor store next door was doing a booming business.

Everywhere smoking bans have been implemented businesses and individuals lose, the non-profits claim however the aggragate effect is just the opposite. To that Westover provides the best example in a comment here:

......Tax records will show what economic impact, if any, there is on government finances -- they will not show the impact on individual businesses. If people stop contributing to the American Lung Association and instead give to HIV research, charitable contributions will remain constant. Does that mean the ALA work is unaffected? Same principle, only in the latter case it's not government forcing the issue, but a marketplace response -- just as it is when people voluntarily decide to patronize non-smoking establishments. Government implemented a smoking ban, which is affecting some businesses more than others. That ban is arbitrary in the sense that the public health benefit proposed does not justify (and can be achieved through other means) than curtailing individual rights. In spirit if not in letter of the law, taxpayers (as imposed on them by Thune et. al) should be on the hook to reimburse businesses for the "benefits" derived from the ban. Instead, you want a free ride -- Marcus loses his livelihood to subsidize your smoke-free chili....

I recall receiving an email a few weeks back, which I unfortunately discarded where a local developer is willing to spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,000,000.00 to get a more responsible city council & county commission in office. If that individual reads this blog, he's got my help, I know many small business owners in the hospitality industry who will gladly chair those anti-business councils & commissions in the next election.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The pharmaceutical giants & their pawns take on Texas...

Westover points to this article from the Houston Press. Here are a few favorite excerpts:

None of these limitations means anything to Young, who will keep on smoking half a pack a day (more when studying) no matter how much antismokers try to stop him. "I could quit," he says, "but why?" Smoking-cessation products can cost up to $40 a pop, while a pack of cigarettes is only $4, which even a poor college student can scrounge up. And for every person who accosts Young with 'tude, there's another who shares his habit and could become a new friend.

$40 a pop, well let's figure out why, there are a lot of non-profits on the payroll. Between 1996-2002 the Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical affiliate RWJF alone paid out $133,620,603.00 to non-profits and organizations to lobby for smoking bans, I'm sure a campaign contribution or two also comes out of that smoking cessation cost.

"Now wait a minute," some of you antismokers might be saying. "I have the right to go out in public and not have to breathe smoke."Well, sorry, but bars and restaurants aren't public places. "These are privately owned establishments," says Dennis Keim, 52, a local rabble-rouser and occasional smoker. "If people don't want to be in that environment, there's nothing that forces them to be there. They have a choice of, in this town, something like 12,000 other eating establishments," he says, exaggerating the numbers a bit. (There are actually about 10,000 restaurants in the greater Houston area.)
Keim was okay with the ban, enacted in '92, that prohibited smoking on city property. "It's one thing to set policy in a facility that's owned by the government, where people have no alternative. You can't go to an alternative courthouse. You can't go to an alternative city hall.
But you can go to whatever restaurant you want. This is America..."

Private property rights now there's a novel idea, I don't think I heard that phrase uttered once in Minneapolis, Bloomington, or Hennepin County meetings.

When City Councilman Michael Berry voted against the recent smoking ban, he said, "If you don't like smoking restaurants, don't go to them. What we heard over and over again, and it disturbs me, is this notion that 'I want to go to [someone's restaurant], and I want to tell him how to serve me on my terms,' which is 'I want you to serve me with no smoke,' even though he wants to serve those people who smoke."

That's how you know you're in Texas, a lawmaker speaking common sense, against the whining liberal entitlement crowd. I still recall some snot nosed kid calling into the Bob Davis show "...hey...what about my right to go into a bar and not smell smoke..." Hey, snot face it's a private bar owned by an individual...no you don't have that right; also I don't believe I saw that "right" anywhere in the U.S. Constitution. But if you put enough liberals in city hall, or on the Nicoderm payroll anything is bound to happen... trampling of individual property rights.....for one thing.

Two University of North Texas economists studied the effects of the smoking ban in restaurants, and the results were released in October 2004: Dallas lost $11.8 million (or 3.6 percent) in alcoholic beverage sales in 2003 compared with 2002. You could blame it on a sliding economy, but business was booming in the smoke-friendly suburbs, where hooch sales increased from 3.2 percent (Richardson) to 7.9 percent (Plano) to 12.2 percent (Frisco). The only other city showing a loss was Irving, down 0.8 percent.
The study also claims four longtime Dallas restaurants were forced to close on account of the ban.

The non-profits and activists will of course spin this info. differently, though I don't know how. By the way one of my bar/restaurant customers in Hennepin County just filed for bankruptcy, now I'll have to take back possession of the Smokeeters they couldn't pay for. They had been in business for 5-10 years, I'm sure the smoking ban had nothing to do with it.

Any attempt to curtail smoking in bars and restaurants is an attempt to curtail smoking in general. The less people can smoke, the logic goes, the less they will. But is that such a good thing?

In 2003, Texas smokers paid 41 cents a pack in excise taxes, totaling more than $501 million. They paid more than $271 million in sales tax on cigarettes and another $479 million in extra costs due to tobacco settlements, which goes straight to the state. The grand total: more than $1.25 billion a year.

That's a lot of money for roads, schools and hospitals.

The above is a point I hadn't even considered, but hopefully lawmakers will take it into account, before future legislation.

"Smokers are my best customers," says the 57-year-old nonsmoker, perched over a white tablecloth with Sinatra playing in the background. Over the years, Frank has lit more butts than a porn director, and when a customer runs out of smokes, he'll send a busboy across the street to pick up a pack.Smokers rarely get impatient, while "most nonsmokers say, 'Where's my food?' " he says, drumming his fingers for effect. And smokers often order expensive wines and hang around to drink them, while nonsmokers chug down their iced teas and hit the road.

The above waiter explains in real world terms why catering to the non-smoking crowd is a money loser for bars & restaurants.

Around the globe, and in your town; I'll continue to present the factual case of smoking bans and their effect on local economy. Next post an email I received on business losses on the Emerald Isle.

This social engineering update brought to you by Nicoderm..

.....kick their asses out on the street afterall, its not your job....its not your problem.

Jeanne Weigum, the president and harpy-in-charge of the Association for Non-Smokers Rights isn't shedding any tears. Weigum and her crew, along with city council buffoon Dave Thune were largely responsible for the ban's enactment. Weigum is quoted as saying, "People will just have to adjust." "The buggy whip went out with the horse and carriage too, that's just the way it goes."

Swiftee is on top of more jobs & business losses due to the smoking bans.

FYI......all you non-profit parasites with your multi-million dollar pharmaceutical grants can pay-off my mortgage anytime now, living on the streets because of your ordinances wasn't part of my plans.

Newsweek making up stories while Nightline defends...

The other members of the Attic will no doubt wonder why I haven't posted about my thoughts on Islam earlier, since they have known for years I have been quite opinionated on the subject.

I have read many parts of the Koran, and many parts of the Bible. After reading the Koran, and seeing how Muslims around the world behave, I formed my own opinions long ago of that religion. As a teenager I witnessed on television Israeli athletes killed during the Munich Olympics, the Carter / Iran hostage fiasco and many decades of Muslim plane and ship hijackings. So when I happened upon this book I identified with it immediately ....Sword of the Prophet....by Serge Trifkovic. It is a must read!

Until now I have been too busy fighting the smoking bans this year to bother posting on the subject of Islam. But, after catching the first two minutes of Nightline Monday, hosted by some new liberal bleeding heart, I don't know...I had to respond. Regarding the Newsweek story about a Koran that may or may not have been flushed down the toilet, used to wipe my ass, or who cares. ..the new host had this to say ..and I paraphrase "...no telling what would have happened in this country (USA) if some foreign government had announced that authorities had flushed a Bible down the toilet to humiliate prisoners. It's no wonder then that the Muslim world reacted so violently when Newsweek reported that a Koran was flushed...."

What would have happened if a Bible had been flushed? Well, first the ACLU and all of Hollywood as well as the blue state aristocracy would have applauded the act. Other than that nothing.....no killings.....no beheadings........no maimings.........nothing. And do you know why? .....Because one is a religion which teaches tolerance.....while the other teaches that killing is an accepted and expected practice for any infraction of its teachings. The latter religion is the largest and most dangerous cult propagated by a delusional and epileptic "prophet".

Here is a correlation that I came up with years ago, that I think sums it up best. Jesus is the anti-Muhammad, while Muhammad is the anti-Christ.......think about that one for awhile, and tell me how you think the end of days will come about.

John Rhyes Davies interview "...I have had the ideal background for being an actor. I have always been an outsider. I grew up in colonial Africa. And I remember in 1955, it would have to be somewhere between July the 25th when the school holiday started and September the 18th when the holidays ended. My father took me down to the quayside in Dar-Es-Salaam harbor. And he pointed out a dhow in the harbor and he said, "You see that dhow there? Twice a year it comes down from Aden. It stops here and goes down [South]. On the way down it's got boxes of machinery and goods. On the way back up it's got two or three little black boys on it. Now, those boys are slaves. And the United Nations will not let me do anything about it." The conversation went on. "Look, boy. There is not going to be a World War between Russia and the United States. The next World War will be between Islam and the West." This is 1955! I said to him, "Dad, you're nuts! The Crusades have been over for hundreds of years!" And he said, "Well, I know, but militant Islam is on the rise again. And you will see it in your lifetime." He's been dead some years now. But there's not a day that goes by that I don't think of him and think, "God, I wish you were here, just so I could tell you that you were right."

Let me say here that "white wine & Brie crowd" or "dirt munching druids" doesn't aptly describe the liberals who appease & apologize profusely for the heathen-like and sub-human behavior of some Muslims. By the way I have a number of American Muslim acquaintances who do not fall into the above generalization. But I despise the liberals in our midst who apologize for militant Islam as much as I despise militant Islam.

Monday, May 16, 2005

I wondered when that word originated.......

....I stepped in from the deck after enjoying a good stogie, to catch TFB watching the latest HBO episode of Deadwood. TFB informed me I had just walked in as the character Calamity Jane was about to take a bath, in who knows how many years. As Calamity slipped into the water she jumped back out exclaiming "...goddam...I burnt my snatch..." I didn't realize that was slang circa 1877 for female genitalia, I thought it was part of our modern day vernacular. But it makes sense... otherwise the girls in Winona, MN. would have been wearing t-shirts that said I heart my snatch.

Speaking of stogies, I saw where Arnold is having to fight the uber-nazis in California; for smoking his stogies outdoors in the Governor's tent. I loved Arnold's quote:

"This is my negotiation tent and no one is going to take that away," Schwarzenegger said in an interview with Fox News on Sunday. "Just remember one thing. They can pass all the bills they want. There's one person who has to sign it. That's me."

My god I can't believe what heathens those Californians are.....still allowing smoking outdoors...don't they know what that does to the environment? Exposing poor birds to deadly secondhand smoke....it's just ghastly.

Seriously though, I emailed Governor Arnold to let him know I will be happy to testify before the California legislature just as I did, & will continue to do here in MN. Give 'em hell Arnold........I could change my mind about voting for an immigrant for President....backbone like that is becoming rare in today's politicians.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Science is apparently only useful when it serves the politically correct agenda

On 5/10/05 KSTP 5 cited a study by the U of M (also a recipient of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation funding; a Johnson & Johnson nicotine product pharmaceutical affiliate) which stated workers in bars & restaurants have trace amounts of nicotine in the urine higher than individuals not exposed to nicotine. Of course that's only logical, but presenting only one side of the issue is inflammatory & unfair. And as the 2004 City of St. Louis Park Environmental Health Dept. tests for secondhand smoke proved; median airborne nicotine secondhand smoke is 150 times lower (safer than) OSHA permissible exposure limits (pel).

A nationally known science author is famous for saying "..the poison is in the dose....", which means the human body is exposed to trace amounts of hundreds of potentially lethal substances everyday; but in low doses the human body has an immune and tolerance level which makes that substance harmless.

Example: 1) carbon dioxide is lethal to humans at a concentration of 20%, but with every breath you and I inhale a concentration of 0.0385%; OSHA safeguards employee health regarding CO2 with a permissible exposure limit of 9,000 mg / cu. M. Below 9,000 mg / cu. M but above 0.0385% the human body suffers no ill effects from CO2, even though CO2 will be found in our urine & blood samples. 2) Stainless Steel welding workers are exposed to airborne chromium & nickel among other substances, both heavy metals are considered carcinogens. Therefore during work exposure, these workers' urine & blood samples will contain multiples higher levels of chromium & nickel than a non-welder. But since the workplace is regulated by OSHA permissible exposure limits (pel) for airborne chromium metal for instance at 1 mg / cu. M., as long as the airborne level is below the (pel) even though blood & urine samples indicate there is chromium present, it is at a harmless level.

To be fair these facts should be presented alongside the U of M research story, I'll wait to see if that is the case. The above information was submitted to Brad Sattin at KSTP as well as various local media outlets.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Syn-tactical

I just saw the KSTP interview for the first time today, thanks to Sandy. I enjoyed the interviewer's quote which said "....the American Lung Association here says no pharmaceutical monies were used to fight the the smoking ban...." (note that American Lung doesn't deny accepting pharmaceutical money).

So rest assured the multi-million dollar grants provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical founder Robert Wood Johnson) were not used to lobby for smoking bans in our state, they used money from a different source...yeah right.

The non-profits try to distance themselves from their symbiotic relationship with the pharmaceutical companies Nicotrol, Nicoderm, etc. But the facts speak differently:

More Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Nicotrol, Nicoderm, Nicoderm CQ) funding to non-profit organizations: (partial list)

2001 MN. Smoke-free coalition $824,977
2001 University of MN. $401,182
2001 American Non-Smokers Rights Foundation $971,114
2001 American Cancer Society $14,673,657
2002 American Cancer Society $3,294,002
2002 American Medical Association $2,034,859
2002 American Medical Association Foundation $7,750,288
2002 American Lung Association $2,923,061

Conflict of interest?........of course. The question is, are lawmakers unwitting participants in this scandal? Full list of grant recipients 1996-2002, figures for 2003 & 2004 not yet available.

The integrity, ideology and lobbying interests of the non-profit organizations were bought by pharmaceutical companies with the very first multi-million dollar grants by RWJF. To claim those monies weren't used to lobby in favor of smoking bans, insults the intelligence of the general public.

In the interview you saw a very brief snippet of my dialogue, and it's true the publics' perception is that these non-profits are benevolent organizations which only provide good to our community. However, in reality they are not immune to partisan politicking for the business interests of the pharmaceutical giants at the demise of the hospitality industry; if the price is right.

Our message to local government leaders is that we will continue to publicly expose the non-profits and their connection to large pharmaceutical nicotine manufacturers, and the public politicians who buy into (or are bought into) the big lie, for whatever reason. (we'll pay close attention to the next round of campaign contributions you can be sure)

If you want to talk about health and secondhand smoke, the 2004 St. Louis Park Health Dept. tests vs OSHA permissible exposure limits is the true un-tainted source.

Update: The earlier Press Release picked up by AP

PRESS RELEASEFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Audrey Silk, NYC C.L.A.S.H.,(917) 888-9317

http://www.nycclash.com/

SMOKING BAN TARGETS TO AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY: BUTT OUT.FUNDRAISING/ DONATIONS TO CEASE

DrJonz adds: KSTP covered this last night. Our hero Marcus made the news as well as his bought and paid for nemesis, Mr. Lungs.

DrJonz adds: MAWB has the video! The smoking ban is much like prohibition. In both cases, the government removes our right to choose whether or not to partake in a dangerous activity. Anti-smokers should be trying to ban alcohol too if their true concern is public safety because it is an absolute certainty that drunk drivers kill 17,000 people per year. America went down that road already and turned back. We accept certain risks in life and don't want the government to make all our decisions for us. Hopefully like prohibition, the smoking bans will be repealed as well.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Odd thing.....people who've been put out of work by the non-profits...don't want to contribute to their causes.

PRESS RELEASEFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact Audrey Silk, NYC C.L.A.S.H., (917) 888-9317

http://www.nycclash.com/

SMOKING BAN TARGETS TO AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY: BUTT OUT.FUNDRAISING/ DONATIONS TO CEASE

Coming together as a first-ever nationally formed alliance, business associations and citizens' rights groups who have had their private property rights and free will usurped, will no longer help fund the American Cancer Society, American Lung Association or the American Heart Association.

At issue is the charities' relentless pursuit of smoking bans in city and state legislatures all across the country -- ban legislation that the charities themselves very frequently help to write and then promote to the general public. Strongly noted too is that by using their tax-deductible donations for lobbying for legislation they are teetering on the edge of violating the IRS code for charitable organizations.

The ACS, for example, is currently sponsoring a radio and print blitz, urging New Jerseyans to phone their representatives demanding a local ban. And, according to their own press release, Chicago is next.

Contrary to reports pumped out by smoking ban proponents, these smoking bans decimate mom-n-pop businesses and are intended to make pariahs out of adults engaging in a legal behavior.

Clearly, businesses that hold fundraisers for, and citizens who donate to, these health organizations are giving to groups that then use that money to destroy and attack them.

"No more," says Audrey Silk, founder of NYC C.L.A.S.H. (Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment). "We will stop contributing to Big Nanny. Why do we want to donate to groups that are out to ruin our businesses and demean us as human beings?"

This misuse of funds -- funds that should be dedicated to more research and less "bureaucratic backwaters" -- is apparent to Smartmoney.com. In ranking the top 100 biggest charities in order of which "spends the public's money wisely" Smartmoney.com has the ACS coming in at #93.

Jim Avolt, a spokesman for an Ohio business group that's part of the alliance rates it even lower than that. He points out, "I feel the ACS, the ALA and the AHA should all lose their non-profit status. They were significant financial donors to the pro-ban forces at work in Toledo. And the irony of it was," Avolt continues, "they were using the same money we'd given them in donations and just handing it right over to our political opponents."

"What's more," Silk adds on behalf of furious smokers, "is that the ACS is also behind demands on state legislatures to make smokers pay more in taxes in order to legislatively control legal human behavior they don't approve of and to fund their increasingly ineffective programs. The states get millions of dollars a year through the Master Settlement Agreement -- a hidden tax already paid by smokers -- but because the states shortchange the ACS programs they want to shake us down for more!"

Incredibly, the ACS is behind taxation without representation when smokers are made to "pay up and get out."

This boycott will continue indefinitely, with more groups and private citizens expected to join in.

But it doesn't mean that members of the alliance won't continue to donate -- just not to those charities. There are thousands of worthy ones out there and they'll be the recipients of contributions instead. Charities like Make-A-Wish Foundation, Mary Crowley Medical Research Center, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the Shriners Hospital for Children are just a few of the favorites, as are people in dire medical need in each of our own local areas.

The alliance agrees that cancer and heart disease research will not suffer by donating to other same goal charities -- and maybe the trampling of our country's treasured private property rights and the right to be left alone will subside.PARTICIPANTSNational: Smokers Club, Inc.

http://www.smokersclub.com/Illinois: Illinois Smokers' Rights http://garnetdawn.tripod.com/Indiana: Indiana Amusement & Music Operators Association http://www.iamoa.org/Kentucky: Kentucky Licensed Beverage Association http://www.fightthesmokingban.com/Kentucky: Metro Louisville Hospitality Coalition http://www.fightthesmokingban.com/Massachusetts: Cambridge Citizens For Smokers' Rights http://www.ccsr.org/newsMinnesota: Smoke Out Gary (Minneapolis) http://www.smokeoutgary.org/Minnesota: Minnesotans Against Smoking Bans http://www.minnesotansagainstsmokingbans.com/Minnesota: Fight City Hall http://www.fightcityhall.net/New York: NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment http://www.nycclash.com/New York: Taverners United for Fairness
New York: American Arborist
New York: Madison County Chapter of the Independence Party
Ohio: Lakewood Hospitality Association
Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Smokers Action Network http://cantiloper.tripod.com/
Tennessee: Yes S.I.R. http://www.yessir-tn.info/
National: Private citizens

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

A funny thing happened at the forum.....

.....I had forgotten to write this little story down, but a comment from the previous post reminded me about it.

Want to hear a great story which details the hypocrisy of the anti-smoking activists? First I must preface that one of the reasons the activists say they want to ban smoking is that they are looking out for employees' health.

That having been said the following actually happened at the last MN. House Committee hearing approx. 3/15/2005.

One of the MN. House members proposed an amendment to the proposed smoking ban bill HF405 authored by Meslow & Latz, the amendment would allow retail tobacco stores to allow smoking. The House member asked the bill's author Meslow or Latz, I don't remember which, if he wouldn't be concerned about employee health in allowing the tobacco stores to continue smoking even if the bars & restaurants were forced to go smoke-free. Meslow / Latz answer: "No I wouldn't be concerned about the employee being exposed to secondhand smoke, because they knew what they were getting into when they decided to work at a tobacco shop."

Hmmmmm.....sort of like the employee or the customer of a bar or restaurant who knew they were entering a private establishment which allowed smoking?

Maybe now you can see why a smoking ban didn't pass nor is ever likely to pass at the state; even the authors don't really believe the talking points. Plus there is that pesky data from the city of St. Louis Park 2004.

Number one reason local government......

......doesn't need to regulate (ban) secondhand smoke in bars & restaurants.

Because OSHA already does.

0.0005g/cu. M. is the OSHA permissible exposure limit (PEL) of nicotine (secondhand smoke)

0.0000033g/cu. M is the actual median level of nicotine (secondhand smoke) measured by St. Louis Park, MN. Environmental Health Department in 2004.

Secondhand smoke in bars & restaurants is 150 times safer than OSHA permissible exposure limits. Isn't it good to know our MN. State Senate & House members understand math even as Hennepin, Ramsey, Mpls., St. Paul, & Bloomington fail to comprehend basic mathematics.

I'm curious to know when our State legislators are going to override the 2 counties & 3 cities above. Afterall the smoking ban ordinances deplete the state tax revenue of tobacco tax dollars. Seems to me if Hennepin County needs permission to use tax revenues for a stadium, they also need state permission to eliminate state taxes collected on tobacco products which used to be sold at the bars before the bans.

Hmmm. ....need any help writing that bill Senate & House members?

Friday, May 06, 2005

How perceptive are you........

........in noticing the minute details in your surroundings. Here is an interesting test.

(it helps to have speakers on)

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Proof that.......

........if you repeat a lie enough times it becomes fact.

(Al) Gore, who boasted in a CNN interview he "took the initiative in creating the Internet," was only 21 when the Internet was born out of a Pentagon project.

Our pal Al is receiving a lifetime achievement award, for ..........saying he created the internet......I guess.

I want to go on record as saying I created the blogosphere, sorry Hugh let's not get too bogged down in the facts, they always get in the way of politics.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Take me out to the incinerator.........

.......buy me a gas mask, & cracker jacks, I don't care cause I'm headed to Ramsey estabs.

First Ring points out the obvious overlooked Henn. Co. stadium issue:

The site would place the stadium next to the city's garbage burner, meaning the Twins will have moved from the Hump to the Dump. The open-air stadium would only highlight the location as fans could sample the smells of hot dogs, peanuts, and human waste. A seventh-inning wretch might be required but isn't exactly what you bring the kiddies down to see.

Ahh...the sweet smell of subsidized billionaires in the morning.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Benjamin Franklin 1759.......

"They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Calling all health nazis.....

........a fat nation turns its bloated stomachs to you.........when will you lobby for legislation so that nobody is forced to endure such insanity? Save us!....Save us!.........if even one life is saved, it will be worth it.

Dubbed the Beer Barrel Belly Buster, the burger comes with 10.5 pounds of ground beef, 25 slices of cheese, a head of lettuce, three tomatoes, two onions, a cup-and-a-half each of mayonnaise, relish, ketchup, mustard and banana peppers - and a bun.

It costs $30

Update: According to RWJF, Am. Lung., Am. Cancer Society, AMA, etc. there are no companies offering any multi-million dollar grants to compel them to lobby for such desperately needed legislation. (I wouldn't write it off in the future though; the non-profits have clearly demonstrated that their credibility is for sale).

Here's the joke Bush should have......

.....opened with at the correspondents' dinner.

Question: How do you tell the difference between a Democrat, a Republican and a Southern Republican?

The answer can be found by posing the following question:

You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children. Suddenly, a dangerous looking man with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you, screams obscenities, raises the knife, and charges. You are carrying a Glock 40, and you are an expert shot. You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family.

What do you do?

Democrat's Answer: Well, that's not enough information to answer the question! Does the man look poor or oppressed? Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack? Could we run away? What does my wife think? What about the kids? Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand? What does the law say about this situation? Does the Glock have appropriate safety built into it? Why am I carrying a loaded gun anyway, and what kind message does this send to society and to my children? Is it possible he'd be happy with just killing me? Does he definitely want to kill me, or would he be content just to wound me? If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me? Should I call 9-1-1? Why is this street so deserted? We need to raise taxes, have a paint and weed day and make this a happier, healthier street that would discourage such behavior. This is all so confusing! I need to debate this with some friends for a few days and try to come to a consensus.

Republican's Answer: BANG!

Southern Republican's Answer:BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! click..... (sounds of reloading)BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! click.

Daughter's voice, "Nice grouping, Daddy! Were those the Winchester Silver Tips??"

Monday, May 02, 2005

If you or a loved one suffered damage......

...from alternative nicotine products call Dewey, Cheatum & Howe.

We've all seen the ads, nationwide attorneys have been advertising to get users of now banned drugs Vioxx, Bextra, etc. to come forward for huge cash awards.

I wish to call attention to the following sentence from:

Mark C. Taylor, MD,. FRCSCA Reflection On Alternative Nicotine Delivery SystemsPhysicians for a Smoke-Free Canada

Similarly, alternative nicotine products developed by the pharmaceutical industry cannot be assumed to be benign, in either their current or future forms.

This information was presented in a symposium circa 1997 as advice to the pharmaceutical and medical industry on how to profit from alternative nicotine products, once smoking bans were in place.

The significance is that the medical & pharmaceutical industry is admitting the hazards of these alternative nicotine drugs. (future huge cash awards, jurors look what these evil companies knowingly did to my client).

The extra payoff is that the non-profit organizations Am. Lung, Am. Cancer Society, Am. Heart Assoc., Robert Wood Johnson Foundation etc. also signed on as future defendants and responsible parties when they actively started lobbying for the smoking bans to prosper the alternative nicotine products. (ka-ching)

Lawyers of America that was a freebie from me to you. Since I no longer am employable as a Smokeeter salesman post smoking ban, I am open to some show of financial appreciation.

You know how to reach me, www.fightcityhall.net

The hypocrisy of.....

......NYC mayor Bloomberg. "Ban as I say.............no we won't pay."

Even Bloomberg knows secondhand smoke does not cause cancer.

Captain Fishsticks however, has the real story, about secondhand smoke damage.

I hope the am. lung, & am. cancer society don't find out about this.

This just in......

.....no matter how many personal freedoms the health nazis take away......"No One Here Gets Out Alive "...even someone who eats right, exercises, and doesn't smoke.... the health nazis may not really believe they will stop the inevitable......but rather; have a profit motive......(nah, that's just too cynical to believe).

Taking it to the streets....

I received an email from a New York City organization which is planning a grass roots effort to help citizens re-think donating to "supposed" non-profit health organizations.

NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment (NYC C.L.A.S.H.) is inviting you to join in the first ever nationwide and cooperative effort, with similarly affected groups and individuals, in applying pressure on the American Cancer Society, American Lung Association and the American Heart Association to rethink their involvement in lobbying for legislation and policies that threaten your livelihoods, private property rights, and civil liberties.

Following in the footsteps of Toledo's Citizens for Common Sense -- but on a grander scale and as a united front -- we intend to call for a boycott in fundraising for, or contributions to, these three organizations who use their strength to push for smoking bans/intrusive legislation in your restaurant or bar and using your own money to do it!

In the very words of one leader of the Toledo group, printed on September 24, 2004 in the Toledo Blade:"Why do we want to contribute to a group of people that's trying to destroy our businesses, trying to tear us apart? Why should we donate to them to increase their funds to attack us? It doesn't make sense."

A prime example of their antics, and also shameless violation of the IRS code that states charitable organizations may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities, is taking place right now in New Jersey. The ACS is waging an ugly campaign in print and on radio to get a state-wide smoking ban passed by asking the public to contact the governor. They've bypassed the usual targets of their accusation -- that anyone in the hospitality industry that opposes smoking bans must be a "front for Big Tobacco" -- and have instead laid that accusation on the NJ state legislators! Lying to the public in order to make the legislators "prove" they aren't influenced by the demonized industry by passing the law is despicable behavior by nothing other than a bunch of bullies. That's not even all of it. The entire ad drips of disgust for anyone who doesn't agree with them.

Our press release will say the same as expressed here, with the greatest of decorum. And for those of you wondering and concerned about how it will look to say you will no longer fundraise for, or donate to, these organizations we fully intend to state that contributions will be redirected to any of the other thousands of worthy charitable organizations (i.e. Make a Wish Foundation) or, for instance, directly to your local hospital's cancer research where you know it goes directly into research and not to pay the salaries or propaganda campaigns of the other three who spend little of their take on actual research.

I wish NYC CLASH the best of luck, and of course will help them in any way I can. I hope everyone who reads this post will also in the future rethink their contributions. Non-profit organizations which illegally lobby our lawmakers for the elimination of industry & jobs at the behest of the pharmaceutical industry are neither looking out for your health or welfare.

Blame Canada

Evidence that the pharmaceutical industry has strategically planned for implementation of smoking bans; to increase sales of their nicotine delivery systems years in advance.

A Reflection On Alternative Nicotine Delivery SystemsMark C. Taylor, MD,. FRCSCPhysicians for a Smoke-Free Canada.

...trend was exemplified by a conference held in Toronto in early 1997.

"unless we establish an aggressive ......strategy that promotes the use of alternative nicotine delivery products our campaign may not achieve our goal...."

-Initiatives to reduce smoking opportunities through bans on smoking in public and work places ....

-The de-legitimization of tobacco and smoking...

Pharmaceutical companies are urged to be more aggressive marketers. "I think it important that drug manufacturers, who will profit from less cigarette sales, pursue this ... and that they lift any voluntary restraints they have from .........attacking the tobacco industry."

To expand the availability of new delivery systems for nicotine, they aresuggesting changes by government regulators, nicotine product manufacturers...

While decided preferable to tobacco smoking, pure nicotine ingestion cannot be considered to be innocuous.

Similarly, alternative nicotine products developed by the pharmaceutical industry cannot be assumed to be benign, in either their current or future forms.

...a comprehensive tobacco use reduction strategy using established policy tools (i.e. total .... ban, dramatic price increases, access restrictions ......) and by developing new policy tools (i.e. changed legal status of tobacco, reduced availability of tobacco products).

Shifting smokers to new nicotine products will divert funds theoretically available to campaigns to reduce tobacco use into a for-profit market of alternative nicotine delivery products.

Between 1991 and 1993, new prescriptions for nicotine patches rose from 0 to over 600,000. That is, almost 10% of Canadian smokers were recruited to try the patch in the second year of its marketing. Pharmaceutical manufacturers could not advertise the patch directly to consumers, although it was directly advertised to physicians and promoted to the general public through news and information media. .... The boom market did not last long (by 1994 new prescriptions fell to 200,000), but not before one patch manufacturer was penalized for charging excessive prices for the product....

The preceding excerpts were taken from an industry symposium, designed to instruct the pharmaceutical industry how to profit from their alternative nicotine delivery systems......while eliminating tobacco usage via government control.

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