More Denormalisation

Smokers are the pariahs of society. What was once frowned upon –  the treatment of people as “the other”, lesser beings, second class citizens, what have you, because of their colour of their skin, genetic makeup, religious belief or whatever, is okay when practised upon those who choose to breathe the fumes of burning leaves.

We see the usual tobacco control nonsense trotted out again today –  completely unchallenged by the BBC.

Smokers who light up outside three hospitals in north Wales will trigger an alarm and loudspeaker message telling them to stop.

The warnings have been installed at the main entrances and maternity units of Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor, Glan Clwyd in Bodelwyddan and Wrexham Maelor.

Even lighting a match will set-off the bilingual message.

Never mind that people who are in hospital –  or even visiting, might be under extreme stress and have a need for the calming effect of that cigarette. No, tobacco control must out and we are treated to the usual horrific figures telling us how lethal it is:

He added: “It is estimated that around 1,300 deaths are caused every year across north Wales by smoking and it is the number one cause of avoidable premature death and ill health in Wales.

Estimated –  i.e. guessed, made up, fabricated, not real. These are not actual verifiable figures associating death directly to the burning of tobacco. Indeed, the way that the NHS divvies up its figures is criminal. And, again, I remark that the BBC simply publishes this propaganda without a hint of gainsay, without a microbe of challenge.

So, now, those who smoke are to be publicly humiliated by hectoring electronic voices. George Orwell tried to warn us, but the warnings went unheeded. We now have the NuPuritans seeking to run our lives for us and to decide whether we should have the healthcare we have paid for denied because we do not conform to the decreed lifestyle diktats:

We are committed to our comprehensive tobacco strategy and action plan which includes smoking cessation support for pre-operative patients, pregnant women and their partners and for people with mental health needs or chronic health conditions.

Yup, that’s right, smoking cessation before you get your operation. That the ailment has nothing whatever to do with smoking is neither here nor there, you must stop before you go under the knife.

All health boards in Wales have been asked by the Welsh government to reduce the number of people who smoke from 24% to 16% by 2020, therefore it is clear to see why reducing the number of smokers is one of our top priorities.

Or in English; to interfere in the private lives and lifestyle decisions of the people they serve.

Once again we see the use of the term “unacceptable” being rolled out. These people always use that word to describe something of which they disapprove. What is unacceptable is the constant interfering in our lifestyle choices by self-appointed busybodies who are paid to provide a healthcare system, not to lecture us and not to deny surgery on the basis of junk science and the temperance agenda.


12 comments for “More Denormalisation

  1. P T Barnum
    January 5, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    So amongst their prime targets are “people with mental health needs”?

    Luverly. The ratio of smokers to non-smokers in the mentally unwell population is the reverse of that in the general population. No doubt someone somewhere has a grant to prove that smoking causes schizophrenia or manic depression. Meanwhile they will work to drive from their doors those who have struggled to ask for or get access to medical care for mental illness. Don’t be a crazy smoker in North Wales….

  2. Voice of Reason
    January 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Caveat: I am a smoker, and have been for 37 years.

    However, the advice to quit before surgery is a good one. Smokers have a much harder time under anesthesia, and a harder time coming out of it.

    • January 5, 2012 at 4:13 pm

      Advice is fine – let people know about the risks. Then let them make their own decisions. Withholding surgery is not doing that at all, is it?

    • January 5, 2012 at 9:54 pm

      I’ve recuperated from surgery quickly, and I’m a smoker. There are many similar stories of smokers healing quicker than non-smokers. Smokers having an increased number of platelets to help clotting.

      I was never told that I had a problem under or coming out of anaesthesia.

      I agree with Longrider — present the risks then let the patient make his own decision.

  3. January 5, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    He added: β€œIt is estimated that around 1,300 deaths are caused every year across north Wales by smoking and it is the number one cause of avoidable premature death and ill health in Wales.

    My consistent answer to this kind of blatant propaganda is – NAME ONE.

  4. ivan
    January 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    The big problem is that the left see Orwell’s writing as a handbook they should follow for total control of everyone but themselves.

  5. January 5, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    I saw a poll some years ago saying more parents would be upset if they found their child had smoked than if their child had cheated in school.
    Bodily vices trump vices of character these days, I guess. No surprise there.

    • January 5, 2012 at 9:57 pm

      Shows why we’re in the mess we’re in as a nation, doesn’t it?

      Our morals have gone down the plughole. ‘Health’ is everything.

  6. Able
    January 5, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    Sorry Voice of Reason but I have to disagree. as a nurse of some years, and having worked for some time in both surgical and recovery wards my personal (admittedly anecdotal) opinion is that there is little difference as groups between smokers and non-smokers experience of, and recovery from, anaesthesia.

    The ‘advice’ given is like almost all today, based on ‘research’ where the conclusion is decided long before any actual evidence is gathered. Check some of this alleged research and most is based on the subjective judgements, as opposed to actual facts, of for example anaesthetists (who are of course immune to the pressure to agree with the ‘smoking is bad’ meme).

    One piece of personal experience that is never mentioned is the fact that smokers, who give up prior to surgery, have a poorer experience. Oh, and there is significant evidence that not only rates of recovery, but lower analgesic demand for those who continue to smoke. You’ll definitely never see that in any ‘advice’ given though.

  7. January 6, 2012 at 1:06 am

    On the subject of enforcemnt, my local cash strapped hospital saw fit recently to erect a number of large billboards proclaiming this to be a “no-smoke site including the grounds and driveways”.

    No it isn’t, it is publicly owned and their administrators cannot enforce a law that does not exist just as councils cannot order residents not to smoke in their private social housing (yet). What they can (and do) is enforce no on-site smoking on their own employees and suppliers but that is contractual.

    • January 7, 2012 at 7:10 am

      Perhaps a ‘smoke-athon’ would bring that home to them… ? πŸ™‚

  8. sovereigntea
    January 7, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Whilst standing outside casualty smoking in the open air but under the “no smoking” sign a member of staff approached and reprimanded me in hectoring tones. I pointed out that as a corporate (officer) employee she had no standing in this matter and no more authority to nag me a living breathing man of flesh and blood (SOVEREIGN) than a lamp post.

    We are not bound by the rules of dead incorporated entities such as an NHS trust unless we CONSENT to abide by their rules or for that matter the statutes of any other incorporated body or society that we do not belong to.

    She went away I continued to smoke in peace.

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