30 Jan 2009

The Road to Serfdom: CA City Bans Smoking In Your Own Car

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I am getting old enough so that the “slippery slope” warnings against government intrusions now have extra validity for me, because I actually lived through this stuff. I vividly remember when the government started cracking down on cigarettes in the 1990s, that “right-wingers” warned, “What’s next? Are they going to start regulating fatty foods? Once they ban smoking in restaurants, will they ban it in your house?” And of course the critics laughed and scorned such scare tactics, when all they were trying to do was save lives from an awful product.

Well, here’s a story about politicians wanting to tax soda to help you lose weight. (Oh, I guess they’ll spend the revenues that come in, but that’s just a minor detail. The point is, they’re here to help you.)

But check this out (HT2LRC):

Belmont is set to make history by becoming the first city in the nation to ban smoking on its streets and almost everywhere else.

The Belmont City Council voted unanimously last night to pursue a strict law that will prohibit smoking anywhere in the city except for single-family detached residences. Smoking on the street, in a park and even in one’s car will become illegal and police would have the option of handing out tickets if they catch someone.

The actual language of the law still needs to be drafted and will likely come back to the council either in December or early next year.

“We have a tremendous opportunity here. We need to pass as stringent a law as we can, I would like to make it illegal,” said Councilman Dave Warden. “What if every city did this, image how many lives would be saved? If we can do one little thing here at this level it will matter.”

The really sad thing is (for those of you who are also parents), our kids won’t know that this is unusual. Just like they will think there were always soliders with M-16s patrolling the airport.

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