Sunday Morning Book Thread 10-06-2019 | Main | The Pinch-Faced Scolds Of The Left: Never Happy, Always Angry, And Undoubtedly Unpleasant To Be Around
October 06, 2019

Hey Big Government, Here's A Novel idea: Mind Your Own Damned Business

Try fixing the potholes and the porous borders and try to get a handle on your out-of-control spending and the obscene lawlessness among your law enforcement agencies. When you are done with that there is a long list of other significant issues that need to be addressed. And then maybe you get to worry about what private citizens do to themselves.

But what is most frustrating about the current brouhaha about vaping and e-cigarettes is the focus of the discussion on whether they are harmful or beneficial. That's not the point! The issue is clear; does the government get to control our private activities and behavior?

I think cigarette smoking is dumb, so I don't do it. I have no interest in vaping, so I don't do it. But if you want to do it? Have at it! As long as you are responsible for the consequences of your behavior, why is it my or the government's business?

The fact that these behaviors are far less destructive than cigarette smoking and can assist people in quitting smoking is nice...really nice! But once again, as long as there is no deleterious effect on society, why should we care? Sure, you can argue that the health effects cost us money, but that is what health insurance is for. Charge more for smokers and vapers (even though the data are sparse) if you feel like it.

Setting the Record Straight on Vaping

There’s a lot to unpack from this recent piece in The Federalist written by my friend and former White House advisor, Katy Talento, which endorses government plans to limit access to e-cigarette devices and flavors. I’ll take her main arguments — which are the ones most commonly made to support vaping bans — one at a time.

Vaping Is Just as Bad as Smoking

Katy belittles the idea that vaping is a public health win. Yet harm reduction is a valid goal, and vaping has helped millions quit traditional, combustible cigarettes. This is in part because vaping allows people to continue to mimic the physical act of smoking (which is particularly important to women) but with a device that delivers the nicotine in a safer, non-carcinogenic way.

Don’t take my word for it. Consider the positions of Public Health England, the Royal College of Physicians, and Cancer Research U.K., all of which endorse e-cigarettes as an effective smoking cessation tool. A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine confirms the efficacy of these devices, finding that smokers who used e-cigarettes were twice as likely as those who used other smoking cessation tools to successfully quit smoking. And these public health organizations estimate that vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking. Even the FDA admits that vaping is safer than traditional smoking.

That's all great, and it exposes the Left's mania about control of every facet of our lives, except of course killing babies. But conspicuous in its absence is a substantive discussion of free will, of freedom from interference by the government, of liberty to make our own decisions.

Oh...the article is from The National Review, and it is a morass of statist, big-government love. That the author stumbled onto the correct conclusion seems to be coincidence. I wonder what William F. Buckley would have said?


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posted by CBD at 12:15 PM

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