Sunday, March 19, 2006


Posted by Craig Westover | 3:25 PM |  

Mrs. Paul and I went to see V for Vendetta yesterday. Thought-provoking for me; plenty of fireballs for Mrs. Paul.

This is the logo of the totalitarian government ruling Britain in the year 2020, a government reminiscent of the Big Brother government in Orwell’s 1984 that spread lies and false fears to control the population.

I thought that logo looked familiar. Coincidence?

BTW -- While pulling the logo, I chanced upon this bit of hypocrisy from our friend Bob over at the ALAMN. In response to a column in the Pioneer Press, Bob wrote --
Cigar-chomping columnist and radio talker Joe Soucheray is calling St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman (a smoking ban supporter) a "hypocrite." The mayor's offense? Being seen smoking a cigar in the back room of a tobacco shop. Never mind that fact that no ordinances or laws were broken, and the ordinance the mayor signed won't begin until March 31, 2006. A weak effort from a usually good columnist. Minnesota's going smokefree, Joe, so you might as well stop your whining now.
Hold on there, Bob. I thought the rationale for the smoking ban was that secondhand smoke kills non-smokers, there is no safe level of secondhand smoke, and the purpose of the smoking ban was protecting non-smokers, especially bar and restaurant employees from the dangers of secondhand smoke. That being the case, whether the law was in effect or not, Mayor Coleman, by your definition, was with wanton disregard killing people (no safe level). And you’re willing to excuse that because it's not illegal?

I wondered why Bob didn’t comment when I wrote --
Remember, the premise of the smoking ban was not to protect smokers from themselves, but to protect others from the deadly effects of secondhand smoke. There is no safe level of secondhand smoke we were told. Therefore, when people like Coleman and Thune light up, because they KNOW secondhand smoke kills people and that no level of secondhand smoke is safe, they do so with absolute disdain and disregard for the safety of others. No excuse. Their habit, or in Coleman’s case simple desire for a good cigar, is more important to them than the lives of those around them.

Of course, that is an over stated exaggeration, but that is what they and ban supporters said in testimony before council, commission, and legislative committees. By their own definition, Thune and Coleman are killing others. And that others choose to be around them when they are smoking doesn't matter. Choice is not a consideration. Sorry, guys, can’t have it both ways.
So which way is it, Bob? Is secondhand smoke not as deadly as you claim it is? Or is it alright to spew secondhand smoke as long as it's legal and people choose to be around it? Or is it simply as the film's totalitarian government (metaphorically) declares "Britian must prevail" so "quit whining about it"?