Sell up quick. Take the money and run.
This is especially the case if you run a pub, club, restaurant, cafe, hotel or B&B. You know those customers who still visit even though they have to go outside to smoke?
Well, your councillors want to ban them from smoking outside your premises too. They have the full backing of ASH in this absolute ban on your customers venturing anywhere near your business.
Don't believe it will affect your business? Hate smokers anyway, and would be glad to see them banned from the town entirely? In that case, sit tight. In fact, buy up the businesses that are selling because you know, don't you, that a mysterious army of antismokers will flock to your town once the smokers are gone. Just as they did with the pubs.
All I can tell you is one smoker's experience. Before the ban I made use of cafes and restaurants and was in the pub at least once a week. I'd shop in the high street, have lunch in a cafe, and call in for a beer on the way home.
Now I shop in the supermarket or on the internet. I visit the town when I have to, to use the bank or post office and that's it. Straight there, straight back. I don't often even take my tobacco with me because even though smoking on the street isn't yet banned here it's just too much bother finding somewhere to smoke. Since I can't smoke with a beer or even a coffee, it's better to go home or call in at a friend's house on the way home.
My weekly pub visits are now annual visits and I don't care if I miss one. As for cafes and restaurants, I have not been in either since the ban. It's not just the pubs, you know. Shops are closing here, no matter what they sell, because the town is such an unwelcoming place for twenty percent of their customers that we are just not going there any more.
So, Stony Stratford, I encourage you to ban smoking entirely. Go on. Do it. The absolute destruction of the economy of one small town is the only way to get the point across, and you, Stony Stratford, are chosen to take the hit.
Not by smokers. We didn't choose any of this. I'm sure you'll blame us as the antismokers did when pubs closed. "It's the smokers' fault. They refused to keep supporting the pubs we banned them from, so it's all their fault the pubs died." Believe it if you want to. I don't care. It's your business and you are perfectly entitled to make clear that you don't want smokers spending money in it. You can even whine about us not supporting you after you've banned us if you want. You'll still be bust. We'll still be smoking. We'll still buy stuff, just not from you. The choice is yours.
Apparently Stony Stratford has some tourist industry. It lays claim to the origin of the 'cock and bull story', which does seem somehow fitting. However, pubs and the like cannot survive on a few summer weeks of trade. Once the regular customers go, the pubs go, and when the tourists arrive and find more and more premises boarded up, they stop coming too.
I know, I know, the smokophobes always respond with "When you smokers are banned, we antismokers will have clean diesel fumes to breathe and our businesses will thrive." Because it's only the smokers who will be affected. Smokers go around in little smoky groups. They don't have families or social groups in which some smoke and some don't. So it's just that twenty percent, nobody else, right?
Amanda Sandford, spokeswoman for Action on Smoking and Health, today praised the proposed ban.
Remember that name, Stony Stratford businesses.
‘Passive smoking is very unpleasant and we are already seeing the health benefits of the indoors ban with a fall in heart and lung disease.
This is an outright lie. Antismokers believe it because they want to and I say let them. Let them close all their local businesses. I don't care.
‘An unintended consequence of the indoor smoking ban is that more smokers are on the streets dropping litter and this ban would prevent that.
Unintended? It was an obvious consequence which even a retarded amoeba could have predicted. It was not unintended. It was a deliberate maneouver to the next stage. The next 'unintended consequence' will be parents smoking at home all the time and kippering the cheeeldren. That, also, is not unintended.
‘We have heard of councils banning smoking on play parks and beaches but this would be the first blanket ban on smoking in Britain.’
Bring it on. Turn that place into a ghost town. Send every business bankrupt. Show the rest of the country what such a ban really means.
Stony Stratfod is not New York. It does not have the mass of industry New York has. It does not have so much commerce that it's really difficult to move away or shop elsewhere. The New York public have ignored the outdoor ban and nobody is enforcing it. Who imagines that this will happen in Stony Stratford? There are smokophobes oiling up their cricket bats as I type.
I doubt the council will do it but I really, really hope they do.
Smokophobes, I know you don't believe a word of this and that's okay. I don't want you to believe it. I want you to invest in the smokefree land of Stony Stratford with every penny you can borrow. It will be a great success, you will live entirely smoke free and you'll never get cancer, asthma or any lung disease and you'll never die. Here is your chance to create an entirely smoke-free-town where not a whiff of tobacco smoke will ever be smelled. Go for it, it might be your only chance at Utopia.
For those who put business success above personal prejuduce, sell up quick. Before the story gets too widely known.
Best get the for-sale sign up tomorrow, because this story is making the rounds pretty fast now.