Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Semi-Daily Divider

  • Why are we still blathering about the smoking ban? Because as it stands now, it doesn't make any sense. Don't get me wrong; I'm in favor of the ban. But to apply something that is so controversial in such a piecemeal way is beyond me. You can't smoke in Minneapolis, you can't smoke in Hennepin County, you can't smoke in St. Paul and Ramsey County (but you can if you know where to go). I've said it before and I'll say it again: Go big or go home. This deal needs to be metro- or state-wide in order to work effectively.
  • Lil Normie Coleman has decided to introduce a stem cell bill in the Senate that would overturn Bush's stance on the subject. His reasoning: "We don't want to be the party that's anti-science." Too late, buddy.
  • In other Congressional news, my friend and yours Rep. Mark Kennedy (and 2006 Senate contender) has decided to vote for the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA). Why does this matter? Well, kids, let me tell you a story about western Minnesota and sugar beets. As it turns out - and I did not know this until recently - the western part of the state is filled with sugar beet farmers, whose produce becomes the sugar we enjoy so much in our sweet-tooth society. Approving CAFTA will allow cheaper foreign sugar (from Central and South American countries) to enter the market freely, and thus the sugar beet farmers will face some very inexpensive competition. Whether this will actually bankrupt the sugar beet farmers, I don't know. I'm no economist. The vote will be important come election time, when Kennedy is trying to win rural counties.
  • The University of Minnesota's solar car finished 2nd in a 2,500-mile race. Boy oh boy, I can't wait to get my hands on one of those babies...
  • Your Pie-Eyed Correspondents are plenty gifted and talented, and we didn't even need extra money from the state.

8 comments:

American Novelist said...

If smoking is such a bad thing, then be intellectually honest and make tobacco illegal.

I don't smoke and I oppose the ban, because it is big government sticking its fat nose where it does not belong.

PiedPiper said...

Sure I can be intellectually honest and say "Let's make tobacco illegal." That, of course, is not politically pragmatic at this time, particularly because of the Big Tobacco lobby and their donations to our nation's political parties, Republican more so that Democrat.

I also think that public health and safety is a place where government is and has always been entitled to "stick" its "fat nose."

xtrachromosomeconservative said...

Advocating a smoking ban, Andy, you are becoming the street corner tyrant. Why not allow reastuarants and bars ban smoking if they so choose? It is a way to differentiate themselves and better cater to their market. Or further, consumers can make decisions on whether or not to go to restaurant on the basis of whether or not it is smoking. There should be choices available to us other than whether or not to have an abortion, and heck, that is only available to women.

patchonmyass said...

Oh Tricky Dick, you never seem to amaze...As a smoking fanatic, I too have to say I support smoking bans. It's one thing for me to have the freedom to choose to smoke, it's another to affect others' health indirectly. All in all, let's get real MSP's smoking ban in a nutshell - no direct effect on smokers - it's patio season.

xtrachromosomeconservative said...

You mention the freedom to choose, which is exactly that which people have exercised when they enter a private establishment. They have wittingly chosen to be in a smoking environment, or in they case where they decline to patronize a private drinking or dining establishment because it permits smoking for one that does not permit smoking. Under the logic of protecting people from the indirect harm of smokers, should we ban smoking in private homes. Afterall, people do visit other people's homes, even in this day and age. If Andy were to have a smoke in the comfort of his living room (though, I find this to be an ugly habit) would he not be posing a health threat to those who choose to share his company? And this business about the patio season, please, you are talking about Minnesota, land of the worlds worst weather, 9 months of frigid cold punctuated by 3 months of mosquitoes, rain, and the occasional ray of sun.

PiedPiper said...

You miss my point completely, Xtra. I'm not advocating for a ban on smoking in private residences. Nor a ban on smoking outdoors or anywhere it doesn't cause a health risk and act as a nauseating nuisance to the general public. All I'm saying (or what I was originally saying before words got twisted) is that we either need a metro-wide smoking ban or no smoking ban at all. It doesn't make sense to do it piecemeal because that's what hurts small businesses. If there's no smoking anywhere in the metro area, than no places will be severly hurt. If there's smoking everywhere, than it's the same thing for everyone.

And you're lucky I don't wash your mouth out with soap the way you spew trash about Minnesota!

xtrachromosomeconservative said...

well I do agree with you as regards the idiocy of piecemeal implementation. Minnesota deserves a hearty trashing.

Anonymous said...

More on CAFTA fall out for Kennedy: http://www.fromtheroots.org