The Piercing Truth

This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes

May 4, 2008

How Far is Too Far?

Since anti-smoking groups have changed their tactics and made smoking a matter of public safety they've been able to make incredible gains in reducing the amount of smoking in "public" places. Of course "public" now includes private businesses.

Regardless of whether or not you prefer smoke free bars and restaurants, the anti-smoking movement and their relentless pursuit of "public safety" should concern you. No one has ever been forced to frequent a smoke-filled establishment and no one has ever been forced to work in a smoke-filled environment.

Anti-smoking groups have created an excuse for government to quite literally stick their legislative noses into the private affairs of businesses who are abiding by the law. That's where Councilor Cadigan comes into this little post. According to Saturday's Albuquerque Journal, Councilor Cadigan has decided to take up for an unnamed business that has taken exception to Monte's cigar club (Subscription).
A little disclaimer here... we are not a smoker per se. We have been known to indulge in an occasional cigar from time to time but the number of cigars put to the fire in any given year could be counted on the fingers of one hand. We also weren't too thrilled with the Dee Johnson Indoor Air Act - not because it required restaurants and bars to prohibit smoking, but because it set a dangerous precedent for government interference in private establishments.
(End Sidebar)
The Journal reports that despite being cleared by the fire marshall, other businesses have complained about being able to smell (presumably) cigar smoke from the adjacent cigar club. Councilor Cadigan has proposed a city ordinance that would prohibit smoking in cigar shops. Currently cigar shops are exempt from the smoking regulations.

Despite the exemption, Monte's has been fitted with a specialized ventilation system to minimize aromatic invasion. That doesn't seem to be enough for the adjacent business so Cyrano Cadigan is extending his prodigious governmental nose into the dispute.

Our question is how far is this thing going to go? It's now illegal for businesses to allow smoking in their private establishments. What the intrepid councilor would like to do is prevent shops that sell cigars from allowing patrons to smoke them there. That would be like prohibiting patrons of bars from consuming their purchases on site.

More importantly, government is now inserting itself in almost every facet of our lives. They're not only protecting us from external threats and criminals, they've taken it upon themselves to protect us from ourselves.

Like it or not, smoking is a legal activity. Just because you can smell a cigar doesn't mean that you are being exposed to hazardous carcinogens or that your health is in any jeopardy. Besides, we don't believe that politicians should be the arbiters of science and health related safety.

We ask ourselves how far is too far? Our answer is that we've gone too far a long time ago. Government should stay out of our lives and businesses. The Monte's case shouldn't involve the Albuquerque City Council in the first place and it's terrifying that councilors believe that they should insert themselves into a olfactory offense. What's next, bad cologne?


ColoMichelle said...

I agree in principal with your overall premise in this posting but to your statement that "no one has ever been forced to work in a smoke-filled environment." - I could not disagree more.

When I joined the working world in the late 70s virtually EVERY workplace was smoke filled and no one gave a damn about the fact that I was asthmatic. Little things like paying the rent and eating did indeed FORCE me to work in those environments.

Laws restricting smoking were VERY necessary to protect the health of nonsmokers and I for one am thankful they now exist.

Anonymous said...

When I was a kid, we used names like sissies, or wienies to describe our spoiled friends. They were always doing things without any concern for others. They had habits of throwing tantrums when they didn’t have their own ways. They were manipulators of even their own mommies; all they did was whine if they didn’t like something. When they grew up, they didn’t pay for their own college educations, but daddy and mommy took care of it for them. They didn’t understand what it was to work for something and then have it taken from them, on demand by some insensitive person that doesn’t have a clue. It was a breath of fresh air when I tried out for my middle school football team (a contact sport), and the coach instructed the whole unit not to take the events we did on the practice field home to tell their mommies. In his wisdom, I think he knew someone would not understand the sport and sure enough, some mommy would try to change the standards of the game by complaining to the principal saying the coach was too hard on her “little Johnnie.” In my opinion, Counselor Cadigan resembles a lot of these childhood traits.

Even when you study Nazi Germany, you come to realize they were very much like some of the people sitting in the seats of our own government. The similarities are profound. They too approached the masses with a false cloak of protection. Their agenda was different from what they were actually telling its citizens. Take for instance the Cigar store question. If our government were truly interested in the issue of smoking being related to health (or whether someone even smells smoke), then they would have written legislation to make it illegal to even buy tobacco products in this city, or state. Instead, they have allowed Casinos, Cigar bars, smoking out doors, and of coarse in the comfort of our own homes (unless it’s an apartment that you rent, and somebody next door whines). Some businesses apparently have more “elite” standards than those required to adhere to the “Dee Johnson indoor no-smoking act.” I can hardly believe it is illegal for people to smoke inside of venues such as bars while relaxing and sipping on a beverage.

I didn’t begin smoking until Counselor Cadigan let us know that he doesn’t care for the “smokers” of this great community. I don’t think he is the kind to even cast a shadow on the doors of a building that now have restrictions on the peoples right to smoke. I started smoking cigars on occasion. I realized that the “cologne” effect when I was standing next to someone in a public place, made some people make funny faces. What I think we aught to do is puff on a stogy before we walk into a public place and act cordial to the people around us. It is obvious that some of our legislators, because of their own agendas, have no desire to listen to the smokers of our community, and this would, if for no other reason, educate some that “we the people” have rights, and live in this same country that claims to allow equal liberty to all its citizens.

Anonymous said...


minarchynow said...

Dear Citizens of Albuquerque:

I hereby decree the following:

1. Your aura will smile and never frown.
2. You will jog for the master race.
3. You will always wear a happy face.

Don't bother complaining because my Zen fascists will control you. It's 100 percent natural, you know. You think it can't happen here? Well, I'm Big Brother on my white horse and I'm here to say: mellow out or you will pay!

Michael Cadigan
(with apologies to the Dead Kennedys)

Anonymous said...

Here we go again. Some one with a little power decides for all the world to rid us of a few pleasures. If this SO CALLED City Official, wants to do something worthwhile, I'd suggest he tackle something that would help us all, not just a few. For instance, get rid of the nasty habit of issueing the ILLEGAL'S ID's THAT WE HAVE TO SUPPORT, BECAUSE THE CITY OFFICIALS DON'T CARE WHAT THEY SPEND THEIR AND OUR MONEY ON.

Of course this will never happen, because everyone on the council is afraid of standing up against the big money. Or they want to use these people to drain the pocketbooks of the tax payers. Which of course, they are not. Oh, they can vote, cause our officials are seeing that they have ID's. But, most can't speak english and then get offended when they are declined cigarettes and alcohol.I know cause I do it.

Come on Cadigan stand up for those of us that are paying your salary.
Oh by the way does anyone in your family smoke? Bet they do.

If Monte's wasn't concerned about the welfare of others, why would he have invested in the system to rid the area of the smell from the club?
And didn't he have it inspected so it met the code you people set?

I think you should also band the use of free whifs of womans perfume in the stores, its offensive to some.

In case you're wondering I'm a cigar smoker and I like the aroma of my cigars better than the smell of ilegals and their alcoholic breath.

Anonymous said...

In response to Colomichelle ... Even though we like a nice paint job on our cars, or clean looking, painted walls, houses, and fences ... maybe we should close down the paint business all together because it also increases problems with asthmatic people ... The truth is you would probally never seek work at any of those shops, or stores considering your condition ... yet ... you would probably still be eating and still have a place to sleep because you would probably get a job elsewhere that would not add to your illness!

Anonymous said...

Plus, Montes owns that entire strip mall. The cheese and coffee and the cupcake place were there AFTER the cigar store. give me a break. IF you dont like it, dont go in the store. Cadigan, please stop trying to make a name for yourself and keep to what you do best... shutting the hell up!

ColoMichelle said...

Anonymous - You are correct that I would not willingly seek employment in an industry that exposed me to conditions that would aggravate my asthma and there are limitations to the type of work I can do. However, in the late 70s and early 80s I worked as a radio station DJ, a waitress, and in the business office of a daily newspaper and in all three cases had to work around secondhand smoke. Back then a non-smoking work environment was the rare exception, not the norm.

Anonymous said...

If I owned a building and a tenant was giving me problems I'd get rid of the tenant. But, knowing Monte and his family for many years he doesn't want to do that. He simply follows the rules and guidelines established by the city. Has it inspected to make sure its done correctly and then has to put up with an idiot who looks for his 15 minutes of fame. Well, Cadigan, you've had your 15 minutes of fame, now DROP IT.

Besides, have you ever smelled Roguefort Cheese and burned coffee?
I'll take a good cigar anyday.

Am glad to have a place like Monte's to go to. Thanks Larry.

Anonymous said...

In response to Colomichelle ... I prefer certain environments over others too, but I don't try to run someone elses business, shut them down, nor seek employment at their establishments. I have found there are plenty of opportunities available elsewhere (Even in the 70's, 80's & up until now) ... Of coarse, I have always been able to start or buy my own business which would allow me to enforce my own rules. That is, until the government sticks their nose in it, takes control, then shuts me down ...

Anonymous said...

What's next on Cadigans agenda, the BO Act? We now should force people to bathe and use deodorant. That is unfragranced deodorant, because someone may not like the smell.

If you go into a fish store to buy fish, it's going to smell like fish. If this store is next to other retail outlets, such as Monte's what are they going to do, shut them down. You can't get fresh fish to not smell like fish.

Anonymous said...

The resturant next door: If I'm a patron of Monte's, I may not like being served by those mid life divorced loosy goosy chicks who engage in Bi- Sexual behavior. Maybe that's a health issue. Check them out next time you ask her for a clean fork.

Anonymous said...

This has gone way too far. I mean someone is usually doing something that could be considered offensive to someone else, so what? Get over it! Step away from the cigar smoke, fish, perfume, BO, whatever it is that makes your eyes water....or wear a painter's mask instead of whining about what everyone else is doing. Worry about your own self instead of getting up in MY grill!

Anonymous said...

Wow. Linking anti-smoking to government control- clever. And it obviously is working because most of the commenters are ignorant. If you can smell the smoke than you are being exposed to its harmful chemicals. Its a fact that second hand smoke kills. I would not be allowed to detonate a chemical bomb in a private business establishment, either. But since cigarette smoke takes years to kills someone, instead of a few minutes as a bio or chemical weapon it is perfectly ok. Next you'll be saying that murder should be allowed on private property, too. I mean, I should totally have the right to kill someone- damn that government for trying to control me and take away my pleasures!

Anonymous said...

In response to above. It's not the tobacco that kills, but the chemicals added. Cigarettes for example. There is yet to be one case of death where cigars were the cause. Cigars are 100% natural from the seed to the ash. On a side not. Tobacco founded this country. It was the first export/cash crop before we were even a nation.
Don't take my word for it. Talk to a few doctors about the health risks of cigars before comparing them to cigarettes. Also, look into H.R. 1639. It currently has 218 co-sponsors including 10 physicians.