back to article Disconsolate Spanish smokers driven out into blizzard

Glum Spanish smokers have resigned themselves to the idea that the taking of tobacco will in future be done on the street, as a ban on smoking in public places came into force on 2 January. Initial reaction to the clampdown was predictable enough, with one customer of my local bar declaring on Sunday morning the government …

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Calculations

Did you subtract the costs of lung cancer treatment? What about the costs saved from people taking fewer sick days?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Re: Simples

Me too, and anyone who finishes with

End of

Additional line so that I don't finish with end of

Oh bugger, another additional line

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Black Helicopters

as I said

I couldn't figure indirect costs out. However, if we start with the fact that on average for any person the older they are, the more they cost the NHS, and that stopping smoking makes you live longer, you can see that fewer smokers is a bigger drain on the health service. Treatment for lung cancer is a fairly defined thing ... you pay for it and it works (so that's another OAP to cost the health service more) or it doesn't and you have another corpse who can't contribute to the tax base any more.

Any cost saving in terms of fewer sick days will be wiped out by the above. And besides, time off for smoking-related illness is a mere pinprick when compared to time lost due to alcohol abuse.

I suspect that as the smoking ban pigeons come home to roost, we are less likely to see any action on alcohol abuse. Quite apart from the social status of drinking compared to smoking, it's just inconceivable that any governement dare risk a similar experience with alcohol. So they'll probably rejig the ACMD to remove any need for scientific advice, which will allow them to ignore any calls for further alcohol controls.

What's that you say ? They already have. Fancy that !

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Grenade

no you don't

ignore them. You feel some urge to reply to them to point out your imagined superiority.

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The only problem with your figures is that they dont add up

You have taken a far too simplistic look at the cost of smoking to the NHS and the net contribution of smokers to the pot.

If we assume that from a packet of 20 at £5 per pack £4 is tax and multiply that by 365 the typical smoker pays about £1460 a year in tax.

In medical terms you have a term called the golden hour when someone suffers a heart attack, that golden hour costs the NHS £60,000 to treat one heart attack, the after care is even greater. You would have to smoke 20 a day for 41 years to pay for the first hour of your treatment!

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease costs a fortune and you can live for years in a semi disabled state on oxygen all the time costing the benefits system and the NHS with no net contribution. Have a heart attack and survive and your even less economically viable.

Lung cancer survival rates arent great either so that analogy isnt too strong either.

All in all smokers cost more than they generate in both tangible and intangible costs to society.

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Neither do yours

The reality is because we foolishly try to keep everyone alive for as long as possible everyone gets old and ill and requires expensive medical treatment until something eventually kills them. Smokers are no different and no more expensive, the difference is they get ill a bit younger and so have a few less years of being a senile burden on society.

All in all smokers cost society less than non-smokers without considering the huge additional taxes they pay.

I look forward to being dead while you non-smoking, 5 a day eating, healthy exercise types have another 2-3 years of dementia in an old peoples (waiting to die) home wearing nappies and being spoon fed wondering if anyone will come to see you and not being able to remember if they did.

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Re: Re: Simples...

Usage of "Daily Fail" and "Micro$oft" / "M$" also makes people sound like dickheads.

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Re: The only problem with your figures is that they dont add up

"You have taken a far too simplistic look at the cost of smoking to the NHS and the net contribution of smokers to the pot."

Other costs include days of sickness lost, due to URTIs, which are more common in smokers due to depressed immune function. Flesh and bone tissue take longer to repair due to the effects of tobacco. Then there are the obvious cardio-pulmonary complications so often mentioned, and a host of others that all amount to a mountain of beans, including emphysema, asthma, COAD [...]. There are many ways that smoking kills, and they may not be obvious until the end. I suggest that smokers boogie on down to whyquit.com and ask themselves who they'd like to be today. It's grisly.

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Re: Neither do yours

"I look forward to being dead while you non-smoking, 5 a day eating, healthy exercise types have another 2-3 years of dementia in an old peoples (waiting to die) home wearing nappies and being spoon fed wondering if anyone will come to see you and not being able to remember if they did"

Just one of the points where you diverge from the data; smoking is associated with a significant increase in dementia. In addition to which, the increase in older fitter people is associated with an improvement in dietary habits and the loss of unhealthy ones, such as smoking, a sedentary indoor life, and so on. Another effect of smoking is arterial narrowing, leading to loss of blood supply to peripheral areas, gangrene and thence amputation. Hmm, yummy, yummy! OTOH, exercise causes arterial widening (within reason), muscular (and thus vascular) tone, a more efficient heart and therefore better circulation. Smokers go in the opposite direction and, due to the cognitive impairments to (e.g.) the basal ganglia will not think so efficiently. Thus they aren't even likely to cogitate about whether will visit them and whom, never mind the natural forgetting that follows from tobacco induced dementia.

Next?

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Re : nsld

"that golden hour costs the NHS £60,000 to treat one heart attack, the after care is even greater"

Would you care to be more specific with regards to your figure? This lot look as thought they've just been pulled out of the air. And then doubled.

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L.B
Pint

re: as You said...

Being old does not necessarily mean being burden on the NHS, that's a real fact.

Smokers age much faster due to there sad pathetic nicotine addiction, but get many more deseases than the usual cancer.

In fact Cancer is one of the less likely killers for smokers. More likely is the damage done by the smoke that causes emphysema, which causes breathlessness and poor oxygenation of the blood.

This often results in early incapacity of the person, which continues until they take their last breath, as there is no cure apart from a lung transplant and why waist a good pair of lungs.

One of the main actual causes of death for smokers is pneumonia, which effect smokers far worse than non-smokers, which could be deemed as lucky for some as the later side effects of emphysema will also cause the extremities of the body to die before there time. Resulting in months or even years of ulcers until the toes, feet, fingers, hands and if they last long enough whole limbs are amputated to stop them rotting away.

There are whole set of nasty side effects of smoking and this is why the average 30 year old smoker looks like a 40 year old non-smoker.

This is nothing like the vast majority of people who enjoy a bit of alcohol, as it does not have much effect on those around them. It has even been proven that a moderate intake of alcohol (particularly red wine) improves your life expectancy.

I personally believe that anyone under the age of about 60 who smokes is just proving to the world they are a moron, that or they were abused by their parents and turned into nicotine addicts as children.

A perfect example of idiocy are those who claim not to be addicts and insist they do it because they like it!

Well if you like it so much, even when standing outside in the cold and wet stop complaining, or admit you have a problem and get help, just any other junky.

Beer: as you can enjoy it without being an addict, and unless I decide to piss the after effects on a smoker it effects no one else.

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Re: Re: Simples

"I just ignore anyone who uses that word."

Like yeah and, like, a few other, like, mindless tics.

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Blizzard?

Blizzard? Seriously? How often does the weather there even get below freezing?

Here in the USA's upper Midwest, it's a veritable balmy day if temperatures get above freezing this time of year, and hovering around -15 to -20 C is de rigueur for the thermometer.

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Alert

@AC 15.19

So if they left vat alone and repealed the smoking ban, then they would be at least 2 billion better off.

plus the increased sales youd get in pubs, etc, it could be more

of course, this would be too easy for them now.

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Black Helicopters

You have no understanding of "government"

... which is an increasing land-grab of powers over the citizenry and their possessions until something has to give.

Are we any freer than we were 5 years ago ? 10 ? 15 ? Do we pay more or less tax than 5, 10, 15 years ago ?

Plot it on a graph if you like. You'll see where we're headed.

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Boffin

Interesting video

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xdhzk1_the-anti_tech

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Truely

I've seen some bollocks in my life, but that pile of crap really takes the biscuit...

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Abstinence syndrome.

A question for the smokers: doesn't it bother you to have an abstinence syndrome so strong you are ready to go out into the freezing cold to calm it?

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Pleasure syndrom

As a non-smoker doesn't it bother you that you don't have the opportunity to frequently experience pleasure so great you would be willing to go out in the freezing cold for it?

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Net pleasure

As a smoker doesn't it bother you that the net pleasure/benefits of smoking are far outweighed by the negative ones?

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Nope

Considering all that goes with it, including cost, no, not at all.

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Smokers...

More likely to die early from (really) unpleasant diseases, until they gasp for their last breath and it doesn't come. Don't you want to see your kids grow up and get married? Enjoy a retirement with your partner?

More likely to have kids that smoke (they grow up used to the stink and don't think of it as just weird). Look upon it as your bequest to them, the same suffering you'll go through and the same early death.

Smell unpleasant (body, clothes, hair) and absolutely foul to snog.

Their kids smell unpleasant at school too. Which is hard on them.

Can't go 20, then 10, then 5, then a few minutes without coughing.

Hypocrites when they tell their kids not to take drugs. What's nicotine eh?

Donating a large chunk of their income to the government and unethical corporates. So stop whining about taxes-you're voluntarily paying more.

Responsible for large tracts of land in poor countries being used for nicotine production rather than food production.

Pollute the environment with every fag they smoke.

Switch to patches or use hypnotherapy to get off. Consume fruit, gum or even sweets (in moderation) for mouth feel, and do yourselves, your wallet, your family and the planet a favour.

Is your life so horrible that you are happy to pay, day in, day out, to end it sooner?

Seriously, it's disgusting. Chuck the habit for 2011 and have a longer, higher quality life.

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Anonymous Coward

Won't be long before...

"Honestly officer, it's marijuana, not tobacco."

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Re: Won't be long before...

"Honestly officer, it's O'Dweeds!" (Google will help here.)

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Flame

Lazy and stupid

Considerate smokers do not impose their smoke on those who don't want to be in it. Rude smokers don't care. So instead of treating the latter as transgressors of the standards of courtesy they are treated as transgressors of the law.

What happens when some loudly vocal group declares mobile phone use or texting in public as rude? Or the wearing of clothes of clashing colo(u)r?

Using the government and police to address social problems is lazy and stupid.

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re: Lazy and stupid

Using a mobile phone in the cinema is merely annoying. Smoking around non-smokers is actively harmful, with plenty of evidence to back it up. If the new fad of the year was going around punching random people ala Fight Club, would you call that a social problem and claim that the police shouldn't intervene?

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Grenade

to the non and anti smokers

I get to work an hour less for the same money as you and you are just bitter you haven't got the balls to demand a similar break....

As for the rest, yeah whatever....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: to the non and anti smokers

Not where I work you don't. Whenever you use your access card to go outside for a fag you are considered absent and need to stay later to make up the hours. So while I'm at home with my feet up relaxing you're still at work coughing your lungs up.

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Flame

AAAAAH ha ha ha

The Spanish government should've taken initiative from the British: Implement the ban in the summer, when everybody's sitting outside anyway.

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Pirate

This somking ban is all very well

Until you experience the modern phenomenon of dance-floor arse gas or eau-du-armpit. Bring back the smokers!

Skull and crossbones to illustrate the effect thereof.

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Know what,

even if the link between second hand smoke and illness is tenuous, it still fucking stinks, it still stains everything yellow and kissing a smoker IS like licking an ashtray. If thats how you want to live you should be forcibly exiled from those of us who dont.

Oh, simples & end off.

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Stop

Passive smoking is theft

Those who try and passively smoke are just thieves. That smoke is MY smoke, and anyone who so much as dares to breathe it in should be subject to the full force of the law !

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@cornz 1

And self rightous picks should just fuck off and die.

Personaly I have no issue with smoking outside, but in good weather you get poeple bitching about you smoking in beer gardens...now they do my fucking head in.

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Grenade

Well,

why havent YOU just fucked off and died.

FYI, 6 months ago i watched my mother die from a lung condition brought on from 50 years of smoking. Dont you dare stand there and spout vitriolic comments about my feelings or opinions.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Well,

OK, guys, let us not have a fight.

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Anonymous Coward

No so effective in warm countries

I was in Nice last January, where it was chilly in the evenings but much warmer than home. The insides of the bars and restaurants were almost empty, with everyone eating or drinking outside - where they could still smoke. So the effect of the ban was basically zero. Much of Spain (i.e. the bits we go to on holiday) will be the same - no change, unless you were one of the tiny number of people who didn't want to sit on the terrace.

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Big Brother

No mention here of the real culprit

I always wondered how it was that the Spanish seemed to have arrived at a sensible position, where the many bars were divided into smoking or non-smoking, with a green or red label on the door, so that non-smokers could avoid having their otherwise pristine lungs violated.

The reason that I wondered was that I knew that this was contrary to an EU directive. I needn't have wondered, it was just the Spanish which like many Mediterranean countries, are fairly creative about such matters.

No doubt, there has been some sort of withholding of Germany's or the UK's largesse though, until they complied implicitly...

The fascist EU goes marching on, and nobody even bothers to mention it.

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Stop

Smokers support the NHS

Total tax revenue for tobacco in the UK is 10bn.

Cost of smoking related illness to the NHS is 2.7bn.

So that's 7.3bn that the rest of you get out of us smokers.

Simples.

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Anonymous Coward

@mickey finn, eh you just did

That smoking cost the country more than it receives in tobacco tax is a deliberate lie.

Smokers pay more tax both on tobacco and alcohol as they consume more than their non-smoking counterparts. Hence the decline in the pub business and the increase in VAT

If we believe that smokers die younger then overall they receive less pension and health care, and wont be wanting to live off our children's future earnings, whilst they trundle their zimmers around in senile circles, druling the while.

It has been suggested that smoking increases resistance to other environmental pollutants which is handy given the way the environment is going

Smoking reduces appetite, explaining where all the fit bird have gone. Obesity also kills people younger and the tubby eating machines create more CO2 due to food production and processing then smokers do even excluding the extra timber needed for the supersized upcoming door frame increases.

So in summary non-smokers are tight wads who pay less to the state in taxes but and want to live as long as possible off our children when they get to pension age. On top of that they insist on limiting the lives and pleasures of people who don't share their beliefs and insit on making all the totty into lard arses. Non-smokers should stay in a plastic bubble where the nasty world can't get at them and allow everyone else to live as they please.

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Anonymous Coward

@AC - 5th January 2011 11:21 GMT

>Non-smokers should stay in a plastic bubble

You've got a damn good idea there but let's not discriminate. Everyone should stay in a plastic bubble. That way I get to breathe nice clean air and the smokers can recycle their own second hand smoke. We all win. You don't have whining non-smokers stealing your offensive by product and you get to re-inhale it yourself. This will probably have the added benefit that you die even quicker so I can enjoy more of my retirement paid for by your taxes before you had become such a burden on the health service that any tax you had paid was wasted on keeping you alive.

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Silver badge
Stop

Smoking is a dying habit anyway...

..pretty soon it'll either be A) too costly*, or B) the tobacco companies with eventually run out of customers.

* If I were voted King, I'd increase it 10% per annum, for ever.

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Silver badge

Stupid bans

More EU regulation.

In Germany pubs, bars and clubs can put a sticker on the door claiming they are a 'Raucher club' allowing people to smoke.

In Spain I would advise pub/bar owners to continue to allow customers to smoke, if the bar is fined then go bankrupt, sell it to yourself and open under a different name, the paper trail will make it so difficult that the police will have to give up. If enough people turn round and say stuff you the government have to give in (it is after all supposedly a democracy, and even if it wasn't Russia proves that enough people can make a difference).

The British also need to decide about whether we care about our freedom or not and similarly take proper group action.

The ONLY reason that governments get away with draconian laws and restrictions is because the public are lazy and passive. Time to wake up and get our freedom back, many of our parents/grandparents/greatgrandparents died to protect freedom and liberty and our comfy sitting on our arse doing nothing approach has allowed all of that to be removed.

I'm not even a smoker....

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Silver badge
Go

oh well.

I had no idea this was coming. This years holiday to menorca will be even better now.

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Anonymous Coward

Actually there is a simple answer to this problem

Grow your own tobacco ( like UK ganja farms ) and brew you own beer, start a club of smoking brewers each week going to a members house to smoke and drink his latest batch, tax free.

Unfortunately legal addicts can't get their sh*t together enough to work this out for themselves and implement it. It's a shame because it would work around all the restrictions and as distillation is legal now you could do your own spirits too.

Then you could live it up on the NHS like the non-smokers, yeah right, like there is going to be free health care in this country for much longer

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Stop

Eh?

Since when was distilliation of ethanol legal in the UK???

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@cornz1

no production of alcohol is not illegal see http://customs.hmrc.gov.uk/channelsPortalWebApp/channelsPortalWebApp.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=pageImport_ShowContent&propertyType=document&columns=1&id=HMCE_CL_000245

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Anonymous Coward

"simples" is in the dictionary now

So there to the language prigs, anyone would think you French insisting on an unchanging language.

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pity the foo'

"So there to the language prigs, anyone would think you French insisting on an unchanging language."

Which dictionary, Urban? :)

I'll just complain that we should not be intentionally adding completely non-logical elements to the language. What next, 'ax' becomes a valid replacement for 'ask'?

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Anonymous Coward

Heard of google?

Why don't you try it before posting, but to answer your question how about the Collins it was widely reported

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Silver badge

We're supposed to take advice on written English ...

... from someone who can't even construct a sentence?

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