Re: "War on Smut"
It's similar to the 'war on drugs' as, in a way, it's really just pointing a finger and saying: "this is the reason for our problems" and then using it as a political football.
The dissimilarity, however, is that there is hard data to back up the addictive nature of many illegal narcotics (not all) and the associated negative impacts to society but no well-supported evidence of 'addiction' to pornography being a real thing, even less so of consumption of pornography (whether casually or routinely) being detrimental to society as a whole.
Whenever the issue is raised, the question is how to correct the 'harm' rather than whether there is, actually, any harm. And that's because the people who push these issues already assume that there is harm and they do so because it accords with their ideological, and often religious, beliefs. So what 'evidence' and 'studies' they seek out (or have brought to them by lobbyists) are those which confirm their pre-existing opinions.
Of course, this happens all the time in politics - an issue is taken to be self-evidently true so that politicians can get right in there with strong words and policies to 'get tough' while simultaneously accusing those who call for a more measured and fact-based approach as being ogres who support whatever harm is being alleged.
Oppose vague, unrestricted new powers of surveillance and privacy invasion? Well then you are supporting terrorists/pedophiles/rapists/drug dealers/etc . . .
It's just so much easier to assert that a problem exists and that it is as Big Problem™ than it is to find out what are really worth spending effort and public money on. The unfortunate thing is that the public tends to just accept that and prefer the sound of a politician calling for action than one calling for understanding.