Posted by: shoji | September 28, 2007

Smoking bans

Smoking bans are catching on. DC went smoke free at the beginning of 2007. Baltimore‘s a little behind and will go smoke free in 2008. (These moves following in the footsteps of NYC, Ireland, etc.)

What frustrates me in the debate to go smoke-free is the sky-will-fall arguments levied by bar and restaurant associations. Numerous studies of bar and restaurant revenues have shown no effect on business following smoking bans.

Below is a study of the health effects of the smoking ban in New York showing a measurable decline in heart attacks with real money saved in reduced health care spending.

Declines in Hospital Admissions for Acute Myocardial Infarction in New York State After Implementation of a Comprehensive Smoking Ban — Juster et al., 10.2105/AJPH.2006.099994 — American Journal of Public Health
Results. In 2004, there were between 3813 fewer hospital admissions for acute myocardial infarction than would have been expected in the absence of the comprehensive smoking ban. Direct health care cost savings of $56 million were realized in 2004. There was no reduction in the number of admissions for stroke.



  1. First – F**k you, Pink Lung! Ok, now that that’s out of my system, the smoking bans are annoying but they don’t impact the businesses that much.

    I personally hate them because I like to smoke while I drink. If the non-smokers don’t like it let them go somewhere else. That’s essentially what their trying to tell me.

  2. note: I edited the italics.

  3. No problem 🙂 I expected the post to be deleted or edited. I deal with rabid ANTI-smokers almost daily and I have to vent my “Pink Lung” roar on occasion.

    Again, you are right that the smoking ban doesn’t particularly impact businesses. I may find in an infringement on my rights, but it’s NOT a negative business factor.

  4. Tobacco Nazis say if you can smell it. it’s killing you–I wouldn’t dignify such obvious bool stool with a response.

    Some say it impacts business, some say it doesn’t. Does, doesn’t. Does, doesn’t. A definitive study can be made by asking each restaurateur if his tax return is bigger or smaller this year than last. Iwouldn’t believe a Tobacco Nazi if he said rain is wet.

    One thing is certain. They don’t have MY business.

  5. Nice to have such measured and reasoned arguments from the pro-smoking lobby. It’s always a pleasure, guys. Don’t let any facts stand in the way of your tubthumping.

    I’ve always been fascinated with the smokers insistence that this issue revolves around freedom, i.e. their freedom to smoke while drinking. Ain’t it a shame that they renounced their personal freedoms when they became addicted?

    Joe Camel: have you ever heard of Godwin’s Law?

    You’ve managed to invoke the Third Reich in only the fourth post! Well done!

  6. Captain Hook:

    A. I don’t subscribe to Godwin’s law or anything else Godwin. Tell him I said so.

    B. The term “Nazi” doesn’t necessarily refer to the long defunct Third Reich. In modern vernacular it means “a**hole”, as in an
    individual who wants one and a half billion people to quit smoking so his clothes don’t stink of anything but sweat.

    C. You Don’t have any facts. You have boob toob bool stool and think you’re smart.

  7. note: I edited the word in “quotes”.

    RE: Joe Camel’s comment “You Don’t have any facts.”

    The study cited in the original post examines tax filings to establish that there is no impact on business following smoking bans:

    “To assess whether the El Paso smoking ban affected restaurant and bar revenues, the Texas Department of Health (TDH) and CDC analyzed sales tax and mixed-beverage tax data during the 12 years preceding and 1 year after the smoking ban was implemented. This report summarizes the results of that analysis, which determined that no statistically significant changes in restaurant and bar revenues occurred after the smoking ban took effect. These findings are consistent with those from studies of smoking bans in other U.S. cities (5–8). Local public health officials can use these data to support implementation of smoke-free environments as recommended by the Task Force on Community Preventive Services (9).”

  8. You ask tobaccco foes–CDC, Health Department et al –if their evil machinations are good stuff. These bastards never told the truth in their lives and would implement any antitobacco measures regardless of its effect on business.

    And so far the’re supportrd by the courts on the grounds that no business has the right to kill people. Show somebody killed by smelling smoke or report directly to jail.

  9. […] post called Thimerosal redux. It’s rather salient given the comments elicited in my post on Smoking bans (which, unfortunately, moved away from arguments based on […]

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