What I cannot understand is why people get so exercised about the smoking ban as an infringement of "civil liberties". That seems to me to be a complete abuse of the term civil liberties which hardly does justice to the work done by people such as Martin Luther King or Nelson Mandela as *real* campaigns for *really meaningful* liberties. The right to pollute the atmosphere (whether in public or private) with loathsome fumes seems to me, whether you support the case or not, to be on a wholly different scale.Well, I think I've covered it fairly well before, but summary:
I don't smoke, have never smoked, and don't plan to start anytime soon. But I have friends that do. I also have friends with heavy asthma who need smoke free environments. If you encourage pubs to ban it through [tax] breaks, etc, then many will, but due to the demand that will exist for premises that allow smoking, not all will. So my smoking friends can go where they wish, my asthmatic friends can go out safely, and I, as a rational actor within a functioning market*, can make my own choices.I work in a small town in the back end of beyond. There are already pubs, with no incentives other than the market, that have switched to being non-smoking. Give them some tax incentives, make them advertise their smoking policy, make them ensure ventilation for staff benefit?
Prod the market in the right direction, let rational economic behaviour do the rest. It's not hard. It's just not a headline grabbing "vote winner". Oh, it's a "stealth tax on business" as well. FFS.