Monday, 8 October 2012

THE TRUE COSTS-prick up your ears smokerphobes!

My thanks to Allan Hansford:-

Smoking bans kill businesses-fact! 
I think it was Tom Hanks as 'Forest Gump' who said "stupid is as stupid does" and never has a truer word been spoken-especially when it comes to the costs of this now totally ridiculous exercise of trying to get smokers to quit smoking. After 5 years of banging heads against brick walls would you not think that even the dimmest smoker hater might concede that smokers who actually enjoy smoking-and there's millions of them-might NOT want to give up their pleasurable, soothing, relaxing fags? People laugh when I mention the costs of all this 'quitmania' but believe you me, there is nothing to laugh about when our governments (Labour & Conservative-oh, and the part time ilLiberals) are happy to cost this country nigh on £28bn just because a few smoker hating nutters hoodwinked Blairs totally inefficient and mentally retarded government into passing a "total smoking ban in enclosed premises".
Total expenditure on NHS Stop Smoking Services was £88.2 million, £3.9 million more than in 2010/11 when it was £84.3 million. The cost per quitter was £220, the same seen in 2010/11.
So it has cost the taxpayers (you & me) £220 to stop one (1) person smoking for 4 whole weeks-don't forget that government uses the 28 day barometer for these calculations. That's £55 per week, of our money on one person-who may well starting again on the 29th day, especially if 'prizes' have been attached to the initial 'giving up'. Most people don't spend that amount on tobacco per week so there is no way that such a figure can be deemed acceptable.  
If we use £88.2m as a guide over 5 years then we can safely assume that we have invested nearly half a billion pounds on a 'no win situation'. Oh, and this figure does not include all the money spent, by government, on nicotine patches, gums, sprays etc!
816,444 people set a quit date through NHS Stop Smoking Services. This is a 4 per cent increase (28,917) from 2010/11 when 787,527 people set a quit date.
Less than half of the 816,444 that set out to quit managed to last the necessary 4 weeks-SO MORE THAN HALF THE EXPENDITURE WAS COMPLETELY WASTED! The simple truth is that the pharmaceutical companies who engineered smoking bans in the first place, did very nicely, financially, out of the deal. I'll bet they've got sore hands rubbing them together with glee every single day or every time a new 'initiative' pops its head above the parapet!
Now let’s look at those figures again... over just two years.
1,604,071 people stopped smoking at a cost of £172,500,000 PLUS the cost of Pharmacotherapy. The Pharmaceutical companies made, 1,604,071 X £20 = £32,080,420 PER WEEK! That is £128,321,680 PER MONTH from the NHS. Stopping smoking can be a long and arduous task... If the average is three months to quit, the Pharmaceutical companies are making around £150,000,000 per year. That is not to mention other DRUGS like Zyban and Champix and new DRUGS being developed..
The 3 month cessation period is simply an estimated average as some may well kick the smoking bug within 4 weeks but I know a couple of lads round here that have been trying for over a year and moan constantly that the patches etc cost a damned sight more than their tobacco did! One thing is for sure, the majority of smokers certainly cannot claim to have quit within 28 days unless it is by sheer willpower alone-and that is the one sure fired way of quitting! And we mustn't forget those that are no longer with us courtesy of using Zyban/Champix etc; they still count as quitters to the likes of ASH. 
(With our condolences-Pfizer)

And of course we even have the joys of professional people ripping off the government for £90,000+ by claiming for 2,000 bogus smokers @ £45  a time. Just how many £45's have governments paid out over the past 5 years?
You need to ask the questions about this quit smoking malarkey-don't you? Well of course you do, and you, and you over their taking no notice because you've never smoked a cigarette in your life. Governments have sold everyone, especially the non smokers as there are 50million of them, down the pan simply to appease the multi national drug companies, especially Pfizer. Who gets what backhanders I do not know, and I actually dread to think how much they might be but the drug companies are not being handed your money on a plate for nothing! Of course it is anybody's guess how much governments have spent on quit smoking products but it will be no small amount!
Away from all that we can soon start adding up figures again for we know, courtesy of Paul Nuttall MEP, that every 10,000 newly unemployed costs this government £1.53m per week in 'Jobseekers Allowance' alone and as our hospitality sector has shred nigh on 200,000 jobs in the last 5 years we can soon see what a hefty figure that has become, nigh on £8bn per annum! So if we only afford 2.1/2 years of this ridiculously implemented ban  with these figures we can see that £20bn has 'gone west' without even scratching the surface of the true cost. Then of course we need to add all the other unemployment benefits due to those now laid idle by this ban. Add to that the colossal amount of Council Tax rebates granted due to  unemployment caused by the smoking ban and you might start getting a glimmer of what this silly law is really costing this country.
But it doesn't stop there either! Each major Bingo hall (Gala, Rank, Mecca etc) that closes costs the government £780,000 per annum in LOST revenue (bingo tax). 72 major bingo outlets have closed in the past five years, which to my reckoning leaves the government short £56,160,000 every single year-and that's without all the smaller outlets!
 (Brighton's Gala Bingo hall due for demolition)
Pubs are costing the government a fortune too-and they're the ones that are closed! In 2010 alone, the government lost out on £254,000,000 in lost taxes, increasing by more than £5.5m per week! Let's be generous and only account for four of the five years and easily rack up another £billion. Go on my son, it just gets better and better!
Anyone still doubting the £28bn figure quoted to me? I'm not.
Shall we start on the reverse of unemployment pay-outs for the government-the employed?
Just think how much this government is losing in NI contributions per annum courtesy of this ban that has now closed in excess of 12,000 businesses. just think of the horrendous amount of income tax not being collected in every week, every month, every financial year by whatever idiot government is supporting the health loonies at that time. Don't forget, we are not just talking about the licensee, we are talking about all the others employed in each pub. The figures simply don't bear thinking about, they really don't.
Five years of misery for smokers, five years of total misery for all the licensees now no longer licensees, five years of total misery for all those rendered unemployed thanks to closures-and for what? Smoking rates do not seem to have diminished all that much considering the humongous cost now involved and it is rising all the time! In fact smoking in Ireland has increased NOT decreased. Neither can it be proved that the smoking ban has saved a single life although it has proved that this lunatic health regime is capable of killing anyone! Could Laurel & Hardy write such a script I ask? Now a logical person would think that something must change here and it's not too difficult to see what it is that needs to be done! These people on the New York borders soon sussed it out - watch& learn.
 Think of all the money that could be saved if education was further implemented over restrictions. Clive Bates was a great advocate of such, sadly his successor, Deborah Arnott has her chips firmly placed on  'restrictions of any type'.
Think of all the pubs that could be opened if the ban was amended. Think of all the clubs that could offer their members of both persuasions the comfort of the club they joined. Think of all the people that could be re-employed in the profession they know & love if smokers had their own little room all to themselves. Smokers will always smoke but they are not interested in non smokers who want to demean them, in fact they would be delighted with a cosy room and a bar to themselves so there is no need to ban them from all enclosed spaces. We've already wasted £28bn on this lunatic campaign, must we look forward to the next £28bn after all, as good old Forest Gump said, "stupid is as stupid does!"

1 comment:

  1. Phil, your calculations in the microcosm track well with the results that Dave Kuneman and I found from government figures tracking 8 states and the entire US during the 1990s when bans were first really spreading in the US. Even though at that time they almost never included bars, they were STILL devastating. One single state, California, likely lost close to one hundred BILLION dollars from 1990 into the first few years of the 2000s due to its bans. For details see our full study at:

    - MJM