December 29, 2006

Like Locusts

The anti-smoking movement is moving in on the South. I've heard from friends that they're starting to raise their voices in NC & now I see at Say Uncle's they have their sights on Tennessee. & some smoking ban supporters have been vocal in the comments to his post.

Again I'm pressed for time but I will mention that since Colorado has enacted its ban on smoking all the waitresses I know (that work in bars) have had a 50% reduction in income. Ditto for the bartenders. & you do not want to know what bands are paying nowadays. I thought the music biz was an economically challenged field before the ban...

So if you ever thought that a smoking ban was a good idea for your state the restaurant scene won't be effected by it too much, but you'll have trouble finding a decent band when you do go out. Besides, what kind of blues bar experience do you think you'll get in a smoke free state? If you're not willing to risk a thin haze of smoke to see a really good blues band then you don't deserve a really good blues ban - you deserve the Backstreet Boys. :)

Posted by Publicola at December 29, 2006 03:41 PM | TrackBack

Lots of people do not go to bars because they want to avoid the smoke. They are out of the habit of going out at night, if they ever were in the habit.

They will eventually start going out and income will pick up.

"Smoking in public"? Well, at least heroin addicts don't go around sticking needles in people who don't want to take the drug.

(Heheh) "No sympathy".

Posted by: Phillep at December 31, 2006 02:41 PM

Phillep, you don't have a grasp on the economics of the bar scene I'm afraid. While a small portion of folks will go to bars now that they're smoke free they won't do so int he quantity or witht he regularity that the smokers who've abandoned the bar scene did.

So while a bar may gain 10 customers who come out 3 or 4 times a year they've lost 50 who would come out 3 or 4 times a month. They may retain enough business to stay open but they lose income compared to pre-ban days.

& last i recall no one wa scomplaing that smokers were forcing people to put cigs in their mouths. you have a few people with legitimate health issues (severe asthma, etc..) who complain, & the rest latch onto the "second hand smoke causes cancer" bullshit to rationalize thier just not liking the smell of smoke.

But typically those folks are of a shallow enough mentality that they wouldn't know a good band if it kicked them in the ass so for them the 3 or 4 times a year they get all brave, stay up past 9;30 & go out won't be much different except they'll start to complain of the smell of beer & liquor at some point. For the rest of us the quality of the bands will decline as will the pay for thos ein the business cause we simply won't go out as much.

Anyway the notion that non-smokers will fill the void left by disgruntled smokers is bullshit. There just aren't enough non-smokers who will start hitting the bars with any regularity to make up for smokers who now hit the liquor store & go home.

& that's not even getting into the morality of a government telling a business what legal activities it may or may not allow on the business owners own damn premises. But I suppose your desire for a smoke free world doesn't leave room for sympathy for property rights does it?

Posted by: Publicola at January 2, 2007 07:05 AM

Up front: I don't really care what drugs people use, so long as I don't have to use it with them.

No, I don't know about bar economics, but I do remember the same argument was made about resteraunts (never could spell that word), but few ended up closing.

I agree about property rights. People should be able to smoke in private areas, like bars, and the cities should be able to ban smoking in public areas. Instead, we have it the other way around.

Why the public area ban? Putting a cig in your mouth does not give you control of the smoke or the drugs in the smoke, so the people "using" the drug include people who are not "smoking". The drugs should be confined to the people actually wanting to use the drugs.

(By the way, I recall a pre-internet incident where some kid lit some pot in a small brazier and hid in the closet with it. He got busted. His defence was that he was not "smoking". Didn't work for some reason.)

So far as I'm concerned, smoking in public is worse manners than cutting rancid farts in an elevator. At least the stink farts are caused by intestinal flora generally beyond the control of the farter.

Posted by: Phillep at January 7, 2007 12:28 PM
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