21 1 min 11 yrs

The primary prerogative of the Stormont Assembly is to ban things. That appeals to the notion that it  must be seen to “do something” and so bit by bit it chips away at liberty;

Cigarettes will no longer be sold in vending machines in Northern Ireland from 1 March 2012. MLAs agreed the move during a debate in the assembly on Tuesday afternoon. It is being introduced to drive down the number of children and young people who smoke by limiting their unsupervised access to the machines.

Nanny always knows best.

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21 thoughts on “AND ANOTHER BAN…

  1. Look what prohibition of alcohol did in America.

    Same thing will happen in Northern Ireland.

    1) Criminals will see the fags to underaged kids.

    2) Then when the illegal competition comes to the “melt-down” stage murders and assaults will esculate.

    3) Criminals will “kick-back” to the police to look the other way.

    4) Tax money created by selling legit fags will dry up.

    Underage smoking will continue unabated and criminal activity will flourish.

    It’s a cultural thing.

  2. Eddie,

    Are you stupid? they are not banning cigarettes! they are banning their sale in a vending machine so that anyone who wants to purchase cigarettes must go through a shop worker/owner who are required then by law to sell only to those over the age of 16. this is nothing like prohibition in USA.

    You are to some extent right that underage children will simply get the cigarettes from the black market but I would suggest that they are more likely to get them by simply asking one of the ‘older boys’ to buy them. your assertions that this will result in the north falling into anarchy are baseless and quite bemuzing.


    While the assembly is quite useless I agree, I can’t see the problem with this piece of law, surely it is the role of government to protect its citzens, at least to a certain degree with personal responsibility to also play apart. this law simply helps prevent underage persons smoking what is wrong with that? it is completely different from the previous laws about smoking in cars which really are the nanny state as they involve government telling grown adults what to do or not to do in their own private space.

  3. Seeing as I’ve seen children buying cigarettes from vending machines myself, I think banning them is a good move.

  4. Dave Alton –

    And I’ve seen dogs shit on a pavement. Let’s ban them too, eh? Children already cannot buy cigarettes by law. Because one or two might have got around the law, possibly sent there by lardy parents who took them into a pub, is no reason for the state to involve itself further.

  5. Next thing you know, they’ll be banning kids from drinking cider and smoking fags in the schoolyard.

    And the bastards won’t stop there. Oh no. You mark my words: they’ll eventually ban kids from bringing their guns and knives into the classroom 🙁

  6. Richard Clinton –

    Again, children cannot do those things by law. Maybe if they are flouting those laws then cider, fags, guns and knives should be banned for everyone?

  7. Pete Moore: ‘And I’ve seen dogs shit on a pavement. Let’s ban them too, eh?’
    Ah Pete, taking a point to it’s illogical conclusion as usual. You responses are like the comments section of the Daily Mail website. It’s already illegal for dogs to shit on the pavement so we don’t have to ban them and no one is banning cigarettes, just cigarette vending machines.
    There are more than one or two kids who buy cigarettes from vending machines. Even when I was at school many years ago, the vending machine in the British Legion was the main supplier of fags to the few kids who smoked in my class. Over the years I’ve seen many kids in the arcades and pubs using these machines.

  8. this isn’t about banning things its about enforcement. what is the point of a law if it is not enforced. if children can flout the law by obtaining cigs via vending machine (which we all know happens for both their parents and their own use) it is the state’s duty to prevent the contravention of the law.

  9. lets also be claer Pete they are not banning cigs only one method of supply. people of the right age can still buy such items at the pub/shop counter

  10. cathal –

    Some, a few children will get cigarettes no matter what the state does about it.

    Come on, where does this stop? Every day there’s another law, another regulation, another measure, every day just one more tiny step to perfect society and mankind. Two days ago we had this in The Telegraph:

    New mothers and fathers should be sent text messages from the Department for Education telling them how to be good parents, a Government advisor has said.”

    Someone shoot me in the head. Not so long ago no-one with a brain would have conceived of anything liek this, now it’s a daily ordeal or hectoring, barking and nannying by the state.

    Everyone – just stop it. Stop poking your noses into everyone else’s lives, take care of your own business.

  11. Pete,

    You have a point about the gov sticking their nose in where it doesn’t belong but i just don’t think it applies in this situation.

    if we took your advise about taking care of our own business why shouldn’t drugs be legalised?

    the text message is extremely stupid though

  12. cathal –

    Maybe they should be decriminalised. A valid and intellectually coherent case can be made for the decriminalisation of drugs on economic, social, criminal and personal liberty grounds.

  13. Pete,

    Society changes, attitudes change, the goalposts shift. It was ever thus.

    Not too long ago it was illegal to fail to attend a Church of England service on the Sabbath (recusancy). Fancy that.

    Contrary to what Daily Mail readers believe, we’re not going to the shitting dogs bit by bit, month by month.

  14. Health Minister Edwin Poots said the regulations would bring Northern Ireland into line with the rest of the UK.

  15. Yes , shocking nanny state interference in individual liberty. They’ll be banning the Burqa next !

  16. Phantom

    I agree – but I note that those who are most outraged by this and who complain about govt interference are often the first to demand government bans on other things they don’t like – such as Burqas.

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