"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -Aldous Huxley

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wThursday, March 07, 2002

SECOND HAND BLISS: When she was interviewing me about a forthcoming piece in Reason, Sara Rimensnyder asked if there was anything that I like about Canada. I blurted out the first thing that sprang to mind: "You can still smoke in the malls." I'm not a smoker but a) I hate the self righteous preening of the anti-smoking crowd (here is a review of former FDA chief David Kessler's most recent book) and b) I think second hand smoke is yummy.

Maybe I should take a trip to Israel where Howard Mortman reports that smoking is illegal in public places but everybody lights up anyway. According to Mortman, Israelis don't require health warnings on their cigarette packages, don't hike cigarette taxes to discourage smoking and don't even stop the kids from buying smokes and puffing away. "Someday these approaches to social engineering may all come to [Israel]," says Mortman, but they are "likely [to] be ignored." Here's hoping.

posted by Jeremy at 5:13 PM