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Uppity Wisconsin - Progressive Webmasters

« Video Competition Bill Improved a Bit More | Main | Madison School Named for Accused Thug »

April 19, 2007


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If Wisconsin politicians want to join the Fraud of the Century, there's damn little smokers and freedom lovers can do about it. Smokers are outnumbered 4 to 1 and freedom lovers are outnumbered 1000 to 1.

But the smokers owe it to themselves to stay home and put their money in the bank. That'll teach 'em.


I’m slicing the end open of my Rothschild made for me in New Orleans, Louisiana, French Quarter. 'Vieux Carre' proclaims the embossed tricolor band… old habits, old loves, old standards.
I really thought that this smoking ban would, no pun intended, blow over. I'm 60 years old, I've gone through at least one health scare a year all of my life. Many of them sincere. I remember polio and having to be home before dark, not play to late and get to bed early, or the polio would get me.
But I guess this latest crime, smoking, has a basis in science. But I think it could be solved through simple civility, but again Vieux Carre the old standards, are gone. People seem to have to depend on punishment to invoke civility.
To a Harry Connick Jr. tune, I'm picking up my Zippo engraved with THE WALL, the Vietnam cenotaph and lighting up.

Table for Two in the non-cell phone area. I wonder how those second hand 800 + MHZ radio waves are affecting me?


I'm a perfectly civil smoker. I always ask, I never light up near others who ask me not to do so, so I shiver in the Wisconsin cold, if need be. I never even litter my butts but put them out and put them back in the pack.

But the latest examples of hypocritical Puritanism in this state will win this one. And they'll still be judgmental prigs, and often ill-mannered about this issue -- and I'll still be the civil one. But they won't benefit from my taxes, because I'm not that far from another state with lower prices. . . .

Btw, a lot of them still will be judgmental and ill-mannered and drunken prigs who drop their beer cans wherever they will -- and with the continued decline in the state's smoking tax revenue, maybe this hypocritical state finally will have to raise the beer tax by at least a few pennies for the first time in decades.

Dan Sebald

Hey, alright. It's about time the state got serious about the issue.

There are no smoking ordinances or bans that I'm aware of that have restricted people from exercising their right to smoke and destroy their health in their own homes.

As for tax revenue, I've always advocated that smoking product taxes be directed to health and abatement programs and not the general fund where there would be disincentive to shrink the tax base. (BTW, when will the state be paying back the settlement money it borrowed to balance the budget five years ago?)

People gone sooner than they should have because of a tobacco habit: George Harrison, Warren Zevon, ...

Shane Wealti

You have to get up out of your seat and go to the bathroom to pee. It would be nice, and convenient if you could just pee wherever you want. I see smoking as the same pollutes the air around you and there is a more appropriate place for it.


Shane: FYI. Children in an urban environment breathe a couple pounds of automotive and industrial pollution daily
and an amount of cigarette smoke too small to measure. Why do you draw the goofy analogy with peeing? Why do you set out to harass and humiliate smokers? Because you can.


Thanks for blogging about your support of a statewide smoke-free law. We've seen the positive health effects comprehensive smoke-free ordinances have had in cities like Madison and Appleton (, and it's time to take this statewide. There's no good reason why bartenders in Madison should be protected from secondhand smoke but not bartenders in Middleton - no one should have to work in an environment where toxins are floating around in the air.
When this issue first came up in Madison, you weren't alone in saying you wanted the policy applied statewide. Tavern League members would show up to public hearings, acknowledge the negative health effects of secondhand smoke, but implore our Common Council to lobby the state legislature for a statewide law instead of enacting a local ordinance. Now that there is such a bill, the Tavern League has changed its tune. Not that I'm surprised, but the Tavern League once again is demonstrating it doesn't care about the health or well being of the employees who work in taverns across the state. Its members are speaking out of both sides of their mouths - with whatever message is politically expedient to explaining why they think local or state government shouldn't have authority over this issue - and all just to avoid having to provide safe working environments for their employees. That just makes me sick.
Thanks for staying true to your original argument of valuing the policy but wanting it to apply to everyone equally across the state. It's good to know that not everyone uses the "let's just have the state handle it" argument as as a convenient excuse.

Bob Keith

Ah, the poetry of irony. I don't smoke but always look for paradox in issues like this that advance the nanification-of-American society. Yet another smoking law would strain the paradigm of the notion of an orderly paradise. A person would not be able to smoke in a casino, but could gamble away their very soul under the smiling face of the government. A person would not be able to have one last cigarette with some friends at the neighborhood bar before going off to Iraq to be blown to bits. Smoking might advance a person's hastening of old-age health issues and burden the health care system - oh yeh, many of us can't get health care anyway. Perhaps people could sneak out behind the barn an grab a drag - after all, the farmer does not use it, the family farm is just a patch of weeds now. Perhaps I could light one last butt up before some maniac guns me down while I stop on the way home for some soda pop and eggs at the quick mart. Don't smoke in front of your pets and kids either. Oh, yeh, the Chinese poisoned my dog and a maniac gunned down my kid. And how is that war on drugs going?

Cigarettes are a soft target. There is something satisfying about lording over those that are weaker than us non-smokers. Cigarette smokers have no power. They huddle in doorways in the icy wind while they steal a break from their non-benifit, part-time job. They are relagated to the status of crack addicts. They should be pushed to the underground culture of society were they belong. We should embrace that we can crush them socially and it affords us power to be arrogant and get away with it - and we like that. It is about the only thing in society we seem able to influence any more. And, smokers are the only group left it is politically correct to openly torment. I am concerned that once cigarette smokers are all gone, and the last lung cancer wing is turned into a compond for old people with no health care, we will have to find another class of people to lord over and that search may be fatiging. Hey, wait, perhaps it could be the uninsured, it is their fault after all - just stay tuned.

We embrace gambling, war, guns, the Chinese mafia that supplies our food ingrediants to us as our own farms fall by the way, we have a whole generation who has no health care, that same generation has never known what it is like to not work on weekends, the illegal drugs keep pouring in, and many of us langish at part-time, non-benefit jobs: but let me tell you this, by the grace of what ever God you bring with you, you better not smoke in that neighborhood bar.


By 2015 tobacco will be as illegal as crack currently is. The War on Drugs marches on...

Steve Vokers

If people want to kill themselves with tobacco, I say let them and good riddance. What I object to is being pulled down with them. Why should I be forced to breathe someone else's carcinogens if I want to go have a drink or see a band at a drinking establishment? The old saying goes that your right to smash me in the face ends at my nose -- why shouldn't your right to smoke end at my breathing orifices?


Of course they should ban smoking in public places in the whole state, they should do what Ireland did and ban it in the whole country. The current ban is ineffective and destroys small businesses that attempt to operate within the city limits. As long as smokers have the easy option of travelling a short distance to spend their money in places that allow them to pollute the air, they will do it. Banning smoking in the state would level the playing field and give independent businesses a fighting chance to sustain themselves. People who are hell-bent on poisoning the air they breath should be able to do it, in the pravacy of their own homes where innocent bystanders won't be harmed.

dont care who smokes or dont smoke, my problem is telling privately owned businesses what they can do and cant do!! land of the free?


i don't knoe why wisconsin have to band smoking. i'm from there and i pretty sure that smoking don't cause any problems that can effect the people around us. yes, second hand smoking can cause many or alot of problems to peoples health, but there are such things as smoking areas.
this law is stupid. losing money for bars and other areas allowing smokers to smoke at. we should ask bars owner and any other business that contains smokers and non-smokers what they want.. not what the people in wisconsin want.

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