Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Smoking and films - censorship?

There's going to be a consultation in Liverpool about smoking and films.

The PCT (health service) wants the Council to use its licensing powers to make sure that films that show smoking (with some exceptions) get high age certificates. The argument is that children are influenced into taking up smoking because of what they see on the screen.

I say - rubbish!

I was 100 percent behind the smoking ban in public places for good Liberal reasons (second hand smoke does clear harm to other people). I am 100 percent against this other move for good Liberal reasons too.

Let's say a film maker makes a new film about the "Wild West". There is a battle. Then a truce. The two sides want to smoke the pipe of peace. Well under what the PCT wants if this is to be viewable by children the sides either have to eat the biscuit of peace instead or a warrior leans into shot to deliver a health message. So much for artistic integrity! So much for avoiding censorship.

The PCT will argue that this is a step worth taking because of children smoking. But surely what influences children is less an hour at the pictures and more what their parents, friends or role models do.

Hopefully most people will realise this is a step too far!


neil craig said...

There is no evidence whatsoever beyond the statistical error limits of "studies" claiming to have found it of any harm caused by passive smoking. Even had there been a "liberal" case for action it would first have to have been to require pubs to have modern air conditioning systems which remove over 90% of smoke rather than a ban.

In any case since the LibDems so enthusiasticly support wars, bombing civilians & the ever popular murder by dissection while still alive i don't think you can calim to be motivated in any way by a concern for health.

Paula Keaveney said...

Hello there. Not suer what you mean about the evidence re forced smoking etc. Because Liverpool took a bit of a lead on this we did considerable research, including on the various claims re extractor systems. The extractor fans simply dont do what they say on the tin. And the forced smoking harm evidence is clear. If yo have peer reviewed journal articles saying otherwise please do let me have the references.

As for being pro or anti war. Lib Dems were only major party to oppose Iraq war. I was at the demo. were you?



neil craig said...

"Do we know passive smoking doesn't cause lung cancer? No. But we know that either it does not or that if it does the risk is so tiny as to be unmeasureable"

As to extractor fans not extracting smoke that is simply obviously untrue.

As regards war crimes - do you deny that the LibDems enthusiastically supported a criminal war against Yugoslavia? Do you dispute they supported bombing of civilians? Do you dispute that they knew in advance that it was not the serbs who were engaged in genocide but the NATO organised & armed KLA? Do you dispute that they supported the KLA, as NATO police engaging in massacres, like Dragodan? Or ethnic cleansing of 350,000? Or the kidnap rape & sale of children to western brothels (something Ashdown also supported in Bosnia)? Or the dissection, while still alive, of 1,300 Serb teenagers to steal the body parts for our hospitals?

Do you dispute that a party which supports such obscenities (even Hitler didn't aspire to the last) is a disgusting, corrupt, obscene, racist, Nazi one? If you dispute it lets see on what basis.