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Making Cigarettes Illegal

What would happen if cigs were completely outlawed?? Most people, including myself, used to say that an undergroung black market would emerge to take its place. The cig Mafia would either grow the stuff locally or import tobacco as leaves or in cartons from non-prohibtion countries.

But the more I think about this folks the more I'm beginning to wonder if this is true and here's why:
Tobacco is not the same as alcohol or marijuana in that it doesnt nearly give the same "buzz", granted tobacco is an addictive drug but would it be enough of a need-to-have drug as all the other ones??? Would people spend the extra money that they would have to pay smugglers to get their fix??? The more I think about it the more I'm beginning to wonder. Given all the hassles a cig Mafia would have to go through to get their product on the black market a pack of cigs would have to be in the $ 10 range or more and this could be too much for most people. Also to be profitable a smuggler must import cigs by the cartons and this would make it more expensive than weed(price per kg).

One could grow the leaves themselves but I would it be worth the hassle??? It takes up a lot of space just to grow one plant (more so than marijuana), so would people risk being charged and having a criminal record over merely a few tobacco plants??? I dont think so!!
I think most people would say that its not worth the hassle and simply butt out!!

P.S. I quit 2 years ago and its the best thing I ever did :)
 

xarir

Retired TERB Ass Slapper
If you believe the government, cigarette smuggling was endemic and a massive problem. That's why they cut the taxes on cigarettes some years ago (only to gradually raise them over the next few years).

Theoretically, if cigarettes cost something ridiculous like $20 a pack here in Ontario but only $5 a pack in the US, I would think the smuggling would start up again. Smokers would be only too happy to pay "only" $15 a pack right? I would think banning cigarettes entirely would lead to the same thing.

And let's not forget, the US tried something like this back in the 1930s only with alcohol. In the long run, Prohibition didn't do them any good.
 
xarir said:
Theoretically, if cigarettes cost something ridiculous like $20 a pack here in Ontario but only $5 a pack in the US, I would think the smuggling would start up again.
Yes but what if you increased the criminal penalties so severely that it would be equivalent to Heroin, would people still smuggle??


xarir said:
And let's not forget, the US tried something like this back in the 1930s only with alcohol. In the long run, Prohibition didn't do them any good.
Yes but tobacco and alcohol are 2 different things, I just dont think that tobacco is a need-to-have drug. And what if the U.S followed suit with Canada and banned cigs also then you run into a huge transportation expense just to import from Mexico or the Carribean. I just makes it too expensive.
 
W

WhOiSyOdAdDy?

and then what should we ban next?

fast food, travel to countries that allow you to eat endangered species, maybe porn or chewing gum in public?
 

xarir

Retired TERB Ass Slapper
johnnyhandsome said:
Yes but what if you increased the criminal penalties so severely that it would be equivalent to Heroin, would people still smuggle??
Has heroin, crack etc disappeared from the streets?

I'll agree that if the penalties are that stiff, people may be inclined to use cigarettes less. Heroin for example is illegal to traffic and illegal to possess. If people are going to be actively charged for possession of cigarettes, then we'd likely see a decline in use. But initially the jails will be filled with disgruntled smokers. Die hards will be smoking publicly daring the cops to arrest them. It's not going to be easy.


johnnyhandsome said:

Yes but tobacco and alcohol are 2 different things, I just dont think that tobacco is a need-to-have drug. And what if the U.S followed suit with Canada and banned cigs also then you run into a huge transportation expense just to import from Mexico or the Carribean. I just makes it too expensive.
Alcohol is not a need-to-have drug either. That was one of the main arguments for Prohibition.

Assuming it was possible to convince the US to ban cigarettes (hey, maybe GW Bush would jsut try to do something like that with his puritan views and all that), I don't think one could stop there. Something like this would likely be an amendment to NAFTA so you'd have to convince the Mexicans too. But let's say that cigarettes are declared illegal just like cocaine is. I go back to my first point that initially, people just won't go for it unless the police actively enforce the rule of law. Longer term it may be possible, but that's one mighty big hill to climb. Is it worth the effort? Why not just keep raising the taxes until people just can't afford to smoke anymore? And general social outlook is changing so that smoking is more or less unacceptable now. Pretty soon you won't be able to smoke anywhere in Toronto just like Vancouver and San Francisco.
 
WhOiSyOdAdDy? said:
funny its always the exsmokers who are the radical ones
LOL.......we are the worst, it's true!!!!

WhOiSyOdAdDy? said:
and then what should we ban next?
fast food, travel to countries that allow you to eat endangered species, maybe porn or chewing gum in public?
Fast food in moderation doesnt kill, but cigs even in moderation can and does kill. And they had better keep their hands off my porn, dammit!!!!
 
I agree with X that it would be a big hill to climb but it may someday come to fruition. Maybe not this decade but perhaps in 20 years or so.
 
I never believe you can make "sins" illegal or ban it outright.

Let me ask you, would you like to see "hobbying" illegal and ban it outright, like those Muslims countries?

The bottom line is no sane government will ban those sins like alcohol, cigarettes and gamblings outright. I can't tell for sure if the Tories like Stephen Harper takes over Canada.

Look at what happened during the prohibition. The uptight Americans ban the "sin" alcohol and the unintended consequences were creating a "monster" in the name of Al Carpone and those organized crimes syndicates.

Smart government would seize the day and milk these "cash cows" for revenue and smart investors can do that too.
 
sweet guy said:
I never believe you can make "sins" illegal or ban it outright.
Never say never.

sweet guy said:
Smart government would seize the day and milk these "cash cows" for revenue and smart investors can do that too.
Cigrarette taxes - cost of health care for lung cancer etc = Net Loss
 

Dancerfan

Oldtimer
Dec 22, 2001
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They never will ban them for one simple reason,the governments are WAY more addicted to the tax money they receive than any smoker is addicted to cigarettes!!
 
W

WhOiSyOdAdDy?

Dancerfan said:
They never will ban them for one simple reason,the governments are WAY more addicted to the tax money they receive than any smoker is addicted to cigarettes!!
actually governments have realized that they pay much more in healthcare dealing with smoking related problems than they take in from taxing cigarettes
 
Look guys, my post above and Who/Daddy make it quite clear that cig tax revenue doesnt even come close to offsetting healthcare costs such as: Lung Cancer, Heart Disease, Emphysema etc...etc.
 

xarir

Retired TERB Ass Slapper
WhOiSyOdAdDy? said:
and then what should we ban next?

fast food, travel to countries that allow you to eat endangered species, maybe porn or chewing gum in public?
I believe chewing gum is more or less illegal in Singapore. As for fast food, all the member nations of the World Health Organization (170+ countries) unanimously agreed to try to combat obesity. Target #1 will be over consumption of fast food. I'd say within a couple of years, we'll be seeing general ad / education campaigns to "minimize" that Big Mac special.
 

Keebler Elf

The Original Elf
Aug 31, 2001
14,382
8
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The Keebler Factory
The gov't doesn't have to make cigs too expensive for smokers. It just has to make them too expensive for kids. And it's working.
 
Spitting on the sidewalk is also illegal in Singapore. $1000 fine if you're caught. I wonder what the fine for being with an SP is??
 
W

WhOiSyOdAdDy?

We should take some lessons from Singapore and adopt caning in our judicial system
 

tboy

resident smartass
Aug 19, 2001
16,034
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way out in left field
Well, I could put forth the argument that there is no way to isolate 100% the costs associated with smoking. There are many external factors that cause all the afrementioned diseases.

I would put forth again, the arguement that 1000's more die of lung related illnesses cause by automobile exhaust than by cigarettes.

Will the powers that be ban cars? Not in my, or my children's lifetime......
 
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