Wednesday, 11 January 2012

The Mafia would like to thank health campaigners and social activists for making them even richer!

Those who advocate prohibition, ‘denormalisation’ and the state punishment of selected lifestyle sins continue their campaigns:

Setting aside whether a liberal society should indulge in these bans, controls and zealous regulation, there is a massive downside to such actions. A downside that ‘campaigners’ never mention. And it looks like this:

According to a new report by Italian anti-crime group SOS Impresa, as reported by Reuters, "Organised crime has tightened its grip on the Italian economy during the economic crisis, making the Mafia the country's biggest "bank" and squeezing the life out of thousands of small firms, according to a report on Tuesday."

The Italian Mafia has over 65 billion Euro in liquid assets.

You don’t get the connection with the nannying fussbuckets who want to dictate how you live your life? Let me explain – starting with:

The high tax-induced price of tobacco products in the UK has led to many smokers seeking alternative cheaper sources of cigarettes and handrolling tobacco (HRT), both legal (duty-free and crossborder shopping) and illegal (smuggling and bootlegging). The TMA estimates that in 2009 this non-UK duty paid consumption (NUKDP) accounted for 21% of the cigarettes and 58% of the HRT smoked in the UK.

Seizures of contraband alcohol smuggled from France have surged to around three times their normal levels this summer, say officials. French customs officers in the Channel ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer confiscated 82,000 litres of illegal spirits in the past month.

The use of loan sharks is increasing and going to "get worse", according to experts in the South West. The Bristol-based Illegal Money Lending Team claims it is already a serious problem across the region. Spokesman Alan Evans said they were "really concerned" and that with harder times ahead "this problem will get worse". Since its launch three years ago the team has recorded a 700% increase in referrals which are still growing.

I’m sure the picture is becoming clearer – the Mafia (or for that matter any other organised crime group) gets its money from a willingness to trade in things we’ve banned, to smuggle so as to avoid taxes and to fill gaps in the market created when honest providers are forced out by legal changes.

Organised crime is the biggest beneficiary from high tobacco taxes, from strict controls on drink and from restrictions on gambling or lending. And criminals, unlike legitimate businesses, don’t care if you get hurt – so we’ll get dangerous fake cigarettes, poisonous vodka and loan repayments enforced with a baseball bat rather than a court order.

So next time you think a ban or a new tax is a good thing, consider the Mafia. Ask yourself how much money criminals will make from your proposal.

And then don’t do it.


1 comment:

Pat Nurse MA said...

Funny you should mention this. I was watching Once Upon A Time In America last night about gangsters who got rich during Prohibition - and how they were out of work once Prohibition ended.

Sadly our Govt, nor any other in the western world, appear to have much say on health issues enforced upon the rest of us by nameless, faceless, unaccountable, NGOs in the UN and EU wokring, it seems, for fake charities, and the Big Corporate interests of Big Pharma which really doesn't care if people get ill from an unregulated product because it brings them even more custom.

The new generation of blackmarketeers are already celebrating and they are getting prepared. They will get hugely wealthy and violent crime will rocket once plain packaging comes in, the tobacco display ban, and minimum pricing. Just wait and see and watch smokers and drinkers get the blame - for err - being consumers of the legal product.

For the first time since my childhood in the mid 60s, children will be exposed to harmful tobacco without restrictions offered by criminal gangs working on estates instead of the local shopkeeper.

All the good work done so far by tobacco control has failed to protect my grandchildren in the same way it protected my children.

They should be ashamed - and we should have an independent investigation into how they over ride the democratic process to enforce socially and economically damaging ideology.

Public Health campaigning at present is Hate Campaigning if you strip away the propaganda and see that few, if any, claims of the anti-smoking lobby are true.