Less than a week into the new Socialist-Green coalition government, and the signs are already on the wall that it’s going to be a nightmare – with leftist Public Health ideology set to triumph over common sense and thought for the people that they represent.
Not satisfied with the continuing attempts to ban the sale of ecigs via medicinal regulation (which no ecig on earth can hope to satisfy), the new government has set its sights on another hero of tobacco harm reduction – snus.
As reported in Expressen today, Sweden is set for a tax rise. Well that’s hardly surprising for a group of Socialist parties, you might think. And you’d be right. There will be many tax rises. But this is a tax rise that they specifically and vocally ruled out in their shadow budget last year.
While cigarette tax is set to rise by 6%, these bright sparks have decided that snus tax will rise by 12%.
This batshit crazy policy will cause harm – as some people might decide to choose to smoke, instead of using a product that is so much safer that it isn’t just in a different ballpark, it’s a different sport altogether.
Such policies aren’t simply the brainchild of a deranged government, however. They are the direct result of these countries signing up to the FCTC – which is in turn used by raving hordes of prohibitionists to blackmail & bully the public, the media and most significantly the politicians, into anti-tobacco policies that rarely, if ever, put the health of the public in focus.
The result is that in Tobacco Control circles a tax rise – any tax rise – is “a good thing”, irrespective of the potential effects of such a rise. Whether that’s an increase in smuggling, increases in poverty amongst tobacco users, or in this case the potential for increasing the amount of people smoking lit tobacco.
I’ll leave you with his graph – the retail price of snus versus cigarettes. For your reference, Sweden signed the FCTC in July 2005.