Saturday, July 11, 2009

Ban on tobacco urged in military??? WTF?

"By Gregg Zoroya, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON — Pentagon health experts are urging Defense Secretary Robert Gates to ban the use of tobacco by troops and end its sale on military property, a change that could dramatically alter a culture intertwined with smoking.

Jack Smith, head of the Pentagon's office of clinical and program policy, says he will recommend that Gates adopt proposals by a federal study that cites rising tobacco use and higher costs for the Pentagon and Department of Veterans Affairs as reasons for the ban."

You have GOT to be fucking kidding me! We make up bullshit reasons to go to war with Iraq and send our soldiers into a meat grinder, we get over 4,000 of them killed dead, tens of thousands of others maimed and wounded and these fucktards want to take their cigarettes away from them?

These soldiers, regardless of why they were sent into harms way, are risking their fucking lives 24/7, being ripped away from their families, being forced to stay in the military past the end of their enlistment, being re-deployed over and over again and we're going to take that as an opportunity to help them quit smoking? Really?

That's beyond shenanigans and bullshit. That's just fucking stupid and it's spitting in the faces of our troops.

Look, I quit smoking almost 3 years ago. In fact, on July 31st it will be exactly 3 years. I'm glad I did it. Smartest thing I ever did and I've never had the urge to start smoking again. But unlike some folks, I did not become a born-again anti-smoking Nazi. I don't give a flying fuck at a rolling donut whether other people smoke or not. I'm not a smoke free zealot and I think businesses should be able to choose whether they want to allow smoking or not. I let my smoking friends smoke in my house. I even keep an ash tray around for them. Because I'm a tolerant person and a good host.

But I'll tell you what. If you were to pick me up, strap 90 pounds of armor and equipment on me, send me into a live firefight in 110 degree heat with bullets whizzing by me, explosions going off, people around me being ripped apart and killed, after it was over and I realized I was still alive, I bet a cigarette would taste pretty fucking good! After a couple of good smokes I'd worry about shovelling the shit out of my pants and puking up everything I'd eaten in the past 12 years.

Taking cigarettes away from fighting soldiers is the sort of thing that could only be conceived of by fat-assed academics sitting in air conditioned offices who think they are being protected by the 70 year old security guard at the front desk of their building.

"One in three service members use tobacco, the report says, compared with one in five adult Americans. The heaviest smokers are soldiers and Marines, who have done most of the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, the study says. About 37% of soldiers use tobacco and 36% of Marines. Combat veterans are 50% more likely to use tobacco than troops who haven't seen combat."

GEE! Ya fucking think? Who saw that coming? Jesus Fucking Christ, people.

"The military complicates attempts to curb tobacco use by subsidizing tobacco products for troops who buy them at base exchanges and commissaries, says Kenneth Kizer, a committee member and architect of California's anti-tobacco program.

Seventy percent of profits from tobacco sales — $88 million in 2005 — pays for recreation and family support programs, the study stays."

So by banning tobacco, not only are we depriving the fighting soldiers who are protecting OUR FREEDOM of one of the extremely few ways they have to deal with the stress we thrust them into, but we are also harming their families back home by cutting funding for their support.

You know what? Not only should tobacco NOT be banned, not only should the military continue to subsidize tobacco products at the BX/PXs, but any soldier who chooses to smoke should receive gift wrapped cartons at regular intervals with a card hand-signed by the president.

Anytime a soldier pulls out a cigarette, their commanding officer (or the nearest U.S. citizen) should rush to their side like a tip-hungry bartender, whip out a solid gold lighter and light that soldiers cigarette while reminding them that the American people appreciate their sacrifice.

If our soldiers want to smoke, let them smoke. I think they've earned the right to do as they please.


The DLC said...

God bless you sir.

m.v. said...

Bush wouldn't have done it obviously because he was on tobacco payroll and hates soldiers. You voted for someone who wants to stick it to evil businesses and loves soldiers more than he loves himself (because he smokes). Why the outrage.

Old Fart said...

My extremely sarcastic take on it from yesterday.

We've found more common ground. Before ya know it, we'll be singing kumbaya.

Nick said...


I'm old enough that when I went RA the first time around cigarettes were part of the C-rats. Usually something like Lucky Stikes or - later on when the miltary started making new C-rats instead of feeding us leftovers from Korea and, yes, WWII - Marlboros: 5 to a pack...

The Big Green Machine could care less about the troops' health. If that were true, they wouldn't be stuffing them with dexedrine, starting in WWII and continuing through to today. If they gave a shit, they would ban sale and consumption of alchohol on base.

What seems to be driving this, more than anything, is the insurance industry. After obesity - which accounts for 90% of all coronary diseases, as well as majority of the Type 2 diabetes in this country - comes lung cancer as a leading cause of death. And it's an expensive death.

The Administration seems to be taking away from the ian. cos. with one hand (health care reform) and giving back to them with the other hand (policies on tobacco; the insurance companies only want to take your money, not pay it out...

Anonymous said...

good rant XO.

Xavier Onassis said...

m.v. - This has nothing to do with Bush or Obama or Democrat or Republican. It has to do with treating our troops right.

We pay them shit.

We house them in shit.

We give them shit for benefits when they come back home.

Now we want to tell them that while they are risking their lives for our freedom they can't smoke?

That's fucked up.

If I had the means, I would load a C5A Galaxy ( as much tobacco as it would hold ( and make weekly flights to Baghdad and invite the soldiers to take as much as they could smoke for free.

Ole Blue The Heretic said...

Well said. The military has to put up with enough BS all ready.

I Travel for JOOLS said...

Get ready for the reengineering of America courtesy of raving left wing lunatics. This is just the beginning.

Anonymous said...

XO, if the war was bullshit to begin with, Obama should get us OUT!

But the plans don't even call for us all being out until Dec. of 11, after most of his first term.


The troops who die NOW die for OBAMA.

Anonymous said...

By the way, I don't really feel that sorry for the troops.

They signed up to kill on government orders.

They chose.

They weren't drafted.

Oh, you can say it was a financial choice, or to get college aid, or some such crap, but if thats true then it just means they they were willing to blow up women and kids to get cash.

Who ya kiddin, XO?

Anonymous said...

Kiss a dick. Anon posters suck ass.

emawkc said...

I actually agree with you on this, XO. I know I've said that before, but this time I'm sincere.

It's not the governments place to force you not to smoke, or to wear a helmet when you ride your Harley, or to wear your seat belt when your in your car.

Unfortunately as we allow, hell beg, the government to run more and more of our lives, this is what we'll get.

The treatment of the troops is the best argument there is against socialized medicine. From Gulf War Disease to Walter Reed to this smoking ban, if this is what we have for America's heroes, just think of the treatment that's in story for the rest of us.

You can say goodbye to your rare porterhouse, baked potato and small batch bourbon, XO. The government is here to protect you from yourself.

emawkc said...

And yes, Anon posters are pricks with no balls.

Anonymous said...

I have been a frequent lurker here and don't always agree with your point of view, but you are SPOT ON here. Well said.