Monday, July 16, 2012
President Obama on the Passing of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009
"And today, despite decades of lobbying and advertising by the tobacco industry, we've passed a law to protect the next generation of Americans from growing up with a deadly habit that so many of our generation (raise your hand, Mr. Obama) have lived with."............Alright, I'll give him about a half-truth on this one. Yes, a lot of the tobacco companies in fact DID lobby against this legislation. But the largest one of all, Philip Morris (approximately 50% of all the cigarettes sold in America) and its parent company, Altria, didn't just endorse the legislation, it also lobbied hard for it (not just in 2009, but also in 2004 when it was initially crafted and voted on). Why, you ask? Easy, Philip Morris was already doing a lot of the testing that this legislation required and any new industry regulations would disproportionately impose greater costs on the smaller firms. The bill also significantly puts new limits on advertising and this, too, disproportionately hampers the smaller companies (everybody already knows about Marlboro).............Look, I have no great love for the tobacco companies and I personally detest cigarettes. But this is yet another example of government regulation disproportionately helping the big boys (i.e., those who can more readily afford the high cost of compliance) and disproportionately hurting the smaller fellows. Hey, maybe those idiots down in D.C. need to think a little before they act next time. That would be my suggestion.