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Thursday, November 11, 2004

Smoking bans

The Pawlenty shuffle continues: after zigging towards the right by endorsing an idea to squeeze money out of Indian tribes, the governor has now zagged towards the middle by endorsing a smoking ban.

I generally favor smoking bans, because I see it as a workplace health issue. A workplace where mercury was being blown into the air would not last very long before being shut down by OSHA, and smoke, also a carcinogen, should be no different. I believe in property rights, but there are many things that can't be owned, things like the air, water, radio spectrum, and so forth. These things by virtue of physics truly belong to the community, and should be regulated as such.

Now that Pawlenty has moved towards the center with this stance, that means his next dance step should be back towards David Strom and his ilk. I wonder what it will be.


At 11:39 PM, November 11, 2004, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually I believe he made the described move when he called for a consitiutional ammendment to raise the gas tax. Something about having people vote for or against an increase in the gas tax. No, I don't understand it and I hope you can explain it to me. Why a consitituional ammendment? Thanks.

OTH, Smoking bans are good. Minnesota should have had one years ago. There are two neighborhood bars in South Minneapolis that I will not patronize because of the smoke. In another case the Lake Street Garage usually has a handful of people in the smoking portion (which I have to walk through to get to the non-smoking section) and a full non-smoking section. Why 18% of the population dictates the air quality for the other 72% is something I can't understand. You're right, property rights should not extend to air or water quality. Thanks for letting me whine.

LM Wanderer


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