Budget NIC rise is an attack on aspiration

I am suffering from a slipped disc and sciatica at the moment, but I am lucky. Not lucky to be in so much pain, but to be employed. What is more, I also (mainly) work from home, so I don’t have a tiresome commute each morning and evening. I also benefit from all the protections of being employed such as paid annual leave and sick pay Continue reading

Another vaping ban on the cards in the United States

In August last year, I wrote about a meeting of the Allegheny County Board of Health which held a public hearing to help decide if there should be a ban on the indoor use of e-cigarettes in public places. Here is an extract: Continue reading

Will Remoaners moan forever?

When we were preparing for the EU Referendum campaign, I said that to win, we have to be unremittingly positive. Leave “Project Fear” to the other side, because we knew that is how they would prosecute the campaign. When Simon Richards, Rory Broomfield, and I toured the country giving speeches and taking part in debates, we kept to that brief – we are Better Off Out of the European Union. Continue reading

Fun in the Pleasure Zone

This campaign has received some criticism in the past from Simon Clark, director of Forest, for appearing to throw smokers out with the bathwater in favour of vapers' rights. I can assure him that this is not the case. The Freedom Organisation for the Right to Enjoy Smoking Tobacco, to give Forest its full title, rightly stands up for smokers' rights against a barrage of nanny state and illiberal policies emanating from the Government and the Government's friends in ASH. I, on behalf of The Freedom Association, have regularly taken to the airwaves to criticise, for example, the silly ban on smoking in cars with under-18s present. The ban is unenforceable, as is the silly suggestion that smoking is banned on Brighton beach. We have campaigned against the plain packaging of cigarettes which, ironically, will mean it is easier to sell counterfeit cigarettes. It is a policy that is damaging to public health, yet those who advocated plain packaging appeared not to appreciate the irony. Continue reading

Watching the Lords debate Brexit was like intruding on private grief

Watching and listening to the second reading debate of the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill in the House of Lords over the past couple of days was like intruding on private grief. For the most part, their Lordships were engaged a in wake, and those of us who campaigned for Leave in the referendum last year were not welcome. Continue reading