Government oppression and crime is everywhere – taxes, bailouts, murder, theft, speed limits, regulations, etc. One doesn’t have to look for examples anymore as the state will bring the crap right to your door (sometimes through it, warrant or not). My dear cigar industry friends are in the middle of yet another example of government overreach.
The FDA is about to start lowering the premium cigar business into the grave. Diane Katz explains:
The premium cigar market is populated by limited-edition products and seasonal blends, and most of the small businesses that produce them don’t have the $1 million or more that the FDA estimates it will cost to comply with the regulations. At the same time, the agency concedes that the benefits of the new rules “are difficult to quantify” and it “cannot predict the size of these benefits.”
What is particularly nonsensical is that these artisan products are not the target of the FDA’s latest regulatory crackdown, which is actually aimed at combating teen smoking and the popularization of e-cigarettes (despite the fact that subjecting e-cigarettes to the new regulations will hurt public health far more than protect it).
Indeed, hand-rolled premium cigars are not mass-produced and sold in convenience stores, nor do they contain the flavor additives that attract young smokers these days. They also aren’t meant to be inhaled. According to industry representatives, the market share of premium cigars is a mere 2 percent of all cigars sold each year in the United States. The typical consumer — an adult male — smokes only two premium cigars a week.
Even the FDA concedes that people who smoke cigars exclusively have a lower risk for many smoking-related diseases compared with cigarette smokers, as documented in the 2014 Surgeon General’s Report.
The FDA did consider excluding premium cigars in its proposed regulation. But that option was dropped in the final rule — reportedly at the behest of cigarette manufacturers that would rather the government squelch competition.
One need not like cigars or even approve of tobacco use to recognize that the new regulations are misguided and excessive. That’s all too common now that America is transforming from a land of liberty into an administrative state. Were Julius Caeser Newton to land here today, he never could have built his business. Legislation is pending to exempt premium cigar makers from the FDA’s latest power grab. There is no excuse for Congress not to approve it.
Actually, Diane, there’s just no excuse for Congress. There’s no excuse for the FDA nor any justification for its existence.
Cigar lovers, think of the FDA as a giant City Hall. The old saying goes, “You can’t fight city hall.” The old saying is wrong. City hall has been fought and has been beaten before, destroyed in fact. Consider the plight of Marvin Heemeyer. Heemeyer was oppressed by local criminal officials in Granby, Colorado. They stole and stole and stole; Heemeyer was left with no recourse. The disaffected business owner said, “I was always willing to be reasonable until I had to be unreasonable … Sometimes reasonable men must do unreasonable things.”
Heemeyer tried the official route. He petitioned, he appealed, he campaigned – all to no avail. He suspected local officials and gangsters were in cahoots against him; subsequent investigations confirmed this suspicion.
Then Heemeyer got unreasonable (really he got REASONABLE, if you think about it). He fought city hall – with an armored bulldozer. He “won” his case by running over city hall, the police station, several other government buildings, and a corrupt local business. The police, even the S.W.A.T. team, was powerless to stop him. Knowing the National Guard was coming for him with heavy weapons he got reckless and thus met his end. Still he remains an American hero.
Heemeyer’s revenge. Wikipedia.
They don’t make a bulldozer big enough for the FDA’s enormous campus on New Hampshire Ave. Still, there must be some other reasonable actions we can consider in answer to the government’s unreasonable actions. If we choose to be unreasonable, to be unfree, we consent to live as serfs. I wonder if Heemeyer had a cigar in that tank?