“Stupid citizens don’t get it…. Say it louder!”

Anti-smoking activists in Australia are angry because graphic photos of diseases caused by smoking (rotting foot shots and that sort of thing) will only cover roughly 60% of the package surface, under a new law. They’re angry because they feel that a bigger warning on the front was crucial in punching the health message through.

Got that? They’ve told the citizenry that smoking is bad for you, but people still smoke. Therefore, the anti-smoking crusaders’ natural impulse is that if they say it again, and louder this time, the stupid smokers will realize that they just aren’t supposed to smoke, and will stop.

This is a perfect example of a common problem among liberal activists. They so believe in the the truth of their argument that they think that anybody who disagrees with them must simply not have heard them. It simply can’t be possible for a person to know that cigarettes are bad for you, and still chose to smoke.

It gets better:

Prominent anti-smoking groups yesterday accused the Government of bowing to tobacco industry lobbying and raised questions about political donations to the Government.[…]

Every time someone takes a cigarette out of a pack, they will see the warnings, [Parliamentary Secretary for Health Trish Worth] said. I think this is a very, very powerful message.[…]

Quit Victoria executive director Todd Harper said the decision was extremely puzzling and disappointing. The tobacco industry have got what they wanted, he said.

Actually, if the industry had gotten what they wanted, these pains-in-the-arse would be required to leave them the hell alone and let people smoke in peace. As for Ms. Worth’s prediction, I’m guessing that Australia is going to see a sharp upswing in the sale of cigarette cases.

Update: Den Beste said it …. um… beste:

When someone tries to use a strategy which is dictated by their ideology, and that strategy doesn’t seem to work, then they are caught in something of a cognitive bind. If they acknowledge the failure of the strategy, then they would be forced to question their ideology. If questioning the ideology is unthinkable, then the only possible conclusion is that the strategy failed because it wasn’t executed sufficiently well. They respond by turning up the power, rather than by considering alternatives. (This is sometimes referred to as escalation of failure.)

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