Рефераты. Essay on the article Tobacco and Tolerance: Blowing smoke (о вреде курения)

Essay on the article Tobacco and Tolerance: Blowing smoke (о вреде курения)

Международный институт экономики и финансов,1 курс,

Высшая Школа Экономики.

on the article “Tobacco and Tolerance: Blowing smoke”.

Not only labour made man differ from a monkey, but also care and

attention to his fellow creatures. This is the main point of human

relations and the basis of human being. Animals are first of all

competitors with each other, and they do not have an instinct to help their

neighbours and to think about their safety. The only exception is their own


Similarly, as a father and mother take care of a small child who does

not yet have his own opinion on what is good and what is bad, who do not

even know, that many seemingly innocent things harm his health greatly and

cause strong addiction. Even when a child realises that, it is very hard

for him to make the right decision. And if we consider such thing as

smoking, the only right decision is not to start it. One may argue that

whether to smoke or not is the private decision of every person and no one

might impose his point of view to someone. I agree with this statement, but

not always this principle provides us with a solution to the problem of

social wellbeing. People make a lot of decisions connected with great risks

like motorcycle riding, parachute jumping, smoking, taking drugs and so on.

Some of these things have unalterable consequences, which make people

regret they have made these decisions during the rest of their lives. The

only thing they should ask themselves is whether this thing is worth

risking. The fewer would be the number of activities that greatly harm

human health, and above all, of these, which are not worth risking like

smoking, the better it would be for the health of all humanity. The

exceptions are such things as scuba diving or mountain climbing and other,

because they can be justified from many reasons and they are not simple and

stupid self-poisoning. I do not agree with the author of the article

“Tobacco and Tolerance: Blowing smoke” that smoking is not a social problem

but a private one and the anti-smoking program should be minimized. Those

people, who have already started and have become addicted to ‘the grayish-

blue fumes’ can’t fully realize, why do they take this great risk, still

acknowledging that this harms their health, and it is hard for them to give

up smoking without outside help. For this noble purpose there should always

exist those people who can clearly realize this enormous threat as third

persons with their unaddicted minds. They should never stop such hard and

unappreciated occupations as different anti-smoke programs and, whether

smokers want it or not, they should try to pull them out of this ‘gray and

poisonous swamp’. This can be done by different government merciless

limitations of tobacco producing companies, tobacco advertisements,

restricting places for smoking to minimum and so on. That is why smoking is

a problem of the whole society, despite some of its members think that it

is not, because healthy persons form a healthy society.

Smoking causes (or, if someone would be lucky, it might cause) many

different illnesses like lung and mouth cancer, heart disease, oral cavity.

In general, the risk of developing a tobacco-related cancer depends on the

intensity of the habit as determined by a duration of the smoking habit, a

number of cigarettes smoked per day, a tar content of the cigarette, and

the depth of inhalation. Cigarette smoking is not only related to the

development of lung cancer but also affects the development of cancer of

the bladder, oral cavity, and esophagus. A non-smoker’s inhalation of smoke

produced by smokers in an enclosed space also appears to heighten the risk

of developing lung cancer. That is why the problem of passive smoking is

also very actual and to avoid harmful consequences, governments of all

countries ought to enlarge the development of a program of making isolated

places for smokers to enjoy their dangerous toys without any harm to other


After the major medical revelations about smoking during the 1950s and

'60s there was an increasing attempt to lessen the influence of tobacco

advertising in several countries. Cigarette manufacturers in Canada agreed

to end television advertising in 1972 after a bill to effect that end was

passed in the Commons. In West Germany television advertising of cigarettes

was to be phased out by the end of 1972.And as a result, the rate of

smoking in America has declined from more than 40% to about 25% and the

number of ex-smokers has trebled. This was the great victory of anti-

smoking programs.

In fact, a tobacco-producing industry is very profitable, and of course,

these companies try to find or sometimes to invent some evidences and

reasons why people need to use their harmful production. I believe that the

anti-smoking programs cause great losses to them, and someday they will

succeed and it would not be profitable for producers to continue operating

any more.

Figure 1 shows that the demand curve for tobacco production is very

inelastic, because it is highly addictive and has no close substitutes.

Buyers could not reject a considerable amount of it in response to a large

increase in price.

In figure 2 we see the situation after the government’s imposition of a

sales tax. The new Supply curve will shift upwards on the amount of tax.

And because the demand for tobacco production is inelastic, this will

increase total revenue of a producer. This indirect tax would not become

his profit and all the additional money received would be considered as

costs and go directly to the government.

(TR1= q*p TR2= Q*P)

Figure 3 shows us the situation where the government sets a price ceiling


tobacco production, which would result in slightly higher demand but lower

quantity produced, as it would not be beneficial for a producer to operate

at the previous production level. If this price ceiling would be set at P

lower than 2 (the lowest price, at which a firm will be willing to

produce), than these firms would not operate at all, because their costs

would be greater than revenues.

Smoking also has great negative externalities. This is passive smoking,

which is said to be even more harmful than the ‘active one’. Especially

children fall under the thread of this problem whose parents are chain-


In the figure 4 we see private demand DD and supply SS with free market

equilibrium at E and eqiul. quantity Q. With a negative consumption

externality , the social marginal benefit is DD1 lying below DD. E* is the

socially efficient point at which output is Q*. At this output the marginal

externality is E*F. By levying this tax of exactly E*F

per unit, the government can shift the private supply curve from SS to SS1

leading to a new equilibrium at F at which the socially efficient quantity


is produced and the dead-weight burden of the externality E*HE is


Although it is not possible to stop a tobacco industry immediately, the

models above show how the government could decrease its harmful influence

and consequences. For example, the money that it receives from taxation

could be spent on the improvement of different rehabilitation centres for

ex-smokers or on the development of anti-smoking program and


In conclusion, I believe that in any case, smoking IS one of social

problems and despite some people considering it to be like motorcycle

riding or other risky occupation, it is not worth totally risking. The

conscious part of humanity ought to help smokers to give up this habit by

trying to restrict smoking by all means. Then there would be one social

problem less.

Moreover, smoking is a great fraud of all humanity. If, for example, you

comb you hand in some place for many years day after day, this would first

become your habit and second- this would give you an inexplicable pleasure.

If you held a match in your mouth or crunch the tail-end of your pen for

many years, this would also result in these things. Thus smoking provides

us with the same “virtues”, and all people, particularly at an early age,

previously pretending to each other, that smoking is a sort of pleasure and

relaxation for them, start getting pleasure just from the fact they have

got addicted years later. This stupidity came out of tobacco producing

companies, which made a fetish of a considerable part of humanity from an

old Indian ritual tradition.

P.S. Five packets of cigarettes were smoked while writing this essay… (











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