Capitol Hill Crooks

Capitol Hill Crooks

We’ve elected a bunch of robbers, crooks, pickpockets and thieves to run this nations government and I’m fuming mad about it. I would normally say "our government" but those days are over, this government doesn’t represent me.

How could they represent us, while hurting our children and making our lives unbearable? Last week I sent my husband to the store for a carton of cigarettes and got the shock of my life when he came home saying they cost us $47 and some change. Now I find that my "habit" is going to cost my family another 60 cents a pack, on top of the last increase starting today.

Gee, this makes me wish that I had decided to become a heroin addict all those years ago, when I first started smoking. If I were hooked on smack I could get treated for free, compliments of our benevolent government — free needles, free methadone, what a deal.

However, since I’m a cigarette smoker I get blamed for the problems of the entire nation. Not only am I restricted as to where and when I can smoke, I also get to pay everyone’s health care costs. That part really sticks in my craw because we don’t even have medical coverage — we can’t afford it.

I can’t even get dental work done because I can’t find a dentist willing to give me an estimate, because we pay cash money. Isn’t that rich? Anyone know of an honest dentist? Is there such a thing?

While technically, I can afford to keep smoking, why on earth would I do that to my family? While we manage to get away for a quick two-day trip away from home every few months, it’s been years since we’ve been able to afford a real honest to goodness vacation. My son has never been to Great America, Disneyland, Sea World, the San Diego Zoo, etc. and it’s doubtful he’ll be visiting there any time soon.

I have been working up to quitting since California passed their so-called "fire safe cigarette" (FSC) law, requiring banded papers on all cigarettes sold in this state. Of course like many I’ve been able to get around this law by purchasing real cigarettes in Nevada. The trip to Nevada was no hardship, especially when the trip could be topped off with a visit to the Carson Nugget, which has the best Seafood Buffet (Comstock Buffet), anywhere.

At least I could feel good about supporting the Indian Smoke Shop, especially since I’m part Blackfoot Indian.

When I discovered RJ Reynolds sold us smokers out, and announced they would convert all production over to FSC cigarettes by the end of 2009, that was my queue that it was time to quit. Just how long will it be before the other cigarette manufacturers follow suit?

Since I began smoking them my chest hurts, I cough constantly; I’m having chest pains, daily and other symptoms that I believe are all related to the change. Almost makes me want to continue smoking them, just so I can sue the pants off someone.

I just hope those red nosed baboons on Capitol Hill, who congratulate themselves by toasting their cheap booze, while sticking it to us smokers, get their just due. I have no doubt they will. I’ve heard from every non-smoker on the planet just how bad cigarette smoking is but I can tell you first-hand the cost of drinking. Every man in my immediate family has died in their early 40’s as a direct result.

You can look at all those red noses and see just who has a drinking problem and who doesn’t and that my friend is why taxes on alcohol remain low and no other reason.

For the rest of us, we must remember to lock our doors because the crime rate is going to double in the very near future. This tax hike is going to cost our children more than any of us can imagine.


Most low-income families are already living in crisis mode, they are budgeting every single dollar. When in crisis mode a smoker will smoke more to handle the stress, not less. Increasing the cost of tobacco is going to put so much pressure on families that are already close to the breaking point that many will snap.

When I was in my early adult years they doubled the cost of cigarettes, taking them from 75 cents to more than $1.50, people were angry and desperate. My husband and I were both smokers, unemployed and past desperate. I can recall walking along the road, next to all the parked cars in the middle of the night, checking door handles.

We were looking for an unlocked car, not so that we could steal the car or even any money found inside; we were looking for cigarettes. Sad but true!

If you ask me, America is about to become one angry place to live and rightly so.

I’ve always thought that Jimmy Carter was the worst president in our nations history but Obama in his two very-long months in office has already beat out Carter for that title.

So far, people seem to be taking the price increase in stride. Everyone I’ve spoke with is quitting — no one has actually managed to quit yet, so we shall see. At any rate, the lie that this increase tax on cigarettes will balance the budget is just a fantasy. I bought one last carton, then I’m done — I smoked just 8 yesterday, down from my normal 25-30 cigarettes.

Am I the only quitter?

~Sally Sunshine

Smokers Attrition

The liberal leaning states of New York and California led the pack, passing legislation banning non-self-extinguishing cigarettes; many other states are in the process of following their heavy-handed lead.

The state of Illinois will require all cigarettes sold in the state to be self-extinguishing after Jan. 1, 2008. Both Colorado and Iowa are considering passing similar bills. What voters may not realize is they are being hoodwinked. I’m not certain at this point what the monetary motivation is. I do know that “safety” is not the reason behind the push for selling these killer cigarettes.

I supposed this is one way to rid the country of smokers because these cigarettes will kill us off, slowly, one-by-one. The premise behind the push for these so-called self-extinguishing cigarettes is that the cigarette will go out when it is dropped or sitting in an ashtray, and therefore not ignite a careless home fire.

The problem is — well the problem with these cigarettes are numerous. They don’t go out when they sit in an ashtray, but they do go out while you are holding them. In order to keep them lit you have to suck like a baby on a bottle with a teeny-tiny hole that won’t allow the milk to pass through.

California’s self-extinguishing cigarette law went into effect in January. I can’t sleep at night because I’ve got the granddaddy of smokers’ coughs. Each night when I lay down to sleep it starts. I’ve been smoking for many years (29) and I’ve never had a cough like this in my life.

I didn’t put two and two together, until I had the opportunity to pick up some cigarettes recently while visiting family in Nevada. Low and behold – after smoking only one pack of "regular" cigarettes, my cough was gone but as soon as I started smoking California regulated cigarettes the cough was back in full force.

Which brings me to the next problem; the cigarettes burn unevenly. In attempts to keep the cigarette lit, without blowing out my lungs, I’ve tried relighting it with a lighter, only to have it flare up and almost scorch my eye browse. Many times the paper bands around the cigarette refuse to burn off and end up landing on me causing me to burn my fingers and sometimes even my clothing.

I’ve put more holes in my clothes since California passed this menacing law than I did when I was first learning to smoke. It’s down right painful, not to mention embarrassing.

These new "banded" cigarettes are a health hazard to smokers, causing unnecessary burns, chest pains, uncontrollable coughing jags and should be permanently banned. Voters in states consider implementing these horrid cigarettes should think twice before they further endanger their health. It’s bad enough we are told everyday how smoking is bad for us by every self-important well-meaning non-smoker on the face of the planet, and now they seem hell-bent on making it so.

I have a choice to make:

  • I can spend years trying to fight this new law;
  • I can attempt to bring a class action lawsuit against the state of California;
  • I can move to a new state that doesn’t force banded cigarettes on their citizens; or
  • I can break the law and go to a neighboring state to purchase my cigarettes, risking jail and/or a fine.

These are tough choices; one I shouldn’t be forced into making.

Vote NO on "banded" or "self-extinguishing" cigarette laws being legislated in your state. The life you save could be your own.