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Puff of smoke

Michael Kinsley has no problem with Barack Obama if the President elect feels the need to smoke a occasional cigarette.

If Obama actually has accomplished the miracle of giving up cigarettes at the apogee of a presidential race, he should be happy to let us know this and add to his superman image. And if he hasn't? Well, if he is straight with us about it, we should forgive him. So he's not a superman. Neither are we. In a democracy, that is a good thing for ruler and ruled to know they have in common. Furthermore, as presidential vices go, this one is not near the top. As for being a role model for youths, Obama's good habits outweigh this single bad one. He's great on hydration, apparently.


Another question is what effect a president desperate for a cigarette and trying to quit might have on your life expectancy and mine. Obama's steely calm is now one of our country's major assets. If he needs an occasional cigarette to preserve it, let's hand him an ashtray, offer him a light and look the other way.

My mother died of lung cancer when she was 53. She was a two pack a day smoker who couldn't give up the habit even after part of one lung removed at age 50. I've never even taken one puff on a cigarette. Like my neglect to watch television reality shows like 'Survivor', I hope to maintain that record to the grave.

BTW, Leonita and allow no cigarette smoking in the house. We only have one or two friends who do it anyway.

Personal feelings aside, I could care less if Obama smokes or not. It is his body to poison, and I don't see him setting an example one way or the other.

Doug at Below the Beltway writes-

In the long run, whether or not Obama smokes every now and then isn't that big a deal.

Incidentally, if Obama is still a smoker, we would have yet another West Wing parallel; you may recall that Jed Bartlett was known to bum a smoke from reporters and Secret Service Agents.

I watched TWW also and don't recall Bartlett smoking as Doug describes but could be wrong. Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan would ask his secreatary or anyone who was convenient for a cigarette after the one-time CIA analyst got promoted to the Presidency at the end of 'Debt of Honor'.


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Comments (13)

My father was a severe anti... (Below threshold)

My father was a severe anti-smoker who died from lung cancer same as noted opera-diva Beverly Sills.

My point isn't about smoking, my point is about the erroneous perception that not smoking will prevent lung cancer.

It quite possiblity may be a genetic thing, even if your mother never smoked she may have died from lung cancer anyway and, very much like breast cancer, her off-spring might possibily follow in her genetic footprint.

Other than car wreaks, it appears the evidence is showing that most of stuff which kills us genetic.

Two people I know, one a ne... (Below threshold)

Two people I know, one a neighbor next door, died of lung cancer. Neither of them ever smoked.

I do hope Obama has to go outside on the loading dock to smoke like other government workers. Smoking is banned in all government buildings.

I am reminded that the othe... (Below threshold)

I am reminded that the other Messiah cast out the money changers from the temple. Generations of the religious set have deliberately ignored this sin for two thousand years.

A smoking Messiah should be forgivable as long as he is a liberal. I suspect that it will be treated much like FDR's paralysis and philandering of JFK and Bill Clinton. As long as the press scrupulously ignores it, there's no problem. And you can count on the press ignoring it. The liberals will still find an excuse to wag the finger of shame and taxability at everybody else who still smokes.

PS: I quit two years ago ou... (Below threshold)

PS: I quit two years ago out of contempt for Cook County, Illinois, the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, Congress, and the American Bar Association. Not to mention a nation of whining, complaining non-smokers. Screw them all (I guess that includes some of you guys, too). I'm not going to pay that kind of money to listen to everybody take a free sanctimonious shot at me every time the topic comes up.

Since when is Obama our "ru... (Below threshold)

Since when is Obama our "ruler"? Kinsley takes to subservience like a duck to water.

There was an episode in the... (Below threshold)

There was an episode in the West Wing where Bartlett was in a Cathedral for a funeral service for his long time secretary.

At the end of the service he asked the Secret Service to clear the church and he went into a vicious monologue at God. At the end he pulled out a cigarette, lit it up, took one puff and then stamped it out with his foot on the cathedral alter.

Yes, what is this talk of "... (Below threshold)

Yes, what is this talk of "the ruler and the ruled?" This isn't the first time someone has used those words. That is politically incorrect. Like, literally.

Also, I think it's hilarious that Obama being "good about hydration" outweighs a smoking habit to this guy. That's plain silly. Personally I don't care if he smokes, but trying to call it anything other than a bad habit is just pathetic.

Wow, if, after four years, ... (Below threshold)

Wow, if, after four years, the worst thing Obama has done is to light up a few cigarettes, then his will have been the most successful presidency in the nation's history.

Screw him. I quit a month a... (Below threshold)

Screw him. I quit a month ago. Dear Leader Barry shitstain can go pound sand up his treasonous ass~!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Smoking does cause cancer. ... (Below threshold)

Smoking does cause cancer. Lung Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Head and Neck cancer, Pancreatic cancer, and more. There are some folks who gets these cancers without smoking, but a whole lot more do who do smoke, or breath second hand smoke. Radon, air pollution, asbestos, chemical compounds also do the same. Some people are genetically more susceptible to smoking and other carcinogens, but no one appears immune to them.

Smoking kills many more people by heart attack, stroke and emphysema than cancer. A lot more. More than die from auto accidents. More than die of war (at least for now).

Apologists are acting as propagandists. You enable smokers to continue with false or illogical justifications for their self-destructive behavior. Shame.

Screw you and your little d... (Below threshold)

Screw you and your little dog, too, Epador. It's not up to you to make people who still smoke feel shitty. Who gave you permission to do that, anyway? They'll quit when they realize they need to. They get to decide to do that by themselves.

How 'bout you wag your pompous finger at drinkers for a change? Nobody ever does that, although alcohol abuse causes more fatalities per year than cigarettes. The reason you don't is that it isn't trendy. You don't get a free shot a drinkers. But it's somehow acceptable to insult strangers you don't know about smoking.

Once you buy into that, then you can start complaining about people who are religious, or conservative, or oppose abortion, or insist on owning guns, or question global warming, or don't necessarily consider gay marriage a newly discovered constitutional right.

Maybe you could just leave other people alone and make up their own minds for a change without worrying about what liberals approve of.

I won't be surprised at all... (Below threshold)

I won't be surprised at all if smoking rates go up during the Obama years, particularly among black males. But don't look for it to be reported in the main stream media.

He's a grown-up. He'll be ... (Below threshold)

He's a grown-up. He'll be the President. He can smoke if he wants to, and I won't criticize. That said, I quit smoking 2 years ago, and I've noticed a change not only in my physical health, but in my emotional stability and my judgment. I have no doubt that smoking cigarettes caused a lot of the miserable feelings that I smoked to alleviate. I'm not sure that smoking affects everyone the same way, and I certainly wouldn't presume to tell anyone else what to do with their lungs, but I am a little concerned about the lowered oxygen supply to the brain of the most powerful man in the world.






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