San Francisco Insists Your Juul Store Should Be In Daly City For Maximum Profit

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1949

San Francisco is indulging in another bout of virtue signalling. There’s really very little point at all in an area so small trying to ban the sale of something. America is, after all, the land of the car. Actually San Francisco’s so small you can walk out of it in under an hour. So, a ban on the local sale of e-cigarettes like Juul is not in fact going to do anything very much. Except, of course, virtue signal and also make that store you and I are going to open in Daly City massively profitable.

For, you know, that’s what people do when faced with such bans on things they want to buy. Walk or otherwise travel a mile or two and go buy them anyway. As people have been doing in both Philadelphia and Berkeley to get around the local soda taxes:

Two San Francisco officials introduced legislation Tuesday that would ban the sale of e-cigarettes in the city until the U.S. Food and Drug Administration evaluates the effect of electronic cigarettes on public health. Supporters say if the measure is approved, it would be the first such prohibition in the country. Its chances aren’t clear.  

This is indeed virtue signalling and no more. Looking at this map can’t see that anywhere in SF is more than an hour’s walk from the southern border of the city. Where, of course, the ban doesn’t exist. OK, OK, if you insist, 90 minutes.

The proposed law would be the first of its kind in the US, and aims to crack down on what activists call an “epidemic” of youth e-cigarette use. City Attorney Dennis Herrera said that “Millions of children are already addicted to e-cigarettes, and millions more will follow if we don’t act.”

Rational people know that millions of teens start smoking real cigarettes each year. What we want to know is, in the presence of e-such, do more or fewer? The clear and obvious answer being fewer, they’re a substitute, not a complement. Thus if we want to lower deaths from nicotine byproducts we’d really be subsidising e-cigarettes. But logic, eh?

San Francisco city attorney Dennis Herrera, one of the co-authors of the bill, which is yet to be approved, said reviews should have been done before they were sold. “These companies may hide behind the veneer of harm reduction, but let’s be clear, their product is addiction,” said Mr Herrera.

Well, if harm is reduced, then they are indeed selling harm reduction, aren’t they?

As at the top though, given the size of San Francisco this is just a piece of virtue signalling of no great import. Those who want the stuff will be able to get it at Daly City. You know, that fine emporium we’re about to open, you and I?

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Rhoda Klapp
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Rhoda Klapp

Walk? Have you been to America?

timworstall
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timworstall

Lived there twice. Couple of years each time. Once east, once west, coast. SF? Walk? Sure.

Rhoda Klapp
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Rhoda Klapp

I certainly wouldn’t drive in SF itself but I didn’t see a lot of Americans walking. In Texas people would stop and ask if you were all right, assuming your car had broken down. Americans won’t walk across a car park. They will drive to the gym to go on a treadmill. Maybe the BART to Daly city?

Quentin Vole
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Quentin Vole

In ‘old’ US cities – NY, Boston, SF – people will walk (in the centre at least). In ‘new’ cities – LA, Atlanta, DFW, Phoenix – it’s almost impossible.

TD
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TD

When I lived in SF I walked a lot. It’s a pretty walkable place if you’re willing to tackle the hills. I also had a stick shift back then and still drove, becoming quite good at the handbrake/clutch thing. However, there’s plenty of parking in Daly City, so likely most people would drive, but as you mention, a shop by the Daly City BART station would be used. Untaxed cigarettes are often sold on Indian reservations, especially if they are near towns or cities. What Tim doesn’t mention about virtue signaling, is that pressure will be applied soon enough to… Read more »