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In another move by a power-mad city council designed to enhance their status while doing little for the residents of the city, the council has announced they are taking on the critical issue of outdoor smoking. The Los Angeles Times has the story, including choice quotes such as:

Councilman Tom LaBonge, chairman of the Arts, Parks, Health and Aging Committee, said it was getting easier to enforce the smoking bans because of cooperation by restaurant owners.

"The patrons are really demanding it," LaBonge said after his committee directed city lawyers to draft the ordinance Wednesday. "One day we'll be an absolutely smoke-free world as we move forward, but people still enjoy it, so we're still allowing it."

Thank you, SmokeMeister LaBonge for "allowing" us to engage in legal behavior. We're so lucky to have such a kind, benevolent overlord watching out for people walking by patios.

Of course, Greig "the i is silent" Smith isn't quite as forgiving:

The measure's sponsor, Councilman Greig Smith, said he wrote the legislation after noticing that California's ban on smoking inside restaurants was driving smokers just outside the establishments' doors, exposing children and other patrons to secondhand smoke as they entered the venue or waited for tables.

"We needed to do something about it," Smith said.

What is he smoking? Has anyone ever been subjected to massive blasts of smoke outside restaurants? Do people really see this as a pressing, legitimate concern? We needed to do something? The very concept is absurd, and the idea that this is important business for the council is a slap in the face to the taxpayers who have serious, critical needs.

Photo by SuperFantastic

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