Saturday, December 18, 2004

Because you need more Himalayan news

Bhutan, a Buddhist kingdom in the middle of the Himalayas, has banned smoking and tobacco sales. This is huge news if you happen to live in Bhutan, but if you do, you probably aren't on the Internet right now anyway, and if you are, you certainly aren't reading this blog.

But what about those poor Bhutanese who are hopelessly addicted to nicotine, you say? Well, it'll do your heart good to know that King Jigme Singye Wangchuk -- no, I didn't make that name up -- has their well-being in mind, too. Addicts can still bring tobacco into the country for personal use, provided that they pay a 100 percent tax and limit the puffing to the comfort (or perhaps discomfort) of their own homes.

I wonder how long it'll be before some American politician reads this story and starts having some really bad, unworkable ideas.

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