How would we cope without politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” telling us what we should be doing?
It’s a major question. There isn’t a night that goes by without someone saying, “the government need to do something” on the news or on a programme of some description. Of course by the evening we have been bombarded constantly by newspapers, the radio, TV and all other communications means that for every apparent need there needs to be action which requires legislation to ensure that “we” tow the line and behave as the politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” deem that we should.
No surprises there then.
Of course there are many, many occasions; well let’s just be frank here, it’s almost all occasions isn’t it that we are being told what to do. Mostly there is no clear evidence or real need for anyone to intervene. If it’s a non-problem then we don’t need a non-solution.
The politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” don’t see it this way and today on the early morning news we hear that Call me Dave has decided to go with a minimum price of 40p for a unit of alcohol. The reason given is that this will reduce “binge drinking” and address the growing alcohol based problem whilst also saving 3000 lives a year.
So once again, all the people who do not over-indulge in their use of alcohol will be forced to pay more for their chosen tipple.
Firstly, there are already laws, which can be used to ensure alcohol abuse is reduced significantly. If anyone is behaving in a manner which is violent or inappropriate the Police can and do take them to the cells. They do not do this to the degree that they should and they do not enforce the law as they should. (Yes I know they are statutes and not laws but that’s another post altogether).
Secondly, there is little agreement of what a “safe” amount of alcohol intake actually is. It changes from day to day.
Thirdly, it is not for the government to tell shops how much they should charge for any product or service. The government is there to ensure consumers are not abused they are not there to dictate pricing policies which will directly increase retailers profits.
Fourthly, have they heard of prohibition, which took place in the USA? Lesson learned is a much over used and abused mantra but I’d suggest the politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” learn from that experience and quickly.
Fifthly, how will they police people bringing alcohol into the UK from the EU? EU rules allow free movement of such goods as long as duty has been paid at the point of sale
Sixthly, is this minimum pricing legal within EU law?
You may be surprised to hear that I do not drink. This is through personal choice rather than personal experience. I do not expect other people to not drink alcohol. Each to his own. Live and let live. We can all live without the excesses, which take place every weekend, and we take steps to avoid it. It would be good if it stopped.
I doubt that minimum pricing will work anyway. People will make their own from kits until Call me Dave puts more duty on those and then they’ll improvise. Organised crime will also start to import and /or manufacture and sell out the back door of white vans. People will manage. The politicians, health professionals and “the righteous” will of course deem it as a huge success regardless of any information they receive from anyone to the contrary. The evidence will be clear but perhaps not as clear as it should be. Graphs will be produced which will show falls in problems, which may not be as accurate as they should be.
Three thousand more people will be walking around alive 9on the planet each year because of this legislation. According to the hype and the following “evidence” once it’s been established or investigated.
My mantra is increasingly – why are we putting up with this?