Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Booze Matters - It's Christmas!!
As we gear up for a booze sodden Christmas, it is gemusing to read that a bunch of "health experts" have been pushing the tired old mantra of a minimum price for alcohol.
They recently promulgated their request via a letter in The Daily Telegraph.
"SIR – Today, MPs debate the crucial issue of alcohol taxation. Each year, alcohol causes the admission of over a million people to hospital, is linked to 13,000 new cases of cancer and is associated with one in four deaths among young people aged 15 to 24.
There is a wealth of evidence to show a direct correlation between alcohol affordability and levels of harm. The House of Commons Health Select Committee state: “increasing the price of alcohol is… the most powerful tool at the disposal of a government.” In 2010, alcohol was 44 per cent more affordable than it was in 1980, a trend mirrored by an increase in cases of alcohol-related health problems and social damage.
We urgently need to raise the price of cheap drink. Harmful drinkers and young people are likely to be the most responsive to price increases. In particular, we need to narrow the price gap between alcohol in bars and restaurants with alcohol in supermarkets and off-licences, to make bulk discounts and pocket-money prices a thing of the past.
There is a push towards a minimum price for each unit of alcohol in the devolved nations of the United Kingdom, with the SNP leading the debate in Scotland. This is a simple and effective mechanism for the Scottish Government to control alcohol prices. If the Coalition is not ready for such bold action, MPs must not lose sight of the importance of taxation as a means not only to lower alcohol consumption but also to direct revenue into the public purse.
With alcohol harm costing us an estimated £25 billion each year, MPs must act now."
The letter claims that a minimum price is a “simple and effective mechanism” for tackling alcohol-related deaths and social problems.
That is complete bollocks.
People, if they are determined to get drunk, will employ any method possible to do so (even if it means drinking moonshine, meths or smuggling in cheaper booze from the EU).
Class A drugs are illegal, and expensive, yet people still take drugs!
Have the "experts" not learned that people will do whatever is necessary to circumvent government regulations, if the regulations stand in the way of them getting high/drunk?
Prof Sir Ian Gilmore, a special adviser to the Royal College of Physicians, claims that a 50p minimum price per unit of alcohol could save nearly 10,000 lives a year.
How the hell can he validate that figure?
We are each destined to die at some stage, how we choose to kill ourselves (eg via eating, drinking, smoking, drugs etc) is surely up to us and not a matter for Nanny to regulate?
Those in the medical profession are the most prone in society to partake in excessive, smoking, drinking, drug taking etc.
It is not for them to dictate to the rest of us how we should live!
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