Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The party's over

I like a drink, occasionally; although I’m not dependent on the stuff. I managed to eschew alcohol throughout the six months of my incarceration. I sometimes drink a glass of Rioja with a meal at the weekend or maybe a flute or two of Champagne, when it’s on offer but I'm not, and nor will I ever be, the type of person to settle down behind the bins at the back of my local Asda with a bottle of White Lightning cider or a can of Carlsberg extra strength lager for company. They’re simply not my tipple.

However, just because I don’t choose to guzzle own-label alcopops from Lidl, doesn’t mean I should try to ban or price it out of someone else’s reach just because I happen to think it’s not good for them or that I know better how to protect their health by placing booze on the top financial shelf.

So, the news that our illiberal and nannying government, consisting of well-heeled Eton and Bullingdon types, has decided to introduce a minimum price for alcohol fills me with dread. I honestly thought that when Commissar Brown was exiled to a gulag in Fife, we’d pass into an altogether sunnier and more enlightened place where government would finally start behaving like the servant of the people rather than it’s cross and humourless governess. Alas, it was not to be.

But surely, these new price controls will only affect that nasty cheap booze that could so easily double as Toilet Duck or Domestos? Well, that may indeed be true, but don’t think for a moment that the illiberal meddlers behind this move will stop there. Once they've tasted the right to interfere with our personal liberty, these puritans will set up base camp and start lobbying for the price to be pushed up to a point where we have as healthy a relationship with alcohol as the Finns and Swedes do.

Do Cameron and his advisors not understand, as they quaff their Dom Perignon in the subsidised bars of the Houses of Parliament, that the Trojan lobby horse they’ve so convivially welcomed in will soon be eyeing up all types of booze, food, tobacco and other substances that might offer the tiniest crumb of comfort during this endless night of austerity?

No, thought not.


  1. You have to understand that the medical lobby has the media in its pocket and there's a lot of meaningless "research" being done in order to bump up NHS expenditure thus protecting the "investment" and the client state. So if some useless dollops find that 20 people who don't clean their ears had slightly less acute hearing than when they were 18 and then enquire into how many of them were stupid enough to poke out their eardrums, you can bet there will be screaming headlines about earwax causing deafness and the dangers of cotton buds (Ban the killer buds) and all the action that some useless parasite thinks might be necessary. And then they'll produce some EUSSR Directive...

    This is of course the legacy of Gordon the Moron.

    Glad you're feeling better. Happy New Year.

  2. "these puritans will set up base camp and start lobbying for the price to be pushed up to a point where we have as healthy a relationship with alcohol as the Finns and Swedes do"

    It's my understanding that one could, should one choose to do so, pay for a fortnight holiday in Sweden purely by taking two suitcases full of scotch over and selling it on the thriving black market. On the surface Sweden has a healthy attitude to booze but in my limited opinion they are no better or worse than the Brits.

  3. One of the things that irritates me about these busybody, interfering, alleged do-gooders is that they have the effrontery to refer to themselves as Alcohol Campaigners. They're not campaigning for Alcohol; they are Temperance believers, Sanctimonious Prohibitionists whose actions in pre-WII USA led to bootlegging and consequent rise of Organized Crime controlled by the Mafia and fellow Gangsters leaving the world with a legacy of Criminal Mobsters.


  4. The Paramedics Diary blog has a comment on this story. The BBC asked Stuart Gray to comment on the story as a Paramedic blogger and author of two books based on his work as a London paramedic.

    As usual he has some pithy common sense comments, based on his street experience, on why the plans won't work because they are based on a complete lack of understanding of the causes of the problems.

    He also commented on Man-Flu.