British Prime Minister Favors Reduced Alcohol Consumption

by: Mike Miller

You can take a lot of things away from British citizens and they are too polite to complain. Try taking away their cheap booze and you might be looking at a real fight!

Many British citizens already have their dander up over Britain's membership of the European Union and high gasoline taxes.

Now the Prime Minister could face a rebellion over his plans to stop the sale of alcohol at below 40 to 50 pence a unit in English shops and supermarkets.

Two thirds of Conservatives voted against the smoking ban in 2006, claiming it encroached on personal freedoms. Conservative critics today claimed the Prime Minister’s plans to raise the price of alcohol were another example of a "Big Brother" policy that would penalize moderate, middle-class drinkers.

In a boldly ridiculous statement, Philip Davies, a Conservative backbencher, said the proposal was "the most ludicrous thing the Government has ever suggested".

Davies added, "When families are struggling to survive at the moment with their bills the last thing they need is the Government interfering with the cost of alcohol." Sounds like hogwash to me.

A recent official study found that setting a minimum price of 30p per unit would prevent 300 deaths a year, 40p about 1,000 deaths, and 50p more than 2,000 premature deaths.

The minimum price would be accompanied by an “aggressive” public health campaign and a more draconian approach to curtailing the sale of alcohol in shops, pubs and clubs.

In a letter to The Daily Telegraph, doctors from the British Medical Association and Royal College of Physicians claimed that minimum pricing for alcohol would be the most “simple and effective mechanism” for tackling the problem.

Interesting idea. Personally I am in favor of more alcohol awareness classes. People will choose to drink regardless of the price. If buying it becomes too expensive, inexpensive booze is always easy to make and is far more dangerous than the regulated alcohol sold in stores.