Wednesday, 15 February 2012

A Nation Of Goldfish

If there's ever one issue guaranteed to drive me to drink, it's the subject of binge drinking and minimum pricing, which has cropped up yet again:
Cells known as “drunk tanks” which detain inebriated people until they sober up could be introduced to towns to tackle the nation’s growing alcohol problem, David Cameron signals on Wednesday.
Next month, the Government publishes its alcohol strategy which is expected to recommend higher “minimum” prices for drink, potentially by increasing duties on many alcoholic beverages. 
Drunk tanks? What the hell are they? Challenger 2's that run on ethanol?

It's like there's some software in Number 10 that shows an alarm and says; 'it's been 2 months or so since the last 'binge drinking' press release - time for another, we'll just re-arrange the words a bit'. We had one in December and one in August and so on.

So cue another day of apparent 'news', liberally sprinkled with the same old photographs of young drunk women (well, if you can't beat them join them). Given that the call for minimum pricing has gone on for years the MSM seems incapable of asking the obvious question, to both Labour and Conservative governments; "so why don't you just do it?". No-one else seems to be asking the same question either, preparing to take at face value regular press releases. Nevermind we'll just go through this whole charade again in a couple of months time. We really are a nation of goldfish.

Meanwhile real news is happening...


  1. There is something ironic in Cameron deliberately making a product more expensive to stop poor people buying it.

    On a practical note has anyone determined how elastic the demand is for alcohol on a Saturday night binge? Or is that too scientific (and too Tory) for our banal and brainless Leader?

  2. As Misanthrope Girl points out, the net tax revenue from alcohol is £5.2bn. Our government will not want to jeopardise this income which means that, as previously, nothing will be done. Now, I actually want nothing to be done, so it would be really nice if we could sabotage the binge drinking alarm.

  3. Drunk tanks? Police stationed in A+E?I thought I had flashed back a few years to Tony Blair ordering police to march drunks to the cash-point.

    Laughable ideas,and none of them will happen.But SOMETHING must be done,even a soundbite!

  4. Why don't they just do it?

    Because it's contrary to EU law, that's why.

  5. The drink tank sounds the place to be after a load of booze...guaranteed drunk tarts gaggin for it.

  6. 'There is something ironic in Cameron deliberately making a product more expensive to stop poor people buying it.'

    He's done it with energy (lack of which kills) so why not with alcohol?

  7. As a special constable who has spent time taking drunks to cells, this would be an interesting concept. Considering that before they are detained, the drunk is likely to have been abusive/violent/sick/so drunk they can't stand etc etc. Who is going to look after these people? If somebody is really drunk and taken to cells, that person is placed on a constant...that means a police officer (not a PCSO) is taken off the streets to "constantly" watch that person in case they choke on their own vomit. Cameron (and to be fair most politicians) really do live in a parallel world don't they?

  8. Ian E said: "He's done it with energy ...". You are right, Cameron is a hypocrite.

    I meant that whilst Cameron has gone out of his way to "de-toxify the Tory brand" (managerialism speak for 'we Tories aren't rich toffs really'), this move doesn't prevent binge drinking but does penalise the poor.