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Cheers - AE

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Government health warning: booze gets you pissed.

If the pricks have their way every label on every wine bottle might look like this with "Your Street, Sometime Soon" printed on it in extra bold. For having achieved most of their aims as far as tobacco goes the joyless health fascists are switching their attention to booze. This isn't new and has been picked up by plenty of bloggers before me - Dick Puddlecote, Leg-iron, DK among others - but with the serious threat of health warnings it's reached a new phase. We're now firmly on the same road to denormalisation process that tobacco is well along. I mean, just read the article for fuck's sake.
The mandatory cigarette-style warnings, which would include details of how many units a bottle contained, would appear on all alcoholic drinks for sale in shops and supermarkets to deter people from binge drinking.
Do you see the softening up process?
  • Warnings are not yet mandatory but are spoken of and written about as if they are.
  • The mention of tobacco - we all know what is meant by health warnings but a little associative guilt helps things along.
  • The binge drinking red herring and appeal to emotion. Yes, really everyone is drinking more even if that's not what sales figures actually show, so your street WILL end up looking like that picture by Wilfred Hogwarts if we don't do something.

The plans are due to be published by the Government today after drinks companies failed to comply with a voluntary code to introduce the labels themselves.
Oh for fuck's sake, here we go again.
voluntary |ˈvälənˌterē|
done, given, or acting of one's own free will : we are funded by voluntary contributions.
With that in mind will someone from the Booze Busybodies please explain what fucking part of the word 'voluntary' demands compliance, while in return I'll open the dictionary at the appropriate page and lightly beat you about the face with it.
As disclosed in The Daily Telegraph last week, five out of six companies have failed to abide by the voluntary system. They face being forced to do so by law. The labelling scheme could be enforced by trading standards officers.
This is what government has become, is it? Do as we suggest or you will have to do as we tell you. Super, when will it apply to voting?
Campaigners have blamed relaxed licensing laws and retailers selling massively discounted alcohol for the boom in binge drinking, particularly among young people.
What fucking boom? I hate to sound like a wearer of bacofoil headgear but this sounds very much like a media beat up designed to sell papers combined with an organised campaign designed to impose the will of a few on the majority, plus of course the cold hand of government seeking tax revenue and obedience to the state, and all relying on bullshit like this:
Figures have also suggested that about 10 million people in England are risking their health by drinking more than the recommended maximum amount — which is two to three units a day for women, (about one large glass of wine) and three to four for men (two pints of beer).
Amounts that the deceitful cunts simply pulled out of their arses with no evidence - zilch, zip, zero, nada, nowt, cubed root of half of fuck all - to support them. When you've made them up because you had...
“...a feeling that you had to say something”
...and you admit that...
“it’s impossible to say what’s safe and what isn’t [because] we don’t really have any data whatsoever”
...and even go so far as to say...
“Those limits were really plucked out of the air. They were not based on any firm evidence at all."
...what fucking difference does it make how many millions are above, below or exactly on the limit? Move the limit as arbitrarily as you came up with it in the first fucking place and a different number will be exceeding it without any actual change in alcohol consumption at all. Besides, hard limits are fundamentally at the wrong level for the many no matter where you set them. Say we were talking about the quantity of Cornish Pasties you could safely eat before you began talking like Rory McGrath and complaining if someone put a carrot in it. The official BMA advice might be three to four pasties but for me it might be only one and a half pasties before I'm on the phone to West Country estate agents and enquiring about property near Porthemmet Beach, while for you it could be half a dozen before you started slagging off Rick Stein. To set it at six is obviously wrong for me and it'd still be too low for you even if we say I'm a pasty lightweight and call it two. Splitting the difference just means it's useless for both of us. This is always the case with hard limits - even if your research is flawed or simply non-existent you're bound to get it right for a small number of people just by luck in the same way that a Roulette ball has to land in one of the numbered slots on the wheel. For everyone else without exception it will be either too high or too low. The only things that can have a meaningful limit is when the safety level is so low as to be effectively zero and would mainly be things that are very hard to get hold of or where the danger is self evident or both.

This won't occur to the healthists of course. Oh no, people must be told how to live their lives.
Today’s consultation document will say brewers and distillers must publish health information on all bottles and cans of wine, beer and spirits.
The document will outline three options: that drinks firms voluntarily comply and print the warnings; that they be forced to do so by the Portman Group, the industry’s regulator; or that they will be forced to do so by law.
These are options? Like fuck are they. The industry may choose option 1 voluntarily, or the regulator will impose the terms of option 1 on them, or it will get the government to impose the terms of option 1 even more forcefully. This is fucking Mafia stuff: one way or another the choice is as false as offering any colour providing it's black. The whole consultation document exercise is just meaningless propaganda, a pretence at having a discussion over a policy that has already been decided upon.

'We can do 'dis one of three ways' said a Portman Group spokesman.

Sadly, and they should be fucking ashamed of themselves, the drinks industry is dealing with this by caving in.
... publication of the document has resulted in a last-minute flurry of brewers and distillers committing voluntarily to publish warnings.
You softcocks, the government needs your industry and the tax revenue it brings in. Stand up to them. Tell them you can't be bothered to carry on your business in a country that's so hostile towards a perfectly legal product because it can't be bothered to deal effectively with the small minority who abuse it. It's not as if the low tax environment makes up for the aggro because there isn't one, so you may as well call their bluff.
Last night, Andy Burnham, the Health Secretary, said: “We have now received assurances to comply from most of the major manufacturers and retailers. I invite the industry as a whole to deliver on these assurances.”
I wish they'd invite you to fuck yourself savagely with a bottle of pepper vodka and snap the neck off in your puritanical ringpiece, you revolting authoritarian shiterag.
Anti-binge drinking campaigners welcomed the announcement, but Prof Ian Gilmore, the president of the Royal College of Physicians, said: “The code should be mandatory. If the industry is dragging its heels, we cannot wait another three years for them to comply.”
Bearing in mind the not really a big problem that binge drinking is being an anti-binge drinking campaigner is like being a staunch opponent of ninja cyborg unicorns. As I said just now the real issue is that those small number of people who do abuse alcohol and cause trouble are not being dealt with effectively. Sweep up this relative handful, and I concede that they'll be vile, rude, possibly violent and probably sick so I don't envy the police the job*, and everyone else who can get merrily pissed without fucking up someone else's evening can just carry on drinking and having a good time.

As for the bansturbator Gilmore, a weapons grade nannying bastard of such purity that even the fucking Portman Group aren't on message as far as he and his Alcohol Health Alliance buddies are concerned, I suspect he won't be happy until he has personal responsibility for every liver in the United Kingdom and legal powers to have properties searched for the stills that are bound to appear as the industry he hates is broken a piece at a time. This man strikes me as a cunts' cunt and someone who gets a semi from thoughts of the Prohibition Era. If that vodka bottle didn't get broken I've got just the idea for where to put it next.

UPDATE: Dick Puddlecote is of course blogging this too, and brings up the interesting and very relevant point that for a public consultation the consultation document itself hasn't been made terribly easy to find. Big surprise.

* But one which they are fucking paid to do.
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