Tag Archives: alcohol

The drugs which kill the most have been legalised for centuries, so how will legalising cannabis make much difference?

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It was good to hear Vince recently confirm his whole-hearted support for our policy of legalising cannabis. I also fully support the policy, which is actually quite a “baby step” when you consider the plethora of drugs readily available today – with more becoming available (including via the internet to one’s postbox) by the day.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 35 Comments

Eric Avebury writes…Society cannot afford to scrap the alcohol duty escalator

Alcohol and Ulcerative ColitisLast week’s Budget saw the Chancellor renege on the Government’s commitment to tackle the problem of cheap alcohol by scrapping the alcohol duty escalator. This move is a step that society simply cannot afford; not only will these duty cuts result in a shortfall of £290 million to the Exchequer when Osborne admits we are still going to be in deficit until 2018, but with the cost of alcohol harm in the UK exceeding £25 billion each year, our public services – particularly the NHS – can’t cope …

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Opinion: we shouldn’t make the poor pay for the irresponsible: on why Theresa May is wrong (again!)

I am fully aware of the evils of alcohol: believe me, I’ve spent my fair share of nights out on the town (and now have the dubious privilege of living above a dodgy nightclub in an otherwise pleasant area), so I have seen first-hand what binge drinking looks (and sounds, and smells) like. It is not a pretty picture, and in addition to being a blight on neighbourhoods in town centres up and down the country, it is a huge health nightmare.

But how do you solve this problem? To quote from Yes, Minister, the Government’s response rather looks like a …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 20 Comments

The weekend debate: Should we end the bargain booze bonanza?

Here’s your starter for ten in our weekend slot where we throw up an idea or thought for debate…

Just in time to kill everyone’s new year buzz David Cameron has announced government plans to introduce minimum alcohol pricing in England, similar to recent proposals by the Scottish government.

The details are still to be confirmed but the proposed system could stop the sale of alcohol at below 40p to 50p a unit in shops and supermarkets and cost drinkers up to £700 million a year.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 17 Comments

Alcohol minimum pricing should be this government’s first bold evidence-based drug policy

One of the most common arguments I read against the government control and regulation of the currently illegal drug markets is that we have so many problems with alcohol. Were cannabis for instance to be “legalised”, authors presume its use will increase and create new social problems to rival those that alcohol inflicts.The simple counter-argument employed by myself and other drug policy reformers is that alcohol is a very poorly regulated drug. Were any of the other currently illegal drugs to become regulated by the state, the alcohol model is one model it would be extremely unwise to replicate. Alcohol …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 61 Comments

Pricier booze for Greater Manchester – a good idea?

The ten local authorities that make up Greater Manchester are considering imposing a minimum alcohol price of 50 pence a unit across the area – and David Cameron is certainly interested.

The move, planned for October, would see a standard bottle of wine costing at least £4.50, a 700ml bottle of whisky £14 and a six pack of lager at least £6.

Health officials are in favour, believing it will cut alcohol-related illness, improve life expectancy and reduce inequality.

One of the ten authorities, Stockport, is cautious, though. Stockport’s concern is not so much about the principle of minimum pricing …

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Daily View 2×2: 19 October 2009

2 Big Stories


Labour’s Hain threatens BBC with legal action over BNP invitation

Labour’s Welsh secretary Peter Hain makes a bid for the media spotlight today by arguing that the BBC could face legal action over this Thursday’s edition of Question Time, due to feature an appearance by BNP leader Nick Griffin MEP:

… in his letter , Mr Hain … said the decision should be reconsidered in light of a legal case about ethnic restrictions on the BNP’s membership rules. The party has agreed to amend its constitution after the Equalities and Human Rights Commission sought an injunction, claiming the BNP was breaking the Race Relations Act by restricting membership to “indigenous Caucasian” people.

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Oldham’s violent bars on Panorama

Tonight’s Panorama – at 8.30pm on BBC1 – features reports on a huge increase in violent attacks in bars in Oldham – and what the Lib Dem council there is doing about it.

Yorkshire Street is the main drinking area in Oldham which had a 200% increase in serious violent incidents in the first four months of this year.

That’s a stabbing or an assault with intention to kill on average every Friday and Saturday night.

But the Greater Manchester town has come up with a unique way of fighting back the recent spike in alcohol-related disorder.

The council believes promotions such as

Posted in Lib Dem TV | Also tagged , , and | 23 Comments

Bob’s ‘Campaign to Save the Great British Pub’ backed by 200+ MPs

As The Scotsman reports:

MORE than 200 MPs yesterday called on the UK government to back a five-point plan to save “great British pubs”. In his early day motion, Lib Dem MP Bob Russell said five pubs were closing down in the UK every day, with beer sales in pubs at their lowest for nearly 40 years.

Here’s the text of Bob’s EDM in full:

EDM 10 – CAMPAIGN TO SAVE THE GREAT BRITISH PUB
03.12.2008

Russell, Bob

That this House is alarmed that five public houses are closing down every day, with beer sales in pubs at their lowest level for nearly 40 years; is

Posted in Parliament | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

LDV readers say: No to a minimum price for alcohol

On the day that chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson was recommending that the government establish a minimum price for alcohol (which would see the doubling of the price of many beers and spirits) LDV posed the question: Is it time to support a minimum price for alcohol?

Here’s what you said:

>> 31% (102 votes) – Yes, minimum prices will help tackle the UK’s binge drinking problems
>> 6% (19) – Maybe, there’s merit in the proposal but the middle of a recession is the wrong time
196% of all votes
>> 59% (192) – No, government should not penalise the

Posted in Voice polls | Also tagged | 16 Comments

NEW POLL: do you support a minimum price for alcohol?

Government ministers have spent the last 24 hours distancing themselves from the proposal of chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson to establish a minimum price for alcohol which would see the doubling of the price of many beers and spirits.

Today’s Guardian reports:

Plans to charge a minimum of 50p per unit of alcohol are to be put forward by Sir Liam Donaldson today. The Scottish government is planning to introduce minimum prices for alcohol and these could come into force by the end of the year. It would make Scotland the first country in Europe to introduce minimum pricing,

Posted in News and Voice polls | Also tagged , and | 27 Comments
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