‘Passive drinking’ is blighting the nation, Sir Liam Donaldson warns – Telegraph

'Passive drinking' is blighting the nation, Sir Liam Donaldson warns – Telegraph.

This touches on the arguments I make in my chapter on the Drug War. The only fair way to deal with harm causing behaviour is to ensure that those who cause the harm pay whatever it costs to mitigate the harm. Tobacco taxes (in the UK at least) are so extreme that they achieve that goal in spades. The cost of health care caused by smoking is paid for about 9 times over by the punitive taxation on tobacco – which is why it is insane to suggest that – having subsidised the health costs for the rest of society – smokers should then have their right to “free” health care withdrawn.

I make the point in that chapter that what is true of tobacco taxes is pointedly not true of alcohol taxation. As this article makes clear, there are the huge costs of “passive drinking” in terms, largely of social violence. So talk of trivia like minimum unit pricing completely misses the point. The alcohol industry (including, obviously, the consumers) should be required to pay the entire costs of their behaviour and that would require much more significant increases than are proposed here…


About Harry Stottle
Refugee from the Stumbleupon Blogicide of October 2011 Here you will find my "kneejerk" responses to the world and what I happen to bump into. For my more detailed considerations and proposals, please visit my website or my previous main blogging site.

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