Wednesday, 28 November 2012

A quiet drink or two

A [Home Office] spokesman added: "Those who enjoy a quiet drink or two have nothing to fear from our proposals."

BBC news (see here)

A Nazi spokesman added: "Gentiles have nothing to fear from our proposed 'final solution'"


What about three drinks? Or what if, while slightly inebriated, you raise your voice in defense of your opinion that the Home Office has exceeded its democratic mandate? God help you if you get shit-faced and take a piss against the walls of the Palace of Westminster.

According to Nick Triggle, Health Correspondent for the BBC, "ministers are proposing a minimum price of 45p a unit [say £4.20 for a bottle of plonk] for the sale of alcohol in England and Wales as part of a drive to tackle problem drinking...The Home Office said the consultation was targeted at 'harmful drinkers and irresponsible shops'...Research carried out by Sheffield University for the government shows a 45p minimum would reduce the consumption of alcohol by 4.3%, leading to 2,000 fewer deaths and 66,000 hospital admissions after 10 years...The number of crimes would drop by 24,000 a year as well, researchers suggested."

There are precious few reasons to remain in Blighty; the only reason I'm still here is inertia. The BBC is no longer a candidate reason. Having fingered the wrong man, in its pursuit of witches (aka paedophiles), it has become incapable of speaking its mind.

It is regularly claimed that I live in a free country, where I am encouraged to do anything I please that isn't specifically prohibited under law. Even were this absurd claim true, which it is not, there are so few enjoyable activities that are still legally sanctioned that I might as well report to Stalin.

If I take my seventy-something-year-old Mum to the pub for lunch, she has to skulk off to the car park whenever she wants a fag. If I am curious about the experience of being high on any drug other than alcohol or nicotine, I had better be careful that the pigs aren't watching. I suppose that I should gratefully acknowledge my freedom to teach infants that they are damned unless they 'agree' to be baptised before they die, but strangely enough that's a right I've never been keen to invoke.

We must take a stand. We must state clearly that we do not care how our government thinks we should behave. We must smoke in pubs (sigh, I shall have to take up smoking, which I hate); drink to excess; abuse illegal drugs; have sex with 15-year old girls and boys, with their consent; treat members of barbaric, palaeolithic cults with contempt; hunt foxes if it pleases us to do so; and force our loathsome politicians back into the shadows where they will once again feel at home.


Ron Tomlinson said...

Hi Tom. I'm with you on this one. Governments should stop trying to make people good. This is what freedom *means*, almost.

Btw, I wrote an oversized comment about addiction over here:

-- Tom

torquatus said...

Hi Tom,

Of course you are. I don't know and respect anyone under the age of, say, 80 who obeys the law, except insofar as it furthers his or her aims. Do you?

Freedom seems to me to be under attack from many quarters and the way I personally respond is to refuse to comply with rules that don't suit me.

Of course, one day I might get caught doing something allegedly naughty, but I am willing to take that risk and accept the consequences, for the sake of making the point.

I enjoyed your comment on addiction and wish that the other participants in that forum were capable of listening.