Apparently the BBC screened a Panorama programme last night that could be described as a half-hour commercial for the anti-drink lobby. I didn’t see it myself (my blood pressure would probably have been unable to stand the strain) but it is very effectively deconstructed by Chris Snowdon here.
Two of the Prohibitionists’ distortions of the truth particularly stand out:
- While it is true that per capita alcohol consumption in the UK has approximately doubled since 1947, that year, in the wake of a World War and in a time of austerity and rationing, was an untypical historic low point. The current level is only consistent with the long-term historic average.
- How can alcohol be considered absurdly cheap in this country when we have some of the very highest rates of alcohol duty in the entire European Union? Our duties are higher even than those in Sweden, notorious for its strict anti-drink culture. If alcohol is causing problems, then surely it must be due to social factors other than price.