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Posts Tagged ‘alcohol’

Minimum alcohol pricing is prohibition for the poor and mentally negligible

A strange burst of statistics in the Telegraph, which publishes words from a parliamentary debate on a minimum unit price on alcohol. We learn that “just 4 per cent of the population consume almost one-third of all the alcohol sold in England”.

Is that unfair – should booze be more evenly distributed; and should there be more alcohol so that we can all drink more?

Rosanna O’Connor, director of Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco at Public Health England (PHE) aims to explain: “Around 4.4 per cent of the population are drinking just under a third of the alcohol consumed in this country. That’s around 2 million drinking just over 30 per cent of the alcohol.”

The greedy sods. More booze for everyone! No, no. This is about health. It’s also about preventing the poor from drinking as much as the wealthy by making booze more expensive. It’s prohibition for the mentally negligible.

The Scottish government thinks that by setting a minimum price for alcohol it will cut the amount consumed. The surcharge goes to the retailer. It’s not a tax. The cash will compensate the vendor for loss of sales. Here’s an example:

A lower limit of 50p per unit of alcohol would put the minimum price of a four-pack of 4% ABV lager at £3.52, while a bottle of 12.5% ABV red wine could not be sold for less than £4.69.

The middle-class drinker won’t notice the hike as much as the less well off drinker, who buys the cheap, high-strength alcohol. The poor and thirty drinkers will either have to drink less or raise more funds for their booze by, say, getting a job as a hedge fund manager, a football agent, engaging in some other nefarious activity or running a booze train to England.

Posted: 23rd, January 2018 | In: News, Politicians, The Consumer | Comment

Cinema ticket alternative makes everyone look like George Clooney

Alcohol remains relatively good value. Cinema tickets less so. Laura Donnelly is shocked, telling Telegraph readers: “Alcohol now so cheap 13 pints can be bought for price of cinema ticket.”

Or to flip that: Cinema is so expensive you can buy 13 pints and watch telly for the price of one ticket.

She writes:

Teenagers are able to buy more than 13 pints of cider for the price of a cinema ticket, according to a new report which says children are being put at risk by “pocket money prices.”

Teenagers buying cider? Do they get it cheaper than the rest of us. She means people over 18, right?

The study from the Alcohol Health Alliance says supermarkets are selling alcohol at prices that are attracting children and harmful drinkers, because of the absence of minimum prices.

And now the facts:

Consumers could buy two and a half bottles of the cheapest white cider – Frosty Jacks – containing more than 13 pints for the standard £8.24 paid for an off-peak cinema tickets, the study found.

You can get big bottles of cider for the price of a discount cinema tickets. Why not forgo a peak-time trip to the cinema and buy a bottle of champagne?

PS: drink enough and everyone looks like a movie star – in glorious technicolour (yawn).



cinema ticktes

Posted: 6th, October 2016 | In: Broadsheets, Key Posts, Money, Reviews, The Consumer | Comment

Writers and alcohol: Christopher Hitchens’ Seder Night sodality

hitchens booze


Christopher Hitchens talks about booze in his book Hitch-22:

I work at home, where there is indeed a bar-room, and can suit myself. But I don’t. At about half past midday, a decent slug of Mr. Walker’s amber restorative, cut with Perrier water (an ideal delivery system) and no ice. At luncheon, perhaps half a bottle of red wine: not always more but never less. Then back to the desk, and ready to repeat the treatment at the evening meal. No “after dinner drinks”—​most especially nothing sweet and never, ever any brandy. “Nightcaps” depend on how well the day went, but always the mixture as before. No mixing: no messing around with a gin here and a vodka there.

Alcohol makes other people less tedious, and food less bland, and can help provide what the Greeks called entheos, or the slight buzz of inspiration when reading or writing. The only worthwhile miracle in the New Testament—​the transmutation of water into wine during the wedding at Cana—​is a tribute to the persistence of Hellenism in an otherwise austere Judaea. The same applies to the Seder at Passover, which is obviously modeled on the Platonic symposium: questions are asked (especially of the young) while wine is circulated. No better form of sodality has ever been devised: at Oxford one was positively expected to take wine during tutorials. The tongue must be untied.

Spotter: Ilia Blinderman

Posted: 1st, January 2015 | In: Books | Comment (1)

This is your brain on alcohol and marijuana – 2 compare and contrast videos

AsapSCIENCE have produced a video on what happens to your brain on alcohol. This delicious “feelings of release and freedom” allow you to “think very little, but with great clarity.”



And now for the banned substance: marijuana:

Posted: 13th, December 2014 | In: Reviews, The Consumer | Comment (1)

Prime Minister Ignorant of the Law On Booze Shocker

THIS will come as a surprise to some and as a simple confirmation of reality to others. For it appears that our Prime Minister is simply ignorant of the constraints which the law puts around him.

The SWA, whose 56 members employ 35,000 people in Britain, argues that minimum unit pricing would be illegal under EU trade rules as it would amount to a domestic barrier to free trade.

In the letter, the trade organisation stresses that efforts in the past by other countries such as the Netherlands to introduce minimum pricing have been rebuffed by the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.

This is all about that idea of having minimum pricing for alcohol. We who actually understand that much of our law is now made in Brussels, not London, have been pointing this out for years. All those people arguing for that minimum pricing are simply being ignorant as well as stupid.

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Posted: 15th, September 2014 | In: Money, Politicians | Comment

How to brew beer in your stomach

A Sheffield Wednesday fan is seen without a shirt on in the stands

CAN you brew your own beer…in your stomach? The Texas man who entered a Texas emergency room swaying and complaining of dizziness had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.37 percent. One thing: he had consumer no alcohol:

[T]he simplest explanation was that he was drinking when nobody was looking. So doctors put him in an isolated room for 24 hours, watching his blood alcohol level. Sure enough, without a drink, the alcohol level in his blood rose 0.12 percent. Turns out the man’s own stomach, colonized by brewer’s yeast, was brewing beer—a condition doctors call “auto-brewery syndrome.” The doctors described the case in the International Journal of Clinical Medicine:

Gut Fermentation Syndrome also known as Auto-Brewery Syndrome is a relatively unknown phenomenon in modern medicine. Very few articles have been written on the syndrome and most of them are anecdotal. This article presents a case study of a 61 years old male with a well documented case of Gut Fermentation Syndrome verified with glucose and carbohydrate challenges. Stool cultures demonstrated the causative organism as Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The patient was treated with antifungals and a low carbohydrate diet and the syndrome resolved. Helicobacter pylori was also found and could have been a possible confounding variable although the symptoms resolved post-treatment of the S. cerevisiae.

That beer gut is from fermentation. You are barrel stomached…

Posted: 22nd, September 2013 | In: Strange But True | Comment

1 in 10 couples haven’t had sober sex for 6 months


BRITISH people, as we know, are furiously repressed and get weird at the mention of genitalia and certainly come over all funny at the thought of having to be naked around others.

With that, a new survey discovered that one tenth of couples in the UK haven’t had sober sex in over six months.

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Posted: 14th, August 2013 | In: Reviews | Comment

Boozy teens: the cheery vodka skittles drink

BOOZY teens presents the cherry vodka Skittles drink. It sounds disgusting. But to anyone looking to start out on boozing, it’s a must. The older generation mutter dark things. In their day it was different. In their day you had to learn to drink with a proper bloody drink. None of this namby-pampy mulied pick ‘n’ mix. You did your apprenticeship on warm, left over Blue Nun and sucking the lemon slice at the bottom of a glass of Gin and Orange:

Posted: 26th, January 2013 | In: The Consumer | Comment

It’s official: minimum alcohol pricing is illegal

I’VE never really understood what the wowsers have been trying to do with this minimum alcohol pricing lark. If you want booze to be more expensive then put the taxes up. At least that way you’ll get some tax revenue. Why you’d want minimum pricing instead I cannot understand: all that does is increase the manufacturers’ profits.

I’m also not really sure why the price has to go up. Boozing has been falling gently for a decade or so, binge drinking is declining. There doesn’t seem to be any emergency that needs a solution.

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Posted: 7th, January 2013 | In: Money | Comment

Your brain on alcohol

YOUR brain on alcohol. Your brain on drugs.

Spotters: AsapSCIENCE

Posted: 21st, November 2012 | In: Technology | Comments (2)

Blackbirds found blind drunk in playground

SOME young tearaway blackbirds found dead at a primary school in Cumbria, which doesn’t sound very funny. However, when you consider the fact that they were dead from alcohol poisoning, it suddenly feels more amusing.

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Posted: 7th, November 2012 | In: Strange But True | Comment

Why are they being so stupid about minimum pricing for booze?

I’VE been saying, as have many others, for years now that this idea of minimum pricing for booze just won’t work. For it’s illegal under EU law:

David Cameron’s plans to introduce minimum prices for alcohol to tackle Britain’s binge drinking culture have been left in tatters by a legal threat from Brussels.

The European Commission has challenged Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond’s law which imposes a price hike on booze – a plan which Mr Cameron hoped to follow in England and Wales.

Officials in Brussels told Scottish ministers they had to withdraw legislation to impose a 50p-per-unit price on alcohol because it was ‘not compatible’ with the EU Treaty.

This just isn’t a surprise at all, anyone at all who has looked at the idea has come up with exactly the same answer. You’re not allowed to do this. There’s even case law on it, concerning Greece and tobacco pricing.

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Posted: 28th, September 2012 | In: Money, The Consumer | Comment

Lies and more lies on setting a minimum price for alcohol

DAMN, I do get pissed off with people trying to lie to us so that they can change the law. We’re supposed to be the people who decide how we’re ruled so they really do have to tell us the truth so we can decide.

The latest piece of bollocks is this:

Introducing a minimum price for alcohol of 50p per unit will prevent 50,000 pensioners dying of related health problems over the next decade, according to research commissioned by BBC Panorama.

So, 50,000 over a decade is 5,000 oldies a year not popping their clogs because someone’s raised the booze price and they can’t afford to get pissed any more.

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Posted: 8th, September 2012 | In: Money | Comment (1)

How much alcohol should you drink a day? The Daily Mail knows

THE Daily Mail is here to help with your alcohol content:

On 7 September 2011, thee news was that two drinks a day was great. Then on May 31, 2012, the Mail told readers that three glasses a week was the limit.

Posted: 6th, June 2012 | In: Reviews | Comment

Imogen Thomas Interview: Ryan Giggs Cost Her £100,000 And Her Hair

RYAN Giggs. Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs Ryan Giggs. Nice to be able to actually say his name out loud isn’t it? Thanks for falling on the sword John Hemming MP.

Anyway, all this Ryan Giggs business has been a unravelling farce which no-one can fully agree on.

Either way, there was a situation when many were saying his name over and over, while the press was gagged. The press didn’t like it and were always going to retaliate, which they’ll do in spades to the footballer who has caused his own Streisand Effect.

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Posted: 24th, May 2011 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts | Comment (1)

Whitney Houston Totters Off To Rehab While Prince Scowls At Her

GLASSY-EYED pop diva, Whitney Houston, is not  having a good time of it at the moment. Or rather, perhaps she’s having too much of a good time and it has started to rot her brains and liver.

You see, the Bodyguard singer has had to return to rehab because she (allegedly) likes taking too many drugs and wolfing down too much booze.

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Posted: 10th, May 2011 | In: Music | Comment

Charlie Sheen’s Estranged Wife Nips Off To Rehab Looking Glassy Eyed

MEME on legs, Charlie Sheen, is a man seemingly destined to create a whirlpool of near-death around him. In some respects, it is very impressive – the other angle is that its all incredibly distressing watching a group of people unravel while a man shouts “WINNING TIGER BLOOD OF BAYONETS!” or whatever the latest idiotic buzzword is.

Then again, who are we to care? He’s an obscenely wealthy man who can toot his way through suitcases of cocaine and die, right there, before our very eyes, becoming yet another bizarre celebrity footnote that we’ll invariably half-remember in a decade or so, when we’re talking about stupid people and their stupid dying.

And the latest person to look all dead-in-the-eyes is Sheen’s estranged wife, Brooke Mueller.

Over the weekend, Brooke refused to take a drug test. Shame really, because she’s legally obliged to do so as part of a custody agreement with Sheen. And so, she gone to rehab again, because its the American equivalent of the confession booth, where you can absolve your sins with some meek-eyed mendery!

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Posted: 18th, April 2011 | In: Celebrities | Comment