nos-trum. pronunciation: \nos'-trum\. noun. Etymology: Latin, neuter of noster our, ours.
1. a medicine of secret composition recommended by its preparer but usually without scientific proof of its effectiveness.
2. a usually questionable remedy or scheme.
See here for more discussion.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Control Booze And Only The Drunks Will Have Booze

The government in Britain is discussing raising alcohol prices to reduce the incidence of alcohol-related disease.

I don't think they understand the nature of addiction.

The study they did (BBC News Health, Jan 18) to show it would help to raise the price of alcohol did show a reduction in consumption: the higher the price, the more consumption fell.  You can read the study here.

But, stupidly, they didn't look at "who" would reduce their drinking with price increases.  [This is why we should never blindly accept numbers from "the experts."].  And the researchers recognize that any pricing program to reduce harmful consumption must "target" those most at risk, but they offer no concrete way to do that.

Given even a superficial understanding of human nature, my guess is that those persons who have problems with bingeing, abuse, or addiction would continue on as before, diverting more of their income to their problem.

And the people with disposable income who drank socially would decide (given the increased cost) that they could get more for their money elsewhere.

But it would give more revenue to the government...which most governments consider a benefit in itself.

Doc D

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