Firstly, we don’t want to actually reduce the amount of alcohol consumed in the country. We could do that very simply by taxing it to Scandinavian levels and just making it too expensive for people to drink large amounts of. But neither the publicans nor the public fancy that, so we say that such an option is “unworkable.”
We then say we want to get people to drink more responsibly. How? Rather than drink one’s quota at night, perhaps we could spread it throughout the day? That might be worth a government ad campaign. Instead of that useless po-faced drinkaware.ie ad campaign, we could encourage people to have a sup with their mid-morning biscuit:
“ Have a bourbon with your chocolate Bourbon!”
We won’t do that either. No, let’s target young people, who don’t really vote, and also treat them like morons. This is the generation that invented their own language and are incredibly proficient with technology, yet we think that they don’t know that alcohol is dangerous? Let’s also give the Guards more powers to not use. After all, we gave them Asbos, and just look how many they’ve used so far.
Having said all that, I don’t blame the government, who have the unenviable task of crafting a response to a problem we all acknowledge, but deep down don’t really want solved.