The cost and costs of alcohol

September 9th, 2011 at 1:18 pm by David Farrar

In my Stuff blog, I look at the cost and costs of . An extract:

Another key area of controversy is advertising. Some advocate that alcohol advertising and sponsorship should be totally banned. This would mean that Tui billboards would be illegal, and that Brancott Estate would no longer be able to sponsor the World of Wearable Arts show in Wellington. The Government has said it will not ban alcohol advertising and sponsorship, but this decision may change depending on the makeup of Parliament after the election. Do you think an advertising ban would result in young people not drinking, and if so would be worthwhile? Or do you think banning Tui billboards is a step too far?

The full blog is at Stuff, and you can comment there.

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19 Responses to “The cost and costs of alcohol”

  1. Pete George (22,784 comments) says:

    No regulatory changes would be needed if we learnt to drink more sensibly and responsibly.

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  2. redeye (631 comments) says:

    “The Government has said it will not ban alcohol advertising and sponsorship”

    We’re talking about the same government that yesterday stated they would not allow terminally ill people to choose to treat their own pain with a naturally grown herb?

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  3. backster (2,076 comments) says:

    Prior to alcohol sponsorship which wasn’t then required, because we all drank beer, and there were only two breweries, sports and cultural events were sponsored by Rothmans. I wouldn’t mind if they banned TV booze ads provided they also banned the silly ‘drink & drive you are a bloody idiot ‘ type ads at the same time.

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  4. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    Bunch of prissy whiners who would just love to ban anything that gives other people pleasure and seek any excuse to do so.

    Friends the world is never going to be perfect no matter what new rules, regulations and taxes the fun killers and pleasure police manage to get passed – all they will succeed in doing is making it more boring

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  5. Scott Chris (5,875 comments) says:

    According to the Freedom Forum, legal systems, and society at large recognize limits on the freedom of speech, particularly when freedom of speech conflicts with other values or rights.

    The question is, how far should one go. If one were to use the restrictions on the sale of tobacco as a precedent, then yes, advertising of alcohol should be banned as well as health warnings printed on their packaging. Furthermore, any product deemed unhealthy should carry accurate information as to its ingredients, point of origin and possible health risks, as the more informed the consumer is, the more responsibility he can take to make his own decisions with an objective frame of reference.

    Freedom of choice is all very well, provided you know what it is you’re choosing and that you have agreed to accept the consequences of that choice.

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  6. Ed Snack (1,734 comments) says:

    Chris, then why do they use the moniker “Freedom Forum”. Astroturfing by the sound of it. When considering conflicts between freedom and restriction, the doubt should always lie with freedom, conflicts with “other values” is specious rubbish in most cases.

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  7. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Scott,

    “particularly when freedom of speech conflicts with other values or rights.”

    Not really. Restrictions on freedom of speech are generally only acceptable when violence is being incited. Arguing that freedom of speech should be curbed to protect values or rights is generally a left wing argument advanced for the noble purpose of stopping people’s feelings from being hurt.

    Defamation is the other, civil, restriction, but that doesn’t really come into this.

    Do you mean perhaps freedom of choice?

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  8. Scott Chris (5,875 comments) says:

    F E Smith – “Restrictions on freedom of speech are generally only acceptable when violence is being incited”

    In that case, couldn’t tobacco companies claim to be having their human rights violated on the basis of their right of free speech being illegally censured?

    As always, I’m attempting to form an argument based on a combination of first principals and societal practice, which is hit and miss I admit.

    Ed Snack – I did try to find a non-partisan definition of free speech, as in theory, purely free speech would have no restriction. I sought a definition with constraints similar to those employed in this country by my rough estimation.

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  9. Pete George (22,784 comments) says:

    couldn’t tobacco companies claim to be having their human rights violated on the basis of their right of free speech being illegally censured?

    Couldn’t my mother (oesophagus) and father (lungs) claim to have their health rights violated by tobacco companies who freely lied?

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  10. Lee01 (2,171 comments) says:

    “Restrictions on freedom of speech are generally only acceptable when violence is being incited. Arguing that freedom of speech should be curbed to protect values or rights is generally a left wing argument advanced for the noble purpose of stopping people’s feelings from being hurt.”

    Not really. Freedom of speech does not allow people to commit perjury, or to defame/slander another person. There are areas already generally accepted where freeedom of speech is restricted other than inciting to violence. Very few rights are truly absolute in practice. Personally I don’t think freedom of speech should aplly to pornography, which, given the power, I would ban totally.

    And just to be clear, I’m not left wing and strongly oppose things like hate speech laws.

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  11. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Scott,

    Yes. But I see what you are getting at.

    Pete George,

    No. But they might be able to sue if they could show misrepresentation. But the health risks of smoking have been known for a long time- did the cigarette company say that there was no risk to your parent’s health from their product, or similar?

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  12. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Freedom of speech does not allow people to commit perjury

    But the sanction of perjury is based on the person breaking their oath to tell the truth, something that they entered into voluntarily.  So freedom of speech would not cover the right to lie under oath for that reason.

    or to defame/slander another person.

    Which I have already noted.  But truth is a defence to a claim of defamation.  Another point that can be made against your perjury argument.  We are not talking about freedom to lie here, but about restrictions on advancing ideas and opinions. (related to alcohol!)

    There are areas already generally accepted where freeedom of speech is restricted other than inciting to violence.

    Well, you shouldn’t watonly cry ‘fire’ in a crowded theatre, but that really more is a negligence issue.  But Scott was talking about restictions because of values and rights, which just don’t have the legitimacy that the normal restrictions on freedom of speech (as opposed to the freedom of expression) of the protection of public order (i.e. violence) has.

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  13. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Andrei (1,015) Says:
    September 9th, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Bunch of prissy whiners who would just love to ban anything that gives other people pleasure and seek any excuse to do so.

    What a good description of the catholic church.

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  14. ben (2,396 comments) says:

    I think we should ban socialists.

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  15. Andrei (2,499 comments) says:

    No eszett – the Church doesn’t ban anything, it teaches some things are wrong but you a free to do them or not as you choose but you do have to accept that you will take the consequences for your own choices.

    The Government on the other hand uses the heavy hand of the Law and power to impose taxation, set prices etc to enforce its view of morality – big, big, difference

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  16. Bob (478 comments) says:

    Andrei – the Catholic Church does ban things where it has the power. Think of contraceptives in Ireland until recently. If it doesn’t have the power to ban anything itself it tries to influence those that can to do it’s work. When politicians in South America wouldn’t cooperate it used it’s influence to put them out of power.

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  17. Steve Wrathall (238 comments) says:

    Lets ban religion, because some people over-indulge in it and harm themselves and others.

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  18. eszett (2,332 comments) says:

    Andrei (1,016) Says:
    September 9th, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    the Church doesn’t ban anything

    What a great new tui ad.

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  19. boredboy (250 comments) says:

    “Ed Snack (495) Says:
    September 9th, 2011 at 3:45 pm
    Chris, then why do they use the moniker “Freedom Forum”. Astroturfing by the sound of it. When considering conflicts between freedom and restriction, the doubt should always lie with freedom, conflicts with “other values” is specious rubbish in most cases.”

    except where ‘increased freedom’ leads to all sorts of other negative social outcomes.

    assault on your person, burglary, financial crime, increased need for state assistance all sorts of issues.

    most keenly felt in your insurance premiums, to put it in bold-faced market economy terms.

    It’s a bubble in the wallpaperbut it has to go somewhere.

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