Posts Tagged ‘Politics’

A Boozer Busting Budget

March 27, 2010

Alastair Darling in his budget released the usual tax drinkers line, raising prices a couple of percent above inflation on beer and most other alcohols.
Nothing new?

Look again, he has also announced that tax on cider will rise at 10% above inflation to “bring cider prices in line with strong beers”

It’s an issue when it comes to taxation, the minority are ruining it for the majority. The people who drink irresponsibly have led to this 10% tax rise.

David Cameron came out quickly after this and said that this tax is ridiculous and will hit west country cider presses massively.

For once, I agree with him.

One of the large cider brands has already launched an advertising campaign announcing that they will absorb the 10% tax rise… Which sounds good on the face of it, but then you realise this is going against exactly what the Chancellor was targetting.
In effect it is an extra 10% tax on all revenue of that producer, but nothing to the kids who are smashing parks up at night…

On the other hand, the more respectable, and I would go so far as to say prestigious cider makers in the west country might find themselves in serious financial problems as a result of this tax. They are already, because of economies of scale, higher priced than the big pissed for a pound cider producers.

Now I am not saying for one minute that you can compare the two, I would go so far as to say that cider from somewhere such as Henry Westons can not even be classed as the same type of drink as something like white lightning.

But that extra 10% could be enough to push someone to get a bottle of wine instead.

The point is, something does have to be done, but this is not the answer.
On the spot fines for drinking in public areas, although draconian, seem to be somewhat effective in some areas.

There could also be stronger punishments for 15 year olds drinking cider on the street, instead of the current “pour down the gutter” punishment, which I am sure leaves them suitably punished until they get their hands on another pound….

The cynic in me of course is screaming that its just a cheap ploy to gain revenue, like the ploy of a 50% tax bracket was a cheap ploy to gain politcal capital.

Either way, don’t use the excuse of promoting social harmony for taxing the everyman on one of the few pleaseures we can still afford in this life…