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8:34am on Wednesday, 23rd November, 2005:

Licensing Laws


At one minute past midnight tonight (which is to say tomorrow morning), England's World War I drinking laws are being replaced by, basically, Scotland's. Pubs and clubs can apply for a licence to stay open up to 24 hours a day. Oh, and cafés, which didn't need a special licence before, now need one to stay open later than 11pm.

The big concern being voiced in the papers is not that if the pubs stay open longer, people will drink more alcohol overall, but that it will lead to more binge drinking. This will in turn overstretch emergency services.

It doesn't have to be this way, though! If the government wants to prevent binge drinking, all it has to do is enact a law to add sleeping pills to booze in proportion to the alcohol content. People can't binge drink if they fall asleep after 10 pints, can they? Problem solved!

And if sleeping pills don't do the trick, there's always laxative as an alternative.

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Copyright © 2005 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).