Just because one is considered to be “a responsible drinker” …

Comment on Council poll: Law & order candidates and alcohol restriction opponents top councillor poll, could threaten Mayor by Russell Guy.

Just because one is considered to be “a responsible drinker” doesn’t mean that they’re not an alcoholic. In fact, many reading this would agree. I know such people and was one myself.
An interpretation of early voting trends in the Alice Council elections is that those who supported law and order, anti-current and future restrictions on the seven days per week supply of alcohol, were not likely to give up their addiction so that the community could address the situation with a sober mind.
More especially when “responsbible” alcohol consumption exists at all levels of our community – in church elders, councillors, political leaders, Mums, Dads, business and binge drinkers of all ages.
Recent conservatively estimated claims that Australians face an escalating $15billion p.a. cost of alcohol abuse, are evidence that alcoholism is entrenched at epidemic levels, but the NT is way out in front of the national average.
However, if a conservative government in the UK can introduce a floor price, there’s hope that Australia might wake up to itself and applaud such initiatives of good governance.
Prime Minister David Cameron, has said that the United Kingdom couldn’t go on like this. One day, sufficient Australians may come to the same realisation and demand the same. Perhaps.

Russell Guy Also Commented

Council poll: Law & order candidates and alcohol restriction opponents top councillor poll, could threaten Mayor
To clarify my comments about those whom I said come from all levels of society and suffer from alcoholism in Alice Springs, it’s no shame to be addicted to this disease which is endemic to our society. There is help available in this community, many of whom do care and acknowledging that you have this addiction and need help is, of course, the classic AA approach to healing.
The shame is that this town is living in denial that it has a serious alcohol problem, statistically recognised as twice the national average, yet it was barely considered an issue by candidates representing the people in the local government election.
Despite having so many alcohol outlets, universally recognised means of avoiding the problems that Alice has with related crime and health issues are cause for such divided opinion.
Organisations like PAAC are lambasted, when they should be applauded for trying to bring some order into an alcohol-fuelled chaos that operates seven days a week.
It’s not as if they’re commentating from a vacuum as more than a few of their members are dealing with the fall-out on a daily basis in their professional lives as am I. Others castigate the NT Liquor Commission for being “weak.” Some say reinstate the “Living With Alcohol” program, but avoid the issue of restricting the excessive supply. Meanwhile, those who attempt to placate their addiction in public are considered to be a problem, rather than a victim.
My point is that my friend who is a church elder and an alcoholic is not alone in his struggle, but I know his despair is more keenly felt because this wide-spread insidious evil is considered normal.
The ASTC candidates who said “show me a solution,” or “I need to be persuaded” and worse, those who see no need for further restriction on a seven day per week supply schedule, leaving many voters confused, have been diminished by one independent candidate whose How to Vote card showed a last minute change by stating that he was prepared to take a tough stance on alcohol if elected. He won’t be, but he’s a hero in my eyes.


Council poll: Law & order candidates and alcohol restriction opponents top councillor poll, could threaten Mayor
My sincere apologies to Steve Brown for attributing the post that I responded to below as his.
While the AS News has a policy on recommending full names, I’ve said it to you before Anonymous Steve, get out your driver’s licence, if you have one, or some other form of identity and have the courage to declare your citizenship.
You may take the post attributed to Mr Brown as inferring that you lack moral courage on several counts.


Council poll: Law & order candidates and alcohol restriction opponents top councillor poll, could threaten Mayor
There’s a case for the blind leading the blind, Steve and I’m not the first to make it.
A reasonable person wouldn’t see my comments as “lashing out.” David Cameron has said, government “is not always about doing what is popular, but what is right.” With the same kinds of problems, you are unable to make that distinction.
I merely present a case, whereas you overstate yours. Totalitarian dictators suffer the same affliction and from that basis, it will be interesting to observe your performance in the chamber, should you make it.
British PM, David Cameron has used an evidence based platform to back his courageous stance against enslaving legislation and intends to amend it. The trade in human souls was handled the same way, thanks largely, to Wilbur Wilbeforce in the British Parliament, repealing or reforming legislation which was perceived to be working against the inclusion of humanity.
I know a church elder in this town who is an alcoholic, not that it gives me any greater claim to social skill than you, but it does reveal you as a man who thinks only he knows this town.
On March 16 @ 6.08pm, you wrote, “there are few if any that have my overall broad brush of experience, practical expertise, history of association and general knowledge of Alice Springs, what makes it tick, and more importantly what could make it tick a lot better.”
Obviously, a man so poorly acquainted with statistics, is making such a claim in ignorance of who constitutes “the few”. Not that I expect this to make any restraining impression, but I’m not fooled by your mandate.
As a conservative politician, David Cameron has at least seen the light in reducing alcohol-related crime by further restriction, not just by law and order.


Recent Comments by Russell Guy

Aboriginal flag on Anzac Hill: the nays have it 
@ My Opinion, posted 20.2.18. 12:22pm:
I’m an amateur historian, but there’s an argument that the geo-political climate that caused Great Britain to raise the Union Jack over what became the colonies turned out to Australia’s advantage. At least, wisdom in hindsight suggests it so.
Indigenous or First Nations people suffered beyond measure and today assert a form of sovereignty through a limited Native Title that is not altogether historically retroactive, leading to social issues bundled together under slogans such as Closing the Gap.
There is always a relative unity among all peoples constituting a nation, but what seems undeniable is that united we stand, divided we fall.
Councils around the country fly the Aboriginal flag, but not, it seems, all that often from military sites, which still serve to unite a country in a geo-political sense, most often concerned with sovereign borders.
The social problems remain, so do other strategic sites from which the Aboriginal flag can be flown as a symbol of unity within the Alice community.


Congress call: Put full-time police back at bottle-shops
@ Surprised. Posted 6/2/18. 7:40AM. Re your comment about costs related to harmful levels of alcohol consumption within NT communities:
“You know, they fail to take into account that currently we pay $50m in the Territory in relation to alcohol sales in taxes. That money unfortunately goes straight to the Commonwealth so there is some arguments there how the Territory Government gets that money back” (Des Crowe, CEO. NT branch of the Australian Hotels Association. ABC 6/2/18, responding to the NT Police Association call for industry responsibility).
This appears to be a game of “pass the buck” with Liquor Inspectors and “new technology” attached to the BDR as a “way forward.”
Smoking in public places is banned and the health warnings that now appear on tobacco products have helped create a greater awareness of the issues related to the peer enforcement of smoking, but the tobacco industry didn’t go quietly.
Perhaps, the alcohol industry needs to admit responsibility and leadership by comparing the costs to public health for its products, but that would affect the corporate bottom line.
The $50m in taxes is miniscule in comparison to the billions spent on alcohol-related health issues that taxpayers subsidise on an annual basis.
That money could well be spent elsewhere.
It’s not an economic issue, but one of leadership in community values and political will.


Congress call: Put full-time police back at bottle-shops
@ Laurence, posted February 3, 2018. 6:17pm: Re your comment about a “radical rethink”.
Leaving aside the suite of measures so far employed to address the harmful levels of alcohol consumption in the NT and notwithstanding the absence of a floor price, there is something in what you say.
Stewardship is an old fashioned word for community values.
In the 1920s, Rev. John Flynn, who knew something about the health of people in the bush, wrote that we would have to render an account one day.


Congress call: Put full-time police back at bottle-shops
There is a groundswell of awareness about the use of methamphetamine (Ice) at a community level throughout Australia.
Most people seem to have direct or anecdotal experience of families being tragically affected, but if it was better understood that ‘for every person who uses methamphetamine in a year there are 85 drinking alcohol;for every person addicted to methamphetamine there are 20 addicted to alcohol;for every ambulance call-out for methamphetamine problems there are 25 for alcohol;for every methamphetamine presentation to an Emergency Department there are 30 for alcohol;for every amphetamine-related death there are 65 alcohol deaths’ (source: Emeritus Professor Ian Webster, Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education newsletter 2/2/18), the alcohol problem confronting communities in the NT might be considered more seriously.


THE TROLL by Blair McFarland
Thanks for this, Blair. As Monty Python would have it, say no more.


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