Ireland’ ranks 4th in the league table of the worst places in the European Union to ‘eat, drink, smoke and vape’.
The EU Nanny State index, compiled by the Institute of Economic Affairs in London, in partnership with EPICENTRE (the European Policy Information Centre), is published in Ireland by the Hibernia Forum today.
Eamon Delaney of the Hibernia Forum, writes:
This is without even factoring in new measures, like proposed calorie counts on restaurant menus, a controversial sugar tax and ridiculous notions like reducing the playing of jingles on ice-cream vans to prevent children over-eating ice cream and getting obese….
Enough is never enough for the authorities, with smokers forced into virtual seclusion to partake of their (still legal) habit – and so far unable to avail of the ‘reduced risk’ smoking products which the Government appears unwilling to give them the alternative of.
This is a strange approach, and a hypocritical one, given that the government gets so much tax in actual cigarettes.
It is the same with alcohol, where the State takes over 50pc of the retail price in tax, despite preaching about its ills.
And the same prohibitive approach as was used on cigarettes is now focused on alcohol, with a mooted ban on the low-cost selling of alcohol in supermarkets, as well as a proposal by the Oireachtas health committee to raise the price of wine so that no bottle can be bought for less than €10, for ‘public health reasons’.
This is an utterly unfair sledgehammer approach which punishes the many for the sins of the few.
Plus, there is also absolutely no evidence that such punitive pricing will improve public health. Wine drinkers are hardly the problem end of the drinking culture. The experts must surely know this, but they press ahead regardless with what seems like yet another Nanny State edict, seized upon by attention-seeking politicians and quangos.
….The growing Nanny State issue is very important, as it goes to the heart of those who believe that the State, and government, should be tackling almost all of our problems, and those who believe that too much personal and parental responsibility is already being taken away.