Middle-class workers mostly to blame for UK alcohol crisisWoah! Easy there. Let's just work through that headline forensically, shall we?
Crisis? I thought it was only an 'epidemic' after no longer being a 'problem', when did it become a 'crisis'? Especially since ALL evidence points to the exact opposite - that the percentage of regular drinkers is falling; total consumption is falling; and drink-related arrests are down. As crises go, it's not a very scary one.
Still, some people admittedly do have concerns, but I'm not convinced that it's the 'middle-class' mentioned in the title who are clogging up A&E wards at weekends, or running around town centres puking with their knickers round their ankles, for example.
They are 'workers', we are told, so presumably pay tax and national insurance contributions towards the NHS, as well as heavy sin taxes on their chosen tipple. They've therefore paid handsomely for their treatment should they become ill as a result. Of course, if others object anyway, we could always just scrap the NHS and have a system based on personal insurance contributions**. Want that, righteous? Nah, didn't think so.
How, then, does this hack come to such a ridiculous headline?
Government guidelines state men should drink no more than three to four units a day. The limit for women is two to three units - the equivalent of one to two glasses of a medium strength wine.Aha! Now I understand.
Among the middle classes, 41 per cent of men and 35 per cent of women exceeded the recommended guidelines.
So what the article should have said is that it's mostly the middle-class who ignore the state's arse-wibbling and live their lives how they see fit, not to satisfy some miserable finger-wagging Westminster prodnose.
Or did the Standard's editor really ask for 200 words of shallow gullibility to fill a quarter of page 11?
** But even then the middle-class would still not be 'mostly' causing any problem whatsoever.