Monday, 30 April 2012

Historical Pastimes: Binge Drinking for the Masses

Beer Street: Note the Frenchman being lifted one handed -
Proof, Sir that beer is good for you. 
None of your sissy wine
"This world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feelHorace Walpole
Any politician that tries to appease the Daily Mail* and to genuflect before the mirage of faux middle class outrage, is not a politician but a piece of shit wrapped in cling film to make themselves respectable. Dave the Lizard pretty much said as much back in 2005 
Politicians attempt to appeal to the lowest common denominator by posturing with tough policies and calling for crackdown after crackdown.
Dave has since, like most politicians, shown himself to be a clingshit by revoking these words by pandering to the tabloids, who routinely make stuff up [more than I do], regurgitate the beliefs of their employers and are happy to condemn casting stones in all directions but throw hissyfits when a pebble heads back in their direction. Dave has shown the clingshit side of his lizardness by an unswerving loyalty to bashing binge drinking, which I have previously shown is sanctified by Jesus. This is of course wrong and I have argued that Binge Drinking should form a central plank of the new Citizenship tests. Dave is also forgetting the historical culture of binge drinking that soaks these isles, including the Greatest Bastard of All Time, Sir Winston Churchill no less who I believe may have said this until his aides stopped him
"We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall drink in France, we shall drink on the seas and the oceans, we shall drink with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall drink on the beaches, we shall drink on the landing grounds, we shall drink in the fields and in the streets, we shall drink in the hills; we shall never surrender" 
Following this blunderbuss of alliteration, given in a radio address in June 1940, and hidden by the applause he is alleged to have whispered
"and we shall fight with the butt end of broken beer bottles because that's bloody well all we've got."
If this latter part is true, it shows an innate understanding of being a bastard. We drink and we fight. Let us do that without Middle Class interference which will make us miserable.

William Hogarth's Beer:
Can sinewy Strength impart,
And wearied with Fatigue and Toil
Can cheer each manly Heart.
Successfully advance,
Labour and Art upheld by Thee
We quaff Thy balmy Juice with Glee
And Water leave to France.
Genius of Health, thy grateful Taste
Rivals the Cup of Jove,
And warms each English generous Breast
With Liberty and Love!
The prohibitive duty was gradually reduced and finally abolished in 1743. Francis Place later wrote that enjoyments for the poor of this time were limited: they had often had only two, "sexual intercourse and drinking", and that "drunkenness is by far the most desired" as it was cheaper and its effects more enduring.
Or a great man once said to me, 'a beer will never refuse you, a woman will'
A controversial great man Noam Chomsky, who may or may not be a communist rat said
"Very commonly substances are criminalized because they're associated with what's called the dangerous classes, you know, poor people, or working people. So for example in England in the 19th century, there was a period when gin was criminalized and whiskey wasn't, because gin is what poor people drink. ... In the early stages of Prohibition in the United States, one of the targets was immigrant workers, these guys hanging around the saloons in New York, gotta go after them. The rich guys in upstate New York, they're gonna drink no matter what, you know, they wanna come home after work, they'll drink. But, go after those guys"
It was important for the people to escape the horrific conditions in the Victorian age
For the middle classes, psychoanalysis offered itself as a possibility to cure them of their mental afflictions. However, the proletarians, the servants, the small tradesmen, and office clerks were provided with cheap drugs - commodities which were consumed on a massive scale and, naturally, also made handsome profits. Alcohol played the most important role by far....Friedrich Engels considered it 'a moral and physical necessity', that 'a very great number of workers succumb to alcoholism' because of the catastrophic conditions of their lives. In the 1870's, there were 133,840 breweries in England and Wales, and a pub for every 182 inhabitants. Up to the early years of the First World War, alcohol was the most important opiate of the people, which according to Lloyd George, 'caused more destruction than the German U-boats put together' [Siegfried Zielinski, Audiovisions: cinema and television as entr'actes in history pp 84-5]
Yet, even when we hurtle forward through the waves of FutureHistory the problem remains. The dark lord Campbell, who likes to sex up his writingsaid
To read the headlines about Britain's drink problem, you might think it is largely an issue of teenage binge-drinking in town centres up and down the country. You would be very wrong. Young people drinking too much is a problem. But it is not the biggest drink problem Britain faces. The real problem comes in the form of our hidden alcoholics...The Office for National Statistics tells us that the professional classes are now the most frequent drinkers in the country...the binge-drinking stereotype is neither accurate nor helpful. The issue is largely about price. Pubs charge a [fucking fortune] for a pint. Supermarkets don't. It is a sad paradox that the decline in pubs has come alongside what seems to be a rise in drinking and alcohol-related problems.
But hey I think we've all learned something today. It's okay to drink if you can afford it and are in power [despite the bible saying this is a big no-no for princes - which is always worth reminding politicians when they appeal to a higher moral authority]. You obviously deserve sympathy and understanding whilst you are lying to bomb the planet, invade the neighbours or gatecrash a formula one party for the drinks. Everyone else can be thrown in a cell, which once privatised, will have a pub next door to your cell. You lucky, lucky bastards.

*As was shown in the 1930's and as politicians have been quick to tell us whenever a leader questions the free trade commandment, appeasement does not work. 

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