Thursday , October 17 2019
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Tag Archives: alcohol

Special licences

Whenever a Rugby World Cup is on, Parliament has to legislate around the bureaucratic hurdles that District Licensing Committees have put in the way of issuing special licences. Special licenses are supposed to allow bars to open at hours other than their normal licensed hours, if there's some kind of special event on. And Parliament even noted international sporting events in the rationale for the special licences.Aimee Dartnall goes through the problems in how that works in practice:...

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Drinking Freedom

I plug Ben Powell and Bob Lawson's latest book in my column in this week's Insights newsletter: Drinking freedom The very best part of grad school was the drinking. Well, not so much the drinking. Too often, the beer was stuff that would make an Export Gold taste like Export Gold had taste. It was the arguing about economics, over beer, until close to sunrise, with other people who cared deeply about ideas. That was heaven – despite the bad beer.Professor Ben Powell was a year behind me in...

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I can’t believe we’re still talking about the dumb BERL number

Sunday night, TV3 started in on what looks to be a series on the evils of alcohol.  The Ministry of Health says harm from alcohol is now costing New Zealand more than $7 billion every year. In fact, every Kiwi pays $1635 a year fixing up the problems from alcohol.Investigations Reporter Michael Morrah visited the frontlines with Auckland Police in the first part of his 'Because it Matters' series. The Ministry of Health might have been one of the co-commissioners of the BERL report, but...

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Some sense from Emily

More oddities from the Coroners' Office brings a response from Emily Writes over at The Spinoff - and from 400 doctors! Yet pathologist Dr Simon Stables and Coroner Debra Bell could not ascertain Sapphire’s direct cause of death. Somehow, as we have seen before with coroners, this has been translated into a blanket message for mothers. This time it’s not to have alcohol if you’re breastfeeding. This is an easy comment to make – as popular as “don’t let your child walk to school” or “don’t...

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Great Kleiman quote

The New York Times obit for Mark Kleiman is excellent. Here's the conclusion: “If you do drug policy and you’re asked whether you use drugs, you’ve got two choices,” he replied. “You can say, ‘Yes, I’m a lawbreaker. Please come arrest me and ignore everything I say, because I’m a bad person.’ Or ‘No, actually, I don’t know what the hell I’m talking about.’“Since neither of those is an advantageous admission,” he added, “I don’t answer the question.” The Drug Foundation hosted Kleiman a few...

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Morning Roundup

The closing of a big set of browser tabs brings a few gems.Rohan Pearce at Computerworld notes a warning from the Law Council of Australia that Oz's encryption law breaks a few international privacy standards, and could then come into conflict with GDPR.  Jacob Sullum at Reason goes through some shonky anti-vaping research that claims vaping causes heart attacks, but that ignores that the heart attacks happened before the smokers switched to vaping. Shoeshine over at the NBR warns that woke...

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Morning roundup

This morning's worthies on the closing of the browser tabs:This one was a long time coming: difficulty in insuring apartments in Wellington (NBR, maybe $). I wonder whether parametric insurance paying out a sufficient amount in the event of a Mercalli VIII event would satisfy bank mortgage requirements. Stuff has a new data visualisation up that they're calling the Homicide Report. They introduce a particular innovation: car crashes involving alcohol use are counted as homicides. I fully...

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YIMBY – local bottle shop edition

The local Khandallah DVD shop finally closed down. We'd rented DVDs there roughly once a month - there's a lot of older stuff that just doesn't stream in New Zealand.* So, it looks like we'll have to drive out to Aro Video a bit more often for those things.In its place, a bottle shop has applied for permission to open. The Council website provides a lot of ways for people to lodge objections but doesn't make any provision for those, like me, who'd like to say Yes In My Back Yard.So I've...

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Reader mailbag – Licensing trusts edition

Karl du Fresne had a great 2017 story on New Zealand's anachronistic alcohol licensing trusts.The West Auckland trust is coming under a bit of pressure from a residents' group that would like to see things opened up, removing the trust's monopoly. TrustAction's Nick Smale writes to let me know what they've been up to: I believe most of the licensing trusts' public support results from misinformation and misunderstanding. I've been surprised and disappointed with the actions of both our...

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A regulated market model

Over at Newsroom Pro ($), I make the case for basing legislation and regulation for cannabis markets on our existing rules for spirits.The government has to have a referendum on cannabis by November 2020 and might want to have it earlier than that to not coincide with the general election. All the experts say that the referendum question should ask voters to endorse or reject a piece of developed legislation, with rejection meaning that the status quo stands. Writing legislation and...

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