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Drink, for tomorrow we die

More people die prematurely from alcohol in Europe than anywhere else, according to research published in The Lancet – and we only have governments to blame.

This research claims that, as various governments in Europe have reduced taxes on alcohol, people are drinking more. Cheaper booze = greater consumption. It’s not rocket science. Maybe rocket-fuel science in the case of some vodkas in Poland, but…

In Poland, for example, reductions to state taxes on vodka and a consequent fall in the price have been followed by an abrupt increase in alcohol sales, from seven litres per capita/year in 2002 to almost 10 litres in 2008, “and a yearly increase in mortality rates attributable to alcohol of 6·64 deaths per 100 000 in men aged 45–64 years.”

Humans like to do things that are bad for their health. We quite like that.