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Friday, April 11, 2008

Over-50s told to cut back on booze


This article is from The Publican. If you go into Manchester, or most other UK towns, on a Saturday night you will encounter the unedifying sight of yoofs of both sexes who are paralytically drunk. Over the weekend, 90% of all admissions to hospitals’ accident and emergency department are inebriated kids. There is an epidemic of liver disease amongst young adults resulting from excessive consumption of alcohol. Things are bad, bad, bad.

The response of the UK Government to this problem is fascinating. Rather than target its marketing efforts to sort out the problem it balances them with an equal amount of attention aimed at the kid’s parents. Because it doesn’t want to be seen to be singling out one group of people for special attention it defuses its message by broadening it to the people at the other end of the age spectrum.

During my recent visit to the US I witnessed a similar response by Barack Obama to the videos of his lunatic pastor. Rather than condemning the guy or maybe sympathizing with him for his mental instability, he defused his condemnation by saying that his white mother had also made racist comments. It is an interesting communications ploy. In my view it is totally ineffective but that is a personal opinion.

Coming back to the drunken older louts. Have a look at this dreadful poster ad that is accompanying the campaign. I don’t blame the advertising agency for relieving the fools at Manchester of their money but surely they could have come up with something a bit better than this. Dick Stroud

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