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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
RadioSerenade Offline
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Is It Ever OK to Kill an Industry? - March 8th 2016, 01:29 AM

I have to be very quick, because there is a class in a few minutes planning to throw me out of the classroom, which is, of course, why I waste time on the first sentence! There has been a consistent backlash now, coming from the community and particular people in the music and commerce industries, saying that Lockout Laws in the Sydney area of King's Cross have gone too far and turned the city into a Ghost Town. The laws require venues that serve alcohol to turn down patrons after 1:00am and then call last drinks at 3:00am. Bottle shops cannot remain open beyond 10:00pm. King's Cross is an entertainment district in the city of Sydney, infamous for being the site of alcohol fuelled violence. This all reached a head for me last week, when I was listening to an interview of a business owner in Sydney, whose restaurant was forced to shut down due to the changes.


Parts of what the business owner was saying were somewhat correct, but some of what he was saying demonstrated complete incoherence. People have condemned the government for these measures, saying that they are killing the nightlife, which is not a very outrageous thing.

The death of the nightlife and the cessation of the service of alcohol beyond 3:00am is not a public interest emergency.

However, this made me think about alcohol as an industry, and also tobacco, and how it is sometimes thought that the eradication of the industries would be desirable. I do not understand why drinking is a part of Australian culture and especially such late night and heavy drinking. The man, in the interview, said that for people who work the night shift, going out and having a drink after work is not an unreasonable thing to do and it is also not possible under the amendments. However, it is so easy to adjust. I work the night shift too and if I want a drink after work, I cannot get it. That is, of course, unless I go to the bottle shop beforehand and keep it in the fridge during my shift.

The incoherence as aforementioned is in the idea that the Police Commissioner, Andrew Scipione is somehow incompetent because he does not "believe in alcohol" and that the Commissioner of a 16,000 man police force is "in charge of alcohol". Anyways, back to the amendments, this has allegedly turned Kings Cross into a Ghost Town, but is that necessarily a bad thing? I mean it is similar to the mining industry. People say the mining industry should remain open and thriving because of the amount of jobs it creates and the very real effect it has on the prosperity of entire communities. However, I could think of nothing better than to have the mining and logging industries die, from a climate change perspective, but then I would kill of thousands upon thousands of jobs.

Thoughts on such points?

I will say, just quickly, that the government really has missed the point somewhat on the issue of the frustration and subsequent violence of people from that area. The cause of the frustration and subsequent violence is not the incurable evil of the patrons, it is the lack of public transport options available. Trains and busses do not run for half the night and taxi drivers often reject intoxicated people. Uber drivers also charged gigantor amounts for "peak periods".

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  (#2 (permalink)) Old
BDF Offline
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Re: Is It Ever OK to Kill an Industry? - March 8th 2016, 10:45 AM

On rare occasions, it may be necessary. But this would be extreme. I generally wouldn't support something like it. "Banning alcohol" to a greater or lesser extent (directly or indirectly by clamping down on nightclubs), would just force it into the black market in the most extreme case. I can't see how that would solve the problems you mentioned.

Really, if there are cultural problems with alcohol (or with anything), then it is not very smart to look to pin the blame on any one person or group of people, or public service (like the public transport you mention). That is called scapegoating, or looking for an enemy to point your finger at and bring people to your side. It is political.

Poor public transport may be part of the cause. Cheap alcohol maybe another. Irresponsible upbringing by parents. Crappy culture amongst youths and in social media which promotes alcohol. Inadequate policing. A fractured legal system which fails to meet law breakers with consequences.

See... by acknowledging that a lot more people contribute to the problem, you don't bring people to your side. More often in fact, you just make enemies of every person and group you blame. Childish defensive reactions dominate those situations. Even if it is only a minority of people who react that way, they still have the loudest voice.

That's part of the reason why politicians lie. They can't fucking tell the truth, because many average people simply can't handle it... can't handle things like being told that they're a "bad parent", even though it may be at least slightly true.

I know my reply is pretty general, and doesn't address your question much. Going into the details of it would be too time consuming. I really have a lot to say about binge drinking culture and such things. I've lived in several countries, and seen people's attitudes to these things, and different systems governments put in place to cope with them. There would be just too much for me to talk about.


"I don't care about politics"
Then politics doesn't care about you either. Truth. You've got to make your voice heard, if you want to be listened to. But that's too logical for some people, so let me go a step further. Not making your voice heard, leaves other people free to hijack it by speaking on your behalf, even if they don't actually give a shit about you. That's politics. So, make your voice heard. That's not a quote from anywhere. That's just me.

Last edited by BDF; March 9th 2016 at 07:19 AM.
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