POLITICAL: New drink driving laws in Eire are stealing businesses


New drink driving laws could close half of Ireland’s pubs
Greater public safety means less indulgence
By ANTOINETTE KELLY, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer
Published Saturday, October 29, 2011, 7:23 AM
Updated Saturday, October 29, 2011, 7:32 AM

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A new drinking and driving law could lead to the closure of up to half the pubs in Ireland.

Irish publicans have reacted with scorn to new drink and driving legislation that reduced the blood alcohol limit to 50mg per 100mls of blood.

The new law has come into force this week, and it’s already being called a deadly blow to the pubs of rural Ireland. In fact, some publicans warn, the new restrictions could lead to the closure of up to half the pubs in the country.

Kerry County Council member and publican Bobby O’Connell told the Irish Examiner that vintners are convinced that up to 50 percent of all Irish pubs will be forced to shut down within the next five years. 

“Rural pubs are being decimated,” said O’Connell. “The recession and the off-licence trade have done irreparable damage to the pub trade and now we have this.”

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How can the politicians just steal these businesses?

If a society decides to virtually outlaw drinking, then it has the obligation to pay for these businesses.

As a little L libertarian, I think this is all wrong.

I believe that what was originally considered to be bad was fatalities or injuries from accidents as a result of drunk driving. Somehow it’s morphed into driving after having had a beer.

If that was true, my entire generation should be dead.

I think we need a better standard. (1) There has to be a injury or accident. (2) After conviction, there has to be a substantial penalty — financial and jail time — plus restitution. (3) Second offenses, multiple offense, should be impossible due to the jail terms.

Only then will society be protected from irresponsible people.

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