Brewer's Droop #182

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Following on from what I said in the last Droop, the banning of alcohol ads is heating up nicely I see.

The sensible sector is moaning about lost advertising revenue and jobs etc., whilst the loonies are flexing their muscles and saying the ban is “not negotiable”.

The bottom line is that one side is saying that lost revenue will be R2.6 billion and 30,000 people will lose their breadwinners amongst a myriad of other awful consequences. The other side (particularly that Warren Whitfield bloke) says that the Sensible Sector’s study is “not objective (because) what it fails to address is that alcohol abuse costs us R20billion per annum, as well as lost lives.”

I’ll leave all the analyses to Chris Moerdyk who sums it all up very neatly – but that last comment by Whitfield (CEO of the “Addiction Action Campaign” which is against just about everything) cannot be left unanswered.

Any twit that says “alcohol abuse costs R20billion” in the same breath as supporting an advertising ban on alcohol is either truly stupid or is taking some substance which definitely should be banned.

Whitfield’s guess of R20billion may very well be true BUT, it seems he assumes that banning alcohol ads will result in a saving of R20billion – which is absolute nonsense of course. He’s simply twisting the numbers to suit his puritanical poppycock.

The point in that abuse of ANYTHING is going to cause harm to people – and there are laws to prevent this. Instead of waving the “magic banning wand” and expecting alcohol abuse to end when the advertising stops, it would be preferable to spend more time on enforcing the abuse laws – like drunk driving, and educating the drinking public about Foetal Alcohol Syndrome and alcoholism.

The problem with Whitfield and his pontifical mates is that they realise their argument is very weak but are determined not to listen to anyone. Rather like a convocation of clergy when the bishop has farted extempore.


If you haven’t been following the hacking scandal in Britain then you really should (actually don’t bother, there’s sod all any of us can do anyway). As the entire debacle unfolds it’s obviously just getting worse and worse for newspapers all over the world.

In South Africa the ANC will react like lightning – well, they can move quickly when they have a mind to – to highlight the fact that if UK journalists are so lawless then it’s axiomatic that the SA hacks are too.

It’s just the kind of ammunition that the proposed Media Tribunal needs. How soon will Julius mention it? (I’m offering 4/6 odds-on that it’ll be within the next week).


Something’s always bothered me about the banning of smoking in aeroplanes (and no, this isn’t a rant against the anti-smokers) because ever since they banned it I’m sure I feel worse after a flight.

Up until now I’ve blamed it on the decreasing amount of leg room and the fact that there always seems to be some seriously sick people on board which is why I feel so crap.

Perhaps you’ve experienced the same thing? Try and remember how you felt when smoking was allowed and you may find you agree with me.

The thing is that I now know I’m right because I have it on the highest possible authority (QI – best TV programme ever).

Stephen Fry posed the question, “Was it a good idea for airlines to ban smoking?” and, after the usual banter, he had this to say:

“It was almost certainly a bad idea, it was a lousy idea in fact because when smoking was allowed, the cabin air was replaced with fresh air every three minutes – but now the airlines save money (up to 6% of their fuel bills) by using a mixture of fresh and recycled air, using under half the amount of fresh air for comfort.

“Increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the cabin causes dizziness and nausea and allowing viruses to thrive. Passengers THINK that because they can’t smell smoke, the air is fresher – this is not so. Apart from anything else it has dramatically increased the number of air rage incidents.

“One of the earliest reported incidents of air rage involved a passenger in First Class, probably trying to take his mind off cigarettes by drinking too much. When he was refused another drink he decided to lodge his displeasure and shat on top of the food trolley.

“On the financial level, the airlines actually made money so, if you are a shareholder then you could say it was a reasonably good idea – but it was a bad idea because the health of the passengers suffers enormously.

“So let people smoke, the air gets scrubbed much better and people are in a better mood all round.”

Smoking on planes is good for everyone. So there.


Bonny Richardson has asked me to tell all her friends in the industry that you desperately need a break – and that her new Camelot Health and Wellness Spa at San Lameer on the South Coast is just the right place to go.

Give her a call, and when you do tell her you heard about it in the Droop and she’ll give you a 20% discount.

I’ll meet you in the mud bath.

Her number is 083 601 8407


Remember I mentioned recently that we’d soon be launching another database App? This will be the one where those who provide a service to the industry can be contactable through the other Brewer’s Databases – people such as freelance writers, consultants, media planners, PR practitioners, recruitment agencies, photographers and so forth.

So, if you’re one of those specialists then we need to hear from you. It costs absolutely nothing to be listed and you WILL be seen by leaders in the industry who subscribe to any of the Brewers databases. Please follow the link below, complete the simple form, and then wait to hear from us:

The database itself will be launched very soon now – the moment we’ve captured the data, so please take a few moments to do this as soon as you can?


Anyway, the sun’s shining and winter’s almost over!


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