The high price of alcohol in this country has forced drinkers to drink cheap, high alcohol content in their homes rather than in the social sphere. Many countries around the world including much of Europe and countries in Asia, like Japan, have much more relaxed drinking laws ( drinking in public is legal, it is much cheaper etc.) and they have far less of a problem than we do when it comes to alcohol related violence. New Zealand's problem is that we have created a culture where pre-loading to excess is promoted over acceptable and responsible ways of drinking.
If we encouraged people to drink socially, in bars, restaurants, or just generally in public, people would be more inclined to drink responsibly. increasing taxes on alcohol across the board will foster the "pre-loading' culture and beget more violence.
I agree that money should be funnelled into drug rehabilitation and education.
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