Via The Fact Compiler who, as a drinking, smoking libertarian is not a fan of drinking and smoking bans, the Observer reports that the BMA (well, one anaesthetist, as it happens, but let’s not quibble) have fallen for the Boris line on drinking on public transport:

“Why should drunks be able to disturb people’s journeys in that way?” she asked. “If a ban in London is working, why not extend it across the UK?” She said more people would use public transport if the threat from drunks was removed.

Well, the ban in London isn’t working, since it’s not enforced – a week or so back, as I was returning from a friend’s birthday and about to board, a girl staggered off a westbound Piccadilly at Leicester Square clutching an empty wine bottle, which she proceeded to place on top of the platform help point before staggering off in the direction of the elevators.  It’s also pretty clear that drunks are still perfectly capable of using public transport, otherwise half of London wouldn’t get home on Friday nights.  In fact, going back to a question Boris asked the audience at State of London on Thursday, it occurs to me I’ve seen more people drinking on public transport than the vaunted transport team policemen in the last two years.

What we have, then, is someone who’s believed the PR hype that Boris made the world better with a stroke of his managerialist pen and this is now starting to trickle into a national context.  This is the problem of PR led evidence free policy making, it self-replicates unless you get the virus killer out early.

 
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