Next time you’re slapping your forehead at some unbearably self-righteous moral pronouncement by your local neighbourhood “progressive,” take a moment to consider this: maybe they just can’t help themselves.
Passing judgement on other people’s standards seems baked into the DNA of liberals and leftists. They can’t contain themselves, they HAVE to be condescending. Justin Trudeau demonstrates it every time he lets slip some sarcastic remark in front of the common folk — “Thanks for your donation,” “We like to say peoplekind.” The need to preen appears particularly acute among urban dwellers, but I imagine there’s a solid core of rural-based pompous twits out there as well. (Note to social media: please don’t take it on yourself to prove me correct in that last supposition.)
Thus, the Ontario government’s effort to nudge alcohol policies out of the Prohibition era is being greeted with just the sort of supercilious priggishness that so often accompanies “progressive” thought. Premier Doug Ford got a good dressing down from habitués of coffee bars and vegan eateries over his “buck a beer” campaign, on the presumption that no one this side of Fred Flintstone would be caught imbibing so cheap and lowly a beverage. If Ford had championed buck-a-Peroni it might have been different. Or buck-a-craft-IPA, beers that taste like a fruit salad being all the rage right now.
But that’s the whole thing with being an imperious bore. It’s all in the fine details. Plenty of imperious bores drink beer, they just like to establish lines of demarcation over which sort is acceptable, and which isn’t, because nothing says “progressive” like an arbitrary standard that divides the respectable from the riff-raff.
The neo-revolution Ford introduced in his government’s first budget produced a predictable cry of horror from those who consider themselves more qualified to dictate public taste. Policies on the sale of alcohol that have operated in civilized countries for decades, without producing whole populations of slobbering drunks, are still viewed as far too permissive for some still-active corners of Puritan Ontario. What about drunk driving? What about increased risk of liver disease? One educated onlooker remarked that “increasing access to cheap alcohol” was certain to aggravate these problems, which would no doubt be true if alcohol in Ontario was actually cheap. It’s not, and Ford has shown no sign of wanting to make it such. Buck-a-beer was a stunt with a very short shelf life.
New Democratic Party leader Andrea …read more