Had a feeling it would turn out this way, I will just continue getting what I can physically carry on my yearly sojourn to Majorca. I seldom drink at home anyway so all I get is enough for me for Christmas. I much prefer the social atmosphere of the pub for having a few drinks.
I would have come to the same decision, for several reasons:-
1. The UK has a serious alcohol-abuse problem. The number of alcohol-related deaths has almost doubled in the period 1991/2005, and anything which makes it easier/cheaper for people (particularly young people) to buy alcohol is not exactly a good idea.
2. Cigarette smoking is a known and serious health hazard, and one of the ways government can act to reduce tobacco consumption is by the imposition of high duty levels. Providing people with access to cheap supplies just doesn't make sense.
3. The tax revenue lost as a result would have to be clawed back, and this would mean non-drinkers subsidising the drinkers. Increased tax burdens already chill the blood of politicians looking to be re-elected, and European judges are equally averse to make judgments that result in higher levels of taxation across the board. Far better to maintain spending taxes/duties - the more you buy the more tax you pay.
4. Small retailers would suffer badly, particularly those corner shops which rely heavily on alcohol/tobacco sales to survive. In any other circumstance this forum would be ringing to the sound of people rushing to defend the small trader. Small shopkeepers all over the UK must be sleeping that little bit better tonight.