Let’s stop MPs drinking and lawmaking
At BHP Billiton sites you have to be able to blow 0.00 on an alcohol breathalyzer before walking into any facility. This is not only to prevent operators of machinery from causing harm, but also to prevent poor decisions being made by anybody that could also cause harm.
It’s a very real rule, and jobs are at stake if you break it.
At 7am on my first day at a South African Aluminium site each person walking through the turnstyles into the offices was breathalyzed. In the months following I was breathalyzed many more times
- At another site two of us suspected that an external contractor, as he arrived at the security desk, had been drinking. Our concerns were not followed up immediately by the two security people present (including the security boss) and so they (and the drunk contractor) found themselves turfed off site that day.
It’s the same with any heavy industrial plant, and the same with many other institutions, such as banks, in many countries. You are simply going to be at much higher risk of making poor decisions when you have been drinking.
Watching parliament tonight* I am shocked at what I see. At least one of the speakers tonight showed visible signs of drinking, and the behaviour in general seems to be the sort that is exacerbated by the consumption of alcohol.
Why can our lawmakers be drunk when they are making laws?
How can they be fit to legislate but not fit to drive?
Can’t we insist on our lawmakers on being sober when they are in the House of Parliament?
Let’s breathalise them all randomly as they walk into the chamber, and let’s turf them out if they blow positive, and publish the results.
* Lance Wiggs is an independent consultant providing management, strategy, growth and valuation consulting to industrial, media and internet based businesses. The above was originally published on December 11, 2008 on Lancewiggs.com.