Sudden increase in consumption of alcohol (impeachment post I thought I'd never make)
|Hankyoreh reports, printing a Yonhap article, that consumption of alcohol increased sharply after the impeachment of the president was passed in the parliament. Can beer sales went up more than 50% overnight, and soju sold 12.6% more than last week in LG Mart stores. In the 680 LG 25 stores in and around Seoul, beer and soju sales went up 14% and 17%. The piece is titled as if there was a direct relevance, but Mr. Hong of Lotte Mart tells that "one cannot establish a connection between the impeachment of the president and the increase of alcohol sales, but right after the impeachment was passed, alcohol sales increased notably."|
So what does this mean? That Hankyoreh wants to tell us that impeachment was not only bad for democracy but bad for the mental health or stress level of the citizens and through the increased drinking also bad for health? I'm not yet sure that bad times increase overall drinking (in my country drinking decreased during the economic depression in early 90s), but I've been told in Korea that in the 1970s when the social atmosphere (sahoe punwigi) was not good, people drank a lot. Difficult to find data on this (perhaps tomorrow at my department desk with a quick connection), but at least the figures in the tables below would show that there's been decrease since 1980 (table 4).
Here are some OECD figures as an Excel table; pretty constant since 1990 and nothing dramatic, but no older figures. In 2000, ROK 8.9 litres, Finland 8.6, USA 8.4 ('99).
Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang: food/alcohol ∙ Koreanpolitics ∙ Koreansociety