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Ukraine: Akhmetov and Alcoholism

Ukrainiana writes about the connection between alcoholism in Ukraine and the country's richest man.

7 comments

  • My partner is an alcoholic. I know a bit about alcoholism. Ukraine wouldn’t be the only country with a rising alcohol problem.

    For teenagers I think one of the major causes is a disaffection by the young with prospects in life.

    If there is little or no perceived hope a teenager will drift towards drink innocently and one day find that he has lost the choice whether he drinks or not at which point he was crossed the wire and become alcoholic. he will never go back over the wire. All he can hope for is to control it.

    The Ukraine should look at programmes to improve the life prospects of the the young, combined with access to alcohol being more difficult (through price for example).

    Then throw in training awareness of the dangers of alcoholism (it creeps up on you). Plus look at parenting. Some obligatory training may be needed there too.

  • Whilst I agree there is a problem with alcohol and tobacco consumption in Ukraine I think the link between Akhmetov who own a brewery and the problems associated with Alcoholism is based more on political bias then anything else. I would not claim that Akhmetov is promoting the consumption of excessive alcohol by virtue of his ownership of a brewery. No more then the number of politicians who own casinos or gaming venues are encouraging gambling. (Both sides of politics would be at fault as they all have some role or ownership in these industries) The same goes with alcohol and tobacco.

    Yes there is more that can and should be done. Russia for example has just banned the advertising of Tobacco and will soon consider adopting Western practice of baning smoking in public places.

    Whilst alcohol and drug abuse is a problem in Ukraine I think there is a growing awareness of the implication of excessive consumption of alcohol. Many of the young people I meet and talk too do not drink or if they do only on special social occasions (New year birthdays etc.) Women in particular shy away from alcohol.

    Ukrainian youth sadly drink excessive amounts of beer, which they consider to be more like a soft-drink then an alcoholic beverage. Similar to wine.

    Whilst alcohol consumption is a problem I think gambling is even more so. When I first visited Ukraine few people could afford to gamble and the cosmos and gaming venues were empty, just occupying unused space. Now I am noticing more and more Ukrainians trying their luck as the gaming industry begins to turn a profit.

    With rising inflation and cost of property out of reach those that manage to earn more tend to spend it on social activities then savings. Here and now rather then looking towards the future.

    With the increasing availability of credit ad high interest rates, low salaries, high property prices it will not be long before banks need to foreclose on housing loans. In the past they were underpinned by a property boom. A boom which has reached its peak and may very well soon collapse.

    Is Akhmetov to blame for all these problems facing Ukraine? No more so the Yushchenko or any other person in authority or a position of wealth. It is time Ukraie takes collective responsibility to their problems and not pass the buck or place blame in one particlar area or person.

  • Of course, Ukraine is not the only youth alcoholism-stricken country.

    But it is certainly the #1 country according to the World Health Organization study. And much of the disaffection with prospects in life that you mentioned comes from Ukraine’s poverty.

    Last, but definitely not least, we don’t put “the” in front of “Ukraine.”

  • Hi Tara

    Sorry about “the” in front of Ukraine. It must be an old way of saying it. Somehow it was in my head. I’m sure poverty is a major contributor to the alcohol problem. Not every poor country of equal poverty has the same problem so maybe in addition to gradually making the country more prosperous (I hope the politicians are doing their best), perhaps booze if too accessible and/or there in not enough for the young to do to occupy their minds.

    There may be parenting issues as well.

    Freddie

  • Polyglot

    Yes your are right “the” is only used when their is more the one and you are trying to specify that one in particular such as the Crimean peninsula because there is more then one peninsula and you want to nominate the Crimean peninsula as opposed to a peninsula. The use of the article “the” tales up many pages in English grammar books but i think this is a simple explanation their is only one Ukraine but you can say the Ukrainian republic as there is more then one republic.

  • Shawn

    I am a Native American-Indian descent person. I can relate to Ukrainian acholism because our Native communities typically suffer the same problem as rural ukrainian communities. Both Native Americans and Ukrainians have been victum of colonization of a more elite country,(Britain agaist us natives and Russia against the Ukrainians) These colonizations has brought never ending cycles of poverty and drug abuse to both rural populations. So I know what there going through.

  • “For teenagers I think one of the major causes is a disaffection by the young with prospects in life.”

    “I’m sure poverty is a major contributor to the alcohol problem.”

    “Both Native Americans and Ukrainians have been victum of colonization of a more elite country,(Britain agaist us natives and Russia against the Ukrainians)”

    Good grief! Use your brain! You know, that thing between your ears? Alcohol is an addictive drug. That’s all there is to it. When you blame someone or something else for your addiction to a poisonous substance (it is poison because you barf when you have a lot of it – your body saying ‘Why are you poisoning me?’), then you are simply rationalizing or justifying your own continuing use of that drug.

    “Whilst alcohol and drug abuse is a problem in Ukraine I think there is a growing awareness of the implication of excessive consumption of alcohol. Many of the young people I meet and talk too do not drink or if they do only on special social occasions (New year birthdays etc.) Women in particular shy away from alcohol.”

    Hello? What is “excessive use” of an addictive drug? Do you say “excessive consumption of heroin?” Anyone who is drinking a little today while be drinking a lot tomorrow. It is an addiction, which demands steadily increasing doses.

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