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Expert Texpert Choking Smokers

An article on the Everyday Health section of AOL today asserts that moderate drinking may well reduce the chances of an Aortic Aneurysm by a one in five mark for men while over a 2 in 5 rate for women. Moderate drinking there was defined as 10 drinks per week for men and 5 for women.

We're not going to get into the details as they're likely not enthralling and likely also not particularly enlightening. Some competent persons at some accredited institution surely are responsible for these findings. We will trust their sincerity. But can we really trust their findings? They might well be right, and who are we non-scientists unfamiliar with the exactitudes of research to question them?

But they may be wrong. This is not said to besmirch them but only to lead into our main points (you saw that coming, didn't you?). To begin with, why shouldn't alcohol as most things of this world offer certain benefits when used rationally? After that, how often do we hear from experts and how often are we told that we ought to listen to experts only to have them later countered by other experts? Whom do we listen to then?

We will now leave the first point basically alone as it appears to us as obvious as day. Most things used well and proper are okay. About all we care to add is that despite the good there will always be the bad. This is not by any inference to single out alcohol abuse. Yet it is to say that there are times and manners in which alcohol consumption is wrong, even simply in the general sense that alcohol is essentially a poison. But you get the drift. In an imperfect world you will have imperfect things and alcohol is not the least of them. Just be sensible and you should be okay.

It's the expert thing which really bother us. How often do they change their tune? At one time decaffeinated coffee was held as superior to regular. Then there were later stories by other coffee experts saying it was worse. How do we know who's advice is best? You ought to bear in mind that the examples of coffee and alcohol expertise come well before more dramatic forms such as we find in a courtroom. Expert One says the accused is insane; Expert Two says bosh, hang him high. What do you do when in such positions?

The same thing as you do with coffee and alcohol. Look at the data, look at yourself, and be sensible about their use. Listen to each side, talk with someone you trust, and decide as rationally as you can. Don't exclude presumably expert opinion. Just remember they aren't perfect either. And then go ahead and have your 5 or 10 drinks per week and with a couple cups of decafs if you like.

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