Then there's also the social factor that drinking has (I can only speak for American culture here). It's hard to really explain it but it's just what you do. Sharing a beer with my dad once I was old enough to was a pretty cool experience as was doing the same thing with grandpa. Then there's the whole idea of having some beers with friends. It holds a significance in American culture. It's what people do. Probably a terrible way of describing it but there is something there that's engrained into our culture.
Same thing here in Australia.
On the subject of mixed drinks, since many are mentioning them, the idea doesn't appeal to me. A lot of my enjoyment while drinking comes from noting the differences between different brands and styles. I can't imagine that rum and coke would taste any better than just normal coke, but I guess it helps you get drunk if you don't like the taste of alcohol.
It depends on both the quality of the alcohol and the type of alcohol really. For example if you're drinking a good scotch then having it on the rocks is great. If you've got cheap stuff then cutting it with some coke is better. It masks the imperfections of the brand that you're drinking. Most mixers are made with cheap stuff. If i ever saw someone wasting good alcohol by mixing it with soft drink i'd be disappointed. In terms of type, Vodka lends itself to mixers better than a lot of other drinks.
Tastes bad and has negative effects on your body.
Changes your mental state (temporarily), as if it will somehow help you, while it actually harms you in so many ways.
So yeah, of course I was overdoing it, you can debate, but those 3 things are just enough for me to be convinced that it is bad.
1) Taste is highly subjective and there are a ton of good tasting alcoholic drinks.
2) Yeah there are negative effects but there are negative effects from drinking soda. Unless you only drink water then the beverage of your choice has negative effects. Soda = ton of sugar, juice = ton of sugar, energy drinks = ton of sugar etc etc
3) Again the a subjective point re mental state changes. It lowers inhibitions which for some people who are naturally anxious, or worried in a social setting allows them to be more comfortable which is a beneficial effect.
Like with pretty much everything in life, when done in moderation there are no adverse effects of alcohol. I'm not saying there is nothing wrong with alcohol. Far from it, it causes a lot of illness and disease, anti-social & immoral behaviour and there are a lot of people with problems associated from excessive consumption.