The central point The Stranger seems to miss is this: You don’t get good public policy by passing bad public policy. Initiatives I-1100 and I-1105 are bad public policy.
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I just put my ballot in the mail, voted yes on 1100, no on 1105. Why the hell isn't postage free on ballots? I have stamps sitting around, but it might prevent some people from voting just because it isn't as convenient as it could be.
You're a rent-seeker, and that's your right, but we shouldn't be convinced that you protecting your own interests is free. It has a cost: all beer brewers, you included, have less incentive to cut prices when competition is weaker.
Here's how things will hopefully work: QFC either won't stop selling your local brew because it has many fans and makes QFC money, or they will stop selling it and Safeway will stand up to take those profits instead.
How are volume discounts and pay-for-placement *not* competition? Does that mean we don't have competition for everything else that grocery stores sell? And how could a few large stores "monopolize liquor sales" more than what we have now?
This is some of the most Orwellian nonsense I've ever read. State run monopolies are competition! Letting producers, stores, and consumers interact in a marketplace kills competition! Up is down, freedom is slavery!
Thankfully where I live, i don't have to make a separate trip to a liquor store, I might not feel like going outta my twice in one evening.
Most of them were way under 30.
This argument is ultimately that consumers will suffer, but all of my experience living in San Francisco, is that consumers don't suffer from open liqueur laws. Here is SF we can go to Safeway to grab a bottle of big business Vodka for $20 if we want, we can also go to BevMo to find some small batch organic vodka made in Iowa for often comparable prices. We drink cheap big box beer and we go places like this >> http://www.yelp.com/biz/21st-amendment-b…, this >> http://www.yelp.com/biz/toronado-san-fra…, this >> http://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=Mon…, this >> http://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=Mon…, and this >> http://www.yelp.com/biz/healthy-spirits-… to find more cool hand-made, local, international, and creatively brewed beers than stupid SF hipster can shake a wii remote at.
Consumers won't suffer if you pass I-1100, and the small breweries won't suffer either. SF endorses I-1100. I want to visit Seattle soon. And I want to get drunk when I get there. Do it for me!
You don't get a good public policy option when the people threatened by the less than perfect option are writing articles like this rather than better legislation.
Yeah, my business eats shit thanks to mega-corps too. Cry me a river.
I want cheap liquor options everywhere and the current laws are absurd.
Get ready to shutter your business and look for work, I guess.
As for Oakland, I hella concur. It was a fluke (what Mexican restaurant is closed on a Sunday?) I was in the neighborhood, but the place was great.
I simply don't care about beer and wine. Beer and wine is in the grocery store. Vodka, rum, whiskey and flavored stuff is at the liquor store. I want liquor at the grocery store. There is simply no reason why beer and vodka shouldn't be on the same shelves and sold at the same hours.
Also, any craft brewer who can't see how this will expand their market for higher margins deserves to go out of business. Specialty stores don't stock PBR. They sell craft beers at high margins. With liquor in the mix, at high margins, there will be more specialty stores selling to customers who are willing to pay a premium for quality products. A craft brewer is not in competition with PBR. Duh.
Deregulation has worked so well in the financial and insurance industries, hell let's deregulate the utility business, what would you say to your gas and electric company being able to charge you whatever the market will bare? You are probably an intellectual person and may even be an educator, but with your rationale we will all be greeters at Wal Mart stores someday as the corporations take over America and excercise their version of economics (no full time labor, half our employees on food stamps, no health care), because after all where else is anyone going to work after they drive everyone from the market.
And I see this arg reappearing in the same articulation that small breweries will go under, but you're ignoring the empirical evidence on display in the many places where you can buy liquor in grocery stores and still find artisan beer. You're all being ridiculous.
And for the record if you need Utah/Soviet style liquor laws to keep local producers in your bars and markets than you all need to seriously work on yourselves. You must not know shit about being hipster, left-wing elitist douche bags! Come on down to SF, we'll take you out and put on a seminar on self-righteous community organizing. Before lunch: "Using Yelp as a Weapon" and "How to Tweet a Protest Bar Crawl."
Our laws aren't great, but their not anything like Utah and if these measures hadn't been written to return the regulation to pre-prohibition organized crime like regulations then I could probably get behind them.
By the way, California is broke, so if you can use Yelp to stir up some new revenue I am sure the Governator would appreciate it, maybe the legal weed is the answer. Aren't Hipsters a joke yet in California, we just laugh at them up here.
Like I said, I'm not commenting on the wisdom of eliminating state revenue. I am commenting on the fallacy of the opinion (not fact as presented in the article) that eliminating state control will hurt craft brewers.
Also, as an aside the financial industry. Their downfall was based on a single flawed assumption: Property values never decrease. Once assumption failed it all went down. From what I recall from the literature on the problem was that the financial companies them based their revenue on a risk equation that was based on a students term paper...oops.
The financial collapse was largely due to regulations for determining credit worthiness being loosened up, leading to the sub-prime collapse and the unregulated derivitives market that bet on mortgages being sound investments.
The cheaper liquor is, the more people die from it. It's that simple. Countless studies over the years in many different countries have calculated the rate, too. A 10% decrease in cost leads to about a 5% increase in alcohol-related fatalities.
But hey, domestic violence, drunk driving, and people drinking themselves to death (something vastly easier to do on cheap spirits than cheap beer) is a small cost for your convenience and saving a little money.
Totally agree, but when you have a chicken shit legislature that refused to act in rational, evolutionary ways, you end up with the citizens taking the matter into their own hands. Looking for someone to blame? Look no further than Olympia on this one.
Oh please, California could buy your state with a bond measure!
While the Three-Tier System could use some reform, simply throwing it out entirely does not make sense to consumers. And throwing it out entirely is what I-1100 does.
The Three-Tier System consists of manufacturers (brewers/importers), distributors (in Washington state, breweries/wineries can become licensed to self-distribute), and licensed retailers (brewpubs/stores).
I've heard many say, "Who cares about this system? Let's get that middle-man (distributor) out of the equation so my beer/wine/spirits will be cheaper."
But the removal of this middleman is not likely to happen, even if I-1100 passes. Many manufacturers just don't have the logistical manpower to take on the level of distribution that these businesses provide. What you will see is more middlemen pop up, including Costco B2B centers acting as middleman.
Should I-1100 pass, liquor/spirits prices will likely decrease, but your wine/beer prices are likely to increase.
Under the Three-Tier System, all beer/wine deliveries to retailers are C.O.D. Yes, that's cash/check on delivery. This also allows importers/distributors to keep their prices low for retailers as they incur absolutely ZERO merchant fees from credit card companies on the products they sell. Without these added fees at levels 1 & 2 of the Three-Tier System, your beer/wine prices are able to remain low.
What Costco has been striving for in previous court battles, and now with I-1100, is to be allowed to buy beer/wine on credit. Though their business model is largely credit-based, with quick-turn products, certainly they must have cash available to buy beer/wine. They do. But they want things their way.
And they've got a winner with I-1100. It pulls on the heart/purse-strings of hard liquor drinkers promising lower prices, greater variety, greater convenience.
But at a price.
...at a price to beer and wine consumers who will be footing higher bills to pay for merchant fees incurred as the C.O.D. requirement of the Three-Tier System is removed.
Want to learn more about the Three-Tier System? BellaOnline has a nice overview of why it was established at http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art5…
People like good beer. They seek it out. If their grocery stops selling it, they'll start shopping somewhere else. Make good beer, and you won't have a problem.
Also, you'd make a more believable argument if you stayed away from Chicken-Little statements like, "This could kill my business." That's quite an eye-roller.