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(NBC News)   Washington State's privatization of liquor sales leads to surge in liquor sales...in Oregon   (nbcnews.com) divider line 235
    More: Obvious, Oregon, tri-cities, sales lead, Columbia River, Walla Walla, liquors  
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11447 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Jul 2012 at 5:10 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-19 08:25:37 AM

Itstoearly: GAT_00: violentsalvation: the job they never should have had

Why exactly is it wrong for the state to sell booze?

It's not wrong for the state to sell booze so much as it's wrong for the state to sell booze and make any competition to it's own business illegal. If it was some rich corporation that was buying itself a monopoly you would be crying on Fark so hard your head would explode, but since it's the government, you openly accept it.


I don't see anyone breaking up the companies that do have monopolies or near monopolies. Might as well have one where the revenue from it goes right back to the people. A company that measurably helps people is a nice change of pace.
 
2012-07-19 08:27:23 AM
One of the best liquor stores in Nova Scotia is the privately owned Premium Wine and Spirits in Halifax. It is also surprisingly one of the only places to buy Ironworks rum which is distilled in Nova Scotia. I asked the owners of Ironworks what the deal was and they told me thatthe markup that NSLC imposes is such that it would increase their price to more than people would spend on rum so they only retail it at farmer's markets and private retailers (of which there are maybe 3 in the province).
 
2012-07-19 08:27:49 AM

Dancin_In_Anson: MoeSzyslak: The government is driving paying customers away by taxing the holy hell out of booze now because they no longer have a monopoly on it's profits and your solution is more government involvement?

Sadly that's the answer to everything for many.


As opposed to your answer of the market magically fixes everything. How that is the case has never been explained to any degree of adequacy, but it doesn't stop you from claiming it's the solution to everything, does it?
 
2012-07-19 08:29:14 AM

GAT_00: The money they were making to be used for public works programs had to be replaced. If the people in the state wanted booze to be cheaper, they should have left things as is.

Revenue doesn't magically reappear when you destroy a revenue stream after all, and that money was being used.


Then they should find another tax stream. Just raising the taxes to the point of screwing the consumers and boarder stores is a bit asine.
 
2012-07-19 08:32:13 AM

Cybernetic: Washington State's ridiculous taxes on liquor leads to surge in liquor sales...in Oregon


Thank you! Lawmakers take a 27% cut for doing what they should have been doing all along... GTFO was the message from the people. Those who are crossing the border are giving the big middle finger to the retards in charge.
I purchase my alcohol in California since it's almost half the price of what we are required to pay in Oregon. My wife and I make 1 large purchase a year and save at least 35-40 percent under Oregon prices.
 
2012-07-19 08:32:13 AM

legendary: Who are the idiots that voted for this?


The mistake wasn't for the state to get the hell out of the liquor business (which it has no business being in) but imposing such an idiotic tax.
 
2012-07-19 08:35:38 AM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: MoeSzyslak: Lucky LaRue: So, basically, Washington had been subsidizing its liquor industry?

Pay attention, Red States... You may learn something here about free enterprise...

The government is driving paying customers away by taxing the holy hell out of booze now because they no longer have a monopoly on it's profits and your solution is more government involvement? There was never a subsidy. The government used to get all of the profits and now they only get their tax cut so they raised taxes in a short sighted attempt to make up the entire difference by fleecing the public.

These government geniuses can never seem to understand that raising taxes isn't just a license to print money and when prices go through the roof people aren't just going to continue buying as much and as often as they used to. It's nothing more than a great way to create black markets or just drive business out of their state such as this case.

The additional taxes are supposed to be temporary. Still, it's nice to have a greater selection of liquor to choose from.


LOL, ask anyone from PA about temporary sin taxes on booze.

/hint it's mentioned above you
//it's not too far from the century mark
 
2012-07-19 08:39:28 AM

trotsky: The Ohio model is pretty decent: hard stuff in state stores, watered down stuff in groceries.

I actually don't have a problem with the privatization of the Ohio Liquor monopoly. What I DO have a problem with is how Kasich wanted to sell it off to his cronies and donors. That's my problem. I would rather see it left intact than sold off to the same group of supporters he put in JobsOhio.


Ohio hasn't had state stores for well over a decade! What we do have is state warehouse that is the sole wholesaler to the distribution companies and it means good luck getting anything not in the big book (and even then I've had an open order for a few listed items for the last two years, ended up getting them while on vacation in less stupid states).
 
2012-07-19 08:40:27 AM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: The additional taxes [in Washington] are supposed to be temporary.


I Am The Bishop Of East Anglia: [Pennsylvania] charges 18% on liquor sales to help the survivors of the Johnstown flood from 1936...


That's how temporary taxation tends to work.
 
2012-07-19 08:42:54 AM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: The additional taxes are supposed to be temporary


So was income tax witholding.

Lucky LaRue: So, basically, Washington had been subsidizing its liquor industry?

Pay attention, Red States... You may learn something here about free enterprise...


Before, the state marked up the booze to make revenue.

Now the retailers are doing the same thing except.... [the state] also imposed an additional 10 percent distributor fee and 17 percent retail fee to replace money the state lost when it shut down its state-run liquor stores. The result was higher prices for consumers at many retail outlets.

This isn't about free enterprise, it's about shiat taxes.
 
2012-07-19 08:49:26 AM
What's sad is that Washington State already had almost the highest liquor prices in the country. (I think it was 3rd after AK and HI). This is why many people voted for the initiative. They thought it would lower the prices somewhat.
 
2012-07-19 08:50:41 AM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: The additional taxes are supposed to be temporary. Still, it's nice to have a greater selection of liquor to choose from.


Ahem...
 
2012-07-19 08:53:20 AM
Speaking of liquor stores, I've got to stop by and grab a handles of Jim Beam. Since there on sale for $15 a gallon.

/NH ftw!
 
2012-07-19 08:58:20 AM

DownDaRiver: Pelvic Splanchnic Ganglion:

HAHA! I see what you did there! You changed the "s" in "legislation" with a dollar sign! That's brilliant! No one has ever done that before!

Wow, you're kinda of a dick


Let me guess what kind: a flacid, scab covered kinda dick?
 
2012-07-19 09:02:13 AM

tedthebellhopp: Speaking of liquor stores, I've got to stop by and grab a handles of Jim Beam. Since there on sale for $15 a gallon.

/NH ftw!


There will be cameos from Jim Beam and the Reverend Jack Daniels.
 
2012-07-19 09:03:09 AM
Statewide, liquor sales grew by just 12 percent.

Any growth is good, and 12% ain't bad at all. Would anyone here mind a 12% raise because the company next door made a policy change? And then complain that it's just 12%?

Damn, I'm just getting just one more BJ a week, oh the humanity.
 
2012-07-19 09:04:51 AM

farkityfarker: What's sad is that Washington State already had almost the highest liquor prices in the country. (I think it was 3rd after AK and HI). This is why many people voted for the initiative. They thought it would lower the prices somewhat.


^^^^THIS^^^^

Also, it was supposed to increase the choice of brands & from what I can tell it's DECREASED them. Not to mention stores like Safeway & QFC never seem to have a full shelf. It is the exact opposite from what we were told it would be. However, I'm not going to waste the gas on a 3 hr. trip to Portland to save $5-$10 bucks. It sucks all the way around. :-(
 
2012-07-19 09:07:41 AM
The law replaced the State Stores with another layer of taxation, and the result for almost all liquor sold has been price increases. Merchants have made up for this by selling some very high volume sales alcohols at near wholesale price, in effect loss-leaders. So you occasionally see $5 less than before on really popular stuff, Crown Royal, Smirnoff's, etc.

On all Single Malt Scotch, a $50 bottle from before's pricing is now more in the range of $75 once the new taxes are applied.

Everyone voting in favor of this measure took one "bad," the State Stores, and replaced it with a "Worse," the extra taxes. Costco makes out like a bandit since all they sell is big volume booze. For the rest of us, that don't only drink Crown Royal, our costs for what we always used to buy just went up significantly.

A whole lot of people posting on forums took this as a big chance to hit the 900 or so unionized state store employees, and gave no f--ks about what it did to final retail costs by adding in the extra taxes, if they even noticed the fine print about the extra taxes.

Now as costs retail are more, because of the extra taxes, that most in the public didnt understand would happen, you get the bump in sales in Oregon.

I voted against. Most people I know voted against. But most people I know are literate and educated. And actually read the fine print on something that will bump taxes on a product we buy by 30%.

A whole lot of the public just said "unions bad warrrrr savings wharrrr" and voted in favor, equating ALL "free market" with "better than the damn unions." What we got really isn't that free of a market though. huge tax bump at the wholesale level. We swapped state monopoly for private industry monopoly, with big tax floor built in to all sales regardless.

The "private market competition" can't correct for that. Except very little around the margins, and only if you forget that the store price now doesn't include the tax you pay at checkout.
 
2012-07-19 09:12:11 AM

AbbeySomeone: I saw this coming. Carpool to PDX for booze and smokes, visit a decent strip club, make a day of it. The taxes are ridiculous - 27%. Beer and wine are only 10%.
Oh well, the res has a steady flow of traffic.


That's not including the 7% sales tax, either.
 
2012-07-19 09:12:49 AM

Lucky LaRue: So, basically, Washington had been subsidizing its liquor industry?


No, but Costco subsidized the last election there...
 
2012-07-19 09:13:36 AM

casey17: farkityfarker: What's sad is that Washington State already had almost the highest liquor prices in the country. (I think it was 3rd after AK and HI). This is why many people voted for the initiative. They thought it would lower the prices somewhat.

^^^^THIS^^^^

Also, it was supposed to increase the choice of brands & from what I can tell it's DECREASED them. Not to mention stores like Safeway & QFC never seem to have a full shelf. It is the exact opposite from what we were told it would be. However, I'm not going to waste the gas on a 3 hr. trip to Portland to save $5-$10 bucks. It sucks all the way around. :-(


Thats been my experience as well. The State Stores carried about 300 varieties of Single Malt scotch, as well as a full range of fledgling local distilleries.

Big ass stores like Safeway have a whole bunch of Crown Royal. And because of the wholesale tax increase, as well as the 10,000 foot / inventory requirements in the law, unless you are a big box store with a big variety on hand already .. you won't be carrying many of the niche brands the state stores used to have to carry.

Its a big damn dirty shame how much the public didn't care about the negative impact. They voted to hand Costco a big payday, as well as out of state wholesalers. Small local distilleries are threatened with survival now, and any fan of niche brand alcohol is having to scramble around to figure out where to buy, if they can find their favorite brands at all. Variety is way down at retail, even the newer just-opened stores don't have the same variety. And likely won't, since there's no "private market incentive" for them to. And niche liquor stores cant afford to open because they can't afford to be 10,000 square foot. Beautiful catch-22 Costco and the voters created.
 
2012-07-19 09:15:35 AM
There's legislation being proposed in PA to privatize wine and liquor sales. I have the feeling that if it passes, we'll have the same issue as Washington. Wine does cost more here than in some states, not because of the licensing, but because of the taxes. Privatizing won't do anything to change that. I'd rather buy a bottle of wine in the current stores, where the employees know their wines, than in a grocery store where there isn't anyone you can talk to about wine. If you compare the knowledge of the liquor store employers about wine to the beer distributor employees about beer, there's no competition. The exception is the new Giant Eagle near me that now sells beer. They have people there that really know beer. For someone who likes to try new micro brews, it's great. I was steered to Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter the other day. Not only is it a great beer, but the price was right at $10 for a 6-pack.
 
2012-07-19 09:17:01 AM

YakBoy42: Just wanted to point out that the picture from TFA -

[media.king5.com image 600x337]

Features Ebb & Flow Gin which is distilled less than 2 miles from my house and is the best gin I have ever tasted.

We now return you to your regular Farking


Why no Dry Fly!? Even in stupid stock photos, it always about Seattle all the time in this state!
 
2012-07-19 09:17:18 AM

legendary: Who are the idiots that voted for this?


Washingtonians. It's a red state whose claim to fame is they're Not Oregon. Until you get to Clark County. Then they're Not Portland (even though it's a Portland suburb, and the only one of size with a sales tax), and Not British Columbia (even though they are a Vancouver, they're not the good Vancouver, and they're somehow proud of this).

/Vantucky
 
2012-07-19 09:19:26 AM

Generation_D: Its a big damn dirty shame how much the public didn't care about the negative impact.


Why is it the public's fault the state has draconian taxes on alchohol?

The problem is the taxes, not the privatization or anti-union feeling. Eliminate the taxes and you'll get niche stores and more competition and lower prices.
 
2012-07-19 09:20:44 AM

doglover: sno man: The cool part of the LCBO is how big it is... the variety of wines and for that matter everything else, would likely diminish without it.

False. In Japan, you see no centralization of booze sales. So convenience stores and super markets carry a small selection of wine, liquor, and booze freely.

But what you see is small specialty shops with a variety of selection of special vintages you can't find at the supermarket. You can get anything, and there's still super stocked liquor stores, it's just that there's no need to go out of your way for a bottle of standard plonk anymore.


I'm going to probably look weird for saying this, but I kind of like how Oklahoma's ABLE ensuring convenience stores can only sell 3.2% pretty much ensured there's a liquor store on every major intersection with a decent beer selection and the hard stuff in one convenient place.
 
2012-07-19 09:20:50 AM

I Am The Bishop Of East Anglia: I live in Pennsylvania, where the state runs the liquor stores, and the beer stores have to sell beer by the case, and the state charges 18% on liquor sales to help the survivors of the Johnstown flood from 1936...so I am getting a kick out of these replies.



Those poor people. Will they ever get a break?
 
2012-07-19 09:21:39 AM

MugzyBrown: Generation_D: Its a big damn dirty shame how much the public didn't care about the negative impact.

Why is it the public's fault the state has draconian taxes on alchohol?

The problem is the taxes, not the privatization or anti-union feeling. Eliminate the taxes and you'll get niche stores and more competition and lower prices.


Uh, because the state IS the public. We're one in the same. We voted for the taxes. Pretty much our fault.
 
2012-07-19 09:22:53 AM

MarkEC: There's legislation being proposed in PA to privatize wine and liquor sales. I have the feeling that if it passes, we'll have the same issue as Washington. Wine does cost more here than in some states, not because of the licensing, but because of the taxes. Privatizing won't do anything to change that. I'd rather buy a bottle of wine in the current stores, where the employees know their wines, than in a grocery store where there isn't anyone you can talk to about wine. If you compare the knowledge of the liquor store employers about wine to the beer distributor employees about beer, there's no competition. The exception is the new Giant Eagle near me that now sells beer. They have people there that really know beer. For someone who likes to try new micro brews, it's great. I was steered to Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter the other day. Not only is it a great beer, but the price was right at $10 for a 6-pack.


Why would you have to buy wine at the supermarket? If the PCRB was gone, then you could get awesome wine stores like a few in Jersey that have rows and rows of great wine. I got the PCRB store looking for some Argentinean wine, I'm lucky if there are 3 to choose from. At Total Wine & More or Hops & Grapes there are 20+ cheaper than I can get in Argentina.
 
2012-07-19 09:23:05 AM

Noah_Tall: Ummmmm.... Last week I picked up a bottle of Grey Goose for about $5 less than I'm used to paying in liquor stores. And the "HUGE" extra taxes and fees came to $3.


That's about the only thing cheaper. One cannot get hammered on vodka alone. Unless you're looking to become friends with Bill W.

The old liquor stores are still in business only their prices are lower. AND (this is an important one) they are (a really important one) open on Sundays.

A lot of them (importantly, the state-owned ones) closed.
 
2012-07-19 09:23:13 AM

ontariolightning: Ontarioans wish the province didn't own the liquor stores so they could buy liquor in grocery stores and convenience stores.


Maybe wine and beer, but not hard liquor.
 
2012-07-19 09:24:17 AM

rohar: Uh, because the state IS the public. We're one in the same. We voted for the taxes. Pretty much our fault


But why was that the only option? Either state owned or state farked?
 
2012-07-19 09:24:29 AM

mr_a: So somebody buys a $20 2-liter bottle of Vodka, then gets to the checkout and gets hit with another $11 in tax. Of course the customer (who never bothered to read what he was voting for) takes it out on the clerk.


It's a bummer voter registration isn't contingent on successful completion of a reading comprehension quiz.
 
2012-07-19 09:26:59 AM

legendary: Who are the idiots that voted for this?


Republican alcoholics.
 
2012-07-19 09:28:15 AM

meat0918: Well, hopefully the windfall helps out Oregon a bit.


It's going to take a lot more than a few boozers to help out when Oregon's got a long history of letting companies like Intel and Facebook stay without paying into the public commons.
 
2012-07-19 09:28:25 AM

sycraft:
Even more so in Arizona. Grocers can sell any and all booze they wish, and most have a large selection from cheap shiat to nicer shiat, all kinds of hard liquor and beer and wine. However for all that there are specialty liquor stores that have a greater selection. They usually cater to particular kinds so you go to a place that carries the type of stuff you are interested in.


Being a native here, this never really clicked as a "big deal". My wife's family all hails from TN, where you can only buy wine at liquor stores (luckily they don't have to be state run). They were shocked the first time out here when you could get anything and everything at Walmart, Target, grocery stores, walgreens, etc. Hell, you can get free samples of tequila occasionally at Costco for chrisakes. And, I think there are only like 4 hours in a day in which you are unable to buy alcohol (2A-6A).
 
2012-07-19 09:30:14 AM

sycraft: Don't believe the hype from liquor lobbies when they pull the "Oh only if there is high central control can you get good stuff."


It was the liquor lobby that was saying exactly the opposite in Washington. Combined with "it'd be cheaper."
 
2012-07-19 09:30:50 AM
Was up there recently before this change and couldn't believe the prices, can't imagine how high they are now.
Kansas has some stupid liquor laws but at least it's just an 8% sales tax on alcohol
 
2012-07-19 09:31:42 AM

Cybernetic: Washington State's privatization of liquor sales ridiculous taxes on liquor leads to surge in liquor sales...in Oregon


You don't get to reframe how private industry sold it after the fact.
 
2012-07-19 09:32:12 AM

MugzyBrown: rohar: Uh, because the state IS the public. We're one in the same. We voted for the taxes. Pretty much our fault

But why was that the only option? Either state owned or state farked?


The initiative process in WA is completely retarded.

Some special interest group says to themselves "Hey, I've got a really shiatty idea!" then the ball starts rolling. But their shiatty little idea has no chance in hell unless people vote for it. In come the focus groups. WA is heavily red east of the Cascades, pretty blue for much west of the Cascades (big generalization, I know, but bear with me). So you gotta appease both types. So, to get the democrats on board for an initiative that only the republicans will support, you gotta give them something. Taxes and benefits it is. You just stick it on there like a rubber stamp, muddle the wording of the initiative a bit and BINGO successful initiative. We call it compromise. Probably why our state is so compromised.
 
2012-07-19 09:32:33 AM

Baloo Uriza: Cybernetic: Washington State's privatization of liquor sales ridiculous taxes on liquor leads to surge in liquor sales...in Oregon

You don't get to reframe how private industry sold it after the fact.


Retroactively
 
2012-07-19 09:32:34 AM

GAT_00: Satanic_Hamster: The measure allows large retailers like grocery stores and Costco to sell liquor, but it also imposed an additional 10 percent distributor fee and 17 percent retail fee to replace money the state lost when it shut down its state-run liquor stores.

Screw you, state. Not even a liquor drinker but that's bull.

The money they were making to be used for public works programs had to be replaced. If the people in the state wanted booze to be cheaper, they should have left things as is.

Revenue doesn't magically reappear when you destroy a revenue stream after all, and that money was being used.


Or, you know, they could actually make enough cuts to handle the loss in revenue. I bet anything that their revenue actually increases dramatically from these outrageous taxes, because government cannot run anything efficiently. They cannot point out a loss in revenue without also pointing out a reduction in spending (due to fewer employees, bills, maintenance of buildings, etc.).
 
2012-07-19 09:32:36 AM

Noah_Tall: Ummmmm.... Last week I picked up a bottle of Grey Goose for about $5 less than I'm used to paying in liquor stores. And the "HUGE" extra taxes and fees came to $3.

The old liquor stores are still in business only their prices are lower. AND (this is an important one) they are (a really important one) open on Sundays.


3/.27 = $11.11

$11.11 for a bottle of Grey Goose? What was it one of those airplane bottles? Or are you one of those right-wing shills who probably doesn't even live anywhere near Washington, making up a bullshiat story for the sake of "free market" hurr durr!!!

/pics of receipt or you're full of rethuglican shiat
 
2012-07-19 09:33:48 AM

viscountalpha: Hopefully oregon doesn't decide to pull the same stunt here.


/I don't drink

//sucks to be those addicted to alcohol :/


Sucks more that smoking pot and drinking are the only things to do in Oregon on an Oregonian's income. It's like the tech industry's version of West Virginia.
 
2012-07-19 09:36:22 AM
Quitcherbiatchin'. I live in a dry county. 30 miles to Thayer, MO, to buy their overpriced adult beverages because they have the only game in town. 60 miles to closest town (West Plains, MO) where there is competition and, therefore, somewhat lower prices.
 
2012-07-19 09:38:08 AM

Deathfrogg: legendary: Who are the idiots that voted for this?

Republican alcoholics.


Washingtonians, Republican alcoholics, honestly, what's the difference?
 
2012-07-19 09:39:33 AM
"If you've been successful, you didn't get there on your own. You didn't get there on your own. I am always struck by people who think, "It must be because I was just so smart." There are a lot of smart people out there. "It must be because I worked harder than everybody else." Let me tell you something: There are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. If you are successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you did not build that-somebody else made that happen."

Barack Obama, Roanoke, VA, 7/13/2012
 
2012-07-19 09:39:53 AM

one small post for man: Was up there recently before this change and couldn't believe the prices, can't imagine how high they are now.
Kansas has some stupid liquor laws but at least it's just an 8% sales tax on alcohol


On the other hand, it's often worth the trip up US 75 to Kansas to get some decent beer without chancing it having gone bad on the liquor store shelf, since Oklahoma doesn't allow the liquor stores to store beer cold (even though beer is perishable...).
 
2012-07-19 09:41:46 AM

Baloo Uriza: sycraft: Don't believe the hype from liquor lobbies when they pull the "Oh only if there is high central control can you get good stuff."

It was the liquor lobby that was saying exactly the opposite in Washington. Combined with "it'd be cheaper."


Don't believe blithering public internet posters who equate ALL privatization with "optimal for the consumer" privatization. Lots of overlap.

But do by all means keep hating "high central control." If thats what you need to feel important.

Will you be paying the $50 to $100 in extra taxes that 1183 added to my bi-monthly liquor bill?

No? Then you and everyone else who fell for Costco's spin are an a--hole.
 
2012-07-19 09:42:36 AM

legendary: Who are the idiots that voted for this?


The Religious.

You know, the ones who believe, despite all evidence to the contrary, things like:

"The Free Market always produces the Best Result"

and

"The Government cannot do anything well"

and

"Anything the Government does, Private Enterprise can do better"

Regardless of how things actually work.

You know, the Religious.
 
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