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(SeattlePI)   Washington state privatized the sale of hard liquor last year, believing it would drive prices down. Take a wild frickin' guess what happened. Who knew people like booze and money, and getting more money off of deregulated booze?   (seattlepi.com) divider line 142
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12064 clicks; posted to Main » on 01 Jan 2013 at 4:11 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-01 11:49:47 AM
Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2013-01-01 11:51:34 AM
Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?
 
2013-01-01 12:23:34 PM
Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.
 
2013-01-01 12:27:54 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.


I thought competition always drove down prices.
 
2013-01-01 12:28:30 PM

Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.


Costco competing with whom?
 
2013-01-01 12:43:59 PM

LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.


Yeah, this.  Take the taxes off, and it is indeed less expensive.  Unfortunately, they will NEVER let that happen - the Statehouse knows people aren't going to stop buying booze.  This is a cash cow for them.
 
2013-01-01 12:48:02 PM
Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.
 
2013-01-01 01:07:52 PM
Give it time.  The prices will come down as competition heats up... or not... depending on how difficult Washington state makes it to obtain a permit to sell packaged goods.
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2013-01-01 02:18:24 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.


So higher cost products is a good thing?

YAAAAA privatization!!!
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2013-01-01 02:27:01 PM

Benevolent Misanthrope: LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.

Yeah, this.  Take the taxes off, and it is indeed less expensive.  Unfortunately, they will NEVER let that happen - the Statehouse knows people aren't going to stop buying booze.  This is a cash cow for them


FTA- "The state's 51.9 percent mark-up went away but was replaced by fees of 10 percent on distributors and 17 percent on retailers."

51.9 - (10+17) + 10 increase = 14.9% privatization fee
 
2013-01-01 03:56:31 PM

NFA: Benevolent Misanthrope: LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.

Yeah, this.  Take the taxes off, and it is indeed less expensive.  Unfortunately, they will NEVER let that happen - the Statehouse knows people aren't going to stop buying booze.  This is a cash cow for them

FTA- "The state's 51.9 percent mark-up went away but was replaced by fees of 10 percent on distributors and 17 percent on retailers."

51.9 - (10+17) + 10 increase = 14.9% privatization fee


Not getting your point?  Serious question, not snark.  It seems like there was a 51.9% markup, and now there's only a 27% markup?
 
2013-01-01 04:17:18 PM
You know what subby? I'll pay more for my booze, knowing the government isn't wasting money on the upkeep the stores and the land cost, and using it as an excuse to overpay basic retail and offer pensions to push a few buttons and take my money for lotto tickets. gfy.

Also true to form though, they still get all that tax money, plus what they now save not owning the stores or paying those employees...and we still need to raise taxes. So we got that going for us.
 
2013-01-01 04:17:43 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.


Heh. Good point.
 
2013-01-01 04:18:30 PM
the prices might be higher because the types of liquor being sold now is of a higher quality than what was sold before.  privatization may be responding to a market demand for more higher quality (and thus more expensive) liquor.
 
2013-01-01 04:19:06 PM

LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.


How was their monopoly illegal?
 
2013-01-01 04:19:18 PM

Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.


Unless there is collusion.

And yeah, in the long run prices with drop.
 
2013-01-01 04:19:29 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.

Costco competing with whom?


BJ's?
 
2013-01-01 04:19:30 PM
I figured it wouldn't lower prices, but it certainly didn't add that much convenience. To get a pint or mini bottles you still have to schlep out to the private retailers who took over old state store locations. Sure, if you want a fifth or a handle of widely-available spirits Safeway has you covered, but at a price. Add to this the almost 1/3 higher price due to tax and big-store mark-ups and you have little to show for it.
 
2013-01-01 04:19:51 PM
I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.

Was this link greened so people could have a political fight over pet issues?
 
2013-01-01 04:19:53 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.

Costco competing with whom?


Not defending either one of you, but Costco competes with Sam's and BJ's. Even if you don't have but one of the three locally, they are still in a national competition.
 
2013-01-01 04:20:14 PM

downstairs: NFA: Benevolent Misanthrope: LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.

Yeah, this.  Take the taxes off, and it is indeed less expensive.  Unfortunately, they will NEVER let that happen - the Statehouse knows people aren't going to stop buying booze.  This is a cash cow for them

FTA- "The state's 51.9 percent mark-up went away but was replaced by fees of 10 percent on distributors and 17 percent on retailers."

51.9 - (10+17) + 10 increase = 14.9% privatization fee

Not getting your point?  Serious question, not snark.  It seems like there was a 51.9% markup, and now there's only a 27% markup?


Even a dirt cheap retailer like Wal-Mart operates on a roughly 25% gross markup (that has to pay the rent, employees, etc).  It's likely the state was making around 27% on their 51.9% markup.
 
2013-01-01 04:20:25 PM

douchebag/hater: Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.

Unless there is collusion.

And yeah, in the long run prices with drop.


Plus it may be that the State's prices were artificially low and they have now reached equilibrium.
 
2013-01-01 04:20:45 PM
Well...now they've got wholesalers now, with their markup. And then the retailers have their markup. Taxes paid at each level. So really, there won't be much of a difference to the consumer. The retail experience might get better with selection. Quantity discounts will be made with large retailers, small retailers will be stuck without these discounts and will buy single cases instead of a whole pallet.
 
2013-01-01 04:21:12 PM

vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?


They fixed the cable?
 
2013-01-01 04:22:11 PM
It was clear that the prices were going to stay the same or go up. We passed the law to get the state out of the business of selling liquor, but the only way it could pass was to keep all the state revenue that the old system had. One visit to the Total Wine that recently opened makes me happy with my vote. A shop like that simply couldn't exist under the old laws.
 
2013-01-01 04:23:02 PM

vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?


No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.
 
2013-01-01 04:24:18 PM
The price per liter went up, but that doesn't say anything. If you're comapring a liter of Jack to a liter of Blanton's of course the price per liter went up.

/bad methodology is bad.
 
2013-01-01 04:24:55 PM
Costs will also be higher initially as lots of people start selling booze that didn't before. They'll have to buy licenses, which they'll roll into the price. Plus the cost of setting up distribution routes, etc. Once all that stuff is ironed out and routine, the fixed costs should drop and those savings should be passed on.
 
2013-01-01 04:25:17 PM
 
2013-01-01 04:25:58 PM
Don't forget retail sales tax as well:

http://liq.wa.gov/stores/liquor-pricing

When the states ran the store they didn't collect sales tax and now they do. This is hardly a equal comparison. If you were to remove the additional taxes the price would in fact be below the price before privatization.
 
2013-01-01 04:27:25 PM
I don't see anything about deregulation in that article. It was privatized not deregulated. Deregulation would mean that anybody can buy and sell a product. This is not the case in Washington state.
 
2013-01-01 04:28:12 PM
Liquor is a luxury item, not a necessity. Deal with it.
 
2013-01-01 04:29:15 PM
The government always insures that things like this are at least revenue-neutral.

That said, it's amusing seeing all the cars heading across the border to Oregon during/after the holidays. Tax-free shopping! Too bad there's no way for Oregon to fleece those Washington shoppers.
 
2013-01-01 04:30:06 PM

smonter: Don't forget retail sales tax as well:

http://liq.wa.gov/stores/liquor-pricing

When the states ran the store they didn't collect sales tax and now they do. This is hardly a equal comparison. If you were to remove the additional taxes the price would in fact be below the price before privatization.


Shhh, you'll confuse the dumb masses with facts.
 
2013-01-01 04:30:53 PM

mediablitz: vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?

No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.


In the case of selling something with inelastic demand like booze or gasoline, yeah privatization is pretty much going to get you better results, unless the government piles on taxes and regulations and such. There are different levels of privatization. IIRC this particular bill really favors the big box stores over smaller ones.
 
2013-01-01 04:31:13 PM
Being a monopoly bulk buyer, they could buy cheaper and sell cheaper. Not only market wide, but across brands.

Inefficiency in the private markets drives prices higher; as sellers look to sell at top dollar, buyers bottom dollar, and you have to deal with all the middlemen and smaller operations. That's really good for the economy, but not directly better for a consumers bottom line. Top line though, as long as the new distrbutures stay inefficient, creating jobs and wealth.

Free Market Liquor in MA is more expensive than government monopoly liquor in Live Free or Die NH. The residents of NH aren't looking to privatize it anytime soon, because it's cheaper for them, raises revenue, and is sort a tourism industry to lure people over the border.
 
2013-01-01 04:31:36 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.


Exactly this. This point was stressed during the initiative process. You got the convenience of more locations and hours to purchase in exchange for the price increasing.

/just happy that I get to buy my booze at the NEX in Everett
//their prices are dirt cheap
 
2013-01-01 04:34:31 PM

Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.


Yeah, that's why gas is so cheap and affordable.

The only reason I ever heard from folks was they wanted purchasing to be easier. I didn't hear anyone saying they thought it would be tons cheaper.
 
2013-01-01 04:35:09 PM
The prices are fine, it's the taxes that are out of control. Either way, the convenience of being able to get giant bottles from Costco while I'm shopping for other stuff or just grabbing something from QFC when I'm grocery shopping or at any time I want since they're 24/7 is much preferred compared to the limited hours and limited selection of the state run liquor stores. I'm much happier with it being privatized.
 
2013-01-01 04:36:08 PM

Nabb1: Liquor is a luxury item, not a necessity. Deal with it.


No kidding. You can really tell when the poor white trash in Washington hates something....they will flood the newspapers with butt hurt.

ZOMG I have to pay an extra $3 for rot gut? How will I survive?
 
2013-01-01 04:36:41 PM

Lord Dimwit: LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.

How was their monopoly illegal?


I was wondering the same thing. It would only be illegal if the state said it was illegal statutorily and clearly they didn't do that.

Arguing the public policy of the state retaining an exclusive right to deal in liquor is a different thing.
 
2013-01-01 04:39:09 PM

cuzsis: Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.

Yeah, that's why gas is so cheap and affordable.

The only reason I ever heard from folks was they wanted purchasing to be easier. I didn't hear anyone saying they thought it would be tons cheaper.


Wait, now there's a state run monopoly on gas?
 
2013-01-01 04:39:54 PM
The y are considering this same bullshiat in PA...here is the issue...the PA Liquor Control Board is the single largest purchaser from every major distiller and winery...they buy in volumes no wholesaler or retailer could come close to, so, obviously, they should get the best prices. I do not claim or think that we should, therefor, have the lowest liquor prices in the country(significantly lower prices would lead towards significantly higher health issues, for instance), but we should, at the very least, have prices comparable to, and competitive with, every surrounding state's, while collecting more in taxes and such, WITHOUT hurting the end consumer. The biggest issue to me, as an end consumer, is that there is NO discounting to the restaurant and bar industry other than not paying the base sales tax (6% statewide, 7% in certain cities)...which makes liquor MORE expensive in our restaurants and bars...
One would think that, properly run, the PA LCB could be a cash cow for the state economy, WHILE being competitive pricewise with the surrounding states. Somehow, this is not happening...THAT is what needs to be fixed...and not fixed by giving a huge gift to certain croneys of the Governor.
 
2013-01-01 04:41:17 PM
Lived in IA when it was deregulated. Rather than rare, state-run liquor stores, we could buy vodak at 2am in a grocery store, between the bar and the after-party.


That is the upside.
 
2013-01-01 04:41:22 PM

shintochick: Exactly this. This point was stressed during the initiative process. You got the convenience of more locations and hours to purchase in exchange for the price increasing.


Yep. There wasn't a liquor store in my neighborhood, so I normally had to drive north a few miles to Northgate. Now I can walk out of my house in my pajamas one measly block over to the QFC.

I can sort of understand some ire if you're a real aficionado for certain spirits since the grocery and drug stores usually don't have a HUGE selection, but otherwise I gladly play a few more bucks for the shameless convenience.
 
2013-01-01 04:41:30 PM

NFA: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

So higher cost products is a good thing?

YAAAAA privatization!!!


It's a good thing when us non-alcoholics don't have to serve those raging boozers any more...

disclaimer: Drank beer until the Gout hit. But, take that, you drunks

The price will go down when the state taxes die off. (ya didn't think they'd lose that money easily, did ya?)
 
2013-01-01 04:42:47 PM
So farking what? (FARK SACRILEGE ALERT) Alcohol is a want, not a need. (/FARK SACRILEGE ALERT)
 
2013-01-01 04:45:19 PM

vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?


I guess you were not alive when we only had one phone company and the airlines were regulated.
 
2013-01-01 04:45:29 PM

TorqueToad: I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.


And yet here you are, commenting in a thread about exactly that topic.  Weird, isn't it?
 
2013-01-01 04:55:35 PM

mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.


I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?
 
2013-01-01 05:00:21 PM

Killer Cars: Yep. There wasn't a liquor store in my neighborhood, so I normally had to drive north a few miles to Northgate. Now I can walk out of my house in my pajamas one measly block over to the QFC.



People in Seattle do that too? I thought you guys were classier than the hicks up here that shopped in their pajamas.
 
2013-01-01 05:02:05 PM
Washington state resident here.  The new law was a bogus pile of crap, derped on by "free market" zealots and Coscto marketing.  The state packed the new law with more taxes then said sure, guys, we'll be happy to close our state stores.

My $50 bottles of scotch turned into $75 bottles of scotch overnight.

Everyone in the liquor industry that had studied the new law predicted this, but the idiot public that bought into Cosco's lies defended the new law, always with "less government lower taxes" mantra, without ACTUALLY STUDYING THE NEW LAW.

Results:  Less revenue because taxes are now 25% higher or so, there's another layer of taxes (Wholesale) and yes, we get private stores.  WOOP.   They can't lower prices because they are passing along all the taxes.  Costs are locked in being higher unless taxes are lowered.  And taxes won't be lowered because guess what, we already spent the revenue.  And the majority will never support lowering taxes on liquor, even though we pay the highest liquor tax in the country, by far.  We already paid the highest under the old state stores, but they managed to get it approved to even be higher now, because DUMBASS PUBLIC ASSWIT VOTERS FELL FOR IT believing the lies about the "private free market" would always be lower regardless of the rules.

I was in favor of Initiative 1100, but against 1183.  1183 was the one that made it.  Costco bought the right to sell crappy liquor in bulk, and every one of you that voted for it is an idiot that drove up my booze cost for premium scotch as a result.
 
2013-01-01 05:05:13 PM

Mikeyworld: NFA: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

So higher cost products is a good thing?

YAAAAA privatization!!!

It's a good thing when us non-alcoholics don't have to serve those raging boozers any more...

disclaimer: Drank beer until the Gout hit. But, take that, you drunks

The price will go down when the state taxes die off. (ya didn't think they'd lose that money easily, did ya?)


Hey, be sure and let me know what type of recreational activity you are into, so I can organize an initiative to jack up the taxes on it, and get a majority to vote in favor of it making promises.  I guarantee you whether its public parks or roads needing repaired, or bicycle lanes to build or stadiums or something, you use public resources unequal to your current paying into the system, but your smug attitude was part of jacking up taxes on alcohol.

I wonder if you smoke pot.  Can't wait til they start taxing you on that.
 
2013-01-01 05:05:47 PM
Subs? Here in Illinois the sale of booze is in the hands of private retailers and we have cheaper booze than Washington, had cheaper booze when it was the state of Washington selling it.
 
2013-01-01 05:06:42 PM
NFA:

FTA- "The state's 51.9 percent mark-up went away but was replaced by fees of 10 percent on distributors and 17 percent on retailers."

51.9 - (10+17) + 10 increase = 14.9% privatization fee



Well, no. Not quite. The State taxes the distributor 10% which raises the cost to the retailer 1.1 times the supplier cost. Then the state taxes the retailer 17%, or 1.17 times 1.1 times the supplier cost (= 1.287 times the supplier cost). A 28.7% tax may not seem like much, but for the costs to remain the same as in the state run liquor stores, this leaves a margin of only 23.2% for the retailer, which ain't much after overhead. The retailer still has to pay salaries, rent, utilities, Federal taxes, etc.

And since most retailers can not buy in the same quantities as the State did, they do not get the same discounts from the suppliers, which pairs that margin thinner still. I seem to recall that PA liquor stores (state run) used to get a 13% discount over what was available to private liquor stores in NY an MA, so say an additional 10% in WA, raises the differential to 1.1 times 1.287 or 1.4157 (as the price increase gets taxed at each level), which leaves a 10.3% margin for the retailer.

So yeah, under this tax scheme where the tax rate is greater than the retailer's margin, prices are going to go up.
 
2013-01-01 05:07:32 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody


Total bullsh*t.  "It'll lower the price" was a major selling point of the promotion of this new law.  Many people believed it would, and voted for it, despite the evidence to the contrary.

There were two main justifications for the law I saw: 1) money for schools, cops and firefighters, and 2) HERP DERP CLOSE THE STATE STORES WE HATE UNION WORKERS stuff.

As a result, I got tagged with 22% - 30% more in taxes on alcohol.  As did everyone else that buys any liquor in the state.
 
2013-01-01 05:19:27 PM
Another Washington resident here. The worst part about the privatization is the limited selection.

The distributors want to stock as few SKUs as possible because the more SKUs they carry, the higher their costs. In the distributors' perfect world they each carry only one whiskey, one rum, one vodak.

The reason for the higher prices is obvious - Now you've got private distributors and retailers that are trying to squeeze money from the consumer on top of the State's cut. What the less-Government zealots who were in favor of I-1183 don't get is that the State was, at least, trying to run their liquor business in a fair way. The State really wasn't screwing us on liquor, but the private companies want to extract as much money from the consumer as they can.

And soon they will start blaming the State's taxes for the high cost and the people, with their short-term memories, will rise up and say, "Yeah, it's all the State's fault!" forgetting that liquor was cheaper before privatization.

But hey, at least I can buy liquor at 1AM on a Sunday!
 
2013-01-01 05:23:18 PM
I wonder if prices will fall once the taxes are phased out or if we will be so used to paying the higher price that retailers will keep them the same. Granted, the grocery business has razor-thin margins and stiff competition, but still
 
2013-01-01 05:23:55 PM

Cranialsodomy: Another Washington resident here. The worst part about the privatization is the limited selection.

The distributors want to stock as few SKUs as possible because the more SKUs they carry, the higher their costs. In the distributors' perfect world they each carry only one whiskey, one rum, one vodak.


I guess I'll trust your personal experience, because I'm not from Washington.

But I've never been to a store that didn't have a decent enough selection of liquor.  From my small corner store, to Wal Mart, to CostCo.

They all carry low-end to high-end brands in the major categories.
 
2013-01-01 05:25:16 PM

BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?


Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".
 
2013-01-01 05:25:22 PM

Cranialsodomy: Another Washington resident here. The worst part about the privatization is the limited selection.


You're not going to the right stores. The new Total Wine that opened recently here has a better liquor selection than I'd seen at any of the old liquor stores. The spirits from the local micro-distillery that were impossible to find in the old stores are for sale at a huge number of outlets now.
 
2013-01-01 05:26:48 PM
American living in BC, Canada here-- in BC they have both privatized and BC government operated stores-- the BC Gov't stores are generally significantly cheaper. However they are less numerous, so private ones might be more convenient. However, EVERYTHING costs roughly double ore more what it does in WA. Average beers are around $14-$17 a 6-pack. Rare to see a cheap bottle of wine for less than $11. So, whatever, WA looks pretty damn good ot me from here!
 
2013-01-01 05:30:11 PM

MrPeepersVT: American living in BC, Canada here-- in BC they have both privatized and BC government operated stores-- the BC Gov't stores are generally significantly cheaper. However they are less numerous, so private ones might be more convenient. However, EVERYTHING costs roughly double ore more what it does in WA. Average beers are around $14-$17 a 6-pack. Rare to see a cheap bottle of wine for less than $11. So, whatever, WA looks pretty damn good ot me from here!


Last time I was in Canada a case of Kokanee was ~26 or ~28 loonies for a 24 pack. That never struck me as a great deal. Then again, I can't remember if that was Whistler or Vancouver.
 
2013-01-01 05:37:01 PM
A lot of voters knew that prices would initially remain high because of the fees and taxes included in the initiative.  Some voters simply wanted the state to get out of the liquor business because they considered it a sin.  Others considered it a socialist state monopoly.  Some voters wanted increased convenience of being able to pick a bottle up from the local grocery store as opposed to making a special trip to a state store.

My big thing is that I wanted to see the specialized wine and spirit superstores open up.  They have about 5× to 10× the retail floor space as your typical WSLCB store, so their selection cannot be beat.  Costco is nice for getting 1.75L bottles of vodka, gin and tequila, but the superstores are where I like to go for my whiskey, rum, liqueurs and Everclear.
 
2013-01-01 05:38:31 PM

Generation_D: I was in favor of Initiative 1100, but against 1183. 1183 was the one that made it. Costco bought the right to sell crappy liquor in bulk, and every one of you that voted for it is an idiot that drove up my booze cost for premium scotch as a result.

 
2013-01-01 05:43:06 PM

adenosine: It was clear that the prices were going to stay the same or go up. We passed the law to get the state out of the business of selling liquor, but the only way it could pass was to keep all the state revenue that the old system had. One visit to the Total Wine that recently opened makes me happy with my vote. A shop like that simply couldn't exist under the old laws.


Sigh. That's right, the selection expanded greatly - you can now buy a whole lot of low-end crap, while they jacked the price on the high-end stuff. The Walmarts of liquor moved in - BevMo and Total Wine - and we've now traded price for selection. What's real fun, of course, is that selection at the high end has dropped in many areas of the state, because private stores won't keep expensive products that won't move, but will happily stock cheap products that sell more quickly. It's harder to find a good selection of single malts - it used to be that, even if your local state liquor store didn't have it in stock, you could ask them to get a couple of bottles for you. Now, your local supermarket just looks at you and laughs, because why in the hell would they do that just for you? Forget that - Safeway can go back to selling cheap Essex Place gin to high-school kids all day and not miss your business one whit.

Welcome to privatization - if it won't generate a profit, well, what's the point?
 
2013-01-01 05:43:25 PM
The retailers were not going to leave money on the table. Thus whatever the "market" was use to paying previously, they were going to continue to charge whether the acquisition costs were lower or not. This is known as the "fark you, pay me!" business method. Ah, but as a result of privatization the state "added" taxes to the distribution and retail portions. No problem, say the retailers and distributors. Rather than being content to deduct these taxes from the prices charged under the old 51.5 percent markup cushion, they merely added the taxes in and raised prices even more. This is known as the ole "fark you, that's why".

See? It's easy!
 
2013-01-01 05:46:27 PM

JSieverts: The y are considering this same bullshiat in PA...here is the issue...the PA Liquor Control Board is the single largest purchaser from every major distiller and winery...they buy in volumes no wholesaler or retailer could come close to, so, obviously, they should get the best prices. I do not claim or think that we should, therefor, have the lowest liquor prices in the country(significantly lower prices would lead towards significantly higher health issues, for instance), but we should, at the very least, have prices comparable to, and competitive with, every surrounding state's, while collecting more in taxes and such, WITHOUT hurting the end consumer. The biggest issue to me, as an end consumer, is that there is NO discounting to the restaurant and bar industry other than not paying the base sales tax (6% statewide, 7% in certain cities)...which makes liquor MORE expensive in our restaurants and bars...
One would think that, properly run, the PA LCB could be a cash cow for the state economy, WHILE being competitive pricewise with the surrounding states. Somehow, this is not happening...THAT is what needs to be fixed...and not fixed by giving a huge gift to certain croneys of the Governor.


Pa generated nearly half a billion dollars in profits from its liquor stores for FY 11-12, so I'm not sure what your definition of cash cow is. I've only lived in VA and PA, and liquor prices are about the same in those states. Wine, on the other hand, is much cheaper and the selection is better in PA from what I've seen. Admittedly the state store in my town is awesome, maybe that's not typical.
 
2013-01-01 05:46:45 PM

mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".


What an adorable way of saying, "I've got nothing."
 
2013-01-01 05:50:42 PM

mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".


If you "could list a dozen examples" why didn't you provide one?
 
2013-01-01 05:51:09 PM
Typical Seattle PI article -- the half of the truth that makes anyone except State government look bad. The fact is that in order to punish the voters for voting to take liquor sales away from the government (and their unwillingly unionized employees) the legislature raised liquor taxes not only to the very highest of any state in the U.S. -- $26.45 per gallon -- but more than twice as much as anyother states except Alabama, Virginia and Oregon. Arizona, for example, levies a $3.00 per gallon tax.
 
2013-01-01 05:54:35 PM

BMFPitt: mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".

What an adorable way of saying, "I've got nothing."


The question was STUPID. You don't get that, do you? Everything isn't about PROFIT. You are an idiot for trying to make it so. Your reply proves you are a clueless imbecile, as is anyone who asks as stupid a question as you asked.

My health should not be a profit center. My children's education should not be a profit center. Prisons should not be profit centers. 3 quick, EASY examples of how idiotic your question is.

Now run along, little boy. Go back to believing the lie that the almighty dollar ALWAYS is the the first thing to be considered...
 
2013-01-01 05:55:23 PM

Nabb1: Liquor is a luxury item, not a necessity. Deal with it.


Someone's never lived in Pullman...
 
2013-01-01 05:56:13 PM
From the article: "Backers of Initiative-1183 had steered clear of claiming the plan would lower prices. But they did mention reductions as a potential benefit because of increased competition."

Um...so which one is it?

www.rankopedia.com

/Nice reporting there, Lou.
 
2013-01-01 05:56:15 PM

kiwichan: mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".

If you "could list a dozen examples" why didn't you provide one?


Because it's a stupid question, asked by a willfully ignorant douche that doesn't understand anything but worshiping the almighty dollar?

Jesus. Americans are so farking stupid. It really is willful ignorance though, so I won't give you a pass.
 
2013-01-01 05:57:50 PM

wraith95: JSieverts: The y are considering this same bullshiat in PA...here is the issue...the PA Liquor Control Board is the single largest purchaser from every major distiller and winery...they buy in volumes no wholesaler or retailer could come close to, so, obviously, they should get the best prices. I do not claim or think that we should, therefor, have the lowest liquor prices in the country(significantly lower prices would lead towards significantly higher health issues, for instance), but we should, at the very least, have prices comparable to, and competitive with, every surrounding state's, while collecting more in taxes and such, WITHOUT hurting the end consumer. The biggest issue to me, as an end consumer, is that there is NO discounting to the restaurant and bar industry other than not paying the base sales tax (6% statewide, 7% in certain cities)...which makes liquor MORE expensive in our restaurants and bars...
One would think that, properly run, the PA LCB could be a cash cow for the state economy, WHILE being competitive pricewise with the surrounding states. Somehow, this is not happening...THAT is what needs to be fixed...and not fixed by giving a huge gift to certain croneys of the Governor.

Pa generated nearly half a billion dollars in profits from its liquor stores for FY 11-12, so I'm not sure what your definition of cash cow is. I've only lived in VA and PA, and liquor prices are about the same in those states. Wine, on the other hand, is much cheaper and the selection is better in PA from what I've seen. Admittedly the state store in my town is awesome, maybe that's not typical.


One major difference is the lack of volume purchase discounts...in most states I have lived in (and I have lived in several), there is at least a 10% discount on a case purchase, and frequently discounts available on smaller multi-paks....something PA does not have. You are right about the wines, the LCB has amazing selections of wines, and, especially if you have a premium selection store, the availability and prices are amazing...I read that when the movie Sideways was out, there was only one wine mentioned in the movie which was not available in the LCB system, and our pricing was about 30% less than nationwide...

But that is my whole point...we do NOT need privatization here...what we need is much better management and interaction with the food management industry. Why should a restaurant buying dozens of cases of wine at a time pay the same per bottle cost (less 6-7% sales tax) as a one bottle a year buyer? As you point out, the LCB brings in hundreds of millions per year...this needs to be fixed.
 
2013-01-01 05:58:08 PM

The My Little Pony Killer: Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.


That's how farkers roll.

Just wait until pot is legalized nationwide, the price goes up like it has on tobacco, and there's absolutely no change in prison populations.

Fark may well explode.
 
2013-01-01 05:58:56 PM
Just to be clear, for the willfully ignorant in this thread:

What should decide whether a particular function is to be managed by government, or private enterprise, is whether the profit motive is likely to provide better service at a lower cost. The key here is that quality service is a critical component of the function, not something that can be compromised for the sake of efficiency, or profit.

Since profit adds to the cost of any activity, for private enterprise to take on a government function and do it as well at the same, or lower cost, it must be able to operate it more efficiently. If it cannot, then there is no reason for it to be operating that function

For the truly stupid:

IT ISN'T ALWAYS ABOUT PROFIT
 
2013-01-01 06:05:31 PM

mediablitz: kiwichan: mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".

If you "could list a dozen examples" why didn't you provide one?

Because it's a stupid question, asked by a willfully ignorant douche that doesn't understand anything but worshiping the almighty dollar?

Jesus. Americans are so farking stupid. It really is willful ignorance though, so I won't give you a pass.


So, given multiple opportunities and direct confrontations on the point, you've still remained entirely unable to provide a single example of something you proclaim to have dozens of responses ready, just waiting to be used.

And you're the one trying to call others ignorant. I'd like to point out (because you're obviously from too shallow in the gene pool to figure out otherwise) that I haven't taken any position in this discussion, I've merely asked you to provide these alleged examples instead of being a pompous know-nothing proclaiming your obvious superiority over the rest of Fark's denizens.
 
2013-01-01 06:06:50 PM

JSieverts: wraith95: JSieverts: The y are considering this same bullshiat in PA...here is the issue...the PA Liquor Control Board is the single largest purchaser from every major distiller and winery...they buy in volumes no wholesaler or retailer could come close to, so, obviously, they should get the best prices. I do not claim or think that we should, therefor, have the lowest liquor prices in the country(significantly lower prices would lead towards significantly higher health issues, for instance), but we should, at the very least, have prices comparable to, and competitive with, every surrounding state's, while collecting more in taxes and such, WITHOUT hurting the end consumer. The biggest issue to me, as an end consumer, is that there is NO discounting to the restaurant and bar industry other than not paying the base sales tax (6% statewide, 7% in certain cities)...which makes liquor MORE expensive in our restaurants and bars...
One would think that, properly run, the PA LCB could be a cash cow for the state economy, WHILE being competitive pricewise with the surrounding states. Somehow, this is not happening...THAT is what needs to be fixed...and not fixed by giving a huge gift to certain croneys of the Governor.

Pa generated nearly half a billion dollars in profits from its liquor stores for FY 11-12, so I'm not sure what your definition of cash cow is. I've only lived in VA and PA, and liquor prices are about the same in those states. Wine, on the other hand, is much cheaper and the selection is better in PA from what I've seen. Admittedly the state store in my town is awesome, maybe that's not typical.

One major difference is the lack of volume purchase discounts...in most states I have lived in (and I have lived in several), there is at least a 10% discount on a case purchase, and frequently discounts available on smaller multi-paks....something PA does not have. You are right about the wines, the LCB has amazing selections of wines, and, especially if you h ...


Heh, LCB brings in 49 million bucks on 1.5 billion in revenue, and that number has been dropping like a rock since 2000, when it was 78 million bucks on 1.1 billion in revenue.

There's really no excuse for the state to be doing anything other than regulating alcohol sales except political cronyism and tax revenue.
 
2013-01-01 06:08:03 PM

mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".

What an adorable way of saying, "I've got nothing."

The question was STUPID. You don't get that, do you? Everything isn't about PROFIT. You are an idiot for trying to make it so. Your reply proves you are a clueless imbecile, as is anyone who asks as stupid a question as you asked.

My health should not be a profit center. My children's education should not be a profit center. Prisons should not be profit centers. 3 quick, EASY examples of how idiotic your question is.

Now run along, little boy. Go back to believing the lie that the almighty dollar ALWAYS is the the first thing to be considered...


That fits into the whole infrastructure/law&order thing. Did you even read his post before going all white knight on the government and politicians?
 
2013-01-01 06:08:21 PM

Generation_D: Washington state resident here.  The new law was a bogus pile of crap, derped on by "free market" zealots and Coscto marketing.  The state packed the new law with more taxes then said sure, guys, we'll be happy to close our state stores.

My $50 bottles of scotch turned into $75 bottles of scotch overnight.

Everyone in the liquor industry that had studied the new law predicted this, but the idiot public that bought into Cosco's lies defended the new law, always with "less government lower taxes" mantra, without ACTUALLY STUDYING THE NEW LAW.

Results:  Less revenue because taxes are now 25% higher or so, there's another layer of taxes (Wholesale) and yes, we get private stores.  WOOP.   They can't lower prices because they are passing along all the taxes.  Costs are locked in being higher unless taxes are lowered.  And taxes won't be lowered because guess what, we already spent the revenue.  And the majority will never support lowering taxes on liquor, even though we pay the highest liquor tax in the country, by far.  We already paid the highest under the old state stores, but they managed to get it approved to even be higher now, because DUMBASS PUBLIC ASSWIT VOTERS FELL FOR IT believing the lies about the "private free market" would always be lower regardless of the rules.

I was in favor of Initiative 1100, but against 1183.  1183 was the one that made it.  Costco bought the right to sell crappy liquor in bulk, and every one of you that voted for it is an idiot that drove up my booze cost for premium scotch as a result.


Boo hoo farking hoo
 
2013-01-01 06:08:54 PM

JustGetItRight: The My Little Pony Killer: Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.

That's how farkers roll.

Just wait until pot is legalized nationwide, the price goes up like it has on tobacco, and there's absolutely no change in prison populations.

Fark may well explode.


The U.S. has over 2.3 million people behind bars. Nearly a third of all prison admissions are from non violent drug offenses. Of those about 872,720 persons were arrested for marijuana offenses. Eighty-nine percent of these arrests were for possession. So how will it not reduce prison populations?
 
2013-01-01 06:09:22 PM
State-run stores in NH are so much cheaper than private-run places in Mass., Maine, and Vermont that people from those states flock to buy liquor in NH. The state government in NH is very happy to have the income from cross-border sales, so they keep the prices at non-exorbitant levels to encourage that traffic. NH residents get to enjoy cheaper booze and having their government funded by liquor receipts from out-of-staters. Win-win.
 
2013-01-01 06:09:43 PM
Find a Chinese wife

I love scavenger hunts!
 
2013-01-01 06:10:01 PM
Was there a somellier in teh gov't owned liquor store? A big bonus of private liquor stores here is the people that work in them often know a lot about booze.
 
2013-01-01 06:11:34 PM
Government should be the sole seller of bread too.
 
2013-01-01 06:16:57 PM

Generation_D: Mikeyworld: NFA: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

So higher cost products is a good thing?

YAAAAA privatization!!!

It's a good thing when us non-alcoholics don't have to serve those raging boozers any more...

disclaimer: Drank beer until the Gout hit. But, take that, you drunks

The price will go down when the state taxes die off. (ya didn't think they'd lose that money easily, did ya?)

Hey, be sure and let me know what type of recreational activity you are into, so I can organize an initiative to jack up the taxes on it, and get a majority to vote in favor of it making promises.  I guarantee you whether its public parks or roads needing repaired, or bicycle lanes to build or stadiums or something, you use public resources unequal to your current paying into the system, but your smug attitude was part of jacking up taxes on alcohol.

I wonder if you smoke pot.  Can't wait til they start taxing you on that.


Ooooh, touchy

I gots lots of recreational activites. Most of them involve taking services from douchbags. The state's gonna get theirs. And you're right...I'm retired and gettin' my senior discounts, 'cause you alkies have to pay the piper.
 
2013-01-01 06:18:04 PM
The whole "legalizing pot won't reduce crime" idea is moronic. Of course it will, that's why the prison industrial complex is so dead set against legalization. It cuts off a big supply of their product, criminals.
 
2013-01-01 06:22:54 PM

mediablitz: My health should not be a profit center. My children's education should not be a profit center. Prisons should not be profit centers. 3 quick, EASY examples of how idiotic your question is.


Food should not be a profit center. Clothing should not be a profit center. Shelter should not be a profit center. 3 quick, EASY examples of how idiots like you don't have a 5-year-old's understanding of economics.
 
2013-01-01 06:37:53 PM
a 23% tax rate doesn't help either.
 
2013-01-01 06:41:07 PM
FTA: "Also, each brand is often available from only one distributor"

I hate to break the news to you government-loving socialists, but this is not the definition of "deregulated". It's just another government-supervised monopoly, aided by even higher government-mandated taxes.

Allow retailers to buy from ANYONE (not just distributors) and slash the taxes and watch the prices plummet.
 
2013-01-01 06:43:53 PM
Cranialsodomy: Another Washington resident here. The worst part about the privatization is the limited selection.

The distributors want to stock as few SKUs as possible because the more SKUs they carry, the higher their costs. In the distributors' perfect world they each carry only one whiskey, one rum, one vodak.


Sounds like they don't know how to run good liquor stores yet.
 
2013-01-01 06:45:35 PM
Oh look. It's this thread again.

I just went across the street to get me some Woodinville Rye. I didn't have to hop into my car or onto a bus to go to the nearest state-run liquor store; I went to the grocery store. And if they didn't have what I was looking for, chances are the Safeway or the Bartell's one block further would carry it. And if they didn't have it, a huge store of nothing but liquor is a mere 15 minute walk away.

That's convenience right there!

Suck it, haters!
 
2013-01-01 06:49:09 PM

NFA: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

So higher cost products is a good thing?

YAAAAA privatization!!!


No, but it's not a bad thing either. It's just a thing. As long as the products aren't necessities, there's nothing wrong with them being sold at any price they can be sold at. That's just capitalism.
 
2013-01-01 06:57:00 PM
Booze is really cheap in Kentucky. I'm not sure why.
 
2013-01-01 07:04:34 PM
When I hear people complain about repressive liquor laws in various states, I like to bring up the absolute horror story that was the Liquor Control Board of Ontario not too long ago...like 1960's!

http://www.surveillance-and-society.org/Articles4%281%29/alcohol.pdf   pdf document!

Just Imagine:
- Liquor stores were cold, heartless places that were designed you feel like scum for purchasing that demon alcohol.
- The government keeping track of alcohol sales to individuals
- Each drinker required an individual permitor license to drink / purchase alcohol with your personal serial number on it (not just a simple "age of majority" like today-it was real surveillance!)
- Purchasing liquor or wine was a farkin' ORDEAL. Standing in line for hours (especially before a long weekend!)  while indifferent bureaucrats took their own sweet time "serving" customers (Imagine a liquor store run by the slow-asses at your DMV!-that's what it was like!)
- You needed to fill out a farkin' FORM for each purchase. And the clerk would carefully check it and reject it if there was a spelling mistake.  Back to the end of the line with you!
- No sales after 6:00pm or on weekends or holidays.

Visitors from Europe, where you could buy alcohol at corner stores, thought Ontario residents were crazy - a bunch of repressed, little old ladies from the Victorian era.

Fortunately, those old trouts supporting these rules have died off.

We've sure come a long way. Be thankful!
 
2013-01-01 07:12:43 PM
Subby's and all the other's who are eager to paint the higher prices as a result of "capitalism" or privatisation should realize the higher prices are solely due to the 20% plus, taxes on booze.
 
2013-01-01 07:13:17 PM
Evidently your state are all retards. It's amusing to me that in California, I can go to Costco (a Seattle based company) and buy booze cheaper than pretty much anywhere else in this country. Had 1.75L of Bulleit bourbon on sale last summer, $28.99 (vs 34.99).... Stocked up. Drunk as a skunk here. You suck Washington you farked this up you better not fark up your weed legalization.
 
2013-01-01 07:29:06 PM
Too expensive? Don't buy it.

/tired of subsidizing your booze you p.o.s.
 
2013-01-01 07:32:35 PM

Incontinent_dog_and_monkey_rodeo: The whole "legalizing pot won't reduce crime" idea is moronic. Of course it will, that's why the prison industrial complex is so dead set against legalization. It cuts off a big supply of their product, criminals.


dude, legalize meth to + the work ethic in this country. unemployment would become a thing of the past, the prison system would get cleaned up a bit, recycling programs would be everywhere and we'd invent a ton of cool crap by disassembling old radios and reassembling them into new things.
 
2013-01-01 07:46:52 PM

nelsonal: downstairs: NFA: Benevolent Misanthrope: LordZorch: Or course, the state made sure to add in a few extra taxes for several years to make up for no longer illegally running a monopoly after several decades.  Might want to revisit the issue in a few years once they expire.

Yeah, this.  Take the taxes off, and it is indeed less expensive.  Unfortunately, they will NEVER let that happen - the Statehouse knows people aren't going to stop buying booze.  This is a cash cow for them

FTA- "The state's 51.9 percent mark-up went away but was replaced by fees of 10 percent on distributors and 17 percent on retailers."

51.9 - (10+17) + 10 increase = 14.9% privatization fee

Not getting your point?  Serious question, not snark.  It seems like there was a 51.9% markup, and now there's only a 27% markup?

Even a dirt cheap retailer like Wal-Mart operates on a roughly 25% gross markup (that has to pay the rent, employees, etc).  It's likely the state was making around 27% on their 51.9% markup.


Walmart strives for a 16% gross margin.
 
2013-01-01 07:52:40 PM

Day_Old_Dutchie: When I hear people complain about repressive liquor laws in various states, I like to bring up the absolute horror story that was the Liquor Control Board of Ontario not too long ago...like 1960's!

http://www.surveillance-and-society.org/Articles4%281%29/alcohol.pdf   pdf document!

Just Imagine:
- Liquor stores were cold, heartless places that were designed you feel like scum for purchasing that demon alcohol.
- The government keeping track of alcohol sales to individuals
- Each drinker required an individual permitor license to drink / purchase alcohol with your personal serial number on it (not just a simple "age of majority" like today-it was real surveillance!)
- Purchasing liquor or wine was a farkin' ORDEAL. Standing in line for hours (especially before a long weekend!)  while indifferent bureaucrats took their own sweet time "serving" customers (Imagine a liquor store run by the slow-asses at your DMV!-that's what it was like!)
- You needed to fill out a farkin' FORM for each purchase. And the clerk would carefully check it and reject it if there was a spelling mistake.  Back to the end of the line with you!
- No sales after 6:00pm or on weekends or holidays.

Visitors from Europe, where you could buy alcohol at corner stores, thought Ontario residents were crazy - a bunch of repressed, little old ladies from the Victorian era.

Fortunately, those old trouts supporting these rules have died off.

We've sure come a long way. Be thankful!


Who took over when that all changed, anyway? I remember it being like that in the 80s. What was The Beer Store like back then?
 
2013-01-01 08:21:55 PM

mediablitz: BMFPitt: mediablitz: No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

I know this is an attempt at sarcasm, but outside of public safety functions and sometimes infrastructure, can you provide a single example where this is not the case?

Sigh...

Are you SERIOUSLY asking that question? SERIOUSLY? You are a true believer, aren't you? I could list a dozen examples, but I'm certain your willful ignorance overrides any need for "examples".


I can count to five. But I won't. And that's the truth. Tpthptph.
 
2013-01-01 08:27:39 PM
Why would you want prices to drop?

Let me tell you, living in a country full of cheap booze is NOT a good thing. The level of violence and death that results - especially amongst the young - is just depressing. Alcohol should have a higher "sin" tax that cigarettes. A least smokers are usually only killing themselves.


Incontinent_dog_and_monkey_rodeo: The whole "legalizing pot won't reduce crime" idea is moronic. Of course it will, that's why the prison industrial complex is so dead set against legalization. It cuts off a big supply of their product, criminals.


I think you're deliberately misinterpreting people's meaning there. I know you guys love to imagine that the prisons are full of kindly suburban dads and frat boys who've been given lengthy custodial sentences for holding a couple of grams, but that's not actually the case is it? Okay sure, there might be a few less people going to prison for "intent to sell".

But what legalising marijuana will NOT do is reduce the amount of real crime - the gangs and cartels won't suddenly give up their guns and go legit, or get real jobs. They will just find another profit centre and continue to be the violent stain on society they are now. So prisons have really no need to fear, there.
 
2013-01-01 08:28:17 PM

mediablitz: vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?

No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.


If you worked in the gov you would already know this to be true, as myself and everyone else employed by the govt dows
 
2013-01-01 08:45:00 PM
This privitization has allowed the growth of smalltime distilleries. If you're ever up in the Bellingham area, I urge you to drop by Bellewood Acres at 6140 Guide Meridian. It's a farm that grows mainly apples and has recently begun selling vodka, apple brandy, and gin made on the premises from stuff grown there. The distillery tour should not be missed. They're supposed to have whiskey and applejack in a few years.
 
2013-01-01 08:45:25 PM
Solution:

www.coppermoonshinestills.com
 
2013-01-01 09:06:25 PM

Gdalescrboz: mediablitz: vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?

No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

If you worked in the gov you would already know this to be true, as myself and everyone else employed by the govt dows


That explains why foreigners avoid our public graduate schools like the plague and our army and navy always get their asses kicked.

...oh wait...
 
2013-01-01 09:12:26 PM

StrikitRich: smonter: Don't forget retail sales tax as well:

http://liq.wa.gov/stores/liquor-pricing

When the states ran the store they didn't collect sales tax and now they do. This is hardly a equal comparison. If you were to remove the additional taxes the price would in fact be below the price before privatization.

Shhh, you'll confuse the dumb masses with facts.


I have a feeling that most commenting with the "OMG privatization is evil" are missing a lot of valid points for this move. I would like to see some details on how much money the government spent on the store upkeep and other factors in keeping a business like this. It's also easy to run a monopoly on something that the private sector gets heavily regulated and scrutinized for.
 
2013-01-01 09:14:07 PM

wotthefark: JustGetItRight: The My Little Pony Killer: Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.

That's how farkers roll.

Just wait until pot is legalized nationwide, the price goes up like it has on tobacco, and there's absolutely no change in prison populations.

Fark may well explode.

The U.S. has over 2.3 million people behind bars. Nearly a third of all prison admissions are from non violent drug offenses. Of those about 872,720 persons were arrested for marijuana offenses. Eighty-nine percent of these arrests were for possession. So how will it not reduce prison populations?


They still broke the law and should serve their time. No amnesty unless you are an illegal trying to steal a job.
 
2013-01-01 09:15:13 PM
Who are these idiots who claim to live in Washington, but live too far from a Indian-run liquor store to do a little stockpiling? Yes, the grocery store is convenient, but if you're a serious alcoholic then take a short drive, see the countryside, and get a trunk full of no-tax liquor...
 
2013-01-01 09:16:52 PM

TorqueToad: I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.

Was this link greened so people could have a political fight over pet issues?


These threads exist so I can find out who on Fark lives near me.

Not sure why you're here.
 
2013-01-01 09:17:41 PM

FloydA: Gdalescrboz: mediablitz: vpb: Let me guess.  The same thing that always happens then something is privatized or deregulated?

No. You have that backwards. The government is ALWAYS wrong, ALWAYS inefficient, and private businesses can ALWAYS do it better.

If you worked in the gov you would already know this to be true, as myself and everyone else employed by the govt dows

That explains why foreigners avoid our public graduate schools like the plague and our army and navy always get their asses kicked.

...oh wait...


Our universities are quickly becoming obsolete as people realize they are a money hole. Our military, of which I'm in, can't be matched because other militaries are more bureaucratic than ours and receive a fraction of the funding; not because of the endless miles of red tape and wasteful spending.
 
2013-01-01 09:21:48 PM
You can pry from my dead cold hands from a handle of booze bought at a tax free NH liquor store when I'm dead. Pack of smokes in NH $5.80 same pack in Ma $8.25+, booze is just as bad plus the bottle bill adds 5 cents to every friggin can/bottle.
 
2013-01-01 09:32:07 PM

Fade2black: I'll pay more for my booze, knowing the government isn't wasting money on the upkeep the stores and the land cost, and using it as an excuse to overpay basic retail and offer pensions to push a few buttons and take my money for lotto tickets.


Why do you hate the concept of people earning enough to make a living or having enough money in their retirement to not have to eat catfood for dinner?
 
2013-01-01 09:44:04 PM

TorqueToad: I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.


So then why the fark are you in the thread?  Somebody have a gun to your head?
 
2013-01-01 09:47:04 PM

Alphakronik: Solution:

[www.coppermoonshinestills.com image 480x640]


uh... using a copper still will make you sick, brah, you need a better metal.
 
2013-01-01 09:54:16 PM
Licenses are the worst kind of entitlements. The right wing talk show blabbermouths never seem to notice the handouts at the top of the economic chain.
 
2013-01-01 10:00:36 PM

mediablitz: The question was STUPID. You don't get that, do you? Everything isn't about PROFIT. You are an idiot for trying to make it so. Your reply proves you are a clueless imbecile, as is anyone who asks as stupid a question as you asked.


So what you're saying is that either you fundamentally failed to comprehend the question, or you are pretending that you fundamentally failed to comprehend the question.

My health should not be a profit center.

Pretty much all the medicines, tools, and treatments used were created for a profit motive. I like having them around. Also, what does that have to do with my question?

My children's education should not be a profit center.

You should want the best education possible for the best value. Apparently you would prefer a lower quality education for a higher cost, as long as nobody "profits" from it. You also seem to exclude a lot of groups who profit greatly from traditional public education from your definition of "profit." Also, what does that have to do with my question?

Prisons should not be profit centers.

That is correct. Also, what does that have to do with my question?

3 quick, EASY examples of how idiotic your question is.

See above.

Now run along, little boy. Go back to believing the lie that the almighty dollar ALWAYS is the the first thing to be considered...

Well isn't that special.
 
2013-01-01 10:07:08 PM
t0.gstatic.com

You can thank the invisible hand of capitalism
 
2013-01-01 10:15:45 PM

lilbjorn: [t0.gstatic.com image 194x259]

You can thank the invisible hand of capitalism


You should really be pointing that back at the government and probably some of the people who wrote 1183 but I guess that would require knowing what you're talking about.
 
2013-01-01 11:05:18 PM

TorqueToad: I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.

Was this link greened so people could have a political fight over pet issues?


No, you see we had this meeting, it was before lunch, around 11:30 EST. Since you weren't up yet we didn't invite you.
Anyway, at this meeting we decided to green light a link to a mundane article that would really only be of interest to no one except those locally invovled and affected by it.
And though we all wished that the subject of the article wouldn't turn into a politicle fight and be squabbled over like some pet issue. We knew that in reality, this being Fark, it would come to that.
But in all fairness, without you in attendance at the meeting we were a bit unorganized in our efforts.
We tried to do a good job.
In the future, we will schedule these meetings in the afternoon so that you are able to attend.

Regards
The Staff
 
2013-01-01 11:11:37 PM

DownDaRiver: TorqueToad: I can't see why I should care about liquor prices in Washington state. Or whether they are privatized.

Was this link greened so people could have a political fight over pet issues?

No, you see we had this meeting, it was before lunch, around 11:30 EST. Since you weren't up yet we didn't invite you.
Anyway, at this meeting we decided to green light a link to a mundane article that would really only be of interest to no one except those locally invovled and affected by it.
And though we all wished that the subject of the article wouldn't turn into a politicle fight and be squabbled over like some pet issue. We knew that in reality, this being Fark, it would come to that.
But in all fairness, without you in attendance at the meeting we were a bit unorganized in our efforts.
We tried to do a good job.
In the future, we will schedule these meetings in the afternoon so that you are able to attend.

Regards
The Staff


You got some sort of agenda?!?!
 
2013-01-01 11:40:42 PM
i877.photobucket.com

Agenda? I don't need no stinkin agenda!


/ya I know, had this one laying around. Didn't feel like looking for the right one
 
NFA [TotalFark]
2013-01-02 12:21:39 AM

nelsonal: Even a dirt cheap retailer like Wal-Mart operates on a roughly 25% gross markup (that has to pay the rent, employees, etc).  It's likely the state was making around 27% on their 51.9% markup.


Costco works on an 8% markup and is highly successful.
 
2013-01-02 01:17:31 AM

Generation_D: Washington state resident here.  The new law was a bogus pile of crap, derped on by "free market" zealots and Coscto marketing.  The state packed the new law with more taxes then said sure, guys, we'll be happy to close our state stores.

My $50 bottles of scotch turned into $75 bottles of scotch overnight.

Everyone in the liquor industry that had studied the new law predicted this, but the idiot public that bought into Cosco's lies defended the new law, always with "less government lower taxes" mantra, without ACTUALLY STUDYING THE NEW LAW.

Results:  Less revenue because taxes are now 25% higher or so, there's another layer of taxes (Wholesale) and yes, we get private stores.  WOOP.   They can't lower prices because they are passing along all the taxes.  Costs are locked in being higher unless taxes are lowered.  And taxes won't be lowered because guess what, we already spent the revenue.  And the majority will never support lowering taxes on liquor, even though we pay the highest liquor tax in the country, by far.  We already paid the highest under the old state stores, but they managed to get it approved to even be higher now, because DUMBASS PUBLIC ASSWIT VOTERS FELL FOR IT believing the lies about the "private free market" would always be lower regardless of the rules.

I was in favor of Initiative 1100, but against 1183.  1183 was the one that made it.  Costco bought the right to sell crappy liquor in bulk, and every one of you that voted for it is an idiot that drove up my booze cost for premium scotch as a result.


Yeah....I'm a real idiot for voting yes....especially since I own Costco stock.
 
2013-01-02 02:17:22 AM

DownDaRiver: [i877.photobucket.com image 450x362]

Agenda? I don't need no stinkin agenda!


/ya I know, had this one laying around. Didn't feel like looking for the right one


I would have settled for the minutes from last week's meeting, ya know
 
2013-01-02 02:24:14 AM
Thanks, Free Market!
 
2013-01-02 02:55:29 AM

Day_Old_Dutchie: When I hear people complain about repressive liquor laws in various states, I like to bring up the absolute horror story that was the Liquor Control Board of Ontario not too long ago...like 1960's!


Wasn't the Canadian musical comedy group "MacLean and MacLean" turned over to the local police based on an LCBO complain? It was because they used the word "FARK" (the real F word) in their act.

It took until 1982 until Blair and Gary MacLean were cleared by the Canadian Supreme Court.
Holy Fark!

Link to their infamous "fark ya" tune. Audio Only NSFW (in Red States, PEI, Newfoundland and Labrador and parts of Nova Scotia)

MacLean and MacLean - Fark Ya!
 
2013-01-02 06:38:25 AM

Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.


read the article. They added a 10% fee, and allow distributors to bid for exclusive rights to distribute brands. Competition should drive down prices, but only if the prices aren't 1) being artificially inflated by government regulation, 2) being kept high by restrictions on free market activity, and 3) still high because the change occurred only 6 months ago and other providers haven't built up their distribution network.
 
2013-01-02 07:41:51 AM

adenosine: Cranialsodomy: Another Washington resident here. The worst part about the privatization is the limited selection.

You're not going to the right stores.


The "right stores" are in Seattle. I live in Grays Harbor County. The old state run liquor store in Aberdeen carried the same stuff at the same prices that the liquor stores in Seattle do. Now, that selection is gone, replaced by what Safeway carries.
 
2013-01-02 09:44:36 AM

wotthefark: JustGetItRight: The My Little Pony Killer: Collecting taxes off marijuana sales: good.

Collecting taxes off liquor sales: omg cash cow.

That's how farkers roll.

Just wait until pot is legalized nationwide, the price goes up like it has on tobacco, and there's absolutely no change in prison populations.

Fark may well explode.

The U.S. has over 2.3 million people behind bars. Nearly a third of all prison admissions are from non violent drug offenses. Of those about 872,720 persons were arrested for marijuana offenses. Eighty-nine percent of these arrests were for possession. So how will it not reduce prison populations?


Because those people that are stealing to support an addiction will still be stealing to support an addiction that now costs significantly more.

Those dealers that are earning a living slinging on the corner will either still keep slinging on the corner and now go jail for tax offenses or whatever they end up calling the crime selling unlicensed drugs (and it will be a crime). Even worse, a lot of them will be put out of business by the corner smoke shop because the white college kid can afford to pay the higher prices and will no longer have to risk street buys. Those unemployed dealers aren't going to say 'oh well, I guess it is off to a minimum wage job at McDonalds or Wal-Mart', they're going to simply transition to another illegal activity like burglary, identity theft, etc. so they'll still wind up in jail too.
 
2013-01-02 10:27:36 AM

Dinki: The My Little Pony Killer: Nobody believed it would lower the price.  Stop acting like a victim.

I thought competition always drove down prices.


Ceteris paribus. Learn it, love it. When in addition to increasing competition, you have state gov't raising taxes, federal reserve printing money like it's Zimbabwe 1998, the mix of products possibly changing (more expensive brands selling more), and a gazillion other dynamic variables - then competition can "drive up" prices. Correlation is not necessarily causation.
 
2013-01-02 01:34:47 PM
How about the fact that the distribution laws in the US are old mob laws? Why haven't we corrected this in the last 20 years?

And I like how you guys think that in a few years the price will come down. As if a private company will lower its profit margin, even though its customers are used to paying price. Companies like that are few and far between, Costco being the only one off the top of my head.

I own a bar in Wisconsin. My liquor prices via distributors have gone down zero times.
 
2013-01-02 02:06:25 PM

AidanPryde98: And I like how you guys think that in a few years the price will come down. As if a private company will lower its profit margin, even though its customers are used to paying price. Companies like that are few and far between, Costco being the only one off the top of my head.



There is a tax that is supposed to sunset...that's why prices will go down.
 
2013-01-02 02:09:05 PM

The_Sponge: AidanPryde98: And I like how you guys think that in a few years the price will come down. As if a private company will lower its profit margin, even though its customers are used to paying price. Companies like that are few and far between, Costco being the only one off the top of my head.


There is a tax that is supposed to sunset...that's why prices will go down.


Right. I'm sure they will pass it on to the consumer instead of pocketing it.
 
2013-01-02 02:20:26 PM

AidanPryde98: The_Sponge: AidanPryde98: And I like how you guys think that in a few years the price will come down. As if a private company will lower its profit margin, even though its customers are used to paying price. Companies like that are few and far between, Costco being the only one off the top of my head.


There is a tax that is supposed to sunset...that's why prices will go down.

Right. I'm sure they will pass it on to the consumer instead of pocketing it.



There's this thing called competition....maybe you've heard of it.
 
2013-01-02 02:51:21 PM
I refer you to the first part of my post. The main problem being the distribution laws. They compete for the rights to sell these brands. The amount paid for a brand is never going to go down, only up. Therefore, your costs are never going down either. Unless by some miracle, people stop drinking en masse.

I'll put it another way, the tv rights for NFL games have gone up every time since the 80's. Do you see them going down ever? I can see them stagnating at best.

There is a place for deregulation. Time will tell if this one of those places.
 
2013-01-02 04:18:22 PM

AidanPryde98: I refer you to the first part of my post. The main problem being the distribution laws. They compete for the rights to sell these brands. The amount paid for a brand is never going to go down, only up. Therefore, your costs are never going down either. Unless by some miracle, people stop drinking en masse.

I'll put it another way, the tv rights for NFL games have gone up every time since the 80's. Do you see them going down ever? I can see them stagnating at best.

There is a place for deregulation. Time will tell if this one of those places.


I do not understand your analogy. Has there been a second professional football league of equal entertainment value offering to sell game rights to television stations? If not, I am not sure you understand the point about competition. I will agree, though, that distribution rights that give the equivalent of a monopoly to certain brands does impair competition, though i would say that most well brands of alcohol are fungible enough that even brand based monopolies shouldn't prevent some competition.
 
MrT
2013-01-02 05:40:16 PM
Was pleasantly surprised when I moved to CA a couple of years how cheap the booze is.

You get raped on cost for pretty much everything else, but hey, at least you can drown your sorrows on the cheap!
 
2013-01-02 05:49:31 PM

MycroftHolmes: AidanPryde98: I refer you to the first part of my post. The main problem being the distribution laws. They compete for the rights to sell these brands. The amount paid for a brand is never going to go down, only up. Therefore, your costs are never going down either. Unless by some miracle, people stop drinking en masse.

I'll put it another way, the tv rights for NFL games have gone up every time since the 80's. Do you see them going down ever? I can see them stagnating at best.

There is a place for deregulation. Time will tell if this one of those places.

I do not understand your analogy. Has there been a second professional football league of equal entertainment value offering to sell game rights to television stations? If not, I am not sure you understand the point about competition. I will agree, though, that distribution rights that give the equivalent of a monopoly to certain brands does impair competition, though i would say that most well brands of alcohol are fungible enough that even brand based monopolies shouldn't prevent some competition.


Yes, pull Captain Morgan and Jack Daniels off the rail for their nearest competitor and watch as your business is gone in less than three months.

My point is there is only an illusion of competition. As I'm in the business, I certainly hope it isn't me that is confused.
 
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