The results are in and state of Washington voters aren’t the sheep I thought they were.
Here’s the deal. Last year, they tried to privatize liquor sales in our state. Yeah, I grew up in California, where this is a non-issue. But when I moved up here in 1973, I was amazed to find out that the state actually controlled booze sales. Sure, you could get beer and wine in the grocery store, because as we know, you can’t get drunk on those. But as far as evil, evil hard liquor, we could not be trusted with the high-octane stuff.
And besides, then the state could mark it up 52%.
Seriously. A bottle of fine single malt scotch in California would run $24. Sure, you could spend more, but there was no need. Up here, those same bottles of Scotch would cost you $35. There was that much mark up.
But last year, when the issue was brought up, it was voted down because of a well-run fear tactic campaign. That was one strike: instead of saying why the current way is better, opponents to privatization spoke of what could happen–teens being able to easily buy hard liquor and our state’s votes being bought by Costco. The righteous group trying to save our state was “Protect our Communities”. Yep, sounds like a nice bunch of citizens who are worried about the effects of demon rum.
But while Costco was held up as the villain financing the “For” vote in both elections, what “Protect our Communities” failed to point out was that it was basically a coalition of unions and distributors trying to protect their pockets. Again, if that’s the case, tell us that…but instead of those Firefighters and Policemen held up in front of the camera saying, “If this passes, all of our union brothers and sisters would be out of a job”, they portrayed their stance as being the moral high ground.
Over time, you’ll realize that we’ve made a wise choice. That the state will actually save the cost of running those stores and paying those employees and go back to just collecting taxes on the product….and we’ll come out ahead, if the state’s own estimates hold true.
The anti-1183 that ticked me off the most is the one that said, “Let’s show Costco that our democracy is not for sale.” First off, that’s already true and we proved it. The unions and distributors (including one in Wisconsin of all places) couldn’t buy our democracy or two elections’ worth of deception.
Just in case it’s not clear, everybody, the good guys won this time.