Well Worth It indeed

The aptly named Well Worth It blog has delivered a great defense of consumer choice. Unfortunately for them, we don’t have a contest for best blog post. At least not yet.

It is well worth your time to read the author’s dissection of arguments from our opponents, the Tennessee Wine and Spirits Retailers Association.

Our favorite line:

“So here’s the question: are the wine and liquor store employees adding value or not? Any government mandate can create jobs. Here’s one that we could try: we should outlaw self-service gas pumps because they take jobs away from gas station attendants. Here’s another: all elevators should require an elevator operator.”

Read Booze, Convenience and Consumer Choice in its entirety


2 Responses to “Well Worth It indeed”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    The true value-added function of the local licensees is that they care about the communities they live in. And they have to follow strict rules to stay in business. So the system becomes self-policing. That is the purpose of the “archaic” laws enforced by the state of Tennessee.
    They also add value by keeping profits in the state – not sending them out. We already know people are going to purchase alcohol, even if it is illegal to do so. So the state of Tennessee decided to legalize it, tax it, and keep it local. From a financial point of view, this action was a no-brainer. Call it protectionism, but it works. And if you pick up the phone and call grocery stores in the states that do allow them to sell wine, you find the prices aren’t neccessarily higher here – there’s enough competition to keep prices down. A win/win/win.
    Finally, don’t forget the approximately 30% of Tennesseans who don’t drink, and/or disapprove of drinking on religious grounds. The local retailers provide an added value to this large minority of Tennesseans by keeping alcohol out of sight, if not beer, at least the high-alcohol products. You won’t hear from those people on this blog, nor will they be at the Tennessee Wine and Spirits Retailers Association meeting. But just because they are not “consumers” does not mean they don’t matter. They live and work here too.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    “…so Bookpeople and Waterloo called in CivicEconomics, a consultancy. They went through the books and found that for every $100 spent at the two locals, $45 stayed in Austin in wages to loca staff, payments to other local merchants, and so on. When that sum went to a typical Borders store, only $13 went back into circulation locally.” – from The Economist, August 1st, 2009, p. 28.

    The article goes on to explain the “local multiplier” effect.

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