The Connection Between Heavy Drugs and Alcohol Wholesalers

drugsMy original unquestioning acceptance of the conclusion is embarrassing in retrospect. Still, I chalked it up to the outstanding and powerful drugs my oral surgeon gave me after taking five of my teeth in one sitting. I now also see it as an object lesson in why one shouldn’t attempt to read and analyze anything while on drugs.

I’m thinking of the recently reported survey of American adults and their relationship to the alcohol regulatory system. I didn’t get a chance to read this survey when it was first published last week because I was preparing to have those five teeth pulled. I later picked it up and read it while in a beautiful, serene, oxicodone-induced haze. That was a mistake.

The first thing I read was the survey’s conclusions:

“The public is overwhelmingly supportive of the current system of alcohol laws & regulations in the United States”

Well, what you do you know, I thought? Ok…I set the survey down and moved on to my next adventure in La La Land.

But then, later and still hopped up on oxicodone, I got to thinking, how could a survey-taker explain to their respondents the three-tier system, tied house laws, the tangle of direct shipping laws, the morass of self distribution laws and how they related to the different kinds of alcohol and do all this while referencing the different laws in the 50 states?

How would you word a question that took all that into account?

I thought about that for a few minutes, but that’s all I could muster. I let it slide.

Well, the teeth feel a bit better now. I’m sober now. I’m not on heavy drugs now. In the back of my mind I couldn’t stop thinking about how all these issues could be explained by a survey taker.

So I decided I should go see how they could word a question involving such a complex set of issues that would lead to responses that made the researchers conclude, “The pubic is overwhelmingly in favor of the current system of alcohol laws and regulations in the United States.”

Here’s how they worded the questions:

Do you support or oppose the right of individual states to set their own laws and regulations surrounding the manufacture, distribution and sale of alcohol?

Do you support or oppose the current law making 21 the legal age at which you can purchase alcohol?

Agree or disagree: It is very important to keep the alcohol industry regulated?

Agree or disagree: Alcohol should NOT be sold just like other consumer goods such as lawn furniture or cereal

Nothing about the Three Tier System. Nothing about Tied House laws. Nothing about Direct Shipping. Nothing about Self Distribution. Nothing about 50 sets of laws.

And yet someone concluded from the responses that, “The pubic is overwhelmingly in favor of the current system of alcohol laws and regulations in the United States.”

It made me wonder if the people who drew this conclusions from the survey questions also just had 5 teeth pulled and if they too were on heavy drugs?

Well it turns out they weren’t on drugs. But pretty close. You see, the survey was commissioned by the Center for Alcohol Policy—which is a funded by and a creation of the National Beer Wholesalers Association.

I’m glad I returned to investigate this “survey” when I was sober and no longer hopped up on great drugs. It taught me a valuable lesson: The only way you can trust anything wholesalers say is if you are on drugs.


4 Responses

  1. Steve - August 23, 2015

    I wondered why you did not respond last week when this diatribe hit the bricks. Now we know.
    The Three Tier Distribution system was designed by politicians and for politicians much the same way politicians for the past 8 years has been picking winners and losers and printing money for their mutual benefit (winners and politicians). As with the current economic policies of government elites the Three Tier Distribution system will never change as long as the public doesn’t understand it. The public will never get it and teaching the public about the distribution system is like teaching pigs to sign-it annoys the pig and was the instructors time. Campaigns in 50 states are funded by Distributors.

  2. Karen - August 24, 2015

    Haha! I love this, and thank you for looking into it further. Surveys can be terribly misleading. In order to design a proper one, it takes a lot of thought and effort. And then reporting the results accurately is another art as well. Clearly, this was not a well-designed study.

  3. 1WineDude - August 24, 2015

    Thanks, Tom – I was hoping you were going to give this one the skewer!

  4. Scott - August 25, 2015

    There it is! Glad you’re okay.

Leave a Reply