Budweiser

Not the Worst Thing Budweiser Has Ever Done, But Still

→ "Canned Patriotism: Uh-oh. Budweiser is changing its name to AMERICA for the summer. (Actually owned by foreign company.) How far we've fallen―from grand experiment to brand experiment." ← (Detail of cartoon by Jen Sorensen, via Daily Kos Comics, 24 May 2016.)It is my regret to advise that Jen Sorensen is actually not joking. Well, not about that part, at least, but what’s a cartoonist to do?

Sadly, though, no, it’s not a joke. InBev is actually doing this:

The America labels are only going on 12-ounce bottles and 12-ounce cans, said Nick Mills, general manager at the Baldwinsville brewery. Other sizes―such as 24- and 16-ounce cans―will be in patriotically-themed case boxes and packages, but will not be labeled as America.

“We do summer patriotic packages every year,” he said, noting past labels and artwork that featured the Stars and Stripes or the Statue of Liberty. “This one seems to be getting more attention.”

It has raised eyebrows from those who question the use of the word “America” by a brewer not based in the United States. A-B InBev was formed in 2008 when InBev, itself a merger of Belgian and Brazilian brewing interests, acquired Anheuser-Busch in a $50 billion takeover. A-B had been founded in 1876 in St. Louis, which remains its U.S. headquarters.

(Cazentre)

Certes, ’tis unspeakably crass, but let’s face it, this is hardly the worst thing “America’s Rape Brewery”™ has ever done. Generally speaking, Budweiser ought to be disqualified from being “America’s beer”.

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Image note Detail of cartoon by Jen Sorensen, via Daily Kos Comics, 24 May 2016

Cazentre, Don. “‘America’ rolls off the bottling line at Upstate NY’s Budweiser plant”. Syracuse.com. 25 May 2016.

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The Problem With Maureen Dowd

While the situation regarding New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and the George Washington Bridge raises a host of questions, one might reasonably wonder at the processes by which we might ask, with a straight face, if this can be blamed on President Obama. Or, as Maureen Dowd would have it:

Maureen DowdThe governor was a beneficiary of America’s desperate hunger for genuine leadership. You can blame Obama for the Christie tulip craze. The president has been so wan, he confused people into thinking that bluster was clarity. In a climate with no leadership, the bully looks like a man. If you’ve only been drinking water, Red Bull tastes like whiskey.

Obama’s ethereal insipidity made Christie’s meaty pugilism attractive; Obama’s insistence on the cerebral made voters long for the visceral, even the gracelessly visceral.

George W. Bush was the Decider who engaged in thoughtless action. So America veered toward Obama, who engaged in thoughtful inaction. Then they careered toward Christie, another practitioner of thoughtless action.

When all you have is leading from behind, there’s a place in your heart for in-your-face.

Wait, what? Really?

No, really?

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