State-store buncombe I
The letter “PLCB yields real money” (Dec. 7 and TribLIVE.com) by Wendell W. Young IV, United Food and Commercial Workers Pennsylvania Wine and Spirits Council president, is yawningly similar to everything else he has been saying to defend the police-enforced state retail monopoly the past few years — and it's still buncombe.
The PLCB “generated more than $500 million in profits and taxes”? A private system would still collect the taxes, over 75 percent of that total and probably more; fewer people would buy booze out of state. The “profits” are variable and nowhere near what they could be, thanks to inflated overhead and costly failures like the wine kiosks.
The in-house TableLeaf is the fifth most popular brand of chardonnay? Not surprising: The stores tout it constantly and it's deliberately priced under private brands, a devious use of the agency's monopoly power. If the PLCB outsells private labels and puts them out of business, will we see state-owned wineries, too?
As we've seen from the arrogant parade of PLCB failures and ethical lapses — the kiosks, overstuffed storage trailers, courtesy-training contract and now the ethics investigation of the CEO and former chairman — it's an all-too-independent agency. It's past time to privatize.
The writer blogs at noplcb.blogspot.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- The real big spenders
- Thankful this holiday
- Voting insanity
- ‘Change’ promise kept
- For their own benefit
- Can’t go it alone
- It’s supposed to be a ‘holiday’
- Patriotic concern