Maybe the former name of the blog is appropriate here because I’m starting to wonder if there’s a snowstorm brewing somewhere. There’s a newspaper column calling for less nanny-statism.
The story starts by highlighting a bar owner who isn’t quite making the minimum amount of revenue on food at this Roanoke bar. He has shown the bureaucrats overwhelming evidence that he has tried various marketing efforts to get food sales up enough to keep his mixed drink liquor license, but it just hasn’t hit the magic number yet. His license is being suspended, and he’s paying a fine for the “crime” of not selling enough food.
Back in May, I suggested that Markell create a new menu item: the $1,000 bologna sandwich entree, with sides of sliced beets and sauteed rutabagas. Markell could buy one for himself every time he needed a little boost to get over the food-sales hump.
Markell agrees that baloney is a fitting metaphor for many of the ridiculous regulations liquor licensees have to follow. But he has a more radical idea.
Why not simply let a bar be a bar?
“They keep saying Virginia has a great business environment, but if you want to have a neighborhood bar, that’s not true,” Markell said.
So here’s a suggestion for Virginia legislators, every one of whom claims to be pro-small business.
Act like that, and introduce legislation that repeals certain hard-to-fathom ABC laws.
Keep the stuff that makes some sense, such as the prohibition on serving minors and intoxicated patrons, and requiring bars to close by 2a.m. Keep forcing bars to buy their liquor from the ABC, which produces significant revenue for state coffers. Maintain the prohibition on nude dancing in licensed establishments. That’ll keep the prudes quiet.
But why are bars forbidden from hanging neon beer signs in windows, when they can fill their walls with branded-beer posters?
Why, during happy hour, can a patron order a pitcher of Bud – which can hold four beers – but he can’t have more than two individual beers on the bar at once?
Why can’t bars advertise happy hour specials on social media?
Why can’t anybody order pitchers of margaritas, ever? All mixed drinks in pitchers are illegal in Virginia.
That stuff and more should be repealed.
Go read the whole thing to get the full story behind the honest barkeep who is getting screwed by the unreasonable rules.