Beer

Maryland Has a Bad Beer Bill on Tap

The House of Delegates passes a measure that could hobble brewers.

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Etsy

First the good news: The Maryland House of Delegates just passed a bill that would quadruple the amount of beer that breweries are permitted to sell in their taproom. Now the bad news: Those brewers will have to try to squeeze those sales into less time, because the bill would also require them to stop serving by 9 on weeknights and by 10 on Fridays and Saturdays. (Depending on where they're located, they're currently allowed to stay open til either midnight or 2 a.m.) The bill also bans the brewers' taprooms from selling other companies' products.

In other words, the law takes away a lot more than it allows. The aim of all this, apparently, is to protect traditional bars and liquor stores from competition.

This had been one of three rival beer bills in the legislature. The best one would have loosened the restrictions on how much beer the brewers could serve without adding those new controls. The other measure was a cronyist proposal that essentially would have carved out a special privilege for a Guinness brewery coming soon to Baltimore County, upping the amount it could serve in its taproom without offering a comparable increase elsewhere. (Speaking as a local: I'm all for bringing more Guinness to the area, but I'd like the rest of the state's beermakers to have the same rights.) Guinness had actually endorsed the more sensible legislation, but it had this one ready too, just in case. Beer writer Liz Murphy called it the "cover your ass bill."

The legislation will now go to the Maryland Senate, where hopefully it will die. If these new rules do become law, Guinness will be able to handle them, but they'll kneecap a lot of smaller businesses. It'd be a double tragedy: a bill so bad that it drives you to drink, but which also takes drinks off the table.

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  1. Maryland: the worst state or the best prison?

    1. Actually, Virginia is even worse. As bad as Maryland is, it at least has civilized traffic laws. Virginia is this horrific combination of left wing nanny state NOVA and old school SOCON down state. They basically compromise in the legislature by controlling every single aspect of life.

      1. The idea that you could actually GO TO JAIL for speeding in Virginia is repulsive.

        1. Or that radar detectors are illegal. One of the Nationals players did like a week in jail in Virginia because they caught him going 105 on the beltway in his Porsche. Virginia sucks. It is not the worst state but it is absolutely the most overrated state in the country. People act like it is better than the rest of the East Coast when in fact it is as bad or worse in every significant way.

          1. Eh. Virginia’s still better than Maryland. Also, if Maryland’s traffic laws are so great, then why can’t anyone from Maryland drive?

            1. I drive in both states all of the time and see no difference. I really can’t see how Virginia is any better or any different other than their suburbs are ugly.

              1. Maryland drivers are objectively worse.

              2. You’re in Northern Virginia, though, which is for all intents and purposes Southern Maryland. The NoVa suburbs are also particularly, enthusiastically heinous, although places like Virginia Beach and Chesterfield are doing their damnedest to become identical to them.

                1. If you didn’t count NOVA, Virginia would be a half way decent state. But if you didn’t count Baltimore or Montgomery Country, so would Maryland. The Western parts and the eastern shore are fine.

          2. All I know I encountered a busy body from Maryland at a rest area gas station. I told her to fuck off and mind her business.

            We couldn’t believe it.

            The arrogance.

            1. Around here, if someone is behaving stupidly on the road, there’s a very good chance their license plate says either Maryland, Florida, or (oddly enough) Quebec.

  2. http://www.thesun.co.uk/news/3…..test-news/

    The news from London continues to get worse. So much for gun control stopping terrorism. The guy had a 4×4 and a knife. And so much for an armed populace doing much good either. The guy wanted to die and while conceal and carry is nice, unless you get very lucky, your handgun is unlikely to save you from being run over on a pedestrian bridge by a lunatic in a 4×4.

    1. At first I thought you meant he was carrying a knife and a large length of cut lumber used to support wooden decks.

      1. I thought the same exact thing.

      2. No, he meant the AK-47 of automobiles.

        1. No one needs a car that can send power to all 4 wheels!

    2. Should have thought about this before conquering India, I guess.

      1. No Zeb, they should have thought about that before they allowed Muslims into their country. The price of having a Muslim population is events like today. The people who were killed and injured today in a very real sense were killed and injured so that Muslims may live in Britain.

        Perhaps that is a price worth paying. I doubt the people who are dead would agree that it is. But the people who think it is should be honest enough to admit that instead of lying and pretending there is some way that you can have a Muslim population and not have terrorism.

        1. And the reason why a whole lot of the Muslims that are there are there is because they included India (including what is now Pakistan) in their empire and now in their commonwealth of nations, making immigration easy.

          Sorry I didn’t think that would be too subtle for you. There are a lot of Muslims in Britain that are not there because of current immigration policies, but because of the historical extent of the British empire.

          1. They British were for many years very strict about allowing people from their colonies to enter Britain. There were hardly any Pakistanis in Britain before the immigration reforms of the 1960s. The British conquering India really has nothing to do with it. India and Pakistan were already independent countries when they immigrated.

            1. Don’t people from commonwealth nations have preferential status when immigrating to the UK?

              1. NO they did not, at least not from the Sub Continent before 1948 anyway.

                1. John, I’m not talking about before 1948. Pay attention to the tenses people use, it’s a big hint as to what they are actually trying to say. There wasn’t a formal commonwealth until 1949.

                  Unless you have a way of undoing 70 years of history, I’m not sure what your point is beyond the pretty obvious observation that Muslims are responsible for a lot of terrorism.

                  1. India got its independence in 1947. So yes, the choose to let Muslims into the country. What the fuck is your point?

        2. London has had more terrorist incidents from Catholics than from Muslims. Just saying. And yes, there was a time when people like you would have screamed to keep those damned red haired Catholics out.

          1. London has had more terrorist incidents from Catholics than from Muslims. Just saying

            Sure. And those terror incidents were related to one conflict and they ended when that conflict was resolved. And the answer to the Catholics was to either leave Northern Ireland or somehow resolve the conflict, which they did. So, how exactly do you plan to resolve the conflict with the Muslims?

            Beyond that, you are just making my point. It is apparently non Muslim Britain’s duty to die so that Muslims may live in peace.

            1. It is apparently non Muslim Britain’s duty to die so that Muslims may live in peace.

              How do you figure? Most Muslims in Britain were going to live in peace anyway. And this asshole certainly died in violence. What you say only makes sense if removing Muslims from Britain was a practical possibility. Which it is not.

              It’s fair to argue against encouraging or allowing more poor and refugee Muslims to immigrate. But not to claim that terrorism is all because of current policy (and I don’t mean including the reforms of the 60s).

              1. What you say only makes sense if removing Muslims from Britain was a practical possibility. Which it is not.

                It is very practical. They could do it if they wanted to. The choice is either kick every single one of them out or live with this. No one ever said life had to be easy.

          2. Especially if you look back on the last 600 years- In the last 20 yrs, not so much.

            Damn, now I have to go kill all those Frenchies and Brits that killed my great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandparents.

            And it’s Okay! Because “just saying”…

  3. The Maryland House of Delegates just passed a bill that would quadruple the amount of beer that breweries are permitted to sell in their taproom.

    So the good news is the chocolate rations have been increased by 50%?

    I feel like there are these libertarian good-news goalposts that are getting further and further away.

    1. Now the bad news: Those brewers will have to try to squeeze those sales into less time, because the bill would also require them to stop serving by 9 on weeknights and by 10 on Fridays and Saturdays.

      No, this is the good news, because it helps remind us that the state is still fully in control.

      1. 10 o’clock on weekends! Seriously?!

        1. You get a good buzz on and then the taproom closes and you have to head on over to the state-approved crony bar where you’re freer with your money and not as likely to notice the booze is watered down. The taxi companies love that idea almost as much as the traffic cops sitting outside the taproom at 10.

        2. not weekends. Just Saturday.

          #fuckingmd

  4. State liquor laws are the worst part of federalism. They’re no longer just a reflective of community values, but are a means of servicing rent seekers and those moneyed interests specifically favored by legislators and their political parties.

    1. I knew Texas’ scheme was bad (though apparently not as bad as some!) – then I went to the TABC’s license and permit description page. Just…wow.

  5. You know who else enforced beer laws?

    1. Hammurabi?

    2. Someone who wouldn’t putsch up with this?

    3. Where are “blue laws” still most common?

  6. This is a rather curious story. I’ve always been told by folks like Tony that if you want to help out the little guy, elect Democrats. Yet here they are, pissing all over the little guy. How does this fit the narrative, I wonder?

    1. Not little enough. As soon as you own a business, you are an evil capitalist pig and should have hired better lobbyists.

    2. It’s the rule of opposite effect. If you think the NDP or Liberals or Democrats are there to help you it’s in fact the opposite.

      I always tell fellow business people to NEVER vote for those. And then they tell me, ‘well, that limits our choices!’ To which I reply, it’s already limited since more often than not those parties actually work against you. So yes, though by no means perfect, conservative (and hopefully increasingly libertarians) are the ONLY choice for us.

  7. Fun fact: “The Taproom” was my nickname in college.

    1. The Bad Beer Bill was mine.

  8. Guinness brewery coming soon to Baltimore County

    I believe they are going to be making American beers, not the Stout, while it is great they are investing in old buildings in Baltimore, I think gross they are making gross American beers.

  9. This beer related thread isn’t nearly contentious enough. I’ll see if I can repair that:

    If you don’t like IPAs, you don’t deserve to live among decent people.

    1. FUCK YOU, YOU FUCKING FUCK.

      1. Only if you are one of the girls flanking the grinning idiot in Shackford’s awful GIF.

    2. Do 9/10 beers have to be IPAs?

      1. They don’t have to be and they are, in fact, not.

        I’m sorry if you feel persecuted by the styles of beer that people choose to make. But people do actually like them. It’s not just to annoy you.

        1. You seem super upset.

    3. Bourbon barrel aged stouts. IPA’s are okay… with certain foods… on a hot day.

      1. Except for strongly fruity things and “pumpkin spice” type bullshit, I really have no problem with any style of beer. But I do have a particular affinity for good IPAs. It is true that some brewers use excessive hops to cover up flaws in their beer, but I don’t think you can tar a whole style of beer for their inadequacies.

    4. If you choose to drink the piss of genuine alcoholics, can you call yourself a man?

  10. //NotMyBrewery

  11. The desires of society remain suspended and trapped under the spiral-knotted braid of state and corporate interests.

    Fucking hops will never escape the convoluted interweaving of suited animals molesting the tethered and tending for foul gain.

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