Chris Beam explains how lobbyists and corporations are getting around ethics laws and throwing parties for lawmakers here in Denver. I stopped by the Distilled Spirits Council bash that he discusses in his lede. I got there toward the end of the night, when they were running low on cigars, and was told they were all out even as they handed them to people more important than me right before my eyes. Who can blame them, though? As long as government is eager to meddle with their business, the liquor industry would be crazy not to try and buy influence on the legislative process.
If there were no Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, there would almost certainly have been no Distilled Spirits Council party. Wheeler’s First Law: The way to get rid of corruption in high places is to get rid of the high places.