Beer and Pavement

Why Liberals Never Win

Posted in Beer, Intersections, Mikkeller by SM on August 10, 2012

This went down.

One craft brewer beating up on a handful of niche craft brewers who in-turn beat back on the first craft brewer. Aren’t they all supposed to be on the same team?

It’s silly, really. Craft brewers own 5-10% of the beer market in the US. Why bash each other because one segment goes about their business differently than you? Wy not focus all your effort on the big boys?

For all their faults, this is something BrewDog does, but they are a minority. The Scottish craft brewers are in it just to take on the big boys. They feel no need to attack their own. Instead, they promote kindred spirits, even collaborating from time to time. When it comes to taking on a common enemy, craft brewers either turn on each other or turn a blind eye toward their macro adversaries.

In music, the same doesn’t typically happen. Although, sometimes, there are beefs, particularly if Wayne Coyne is involved. Still, indie rockers generally leave each other alone. It’s the fans and bloggers that like to tear down their own. Debates over how indie a band is or isn’t or whether or not a band is indie enough dominate conversation. Instead of celebrating indie rock, we make it a pissing contest where those who piss the shortest distance win.

This is why liberals never win.

The more thoughtful, critical side of the political spectrum constantly beats itself up over nuance, subtlety, and semantics. Liberals do more harm to one another than conservatives who tend to toe the party line. Liberals are constantly redefining what being liberal means while conservatives are set up to just do things as they’ve always been done.

Of course, there are exceptions. There always are. However, time and time again, I find the internal battles among liberals, the craft beer community, and indie rock to be frustrating. I mean, I love and identify with these communities because of their critical, reflective natures, but sometimes they do more harm than good.

Thoughts? Am I overreacting? Does this happen on the same levels among conservatives, macro brewers, or major labels? Discuss.

*Then, there’s this. Really? Who cares?

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5 Responses

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  1. ithinkaboutbeer said, on August 10, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    I think the Tea Party has definitely thrown a wrench in the typical Republican lock step.

  2. Bill Farr said, on August 12, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    I think you’re over-reacting! Sisson used a term incorrectly, folks who (correctly) fit the term called him on it, he apologized and clarified. Also, I think “taking on the big boys” isn’t what craft brewers are doing — they’re trying to sell all they make, hope to be able to make more, and then sell that. Much like the corner bakery isn’t competing with Pepperidge Farm, or the corner bistro isn’t competing with Appleby’s. You might have an argument with Boston Beer vs. the imported big boys, and breweries on the size of New Belgium and Sierra Nevada and Lagunitas are getting to the point where they’re competing with each other, but smaller than that? They’re just trying to sell their 4,000 barrels and maybe have visions of growing when they can add capacity. Sisson foresees losing tap handles and accounts to newer breweries, but also sees a lot of them going down — but he (and we) know it hasn’t gotten to that point yet.

    • Zac said, on August 13, 2012 at 12:01 pm

      I may be overreacting to Sisson’s point, but I think there’s a lot of unnecessary in-fighting among the craft beer producers and consumers. That’s what happens when so many people care so much about quality.

      I do think most craft brewers got into beer as a way to counter what’s offered by macro beer producers. And they are in competition. People have been leaving homegrown craft industries for years in favor of cheap, industrialized knock-offs.

      Honestly, I’m not that fired up about this. I just needed to post something.

  3. Steve said, on August 13, 2012 at 4:22 am

    “In music, the same doesn’t typically happen.” Does Steve Malkmus versus Billy Corgan count? Or was Billy one of the big boys?

    • Zac said, on August 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm

      Ah, you’re right and there’s many other examples beyond that. How could I have overlooked this?


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