Now typically when Guinness calls I listen. Need me to participate in the World's Largest Toast on Saint Patty's Day? I'm your man. Having a little Guinness Tasting Event in Georgetown for the discerning stout drinker? Sign me up. Any bar that doesn't serve Guinness is a bar I go to exactly once.
What can I say? I'm a stout guy, but more then that I am Guinness Guy. That creamy black elixir working to make the world a better place one delicious pint at a time.
And then the other day, I get an email with the subject line GUINNESS NEEDS YOUR HELP!
Holy cow!! Maybe there is some kind of factory over-run and they need people to help drink the surplus? Oooh! An ocean tanker bringing in 150 gross tons of the magical brew from Ireland is stranded in rough seas and after they offload the priceless cargo they are going to need people to help them store it? Are you kidding? I have an entire extra bedroom in my condo. I'll take 80 cases! This is going to be great!!!
The I open it to find this:
As someone who enjoys great brands such as Smirnoff, Crown Royal, Captain Morgan, Johnnie Walker, Ketel One, Jose Cuervo, Tanqueray, Guinness, Beaulieu Vineyard or Sterling Vineyards wines, you are a member of the Diageo family. As a member of our family, you need to be aware that in the coming months, lawmakers will be proposing tax increases that will put jobs in your community at risk and raise the cost of your favorite drink.
There's a real price to pay when elected officials misguidedly try to replenish state budgets with regressive taxes that will hit us at a time when we are already being hit hard enough economically. These taxes will cause people like bartenders, waiters, waitresses and other folks who work hard every day in our community restaurants and hotels to lose their jobs. In fact, the last time they raised taxes on alcohol, $1.3 billion in wages were lost, while 98,000 people found themselves out of work.
Hardly sounds fair, does it?
It's time to SAY NO to higher taxes that will put jobs at risk and raise prices on the people who can afford it the least. CLICK HERE to join the fight against irresponsible and regressive taxes.
Together, we can protect our jobs, our livelihoods, and the right to responsibly enjoy a drink.
Guy L. Smith
Executive Vice President
Diageo North America
Now wait.. this isn't just Guinness; this is the global conglomerate Diageo PLC, the largest multinational alcohol distributor in the world. This is the company that just had a lil' exeuctive shake-up (Stir-up?) this week when Executive VP Asif Adil quit abruptly and is now subject to an internal probe about ethics and policy violation.
This is the company that is under scrutiny for playing a shell game with its corporate headquarter location in order to evade MILLIONS of dollars in UK taxes
This is also the company that just announced its cutting 4% of its workforce in North America.
But aside from all that mega-corporate global
shananigans trade stuff... this is the company that makes my beloved brew! So I click the link in the email and it takes me to AxeTaxesNotJobs.com and urges me to write my congresspeople to stop this tax hike on alcohol that will cause us to lose $1.3 Billion in wages and 98,000 people to lose their jobs.
$1.3 Billion? 98,000 people out of Guinness-related work? I don't want that!!! Except...
There is nothing on the site that says anything about legislation or tax hikes. There is nothing on the site that explains how taxes, at their current level or any other, will elimate jobs or wages. Nor is there anything on the site that can explain to me how 98,000 people losing their jobs will eliminate $1.3 Billion in wages. Who are these 98,000 people that make $13,265/year in the Alcohol pouring industry. Is that net or gross?
So...since Mr Guy Smith is clearly lacking on the details; is there anyone around here that has a damn clue about what specifically this scare tactic is supposed to get me up in arms about? Is there really an alcohol tax? Is there any data supporting this? Or is this just a dragnet for stimulus opposition using Diageo's customer mailing list?