Skip to content

Suffragettes, Booze and the Income Tax

2010/12/01

You wouldn’t know it growing up in the rural “dry” county that I did, but America’s not so distant history is soaked in booze.  Soaked, I tell you.  This column came out some months back, but it’s one of my all time favorites from Mr. Will.  Rediscover the origins of plea bargaining, NASCAR, Las Vegas, the federal income tax, and large-scale American organized crime.  And probably why oil paintings of the Founding Fathers invariably portray rosy cheeks.

And this is pretty much all the suffragettes’ fault.  You heard me.

An excerpt:

John Adams’s morning eye-opener was a tankard of hard cider; James Madison drank a pint of whiskey daily; by 1830, adult per capita consumption was the equivalent of 90 bottles of 80-proof liquor annually. (emphasis mine)

To my mind, it’s one of the most fascinating connect-the-dots, social-to-political progressions in American history.  Looking back, it should have been easy to see how the dominoes would fall.  But that didn’t stop it from happening anyway.

George Will:  Another Round of Prohibition, Anyone?

Advertisements
No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: