Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Barriers To Entry

It seems that Massachusetts is in the midst of it's own Whiskey Rebellion. Cities want to issue more licenses to sell alcohol. Stop n Shop wants to sell wine. We're allowing year round state wide Sunday sales. Even Topsfield is finally moistening up after a dry spell.

I've always said that anyone who wants one should be allowed to open a restaurant and if they legitimately sell food and would otherwise qualify they should be granted a license no matter what. None of this crap of tieing the only available license in town to the tax debt of the previous holder. Let the restaurants compete on food, service, location and price and see who the better chef is. None of this anti-competitive bullshit. A good restaurant should be open because it's a great place, fun and good food. Not because the owner could cough up a hundred grand over the opening costs for a piece of paper.

This goes double for entrepeneurs who live here, grew up here, have family here. All of whom work to build cummunity and pay plenty of taxes already. They deserve the license more then some corporate douchebags from the south with deep pockets from the franchise rights because their chain could get all the licenses they wanted in the state they started the business in.

I knew a restaurant owner who ran a nice place for more then 30 years who committed suicide because he lost a chance to get a license directly from the town and couldn't afford to buy one of the scarce ones on the open market.

The town lost more then the $1000 that they get from the license. It lost a piece of its soul.


Anonymous Daren said...

I agree. The guy Morrissey from Quincy, well, we know whose side he's on: "Such businesses include Legal Sea Foods, which recently purchased a license from Jimmy's Harborside restaurant for its new Legal Test Kitchen in South Boston. If the city rolled out new licenses, potential competitors could move in after spending a tiny fraction of that. 'Don't you think Legal Sea Foods would be a little [angry]?' Morrissey said. 'They played by the rules and what did it get them? $240,000 in start-up costs.' " So we can't change the system because rich people would get upset. Actually, that sentiment explains a lot of stuff you end up blogging about.

Oct 19, 2006, 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Bry said...

There is absolutely no reason to control licenses. Whenever you limit things like that rich people win and the average guy gets fucked over. Capitalism is supposed to be about the best business winning. If you can't get a license you can't even enter the race.

Oct 19, 2006, 2:07:00 PM  
Blogger coffeesnob3 said...

I feel like you are writing about me - and even if you aren't, thanks.
I want me a liquor license - but it will cost as much as my condo, it's absurd. (I guess I should have just started hooking as soon as I got out of culinary school to put aside some real cash.)

Oct 19, 2006, 8:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Adorable Girlfriend said...

AG's philosophy is simple:

There are no "Is" in teamwork, but there are two in martini. Drinks in AG's office will begin at 2 PM promptly.

Seriously, Mitt et al. spend more time on dealing with public health issues and less on where we buy things.

And Dean said "douche". Do you think the wife knows he has a potty mouth?

Oct 20, 2006, 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Dean ASC said...

I'm pretty sure the potty mouth is what Lisa married me for.

Oct 20, 2006, 7:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Marty said...

It is amazing how sometimes what you write hits home. I have nothing to do with the restaurant industry but still growning up in the same town we see the rich come in and buy licenses. Atleast allow people to bring their own alcohol like some states allow restuarants to do. That way you could compete.

Oct 22, 2006, 8:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Adorable Girlfriend said...

I think you can bet your ass that is not the reason she married you, Dean-o.

I voted via absentee last night. (I'll be in Texas for work). You should blog about all four questions: my favorite is #4 regarding Congress ending the war. That's right, CONGRESS ending the war. I couldn't get much info on the childcare question. Neither side has a website linked to the state ballot website.

Oct 23, 2006, 11:03:00 AM  
Anonymous lisajsc said...

I married Dean for reasons other than his potty mouth. Although his potty mouth is an attractive feature. I must confess that I have an equal if not worst potty mouth than he. Get me going and I can make a trucker blush. Oh #@&*! I have to go now.

Oct 23, 2006, 2:13:00 PM  

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