America is cheap
Several Hoboken411 readers wrote in suggesting that the potential sale of Anheuser-Busch to Belgian-based InBev would be a good topic for discussion.
How do you feel about the foreign takeover of many U.S. companies?
Also, if you want to sign the “petition,” then head over to http://www.saveab.com and add to the list, which is 54,000 strong.
From the NY Times:
This Bud’s for the Candidates
When I heard the news last week that the Belgian company InBev wanted to buy Anheuser-Busch, I immediately called my bartender. From France.
“Who’ll save Budweiser?” I wanted to know. “McCain or Obama?”
“I haven’t heard either one give a position on that,” Moe said, a little groggily. It was, after all, still morning in Kansas City, Mo. “Besides, you drink High Life.”
“Moe, wake up!” I ranted. “It’s my right to hate Budweiser because it’s from St. Louis, not Belgium. Plus, I actually like the beer. I’ve probably downed more Bud than any other single fluid in my life.”
Moe responded to this claim with a concerned, professional silence.
“Besides water,” I added, quickly.
Like Moe, I and my fellow Missourians have spent the spring in a deep political slumber. Our primary, way back in February, was exciting. In retrospect, it seems that if Barack Obama hadn’t squeaked out a late-night, 1.4 percentage point victory in Missouri, he might not be the nominee. But since then, neither he nor John McCain has managed to find an issue, or even a jingle, that sticks.
No More No Child Left Behind? Universal Health Care for Almost Everybody? Stop the War Next Century? None of these have much of a ring.
CONTINUE READING THE REST AFTER THE JUMP…
(Save Bud, continued…)
Even the war protesters who picket along my jogging route in Kansas City seemed to lose steam, their numbers dwindling into single digits, their signs — No Blood for Oil! — weathered and aged.
Strange as it sounds, this Budweiser story may liven us up. Sure, Colorado’s Coors and Milwaukee’s Miller were swallowed up by foreign companies. But we’re talking the King of Beers here. The Bud Bowl. The Clydesdales. The Cardinals. And that classic jingle: “When you say Budweiser, you’ve said it all.”
Now, suddenly, it seems as if InBev can buy it all — and end Anheuser-Busch’s 148 years of independence — for a measly 43 euros or so a share. Of course, with the dollar near historic lows, those measly euros are worth about $65. This simple bit of math has crystallized the meaning of a year’s worth of cable news graphics: the “Week in War,” the “Housing Bubble,” the “Credit Crunch,” the “Oil Crisis” and the “Dollar’s Slide.” The result? America’s cheap.
My brief visit to France — where my wife, a French professor, is leading a student study-abroad program — made this abundantly clear. Want a Coke at a cafe? That’s $4.50. Four slices of ham? $5. Pair of Chuck Taylor high tops? Try $90.
Missourians may not care about the price of tennis shoes in France. But they do care about beer. So when the candidates focus on Missouri in the fall, we might be asking Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama some new questions. Like how they intend to strengthen the dollar. Or where Spuds MacKenzie went.
According to the stock analysts quoted in The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Anheuser-Busch will likely be European-owned by then. “The deal was predictable,” one said. “They were ripe.”
To a beer drinker, that word “ripe” sounds a lot like skunked, no pleasant association for the inventor of the “born on date.” Still, talking to Moe made me thirsty, so I headed for the nearest brasserie and plunked down $7.50 for a Miller, no Bud available. Then, gingerly, with my wife’s help, I hung some new lyrics on an old, happy tune:
Quand tu dis Bud-wei-ser, tu a dit InBev.
Now there’s a jingle that Missouri voters won’t soon forget.