17-May-2009 (Sun) Wherein the ABC assault gets some television air time.

The ABC fight has made it to television! Tonight local TV station NBC11 aired a 4 minute piece on ABC's assault on the local live music venues with some great quotes from John Hinman, Ramona Downey of Bottom of the Hill, Senator Leno and Terrance Alan of the Entertainment Commission. As has become traditional in such reporting, there was no mention of DNA Lounge at all, but at least ABC comes out looking bad.

The video on their web site wouldn't play for me, so I uploaded it to Youtube as well:

You're going to remind all of your friends about our legal defense fund and Facebook group, right?

Contributions have nearly stopped lately, but the legal bills are still piling up...

8 Responses:

  1. Charles Ragan says:

    +1 for the absinthe poster behind John Hinman.

  2. vordark says:

    I've been following all of these legal battles and I think I have a fairly decent ability to "follow the money". But the one thing I just can't wrap my brain around is what is the ABC's incentive to put all of you out of business?

    I can't imagine any agency taking such steps and spending so much time to accomplish something (the closure of all of these venues) without there being some kind of payoff. Am I missing something obvious or what?

    • jwz says:

      You're absolutely right, it makes no financial sense. If they put us out of business, they don't get any more permit fees.

      The only thing that makes sense is that they are simply prohibitionists. This is a culture war in which they are trying to legislate their morality. The people in charge of regulating the alcohol industry wish to destroy the alcohol industry.

      • strspn says:

        I suspect issues of self-esteem or the lack therof and an appetite for power on the part of mid-level regulators are more pertinent than opposition to alcohol.

        Are you pooling resources with the other nightclub owners similarly beseiged?

      • dasht says:

        The only thing that makes sense is that they are simply prohibitionists.

        No, sir, you are making a mistake.

        It makes better sense that they are careerists. It is also possible that some of the players may be prohibitionists, or anti-youth, or anti-multi-culturalism, or anti-gay, etc. The driving thing regardless is careerism.

        You overestimate the importance of the San Francisco clubs just as A.B.C. seems to have underestimated their importance. It's somewhere in between. The collapse of the S.F. clubs will not ding A.B.C. budgets it will either hold them steady or more likely increase them. The *fight* will drag on a long time and help keep some bureaucrat positions within A.B.C. "mission critical" and thus slightly better protected against cut-backs. Any A.B.C. victories - the shuttering of a club or a large penalty collected or new restrictions slapped on - those are good career trophies that help bureaucrats get reclassified (aka promoted) and elected officials more political capital.

        Culturally, A.B.C. may very well be of a prohibitionist mind-set but the proximate cause for these actions is likely careerism. Word of the day: careerism.

        I think there are implications to that but talk to your attorney. I think it is why the attorney for those other clubs got them on the news and got legislators interested.

        Now there is a twist on this careerism and that is the history of San Francisco. I think coming out of the late 50s onward San Francisco is perceived by large swaths of Sacramento as having an intimidating "you must turn the other way" field. It's the city where the rules are (perceived by them) to be least rigorously enforced, in part because of the political power of the San Francisco establishment. That means that during an economic downturn, when the "establishment"'s political capital (and economic capital) is stretched thin - it's revenge time for the careerists.




    • curlyeric says:

      Why presume malice when simple protectionism and greed could be an easier explanation? It could be some sort of "Make-work" enforcement in order to justify a budget. Unscrupulous lawyers are also very good at "make work" activities. Moving to take DNA Lounge's license is completely out of profile for past enforcements, but is virtually guaranteed to produce months of work for everyone in the department for little benefit but their own paychecks.

      Of course ABC may just be a little fiefdom and you have been declared "bad".

  3. badc0ffee says:

    "Potentiality"... one of my favorite words, right up there with "orientate".

  4. Anonymous User says:

    Is the ABC run by Mormons now?

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