A close look at Hensley shows that the company has opposed changes that critics of the beer industry say were intended to help Americans drink responsibly.Already causing problems, if he has to recuse himself from law-making. And may cause problems w/ the "clinging to guns & gawd" base, as well.
McCain has avoided problems in the Senate by recusing himself on alcohol issues, according to executives at the Distilled Spirits Council, the liquor industry's trade association."Sen. McCain has been very, very fair to this industry," said Frank Coleman, senior vice president for the council. "He stays an arm's length away from issues that benefit the family business."
For some, abstinence -- and a disdain for the industry -- is religion-based. Leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention, which has more than 16 million members, expressed "total opposition to the manufacturing, advertising, distributing and consuming of alcoholic beverages" in the church's most recent resolution on the matter."Damn, those suckers have some nerve, don't they? After they get prohibition restored, will they put an end to high school dances? (Many Babtiss are opposed to dancing as well. It's horizontal fucking, you know.)
I am sure for some individual Southern Baptists, [the McCain family's involvement in the beer business] would be a concern," said Roger S. Oldham, vice president of Southern Baptist Convention relations.
Cindy McCain holds the title of company chairwoman and controls about 68% of the privately held company stock with her children and the senator's son, according to records at the Arizona Department of Liquor License and Control. Cindy and John McCain keep their finances separate, and he has no stake or role in Hensley.And yet one of his sons by Carol, the wife he dumped for Cinderella, has some company stock, and
Its executives, including John McCain's son Andrew, have written at least 10 letters in recent years to the Treasury Department, have contributed tens of thousands of dollars to a beer industry political action committee, and hold a seat on the board of the politically powerful National Beer Wholesalers Assn.Between Andrew (Couldn't he go into the Navy too? Did he decide to take the easy way out & go into stepmom's business?) & campaign flights on the Hensley & Co. corporate plane, we're not certain that "has no stake...in Hensley" is fully accurate.
Certainly wouldn't want to "confuse" the consumers w/ information, would we? On the other hand, the sweeter the something, & so on.
The company has opposed such groups as Mothers Against Drunk Driving in fighting proposed federal rules requiring alcohol content information on every package of beer, wine and liquor.
Hensley has run afoul of health advocacy groups that have tried to rein in appeals to young drinkers. For example, the company distributes caffeinated alcoholic drinks that public health groups say put young and underage consumers at risk by disguising the effects of intoxication.
Public interest groups have petitioned the Treasury Department in recent years to require that every container of beer, wine or liquor carry a label disclosing the amount of alcohol in one standard serving.
The Center for Science in the Public Interest, the Marin Institute, the Consumer Federation of America and Mothers Against Drunk Driving, among others, assert that such information would help Americans drink responsibly and avoid drunk driving. The label would also contain nutrition information such as calories.
But the beer industry has argued that such labels would confuse consumers. With backing from Hensley and others, it has persuaded the Treasury Department to withdraw the alcohol content disclosure from any future label requirement.
Aside from the labeling issue, Hensley has begun distributing controversial products known as flavored malt beverages, which critics call "alcopops" because of their similarity to soda pop.Drink up, kids. Nothing that sweet could hurt you.
The beer industry, including Hensley, tried unsuccessfully to block liquor makers from getting into the market for the drinks.
Critics say the product is directed mainly at youth and can leave them wide awake without knowing they are intoxicated. Other flavored malt beverages contain sweet fruit flavors that block the taste of alcohol."
These products are starter beverages, intended to introduce consumers to alcohol and alcohol brands," said George Hacker, director of the Alcohol Policies Project at the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
"Blind" trust? Not very "blind" if the McC.s know what's in it. This whole thing is as horrid as Dianne Feinstein's husband, the zillionaire "real estate developer." Gender equality, in a way. Political spouses of both genders & both sides of the aisle are now running things & influencing the politician in the family. What the hell does spineless Speaker Pelosi's other half make money at, by the way?
If her husband is elected president and she retains her role at Hensley, she will set a precedent for outside corporate activity by a first lady.
The McCain campaign issued a statement Friday about the issue, saying that "any decisions going forward will be made when John McCain wins the election and takes office, and not before." Hensley executives declined to comment.
Political analysts said they were astounded that the presumptive Republican nominee had not already addressed the issue.
"You can't run a beer company out of the White House," said Samuel L. Popkin, a political science professor at UC San Diego. "You can't run any company from the White House. McCain is leaving a live hand grenade on the table, a major embarrassment."
Charles A. Hurley, chief executive of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, said his organization would be watching carefully if a future McCain administration exercised influence on any alcohol issues."
I believe she would have to put that stuff in a blind trust of some kind," Hurley said, "where she would not be involved."
Other experts, however, question whether a blind trust would go far enough to insulate a McCain administration, since the ownership would still benefit the family.