By Richard McGowan
This is the third book in what the author calls his "sin" trilogy: the gambling, tobacco, and alcohol industries. Similar to the gambling and tobacco industries, the alcohol industry is one in which the business and public policy processes are intimately linked. Furthermore, it is a highly regulated industry whose very existence depends upon the will of government at all levels and branches. What all the industries share is that they are viewed as a painless source of revenue for government. The alcohol industry is composed of three segments, namely beer, distilled spirits, and wine, each with a distinct product and market. Since the end of Prohibition, public policy makers have developed a certain "tolerance" for alcohol products, but they continue to grapple with the question of how to deal with the "alcohol" problem. While the author updates the current structure and strategies of competition among these industries, his primary rationale for doing so is to analyze how these industries react toincreased public scrutiny of their business activities. The other unique feature of this book is its emphasis on how public policy measures affect the sale of beer, distilled spirits, and wine at the state level.
- Westport, CT