Issac Bobin’s Letter, 6 September 1720

As I was going through the blog posts shifting them over to the new platform for the past few months I realized that I’ve had tight waves of writing enthusiastically separated by other phases of, you know, treading water.  If I had a topic to run with, a new database to explore I got at it. But I also skipped over some things. Failed to suck the marrow. I had in my head that I had a stand alone post on Mr. Bobin’s letter above from 1720 but in fact had only written this in one of my posts about the Rutgers brewing dynasty in New York City from the 1640s to the early 1800s:

In a letter dated 6 September 1720 from Isaac Bobin to George Clarke we read:

…As to Albany stale Beer I cant get any in Town, so was obliged to go to Rutgers where I found none Older than Eight Days I was backward in sending such but Riche telling me you wanted Beer for your workmen and did not know what to do without have run the hazard to send two Barrels at £1 16/ the Barrels at 3/ and 6/. Rutgers says it is extraordinary good Beer and yet racking it off into other Barrels would flatten it and make it Drink Dead…

Isaac Bobin was the Private Secretary of Hon. George Clarke, Secretary of the Province of New York. So clearly Rutgers was as good as second to Albany stale for high society… or at least their workers. And in any case – we do not know if it was from Anthony’s brewery or Harman’s.

The Smithsonian has a better copy of the book of Bobin’s letters. What I didn’t get into were the details of the letter itself. Riche. Albany stale Beer. Drink Dead. Just what a whiner Bobin was. Riche? He seems to be the shipper, moving goods from the New York area to wherever the Hon. George Clarke was located. In another letter dated 15 September 1723, Clarke’s taste in fine good – including beer – is evident:

THERE goes now by Riche (upon whom I could not prevail to go sooner) a Barrel of Beef £1. 17f 6d; a Qr Cask of Wine @ £6; twelve pound of hard Soap @ 6£; twelve pd of Chocolat £1. if; two Barrls of Beer; a pd of Bohea Tea @ £ i.; Six qr of writing Paper. Will carryed with him from Mr. Lanes four Bottles of Brandy with a Letter from Mr. Lane.

In another letter dated 17 November 1719, beer and cider are being forwarded. Bobin’s job includes ensuring Clarke and his household has their drinks and treats. It all is very similar to the shipments for the colonial wealthy and well-placed we’ve seen half a century later from New York City to the empire’s Mohawk Valley frontier where Sir William Johnson received from the 1750s to 1770s: his beer from Mr. Lispenard, his imported Taunton ale and Newark cider .

I find the reference to stale in the 1720 letter interesting as it suggests a more sophisticated beer trade that merely making basic beer quickly and getting it out the door. Albany stale beer. Stale distinguishes as much as Albany does. Plus, Bobin compares to the “Albany stale” to the young Rutgers beer and seems to get in a muddle. What will the workers accept? Or is it perhaps that he is concerned what Clarke thinks the workers will accept. I worry about words like stale like I worry about the livers of the young beer communico-constulo class. We need to do better. Stale seems be a useful word in common usage for (exactly) yoinks but Martyn certainly places it, in the context of beer, as in use around the 1720s so Bobin’s usage is fairly current in England even if at the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s thrown around generously in The London and Country Brewer in 1737 and used by Gervase Markham in the 1660s.

Aside from stale-ness, the dead-ness of the beer obviously is about its condition but why raking off is considered is unclear. Was it just at the wrong point in Rutger’s brewing process or was he operating his business by holding it in larger vessels and selling retail to his surrounding market, like the growler trade today? Again, not just any beer will do. In Samuel Child’s 1768 work Every Man His Own Brewer, Or, A Compendium of the English Brewery we see this passage referencing deadening at page 38:

It has been said before, what quantity of hops are requisite to each quarter of malt, and how the same are to be prepared; but here it must be considered that that if the beer is to be sent into a warmer climate in the cask, one third more hopping is absolutely necessary, or the increased heat will awaken the acid spirit of the malt, give it a prevalency over the corrective power of the hop, and ferment it into vinegar: to avoid this superior expence of hopping, the London and Bristol beers are usually drawn off and deadened, and then bottled for exportation; this really answers the purpose one way; but whether counterbalanced by charge of bottling and freight, &c. those who deal in this way can best determine. 

Just bask in that passage for a moment. It’s (i) a contemporary that British beer was prepared for transport to warmer climates and (ii) among a few other techniques, the intentional deadening a beer followed by bottling was a technique used for export. Burton was, after all, brewed for export. As was Taunton for Jamaica’s plantations. The British simply shipped beer everywhere. IPA was not unique. Was there a beer brewed for Hong Kong that we’ve also forgotten about? Dunno. What we do know is that Bobin is saying is that Rutgers warns against a deadened beer for local use. Would he have been deadening beer for export? In 1720s New York City?  We know that porter was shipped out of town later. We know that late in the century shipments of bottled porter were coming in.

Excellent stuff. I need to think about this more. But, like the seven doors of the Romantic poets, suffice it to say that a good record in itself can open up a wonderful opportunity to chase an idea. In an era of such early and falsely confident conclusion drawing, a useful reminder.

Beer Politics, Policy And Civics

As I had modestly mentioned a couple of times over the last few weeks ago, the election of Mr. Trump to the Presidency could lead to a couple sorts of beer nationalism in support of his muddled form of neo-protectionism: an anti-import reactionism and pro-American jingoism. With the report that he will try to convince a free trading Congress to pass a 20% import tax on Mexican-made goods as a way to pay for his useless wall, my first suggestion now seems to be at least be a possibility. It’s a policy. A bit of a weird one* but one that might, however unlikely the chances, become law. Political victory leading to imposition of policy that shifts the civic reality.

On Monday, Brian Roth published a post entitled “Do You Want Politics in Your Beer?” in which he uses his Tweets’n’Graphs methodology to discuss what he described as “a brewery’s political activism” and then posing, a bit cautiously, whether it is good when breweries share their beliefs in this way. This morning, Michael Kiser posted on a rather similar topic in his “Critical Drinking — The Beer Politic.” While it jumbles the function of his site as a consulto-blog and certain hero breweries in their reaction to Trump, he answers Bryan’s question (without acknowledging the prior post) much more enthusiastically and very much in the affirmative – but still like Roth all a bit too brand focused .

Trouble is, fretting about appearances isn’t really about beer and politics, is it? Almost four years ago Craig posted an excellent survey of the connection between brewing and actual politics over the centuries of New York’s history.  In his post “Albany Ale: The Politics of Beer” he describes how seven Albany brewers from the seventeenth to twentieth centuries engaged with political office and partisanship. Even the great John Taylor got involved:

The 19th century would see the election of not one, but two, brewing mayors of Albany. The first was John Taylor in 1848. Taylor owned what was at the time the largest brewery not only in Albany, but in the country, Taylor & Sons. Upon completion of his tenure as mayor, Taylor served on the board of water commissioners, starting in 1850. He and his compatriots were responsible for overseeing the first municipal water system in the city.

You can read the rest but, as you do, think about whether what Roth and Kiser were driving at: the taking of public positions and its effect on reputation. For my money, while they can wrap it in phrases like “the brewery’s decision to focus on its own measure of authenticity” or “[t]his is why so many of us fought for and supported the rise of local breweries” they still both seem to conflate (i) the brewery as a business with a brand and (ii) the brewery owner as a citizen with a full life beyond the beer and also (iii) the taking of actively advancing a position in favour of either the business or as a citizen through political engagement.  These are different things. Forget worrying about what a small segment of your customers think about your brand’s reputation. Any citizen who is also a business owner who doesn’t engage with the implications of being governed is ignoring one of the greatest dangers to that business’s success. And courting disaster.

Isn’t the reaction of customers to brand secondary where a local craft brewery finds its local municipality, for example, spending taxes to attract big craft competition to town or, for another, supporting fracking and putting the community’s water table at risk? Of course it is. Why wouldn’t the sensible brewery owner protest, pound on the Mayor’s office door or even run for an upcoming council election if their business, their interests were being placed at risk? They all should. That’s about getting beyond the, yes, quite important move from complaisance to complaint that I see Roth and Kiser discussing. That move can and, I would argue, should justify – if not demand – not stalling but then moving on to actual politics.

It doesn’t mean you have to go all 1920s Dan O’Connell take over the Albany County Democratic Committee, rig elections and leverage the Hedrick Brewery to be the town’s boss.  But would it kill you to write or call those who represent you in the political realm?  Would it hurt too much to maybe pass on that next bit of indulgent “beer travel” and the tripping haze of new fun bar after new fun bar and, instead, travel to sit in a committee room where a policy you hate and want stopped is being discussed, waiting your turn soberly to put your ideas on the record for the five minutes they give you at the microphone?

Getting political is about waking up, being adult. Doesn’t really matter where your interests or political preferences lay. You think the big craft carpetbagger brewery that received the regional branch plant tax break wasn’t engaged in politics behind the backs of the local brewers? I bet the local craft community wishes it had laid the earlier groundwork that might have seen them receive the funding for expansion instead. Which would have required them being actively political.

*Given it will mean that Americans and not Mexicans will still pay for the wall as additional markup on their import of Mexican goods. His own party’s leaders are already mocking it.

Nationalistic Jingoism And Your Beer

As our neighbours to the south watch the beginning of what I can only consider the death of conservatism by slowly inflicted suicide, it is instructive to note that the role of beer in nationalistic jingoism is something no longer often given its full weight. That clipping to the right is from the 7 September 1810 edition of that most wonderfully named newspaper from Hudson, New York, The Bee, reprinted from the National Intelligencer. The author is arguing that British porter is unwholesome. Common enough claim at the time. It’s the final of a number of arguments made in an essay published under the pen name Juriscola. The man behind the clever tag appears to be Tench Coxe, aka “Mr. Facing Bothways” for his habit of flapping which ever way the wind blows. By 1810, he was pro-tariff and definitely buy American after a career that saw him welcome the British to Philadelphia in 1777 with open arms.

Nationalism is not solely an argument heard from the USA. Pete maps the role of ale and porter in the second British Empire of the Victorian height in his book Hops and Glory at scale, as we have just discussed.  And ten years after Coxe’s essay, a rabble was being roused right here in in what was the Midland District of Upper Canada by brewer Richard Dalton against the importation of those foreign beers from the south. And likely with good cause if the presence of 160 barrels of Albany Ale in 1816 in our small community is evidence enough. Not even an alternate fact, that. Dalton’s argument is pretty specific: stop bringing in foreign barley. Coxe, by comparison, lays it on thicker. Certainly, the argument is made that domestic grain and fruit supports increased domestic manufacturing. And also that domestic production is superior as an expression of American ingenuity. But then he makes a telling argument: the needs of the military.

The most enormous expense of the American revolutionary war and the deepest sufferings of the patriotic army were those produced by the frequent destitution of wine, good distilled spirits and porter. It is therefore of the greatest importance to our possible military operations that we have a quantity of some of these liquors steadily manufactured in our country from our own materials equal at least to ten millions of gallons.

Note: by “possible military operations” he basically means attacking my town.

So, how will this sort of thing manifest itself in these our own confusing times of the vacuum at the top? Will there be a revival of state sanctioned brewing jingoism? Will, as I suggested soon after the election, Corona and other popular imports face backlash as being unAmerican? Or will the odd and newly joint opposition of the left and free traders take up the slack and prop up sales in defiance?  A new 35% tariff might make those modest brands tough to choose from the grocery shelf even for the idealist.

But will people – err, The People – buy into such protectionism given it is essentially a claim to marketplace weakness, a message of failure? Can such alternate truths gain a foothold?  Depends on the presentation, I suppose.

#23 – The Kid’s Up

“He’s up by seven,” he shouted to the kitchen through his mouthful of toast, the autumn morning light glinting on the plate and mug on the side table.

“Ketchup and what?”

“No – he’s up by seven! The kid is up by seven points with Nanos, Ekos and all the other Greek gods!!!”

“That’s nice.”

Nice? What’s that supposed to mean. The Governing Party is back on track, at the front steps of kicking the dullards out and all she can muster up is “nice“? He rubbed his chin. Thought for a bit. The Kid’s made a big move in the last few weeks. The commies have faded back just enough to provide the necessary support. Another sip of coffee. A leaf fell outside the bay window. Been a long time. Unfold the Globe. Fold it the other way. And all Hap pulls out of his bag of tricks is a stupid cash register clang. Cornered himself. He’s cut so much he has nothing much left to cut to tempt the 905. Thought he was cornering the others. Folks are ready to spend. Could be. Could be they’re just sick of Hap. Hap looks sick of Hap come to think of it. Toast. Chew.

“More coffee?”

“Sure thing. You splash some caff in the decaff today?”

“Not with your heart.”

“Jeese. No kidding? Got a bit of zip going today.”

Shadow Cabinet.

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So Far It’s Been A Poor Election Campaign For Beer

mulcair2015UPDATE TO THE UPDATE!! #TeamPoliPour2015 is coming together very nicely. We have received another link via Twitter to a French-Canadian blog post from 4 September which includes photos of both Harper and Trudeau with beer. Must analyze more closely for evidence of actual pouring as opposed to serving and hoisting. More updates as they come in….

UPDATE!! – NDP leader Mulcair seen today in PEI at a microbrewery to announce tax policy. [Inside scoop: I used to live about 300 yards from the parents of named NDP candidate Herb Dickieson (Egmont) on the road just north of New Glasgow, PEI. Lovely people.] Got a tweet from @salut_galarneau at 7:32 EST to let me know. Money shot. You may have had to wait otherwise for the morning papers…

Earlier: Remember last Canadian federal election? The leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition was caught on camera proudly pouring a beer. And our Prime Minister was seen awkwardly pouring a beer on his way to his first majority government. Our conservatives like beer. Our centre left appear to want to expand access to beer – though their generosity is somewhat limited. Generally speaking beer is generally not a matter of general public debate. We like beer. It’s like hockey without the ice to us.

So, what has gone wrong so far this time around? Why have I not been bombarded with candidates in tavern scenes or folks who just want to be seen to be Johnny Average Canuck uncomfortably holding a case of some beer upside down? Don’t get me wrong. Normal folk from average backgrounds who have made good have been the norm as far as our national leadership goes. And that sort of dull is frankly better than the alternative. But, still, why is the only image so far this one tweeted from a campaign flight showing NDP leader Tom Mulcair holding a Dos Equis? I sure hope the federal level has not taken the message from the most recent provincial election in Canada’s biggest province when not talking about beer was key to the winning campaign.

And why Dos Equis? Who decided to put that on the campaign plane at all? Well, at least he’s been seen with a brew. Time for macro and micro, craft and kraphtt to demand the nation’s leaders kow-tow to a tavern table of Canadians, insist they show the electorate they drink what the common folk drink. Hey – I know a thing or two… and have a few pals in or near the war rooms. Send me a line. Campaign beer theory is not something for the amateurs. Which makes me comfortable charging a fee. You need help. I can help: beerblog@gmail.99

#22 – Halfway Home

The new Nanos numbers this morning were not good. Another small slide. When he had called a friend’s office later he hadn’t been in yet. The voice on the phone had used the words “death march” even with weeks to go. Weeks to go this time could mean weeks to go of this. Or, worse, an “anyone but the NDP” move to the Grits leaving us in the wilderness. Again. It had stung hard to have to listen to Elsie Wayne so often.

Limited upside. Great. And the boss let the message out that he’s not perfect. What an interview with Joe Rockhead the other night! I am who I am and that’s who I am. People want a Syrian grannie in every church… for God’s sake. Somewhere they know they can drop off Timbits or a casserole or a blanket or something to feel good about themselves. Why is that too much to ask?

239 Years Ago There Was This Tavern And These…


1775tavern1

“Settling the Affairs of the Nation”… that is what it’s called. After yesterday’s 1919 barroom scene from New York City, I was looking for an earlier characteristic tavern scene. Sadly, photography did not exist in 1775 so this print will have to do. Click for a bigger image. The first thing that caught my eye was the architecture with that serving stall in the corner. Late 1790s and early 1800s Ontario taverns were build with that sort of structure according to In Mixed Company by Julia Roberts. There are a few interesting commentaries on this image.

The British Museum dates it at 1784 describes the copy of the print above in fairly technical terms:

Interior of a tavern, where four men are sitting in the left foreground, one carrying a basket on his back, listening to a soldier who stands with his back to the hearth, one hand raised as he talks, while a woman pours out a glass behind a counter on the right; shelves with plates, a pot over the stove, a gun by the counter, leaves tucked into the panes of the window, bird-cage and branch of foliage hanging from the ceiling, a print of Pine’s portrait of John Wilkes above the door, and two tubs of vegetables on the flagged floor in the foreground.

1775tavern2The blog The Still Room provided an alternative version of the image – which is under that thumbnail to the right. Another male figure is added to the right:

There are a lot of fun things to explore in this print sold by Bowles & Carver in London. I’m enjoying the tavern maid’s cap, the spitjack (which rotated roasting meats over the fire, the standing man’s pack basket, the sprigs in the tavern windows (anyone know the purpose? and the branch hanging from the ceiling next to the bird cage?), the vegetables in the bucket and tub on the floor, and so forth.

The blog Hiddendirk dates it at 1775 and explains the purpose in this way: “Notice the mistletoe hanging from the ceiling, the wreaths on the door and the evergreen cuttings in the windowpanes. It is a Christmas scene. The image discussed is again the one with the extra man to the right. Even bigger version here. Still more on the Christmas theme of the image at this Colonial Williamsburg webpage.

The thing I noticed first is the man sitting nearest the center is drinking a quart. Not sure how he can be wrapped up in a coat when he is about sitting six feet away from about 300 pounds of blazing charcoal. The first does look a little over stoked. The officer with the roasting buttocks is holding court. All eye’s are upon him. The version with the man by the door is finer. The sign above the door and at the drinks stall are legible. The latter says “Punch in Large Quantities”. Does the other read “Heart’s Ease”? There is a cask labeled “GIN” on the counter behind the server. There is no cask in the British Museum version and tankards are hanging from the shelves.

The painting above the door is described as being a portrait of John Wilkes the member of the British Parliament who was a radical and supporter of the American Revolution. The soldier is facing it as he expounds. I like the way the gun is resting by itself in the corner. There are a few messages about plenty. Is the message that the authority of the soldier is out of place? Or is he back from the wars? The pamphet on the table reads “The King’s… [something]”… is it “speech”? The pot is about to boil over. The man attending the fire is asleep as his his dog.

Ontario: All Quiet About Beer On The Election Front

4515OK, so far the Ontario provincial election appears to be playing out as an effort to ensure the same outcome as last time. As a result, even though it is an excellent time to discuss beer buying policy in the province, no one is doing so… yet. Fervent please by bloggers, newspaper columnists, commercial interests which were winding the story up just a few weeks ago have also gone quite quiet. Odd. Can’t be the interim blackout on political advertising. It was not always so. If we consult the book we see that in 1924, when Ontario was fed up with the strictest form of dry law under provincial law beer sales became a widely fought public issue:

Support for temperance was weakening based on the public awareness of the failure of the law and corruption it brought. In October of 1924, when another plebiscite on temperance was held, the vote against repeal had fallen to only 51.5%. Major population centres like Toronto, Ottawa, Hamilton and Windsor all voted against keeping the law. In response, Premier Ferguson raised the strength of permitted light beer to 4.4 proof from 2.5 and also redistributed the seats in the legislature to remove wet seats and add dry ones. Reaction to the new beer was not rabid as one newspaper noted:

To the imbibers who thought that they were going to get some kick out of the potation, the ordination was as disappointing as a cancelled marriage license to an old maid. Many of them claimed, in fact, that the new beverage bore such a family likeness to the old 2 percent that it might be its twin brother. Unlike the stuff that made Milwaukee famous, there was no blinds staggers accumulated from the new suds. Temperance people who thought the wolf was here in sheep’s clothing will have to wait a while.

Not surprisingly, Ferguson won re-election in December, 1926 on the platform of repeal of the temperance law and replacement with a system of government controlled liquor sales.

So, beer retailing can become a winning story even if it does not seem to be doing so now. Either one of two things is happening. Folk are not as motivated in 2014 to pursue the political route to effect beer retailing change as they were ninety years ago in 1924… or politicians have not had the interests of the public effectively brought to their attention as a vote getter. I suspect it is the first possibility as there has been plenty in the news. It’s just that the story has not been made compelling enough yet to actual inspire real action, to move people to switch habits at the ballot box.

The strangest thing, however, is how like Premier Ferguson in the early 1920’s any of the three main political parties could themselves use it to justify getting votes if they just framed it as an illustration of their core values. Sure, the Tories under Tim Hudak have supported corner store sales but only tepidly so despite it being a tale of small business and personal freedoms. Beer as the drink of the working class sure could be again framed as a boon to the left, the union made drink of the little guy and the NDP – but so far the party is only “open to new ideas.” The Grits under Premier Wynne have sided with the no vote so deeply that it might be tough to now shift, preferring to take the “we control stuff so you don’t have to” route. Gridlock.

What is needed is a compelling new angle for one of these parties to latch on to as a way to present itself as mirroring a compelling positive public need back to the public. What is it and who gets to it first?

And Steve Is The Crown-In-Parliament, Too

Today’s news speaks to some fairly basic constitutional ideas:

The Harper government said Monday it will not include Governor-General David Johnston in any future policy discussions with First Nations, further clouding its battle of wills with aboriginal leaders. A spokesperson for the Prime Minister said Monday Stephen Harper will meet with Assembly of First Nations’ National Chief Shawn Atleo “in the coming weeks,” and has no plans to abide aboriginal leaders’ demands for a summit Thursday. “[First Nations people] are very insistent on having the Governor-General there, but the Governor-General says this is a policy matter with the government and that [he] shouldn’t be there,” Andrew MacDougall said. “We agree with that.”

This is interesting stuff. What is a Prime Minister and what is a Governor-General? In his book Federalism and the Constitution of Canada, David E. Smith uses the proper name of one institution the Prime Minister leads: the Crown-in-Parliament. Even though the Glorious Revolution of 1688 changed a lot of the constitutional principles it did not great autonomous spheres of power so much as rearrange the existing ones. As a result, Smith can write:

Sovereignty in a constitutional monarchy rests in the Crown-in-Parliament (or, legislature), except where the subject is the reserve powers (dissolution of Parliament, for instance) that remain as a matter of prerogative in the hands of the Crown’s representative.

So, unless the topic is one reserved to the G.-G., it is a matter of Parliamentary oversight. In section 91 of our Constitution of 1867, part of the division of powers discussion it states “the exclusive Legislative Authority of the Parliament of Canada extends to all Matters coming within the Classes of Subjects next hereinafter enumerated; that is to say,” and then lists a number of topics. It is generally taken that the list serves to distinguish between the Federal level and the Provincial one but the assignment of the classes of subjects is to the Parliament of Canada. Item number 24 in the list is “Indians, and Lands reserved for the Indians.” Later in the constitution it states under the heading “Treaty Obligations” that:

The Parliament and Government of Canada shall have all Powers necessary or proper for performing the Obligations of Canada or of any Province thereof, as Part of the British Empire, towards Foreign Countries, arising under Treaties between the Empire and such Foreign Countries.

Interestingly, as Smith points out in his book, this only means that the Feds have the power to conclude treaties not to implement them. Where the subject matter is not in the list of subject matters assigned to the Federal Parliament, it is up to the Provinces to implement. And, in any event, the power relates to foreign countries. What was the nature of the “in Empire” domestic treaty that the British and then Canada happily signed from East to West as European Canada asserted itself? Mr. Harper is asserting that whatever it is, it is something that section 91(24) assigns to Parliament and he is the head of Parliament. Clearly an argument available to be made. Because he, like the G.-G. represents the Crown in his own way, too.

Election 2012: While I Still Have The Power To Blog….

I better make some comment on this election, make some statement given the history around here even if the digital world has deemed blogs to commentary what 8-tracks are to fine audio media.

I was over in the states yesterday and found an active economy. My favorite lunch spot, the Fairgrounds Inn where I have been going for at least six years now was hopping on a Friday lunch. I had the Italian Combo, thanks for asking. And I got my hair cut. The guy getting sheered next to me went on about the Biden debate. Unhappy but a bit shallow. Was there really cause to gripe? Businesses were expanding. On the way out of town, my rear passenger side wheel just about seized and we were lucky to come over the hill on #37 and see Frenchy’s Auto Repair right there. An hour was all it took to get a part delivered and see us back heading to the border. We lapped up the warm late late summer air on a gorgeous rural vista out back of the repair ship. Everyone in the place was happy and busy and working. Some were having a beer. One of my favorite things about the slice of the USA I get to see is how it is both so similar to the Maritimes as a bit of a hard luck corner of the nation but also how frankly cheerful and confident folk are. The restaurant was at a dull roar of conversation the whole time we were there. It was hard to tell if the auto repair was a place of work or a fairly hearty social club given all the people coming and going while we were there.

What will America do on 6 November? My take is that Obama has not been passed, the Federal Senate will not budge and a number of member of the House will move to the left, not the right. There will not be a throw the bums out movement. I don’t think Mitt Romney would be a catastrophe any more than four more years would. No wave of nuttin’. But the next four years one way or another will be about managing recovery. Whammo. Not sure the will be a WHAMMO!!! but there will be a Whammo.

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