Jimmy Carter deserves credit for deregulating the airlines and trucking, but by far his most significant deregulatory effort was . . . craft beer, as we noted here in this video last year (sort of).
But now in the Age of Obama, the dadgum guvmint regulators are back suppressing craft beer brewing once again:
[T]he costs of complying with excessive regulations keep many aspiring brewers from starting businesses. They also affect the decisions young breweries make when deciding how to grow their business. As Steve Hindy, founder of Brooklyn Brewery, recently wrote, “some small brewers refuse to enter certain markets because of the local distributors’ reputation. That’s bad for these businesses, and bad for the economy, but particularly bad for consumers, who would love to try the latest popular craft beers but can’t find them in their state.”
In a Mercatus Center paper released this week, we found that a brewer in Virginia must complete approximately 12 separate regulatory steps before he can sell his beer to consumers. This is comparable to the regulatory barriers faced by entrepreneurs in Venezuela or China, two places notorious for their excessive barriers to entry.
Oh what the heck: why don’t we just go back to full scale Prohibition, so we can have all the beer we want at much lower prices?