Re: Chester Bankston reasoning for not supporting whiskey production in Hamilton County:
Yes, alcohol causes many of society's problems, but I don't see how a distillery here would increase the problems one iota.
Chattanooga Whiskey is being sold here (along with all other brands) regardless of whether it is made here. We are a wet county you know, Mr. Bankston.
This kind of illogical reasoning scares me coming from an elected official.
Ronnie "Rock" Land
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I completely agree with Mr. Land's response. Having Chattanooga Whiskey made in Chattanooga will bring in jobs, no one can dispute that. People who drink will drink. Those who have a drinking problem will drink their choice of beverage no matter where it is distributed.
Having whiskey made here does not make it free, last time I checked, so I'm not sure why there will be more of a cost to the taxpayer to places like CADAS and Erlanger?
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I don't know Mr. Bankston from Adam's housecat, but I do know we already sell as much whiskey in Hamilton county as anyone would choose to purchase and/or drink. How did we ever let VW come to town? Vehicles kill thousands of people every year and we're just contributing even more to that problem.
I noticed of course, Mr. Bankston has no problem in being in charge of his own pay raises. Of course, he says it's only to make sure he doesn't get a raise when county employees do. Who elects these folks?
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To the previous comments in favor of the distillery, I'll drink to that. It's terrific to have a whiskey with Chattanooga's name on the label. Any imbiber nationwide or maybe worldwide will see it in a liquor store and may be first introduced and seduced into learning more about Chattanooga and just may come visit our fair city with all it else has to offer.
For the small-minded, backward-thinking county commissioners and legislators who oppose this, shame on you. Chattanooga and Hamilton County need all of the business, jobs, positive attention, extra tax income and potential added tourism dollars it can get.
It's just crazy not to say yes to this and help make it succeed right here at home.
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First of all, Chester Bankston, anyone with even a rudimentary community college level understanding of economics knows the 10 jobs that the Chattanooga Whiskey Company proposes to create are just the tip of the iceberg. Factor in the architects that will design the distillery, the building contractors who will construct it, the equipment retailers who will sell the distillery their goods, and even the increased fees collected by EPB for electricity in a what otherwise would be vacant building, and we have a significant amount of money being pumped into the local economy.
And while the Chattanooga Whiskey Company may fall flat on its face in this business endeavor, altering the law to allow distilleries in Hamilton County will open the door for other local entrepreneurs to compete in the marketplace, thus further benefiting the local economy and filling the government's coffers with even more precious tax revenue.
What I find most disturbing about this situation, though, is the apparent abandonment of traditional conservative principles by self-professed Republicans like Bankston, Richard Floyd, and others who see allowing the manufacture of an already legal product within our limits to be the downfall of our society. Apparently we as rational adults are intelligent enough to make our own decisions about our own healthcare and spending our own money, but when it comes to the decision of whether or not to drink whiskey they think us too childish and needing of their protection.
Big kudos to folks like Rep. Vince Dean, Commissioner Larry Henry and others, who respond to this issue with rationality, reason and respect for their constituents rather than with fallacious arguments, paranoia, and ambiguous unprovable statistics. Given the facts, one has to wonder if people like Bankston are more concerned with economic development and serving the community as a whole, or with placating those who wish to establish Southern Bapto-Sharia in our progressive, religiously diverse and business friendly community in an attempt to maintain what power they think they have.
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Mr. Bankston, I am appalled that you can not see all of positives with having Chattanooga Whiskey made in Chattanooga. This has absolutely nothing to do with indigent costs at CADIS or Erlanger. Do you know there are liquor stores and bars all over Hamilton County? Just because the desire is to have this product manufactured in Chattanooga and will have no adverse effect on anyone being treated for alcoholism.
This is about economics, tourism and employment opportunities that you were elected to bring into Hamilton County. The revenue possibilities are endless and could be off the charts with the commissioners' blessings and support.
Remember you were elected to make our county a better place. Prohibition ended in the early 1930s and now it is time to listen to your constituents. I would like to thank County Commission Chairman Larry Henry, Commissioner Greg Beck, Commissioner Warren Mackey, Commissioner Joe Graham and Commissioner Marty Haynes for signing this letter. I am asking Commissioner Fred Skillern, Commissioner Jim Fields, Commissioner Tim Boyd and you Commissioner Chester Bankston please sign this letter to bring Chattanooga Whiskey Company to our city.
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Chattanooga Whiskey - made in Indiana? Doesn't quite feel right.
We've been brewing beer locally for some 20 years. I'm not sure where Mr. Bankston gets his information - but there isn't one thread of evidence indicating the production of this product would lead to a spike in consumption and/or an increase in alcohol related problems. None.
But as "The Great Brain-Dead" always says - "Kid, you can't hide from stupidity - it's everywhere."