Thursday, April 25, 2013

Keelhaul the Captain!

Rum sales are through the roof, the rebirth of the Tiki lifestyle and the popularity of pirate theme parks, bars and restaurants is fueling a renewed frenzy for the old grog! But what is in your rum exactly? Which brands can be trusted, not to saturate their alcohol with artificial flavors, colors and preservatives? Unlike food or cosmetics, they don't have to label their ingredients!

We all know Captain Morgan has become high fructose GMO corn syrup flavored ethanol piss water! But did we know he was still looting? Lately, the sole mention of rum tax subsidies will get you banned, blocked, or otherwise unceremoniously dumped from rum lover groups and forums worldwide. No rum politics allowed. And why is that? Because like the stock brokers, bankers and mortgage scammers who came before them, the good folks at Diageo figured out a way to have their cake and eat it too. What else is new?

Seems that for decades, Washington has been taxing all spirits sold in the US, not just rum, no matter where they come from, to the tune of $2 a bottle, kicking back all that cash, somewhere in the billions, to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. Congress does that to stop our commonwealth friends from demanding anything else. They get that booty, they can't lobby, it's been like that for 80 years.

Except today, what's happened, is that fat cat booze megacorps like Diageo have gamed the system to pocket all the loot, producing their cheap crap rum for free, lavish in mansions, yachts and all the tacky luxuries gone-berzerk anti-natural capitalist corruption brings.

The cover over program was originally intended to both spur economic development by increasing rum production - and the $$$  (taxed at $13.50 per proof gallon Federal Excise Tax - FET) are supposed to go to health and welfare initiatives in the US territories. Problem is the territories have a lot of latitude with what they do with the money.

So what happened in the USVI is Diageo added a small amount of jobs to the population and the USVI bartered with $$$ they would never have had if Diageo had not moved from Puerto Rico. They used the projected $$$ back from the US to help build the new plant, etc -- even if the net jobs are small and the net $$$ left over after hooking up Diageo are small, still it's a net positive for USVI no matter how much it costs the US treasury. The law was already written. Diageo and USVI just drove a truck through it. Our legislators are to blame.

In the past, Puerto Rico used the money for the "Rums of Puerto Rico" campaign, a division of the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company (PRIDCO). It was reasonable. Then the islands started playing against each other till you get to the Diageo deal which is the largest; Bacardi also has a deal with Puerto Rico, Jim Beam (Cruzan rum) has a deal with USVI.

Who is hurt most by this? Independent small family-owned US rum producers of course, and every other island in the Caribbeans, South America, etc... which are allowing American consumers to subsidize their own cut-throat competition.

The Dominican Republic has filed a formal request for an “opinion” by the WTO, necessary precursor to a formal complaint charging the United States and the US Virgin Islands especially in what CARICOM believes are four serious violations of the WTO’s rules regarding fair trade.

What can we do about it over here? Well, there's a Save Caribbean Rum online petition circulating, a rising flood of articles you can google, and because we in Fairfield County are blessed with the US Diageo offices in Norwalk, street protest?

Signs we need!

Keelhaul the Captain!
Stop! Captain’s Hijack of US Dollars
Captain Morgan: taking US Dollars to Destroy US Distillers
Mutiny Morgan! Stop British Looting of US Dollars
Stop the Looting! Hang the Captain!
No more Ransom to the Captain
Stop the Morgan madness
No more US taxes to the Brits!
Reward: Captain Morgan, Looter of US Treasure
Diageo Tax Kickbacks Unfair to Small Rum Producers
Diageo Tax Kickbacks Unfair to Puerto Rico
Captain Morgan Predatory Towards Family Owned Distillers
Save Caribbean Rum
Stop Foreign Subsidies
No US $$$ to British Diageo
No Dollars to Diageo
Dump Diageo’s Devil Rum
Diageo Tax Kickbacks Unfair to Small Rum Producers
Diageo Tax Kickbacks Unfair to Puerto Rico
Captain Morgan Predatory Towards Family Owned Distillers

Read what good deeds 80 local Diageo employees did for Earth Day in the Norwalk Hour newspaper. So why can't the company understand the environmental and social damage their greedy corporate policies are wrecking on the international rum community?

Captain Morgan & The Morganettes

This is what happens to you below on rum groups and forums if you ask too many questions about the rum tax!

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