Takin it to the Streets

THE CONFRONTATION - ENOCH ROBERTS' TAVERN IN QUAKERTOWN - MARCH 6, 1799 - A PAINTING DEPICTING THE FRIES REBELLION BY JAMES MANN

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds..”–Samuel Adams

As a dedicated student of the American Revolution and one who came of age during the 1960s, I certainly hold in my heart a place of fondness for those amongst the populace that engage in public protest when the conditions and circumstances call for it. But even as I watched my classmates and contemporaries take to the streets to rally against the real and perceived injustices of that turbulent decade, my youthful fervor was tempered by a certain cautious scrutiny of those forces that stirred the masses to action. And as I consider the activities of the Occupy Wall Street crowd, I am left with some of the same unease and distrust that I felt for the Tea Party advocates. Having spent as much time as I have in taverns, I know that once we take our differences and quarrels with each other outside there is little chance of achieving a reasonable or peaceful resolution. And even though our history is replete with those instances when a bit of outdoor insurrection made a measurable difference, much like Benjamin Franklin’s old Philadelphia Junto Society, I prefer to inspire and encourage change from inside the agreeable surroundings of a good pub.

Hopefully, there will come a day when we only need to see one man’s poverty to know that too many people are poor—one man’s hunger to know that too many people are starving—and one man’s hardship to know that too many people are hurting. And that the transformation of our society will come about not because of the anger and anxiety of the masses, but because of the conduct and concern of dedicated individuals. 

Posted by: Chris Poh

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Would Samuel Adams be the perfect tonic for Presidential summit?

Ladies and gentlemen, we now have a full-blown media frenzy surrounding what kind of beer will be served at today’s White House meeting between President Obama, Cambridge Police Sgt. James Crowley and Henry Louis Gates, Jr.  (Not to overstate the obvious, but I think it is pretty clear that we here at Pub Talk have been further out in front of this story than even the largest of news organizations!)

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Today, CNN gets into the act with another story about what kind of beer the White House staff should serve.  I think if you look below you will find some terrific selections already offered by our staff, but the CNN story concerns another angle to this subject that we also covered long before CNN thought to report on it.  As I am sure you know, the President has stated a love for Budweiser products.  That’s all well and good.   But in the midst of trying to defend his status as a natural born citizen, we here at Pub Talk thought he would be best served politically by enjoying something produced by an American company, which Budweiser no longer is.

My suggestion was to go with something brewed in Hawaii.  It serves the duel purpose of being American, and showing a strong working knowledge of his own home state.  But there are apparently other options coming from other areas of our great brewing nation…

In a letter to Obama dated Wednesday, Massachusetts Rep. Richard Neal strongly urges the president not to drink Budweiser, now owned by a Belgian company. Nor should the White House consider serving Miller or Coors, Neal writes, both owned by a United Kingdom conglomerate.

Instead, the White House should serve the three men — all with ties to Massachusetts — the local favorite, not only because of its popularity in the region but also because it remains the largest American-owned and brewed beer, Neal says.

Samuel Adams Jim Koch has even offered to brew a special batch just for the occasion.  I suppose that is not such a bad idea, but I still think a Hawaiian brew would be the right choice to help settle many of the President’s current political issues…or whatever you call them!

By Dave McBride.  Follow Dave on Twitter!

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