With so much conflicting information about the I-1183 liquor initiative, I thought it might help voters understand what’s really at stake by providing a math story problem:
Hoping to bring an end to booze tyranny, Costco contributes $22.7 million to promote I-1183. (By comparison, the second-highest corporate contributor to the campaign is Safeway, which chips in a paltry $50,000.) Not only is Costco almost single-handedly fighting this battle in the name of alcohol democracy, the company’s net income in the fourth quarter this year was only $478 million, an increase of less than11 percent, thus necessitating that Costco increase membership fees for its 22 million members by 10 percent.
Approximately half of these members will pony up $10 more apiece per year to belong to Costco, while the others will pay $5 more.
Question: How much money will Costco gain by raising membership fees this year alone? Answer: Enough to promote the liquor bill at least six more times after it loses this year’s election.
There; now don’t you feel better about paying more for your Costco membership? If so, repeat after me: “Free-dumb, free-dumb, free-dumb!”