September 15, 2011

A law authorizing police to enter a private home whenever they can see a keg inside.

An outrageous ordinance proposed in Madison, Wisconsin:
Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulf said police wanted the ability to enter house parties with visible kegs, especially in situations where kegs could entice more people to come and make parties "even more out of control."

95 comments:

Quaestor said...

Tar and feathers exist for a reason.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

I'm not sure you understand Ann: They have a reason! By golly, This Time Is Different! For The Children!

Racist!

Quayle said...

Put the Keg in the bedroom.

Surely the Madisonians don't want the government in their bedroom!

Haven't they been saying that for years?

E.M. Davis said...

Police.


State.



Police.

State.


Police.
State.


Police State.


We're getting closer.

MadisonMan said...

There goes the market for lamps made out of old kegs.

TosaGuy said...

For $100 I will build any student in Madison a Hide-a-Keg, guaranteed to blend in as a piece of furniture or large plant.

Quaestor said...

Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator, huh? Only a dysfunctional society could conceive a requirement for such a bureau. Does Mark Woulf receive a salary for this, and if so how will he manage to live it down. Decent people used to make pilgrimages of contrition for less, on their knees yet!

Hoosier Daddy said...

I'm sure Walker is behind this.

Is all of Wisconsin as fucked up as Madison?

PETER V. BELLA said...

Wouldn't it be better to set up a website called KegWatch? Good citizens could become municipal rats, stool pigeons, and squealers. They can report on kegs in the windows, keg sales, and people carrying kegs.

They can also report rumors of kegs, forwarded emails regarding kegs, local websites mentioning kegs, and anything keg related.

TosaGuy said...

"Madison's Public Safety Review Committee considered a substitute version to the ordinance meant to tame rowdy, profit-driven house parties in the downtown area."

Ah, the anti-capitialist Madisonians are at it again.

It's time to set up a non-profit house party foundation.

Mark O said...

There are autocrats and then there is the University. And then there are the cops in a liberal university town.

Quayle said...

especially in situations where kegs could entice more people to come and make parties "even more out of control."

Goodness, who can blame them.

Imagine if these parties resulted in people chanting, singing songs, banging drums, handcuffing doors shut, and sleeping for days in the same room.

You can't tolerate that in Madison, can you?

E.M. Davis said...

First they came for the kegs, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't an alcoholic ...

Shanna said...

Police State.

We're getting closer.


It is creepy indeed.

I went to a party in college at a townhouse and there was a cop just hanging around outside for the majority of the party, as far as I could tell he was looking for someone to arrest but never did.

Emil Blatz said...

When kegs are outlawed....

Seriously, this will only spur the development of faux furniture, which will actually mask the presence of kegs, which would otherwise be seen through windows.

In my day, in the now demolished Ogg Hall dormitory I recall one fellow who placed a full-size refrigerator in the closet space of this tiny dorm room, drilled a hole in the door and plumbed a tap there. It held a quarter-barrel, and there was beer-on-tap in that room 24x7.

E.M. Davis said...

For $100 I will build any student in Madison a Hide-a-Keg, guaranteed to blend in as a piece of furniture or large plant.

The market works again. You could easily sell them for $250.

Quaestor said...

Fun and profit, the two things that must not be tolerated in the Obama Society, at least not below the level of GS23.

Clyde said...

Waitaminnit! "Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator"?! Seriously?!

Let me guess: Our stimulus dollars at work.

DADvocate said...

Totalitarian laws proposed in liberal Madisn? No surprise. Just showing their true colors.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Can an outrageous ordinance also be unconstitutional?

Scott M said...

So...keg parties where everyone has fun and some even get laid...bad. Camping the capital building with smelly, dirty-footed hippies...good?

garage mahal said...

I'm sure Walker is behind this.

He's got his own problems to worry about right now.

Oh. Sssshhhhh! Sorry!

Clyde said...

As the T-shirts say, "Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms should be a convenience store!"

TosaGuy said...

Of course my house-party foundation will have a diversity coordinator to ensure parties have different kinds of beer.

MadisonMan said...

I recall one fellow who placed a full-size refrigerator in the closet space of this tiny dorm room, drilled a hole in the door and plumbed a tap there. It held a quarter-barrel, and there was beer-on-tap in that room 24x7.

When we had parties in the Penn State Dorms, the keg was always in the 21-yo's room, and the spigot was threaded through the wall via electrical conduits to the room next door where the party was.

DADvocate said...

a full-size refrigerator in the closet space of this tiny dorm room, drilled a hole in the door and plumbed a tap there. It held a quarter-barrel, and there was beer-on-tap in that room 24x7.

My uncle had one of those in use until the day he died.

E.M. Davis said...

When we had parties in the Penn State Dorms, the keg was always in the 21-yo's room, and the spigot was threaded through the wall via electrical conduits to the room next door where the party was.

And who says Universities aren't bastions of ingenuity?

MadisonMan said...

Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator

To be fair, sort of, alcohol abuse is a significant problem at the UW. Not that it's a new problem, or likely to go away, or anything like that, but the city does like to be seen trying to do something about it. I don't know if undergrads are dying here from alcohol poisoning, or falls while drunk, like they do at my alma mater, though.

Toshtu said...

What's next, the right to enter a home if they see a box of Dunkin' Donuts?

A law banning curtains?

Hell, just cut to the chase and arrest anyone who buys a keg.

Fred4Pres said...

Police need to be public servants. As for the kegs being visable, all the kids need to do is make them not visable (Quayle's suggestion is a great one!). The police probably can get probable cause to investigate any party with more than a dozen people anyway (or easily get a warrant).

TosaGuy said...

"As the T-shirts say, "Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms should be a convenience store!"

Me and the deer hunting buddies have an ATFE (explosives) party every summer. We do some target shooting at exploding targets, then we drink and smoke cigars after all the firearms are stowed. We also dine a variety of grilled, smoked or salted meats procured from the previous hunting seasons.

gerry said...

Madison was so fearful of someone having an unregulated good time that its various regulatory committees had conflicting policies concerning alcohol consumption downtown.

It must be such a relief to have a Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator! No more consumption irregularities.

WAIT! Is there a Neighborhood Alcohol Policy Coordinator for each neighborhood? What are the pay steps? What is the retirement benefit? Health insurance? Is is civil-service protected? Paid holidays?

Has cheese hardened every cranial artery in Madison?

Paddy O said...

"Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator"

...

Before getting to the issue of interiorized kegs, maybe we should start with the very idea of a Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator.

gerry said...

What's next, the right to enter a home if they see a box of Dunkin' Donuts?

Madison Police officers already have legal authority to seize any donuts they see.

E.M. Davis said...

To be fair, sort of, alcohol abuse is a significant problem at the UW. Not that it's a new problem, or likely to go away, or anything like that, but the city does like to be seen trying to do something about it. I don't know if undergrads are dying here from alcohol poisoning, or falls while drunk, like they do at my alma mater, though.

Sounds like someone might need Drinking Insurance!

Ron Paul, however, would let them die.

traditionalguy said...

Prohibition is fun. Pure and sober people are safe people!

And these students don't vote anyway.

But the loss of DUI revenues may cause the Police to reconsider this one.

ndspinelli said...

It is Orwellian, but just close the fucking blinds!

Or, they could post one of the "no guns allowed" signs Mayor Mopey will be issuing. Does that apply to cops?

Hoosier Daddy said...

Well evidently stopping mobs of leftwing students who crash a seminar at a hotel isn't in the job description of the Madison police I suppose this ordinance gives them something to do.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Who's to blame when parties really get out of hand?

Shanna said...

"Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator"

Is anybody else picturing Super Troopers?

bagoh20 said...

In college, I was the guy with the van. We would load it up with "students" and go to concerts 50 miles away in Pittsburgh. There was always a tapped keg right up front between the seats.

In the near future such a thing will be a plot for a horror movie.

Paddy O said...

"To be fair, sort of, alcohol abuse is a significant problem at the UW."

No doubt, as it is at most universities. The trouble is there's a wink, wink, nod, nod attitude towards it.

People support alcohol abuse at universities. Universities make money off of being known as places where people abuse alcohol. I would guess that abusing alcohol and getting laid are far higher on the list of reasons the majority of students want to go to college than getting a good education.

So, the policy coordinator (Downtown) isn't really about coordinating the legal laws about drinking. The policy is to keep the underage drinking from causing riots or death.

Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?

Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulf: I'm shocked, shocked to find that drinking is going on in here!
[a sophomore hands Renault a red cup]

Sophomore: Your beer, sir.

Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulft: [sotto voce] Oh, thank you very much.

[aloud]
Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulf: Everybody out at once!

bagoh20 said...

I assume there is also language permitting entry at the sight of a box of wine, or is the uppity class above the law?

jrberg3 said...

"Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulf"

The downtown descriptor suggests that there are other Alcohol Policy Coordinators. As others ahve stated, this is the real concern. I wonder how much money is being wasted on his salary? But Wisconsin is just rolling in dough right now anyway, right?

Also, does that mean the uptown, midtown, or suburb coordinators don't buy-in to this policy??

Paddy O said...

If Universities cared about alcohol abuse they would suspend, discipline, or kick out any underaged student caught drinking. The 21+ year olds by themselves couldn't sustain the culture, so most alcohol abuse would no longer be a problem.

But, universities want alcohol abuse. It keeps them in business.

Kit said...

As MM said, this is a significant problem (large house-parites, that is), off-campus - especially with the under-21 crowd. I'll have to say, though, that as an alumna who participated, this seems easy enough to get around. I'll also say, that I was part of a group who was able to got a 1/4 barrel into football game, back in the day.

Browndog said...

I'm surprised Madison liberals are so short sighted.

Everyone knows that the way to solve every little "problem" is to ban whatever it is causing the problem.

The very least they could do is tax kegs out of existence.

Paddy O said...

What I also want to know is behind what closed doors, in what secret meeting, is the alcohol policy itself actually coordinated?

And can someone get a degree in Coordinating Alcohol Policy? Also, does this policy have a diversity clause, so that one can go to an alcohol oriented function downtown and not be greeted by kegs of only bud light?

Are the stouts and porters being given equal representation?

Triangle Man said...

Is there a Neighborhood Alcohol Policy Coordinator for each neighborhood? What are the pay steps? What is the retirement benefit? Health insurance? Is is civil-service protected? Paid holidays?

In Madison that is the job of the Block Captain.

Scott M said...

Are the stouts and porters being given equal representation?

Can you actually get a keg of stout?

Quayle said...

To be fair, sort of, alcohol abuse is a significant problem at the UW.

Funny, it isn't a significant problem at Brigham Young University, and why not?

Is it because they shredded the Constitution to allow the Provo, Utah Police to enter homes with kegs showing?

Or did they say it was unacceptable, and the kids voluntarily complied.

Liberals are so stupid when it comes to lines.

They refuse to draw any or admit there are any, then they spend all their time trying to construct plans to keep people from acting like there are none.

Utterly stupid.

Chip S. said...

First they came for the kegs...

No, this is the next step in the War on Fun. First they came for the dancers.
.
I expect the Beastie Boys to try to use this for a second-stage career boost.

Calypso Facto said...

There goes another 34% of sales for Milwaukee's Best Light.

wv: quemu. A large, flouncing Australian bird?

Paddy O said...

"Can you actually get a keg of stout?"

If not, we really need someone to help coordinate this as a new policy.

If so, what's the address of that party?

E.M. Davis said...

Can you actually get a keg of stout?

Well, if bars have them, can't anyone order one?

I'm sure it's not the same price as The Beast.

Scott M said...

I went to SIU back when it was famous for it's Halloween parties and was consistently in the top 10 for party schools in the country.

We, as freshmen, would head over to the off-campus housing areas where all the upperclassmen lived and simply party hop. A lot of the fun was simply going treasure-hunting for parties...you had no idea who you were going to meet or what was going to happen, but you could count on a dozen or so parties going on at any given evening Thursday through Saturday.

I have no idea how social media would effect that fun in discovery. Frankly, SIU has fallen from it's former glory as far as partying goes.

ndspinelli said...

You can certainly get a keg @ UW-Stout

Paddy O said...

savemorbeer.com sells a 50 liter keg of Guinness for about $154.


I heard that Sarah Palin used to have a stout fetish. Friends from back in the day say they could often see her drinking Old Rasputin on her porch.

edutcher said...

Hey, Ann, isn't there a 4th something-or-other that has to do with this?

You might know, being a law professor, and all.

Ann Althouse said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us. These kids should be able to drink in the local bars. And let the police worry about whatever bad things people start doing after they get drunk.

Kit said...

The very least they could do is tax kegs out of existence.

I believe there is some kind enhanced deposit and some kind of list that campus area liquor stores are required to keep in order limit the number of kegs per house.

Quayle, it's the larger cultural setting, don't you think? Morman vs. a well engrained statewide drinking culture. There's also a large number of condos that have drawn many emptynesters downtown...

DADvocate said...

He's got his own problems to worry about right now.

From the article: John Doe investigations are secret proceedings in which witnesses can be subpoenaed and compelled to testify under oath about potential criminal matters and are forbidden from talking publicly about the case. Sources said prosecutors have been looking into whether county staffers were doing political work while on the clock and failing to do county jobs.

"John Doe inverstigation," compelled to testify, forbidden from talking. This sounds Kafkaesque and creepy.

While I think it should be forbidden, I'd bet a high percentage of county staffers (city, state and federal, too) participate in political activity while on the clock. Plus, this is a lot of resources spent on a minor issue.

We won't prosecute pro-Obama voter intimidation, but we'll spend millions on checking this out? The selective enforcement of this in the case of a successful Republican governor in a Republican state doesn't reflect well on the Obama administration. HERE's some cases where federal employees emailed supporting while on the job using government email.

Once again, you've shown yourself to be a biased pig, willing to ignore fascist/totalitarian actions by government in order to promote fascism/totalitariansism.

Paddy O said...

"These kids should be able to drink in the local bars."

What, and ruin the local bars?

Skyler said...

Another example of why we should be grateful for the wisdom of George Mason.

Scott M said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us.

I'm hip. It did trigger a question, though. Anyone know what the demographic and ideological makeup is of MADD's membership?

MadisonMan said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us.

Yes.

I hear that the daughter is drinking now that she is in the dorms. I believe she does what is called pre-drinking, where you drink before you go out with friends, and then don't drink at the party. Which is a good tactic, I think, unless you start drinking at the party too.

Completely illegal of course. And there are all sorts of University fines if you are caught -- but they punish the bad behavior that results, not the actual drinking, which I think is sensible.

garage mahal said...

Once again, you've shown yourself to be a biased pig, willing to ignore fascist/totalitarian actions by government in order to promote fascism/totalitariansism.

Good one!

Bartender Cabbie said...

This would be great for cops. Free drinks after a free meal somewhere. A lot of cops are sort of freeloaders.

edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us.

Yes, 18 year old drunks are so much more in control of themselves.

Calypso Facto said...

He's got his own problems to worry about right now.

Let me know when this former aide's actions rise above the level of unpunished death threats while at work for the state or Dem Shelly "“We are not supposed to use school email, but ... I don’t frankly care" Moore's campaign.

Shanna said...

I believe she does what is called pre-drinking, where you drink before you go out with friends, and then don't drink at the party.

We used to do that before going out. It's a lot cheaper than drinking out too.

kimsch said...

When my mom was 18 the drinking age in Illinois was 18 for women and 21 for men (the age of majority for each gender.)

When my uncle (3-1/2 years older than me - Mom's the oldest, he's the youngest of 6) was 18 the drinking age in Illinois was 19 for beer and wine for both genders and 21 for hard liquor. My uncle turned 21 four weeks after the drinking age changed to 21 for anything with alcohol.

When I was 18 the drinking age in Illinois was 21 but it was still 18 in Wisconsin. So I did a lot of crossing the Cheese Curtain to drink legally. Having a friend whose family had a summer house on Lake Geneva helped as well. We had somewhere local to crash.

wv: grable

Tank said...

Ann Althouse said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us. These kids should be able to drink in the local bars. And let the police worry about whatever bad things people start doing after they get drunk.


Back when the drinking age was 18 (here in the East, at least), it seemed like most colleges had a Pub on campus that you could walk to. Then you walked back to your dorm. End of story.

t-man said...

What this country needs is a national campaign so that everyone watches "The Bad News Bears". That movie really showshow ridiculously nannyish society is today compared to even a short time ago.

Quayle said...

The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us.

It was 18 when I grew up in New Jersey and it wasn't the end of the world.

One change I'd make is have it be July 1 if you turned 18 in school.

Our senior year, the student body incrementally became inebriated as each day a few more turned 18.

Probably shouldn't have high school seniors able to purchase. It flowed too easily to the underclassmen and women.

Calypso Facto said...

"The real enemy is the federal government, forcing the 21 drinking age on us."

The Federal (Army anyway) policy when I went into the service was that as long as you were active duty, you could drink, so I was legal at 17 on post. It's still my biggest beef with the 21 mandate: old enough to sign up and die for your country at 18, but not old enough to buy a beer. Flat wrong, IMHO.

Calypso Facto said...

Maybe they should leave the kids alone and focus on keeping beer away from Democrats, who obviously can't handle it.

Chuck66 said...

Quayle, my older brother went to high school when Wisconsin's drinking age was 18. For kids held back a year, they could legally drink during their Jr year in high school. So you had kids in 11th grade going to the bar during lunch time and slamming cocktails.

Chuck66 said...

"Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator"

If this job is like the Diversity Coordinator, it is the highest paying job for doing virtually nothing.

Seeing Red said...

Stick a big condom on it, it'll be fine.

Alex said...

so garage - you think the police should have this kind of power?

Alex said...

Yes, 18 year old drunks are so much more in control of themselves.

In Europe, they start kids drinking wine at 12. By the time they're 18, alcohol has been demystified and not a sign of rebellion against teh authoriteh.

Seeing Red said...

Ahhh, the good old days of concerts at Alpine & driving back to IL.

I wasn't the one who opened the door to see where the line on the side of the road was, tho.

MadisonMan said...

I'd be curious to know who exactly came up with this idea. The story is kinda vague on that most interesting tidbit.

(I'm also curious: How do they tell at glance the difference between a root beer keg and a beer keg?)

E.M. Davis said...

(I'm also curious: How do they tell at glance the difference between a root beer keg and a beer keg?)

Because there's no such thing as a root beer keg?

Carol_Herman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MadisonMan said...

Because there's no such thing as a root beer keg?

What was I drinking from at my daughter's high school graduation party.

Sprecher's Root Beer on tap is superb.

Alex said...

I'd be curious to know who exactly came up with this idea. The story is kinda vague on that most interesting tidbit.

Let me guess. It's the same "moral majority" busybodies who want to ban condom sales in drugstores.

Carol_Herman said...

There's a great comic's DVD out there. His name is Lavell Crawford. Yeah. He's a very big black guy. And, in his routine he talks about his mom.

His mom watches his back.

And, there's a knock on the door. And, the police are outside. When the mom is told her son has a stash of cocaine inside the house.

So, the mom says "not my son." (He sells vestments for the church.)

And, then the mom asks "Do you have a warrant?"

The answer is "no." So Lavell Crawford's mom ... slams the front door ... and says "bless you."

I loved the dissonance!

Cops can say they've seen kegs ... and they still need a warrant to come in. To bypass this is one expensive lawsuit for the "city." Which means from out of the taxpayers, there, the money goes straight into the pockets of lawyers.

Doesn't stop "keg parties."

HOWEVER, if a "keg party" gets loud enough. And, some of the drunken kids are sick on the lawn ... AND, the neighbors call in a "NOISE NUISANCE" there are plenty of laws the cops can use against those kids ... Who will now have to ask their parents to hire lawyers.

Business is business.

Stupid if the police exceed their authority and enter without a warrant. Because then what can they do?

Judges aren't in a policeman's pocket.

Cases that don't meet the standards of an arrest are thrown out of court. (Wisely.) Otherwise? They just lead to lawsuits.

I've been to parties (among adults), where the caterers bring the kegs.

And, yes, the kids can drink. It's not that big a deal if your teenager likes drinking a beer. Some are even particular on the brand they want. (Yellow piss water. I can't tell that there are differences between brands.)

DADvocate said...

Good one!

Actually, I didn't think it was that great, but I'm running low on adjectives and other descripters today.

Quaestor said...

Alex wrote:
so garage - you think the police should have this kind of power?

So far I see no reply from garage. Qui tacet consentiret, as they say.

Unfortunately, we conservatives have been guilty in the past of wanting to excessively restrain private behavior. However, the Liburils have done more than their fair share, though it hasn't made them content since they can't rest until private opinions are controlled as well.

This neo-Wheelerism has got to be stopped in its tracks.

traditionalguy said...

Kegs are the first sign of trouble in River City.

Kegel exercises come next.

And then Kegel exercisers break condoms when they come to be needed and unplanned parenthood comes next.

Kegs are the lubricant for the next generation.

sorepaw said...

Downtown Alcohol Policy Coordinator.

Too bad holders of such a bureaucratic office can't be impeached.

I find it interesting that back in the 1910s, Federal prohibition of alcohol was generally understood to require a Constitutional amendment. A mighty foolish amendment to ratify, and one that had to be repealed via another amendment.

But no Constitutional amendment was ever ratified to allow the Feds to make morphine a "controlled substance," to ban the use of marijuana, etc. Congress merely arrogated the power unto itself.

So when Mothers against Drunk Driving demanded selective prohibition of booze for 18 to 21 year olds, Congress did a little bit more arrogating.

Selective prohibition doesn't work, as you'll quickly discover by visiting any college campus (other than maybe BYU).

Prohibition of marijuana, cocaine, and heroin hasn't worked, either, but in trying to uphold it, the Supreme Court has been persuaded to shred Amendment Number 4 (when it hasn't back-pedaled on the commerce clause).

Alcohol and drug prohibition corrupts every legal system that tries to enact and enforce it.

sorepaw said...

The unit known as Garage regrets to announce that no module regarding the suppression of keg parties has been installed, so no output on the subject can be emitted.

J said...

How about a law that anyone can enter a pig's residence when they see a donut inside?