Then and now.
I am writing this a few weeks prior to the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy, November 22, 1963, and by the time you read this, you'll probably have viewed one of the several special presentations on TV marking the horrific events of that day as well as remembrances of President Kennedy's life. I can recall standing in gym class as a young junior high school student, wondering what was going on. Our phys ed teacher (and coach), a hard-bitten, ex-marine with a buzzcut, had been interrupted in mid-sentence by the assistant principal, who put his arm around Coach's broad shoulders and whispered something in his ear Then Coach told us all to sit in place, walked slowly back to his glass-enclosed office, and, in full view of his students, began sobbing into his hands.
Some observers hare written that the Kennedy assassination serves as a kind a demarcation point between a simpler more innocent time and the beginning of when our culture began losing its. innocence. The remainder of that decade saw a cultural and social upheaval as well as the ongoing confusion brought on by the Vietnam War it easy to say that everything was different back before November 22, 1963, but that probably isn't true, though we'd like to believe. so.
But I think that recognizing the Kennedy assassination's place in our collective memory is an important element in binding together our disparate culture, especially these days, when the slightest of political or social differences seems to result in bitter, uncompromising points-of-view. Looking back can certainly help remind people how much more we all have in common.
Thinking of the early Sixties makes me wonder what the control states were like back when cars boasted big engines and shiny fins. From everything I've heard through the years, control state operations were primitive compared to today, with drab, unappealing stores and rigid rules and regulations that sometimes ran counter to common sense. Certainly nothing like today's modern, operations with their state-of-the-art warehouses, dynamic-looking stores featuring deep and wide inventories, and a range of initiatives that prioritize promoting social responsibility efforts.
So, it's not suiprising that today's control states continue to post sales and volume gains, as our cover story (see page 8, "Control States' Fiscal Year in. Review 2013) points out. This is the 17th consecutive year that StateWays is presenting its annual review of the financial progress being made throughout the control states, providing an overview of the beverage alcohol business. Briefly, for Fiscal Year 2013 total gross sales in the control states grew by 5.2%, to more than $9 billion. Overall revenue contributions to state coffers by control jurisdictions increased by 5.3% to. $2.69 billion, And distilled sporits case volume rose 3.3% to 46.9 million cases.
Congratulations to all control state officials who have played a part in the notable growth that has taken place recently and throughout the decades.
And happy New Year!
Richard Brandes, Editor-in-Chief