27 October 2009

"Amazon suspends wine-retailing program"

NY Wine Examiner | Amazon suspends wine-retailing program

For the past two years Amazon.com has been developing a program that would have revolutionized wine retailing in the United States – making almost any wine available to consumers throughout the country. [...]

One of the main reasons why this program has been put on hold is the complexity of wine-shipping laws within the United States, and that fact that the major wholesalers spend millions of dollars on the state level to keep it difficult for the consumer to have access to wine they want at good prices. [...]

Amazon’s program was the first major step toward offering the consumer freedom of choice while still complying with the myriad laws and restrictions on the wine trade in the United States.

Insert sad face here.

As usual, laws nominally designed to protect the consumer do nothing but limit their choices and drive the prices they pay higher while benefiting entrenched, well-connected businesses and bureaucrats. Same old song.

(Via Jacob Grier.)

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