The Real Bud Light Scandal
Everybody knows, though many will perhaps have forgotten fairly quickly, of the insane episode involving the marketers of Bud Light and their decision to enlist a female impersonator named Dylan Mulvaney in its ad campaign, issuing a special can with his image on it, making an ad featuring him, and so forth. I'm not of course supposed to call him a female impersonator, or "him." But even by the standards of those who think he should be referred to as a "trans woman," Mulvaney fails: he shouldn't be considered to be any sort of woman, as it isn't a woman that he impersonates, but a somewhat bizarre version of a teenaged girl.
I really don't think there has ever in real life been a female human who behaved as absurdly as Mulvaney does. I did not realize until a day or two ago, when I finally saw the video of him sipping Bud Light in a bubble bath, just how bizarre he is. I suppose it could be comic, but the fact that we're supposed to take his "girlhood" as real makes it disturbing. (I can't find a video of the commercial itself, but if you look for it on YouTube you can find various news broadcasts that show at least parts of it.) It shouldn't have surprised anybody that Bud Light customers were not pleased, but the marketers were in fact surprised that their effort to "evolve and elevate" the beer, or rather the image of the beer, provoked a negative reaction.
So far, so typical of the stupid times we live in. But I would like to point out a more fundamental problem. Bud Light as a brand is now in trouble because the episode alienated the sort of hard workin' regular guy who is or was a Bud Light drinker. But why was he? How did Bud Light become a sort of emblem of the hard workin' regular guy? Not long ago I heard, in some public place, some pop-country singer describing a wonderful world where the supply of Bud Light would be unlimited--not just beer, not even Budweiser, but Bud Light, by name.
This is disgraceful. The long-standing mainstream American beer brands--Budweiser and the rest--have always been pretty poor beer, but they're recognizable as beer. Light, or "lite," beers, on the other hand, are so watery as to be nearly tasteless. Presumably they were invented and marketed as a way to enable the drinker to get a certain amount of alcohol into his system with roughly two-thirds of the calories that would come along with normal beer. Hard workin' regular guys are suppose to actually like beer and not be overly concerned with watching their weight. And they're not supposed to like wimpy stuff like light beer. Clearly we as a society have failed.
I've seen a lot of progressive reaction to this and other similar controversies involving transgenderism, and most of it is disingenous-to-dishonest: "Why are you right-wingers so obsessed with this harmless stuff?" And of course "Why are you so full of hate?" It's not trivial and harmless fun when the entire establishment, government and corporate, insists that we call Dylan Mulvaney a woman, and brings whatever power it legally can to ostracize anyone who contradicts this dogma. Physical violence is directed by "trans men" against actual women who refuse to go along with the program; Riley Gaines, a female swimmer who was beaten in unfair competition with a man and had the nerve to call it unfair, was attacked at a college campus when she tried to give a speech stating her views there. Dylan Mulvaney was received at the White House and given an interview with the president.
I've always found it hard to believe that anyone actually likes light beer, but I know one person who does, and proved it in a blind test. With some friends she went to a beer sampling where a couple of dozen unidentified beers were offered, Bud Light among them. I think this was at a brewery and suspect the Bud Light was included more or less as a joke. They ranked the ones they liked, and it was only after all had chosen their favorites that the samples were identified. She chose Bud Light. So she can't be accused of pretending or forcing herself to like it, the way people do with low-fat or non-fat foods.
All of this is just nonsense, Mac. Guns are the real problem. This is Republican noise to keep people from concentrating on important issues, like the killing of our fellow citizens because Republicans have normalized gun violence.
I admit that Democrats are awful, and that woke-ism is stupid, and also that Anheuser Busch products are not real beer. But the modern day Republican party are just evil because children being killed does not matter to them.
I would much prefer men dressed as women reading to them than someone tearing apart their bodies with high caliber bullets.
Posted by: Stu | 05/09/2023 at 06:51 AM
So compared to guns the endless expansion of the Sexual Revolution, even to the detriment of children, is a non-issue? Just "Republican noise"?
Posted by: Rob G | 05/10/2023 at 05:52 AM
I don't engage in the gun argument anymore. For that matter I don't engage in political arguments at all with people on the left. Stu is a good friend and there are plenty of other things we enjoy talking about.
For the record, the title of this post and much of its substance are meant humorously. I do not actually consider it a serious problem that hard workin' regular guys drink Bud Light. Hard workin' regular guys who watch sports a lot, I should say.
:-) in case that's needed :-)
Posted by: Mac | 05/10/2023 at 08:03 AM
Sorry. Gun violence upsets me more than anything else. The rest of the issues seem quite trivial in comparison. In general it makes me think America is a terrible country. But I was born and live here, and it is likely better than being in Afghanistan or some other crazy place.
Posted by: Stu | 05/10/2023 at 09:10 AM
I'll make my standard remark on gun violence: when I was growing up, everybody had guns and nobody got shot. Something besides the availability of guns is at work.
Posted by: Mac | 05/10/2023 at 12:03 PM
I agree. Not that I think at all that the GOP is great on the issue, or that the NRA seems pretty insane at some times. But look at Canada -- lots of guns, strong hunting culture, etc., but very few of these crazy shootings. As you say, something else is going on.
Posted by: Rob G | 05/10/2023 at 01:30 PM
The thing about light beer is that you can drink a lot of it without getting drunk. Don't think of it as beer, think of it as a beer-adjacent method of re-hydration, for when you're out on your boat or have just come in from mowing the lawn.
Posted by: Anne-Marie's Husband | 05/11/2023 at 09:35 PM
At first glance I thought this was from Anne-Marie, and I was surprised, because women in general don't prefer beer, and if they do drink it they don't view it or talk about it in the same way.
Anyway: I've heard a lot of people say that about light beer--that you can drink a lot without getting drunk--and I'm skeptical, because most light beer is not that much lower in alcohol content than most non-light. Most popular beers are 4-5% alcohol, with lights toward the bottom and non-lights toward the top. Bud Light is 4.2, Miller High Life is 4.6. The disparity between Bud Light and regular Bud is greater than most: 4.2 vs. 5. I can tell a difference in the effect of a half-percent difference but it's not dramatic, and not like I could drink a whole lot more of the lighter one without getting drunk. Here's a useful chart:
I'm almost through a 6-pack of a local beer which is over 7, and I *really* feel that.
Basically I just feel disappointed, bordering on cheated, when I drink a light beer. Which doesn't often happen--only if there's nothing else at hand.
Posted by: Mac | 05/11/2023 at 11:20 PM
I don't think I've ever drunk a light beer by choice. But I don't like sweet drinks much, except with certain foods, so if I want a drink with a meal but don't want alcohol, I'll drink a N/A beer. Heineken 0.0 is the best one I've found -- its taste approaches actual Heineken. I would only drink it with food, however, or as hydration. To me it doesn't taste good enough to drink it on its own, as I would with a quality beer. If I go out to eat and don't want alcohol I'll usually just get a club soda if they don't have a decent N/A beer.
Posted by: Rob G | 05/12/2023 at 06:27 AM
As far as I can recall I've never tasted non-alcoholic beer. I feel vaguely sad when I see it in the store, pitying those who want to drink beer but can't.
Posted by: Mac | 05/12/2023 at 09:32 AM
I feel sorry for those who have to drink gluten-free beer.
Posted by: Thaddeus Gotcher | 05/12/2023 at 02:32 PM
My first thought was "isn't most of it?". Then I looked it up. I didn't realize barley has gluten.
Posted by: Mac | 05/12/2023 at 06:19 PM
I'm drinking a reduced gluten beer right now. Stone Delicious Double IPA (9.4 % ABV). It's not bad. Not great. I've had the Delicious IPA before (not realizing it was reduced gluten) and liked it well enough, so I figured I'd give the double a try. But there are definitely better beers in the price and abv range.
Posted by: Don | 05/12/2023 at 08:58 PM
9.4?!? If nothing else you got your money's worth in buzz.
Posted by: Mac | 05/13/2023 at 09:48 AM
Tried a couple N/A beers last night by a brewer called Athletic -- an IPA and a golden ale. Both just a tad on the light side, but still quite good. Would not have guessed they were N/A if I had not known ahead of time.
Posted by: Rob G | 05/13/2023 at 10:13 AM
Good to know, though I hope I won't need to. :-)
Posted by: Mac | 05/13/2023 at 12:26 PM
Re this comment from Rob a day or two ago : "But I don't like sweet drinks much, except with certain foods, so if I want a drink with a meal but don't want alcohol, I'll drink a N/A beer. "
Around here, the most obvious solution, apart from water, is unsweetened iced tea. Although then you get caffeine.
Posted by: Mac | 05/13/2023 at 12:30 PM
Wow, I thought the discrepancy in alcohol content was greater. Perhaps it used to be, and my information is outdated.
Anyway, y'all, it's not hard to make your own beer.
Posted by: Anne-Marie's Husband | 05/13/2023 at 09:51 PM
There are those in the 3% range, and that would certainly be less, um, effective than a 4.5 or greater. But the big names in light, Bud and Miller, are 4.2. So is Coors light.
I tried making my own beer once back in the '70s. It was awful. In fact I'd forgotten about it until you reminded me. Sometime later, early or mid '80s, I knew a guy who made his own, and it was awful, too. So I thought that was just the way it was. Then ten years or so ago I had some made by someone who really knew what he was doing, and I was amazed--it was excellent. I don't think I want to go to the trouble, though.
Posted by: Mac | 05/13/2023 at 11:30 PM
To tell the truth, I usually drink club soda/lime when I'm out and don't want alcohol, mainly because of the cost. Can't see paying four or five bucks for a bottle of N/A.
Posted by: Rob G | 05/14/2023 at 08:08 PM
That would certainly give me pause. When I want a beer with a meal out sometimes it's PBR or High Life because they're normally cheaper.
Posted by: Mac | 05/14/2023 at 10:06 PM
Oh, I've had Athletic IPA. It's a favourite of my non-drinker uncle. I agree, it is good.
Posted by: Anne-Marie | 05/16/2023 at 07:02 PM