Is this the most pointless strike in the history of industrial action?

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Tonight on The Ezra Levant Show, guest host David Menzies asks could the strike by the 9,000 employees of the Liquor Control Board of Ontario be the most pointless strike in history?

It certainly seems that way to me. If you reside in Ontario and are hoping to pick up a bottle at a local LCBO outlet, you might think this would mean you're out of luck. However, you’re definitely not out of options.

While you can’t shop at a government-owned LCBO store for at least two weeks, this doesn’t mean you’ll be denied alcohol.

There’s the beer stores, independent wine shops and grocery stores already licensed to sell beer and wine. Plus, you can simply order online from the LCBO’s own website. When the strike ends, will customers even return to physical LCBO stores after experiencing the convenience of online liquor shopping? That definitely won’t be good for job security.

So much for the union holding consumers hostage. With these alternatives, a long, hot, dry summer isn’t in the cards.

As LCBO employees picket, we need to ask bigger questions about the government’s role in retailing alcohol. Why is the government in the booze business to begin with? Shouldn’t it be regulating and taxing, rather than retailing alcoholic beverages?

The decades-old justification for government-run liquor monopolies, based on “social responsibility,” is flawed. Private liquor stores just want to sell as much booze as possible, regardless of consequences. Government stores, in theory, are more compassionate and caring, turning down sales if necessary.

However, this notion of social responsibility is a fallacy. Years ago, we proved it when a 14-year-old boy in a burqa bought liquor unchallenged at three LCBO stores. Despite policies demanding age verification, none was done. The government shrugged it off, and no staffers were reprimanded. Compare this to the severe penalties faced by private store owners for similar violations.

The union’s resistance to opening up the liquor market doesn’t make sense. For decades, there have been LCBO agency stores in small markets, yet larger cities are deemed too immature for similar convenience.

This strike is destined for failure. The union doesn’t hold any leverage, public opinion isn’t on their side, and the government won’t back down. One silver lining with all 677 LCBO stores closed is that shoplifting, which allegedly costs the LCBO millions annually, will be reduced to zero. At least that’s something Ontario taxpayers can toast to this summer.

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