Milwaukee – Emotions ran high today at a public hearing called by Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle to discuss alleged price gouging by the fast food industry. Doyle opened the hearing with a speech decrying A&W Restaurants’ latest quarterly report, which shows an 18% increase in profits, totaling $189 million. “A&W’s price gouging costs Wisconsin consumers $178 billion per day,” said Doyle, citing a study compiled by noted UW economist Don Nichols.
The Bear testified wearing his trademark orange sweater, hat, and no pants, and fired back at the committee (as a peace offering, Doyle also chose to wear no pants). “I’m not from Wisconsin, but I imagine they do teach basic economics in the public schools,” he said. “I could be out in the field figuring out a way to increase supply of root beer to keep the price down, but instead I’m stuck at this phony dog and pony show so the Governor can get a cheap press hit,” said the Bear. The Bear then asked if there were any actual dogs or ponies he could take with him, as they are important ingredients in A&W’s hamburgers.
“We’re an international company, so it’s a cruel joke on Wisconsin\’s consumers to make them think that somehow their situation is unique,” continued the Bear. “Instead of blaming the business that provides a necessary service, the Governor should be offering to make root bear cheaper by repealing the law that requires it be marked up to guarantee a certain profit. Or you could cut the state’s tax on root beer if you were sincerely interested in what you could do to help consumers. Furthermore, you could scale back excessive regulations that prohibit A&W restaurants from providing more root beer supply to consumers, which would cut the price dramatically, or you could provide incentives for the formulation of alternative sources of root beer,” said the Bear. “Any of these options would be a hundred times more effective than calling me in for this charade,” he added.
Department of Health and Family Services administrator Burnie Bridge aggressively questioned the Bear, pointing out that while it only costs A&W about five cents to produce a cup of root beer, they sell it to customers for over a dollar. “It is outrageous that A&W would continue to sell a product for the price that people are willing to pay for it,” said Bridge.
Bridge also produced photographs of the Bear and some high priced Washington lobbyists treating legislators to a night out at “The Bear Essentials,” a local gentlemen’s club. \”We\’re bears,\” answered the Bear. \”Sometimes we get tired of looking at the same tails,\” he added.
Following his testimony, the bear ate Secretary of Agriculture Rod Nilsestuen.
I promise, no more fast-food related posts…