Young and Hungry

Time For Obama to Appoint a Beer Czar?

The White House has them for drugs, cars, energy, and the border, among other things. Why not a czar for beer? So asks Bob Skilnik, who, according to a statement on his blog Beer (& More) in Food, has forwarded his resume to President Obama, putting himself forward as a candidate for the position. Hey, a recession demands ingenuity, right? Skilnik, who describes himself as "a frustrated former Chicago deli owner," has made a business of debunking what he says were outrageous claims in early versions of the The South Beach Diet that beer is nothing but bad for you. Its author, Arthur Agatson, later moderated his claims.

The fact is, claims Skilnik, beer has gotten a bad rap. (The Lagerheads agree.) But don't take it from us. Skilnik is the author of several books on the subject, including 2003's The Drink Beer, Get Thin Diet and his latest published earlier this year, Does My BUTT Look BIG in This BEER? The latter is a compendium of nutritional information for some 2,000 beers around the world. Could there be a better credential for America's beer czar?

Here's an excerpt from a press release describing Skilnik's application to Obama. No word yet on how the White House might respond. (Our money says it won't.) Skilnik writes:

Look, I understand that one more Czar in Washington would only add to the notion that there could be more Czars in D.C. than you might have found at a turn-of-a-century Romanoff wedding. I’d therefore be willing instead to be a ‘Roving Beer Nutrition Czar,’ visiting bar after bar – something my wife would attest that I’m already quite adroit at – to get the word out on the positive attributes of America’s favorite adult beverage. I’m tired of reading websites of half-truths or picking up popular diet books that meekly admit that a little beer is good for your heart but then can’t tell you how many calories, carbohydrates or even Weight Watchers POINTS® are in beer or read the further mindless dribble of web-based ‘experts’ who claim that beer contains nothing more than ‘empty’ calories. In reality, you can find fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E, K and water soluble vitamins like C, B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid, biotin and niacin in beer. In addition, beer also contains more than 20 minerals, some protein, no fat, no cholesterol and less sodium per serving than all the honest politicians in all the bars in D.C. on a Friday night.

...I will be sending my resume to the White House in consideration for this much-needed political appointment. At the rate that President Obama is appointing Czars, I figure if I jump into the barrel early enough, I might have a strong chance of securing this spot. My son’s high school jeweled Prom King crown fits me, so that should help keep the federal budget somewhat in line with the kind of ceremonial accouterments needed for this important post, and if we concentrate on American beers only, we’ll be able to keep jobs from going overseas and make America stronger. Last week, I personally kept a U.S. brewing crew and three Chicago bartenders in business, and if I might add, without any T.A.R. P. funds.

Photo by pescatello used under a Creative Commons license.

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