Bourbon and Sense

...because with Bourbon comes good Sense

March 2023 Bourbon and this week's Talking Sense.


George Dickel Tennessee Sour Mash Whiskey

George Dickel Sour Mash Whiskey

Aroma: George Dickel Tennessee Sour Mash smell is very light with little alcohol intensity.


Taste: the bottle tells us hints of maple and buttered corn. I could not taste any of that. Very light on palate.


Appearance: palest color we have tasted to date.


Finish: according to the bottle a smoky finish.


Story of: Distilled in Tullahoma, Tennessee; produced by Cascade Hollow Distilling Co. Norwalk CT!


The Economy


Budget Politics

President Biden has “published” his 2024 budget. It’s the first step in a long fight between the parties towards the final budget. The President continues his strengthening of social programs such as free pre-K childcare and free community college, safeguarding social security and Medicare, spending more on the military, and supposedly paying for a lot of it through increased taxes on the very rich and corporations. The Republicans don’t agree with any of it, setting a line in the sand on the national debt ceiling which the House has to approve an increase to allow the government to pay its current bills and continue operating, never mind the paying for the 2024 budget. The debt is something over 30 trillion dollars and has been voted on to raise the limit over 80 times since the 1920’s. Some definitions: deficit is when a government spending exceeds revenue. To pay for the deficit, the federal government borrows money by selling securities such as Treasury bonds, bills, notes and TIPS. The national debt is the accumulation of this borrowing along with associated interest owed to the investors who purchased these securities. (Source: Treasury Department website) The problem now stands that our national debt exceeds our gross domestic product (GDP) by 24%. The worry for that is that government borrowing crowds out private borrowing and that harms business development. We need to be prudent on both the debt and the budget.


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The Seamier Side of Governing


Sotrmy Daniels Payoff

A Manhattan District Attorney is investigating the hush money payments to the porn actress, Stormy Daniels, during the 2016 presidential campaign. I thought this had been handled already. But the Grand Jury assigned to the case invited President Trump to testify before them before they indict him! Supposedly, his personal lawyer at the time, Michael Cohen, paid her with his money and then was refunded by the Trump Organization – amounting to an illegal campaign contribution.


Federal prosecutors investigated this at the time but decided not to bring charges as Trump had become president. Why resurrect a second time an incident so tawdry? It does look like the Democrats are weaponizing the justice department: a favorite claim by the once and future king, I mean president.


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The Educational Part of our Show


Sour Mash

I was intrigued that this bottle’s label read Tennessee Sour Mash – not a word about bourbon. Come to find out, many of the bourbons use the sour mash method but don’t label it as such. Researching the term at this website: The Whiskey Wash I learned that some portion of the spent mash is added to the new batch of distillation in order to regulate the pH of the mash and ensure consistent taste. To quote, the distillery environment offers an abundant source of pH-lowering substance: spent mash, also called backset or stillage. This is the acidic, nutrient-rich substance that’s left behind in the still after a distillation run is complete. By adding a portion of that spent mash to their current mash (the remainder is often fed to livestock), distillers can ensure their mash pH remains within acceptable levels and ensure flavor continuity from batch to batch. . The Whiskey Wash goes on to write that, virtually all the major bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey distiller use the sour mash technique


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and Now for Something Completely Different


The Murdaugh Trial

This trial has been ongoing since last year when Alex Murdaugh allegedly killed his wife Maggie and son Paul with separate long rifles and in the space of seconds. The motive is supposedly to distract the ongoing trials for his committing financial fraud which he recently admitted to. All evidence is circumstantial; there is no proof like blood on Alex’s clothes or fingerprints on the guns; the guns haven’t been found. Moreover, Paul was accused of killing a young woman in a DUI boating accident two years ago; Alex maintains that the killers of Mags and PawPaw were seeking revenge for her death. The only evidence that I can point to is that Alex lied about where he was during the time of the shootings; He told the police he arrived at his compound after the time of the murders. But the police found a recording on this son’s phone that captured the Alex’s voice prior to the killings. When the police arrived, Alex’s first question to them, recorded on video, was, is their death official? That seems like a very odd thing to ask.


Update!


The jury deliberated just over three hours and concluded that Alex Murdaugh was guilty of murdering his son and wife. News commentators believe it was his lying for the past 20 months about his own whereabouts during the time of the crime that pushed the Jury to their verdict. Although no evidence was presented of weapons found, blood on clothes, or eyewitness, the accumulation of phone evidence including a recording on his son’s phone of Alex at the kennels near the time of the murders must have convinced the jurors of guilt or at least no reasonable doubt of guilt. Stay tuned for the movie.

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Covid-19 Statistics


The Data

COVID Daily Death Rate

These covid statistics come from The New York Times Data Source and show all the virus deaths reported in the U.S. since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.


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Covid-19 Statistics Cont.


Interpretation

The first “fact” that stands out is that we have been at around 500 deaths each day since last April 2022; quite a reduction since the highest peaks of January 2021 and February of 2022. I should lay over the vaccination rate to maybe understand the benefit of the vaccines that were administered. Otherwise, like the flu, the peaks are in the winter months and occur after Christmas gatherings (my interpretation). That might say mask wearing is important during the holidays. What do you see?


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