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Je Suis Charlie
"Our republic and its press will rise or fall together." — Joseph Pulitzer

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Photo: Debra Reid, Sparks Tribune

   Everybody knows the dice are loaded.
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed.
   Everybody knows the war is over.
Everybody knows the good guys lost.
   Everybody knows the fight was fixed.
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich.
   That's how it goes.
Everybody knows...
Everybody knows the scene is dead
   But there's gonna be a meter on your bed
That will disclose
   What everybody knows...
   Everybody talking to their pockets.
Everybody wants a box of chocolates
   and a long red rose.
   Everybody knows. Everybody knows.
That's how it goes.
Everybody knows.

By Leonard Cohen (1934-2016) & Sharon Robinson
© 1988 CBS Records, Inc.

I hope you understand I just had to go back to the island.
Leon Russell, 1942-2016

True Confession: I drink Bud Light
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 7-5-2023 / Expansions in blue.

Thank you all for coming to this meeting, fellow political junkies. My name is Andrew and I drink Bud Light.

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The Dean's List

   The Dean of Reno Bloggers could very well be Andrew Barbano, self-described "fighter of public demons," who started putting his "Barbwire" columns online in 1996 and now runs 10 sites.

RENO NEWS & REVIEW, 11-9-2006

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It all started with Hollywood superstar Paul Newman. Although I did a little work for his Budweiser Lightning CanAm racing team back in my motorsports days, my most recent encounter occurred much closer to home.

My refrigerator, actually.

I keep a couple of pizzas in the freezer to consult whenever temptation visits. I always buy Newman's Own.

Even though they cost more, all profits go to charity. The late Mr. Newman's foundation long ago eclipsed $100 million to non-profit organizations.

Even though he died in 2008 ("Paul Newman: Driven Star" Barbwire 9-28-2008), his image still sells very well.

I once had a major New York ad agency fly their chief counsel to Reno to negotiate a Newman racing sponsorship for one of their big time clients. They offered a laughable amount.

"Paul's getting $3 million a picture," his racing partner chuckled when I told him about it.

The most successful movie star since WW2 was not only a good race driver, he was also pretty stylish in the kitchen. His salad dressings were so popular that he started making batches in his Connecticut garage to give to friends.

Pretty soon, they were in grocery stores, then started what is known in the trade as brand extensions. Hence my pizzas and other products.

And so it came to pass late one night last week that I needed a pizza, a desire soon assuaged by firing up a Newman's Own Stone Fired Quattro Formaggi (four cheese) beauty.

And then the humour descended upon me: I needed a beer to go with it. There, in the back of my fridge, was a lonely Bud Light, perfect for the occasion.

Alas and alack, moonhowlers have toppled Bud Light from its well-deserved number one ranking after more than two decades. Thanks to their unpatriotic efforts, a foreign import now rules.

About three months ago, a transgender podcaster named Dylan Mulvaney posted a Bud Light promotional video. Trolls pounced.

Anheuser-Busch had even given Mulvaney a can of Bud Light with her picture on it. String her up!

I have not read any of their viral infections and do not intend to do so.

The results of the insults speak for themselves. Apparently there were a lot of manhood-challenged Bud Light drinkers who possessed loyalty worthy of a pre-teen Donald Trump. (I pity their wives.)

Two Bud marketing execs who had OK'd the Mulvaney influencer video are now on "administrative leave," the term normally applied to cops who shot somebody.

Brand loyalty and sports team affinity is as fickle as teenage crushes.

Wanting to belong remains an innate human tribal desire. Why else would anyone put hyper-expensive Las Vegas Raiders tickets on a high interest credit card to watch guys beat on each other when they need binoculars to see which of the little ants down on the field is which?

But hey, you've bought your way into the tribe which gathers on the parking lot, all wearing expensive Raiders paraphernalia to partake of the body and blood of their gods (hot dogs and beer) before venturing several miles into the holy of holies.

If the Bud bosses had been paying me, I would have risked my job advising them to rise above the bigotry.

Look how Nike hugely benefited as the only corporate sponsor to stand with former UNR/49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick when he protested America's endemic racism.

Oh, I forgot, we no longer have a racism problem. Gov. Ron DeSatanist told me so. And that pillar of civic virtue, Clarence Thomas, even coined the term "racialism" because racism no longer exists.

Wiseman George Carlin once advised to beware when they start adding syllables.

Shell shock became combat fatigue, he groused. Over the decades, it morphed into traumatic stress syndrome and is now post-traumatic stress disorder.

"Shell shock" perfectly described the damage done to soldiers who've undergone such suffering, Carlin said. Now, we have bloodless "PTSD."

George Carlin lost his lucrative Gomorrah South gigs when he stopped doing the Hippy Dippy Weatherman and held up a mirror to America. He prospered, as did Nike.

Bud's bosses, not so much.

Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth turned into a waffle maker on "CBS Mornings."

"There's a big social conversation taking place right now and big brands are right in the middle of it...not just our industry or Bud Light," he mumbled, adding "What we need to understand is, deeply understand and appreciate, is the consumer and what they want, what they care about and what they expect from big brands."

How about balls? Macho woman bashers understand brass balls. They don't appreciate soggy soothing suits.

All this reminds me of Schlitz. Ever heard of them? Back in the mid-1970s, Schlitz was the world's largest brewery.

I had several beers with one of their execs in Honolulu in 1974. He was there in advance of their national convention. I tried to use the connection to get a future gathering in northern Nevada but soon confronted the awful truth: We didn't have enough hotel rooms to handle the action.

Not long thereafter, the owning family's corporate CEO, Henry Uihlein, died of cancer. The rudderless company went sideways.

Somebody tinkered with the ingredients of the flagship brand.

One batch was so modified that when poured, it wouldn't create a "head" of foam, which is useless. The 1970s equivalent of trolls went to work. Competitors planted the word that Schlitz was selling (gasp) "green beer." Zounds.

Beer does not need aging or foam, but brewers add ingredients just like detergent marketers. Housewives were used to soap creating bubbles. Detergents, which were much more efficient, didn't do so. But bubbles told housewives that the detergent was working. So they add bubble chemicals to this very day, as do brewers.

It's all a marketing mirage like the beer-broads-bras-macho mystique. I know a Sparks businessman who used to smoke. One day, he was out of Camels. A woman offered him a Virginia Slim, a brand targeted to addict women with flowers on the tall thin packaging.

My Sparks friend recoiled, refusing to put a "Vagina Slime" into his mouth. That's marketing and salesmanship, baby.

Cigarettes and beer are both drug delivery systems. The only real differences are illusions created by the advertising department. Kinda like with politicians.

For me, I will remain a good Christian and enjoy my vices in moderation. An occasional Paul Newman pizza with one Bud Light.

I'm an old marketing and advertising dinosaur, immunized against spin.

Have a Bud Light.

Stay safe, get vaxxed and pray for those cruelly afflicted by the cruelly small minds on this small planet.

¡ se puede!

Be well. Raise hell.
/ Esté bien. Haga infierno. (Pardon my Spanglish.)
être bien, élever l'enfer (Pardon my French.) Stammi bene. Scatenare l'inferno. (And Italian.)
Andrew Quarantino Barbano is a 54-year Nevadan and editor of,,, BallotBoxing.US,,,, and among others. He is a longtime member of the Reno-Sparks NAACP and Sparks-based Communications Workers of America Local 9413/AFL-CIO. As always, his comments are entirely his own. Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Sparks Tribune since 1988.


Breaking News —> Masks work!

If you strike a king
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 6-28-2023

Invasion of the Chicken Pluckers
Gov. Ron DeSatanist soils the Silver State at GOP testiclefest
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 6-21-2023 / Expansions in blue

Politicians with nothing to hide
The Barbwire Nakedly & Unabashedly Announces Its New Fleshing Out Follytix Forum—>
Barbwire by Andrew Quarantino Barbáno
Expanded from the Sparks Tribune 6-14-2023
More naked reality

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Why the science is clear that masks work
By Zeynep Tufecki / The New York Times / 3-10-2023

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$75 dead or alive: Still crazy after all these years
A mass murderer becomes famous on TV a century later

How come nobody noticed 'til now?
Barbwire by Andrew Barbáno
/ Expanded from the 2-21-2018 Sparks Tribune

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory owners Max Blank and Isaac Harris. Is not Mr. Harris eerily familiar to television junkies?

From the Emmy-winning opening slate of the blockbuster "Cheers" television series. Combined with its "Frasier" spinoff, it lasted 20 years.
The "shirtwaist kings" immigrated from Russia and made a fortune manufacturing "Gibson Girl"-style blouses. (Photo, "The American Experience"/PBS)
The Emmy-winning opening slate of the "Cheers" television series before the "slate" of creators is superimposed. Looks like Mr. Harris' dead ringer (at left) is having a bloody good time.

"Who ya gonna believe, me or your own eyes?" Chico Marx disguised as Groucho Marx in "Duck Soup" (1933)
Back to the story of the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist holocaust

Triangle tragedy recalled as requiem
"The Fire in My Mouth," a new oratorio by Pulitzer honoree Julia Wolfe, premiered with the New York Philharmonic Jan. 24

By Michael Cooper / The New York Times 1-23-2019

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Copyright © 1982-2023 Andrew Barbano

Andrew Barbano is a 54-year Nevadan, editor of and; and former chair of the City of Reno's Citizens Cable Compliance Committee. He is the executive producer of Nevada's annual César Chávez Day celebration and a longtime member of the Reno-Sparks NAACP. As always, his opinions are strictly his own. E-mail

Barbwire by Barbano moved to Nevada's Daily Sparks Tribune on Aug. 12, 1988, and has originated in them parts ever since.
Whom to blame: How a hall-of-famer's hunch birthed the Barbwire in August of 1987
Tempus fugit.

Betty J. Barbano
2-7-1941 / 12-27-2005

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