Wednesday, June 30, 2004

The Last Refuge Of A Scoundrel

Shortly after Sandy came to live with us, I won a bag of Pets First dog food. I fed that for several months, and then I changed to Nutro. She liked it better, it cost about the same, and I didn’t have to get it 40lbs at a time.

More than two years later, someone from Pets First phoned to say they’d noticed I hadn’t been getting Pets First food, and why was that? I explained that I was feeding Nutro that Sandy liked it and I was going to stick with it.

This guy said, “Well you know Nutro is an American product.”
“Well you know,” I replied, “I’m an American. So I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing.”

“Well I just mean that sometimes it’s good to support a local business,” was his comeback.

Here’s the thing. It’s not as if I have the Nutro trucked in just for my dog. I am supporting a local business that buys Nutro from a Canadian distributor and I pay for it in Canadian dollars. If the only positive thing he could say about Pets First is that Nutro is an American product, I really have to wonder how the hell they are marketing Pets First in Washington State. Give your head a shake, man.

Samuel Johnson’s quote comes to mind: Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. And appropriately enough, Johnson apparently meant false patriotism, not patriotism in general.

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