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Bise is experienced in business valuation, restructuring, interim management and litigation support.


John R. Bise
Accredited Valuation Analyst
Suite 125-C
Big Spring Summit
100 Church St., SW Huntsville, AL 35801

John Bise email
256.704.4444 main
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256.319.7922 fax

February 29, 2012

On Whiskey . . . and Clear Communication


In the 1950s my old home state of Mississippi still grappled with prohibition. Though “dry” from 1908 to 1966, the state taxed alcohol and elected a statewide tax collector who was once the second highest paid government official in the country by virtue of his legal bounty on collections. Many said that the state would vote dry as long as voters could stagger to the polls.

The subject of legalizing alcohol sales at times put politicians in the uncomfortable spot of declaring positions. In 1952 Noah S. “Soggy” Sweat, a young legislator, ribbed his colleagues with his "whiskey speech." I think you will enjoy it.

My friends, I had not intended to discuss this controversial subject at this particular time. However, I want you to know that I do not shun controversy. On the contrary, I will take a stand on any issue at any time, regardless of how fraught with controversy it might be. You have asked me how I feel about whiskey. All right, here is how I feel about whiskey:

If when you say whiskey you mean the devil's brew, the poison scourge, the bloody monster, that defiles innocence, dethrones reason, destroys the home, creates misery and poverty, yea, literally takes the bread from the mouths of little children; if you mean the evil drink that topples the Christian man and woman from the pinnacle of righteous, gracious living into the bottomless pit of degradation, and despair, and shame and helplessness, and hopelessness, then certainly I am against it.

But, if when you say whiskey you mean the oil of conversation, the philosophic wine, the ale that is consumed when good fellows get together, that puts a song in their hearts and laughter on their lips, and the warm glow of contentment in their eyes; if you mean Christmas cheer; if you mean the stimulating drink that puts the spring in the old gentleman's step on a frosty, crispy morning; if you mean the drink which enables a man to magnify his joy, and his happiness, and to forget, if only for a little while, life's great tragedies, and heartaches, and sorrows; if you mean that drink, the sale of which pours into our treasuries untold millions of dollars, which are used to provide tender care for our little crippled children, our blind, our deaf, our dumb, our pitiful aged and infirm; to build highways and hospitals and schools, then certainly I am for it.

This is my stand. I will not retreat from it. I will not compromise.

Though Soggy’s is a grand example of doublespeak, when you need analysis and counsel, you want clarity. My task is typically to cut through cluttered or sparse data, analyze, then reach and communicate actionable conclusions. Sometimes those are recommendations to a business owner or managers, sometimes expert opinions for planning, tax or litigated matters. Clarity of conclusions and the underlying rationale are critical. I am as clear as possible, while attentive to limitations and ambiguities.

When you need capable analysis and clear communication, call on me.

Warm regards,


John Bise
Accredited Valuation Analyst