Let’s just get this out of the way: If you like the idea of an American-made aluminum bottle with WWII graphics on it, then you can get it here. It’s built like a P-47 and it will just barely fit in a bicycle waterbottle cage, assuming that said cage is as flexible as the titanium King Cages I use on my bikes.
If you want to read a little bit about morality and empathy and food safety and whatnot, click the jump and let’s go for a ride.
A few weeks ago, I attended the Summer NAMM show in Nashville as a guest of Taylor Guitars. Although I pride myself on my objectivity and standoffishness as an autowriter, when it comes to music stuff I have no such obstacles. The new generation of Taylor “V-Class” acoustic guitars makes pretty much everything else in history obsolete. I own a lot of high-end acoustics, including a Ren Ferguson Gibson “Doves In Flight” and a rosewood Hummingbird that was played by Walter “Magnet and Steel” Egan and a flawless Martin D-41. All of that stuff is for sale now, more or less. I’m putting in my order for the most elaborate V-Class they will sell me — I’m hoping it’s the Milagro Brazilian / Sinker Rosewood PS14ce. I’m currently in possession of a V-Class 614ce Builder’s Edition and at some point I’ll record a demo and/or get a better player to show you what it can do.
Anyway… At NAMM the nice people from WordPress were handing out free “S’WELL” bottles, in this case the champagne 17-ounce, which is a $35 item. I’ve been using it at work; although it’s not as good as my Pelican insulated cup, it’s much smaller for the amount of water or soda that it can hold. I’m fairly impressed with S’WELL so I decided to read up on it. This is Sarah; S’WELL is her company.
In 2010, I launched S’well with the mission to rid the world of plastic water bottles. I believed that if we made a crave-worthy bottle that combined fashion with function, people would stop buying disposable bottles, and we could reduce single-use plastic consumption worldwide. It was an audacious goal, but I believed the world needed S’well.
Seven years later, we are the fastest growing woman-owned company in the country! I am delighted every time I see a S’well in a purse a backpack or a stroller. Our fan base has been built by word of mouth, one enthusiastic user to another. We are making big differences by the amount of plastic we’re keeping out of landfills and our waterways.
I’m also incredibly proud to partner with UNICEF, (RED) and many other important charities. Not only do our bottles work great, they also help accomplish great work.
Thank you for supporting our mission and being part of the journey. Together we can do amazing things!
Let me tell you one of the amazing things that we apparently cannot do: make the S’WELL bottle in the United States. It is (very well) made in China. This isn’t unusual for insulated bottles: Pelican, which is about as USA-focused as you can get, has its insulated cups made in China. And of course YETI, that noted hippie purveyor of Chinese junk, sources their stuff from the Middle Kingdom too.
Let’s assume that Sarah is not just the typical vulture founder/CEO who would sell her parents into slavery to bump her share price an eighth. Let’s assume that she really means what she writes — and let’s also assume that her message resonates with her customer base. What does that say about their so-called Monkeysphere, their zones of empathy?
Five years ago, I explained that the world in general has the following ranking of souls:
Sheryl Sandberg -> VIR Oak Tree -> dead people in plane
If you’ve watched the news and examined the controversies lately, you know that our ruling class has their own ranking of souls:
Valerie Jarrett’s dignity -> the right of children to not be ejaculated on by a 40-something film director
Because Roseanne Barr had to get the immediate chop for insulting VJ, while there are thousands of media people passionately defending the right of James Gunn, who directs and works with children, to say stuff like this:
The Washington Post says it’s wrong to fire someone for making thousands of jokes about fucking children. The Post also said that firing Roseanne had an “undeniable moral authority”.
In other words: You can fuck with little kids, but if you fuck with Obama’s mentor, your ass has got to go. Why is Valerie Jarrett’s freedom from parody so much more important than the sexual innocence of children? Probably for the same reason that the media world said THANK CHRIST IT WAS SOME RANDO WHO GOT SMOKED ON THAT ASIANA FLIGHT AND NOT SHERYL SANDBERG. Some souls are smaller than others. Roman Polanski’s soul is bigger than the soul of the child he forcibly sodomized. He makes great movies. His victim never made a great movie. James Gunn might be fucking three kids a night for all we know but none of those kids made the Obama Era possible.
If you are a parent, you would do well to remember this. Children have small souls. The Establishment is not super-interested in protecting them. Any work in that area needs to be done exclusively by you. Thousands of young women were systematically raped in the UK. The authorities knew about it. They let it happen. And the people who tried to stop it lost everything. The protection of your child is YOUR responsibility. You can’t look away. Not for a minute. Children have small souls.
Back to water bottles. The nice lady from S’WELL probably has a chart in her head that looks like this:
Keeping plastic out of oceans -> the welfare of ocean animals -> a whole of other stuff -> American workers
She feels emotionally closer to the Pacific Ocean than she does to the American worker. I’m not kidding here. That’s real as it gets. She could do whatever it takes to make bottles in the USA and give jobs to a whole small town. Instead, she would rather make a little more money and give more of her profits to (mostly overseas-based) charities.
When I go off on a rant about populist bullshit and future revolution and all the other things that make you, the reader, suspect that I’ve lost my mind, these are the things about which I think. Hollywood directors are allowed to fuck kids, because kids don’t matter. Our distant overclass is more worried about a sea turtle somewhere than it is about American workers.
The Liberty Bottle is aluminum, not steel. So it’s not as durable as the S’WELL, and you need to be more careful with it. The liner of the Liberty Bottle can wear out, at which point you probably don’t want to drink from it anymore. You need to wash it by hand, while the S’WELL can probably go through my Asko dishwasher or the Silkwood shower.
One of these bottles saves sea turles.
The other one gives an American worker a chance to protect his own child.
The choice is yours, friendo.