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San Fran socialists killed historic Anchor Brewing: critics

Jun 02, 2024

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It survived Prohibition, the Great Depression, two world wars, and even the great San Francisco earthquake of 1906 — but it couldn’t withstand the woke left.

As drinkers mourned this week’s sudden closure of Anchor Brewing Co., the 127-year-old company that pioneered America’s craft beer industry, critics blamed the stunning collapse on socialist activists who drove labor costs to unsustainable heights.

“You schmucks ruined a legacy business,” San Francisco political commentator and former mayoral candidate Richie Greenberg told The Post. “Your union fought for 25% raises, and now your members are getting 100% of zero. Bravo.”

Japanese beer giant Sapporo, which has owned the San Francisco mainstay — beloved for signature brews like Anchor Steam Ale and Anchor Liberty Ale — since 2017, said the brand was crippled by sales losses during the COVID-19 pandemic, while angry workers faulted Sapporo’s mismanagement and poor marketing.

But locals such as Greenberg told The Post that a cadre of Democratic Socialists of America drove the push to unionize Anchor’s modest 61-member workforce — in hopes of inspiring the masses to “take on the power of capital.”

“This union was not prioritizing the long-term health of the business,” said Greenberg. “These Democratic Socialists really don’t care about the workers they’re getting involved with. They only want power, and more membership in their screw-loose cult.”

In 2020, the Anchor Union’s first contract kicked hourly pay up by as much as 28% — a substantial bump that exacerbated the company’s pandemic slump.

“We’re sad, we’re defeated, we want to be left alone,” the union tweeted Thursday.

But pay and working conditions were secondary to union organizer Brace Belden, a self-proclaimed Marxist-Leninist and DSA member who recruited his comrades to canvass for the union drive.

“We didn’t just dedicate ourselves to this project for the sole reason of starting a union,” Belden crowed in 2019. “Campaigns spearheaded by socialist labor organizers … give us a foundation for a labor movement ready to take on the power of capital.”

“Fighting white supremacy and organizing the rights of all workers go hand in hand,” Shanti Singh, a Belden ally and DSA leader, tweeted in 2020 to celebrate the Anchor Union’s contract vote.

The union’s triumph turned Belden — who had previously won national attention for an ill-starred stint fighting in the Syrian Civil War — into a lefty darling.

He scored a visit from Bernie Sanders during the 2020 presidential campaign, then parlayed his heightened profile into a top-ranked podcast, TrueAnon, which now earns him more than $1.2 million a year from Patreon subscribers alone.

“Being a socialist grifter really pays,” investor Carol Roth, author of the new book “You Will Own Nothing,” said. “First Bernie Sanders and his three houses, then the BLM organizers, and now this gentleman, who’s doing very well for himself.”

“I’m very sympathetic to the workers, but there also has to be some reality,” Roth said. “And that’s the problem with socialism: in the real world, the economic and math tenets quite literally do not add up.”

The formerly apolitical brewing industry has been roiled by culture-war clashes in recent months after Anheuser-Busch triggered a consumer backlash against Bud Light by partnering with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney — and conservatives cashed in, launching a “woke-free” beer called Ultra Right.