Looming over any discussion of politics and drinking is the figure of Winston Spencer Churchill. Not only did he lead his nation to victory over the teetotal Adolf Hitler in the greatest war in history, but he did so while consuming magnificent amounts of whisky, champagne, and brandy. He is our standard-bearer and testament that, contrary to the credo of our present nanny state, a fondness for a strong drink or three is not a sign of moral turpitude.

Churchill bestrides Ben Wright’s Order, Order!: The Rise and Fall of Political Drinking like a colossus: carving up Europe at Yalta over martinis with fdr and vodka with Stalin, describing Prohibition as an “affront to the whole history of mankind,” and, quite unexpectedly, trying to ban barmaids from pubs—it was once thought a woman’s presence encouraged...


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