Joe Coors: By His Own Bootstraps!

A fascinating bit of video–we don’t know the exact recorded date but from a campaign speech given by Joe Coors, GOP candidate for CD-7 running against incumbent Rep. Ed Perlmutter.

We would advise some revisions to Mr. Coors’ biography as speechified:


JOE COORS: …Which is now the largest industrial ceramics manufacturer in the world, making thousands of products for thousands of different customers, worldwide, uh, and a 27 and a half year experience that for me started literally in the dirt of the organization, and I worked my way up to supervisor, and general supervisor, and finally vice-president and CEO. But during that time, I learned a lot. And what I learned about was being able to work with all kinds of people from all walks of life to get product out the door. And this experience was very valuable for me, so…

I didn’t start at the top like a lot of people here might think. [Pols emphasis]

The most obvious thing to point out is that Joe Coors is talking about a company called CoorsTek, which is indeed one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of specialty ceramic products. Joe Coors served as CEO of CoorsTek before his retirement in 2000.

So folks, how do you not “start at the top” at a company your family owns? Let’s say you worked in the CoorsTek mail room or production line, or wherever Joe Coors “started out.” Who would you guess is more likely to be the next CEO of CoorsTek? You or somebody named Coors?

Look, we get that there is actually some backstory about running afoul of the “family council,” and having to walk a circuitous path back to the Coors clan’s good graces. But the average voter is going to hear about Joe Coors “working his way up” at CoorsTek, and bust out laughing. Maybe that’s unfair to Joe, but that’s the reality he faces.

27 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. AristotleAristotle says:

    The best kind of correct!

    • baaramewe says:

      I want to see Perlmutter win, and I think he will, but Pols needs to stop the nonsense.

      The “Joe Coors is not a beer, then he must be….” mantra is not funny and doesn’t work. And it makes you look stupid.

      Go after him on his economic policies. Stick to the issues. That’s where we win. This hunt is amature at best.

  2. Middle of the Road says:

    of defending this guy. Truth is, he basically got cast out of his own family for years because he married when he was 20 years old to an 18 year old gal and that was considered a big no no in the family. Big enough to get blacklisted and tossed out of the family’s good graces as well as their businesses.

    His own mom talked about how hard his dad was on him, how unfair his father was and how many years he was on his own before the family would even allow him to work for his own family again. And no, he didn’t come back and start at the top. Not even close.

    I don’t think the average voter knows jack shit about his back story but once you do, I think you’ll be hard pressed not to be somewhat empathetic.

    If your goal was to make him more sympathetic to the average voter, then bravo, Pols. You just achieved the impossible.  

    • rathmone says:

      and you know this from…working on the ceramics assembly line next to him? From reading “Everything I wanted to know about Joe Coors Jr but was afraid to ask”? What exactly, other than his own version told here? I don’t know “jack shit about his back story” but I find it hard to believe that a named Coors ended up as CEO in spite of his family connections.

      • Middle of the Road says:

        and his equally outcast brother Grover. You might want to start with the links in this diary and branch out from there. I’m not in the habit of doing other people’s homework. :)

        • bullshit!bullshit! says:

          Who knew they had archives from 1988 available online for free? That’s pretty cool.

          I’ve got to disagree about defending Coors though. I seriously doubt voters are going to believe Joe Coors would have become CEO of CoorsTek without being a Coors. The stuff about having to grovel before the family council just makes them all seem weird. Even if there is a part of this story that makes you sympathetic, most voters are never going to hear it.

          The other great part of this old story is Joe “apologetically” explaining why homosexuality is an abomination. That really endears me to the man.

          • Middle of the Road says:

            and in another one with just his mom that makes me very okay with not knowing any of these people in person which, if I were wanting Perlmutter to win (which I do), I would be focusing on instead of the slant this diary is taking.  

            • Fidel's dirt nap says:

              job creating manufacturers, whether they are rich or not, whether or not they run the shop or not.  Productive enterprise and honest work, you know, not like shuttering AMPAD and running away with a bag of cash.  There is worse out there than Joe Coors.  Like Doug Lamborn, or Cory Gardner, or…

              That being said I don’t agree with a damn thing the guy believes in, and Ed Perlmutter is a hard working great Congressman and deserves re-election.  I just think demonizing Coors is going to be pretty hard.

            • BlueCat says:

              out of favor for a while in a rich and powerful family and starting from the bottom, a nobody, with nothing.  

              Sorry MOTR. Not that he doesn’t deserve any credit for working hard, yadayada.  It’s not his fault he was born on third base but that doesn’t make crossing home plate a legit home run for him. As a candidate, especially against a mensch like Perlmutter, he’s pretty lame.  

              • AristotleAristotle says:

                It’s true that he was outcast but when push came to shove, he went where the opportunities of his birth were.

                Now, I’m glad that he wasn’t just handed everything on a silver platter. I’m glad he faced adversity and had to prove himself. But I also know how big businesses run more on autopilot than they do innovation, and I know that getting ahead is as much about who you know, if not more, than what you know. And Joe Coors Jr. most likely got to be CEO because he’s a Coors.

                So is it unfair to pick on his mostly true statement here? Not according to the current rules of campaigning, where turning an opponent’s strength into a weakness has resulted in massive gains for a GOP that truly does not have America’s best interests at heart.

                The other day Dave posted a quote about how Dems think this is a college bowl while the GOP knows it’s American Idol. Anyone wanting to stick to the high road is going to lose.

                So everyone needs to decide something. Do you want to be fair? Or do you want to win?

                • BlueCat says:

                  we did work in several Coors homes at a time when the generation younger than this Joe Coors’ generation was graduating from college and starting careers.  While this particular Coors may have been on the outs with the family when he started out, according to what we were told, it was the tradition for all the new young Coors going into the family business to take menial jobs at the bottom for starters so they could learn about the entire operation, connect with the workers (over whom they would one day be in charge) and just as a character building, learning experience.

                  That’s great and they were nice young people but in a situation like that you know it’s just temporary. You know where you’re headed and that it most likely includes the very nice lifestyle in which you were raised. Not at all the same as Joe Nobody starting at the bottom in a menial job and probably staying pretty close for the duration.

          • Colorado PolsColorado Pols says:

            Look, Coors is in a tough spot here because people are going to have a hard time believing this story. It’s not just him — think of any family dynasty business and imagine someone saying they didn’t start at the top. It’s a tough sell, especially in this economy.

          • VanDammerVanDammer says:

            this from the ’88 LA Times story:

            And so, he (Joe) still vividly remembers the day when God first spoke to him directly. He was on a San Diego golf course.

            “I was on the 16th hole,” he says, eyes so full of emotion and innocent trust that only the most heinous cynic would have even thought to smile. “And suddenly I heard this voice saying to me–I can’t explain it clearly,” he pauses, groping for words, “but it was just so real, and I knew it was God. And He said, ‘Go home. Go home.’ “

            that’s a real common man ‘bootstraps’ kinda experience ain’t it?  Yeah, hearing God tell you to high tail it back to the lily-white WASP enclave of Coors’ Golden playground really makes me wanna weep for this asshole.  Guess God’s little fairway epiphany was also where Junior heard also that the gays are an abomination.  Junior is such a dear old gin & tonic country club bigot.  

    • Arvadonian says:

      is it your contention that his last name had no role in getting him that CEO position?

      Perhaps he didn’t “start at the top” but neither did hundreds of other people who worked for Coors various companies, and none of them ended up there.  It is one massive coincidence that his last name happens to be in script across the outside of their buildings.

    • ProgressiveCowgirlProgressiveCowgirl says:

      Electrified by a remark Bill Coors once made that Coors might bring in some hotshot outsider to take charge of Adolph Coors, the two brothers huddled in instant alarm, then made fast tracks to the senior Coors’ inner sanctum, where they made their case in short order–i.e., not only were they experienced, educated and able, but also it would be nothing short of a national business tragedy, practically un-American, to disrupt one of the nation’s last, successful family dynasties by breaking the bloodline chain of command.

      Conquering Scions

      Since Bill Coors was apparently never really serious in the first place, the two young Turks emerged, in short order, the conquering scions–apparently before any of the other brothers were even aware that a changing of the guard was in the works.

      Hmmm… starting at the bottom = convincing dad that disrupting the bloodline is bad news bears?

    • ArapaGOPArapaGOP says:

      Thanks. Joe Coors is an honorable man with a great life story. He’s more than a match for Ed Perlmutter on character and experience.

      • unnamed says:

        He still had a leg up and is running on his name and money, that people know from Coors Brewing.  I’ve known Perlmutter for years and I don’t know anybody who has more character or who has done more for their constituents.

        As for you, considering how much of a sycophant you are towards all things Republican, how much you himm and haw or get angry when confronted with anything that doesn’t jibe with your world view and how much you demonize your opponents and tell lies, you have no business judging anybody’s character because yours is of the lowest caliber.

  3. … when my crazy family banished me for some ridiculous unwritten transgression until I learned to work for my inherited wealth in a company my father owned. Oh wait, that never happened. But maybe I’m the strange one here.

    By the way, does anyone else imagine the Coors “Family Council” as some sort of Legion of Doom? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L

  4. Half Glass FullHalf Glass Full says:

    I would like to hear more about that. How did he start “literally in the dirt” of the organization, rather than figuratively?

    I’m concerned, because so far all I’ve heard from Joe Coors is he’s not a beer, but he’s never said “literally.”

  5. Jukefest99 says:

    Joe wasn’t able to use his family’s money and connections for a few years. I could never live without my trust fund for even a few days.  

  6. MADCO says:

    I;m not laughing.

  7. ProgressiveCowgirlProgressiveCowgirl says:

    I do not believe that having to compete against your own family and get them to forgive you is the same as having to compete against the entire world, including all the guys named Coors, without even the start of knowing the Coors family. Being cast out by them means they knew you to begin with and there’s a chance they’ll forgive and embrace you.

    There are probably a dozen non-Coors ordinary guys at CoorsTek who started in the job Coors got when he was forgiven by his family, worked just as hard as he did, tried as hard as he did to climb the ladder, and will never be CEO because their name isn’t Coors.

  8. Libertad 2.0 says:

    Coors refuses to sign Norquist tax pledge, still thinks low taxes are the bees knees

    but it seemed relevant given the diary. Surprised nobody else mentioned it.

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