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Seeking to dismantle its home state’s liquor distribution system, the company has committed $22 million largely for campaign advertising. The total amounts to 65 cents for every Costco membership household worldwide, or more than $6 for every registered voter in Washington.

Costco was outspent during a similar liquor privatization initiative that failed last year, and company officials say they didn’t want to be outspent again.

An opposition group funded largely by alcohol wholesalers has built a campaign account of more than $12 million.

The measure seeks to end the state’s control of liquor sales, allowing private businesses to sell alcohol.


Netflix shares tank amid backlash, defections

NEW YORK — Netflix shares plunged Tuesday after the one-time Wall Street favorite revealed a massive departure of subscribers angered by price increases and other questionable changes at the rental service that was created to make entertainment a snap.

Netflix revealed late Monday that it ended September with 23.8 million U.S. subscribers. That’s down about 800,000 from June and far worse than anything that the company had hinted at before.

And it may get worse. Of its customer defections, Netflix said it expects more in coming months.

The exodus began after the company raised its prices by as much as 60 percent in July. Its website was flooded by letters from livid customers. Many people also canceled service, especially on the DVD-by-mail side.

From wire dispatches and staff reports