Pabst's success actually comes from years before the recession.
Pabst managed to pull of a strangely effective word-of-mouth campaign that made the long-declining brand an "ironic downscale chic choice for bike messengers and other younger drinkers who viewed the beer as a statement of non-mainstream taste," reports Crain's.
Let's call a spade a spade: Those "non-mainstream," "younger drinkers" are hipsters.
Usually found smoking European cigarettes and/or cloves, hipsters are known for their despise of anything "mainstream" and their fondness for irony. They listen to bands that no one has ever heard of and start fashion trends that are cool because of their "uncoolness", e.g., trucker hats or vintage plaid shirts.
This is where Pabst Blue Ribbon comes in.
"It's an anti-establishment badge," said a major market wholesaler. "It seems to play to the retro, nonconformist crowd pretty well."
Basically, they got a few people to start promoting it on the basis of being an un-majority beer.
Hipsters, being sheep who have nothing in common but hating the majority, signed up for it.
By doing so, they became the sheepest of the sheep, the consumer who buys a product to create an identity.
That's like hoping to make yourself a social star by buying Dockers, an iPod and a Chevy Volt.
There is no way to be a bigger tool.
Hipsters, you have been pwnt. You should not vote or have political opinions. You should in fact be assigned manual labor tasks and no one should ever listen to you again, as you hipsters have proven you are incompetent.