Bob's Links and Rants

Welcome to my rants page! You can contact me by e-mail: Blog roll. Site feed.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Toledo Shoppers Excited About Kmart-Sears Merger

That headline from WTOL, TV 11 in Toledo, Ohio, says way too much about the state of America—its humanoid shoppers, its complete unwillingness to enforce anti-trust laws, and the pitiful state of our “news” organizations.

To begin with, when the reporter says “Toledo shoppers,” he means TWO Toledo shoppers:
Shoppers are excited about the merger. "Stuff that Sears doesn't have Kmart offers, and stuff that Kmart doens't have Sears offers. I think it's a good idea," said one shopper Scott Platzke.

The deal means shoppers will be able to get tools and other hard goods at Kmart and more clothing at Sears. "I guess that would be good. I mean, I like Sears and they're really reasonable with their prices and Kmart, I'm here most of the, probably five days out of the week, so I think this is probably a pretty good idea," said another shopper Dionne Meredith.
First off—Dionne, why do you need to go to Kmart five days a week? How much crap can you possibly need? Can’t you think of any better way to waste your life? Second—don’t you morons realize that this means there’s a good chance that your favorite Kmart or Sears store will be closing soon? Mergers like this aren’t done for your benefit—they’re done so that large numbers of stores can be closed and workers laid off so that even more of the money can go towards golden parachutes for the scum of the earth who arranged the merger in the first place. Third—the reporter provides zero evidence to support his claim that Toledo shoppers are excited outside of the brain-dead babbling of Scott and Dionne. He makes no mention of having asked hundreds or even several shoppers about the merger. He doesn’t mention the likely impact in terms of reduced competition, store closures, and layoffs—only the thrilling idea that you’ll now be able to buy Kmart crap at Sears and vice-versa.

Well, as I’ve said before: Auntie Trust is dead, and Uncle Sam has gone nuts.

I have started re-reading Affluenza, the book which got me started on my anti-consumerist kick in the first place. It's a very easy and convincing read, and I think if we could somehow get every American to read the book (or have it read to them), we could bring down this corrupt and destructive world economy and replace it with one that would truly be kinder and gentler. I've heard (and asked) the question "Why did so many Americans act against their own economic interests by voting for Bush?" many times in the past two weeks. "Affluenza" points out that Americans act against their own economic interests almost every time they go shopping. They are taking their power (money) and willingly giving it to corporations (stores, banks, manufacturers) in exchange for stuff they probably don't need. The corporations use some of the money to create advertising used to convince the shoppers to buy even more crap.