Archive for the ‘consumerism’ Category

Simple pleasures…

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

I find the simplest things in life are most enjoyable. I love reading, writing, good conversations. I love researching my ancestry and the ancestry of those I care about. I like to read the stories of yesteryear, tales of Scottish lords and English peasants. I treasure time spent with people I care about in whatever way I can get it. I like to laugh and love and live. I have been on the quest for meaningful interactions with others. Genuine engaging conversations. Talking of everything that is real and avoiding that which is not. I find comfort in the warmth of silence enveloping the end of a satiating conversation. I like to read aloud to those who will listen and I love to be read to, particulary whilst falling asleep.

This past year I have returned to simpler motivations. I want those I care about to know why I care, why I enjoy their company, why I choose them to be in life. I also want to steer clear of overconsumption, of wasteful spending, of collecting things I do not need. I decided for birthdays to get creative, to get personal. I will make compilations of music that are thought out and relevant. I will make gifts and cards that say, “you are important to me”. I will give my time, my attention, my thoughtfulness. I will share of myself more. I have already started this… with the birthday Cardis (Tardis), handmade Valentines, a homemade custom birdfeeder and handwritten journals filled with descriptive reasons I like a person. I’ve jotted down things people have done that made me smile or feel warm and fuzzy. I’ve typed them up on notecards and filled them in small boxes…sharing them like love-filled recipes of how to appreciate the more important things in life.

It is time to return to a time where people mattered more than things. And I don’t mind being in the forefront of this change.

CEO’s are overcompensated

Sunday, December 14th, 2008

I think Hasbro and Mattel should build more factories in the U.S. and pay a proper living wage to their employees. They can cut their CEO’s salary — sheesh! That guy makes over 5.2 billion dollars after all his “extras”. Even without his extras (bonuses, stocks etc.), he makes $800,000. I hardly think he does that much work. I am not a socialist but I do believe the cut throat capitalism we are practising right now is not work, obviously. Look, Brian Goldern, if you would give up some of your excessive pay, open some American factories and pay some American workers…but not necessarily close all the Chinese factories…then this would create jobs and boost the economy. When workers have jobs, they buy crap, your crap even. So, stop being greedy and do what it is right. Are Chinese people buying toys with their paychecks? I don’t think so. The majority of the toys on our shelves (9 out of 10) are made in China. So, the Chinese are underpaid. Certainly…this saves you a few duckets than you gladly pocket. However, what do they do with the rest of their paycheck? Pay their bills IN CHINA, shop IN CHINA, buy food IN CHINA, pay retailers IN CHINA. So, it is helping their economy and ours is suffering. Now, we are heading quickly into a depression. And we are not buying, not even the cheap lead-coated crap from China. So, you lose too. How about some real corporate social responsibility. When a society is thriving, it helps you too. Get it?

I reaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy think for the next 4 years we should have mandatory soft capitalism. If you gauge our eyes out with prices which will line your pockets, you pay exorbitant taxes. The more you charge, the more you pay, exponentially. If you are responsible and charge what you need to cover your costs and get some profit, then you are rewarded with tax breaks. See how simple this would be? No one needs to be making $800,000 a year, let alone $5.2 million. Gah!

When will one of these companies start making the right decisions, decisions that benefit everyone? We will never get out of a depression unless we fix the problems that caused it: deregulation, corporate greed with no restraints, no employee protection, price gauging, and job loss. We need to keep jobs in our country and in other countries, we could do this if we were more savvy than greedy.

Invisible Ingenuity

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

I love books. This is an understatement. I am a bibliophile. And being such leaves my immediate surroundings in imminent danger of being overrun with them. I have books everywhere. Piles and stacks all over. I have bookshelves filled. I have makeshift bookshelves. I have even turn my fireplace mantle into a bookshelf. And recently, I found the most exciting inventions…the invisible bookshelf. I love it. I have five so far. I have ordered more. And I intend on ordering even more.

It is really simple but ingenious. It is an L-shaped metal thing you screw into the wall. You use the cover of a book to hold the books up and then stack x amount of books on top of the first book. Voila! Instant invisible shelf. It appears as if the books are floating on the wall. =) A magical bookshelf, indeed.

Here are some of mine (albeit, the photographs aren’t really good…):

And they are uber cheap! Space-saving, ingenious bookshelves! I love them. You can get them in two sizes: Small and Large. The small covers most books. The large, really does hold LARGE books. =) You can get them here.

Sarah Palin takes gloves off

Sunday, October 5th, 2008

Reap what you sow, McCain.

It would seem McCain doesn’t want to discuss the economy anymore. He would rather “turn the page” on this issue (he clearly doesn’t understand how important it is right now) and start his ridiculous lying campaign against Obama again. This is stupid. McCain WILL NOT and CAN NOT help us economically, he is corrupt. He was almost convicted once of an economic crime at what he described as the lowest point of his life. He is not trustworthy.

Read all about it for yourself.

THE KEATING SCANDAL

The ABC’s of the Keating Scandal

Corporate Socialism

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008

I agree with some of the Republicans! Write that down, I am certain you will not hear it often.

The bottom line for this $700 billion bailout is, IF it happens, it needs to have some measure of protection for taxpayers. Congress reiterated this over and over this morning. I was proud of them for speaking up. And found myself nodding in agreement when many of the Republicans spoke.

I know we are all frightened about the financial issues we are facing but making fear-based decisions is simply irresponsible. We need to ensure we make a sensible decision in a timely manner. So, if you are jumping out of your seat, itching for Congress to hurryup and approve this $700billion… take a breath. Think. There is no proof or guarantee that this measure is going to work. It is led by two of the idiots who got us into this financial mess. WHY SHOULDN’T WE AT THE VERY LEAST ASK FOR SOME FAILSTOP MEASURES?

We should NOT bail out these irresponsible corporations. Bottom line. We should NOT give them the $700 billion. Breathe deeply, relax. Think. Please!

Why not attack the problem from the other side? Why not give out $700 billion to the US people losing their homes? Pay their bills to the banking industries. Wouldn’t that make more sense? TO help the people with their own money rather than these corporations.

If this is such a good idea, why does it not have any provisions? At the very least, before we bail out these corporations with no guarantee that it will even help, we should get the following provisions:

1) Remove the sole discretionary clause, giving all authority to Paulson:

“Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.”

Paulson is one of the people who is arguably responsibly for allowing this situation to get so out of control. Why are we continuing to allow him to even meddle in our Country’s purse? Slap his hand and say, “NO!” Let someone responsible lead this disgusting bail out. We should, at the very least, be watching our federal bank book. We are the ones making the deposits.

One man should not be in control of that much money. That would be giving the Secretary of the Treasury more power than even the President, at least financially. This is NOT a good idea.

2) Remove the clause that prevents judicial review.

If there is no scam in this, if there is no tomfoolery, why include a provision refusing judicial review? If we are mopping up a mess made by the greed and irresponsibility of financial institutions with a mop made of our hard-earned money, WE HAD BETTER HOLD THE JANITORS ACCOUNTABLE! PERIOD. In every single manner.

3) We need to include a measure to limit how much executives are paid:

They ran their corporations into the ground. Why should they get paid for this? How much do we pay people in public welfare? Why not give the CEO’s, who were irresponsible with the corporations, the same monthly amount we give to those on public welfare? I mean the logic behind the amounts are based on the minimum amount of money needed to survive in our country. Why should these CEO’s be paid more than that? If we are trying to “save” the economy, why don’t we spend the money wisely? Instead of overpaying CEO’s who got themselves (and us) into this mess in the first place with their irresponsible, greedy business practices and channel our money into tangible investments (alternative energy, health care, etc.). We definitely need a provision not allowing ridiculous compensation packages to these CEO’s.

4) Ensure what these people will be doing with our money is a matter of public record, available for all of us to monitor completely. COMPLETE TRANSPARENCY.

They should not be allowed to continue doing business as usual. Look where it got them and us.

5) We need to add provisions to help people in danger of losing their homes.

These failing financial institutions and the mortgage crisis are inextricably linked. We must address the initial problems, not just throw money at it. If you cut off your arm, you certainly would not just throw bandages at it. You would stop the blood loss, sew it up, then let it heal.

This bailout is nothing more than financial welfare, with the standards of living skewed for unsuccessful CEO’s.

The current Administration did such a poor job economically with their deregulation policies, their corporate tax breaks and their direct assistance to these greedy corporations, while ignoring the needs of the consumers and citizens and all of these irresponsible, corporate interest policies ultimately lead us into this crisis. So, if we are going to bail the financial institutions out, the least we could is protect the everyday people as well.

6) We need to add provisions about regulating the financial institutions.

7) Add in a provision for taxpayers to gain financially, if and when the corporations start making money.

If they want us to finance the corporations, they should compensate us. Stocks, shares etc., period.

8) Add in a provision to ensure there are no “sweetheart deals”.

Ensure that no one who was paid to make this decision is in charge of the money. No leaving the US government and going to work for Wall Street. We want there to be no ties. Corporate lobbyists have lined the pocket of too many of our politicians. They have owned the Administration for at least 8 years and look where it has gotten us.

I vote no. And if the “yes” votes win, then they had better stood up for the American people by adding in, at the very least, the previous 8 provisions.

What happened to the REAL Republicans?

Monday, September 22nd, 2008

Gone are the day of the Republicans who reallyloved our country, more than money. Gone are the day where our country meant more than the lobbyist, more than the funds shoved in pockets by the military industrial complex. War is doubleplus bad folks. Here is a speech from the last true Republican President, Dwight Eisenhower, warning against the military industrial complex.

Since him, the Republicans in office should more aptly have claimed the Corporatist Party. And the everyday people who vote Republican should claim the same party under the United Federation of Sheeple. They seem not to be able to think or reason amongst themselves. McCain has flipflopped not positions he espoused twenty years or even ten…though he has changed those too but rather he is flipflopping on positions he had two months ago, two weeks ago, two days ago. He is saying whatever he can to win the election. What is most infuriating are the masses who seem incapable of calling him on his crap.

Look, if Obama suddenly wanted to give corporations tax breaks and take away our civil liberties or started riding around on tank declaring the victory in a war he plans to continue, I would NOT stand behind him. I would NOT vote for him. Some change, some flexibility is necessary. Obama has demonstrated his entire career a reasonable amount of flexibility. This is not the same flexibility McCain is demonstrating. His only demonstrable flexibility is in stretching the truth in commercials and townhall meetings to fit what he thinks you want to hear, what Obama has been saying along. So, if suddenly his views are coinciding with Obama’s views, why again are you not voting with Obama instead? The original maverick? The guy who came up with the plan instead of the guy who stole it?

How many times will McCain conveniently adopt a stance he has never voted for and has heard Obama advocate? This is no more than cheap ploys, mimicking the other guy because he makes sense. But I ask, “where’s the beef” in McCain’s empty words? And I am shocked that more Republicans are not doing the same. What happened to you Republicans? SHEESH! Bring back the old-time real Republicans…they would never stand for someone because of one issue. Republicans are so narrow these days… it is all about getting their sold-out party into office or generally falls to one issue-voters. That is why they STILL can’t get their heads around an idea that Hillary supporters are not Palin supporters, afterall she is a woman. Their reasoning for supporting their candidate is flawed, weak, ridiculous.

I will save for tomorrow the topic of the weak-knee’d, pansy Democrats of today. It is time to stand up and call a greedy, corporatist LIAR (AKA JOHN MCCAIN) exactly what he is… a greedy, lying, power hungry Corporatist. He is not Republican, not a real Republican anyways. And Democrats must come to realize, they can’t just wait for the new Republicans to do the right thing. Gone are those days!

In case you are interested in real politics. I am posting the transcript of the speech (in the youtube video above) below.

(more…)

Fundamentals and Economics by Magpie

Sunday, September 21st, 2008

Make, sell and buy products. Starring in the Economy are consumers, manufacturers, corporations (often the latter two are one in the same) and, in today’s world, a whole mess of middle-men. You must make products (companies who hire workers to produce products) to sell (requiring stores, businesses etc. and workers) and then people (consumers) to buy these products. There are many theories on how to best manage an economy. We keep hearing about the fundamentals of our economy being strong or weak, depending on who you listen to…sadly enough. Let me tell you my thoughts on the real economic fundamentals politicians should be focused on right now.

Before people will shop or spend their money, they need the following things:

1. A roof over their head
2. Food on their plates
3. Electricity (yes, most of us have grown accustomed to that in this country)
4. Good health (which requires sufficient healthcare)
5. Gas/energy to get to and from work
6. Employment to provide the money necessary for the above

And finally…

7. Extras (these come after the fundamentals are procured).

However, if people cannot pay their mortgages (because they are victims of predatory lending born of the current Regime’s deregulation polices or because they have less money from the price-gouging of corporations on groceries, gas, electricity etc. or because they cannot find a job or are laid off or because corporate responsibility has flown out the window) and if they can’t buy enough groceries to feed their children or to pay for gas to get to and from work, or they fall ill and cannot get the proper care necessary for themselves, their children or their aging parents…then they will not be able to buy other stuff. Get it? If they cannot buy the “other stuff” then businesses suffer. Then businesses must cut jobs and/or employee benefits. And thus we spin towards a depression. You need only to examine the current financial situation to see this vicious cycle in action.

The fundamentals of economy are housing, groceries, gas/energy, and healthcare. This is true for the average American. Perhaps because the rich do not have the same concerns and they may think the fundamentals are different. However, if you ask the everyday American what is important to them, when they say economy, this is to what they are referring. They want their family’s basic needs met and to have a little extra money at the end of the day to buy bright and shiny things; to save a little extra for retirement and college funds; and to leave their children a little better off than they were left themselves. These are the fundamentals with which politicians should be concerned.

McCain, at best, gives lip service to these areas of the economy. He believes the fundamentals are strong. Oh, he is changing his tune the past week but if you didn’t know last week, we were in trouble… and it took a 500 point drop in the market and a ten point drop in your campaign lead to get it, you probably are not the most economically-savvy person for the Presidency. He does not truly understand what is fundamental for most of us. Simple enough mistake but simply too costly for everyday people to support his very different economic fundamentals by voting for him.

His idea of helping to immediately reduce the price of oil and groceries is to “send a strong message1 to the oil producing countries, as well as the oil companies, that prices are too high. Um, I think they already know this. They know they have us by the energy-throat and they are taking advantage of that. We need their services and they know it. Hrmmm… isn’t that the deregulated-corporate way McCain is in favor of? Doesn’t anyone else find it ironic that US oil companies are making windfall profits2 while the rest of us head into a economic (and quite possibly an emotional) depression? And yet, there is nothing in McCain’s plan to stop this corporate tomfoolery. No regulations? No consumer-assistance? No way! He is all about Corporate-welfare and idle threats. Neither will bring the prices down for us. Businesses want to make money. If they know you need a product, they will demand your first born, if they are allowed (READ DEREGULATION). But I will not even get started on how deregulation brings about corporate monopolies, resulting in the necessity to bail corporations with federal funds, ahem…AIG, which negates those greedy mongrels every argument about “welfare”. The difference between Republican spending and Democrat spending is who gets helped and why. Republicans wish to ensure the good “welfare” of corporations. Democrats wish to ensure the good “welfare” of people. Which category do you fall under? Which is more important to you?

McCain also plans to increase the value of the dollar (no mention of HOW he will do this btw, simple a pretty promise with no intellectual support) and theoretically this is supposed to reduce the price of oil. The idea that the value of the dollar directly affects the cost of oil is not that straightforward nor is it accurate.3 I understand it is easier to just believe what they are saying because it is frightening to think they may not have our best interest at heart after all, but WAKE UP AND THINK FOR A CHANGE!

What about McCain’s HOME PLAN? He plans on helping 200,000 to 400,000 homeowners facing foreclosure. That is nice, isn’t it? What about the other 1.8 to 1.6 MILLION homeowners facing foreclosure? Oh and his HOME plan EXCLUDES those who were victims of the predatory lending he advocated through deregulation, in the first place. How will this help the housing crisis?

And how will John McCain pay for his proposed tax cuts? His plan is to halt all discretionary spending for an entire year. Let’s see what falls under discretionary funding. The following programs (and this is not the majority, just some I found)…

Office for Victims of Crime
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Mental Health Facilities/Services
Drug and Alcohol Facilities
K-12 Education Budgets
Health Research
Housing
AmeriCorps (Full-time Community Service program)
HeadStart/ECEAP (Pre-school)
Rural Housing Services and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

So, as far as I can tell he plans on cutting programs, such as mental health, educational funding (K-12 people), crime victims assistance, etc. It seems this is not going to benefit the American people. No, no, he plans on cutting these programs rather than corporate taxes. Hrm, which will benefit you or harm you? Oops sorry Sally Victim, that guy who tortured you and your daughter… yea, he got out of prison today but you won’t know about it because that program was cut for a year. Oh, yea those pesky science labs in your 7th grade class… oops, those are gone too.

Perhaps the Obama campaign should start asking how McCain plans on funding his wars (Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia, Iran…etc.) Or his corporate welfare… including the 3trillion dollars of debt for bailing out AIG. It was the deregulation policies that he (and others like him–like Bush) emphatically endorse which got us into this mess in the first place.

In theory, it sounds like a perfect plan to deregulate corporations. Theoretically, they will begin to flourish without extra costs and this will have a trickle down effect. The wealth they are making hand-over-fist, theoretically, will spill down to the rest of us, leaving lots of wealth for us to pick up at their feet. Now, this is quite possibly accurate in some respects. For example, it is true the deregulation policies have helped a lot of big corporations make a lot of money. However, these same corporations will step on anyone and everyone ensuring no one does take any of the trickled-down wealth. They hire middlemen to collect and return as much of that as possible. The middlemen’s reward for doing so? He too can keep a little of the trickled-down wealth but rest assured he’s not getting rich, he’s in foreclosure so he reallyneeds that extra money. And he’ll do just about anything to ensure he gets, including voting against his own best interest. This is where the majority of McCain voters are… at the feet of corporate America, groveling, begging, complaining, screaming, hoping they will survive financially. But are they?

When the corporations start to shove the excess money into their pockets, the windfall, record profits (as are seen with the oil companies for example, even while we are amidst an energy and economic crisis), where are the majority of the rest of us in this wealth-blizzard they are experiencing? Are we reallyseeing a trickle down effect? Or are they simply kicking us to bankruptcy, while lining their offshore bank accounts to ensure they do not have to pay taxes on their wealth?

And while we hear so much about pork-barrel spending… does anyone even really know what the helinski that means? They assume it is liberal spending on personal welfare, a concept attached to some deceptive, lazy person milking the system while everyone else works so hard. This is a fallacy. Look, liberals don’t want to reward lazy people. They simply believe the government should help people, citizens, not corporations. What is it you want to see your tax dollars spent on? The Republicans try to make it sound like liberals or Democrats waste your money. What in tarnation are they doing themselves with the money? Did the government bail us out, did it spend our tax money ensuring our children had a good education or that our homes were saved? Or did it get us into 3trillion dollars worth of additional debt to save us or a corporation? The Republicans do not save us money, they simply twist the facts to make it look as if the spending of money on people is somehow ludicrous and wasteful. How is spending tax money on taxpayers wasteful? But they will use an isolated account of one system-moocher to invoke the irritation you feel each time you pay a significant amount of your check towards taxes to throw you into a blind flurry about the excessive use of government funds used by the Democrats. This is nonsense. Do a little research. I dare you. Go look up the annual amount of corporate fraud.

The results of deregulation are a battered economy, a mortgage crisis, disproportionate wealth distribution; and disgruntled, disenfranchised customers left with no recourse…forced to deal with companies who couldn’t care less about them as individual consumers or even as groups of consumers. These corporations have fewer and fewer laws to bind them to the consumer, to stop them from taking advantage of the American people when we can least afford it. Smaller companies run by everyday people are gobbled up by the bigger companies and consumers are forced to do business with those 1 or 2 corrupt, multi-national conglomerates. And the corporations know this, anticipate their level of service being less than par and raise their prices accordingly. They know we are in need of oil, energy, communications, health care services, medicines, etc.

So you tell me…who has been and continues to prosper financially while the rest of us suffer? Drug companies, military industrial complexes, communication services, oil companies, electric companies, health-care insurance providers…etc. Saving money, second only to making money, motivates companies to outsource customer service, not only to other countries but simply to other companies or departments of their own corporation who do not care at all about consumers. Consumers get aggravated, but with no where to turn, are stuck getting their needs met by these corporate vampires. Diversity in the marketplace should buffer this, in theory, but in reality, with the deregulation of the big guys, the diversity in the marketplace is dwindling or simply not a realistic, viable option anymore.

Deregulation is not the answer. McCain supports deregulation emphatically. McCain is NOT the answer. We’ve seen what these policies have done for the people. We’ve seen what it has done for the business market. NOTHING good. NOTHING GOOD HAS COME FROM THE PAST EIGHT YEARS, unless you own an oil, telecommunications, financial or pharamceutical company. Since most of us do not, the tangible realities of their theoretical trickle-down effect are staring us in the face in the form of a mortgage crisis or a 500 point drop in the stock market, in the disappearance of our life’s savings, in the bill sitting on the table of the woman who worked every day since she graduated college only to lose her health care insurance a month after being diagnosed with cancer.

Enough is enough. Stop asking how Obama will pay for his economic plan when his includes helping improve the every day lives of the people funding the Federal Budget. Start asking how and why John McCain would rather focus on corporate welfare and illegitimate, unnecessary wars to the detriment of the everyday people, with our tax dollars. If he and Bush and the other billionaires want to rescue corporations or wage wars all over the world…let them do it with their own money. Our tax dollars should help US have a better life. Where was the referendum on bailing out these corporations? Where is the trickle-down effect from the deregulation policies?

Think people, think.

  1. http://www.johnmccain.com/Images/Issues/JobsforAmerica/briefing.pdf []
  2. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/02/01/exxon-posts-record-profit_n_84463.html []
  3. http://www.econbrowser.com/archives/2007/10/does_dollar_wea_1.html []

The day the Pearberry came to town…

Friday, August 1st, 2008

Life can be so rewarding!

I find happiness in the smallest things like a smile or a laugh or a hilarious off-the-cuff joke. And in seeing Bath and Body Works carry my favorite item. I routinely receive emails from them tempting me to visit their site; offering this new scent or that old scent. Each time I visit to see what new products they offer, I check to see if they have the one thing I know I love from them. Yet, they consistently seem to be out of my  “Pearberry Antibacterial Hand Soap.” This has been an on-going issue for about 2 years now.

Today they sent me an email advertising a 5 for $15 or 7 for $20 sale on antibacterial hand soap. I, of course, went through the motions to see if they had any Pearberry and, much to my surprise, THEY DO!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I ordered a bunch! Hip! Hip! Hooray! Now I can relax about my hand hygiene for awhile. =)

The end of my supply…

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

So, my Pearberry supply is dwindling. OH NO! Whatever will I do. I am down to six and 1/5th bottles. I know this doesn’t seem extremely low but it is too low for this germaphobic chronic hand-washer. I decided to go to the Bath & Body website to see if there happened to be any in stock, just in case, and much to my chagrin, there is not.

(See evidence below)

It is almost always “unavailable”. This is aggravating. (See related post)

*CRY*

Is this part of a secret and involuntary antibacterial-addiction Recovery Program? Or is it a Corporate-conspiracy to ration out the best-smelling soap in a devious attempt to drive up prices? Or is it simply poor planning on the part of Bath and Body?

Whatever it is…I fear this pearberry-drought will outlast my measly six-bottle supply and I will be forced to use Kitchen Lemon, which is not sooo bad but it is a distant 2nd to my sweet Pearberry or worse…BAR SOAP!

*GASP*

Disappearing goods…

Monday, June 23rd, 2008

I am a rational person, usually. I try not to take things too personal. Unpleasant happenstance and coincidences are not some form of punishment bestowed upon me by some benevolent being. However, it does seem there is a conspiracy against consumers by the product pushers. It seems whenever you find something you really like, it gets discontinued. One could argue… that I am just sooooooooooooo unique, everything I like is oddball and doesn’t sell well but this is not the case.

Take for example my favorite handsoap (and I don’t say this lightly as I am a chronic-handwashing-germaphobe), Deep Cleansing Pearberry Antibacterial Handsoap from Bath and Body Works. They have it in stores only twice a year and it sells out almost immediately. The salespeople explain they just cannot keep the pearberry on the shelf, it is simply too popular. However, when you ask why they don’t carry it all year round; they respond, “because it is being discontinued.”  Why then is a product that is so popular, you cannot keep it on the shelves, being discontinued? Why must I wait for the two sales a year it is available, hope to get to the store in time to buy a load of them just to have enough to last me until the next sale? Yes, this is what I am reduced to doing, buying in bulk. This is from my latest internet shopping trip:

Pearberry Antibacterial Hand Soap

and this is not even the entire order!!! I hope it will last me until the next ‘sale’ comes along. I didn’t even make it to the store in time. Every local store in an hours driving distance was out by the first day. I had to order these on the internet.

Now, I am by no means a marketing genius. Nor do I have a degree in Business. Can someone explain to me how it makes any sense for a business to discontinue such a popular product? Popular products = sales. Simples simple to me. I mean, I get the old ‘bait-and-switch’ but come on… do you really think we are this stupid? Do they really think if we pay $3-$5 for an 8oz bottle of fancy handsoap because we enjoy the way it cleans our hands and smells…that we will just buy a different fragrance, if they don’t sell the one we like? Do they really think if they make 742 other smells that do not sell, they can force us into buying them because they limit the one we like? It is not likely. It is more likely we will take our business elsewhere.

JUST GIVE US OUR PEARBERRY ALL YEAR ROUND AND EVERYONE WILL BE HAPPY. You will make money, we will have clean, excellent smelling hands… it is a no-brainer. And how about this crazy idea… if you can’t shove Wild HoneySuckle into our baskets or coerce us to buy SweetPea because you aren’t currently selling the scent we want, why not discontinue the new and unmovable scents and make more of what does sell? It is not rocket-science here. 

We, the consumer, are not as fickle as we are made out to be. The majority of us would stick with a company, if it would stick with us. We like something, don’t change and don’t discontinue it. Marketing departments spend billions of dollars every year trying to get their finger on the pulse of the consumer. Well, let me save you some money and tell you… we like what we like and we aren’t falling for the bait-and-switch. Make something we like, we’ll buy it. Then, the next part is simple: keep making it and we’ll keep buying it. Stop making it or change it and we’ll stop buying it. It is really that simple.

Ask Coca-Cola. Coke has been around a long time and when they changed their product… how happy were their consumers? Yes, well, back to the old formula it went. Coca Cola was intelligent in this way. They tried something new, it didn’t work out, they realized their mistake and went back to what the consumer wanted. And they make money hand-over-fist. Logic dictates this successful business plan. Who is dictating the corporations today?