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Posts Tagged ‘Freedom’

As a consumer, I often become overrun with the feeling of helplessness when it comes to my experiences with purchasing items for my everyday family needs. While I use to focus on the perspective of my being a black male and how that affects what type of “consumer experience” I usually have, lately I have come to understand that my race is only part of the problem.

Admittedly, I’m a casual observer. Have been my whole life. The difference today is that my viewpoint on life is so much more matured and clearly focused at this point as compared to how I “processed” things in my 20’s and 30’s. I now observe that it is not only myself who gets shitty service from today’s corporate retail and professional establishments, but that just about EVERYONE gets it.

Today I can pinpoint the problem immediately, while in the past I was just baffled.

Its the stock market.

In my way of seeing things, the stock market drives shopping experiences. I would say that 99% of major retail establishments that are nationwide entities are public companies, meaning their shares are traded on the stock market. Essentially, investor dividends dictate what type of service the employer provides to the public. It’s all about posting a higher profit then the previous quarter to keep investors happy. Basically, keep costs down and profits up…at all costs. Even if customer service suffers.

These public corporations control damn near EVERYTHING we as Americans do on a daily basis. The stock holders that control them are only a tiny fraction of the American population. Where I used to be in control with choice, that has dwindled due to the weakening of the federal governments enforcement of anti-trust laws. Who weakened them…Republicans, fueled by donations thru lobbying firms funded by who…large corporations (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/09/business/09antitrust.html?_r=1).

When this happens, the consumer gets arrogant corporate mindsets that essentially say, take it or leave, we don’t care because we know our only other competitor (if there is one) offers the same shitty customer service at essentially the same shitty price.  And go ahead and complain to your federal government… we’ve got the congressmen and senators in our back pockets.
Essentially, “Crony Capitalism” has eroded our freedoms and most Americans have not even noticed.

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