retail news in context, analysis with attitude

On the subject of the financial services industry lobbying for the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau - the creation of which it has opposed - to start exercising oversight of Walmart as the retail giant gets more and more into various financial services, one MNB user wrote:

Why not let Wal-Mart into banking without the over sight, we did it for the large Investment Firms! Then when they failed we the tax payers bailed them out so the CEO’s and their ilk could get their bonuses. Just think if Wal-Mart gets into banking even more and operates like the rest of them we will get the chance to bail them out! I am sure Wal-Mart sees this as a great opportunity.

Cynicism one could cut with a knife. I love it.

Another MNB user wrote:

The banks are no different than our retailers, manufacturers et al. They will wail against regulation unless it will benefit them somehow. This is no surprise - From individuals to corporations, almost all will seek what they perceive as beneficial to themselves rather than others.  What is right, moral and ethical is, more often than not, overlooked. Welcome to capitalism.

And, from another MNB user:

Let’s see some old fashioned competition in the banking industry from somebody who is hungry. I bet rates stay very competitive!?




Commenting on yesterday’s Eye-Opener about MTV’s 30th anniversary, one MNB user wrote:

I agree with your view of the 30 year anniversary of MTV  because I think they have adjusted over the initial strategy of killing the radio star. When MTV started everyone felt music on radio would be dead except for maybe talk show, ,news and weather. That is so far from the truth, at least not in traditional radio as we know it.  Today thirty years later there are thousands more radio stations out there with Sirius, Pandora etc. as people are not in front of their TV listening to music but now have head phones on their ears hours at a time during the day.  Ironically, MTV has LESS videos but has attracted their target audience with shows like the JERSEY SHORE and other reality shows which is almost like a TV network. Whether you agree or disagree they have survived and in today's world, a thirty year anniversary is an accomplishment in survival no what matter it is...I look forward to the day when we celebrate the 30 year anniversary of MNB...

I’ll be 76 years old if that happens. Oy.




Finally, I got an email yesterday from an MNB user with whom I’ve argued over the years about various issues. One of the subjects about which we have disagreed is the obesity problem, which, I think it is fair to say, he’s felt I was getting overly hysterical about. (He’s used his own kids as an example of children who are overweight but in great shape because they’re extremely active and built like linebackers.) And he’s certainly disagreed with the suggestion from some quarters that parents with morbidly obese children perhaps ought to lose custody because it amounts to child abuse.

But here was yesterday’s email:

OK. I was on vacation last week in the White Mountains of NH at my timeshare. I thought about what was said in the article about children who are overweight. Of course there were a lot of families there, including mine. As I looked around I noticed there were a lot of heavy kids. A LOT!!!! I watched for several days as I sat by the pool watching children jump and have fun and I must admit that the problem with obese children is worse than I thought. Obviously removing children is absurd and anybody that suggests that is a complete moron, but I must admit we have a problem.

I just thought you would like to hear that I am not oblivious to this. Yes I got a little wrangled when someone suggested I was abusing my child because he weighed more than 200 under the age of 15, but that is the dad in me. I would say at least 65% of the kids I noticed were “fat”, maybe not obese but way too heavy. Indeed there is a problem. I just never really noticed before. Have a good day.


I’ve gotten a lot of email over the past 10 years, but it would be hard to think of one that was more meaningful in terms of what I would like MNB to be about.

We talk about issues, big and small. We offer opinions. We argue and debate respectfully. We listen. And maybe we learn something from people with whom we might ordinarily disagree.

This happens to me all the time. It is nice to get an email from someone who seems to have experienced the same thing.
KC's View: