retail news in context, analysis with attitude

I got an email from MNB reader Tom Kroupa over the weekend that drew my attention to a comment posted by Robert Reich - the former US Secretary of Labor and current professor at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley - on his blog:

The most important website this weekend and in weeks to come -- on which the hopes and fears of countless Americans are focused (and the President's poll-ratings depend) -- isn't HealthCare.gov. It's Amazon.com. Even if HealthCare.gov works perfectly, only 5 percent of Americans are in the private health-insurance market to begin with. But almost half of the 140 million Americans now shopping for holiday deals are doing so online, up 20 percent from last year.

The irony is most of what's being sold this holiday season is coming from Asia, which leaves retail jobs as the largest and fastest-growing segment of the U.S. workforce. Yet as online shopping takes over, where will Americans find jobs in the future? The biggest reason holiday deal-shopping is especially frenzied is so many Americans are already stretched to the breaking point (65 percent are now living paycheck-to-paycheck, up from 61 percent last year) that they're more desperate than ever for bargains. And the main reason the President's poll-ratings are falling isn't because of HealthCare.gov. It's because the economy remains lousy for most people. It will likely remain that way: As technology and globalization take over the economy, the U.S. has no national strategy for creating more good jobs in America.


I thought this view worth highlighting because it seems to encompass so much of what we talk about here on MNB …
KC's View: