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Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:23 AM

Apple, Walmart, and the Payroll Tax

Good Read!

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Apple, Walmart, and the Payroll Tax
George Packer - Feb 20, 2013
http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/comment/2013/02/apple-walmart-and-the-payroll-tax.html


If you were to write a social history of America through the story of business, what would be the most significant companies in the years since the Second World War? I’d divide the period into two: from 1945 to the mid-seventies, I might name General Motors and Woolworth’s. They set the standard for corporate success and behavior during a period that could be called the Roosevelt Republic, when a social contract underwrote American life ...

In the decades since the mid-seventies—you could call it the Reagan Republic, but I prefer the “Unwinding”—the social contract has frayed to the point of disintegration. The middle class has shrunk; tax rates (especially on upper brackets) have plunged; inequality has exploded; the safety net (especially for the poor) has weakened; the old power structure has given way to a more diverse and broad-based upper class based on education; bipartisanship—well, you know; and business culture has become entrepreneurial, fast, risk-taking, and harsh. The trade-off: more freedom, less security.

Two companies have defined the years of the Unwinding: one is Apple, the other, Walmart. Steve Jobs’s genius for design and marketing helped create ...

... America’s vast population of working poor can only get so poor before even Walmart is out of reach.

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Response to Coyotl (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:27 AM

1. Wonder if the author is aware that Walmart SELLS Apple products?

Sure they may use them to push sales to their cheaper products but L doubt they keep all that shelf space without some hope that one of the elite shall decide to shop with them.

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Response to CBGLuthier (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:38 AM

2. one of mal-wart's dirty secrets is they leverage their low cost image to sell high profit items

sure, the eye-catching items at the ends of the isles are extremely low priced and low margin as well.

but of course they're often obviously low quality, so people go into the isles and get something a bit pricier but with more features and such. of course, this is where mal-wart makes a bigger margin as well, but people still get the impression from the item they didn't buy that everything must be a real bargain.

just because it's at mal-wart doesn't mean it's a bargain.

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Response to CBGLuthier (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:41 AM

3. While Wal*Mart is in decline, Apple continues to sell lots of toys to the richer class.

What does that say about economic demographics? The decline impacts part of the population dramatically, the unemployed, and the steady decline in return of worker production is having a dramatic effect on the economy as a whole. Higher minimum wages will alleviate this to some extent, and the direct stimulus will have immediate effect. But minimum wage workers are not the iPhone G4 set yet.

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Response to CBGLuthier (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:52 AM

4. I wonder if the author is aware that the accursed payroll tax cut

gave more money to the rich than it did to the working class.

But then again, their example, seemingly, of a poor person, is a person with a $40,000 a year job.

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