Ah. More information has been discovered about our test-tube stores.
Store A is the largest store in town, and nine times out of ten offers the lowest prices. Store A is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Handy! The aisles are clean, the workers efficient. Store A extends forgiving return policies, matches coupons, and carries the five other items I need—Band-Aids, black dress pants, votive candles, mint tea, and sugar snap peas.
Store B is closed on Sundays. One of my friends worked there once. If you don’t have your receipt, you probably can’t return it. Store B runs good sales and works hard to be competitive–but generally speaking, name brands are expensive here; store brands taste like cardboard. The cashiers are sweet, conversing in loud voices over your head (with each other) while they’re ringing you up.
Now what do you think?
Eggs are still 99 cents at A, $1.49 at B.
News flash from Meadville, Pennsylvania: More information is forthcoming.
Store A pays thousands of production workers three dollars a day for ten hours spent in overcrowded factories. From this stipend, rent is deducted for sleeping quarters in under-ventilated dormitories nearby—deducted, whether or not employees sleep there.
Do you care? Does it matter?
Anyway, that only happens all the way over in China.
In America, Store A only puts their workers through “boot camp” (quote from a worker I know)—intense pressure to perform and deliver. If you’re on the job, you’re sweating. Store A prohibits labor unions, requires their employees to work off the clock, and pays the kind of wages that require additional thousands of their workers to rely on government assistance for food stamps and healthcare. The cost to society is huge. But hey, they sell eggs for 99 cents a dozen.
Does it matter to you?
Store A crowds out local mom-and-pop businesses in hundreds and thousands of cities across the country. Store A is bigger and better; people flock to its bargains. Store A fattens the wallets of four of the ten richest people in America, whose last name happens to be Walton.
Does it matter?
Store B is one of those mom-and-pop businesses I mentioned, 40 years running, owned and managed by a local Baptist couple.
Does it matter?