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Livin' large on Maui

March 13, 2013 - Harry Eagar
An MP3, cost say $25-75, would be cheaper than swapping for an iPhone with more memory, seems to me; plus it wouldn't use the iPhone battery. And at four-tenths of an ounce (for a Sansa), it wouldn't weigh me down that much.

One thing about living on Maui. When it comes to consumerism, we're waaaay behind.

I stopped at Wal-Mart, because in the past when I was looking for things like fast memory cards, Wal-Mart had it when nobody else on the island did.

Didn't see any MP3s, so I asked the clerk, who led me to an inconspicuous spot, apologizing that, "This is all we have right now."

She was right to apologize. Wal-Mart, the world's biggest retailer had 3 -- count 'em, three -- choices, all Phillips, all with small internal memory and no provision for an SD card.

Any self-respecting small businessman selling electronics, if we still had such a person on Maui, would have 2, 3 or 4 times as many models in stock, from at least 2 manufacturers.

So much for the greater efficiency of rationalized retailing.

It isn't just MP3s. If you were to go to Costco to buy, say, a refrigerator, you would have a choice of low prices on 2 or 3 models, out of hundreds in production.

Karl Marx once lamented about capitalism that Manchester manufacturers offered more than 800 kinds of hammers. So socialism has won. We no longer have 800+ kinds of hammers on the shelf.

 
 

Article Comments

(7)

OneAikea

Mar-18-13 6:42 PM

I have a panasonic tape player with cassettes. Still original.

HarryEagar

Mar-16-13 5:01 PM

I have since checked other places. So far as I can tell, you really cannot buy an MP3 player on Maui. The others have just as poor a choice as Wal-Mart.

I learned something else, too. I don't usually give stock market advice, but if you own Kmart, dump it. That business is doomed. ` It carries the same poor selection as Sears, but prices are more than 10% higher.

OneAikea

Mar-14-13 10:55 PM

I say Native Hawaiians who had their own civilization that could make life on an Island. If this continues to become like the Mainland, Hawaii will be another Rapa Nui.

OneAikea

Mar-14-13 10:55 PM

I say Native Hawaiians who had their own civilization that could make life on an Island. If this continues to become like the Mainland, Hawaii will be another Rapa Nui.

OneAikea

Mar-14-13 10:54 PM

Hawaii used to live off the fat of the land.

Cost of shipping on ships is cheaper than shipping on air cargo. Labor costs, fuel and taxes make the Made in China product much more expensive than it is to make. America is making 15 cents out of a dollar and those who have factories in China make a dollar out of 15 cents. Ask Romney.

Should have checked the cost of living in Hawaii before one talks of costs of shipping. The factor is one lives on an Island that once fed the Native Hawaiians who lived here before. You cannot live on an Island thinking this is the Mainland.

HarryEagar

Mar-14-13 4:23 PM

I was talking about variety, not cost.

You are correct, but, that said, the freight on an MP3 player is negligible.

I was astonished, when I bought a washer and dryer a few years ago, to see that they had been FLOWN here from LA. And that wasn't by a big box store.

I cannot believe it wouldn't have been cheaper to import them by barge.

LilZeke

Mar-14-13 3:08 PM

Living in an island in the Pacific there is only ocean freight or expensive air freight. In person deals on Oahu allow the 'big box' stores absorb or spread out shipping costs. Remember to factor in total costs.

 
 

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