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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.
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