Town Square

Business: too big to succeed?

Original post made by Tom Cushing, Danville, on Nov 2, 2011

Item: Grocery chain manager calls the cops on pregnant couple, with small child, who forgot to pay for a sandwich. Adults are hauled-off to jail; child placed in protective custody for a time.

This story contains 665 words.

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Posted by Hal, CDSI Research
a resident of another community
on Nov 2, 2011 at 10:36 am

Dear Editor and Tom,

Simply excellent. Let me add one more.

It appears BART has taken the same marketing approach to switch discount card holders to Clipper Cards. They have cancelled card sales at retailers and put their own "Mytransitplus" locations out of stock on senior green cards. Now, try to understand how a senior buys a discount clipper card at

The reality of business is "the business of business is the moment of sale and all the rest is delivery and accounting" and therefore any business must success by answering "who asked you to do it and how and when do they want to buy?" Netflix forgot this reality and lost 800,000 customers. BofA will not provide the numbers of customers that switched to free banking at various credit unions.

Now more late than never they remembered "The business of business is the moment of sale." Customers are quite costly to gain and more expensive to retain when accountants think they are sales people.

Nice work!!


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Posted by member
a resident of Danville
on Nov 2, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Do arm chair quarterbacks every make anything other than comments?

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Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 3, 2011 at 9:52 am

You lament corporate greed, ignoring that businesses are merely responding to consumer greed.

Greedy consumers demand low prices. When shopping, consumers generally don’t care if their purchases are made by slave labor, or from wood illegally clear-cut from rainforests, or from factories that poison groundwater, or from internet businesses who don’t collect sales taxes. I would love to know how many of these Occupy Wall Street protesters are aware of how their greed is contributing to their plight. They’re so used to blaming others, it’s doubtful they’d accept any responsibility.

And it’s greedy consumers, not the “Wall Street” boogieman, who are “punishing” the warehouse grocery for choosing profits over employee benefits. People who buy stocks (Joe & Jane Consumer) demand profits or they’ll sell your stock. And if a company doesn’t produce profits, it will either go bankrupt or be bought and dismantled by a stronger company that values profits. Every company has to fight to stay alive every single day.

You lament the “race to the bottom” as if in the mythical glory days of the 1950’s & 60s’ we didn’t poison our air and water, treat workers like dirt, discriminate, and nickel & dime everyone. Sure, back then, many businesses offered health insurance because it was cheap. Not anymore. And they offered pensions knowing most wouldn’t live long enough to collect. We were just as greedy back then as we are now. All of us, both businesses and consumers alike, have always “raced to the bottom line.” You think that’s something new?

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Posted by karen
a resident of Danville
on Nov 4, 2011 at 1:12 pm

spocwt: Consumers are not greedy. They are broke. If they are super weatlthy they shop at Neiman Marcus or the luxury stores where the greedy shop. Consumers on a budget now in case you are out of touch with the reality of most people, even in Danville which has plenty of people out of work and suffering though not at the level of some places but here are foreclosures here also. This is a town where many kids feel entitled to free rent as adults even if parents are struggling because their rich friends are spoiled by parents (princes and princesses) and where the high school kids throw out their unopened lunches and the schools dump furniture and other objects that are desperately needed in the "other world' communities of Richmond et al. Costco is doing well because they provide great benefits and treat their employees well but they also provide many items that households and businesses can use.

Of course businesses need to earn a profit but they should offer some understanding. One thing that no one mentions is the self-employed even if their incomes have increased (adjusted gross) and they have been paying their high interest rate mortgages on time, they are unable to refinance. Every day I speak to those in small business either with one or two employees that are not able to invest in hiring due to high mortgage rates. The banks tell us they prefer people on salaries as less risky however anyone can lose their job at any minute. It makes no sense. Having to be underwater to qualify or fannie and freddie is very frustrating to owners of small businesses. We need a program to address this so that small businesses can grow and afford to hire people. Paying 60k annually in mortgage that could be reduced to 35K would certainly allow the hiring of an employee and help the economy by being able to grow the business.

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Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 4, 2011 at 3:59 pm


If you’re broke, you don’t belong in Danville. Move. There are plenty of great communities nearby that are much cheaper. When I was poor, I lived in Concord. Great town. Great people, schools, businesses, cheaper housing.

You say, “We need a program” to address the difficulties people face when refinancing. I’m sorry, but you can’t expect the taxpayers to fund a Danville lifestyle. Stop expecting handouts. Don’t live in Danville if you can’t afford it.

People are broke because they mismanage their money. Period. I used to live on $2,000 per month and was quite happy. I even saved money.

Stop subscribing to the consumerist lifestyle. Consumer greed is destroying the planet. Don’t buy iPhones. Don’t shop at Costco. Quit your Starbucks habit. Make do.

I still wear clothes that I bought in 1989. My car is older than my teenage daughter. I haven’t paid for a haircut in 20 years. My wife cuts it for free.

I am the millionaire next door. I am the 1%.

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Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 4, 2011 at 4:57 pm

Spickwit the sanctimonious-
[Post removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language]
do you know the leading cause of bankruptcy is healthcare related expenses, not profligate spending in a number of states? Wake up Dude, oh sorry, wake up old man...BTW, hope you like the new tennis courts I helped pay for at SRV..keep healthy, cuz if you get a bad cat scan you are in deep guacamole...

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Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 4, 2011 at 6:20 pm


My old nemisis. Nice to hear from you! I thought you’d given up on these pages long ago. I’ll admit my last comment was over the top, but I’m getting quite grumpy in my old age listening to all these young over-educated kids complaining all the time. If they want a better job, they should start by covering up the tattoos and lose the piercings.

In all seriousness, I agree that medical costs are out of control and it is sad to see so many people financially devastated by health-related tragedy. Too bad that healthcare reform didn’t solve the problem. All that’s going to do is further bankrupt our country.

But you’ve got to admit, too many people spend like crazy and expect the rest of us to pick up the tab. I have a brother-in-law on welfare, food stamps, subsidized housing, and yet he somehow finds the money to buy all the latest Apple gadgets.
I thought about buying an iPhone but it’s $90 bucks a month! That’s over $1,000 per year! If these idiots would instead invest that $1,000 in a conservative mutual fund earning 6%, they would have $83,0000 at retirement!!

I’m glad we’re in a recession. Maybe people will learn a thing or two about saving money.

“Spickwit” ha ha. That’s funny.

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Posted by American
a resident of Danville
on Nov 5, 2011 at 9:53 am

Spcwt reference to the "Millionaire Next Door" is a very valid point. It is a fantastic book that should be required reading in the high school, instead of the liberal, "My two dads" type books pushed on our kids. It talks about making wise, economic decisions, and saving for a rainy day. Shopping at Sears, bringing my lunch to work, driving an old American car, are things in the book that I actually do. JRM is correct that medical emergencies hit everyone and are devastating, financially and emotionally, and personally I know all about that. But beinig prudent, having a solid but not fancy health plan, like Kaiser that I have, helps protect me and my family. Not buying a starbucks every day adds up and allows me to pay my Kaiser premium.