Business

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SeeCharles Dickens, Social Concern, English Moral Philosophy, Oil (Petroleum), Babylon, The Beast

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
— Facsimile reproduction of the 1st edition of the Christmas carol. London, 1843

...“Scrooge fell upon his knees, and clasped his hands before his face.
“Mercy!” he said. “Dreadful apparition, why do you trouble me?”
“Man of the worldly mind!” replied the Ghost, “do you believe in me or not?”
“I do," said Scrooge. “I must.”...
“You are fettered,” said Scrooge, trembling. “Tell me why?”
“I wear the chain I forged in life,” replied the Ghost. “I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will I wore it. Is its pattern strange to you?”
Scrooge trembled more and more.
“Or would you know,” pursued the Ghost, “the weight and length of the strong coil you bear yourself? It was full as heavy and as long as this, seven Christmas Eves ago. You have laboured on it, since. It is a ponderous chain!” ...
“Oh! captive, bound, and double-ironed,” cried the phantom, “not to know, that ages of incessant labour by immortal creatures, for this earth must pass into eternity before the good of which it is susceptible is all developed. Not to know that any Christian spirit working kindly in its little sphere, whatever it may be, will find its mortal life too short for its vast means of usefulness. Not to know that no space of regret can make amends for one life's opportunities misused! Yet such was I! Oh! such was I!”
“But you were always a good man of business, Jacob,” faltered Scrooge, who now began to apply this to himself.
“Business!” cried the Ghost, wringing its hands again. “Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were all my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!”
It held up its chain at arm's length, as if that were the cause of all its unavailing grief, and flung it heavily upon the ground again.
“At this time of the rolling year,” the spectre said, “I suffer most. Why did I walk through crowds of fellow-beings with my eyes turned down, and never raise them to that blessed Star which led the Wise Men to a poor abode? Were there no poor homes to which its light would have conducted me?”
Scrooge was very much dismayed to hear the spectre going on at this rate, and began to quake exceedingly.
“Hear me!” cried the Ghost. “My time is nearly gone.”
“I will,” said Scrooge. “But don't be hard upon me! Don't be flowery, Jacob! Pray!”
“How it is that I appear before you in a shape that you can see, I may not tell. I have sat invisible beside you many and many a day.”
It was not an agreeable idea. Scrooge shivered, and wiped the perspiration from his brow.
“That is no light part of my penance,” pursued the Ghost. “I am here tonight to warn you, that you have yet a chance and hope of escaping my fate. A chance and hope of my procuring, Ebenezer.”
“You were always a good friend to me,” said Scrooge. “Thank’ee!”
“You will be haunted,” resumed the Ghost, “by Three Spirits.” ...
Scrooge's countenance fell almost as low as the Ghost's had done.
“Is that the chance and hope you mentioned, Jacob?” he demanded, in a faltering voice.
“It is.”
“I—I think I’d rather not,” said Scrooge.
“Without their visits,” said the Ghost, “you cannot hope to shun the path I tread. Expect the first to-morrow, when the bell tolls one.”
“Couldn't I take ’em all at once, and have it over, Jacob?” hinted Scrooge. ...

A Christmas Carol (1984) — George C Scott as Ebenezer Scrooge

Joint Stock Company

The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea
— “Like all groundbreaking books, The Company fills a hole we didn’t know existed, revealing that we cannot make sense of the past four hundred years until we place that seemingly humble Victorian innovation, the joint-stock company, in the center of the frame.
With their trademark authority and wit, Economist editors John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge reveal the company to be one of history’s great catalysts, for good and for ill, a mighty engine for sucking in, recombining, and pumping out money, goods, people, and culture to every corner of the globe. What other earthly invention has the power to grow to any size, and to live to any age? What else could have given us both the stock market and the British Empire? The company man, the company town, and company time? Disneyfication and McDonald’sization, to say nothing of Coca-colonialism? Through its many mutations, the company has always incited controversy, and governments have always fought to rein it in. Today, though Marx may spin in his grave and anarchists riot in the streets, the company exercises an unparalleled influence on the globe, and understanding what this creature is and where it comes from has never been a more pressing matter. To the rescue come these acclaimed authors, with a short volume of truly vast range and insight.”

Business Practices

Innovation

International Journal of Innovation Management
Why Innovations Fail - The Case of Active and Passive Innovation Resistance

Selling strategy

7 reasons why you should play music in your store
No, Extended Warranties Are Usually Not Worth It

Pricing strategy

Attracting Early Adopters: Best Way to Overcome Consumer Resistance to Innovative Products

Consumer resistance

SeeConsumer Resistance

Consumer Resistance | Cambridge Dictionary
Consumer resistance | Collins Dictionary

Consumer Resistance to Innovations: The Marketing Problem and its Solutions
The Tactics of Consumer Resistance: Group Action and Marketplace Exit
Study Reveals Consumer Resistance to Apple Watch

Consumer Watchdog

The history of the deregulation debacle Dec 8, 2000
Why Is Healthcare So Expensive In The United States? Sep 22, 2000
Can L.A. County Turn Around Its Nursing Home Debacle? Sep 30, 2000
Consumer Confidential: Why Are Glasses So Expensive? The Eyewear Industry Would Prefer Keeping That Blurry Jan 22, 2019
Five Lumps of Coal From Health Insurers To Avoid When Buying Health Plans This Holiday Season Dec 16, 2015
Revenge of the Insurance Deregulators Aug 7, 2012
Revenge of the Insurance Deregulators Part 2 Aug 6, 2012
Tips For Selecting Long-Term Life Insurance Feb 8, 2012

Texas Public Policy Foundation

Texas Public Policy Foundation | SourceWatch.org
— “Most think tanks work for their funders and TPPF’s donors are a Who’s Who of Texas polluters, giant utilities and big insurance companies.
TPPF is thinking the way its donors want it to think.” Craig McDonald, director of Texans for Public Justice
About | Texas Public Policy Foundation
— "Free Enterprise", "Liberty", "Personal Responsibility" ...same age old tired recipe for bilking the public

Thomas Phillippon

The Great Reversal: How America Gave Up on Free Markets
The lack of competition is explained largely by policy choices, influenced by lobbying and campaign finance contributions...[A]cross time, state, and industries, corporate lobbying and campaign finance contributions lead to barriers to entry and regulations that protect large incumbents

Book Review: The Great Reversal by Thomas Philippon
Big Business Is Overcharging You $5,000 a Year | NYTimes
Brookings Institution - The Great Reversal

Income

Inequality

Salary Details for a Software Engineer III at Walmart
How much do Walmart associates make?

Schemes & Scams

Walmart links credit card rewards to in-store discounts
— What this Chain Store Age: The Business of Retail article does NOT disclose, is that Walmart is CHARGING customers to redeem their reward points at checkout. Before a self-checkout Walmart transaction closes, customers must choose whether to apply $10.00 of their rewards points towards their purchase or decline doing so. If accepting rewards application, they will be charged 25% extra in rewards points for the privilege of using their rewards points at Walmart.
IOW Walmart is STEALING from customers under the guise of offering them a "service".

Credit card law would give big-box stores payday at community's expense
— “To understand the harm CCCA is going to cause, we can look back about 13 years ago when a similar debit card policy passed. In 2010, a near-identical policy called the Durbin Amendment succeeded in bringing routing mandates to the debit card market. Routing mandates helped drive down interchange rates (the rates merchants pay to process electronic transactions) so that retailers could save money. Big-box stores saw immediately lower interchange rates and have since raked in $106 billion in extra revenue.
The policy is responsible for redistributing more than $23 billion directly from consumers to retailers like Target and Walmart over the last decade. That’s because, first and foremost, big-box stores hoarded their savings instead of using them to lower prices, and consumers got nothing. A Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond study in 2014 observed that 77 percent of retailers failed to lower prices and 21 percent raised prices after the policy went into effect.”

No, Congress is not considering a law that would ban credit card rewards
Love your credit card points? A bill that may change them is still on the table
Big banks ply D.C. with free donuts as part of a turbo-charged effort to save junk fees
Big-box banks: Congress' plan to lower credit-card swipe fees pits retailers against banks
Washington Takes Aim at Credit Card Processing Fees
Is Congress Going to Kill Credit Card Rewards?
Hands Off My Rewards