Are You Kidding Me? Wal-Mart Announces Economic Stimulus Plan

Super BowlI’m about to sound un-American, but I really was flabbergasted just now as I watched the local news on KFSM Channel 5 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. They were reporting on a statement issued today by the Chief Merchandising Officer of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. about how Wal-Mart will make a difference for the American people in the economic crunch.

Wal-Mart states saving families money is what they do. Chief Merchandising Officer, John Fleming states, “As gas prices rise and economic belts tighten customers look to Wal-Mart, and our role is to respond in ways that we know can make a bigger difference–saving 25 cents to a dollar on items for the super bowl party can add up quickly.”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME??!! Wal-Mart is going to help us all by lowering prices on the snacks we eat during Super Bowl parties to make a difference for the economy??? Let me get this straight…. There’s this football game. 22 guys on a field hoping to move a ball four yards a play. Start. Stop. A bunch of guys on the ground in tight pants. It’s become such a big deal that people all over the United States have parties to watch it. Single tickets for the game are being resold for $18,500. 30-second ads are selling for $2.7 million. And people buy tons of coke, chips, hot dogs, and other snack foods, resulting in driving up antacid sales the day after the Super Bowl by 20% to support the over 7.5 million Super Bowl parties!!! Yes, even more people watched the Super Bowl than voted in the last Presidential election. And, all of the money spent on ads and snacks doesn’t even begin to talk about all the money wasted gambling, legally and illegally, on every aspect of … a …. game.

So, in light of this, Wal-Mart claims it is doing us all a favor by rolling back prices on Super Bowl snacks. In fairness, what Wal-Mart is doing with lowering prices is good, but their professional marketer made a stupid statement about it, in my opinion. Hmmmm, we could all do our pocketbooks and waist lines a favor by not buying all that junk food in the first place. We could even likely avoid a few medical issues and thus costly health care visits and drugs if we took better care of ourselves and our diets in the first place. (Not to mention again the money spent on therapy for families and individuals destroyed by gambling and other addictions.) Moreover, if we didn’t spend money on chips and soda we might have more money for things that really matter.

I don’t know… something tells me that the American dream is slowly but surely killing us. This money obsession shows up in everything we do, even the stuff that used to just be fun when we were kids playing football on the vacant lot. blog-post-129.jpgWhat have we done? The Super Bowl is fun. It is neat. I’ll be watching it. But why do we pay millions for someone to play football? Why do we drive up the cost of everything by the billions spent on professional sports when there are people who can’t get healthcare or buy groceries?

Have I just lost my marbles?

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