Sunday, May 22, 2005

A Good Read

photo by Cathy Rowand / The Journal Gazette

Ray Moscowitz has a nice piece in the Sunday JG about Alan Selleck, a cobbler in North Manchester. (We're assuming that Ray is a freelancer from the "for the Journal Gazette" in his byline.)

He does a nice job introducing us to Selleck, and providing relevant and interesting information about the current state of Selleck's business.

It's clear that Ray wants to use Selleck to make a point about the "little guys" being squeezed out by giant stores like Wal-Mart, but he (or the editor overseeing the piece) made sure to get in the other side of the story, which is that the real culprit is good old American competition, and people seem to prefer low prices.
Can anything be done to save the mom-and-pop shops, [Selleck]’s asked.

“No way, no way,” he responds quickly. “It’s just part of life. People want cheap. They want throwaway. They want to buy it six times a year. You’d be surprised how many guys come in here and tell me they’ve been buying Kmart shoes – $30, $40 – three to four times a year.”
No one likes to see local businesses struggling, but when they can't match their competitors' prices, it's going to be hard for them to stay open. After all, we all like paying less...

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