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Over here we have an old saying, "You couldn't run a whelk stall!" It originates from the days when cockneys used to sell shell fish from hand-carts.

Of course, as an Englishman, and therefor by definition a gentleman, I wouldn't wish to suggest that you are in any way incompetent, indeed your always lively blog shows an immense amount of creative imagination, but somehow I can't see you running Wal-Mart. Without doubt, you could 'liberate' it, but like socialists the world over, you couldn't actually run it, except into the ground.

Over here we have an old saying, "You couldn't run a whelk stall!" It originates from the days when cockneys used to sell shell fish from hand-carts.

I can only imagine the working conditions of those people. (Truly because we barely learned about our own industrial age worker abuses. We couldn't be bothered with other countries.)

Believe it or not, and I'm telling you this because I like you, David Duff, when I wrote that post, an image of me running a WalMart flew through my brain. Directly behind the image of a workers' paradise where we all owned the store and soared into the middle class overnight, came images of people calling in sick every Monday and Friday, stealing stuff, yelling at me because I insisted they should wear shoes to work instead of flip-flops ... So I have no illusions about how hard it is to run a retail outlet.

That said, I'm not a socialist. I'm one of those hybrids. And I'm confident that if I did run a WalMart, it would be among the most profitable WalMarts in the US, which wouldn't be hard since Target is kicking WalMart's ass pretty soundly. And my workers' paradise would certainly do better than what they've got running in Europe, where Carrefour is kicking their ass even more soundly. Looks like WalMart has set the bar pretty low when it comes to out-performing them. Maybe someone should let them know their cut-throat capitalist strategy isn't good for running anything, except maybe running it into the ground.

Kudos. I don't want to destroy, but could run rings around them two days on Sunday.
It's called undercapilization.
Neglecting this (equipment), ignoring that (employees), accounting tricks (no taxes for 2 years - no buyers - time value of money stuff better balance sheet in the short-term). Where's that lead.
It leads from 56 to 57 cents a share, and incalculable lost profit - short vs. long-term, even mid-term.
Walmart is the next K-mart at it's worst.

I like you, too, Robin, albeit in much the same way that I like hot mince-pies at Xmas, it is very neccessary to blow on them before taking a bite in case you get burnt!

No reason why you should know, but the whelk-stall operators of yesteryear were actually proto-capitalists in that they usually owned their own stalls. Much as Mr. Marks and Mr. Spencer did in the late 19th century.

As for you running Wal-Mart, I suspect that once you got over your instinctive dislike of profit, you would be a whizz! I also suspect that there would not be much in the way of laughs for the people working for you. I could be wrong, of course, I've a life-time's experience at it.

I like you, too, Robin, albeit in much the same way that I like hot mince-pies at Xmas, it is very neccessary to blow on them before taking a bite in case you get burnt!

David, are you coming on to me?

As for you running Wal-Mart, I suspect that once you got over your instinctive dislike of profit, you would be a whizz! I also suspect that there would not be much in the way of laughs for the people working for you.

I was going to refute the profit thing, but I do have an instinctive dislike of excessive profit. Whatever I call excessive. Who knows, maybe I'd be sucked in to thinking that making 400 times what my workers make is a good thing. Maybe I'd enventually be able to sleep at night under those conditions in one of my palatial homes, but I don't think so.

They'd probably give up all the laughs they undoubtedly get working for Walmart for the living wage I'd pay them.

"David, are you coming on to me?"

Madam, please remember I'm British!

All apologies.

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