Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday

Black Friday

It is upon us. The day that people of all sorts of eduction rush out to be part of the consumer machine. Just remember that capital is dead labour, that, vampire-like, only lives by sucking living labour, and lives the more, the more labour it sucks. Though that sucking eventually gives you some sort of cheaply made Chinese sweat shop big screen.

Then again, Marxism doesn't give you shit like this mind numbing tune as a means to lure you into shopping;

To be perfectly honest, even if I didn't carry socialist beliefs, I wouldn't be doing Black Friday anyway. Not in this economy. Not only because money isn't flowing like the blood of the non-believers, but because Black Friday as a whole is stupid.

Over the weekend I saw people already putting up tents outside of Best Buy trying to score that coveted #1 spot in line for those deals. You want to know when a political movement has reached its peak? When it's getting parody movements done for corporations as Occupy Best Buy is. Which is tragic considering the Occupy Wall Street movement is all about redistribution of the wealth and black Friday is all about giving your wealth to those companies for slightly lower priced material goods.

At least counter to that, Occupy Santa Ana kicked off the holiday season by holding a pair of flash mobs at the checkout lanes of Walmarts there and in Orange hoping to rally the workers to call in sick on Black Friday.

On the flip side of that, it looks like the OWS movement want to increase the unemployment rate considering Black Friday has become a retail rite of passage. In that if you work retail, it's a given that you will have to do in some time on Black Friday. But this movement, as seen on this Facebook page, offered a message to try to the masses:
It is wrong that the corporation you work for is making you come to work in the middle of the night when you should be at home with your family. It is wrong that their profits soar while you struggle to make ends meet. Walmart is exploiting your services and they are undercompensating you for it. This too is wrong. We strongly urge you to call in sick on Black Friday. We strongly urge you to call in sick on Black Friday. You are the 99 percent and we support you.

The reaction? Well, what did you really expect? Of course those people so deseperate to actually work at Walmart and have a steady paycheck, no matter how little it may be, called the flash mob "stupid" and "disrespectful". Hell, the place can't even get unionized, what makes you think they'll make any difference if they call in sick on Friday other than not having a job for them come Saturday.

Anyhow, back to the point as to why Black Friday is sort of a waste - The deals aren't really that great. Or maybe I have more self respect for my time than to piss it away waiting hours and hours - and in this case days for a slightly less than normal % off on goods.

I wonder how many people who are waiting in line could have spent that time actually working or producing dead labor in exchange for currency, I wonder how much extra you'd have after buying the cheaply made product if you used the time a bit more productively. Just wondering, is all.

And I realize that the economy is shit and many people aren't well off enough to afford this stuff normally, but taking days at a time to wait like if it was some sort of twilight fandom thing isn't very helpful. Maybe if you couldn't normally afford that big screen TV with the average sale prices, perhaps it shouldn't be in your pipeline to begin with.

It's not even touching the subject that the average store doesn't carry all that many of the super duper low price items to begin with. You'll be lucky if a store gets 10 of those really sweetly priced electronics. In which case you never had a chance to get it. Not that you would have had much of a chance given the odds of how many people are trampling over each other for the same product. You're really better off, as well as potential medical bills you will incur in the process of trying to get it, just paying full retail.

I don't know how people actually do it. What sort of mentality does it take to wake up early the day after spending time with family... or for that matter going directly from the family turkey dinner and going to places like Target and Walmart to fight each other for those midnight/Friday sales.

I often wake up in sweat and screams thinking about the crowds at any given retail outlet on Black Friday. Why this has to be some sort of "Start to Christmas" or, for that matter, why Christmas has to be some consumerist holiday I will never really understand. But the fact of the matter is that it is and I need to learn how to deal with it.

Final Fun Fact: Did you know that Thanksgiving Eve is one of the biggest drinking nights of the year. I imagine it's because you're going to be spending time with the family and preparing yourself for the doom that is Black Friday shopping. But in any case, the police are going to be saturating the streets with cops all this weekend to catch anyone who is numbing their senses with some alcohol. So perhaps you should lay off that third cup of wine at the dinner table this year.

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