Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Admit It: You, Too, Are Paris Hilton 

Fortune.com - Value Driven - Admit It: You, Too, Are Paris Hilton: "Admit It: You, Too, Are Paris Hilton
The average American has far more in common with spoiled TV heirs than you might think.

A mob of shoppers rushing for a sale on DVD players trampled the first woman in line and knocked her unconscious on Friday as they scrambled for the shelves at a Wal-Mart Supercenter.
The woman, Patricia VanLester, had her eye on a $29 DVD player, but when the siren blared at 6 a.m. announcing the start of the post-Thanksgiving sale, VanLester, 41, was knocked to the ground by the frenzy of shoppers behind her....
[The woman's sister] said that some shoppers tried to help VanLester and that one employee helped her reach her sister. But most people just continued their rush for the deals, she said.
'All they cared about was a stupid DVD player,' she said.
Maybe you remember Stanford biologist Paul Ehrlich's famous prediction in the late 1960s that by now America would be so near starvation that we'd have food riots. The reality is exactly the opposite. We have shopping riots. Instead of panicking as the ultimate necessity of life grows so expensive that no one can afford it, Americans flip out because a product absolutely no one needs is available at a price so low that even a year ago no one would have believed it possible. Food, if anyone still cares, takes a lower proportion of our income than ever before"

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