Friday, July 28, 2017

Signs the economy is bad: July 28, 2017 edition

Welcome to another edition of "Signs the Economy is Bad" here at The Itinerant Librarian. This is the semi-regular (as in when I have time and/or feel like doing it) feature where I scour the Internet in search of the oh so subtle hints that the economy is bad. Sure, pundits may say things are getting better, but what do they know? And to show not all is bad, once in a while we look at how good the uber rich have it.

Here we go with  another week in the bad economy. A bit of everything this week, so let's have a look.

  •  In big business merger news, even the world of sex shops can't escape the mergers as Good Vibes acquires Babeland. Story via the Good Vibes blog. 
  • The economy is bad, even for college graduates who were hoping to not have to do manual labor or other menial tasks. Well, now that some forms of manual labor all of a sudden have cachet, jobs like barber, book binder, and jeweler are becoming hot career choices, at least for a few hipsters. Story via The Christian Science Monitor
  • Public school teachers have it rough. It is bad enough that they get lousy pay, but then more often than not, due mainly to whiny tax payers who refuse to fund schools properly, teachers often have to buy their own school supplies for their own classrooms. One teacher decided to try something different to address the issue: she went out panhandling. Story via The Washington Post.
  • Baby Boomers are getting old. Their legacy is often one of messing up a lot of things for the generations that followed after they got all sorts of good breaks. They are also leaving behind a legacy of a lot of stuff. Many are hoping they can leave the stuff to their kids, but it turns out their kids could not care less. This may be related to the fact that many of their kids just do not have the space nor the desire for a lot of things they deem as junk or unnecessary. Story via The Christian Science Monitor. Having said that, if Nana is about to croak, and she wants you to have her vintage made in the USA Pyrex dishes, and you cook regularly, take them. Those suckers are not only valuable and collectible, but they also cook better than a lot of modern dishes, and in a pinch, you can sell them for a decent price. Pyrex story via NPR. 
  • Amazon needs employees, and they are going on a hiring spree. A concern is the labor market may be a bit tight. Story via USA Today.
    • Anyhow, Amazon will be just fine as more Americans keep using it to shop. In fact, when it comes to seeking out products to buy, Amazon has overtaken Google as the place to start. Story via Business Insider.
  • Mom and Pop markets are facing extinction, especially in rural and isolated areas where they are not only the main source of groceries but also serve other community functions. The problem is as owners retire or die, no one wants to take over the business. Story via The Washington Post
  • A few countries around the world are looking for a few good American researchers and scholars, so they are launching various recruitment campaigns. I will remind them that such scholars often need research support, so they may want to consider hiring a few librarians too. If they do, I am ready to go. Story via Inside Higher Ed
  • Apparently McDonald's needs to diversify. Selling fast food is not enough, so they also have an apparel line. Yes, not only do you pay for their food, now you can also pay to wear clothes plastered with their advertising. Story via Foodiggity
  • Apparently there are concerns Starbucks sales of overpriced burnt coffee may slow down. They had a tumble in their stock shares. Story via Reuters.
  • And in news from the world of science, turns out you are more likely to be happier if you DO order out more or eat out more and pay for a maid to clean your house once in a while. Story via The New York Times.
Sadly, we have some news from the world of the Pendejo In Chief. Oh well. . .

  •  The military is renting space in Trump Tower for about $130K for the space. Why? So just in case the Pendejo In Chief happens to spend the night, they can keep the "nuclear football" nearby. Because apparently the "football" needs to be comfortable too, and it needs a 3,475-square-foot space to do so. Story via New York Magazine.
  • That is peanuts compared to the expense of protecting the Pendejo In Chief when he takes some time off at Mar-A-Lago. So far guarding him there has cost $6.6 million dollars. May be a good time to work for the Secret Service or other protective services. Story via The Hill
  • The Pendejo In Chief is all about "Made in America." However, he outsources his e-commerce platform that sells his red MAGA hats and other products to a Canadian company. Story via Good.Is.
  • And finally for this week, as I often say, when the economy is bad, you have to get creative to make a buck or two. So, someone has taken those words to heart and created a new product. They are selling Donald Trump condoms. Yes, that is real. Story via Dangerous Minds.


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