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A Truly Depressing Visit to JCPenney
Slate ^ | 3-1-2013 | Matthew Yglesias

Posted on 03/02/2013 7:34:55 AM PST by Sir Napsalot

.... Fourth-quarter earnings results came out on Wednesday and they were terrible. The bad news starts with a quarterly loss of $427 million, but it doesn’t end there. Comparable store sales—meaning stores that were open this past quarter and also open in the same quarter of the previous year—fell by a mind-boggling 32 percent. Henry Blodget says it may have been the worst quarter posted by any retailer ever.

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. JCPenney made a big splash in the retail world by hiring Ron Johnson, mastermind of Apple’s retail operations, as CEO. He immediately set about to reorganize the stores, and imported Apple concepts, most notably a “no discounting” policy geared around convincing customers that the everyday price is a great price. The results seemed to speak for themselves, but I was curious. After all, I’ve never given the “new” JCPenney a try. Perhaps Johnson is a visionary genius who’s reinvented the department store, and the world just isn’t ready for him. Perhaps he’s the victim of bad luck. Perhaps shareholders just need to hold on and have faith.

So I took the Metro to the Maryland suburbs for a visit to the JCPenney in the Wheaton Plaza Mall to see if Johnson really is reviving the legendary chain. .... Nobody was ever driven into bankruptcy by unreliable Wi-Fi, but that’s the Ron Johnson Era in a nutshell. Instead of building on what the people who like JCPenney liked about JCPenney, he undertook a series of essentially arbitrary changes that alienated some without drawing anyone new in.

(Excerpt) Read more at slate.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Chit/Chat
KEYWORDS: bhoeconomy; homo; homosexualagenda; homosexuals; jcp; jcpenney; retail
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(more excerpt) "At best you could say that Johnson, who used to work for Target, has succeeded in making the stores a bit more like Target. He’s brought in Target-style special collections like the Cosabella Amore line of lingerie (oddly placed on the floor with children’s clothes rather than near apparel for grown women) and launched advertisements that seem geared to a cooler, younger, more urban audience than JCPenney’s traditional client base of somewhat square, lower-middle-class moms.

But to what end? There’s already a Target and an H&M in the same mall for those seeking a slightly hipper experience. ...."

This is not to BASH JCPenny, maybe it is the norm nowadays for retail in general. Even Barnes and Noble is in trouble, they can't compete with Amazon. But I think there should be a lesson somewhere in there, regarding JC Penny.

1 posted on 03/02/2013 7:35:00 AM PST by Sir Napsalot
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To: Sir Napsalot

I can count the number of things I have ever bought at JCP on both hands and have some fingers left over.


2 posted on 03/02/2013 7:41:00 AM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

Retailers I feel that are trouble:

1. Best Buy
2. JC Penny
3. Lord and Taylor
4. Sears
5. B&N


3 posted on 03/02/2013 7:43:34 AM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: Sir Napsalot

The best way to sell clothing is the Kohls model. Those sales and perks draw the customers in.


4 posted on 03/02/2013 7:43:43 AM PST by dforest (I have now entered the Twilight Zone.)
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To: Sir Napsalot
This is not to BASH JCPenny, maybe it is the norm nowadays for retail in general.

JC Penny used to be a family oriented store. Parents would go there to buy their children school clothes, and the home department was great. But JC Penny decided to join the homosexual activists and started a pro-homosexual ad campaign. Parents were disgusted, and stopped doing business with the chain.
Since then, JC Penny hasn't been able to repair the damage. They've become, if you will, an abomination in the eyes of American families.

No one shops at Pennys anymore. I wouldn't shop there.

5 posted on 03/02/2013 7:45:41 AM PST by concerned about politics ("Get thee behind me, Liberal")
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To: dforest
I read an autobography once where the man learned from John Cash Penney himself how to save money even in the way they tied packages up (in the day when they did that sort of thing). Valuable lessons.

The autobiography was that of Sam Walton.

6 posted on 03/02/2013 7:50:24 AM PST by tenger (It's a good thing we don't get all the government we pay for. -Will Rogers)
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To: Perdogg
5. B&N

When it comes to B&N, they do so much on line business, people aren't showing up in the stores as much, so they're cutting back on the stores. On line business is doing well as far as I've heard.
We have a B&N around here. My kids and I go there all the time. To them, it's more like a toy store (they like to collect the series books). To me, it's a source for useful, permanent information (I keep a lot of reference books. If the electric were to ever go out, I'd have all my information on paper).

7 posted on 03/02/2013 7:57:55 AM PST by concerned about politics ("Get thee behind me, Liberal")
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To: Sir Napsalot

Penny’s violated the first principle in business:

KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS


8 posted on 03/02/2013 7:59:03 AM PST by OpusatFR
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To: concerned about politics

I quit shopping anywhere when I ran out of money


9 posted on 03/02/2013 8:02:56 AM PST by woofie
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To: Sir Napsalot
Earlier. 80+ comments.
10 posted on 03/02/2013 8:04:27 AM PST by Steely Tom (If the Constitution can be a living document, I guess a corporation can be a person.)
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To: concerned about politics

I love going to B&N. Love bookstores. My kids do, too. My problem is their prices are significantly higher than Amazon and their own on-line store. I understand they have costs the others do not, but they could try staying in the same ballpark.


11 posted on 03/02/2013 8:07:22 AM PST by conservative cat
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To: OpusatFR

Exactally, they forgot who their target market was. Homosexuals can’t have kids and they have very unstable domestic relationships. Because of this they’re not going to be shopping at a store like JCP which is geared more towards families. As for clothes I highly doubt gays are shopping at Penny’s, with more disposable income they’re probably going to the newer and hipper clothing stores. I purposelessly avoid Penny’s because of their pro-gay stancenot a penny from me.


12 posted on 03/02/2013 8:07:47 AM PST by erod (I'm a Chicagoan till Chicago ends...)
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To: riri
I can count the number of things I have ever bought at JCP on both hands and have some fingers left over.
Well, isn't that special. WTF are you, a trust fund baby?
Since (at least) the 50s, JCP has been a good-to-great place to shop, especially for families. Decent clothes, decent prices, decent stores, decent employees.
But ever since the American middle class starting losing jobs wholesale (thank you NAFTA), they've been treading water like 75% of all retailers.
There was nothing wrong with everyday pricing ... it's the "super sale weekends" that really sucked for any number of reasons.
The American consumer has just been brainwashed and too lazy to think for themselves. JCP's big mistake was getting into bed with queers.
13 posted on 03/02/2013 8:11:12 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: Sir Napsalot

“JCPenney made a big splash in the retail world by hiring Ron Johnson, mastermind of Apple’s retail operations, as CEO.”

He was pushed out of Apple for a reason.

Yes, pushed. Hard & abrupt.


14 posted on 03/02/2013 8:11:57 AM PST by ctdonath2 (3% of the population perpetrates >50% of homicides...but gun control advocates blame metal boxes.)
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To: Sir Napsalot
"...and imported Apple concepts, most notably a “no discounting” policy geared around convincing customers that the everyday price is a great price."

That model may work well for Apple who has a cult following, and whose devotees are willing to stand in line for days before a new product release, and would happily pay well in excess of the "everyday price," to have the latest.

For a clothing retailer, not so much.

15 posted on 03/02/2013 8:14:06 AM PST by Joe 6-pack (Qui me amat, amat et canem meum.)
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To: Sir Napsalot
"...and imported Apple concepts, most notably a “no discounting” policy geared around convincing customers that the everyday price is a great price."

That model may work well for Apple who has a cult following, and whose devotees are willing to stand in line for days before a new product release, and would happily pay well in excess of the "everyday price," to have the latest.

For a clothing retailer, not so much.

16 posted on 03/02/2013 8:14:23 AM PST by Joe 6-pack (Qui me amat, amat et canem meum.)
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To: oh8eleven
WTF are you, a trust fund baby?

Really?

17 posted on 03/02/2013 8:15:06 AM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: conservative cat; concerned about politics

The problem I have with B&N is the same had with Borders. I love books and going in bookstores but their selection is geared toward women and more popular releases. I go in sometime just to “people watch”. Their vintage collection is almost non-existence.


18 posted on 03/02/2013 8:16:29 AM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: concerned about politics

yep- maybe the gays should go support JCPenny’s......


19 posted on 03/02/2013 8:19:50 AM PST by God luvs America (63.5 million pay no income tax and vote for DemoKrats...)
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To: dforest
The best way to sell clothing is the Kohls model. Those sales and perks draw the customers in.

Absolutely, I was going to say this but was too lazy to type it all.

Kohl's utilizes newer technologies (and older) very well. Every week, I get one or two texts (Kohl's alerts) and they are typically 15-20% off any purchase.

Now when one of my kids needs sneakers or I need new dishcloths--instantly I think to check Kohl's and use my text.

Then more often than not, I get "Kohls cash" back. Sometimes as much as $20 for $50 spent.

So, the next week when we need something, where am I going? Kohl's to use the $20 in Kohl's cash I have with the text percentage off.

20 posted on 03/02/2013 8:20:05 AM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: concerned about politics
BINGO! We have a winna!

Ever since Penneys hired Ellen Degenerate and decided they cared more about catering to the homosexuals and their " lobby" instead of heterosexual FAMILIES who have been their financial staple of financial support since the FOUNDING of their company, our entire extended family has boycotted them. We have not set foot in any if their stores since, neither will we in the future.

Penneys made a conscious effort to tailor the marketing of their store to perverts who make up 3 to 5% of the population that are totally incapable of producing FUTURE customers by biologically reproducing themselves. Now Penneys is reaping what they, THEMSELVES have sown!

Maybe Penneys can stay afloat by selling S & M merchandise and homosexual oddities and sex toys? Oh I forgot, silly me, homosexuals already have plenty of places they can get this stuff ONLINE, so what do they need Penneys for.

Sucks to be them.

One more thing, all of the above also goes double for Disney. We haven't spent a thin dime in any of their parks or venues since they also went the way of Penneys regarding their support for homosexuals over the traditional family.

21 posted on 03/02/2013 8:27:41 AM PST by Jmouse007 (Lord deliver us from evil, in Jesus name, amen.)
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To: Perdogg
I love books and going in bookstores but their selection is geared toward women and more popular releases.

For sure. The kids do fine, but a lot of times I'll call and order what I want, and then pick it up at the store when it comes in.
MOST of what I buy has to be ordered. I thought maybe I was just weird, because they never have the book I want in stock. I mean seriously - how could any book store survive without a book like "How to Brain Tan Pelts?" (People really should learn how to survive without......well.....everything. If they don't need what they've learned, their kids will have the info if they ever need it.)

22 posted on 03/02/2013 8:30:31 AM PST by concerned about politics ("Get thee behind me, Liberal")
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To: dforest

Some of Kohls clothes are one step above Walmarts. The balance is equal to Walmarts.


23 posted on 03/02/2013 8:34:45 AM PST by YukonGreen
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To: Sir Napsalot

Didn’t Matthew Yglesias trash Bob Woodward? Why would anyone read his drivel?


24 posted on 03/02/2013 8:35:02 AM PST by WashingtonSource
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To: dforest

Some of Kohls clothes are one step above Walmarts. The balance is equal to Walmarts.


25 posted on 03/02/2013 8:35:19 AM PST by YukonGreen
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To: riri
Every week, I get one or two texts (Kohl's alerts)... So, the next week when we need something, where am I going?
And to think I insinuated you were part of the Grey Poupon crowd. Ever hear of Pavlov?
BTW, I can count the number of things I have ever bought at Kohl's on both hands and have ten fingers left over.
26 posted on 03/02/2013 8:38:31 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: YukonGreen

People may call me a snob, but I love the clothes at Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack. I got a new midnight navy blue all season birdseye Peter Millar suit (free alterations with the Nordstrom Rack Debt card) for $350 that was originally $800.


27 posted on 03/02/2013 8:40:11 AM PST by Perdogg (Sen Ted Cruz is my adoptive Senator)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I used to enjoy getting those $10 coupons from JCP. I would use them to buy a pair of pjs for a buck or so, something like that.

Recently I walked through Penneys for the first time in a long time. There was little inventory, not much selection, and few customers. Plus, for some strange reason, parts of the sales floor previously reserved for merchandise had been changed into bright white “salon” areas, with all-white tables and modern swivel chairs that reminded me of the furniture I used to have in my childhood Barbie house. LOL, really, JCP?


28 posted on 03/02/2013 8:44:03 AM PST by CatherineofAragon (Support Christian white males---the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization)
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To: YukonGreen
"Some of Kohls clothes are one step above Walmarts. The balance is equal to Walmarts."

I loved Kohl's at one point. I could always find things there which were different, and stylish. But the quality has dropped, IMO. Now when I go in, the place is a wreck. Clothing is lying all over the floor in the womens' areas, and the racks are a mess. The shelves which hold folded items are full of balled-up, tangled garments....it's a mess. It turns me off completely.

29 posted on 03/02/2013 8:49:11 AM PST by CatherineofAragon (Support Christian white males---the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization)
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To: Sir Napsalot
We used to have five Barnes & Noble stores in this area. Now there is only one. People use those tablets now or if they want an actual book, they buy it online or go to a discounter like Half Price Books.

Online sales are killing other retailers too. We have a Macys that once occupied 12 floors. Now it's down to 7. Departments were eliminated and the ones which remain are lumped together. Kmart looks more upscale.

I myself don't do much shopping in a brick and mortar store. I buy a lot online. Some of the reason is that I can't get around like I used to. And I guess I miss the customer service. At one time, every department had friendly, knowledgeable and helpful sales staff with cashiers to ring up the sales. Now with most retailers, you have to hunt all over the store for assistance. Good luck finding it. If I have to do it all myself, I'd rather save the trip and get on the computer. So many online retailers offer free shipping, it's cheaper to shop online than to spend the money on gas, bus fare and sometimes parking to go to an actual store.

30 posted on 03/02/2013 8:49:19 AM PST by fatnotlazy
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To: CatherineofAragon
previously reserved for merchandise had been changed into bright white “salon” areas, with all-white tables and modern swivel chairs that reminded me of the furniture I used to have in my childhood Barbie house

Sounds fabulouuuuus. That's one thing the homosexuals are good for - redecorating.

31 posted on 03/02/2013 8:49:19 AM PST by concerned about politics ("Get thee behind me, Liberal")
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To: oh8eleven; riri
Well, isn't that special. WTF are you, a trust fund baby?

OK...but not a word from you about how China is taking over our markets. Your (very common) mentality is exactly what is driving their success.

32 posted on 03/02/2013 8:50:53 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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To: concerned about politics

LOL, true!

Just think...all that effort to attract the homos, and probably not a single one ever walks through the doors.


33 posted on 03/02/2013 8:52:10 AM PST by CatherineofAragon (Support Christian white males---the architects of the jewel known as Western Civilization)
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To: Mr. Jeeves
China is taking over our markets.
Right country, wrong argument. But that's a very common mistake.
China doesn't sell goods in our malls - it manufactures them. It's the American retailer who's to blame.
34 posted on 03/02/2013 9:05:25 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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My bad, sorry it was John Browett who was shoved out of running Apple retail.


35 posted on 03/02/2013 9:07:28 AM PST by ctdonath2 (3% of the population perpetrates >50% of homicides...but gun control advocates blame metal boxes.)
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To: Jmouse007
One more thing, all of the above also goes double for Disney. We haven't spent a thin dime in any of their parks or venues since they also went the way of Penneys regarding their support for homosexuals over the traditional family.

Except that unlike Penney's, Disney is doing quite well financially.

36 posted on 03/02/2013 9:13:46 AM PST by Drew68
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To: Perdogg
I have to believe it's the incredible amount of competition today. Where I live in S.E. Michigan, within a 5 mile radius there are now 3 Walmarts, 2 Targets, a Kohls, 2 Home Depots, 1 Lowes and several other chain stores that I can't think of their names.........

There's a large mall about two miles away that houses a J.C. Penny store but I haven't been there in years. There's no need to......

37 posted on 03/02/2013 9:15:13 AM PST by Hot Tabasco (God bless you Tommy and thank you for your service: http://swiftboats.org/tribute/tribute.html)
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To: concerned about politics
JC Penny used to be a family oriented store. Parents would go there to buy their children school clothes, and the home department was great. But JC Penny decided to join the homosexual activists and started a pro-homosexual ad campaign. Parents were disgusted, and stopped doing business with the chain. Since then, JC Penny hasn't been able to repair the damage. They've become, if you will, an abomination in the eyes of American families No one shops at Pennys anymore. I wouldn't shop there.

IMHO you've correctly summarized why JC Penney is going down the tubes. Other stores are on our list as well as products / food items made by companies that have gone out of their way to support liberal agenda hot button issues. Let their fellow liberals keep their businesses alive or on life-support.

38 posted on 03/02/2013 9:16:04 AM PST by MamaDearest
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To: tenger

I’m old enough to remember the days of shopping in Penney’s for school clothes with my mother and sisters. Our purchases were carefully wrapped in crisp paper and tied with string. I can still see that clerk whipping the string around that bundle, pulling it tight, and tying an incredibly fast and secure knot. The paper and string were saved and recycled, of course. Nobody threw anything out in those days. Everything was reusable.


39 posted on 03/02/2013 9:17:59 AM PST by redhead ('If your enemy is quick to anger, irritate him.' -- Sun Tzu)
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To: oh8eleven
The American retailer is carrying what the American consumer is willing to pay for. And right now, that doesn't include American-made goods.

I'd love to carry only Made in the USA items in our stores. But we would be out of business in three months.

No individual consumer ever believes it is his or her personal responsibility to "Buy American". They approve of the concept in general, but when it is their dollars being spent, all of a sudden they want items priced at a level no American manufacturer can meet.

40 posted on 03/02/2013 9:18:43 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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To: Sir Napsalot
I stopped at a JCPenney just a couple weeks ago, to see what it as like, hadn't been in one in years, but a new one opened up nearby. The sense of disorganized chaos is real. The aisles were obstructed with a series of poorly positioned mannequins placed squarely in the middle of the road.

I picked up a couple things, and the checkout was done on some weird handheld instrument that barely worked, instead of a cash register. To use my credit card I had to try to sign my name with my finger(really) on the handheld in a screen the size of an old small cell phone. The traditional VeriSign terminal sat there unused. The prices were decent enough, but nothing special. Just no reason to ever go back.

41 posted on 03/02/2013 9:21:01 AM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: oh8eleven
Oh, but I do enjoy me some Grey Poupon every now and then. A good German mustard too.

Personally, I hate seeing any of these retail outlets go under. Just because I don't shop at JCP doesn't mean I want to see an American institution go out of business.

Unfortunately, I believe we will see more who will not survive fundamental transformation.

42 posted on 03/02/2013 9:21:04 AM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

It’s a classic retail conundrum - do you try to move upscale or downscale?

Not many of the “in-the-middle” stores have survived. Sears and Woolworth’s were once in the DJIA as recently as the 1990’s. Now it’s Walmart.


43 posted on 03/02/2013 9:23:49 AM PST by P.O.E. (Pray for America)
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To: Mr. Jeeves
No individual consumer ever believes it is his or her personal responsibility to "Buy American". They approve of the concept in general, but when it is their dollars being spent, all of a sudden they want items priced at a level no American manufacturer can meet.

There's no way we could afford anything with a union label. (and no one really wants to support the union thugs, either).
Other nations don't have the high taxes, oppressive regulations, or additional union expences, so their products can be made cheaper and better. In todays economy, especially in the economy we have now, people can't afford anything else. (At this point, they really can't afford anything at all.)

Until America wakes up and becomes more business friendly, there aren't going to be any inexpensive products in the U.S. They've all been driven out.

44 posted on 03/02/2013 9:26:52 AM PST by concerned about politics ("Get thee behind me, Liberal")
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To: oh8eleven; riri

I bought a bunch of “Mister Mustard” on sale, but for my money it’s Kosciusko. If I’m in the mood to splurge, I get imported French (yeah, I know) Moutarde Forte.


45 posted on 03/02/2013 9:27:40 AM PST by P.O.E. (Pray for America)
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To: P.O.E.

You’re absolutely correct.
And WM is feeling strong competition from Dollar General and Family Dollar even farther down the scale.

The MSM can talk all day about the “recovery” but the real world contradicts it.


46 posted on 03/02/2013 9:29:10 AM PST by nascarnation (Baraq's economic policy: trickle up poverty)
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To: riri
Just because I don't shop at JCP doesn't mean I want to see an American institution go out of business.

It would take a wholesale change of leadership and philosophy to make it worth saving. A retro change. If they obstinately refuse to abandon their social progressivism, I won't miss them.

47 posted on 03/02/2013 9:33:08 AM PST by steve86 (Acerbic by Nature, not NurtureĀ™)
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To: oh8eleven; Mr. Jeeves
It's the American retailer who's to blame.

No it's not. They can only supply what they can get. The blame lies with the government which has chased the manufacturers out of this country.

48 posted on 03/02/2013 9:34:15 AM PST by Gabz (Democrats for Voldemort.)
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To: steve86
It would take a wholesale change of leadership and philosophy to make it worth saving. A retro change. If they obstinately refuse to abandon their social progressivism, I won't miss them.

Good point. It helps to know your market. And when looking to broaden that market, not to spit on the faces of those who have supported you for so many years. (which it appears they did).

49 posted on 03/02/2013 9:36:59 AM PST by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: Sir Napsalot

I used to like Penney’s. I realize they’re trying to “update” and be PC; and if they depended on old fogies like me to keep them in business they’d be out of luck.

Last time I was in there, the racks and racks of cheap polyester imports overwhelmed me. Now, I mostly buy natural fiber clothes made in the US as much as I can. I buy an occasional leather handbag from Penneys. - Mostly, I mix and match, wear what I’ve got as long as it holds together and let the chips fall where they may. I’ve noticed local ads done by Ellen Degeneres haven’t been on here at least lately. I don’t begrude ED being in Penneys ads; but they need to recognize that not all, at least yet, of their customers are homosexuals.


50 posted on 03/02/2013 9:39:01 AM PST by Twinkie (JOHN 3:16)
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