Social Deterioration In Real Time Dept.

     As long as we’re looking at signs of the Apocalypse, have another:

     Well, yes, she’s an idiot. The cloth mask is a dead giveaway. But not only is she mumbling through a completely unnecessary mask, she’s unable to grasp a simple fact: Walmart knows what’s being stolen and what isn’t. That’s one of the reasons for having a point-of-sale / inventory control system. The security tags on the shades of makeup most desired by black women merely reflect those data.

     As it happens, the enhanced security trend has reached my supposedly safe portion of Long Island. However, Walgreen’s has implemented a “protect it all” scheme: everything small enough to be stuffed into a woman’s handbag is now locked behind a Lucite shield. I discovered this in the course of:

  • Going to Walgreen’s to purchase ibuprofen;
  • Discovering that the ibuprofen was behind such a locked shield;
  • Summoning sales help to liberate the ibuprofen;
  • Watching the saleswoman pull out a large bundle of keys and sort through them for the right one;
  • Watching her unlock and open the shield, extract one large bottle of ibuprofen, and close and relock the shield;
  • Watching her scamper off toward the registers with that bottle of ibuprofen faster than I could follow her.

     It protracted what would have been a five-minute stop into about fifteen minutes. This constitutes a severe blow to Walgreen’s. The store needs more personnel than it otherwise would. It must pay those salespeople, and provide them with certain noncash benefits. It must purchase accident insurance and unemployment insurance to cover them. Finally, it must deal with the reduced willingness of shoppers to shop there, owing to the indignities and the losses of time.

     Unless those costs and that reduction in trade are covered by increases in the retail prices of what it sells, Walgreen’s is in trouble. Yet I have no doubt that were I to visit any comparable institution in my district, I’d see the same precautions against theft in place or being implemented.

     But at least no one can accuse Walgreen’s of “racism” for protecting only the part of its stock-in-trade that’s stolen most often. What a bargain!

1 comment

    • Jabberwocky on March 18, 2023 at 11:07 PM

    Don’t they have RFID tags on all inventory?
    Wally World isn’t backed by a printing press and has to turn a profit.
    Stopped by there Friday late afternoon and it wasn’t busy at all with many items on sale that are not seasonal.

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