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At Flood Tide
Crackpot Mailbox: Brycer Sharper, Lynn Lockhart and James Discuss In House versus Corporate Visions of Modernity

Hi PR, saw your comment and wanted to respond here.

I never shopped there because it's out of driving range for where I live but these guys just closed down after decades, one reason cited is that their produce buyer died and no one could cut deals like him. Talent is rare and it's not fungible. I would love to see local independent markets in my neighborhood but globo-homo is still near full strength.

Kind regards,


We are definitely at flood tide but I see it turning and going down to a negative ebb tide shortly. Ideally, this would be a family business where the buyer was a son, daughter or in-law. Perhaps this guy's kids all do something else like work for MegaCorp.

The model of "work" nowadays is that you you have no idea what your dad does at work. You work hard in school to get "good grades" so that you can go to a "good school" at enormous expense and get a "good job" working at MegaCorp for less than your dad earned in today's dollars. Even though my dad and I work in the same field, he passed little onto me so each generation starts over from scratch poorer than the one before because the wages have stagnated and GloboMegaCorp has consolidated more power over workers. The way out of this is family businesses like that above, where talent is cultivated "in house" from early-on. This form of proprietorship requires stable families which are in steep decline. I'm trying to raise my boys to at least start their own businesses if I can't start one of my own.


The Curse of Scaling Up Human Action

I worked in chain supermarkets and in independent food markets who always kicked their ass head-to-head. Americans have the mental disability of equating quality with quantity, always naming the heavyweight boxer "better" than his small master just because he is bigger. Without getting into how one operates on a small scale, let's look at the competition in the market I know, the Mid-Atlantic, focused on Baltimore.

-Every independent grocer who has scaled up to more than 3 stores has had to close the 4th outlet, go out of business or split ownership. The primary causes cited are always employee quality, especially the trustworthiness and loyalty of department managers.

-Supermarket chains which have failed and have had to either rebrand, sell, amalgamate, cut back to less than 3 outlets or close in the Baltimore area since 1980:

1. Pantry Pride—total fail

2. Super Warehouse

3. Basics

4. A & P

5. Super Pride—total fail

6. Santonies—of 18 location only 1 small deli remains

7. Value Food—total fail

8. Farm Fresh—total fail

9. Metro

10. Eddies—cut back

11. Box 'n Save—cut back

12. Stop, Shop & Save [commonly called Stop, Shop & Rob]—total fail

13. Super Fresh—total fail

14. Shoppers—total fail [3 earlier incarnations from the list above]

With lucky 14, Shoppers, their second highest grossing location surviving the Baltimore Purge of 2015 by serving as a police and military rally point, has come under the ownership of UNFI, who does not want them, and is closing and selling off stores piecemeal.

Giant Food, lately sold by a Dutch holding company to an American food wholesaler-retailer, held orientation for 45 new hires at the Parkside Location. One of these new hires was the only "white" person present and described himself as feeling like, "a marshmallow in a coal mine."

The company training officer, a woman was simply going over the basics of what was expected of an entry level employee, which elicited calls of discrimination, threats of violence—including a murder threat—demands for a paid break at the meeting and forcible ejections of new hires from the building.

The location manager was a retired law officer, large, intimidating and bawling orders as he displayed a firearm in open carry. He is not a grocer. The man who was part of this fiasco, who told me about his experience one week ago, said he was afraid to leave the orientation area and was one of only 2 new hires—people already interviewed, vetted, drug tested and ready for induction—who were not ejected by the law enforcement goon turned grocer.

43 of 45 new hires were ejected or stormed out of their job orientation and not inducted as employees for such behaviors as:

-arguing with the HR lady

-demanding to be paid for orientation

-demanding that they have the right to make their own schedule

-declaring that certain whether conditions, like temperatures over 80 and under 40, were not legal work conditions

-reserving the right to attack and even kill customers, coworkers and supervisors!

Giant Food is the most successful retail food chain in the Mid Atlantic region and this is their employment pool. Not only are their location managers becoming private security operatives rather than grocers [this is trending in private operations too. I was replaced by a security expert when I resigned as General Manager] with a focus on safety and loss prevention rather than merchandizing and customer service. In fact, the man who attended this meeting is a friend of mine who has never worked retail food and is already, on his first day of work, slated for management training.

As Bryce points out, the niche for the European American Minority of the future is quality, and since moral quality is foundational to personal industry, the seedbed for this quality can only be the family.

The Ghetto Grocer Kindle Edition

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