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Retail Apocalypse: Why Are Major Retail Chains All Over America Collapsing?

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Why Are Major Retail Chains All Over America Collapsing? -  Photo by Gars129If the economy is improving, then why are many of the largest retail chains in America closing hundreds of stores?  When I was growing up, Sears, J.C. Penney, Best Buy and RadioShack were all considered to be unstoppable retail powerhouses.  But now it is being projected that all of them will close hundreds of stores before the end of 2013.  Even Wal-Mart is running into problems.  A recent internal Wal-Mart memo that was leaked to Bloomberg described February sales as a “total disaster”.  So why is this happening?  Why are major retail chains all over America collapsing?  Is the “retail apocalypse” upon us?  Well, the truth is that this is just another sign that the U.S. economy is falling apart right in front of our eyes.  Incomes are declining, taxes are going up, government dependence is at an all-time high, and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the percentage of the U.S. labor force that is employed has been steadily falling since 2006.  The top 10% of all income earners in the U.S. are still doing very well, but most U.S. consumers are either flat broke or are drowning in debt.  The large disposable incomes that the big retail chains have depended upon in the past simply are not there anymore.  So retail chains all over the United States are now closing up unprofitable stores.  This is especially true in low income areas.

When you step back and take a look at the bigger picture, the rapid decline of some of our largest retail chains really is stunning.

It is happening already in some areas, but soon half empty malls and boarded up storefronts will litter the landscapes of cities all over America.

Just check out some of these store closing numbers for 2013.  These numbers are from a recent Yahoo Finance article

Best Buy

Forecast store closings: 200 to 250

Sears Holding Corp.

Forecast store closings: Kmart 175 to 225, Sears 100 to 125

J.C. Penney

Forecast store closings: 300 to 350

Office Depot

Forecast store closings: 125 to 150

Barnes & Noble

Forecast store closings: 190 to 240, per company comments


Forecast store closings: 500 to 600


Forecast store closings: 150 to 175


Forecast store closings: 450 to 550

The RadioShack in a nearby town just closed up where I live.  This is all happening so fast that it is hard to believe.

But the truth is that those store closings are not the entire story.  When you dig deeper you find a lot more retailers that are in trouble.

For example, Blockbuster recently announced that this year they will be closing about 300 stores and eliminating about 3,000 jobs.

Toy manufacturer Hasbro recently announced that they will be reducing the size of their workforce by about 10 percent.

Even Wal-Mart is going through a tough stretch right now.  According to documents that were leaked to Bloomberg, Wal-Mart is having an absolutely disastrous February…

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. had the worst sales start to a month in seven years as payroll-tax increases hit shoppers already battling a slow economy, according to internal e-mails obtained by Bloomberg News.

“In case you haven’t seen a sales report these days, February MTD sales are a total disaster,” Jerry Murray, Wal- Mart’s vice president of finance and logistics, said in a Feb. 12 e-mail to other executives, referring to month-to-date sales. “The worst start to a month I have seen in my ~7 years with the company.”

So what in the world is going on here?

The mainstream media continues to proclaim that we are experiencing a robust “economic recovery”, but at the same time there are a whole host of indications that things are continually getting worse.

Even global cell phone sales actually declined slightly in 2012.  That was the first time that has happened since the last recession.

Perhaps it is time that we faced the truth.  The middle class is shrinking, incomes are declining and there are not nearly as many jobs as there used to be.

Mort Zuckerman pointed this out in a recent article in the Wall Street Journal

The U.S. labor market, which peaked in November 2007 when there were 139,143,000 jobs, now encompasses only 132,705,000 workers, a drop of 6.4 million jobs from the peak. The only work that has increased is part-time, and that is because it allows employers to reduce costs through a diminished benefit package or none at all.

So how can the mainstream media be talking about how “good” things are if we still have 6.4 million fewer jobs than we had back in November 2007?

And sadly, things may soon be getting a lot worse.  If Congress does not do anything about the “sequester”, millions of federal workers may shortly be facing some very painful furloughs according to CNN

Federal workers could start facing furloughs as early as April, according to federal agencies trying to prepare for the worst.

Unless Congress steps in, some $85 billion in massive spending reductions will hit the federal government, doling out furloughs to much of the nation’s 2.1 million federal workforce, experts say.

If you still live in an area of the country where the stores and the restaurants are booming, you should be very thankful because that is not the reality for most of the country.

I often write about the stunning economic decline of major cities such as Detroit, but there are huge sections of rural America that are in even worse shape than Detroit in many ways.

For example, many Indian reservations all over America have been shamefully neglected by the federal government and have become hotbeds for crime, drugs and poverty.

Business Insider recently profiled the Wind River Indian reservation in western Wyoming.  The following is a brief excerpt from that outstanding article

The Wind River Indian Reservation is not an easy place to get to, but I had to see it for myself.

Thirty-five-hundred square miles of prairie and mountains in western Wyoming, the reservation is home to bitter ancestral enemies: the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes.

Even among reservations, it’s renowned for brutal crime, widespread drug use, and legal dumping of toxic waste.

You can see some amazing photos of the Wind River Indian reservation right here.

It is hard to believe that there are places like that in America, but the truth is that conditions like that are spreading to more U.S. communities with each passing day.

We are a nation that is in an advanced state of decline.  But as long as the financial markets are okay, our leaders don’t seem too concerned about the suffering that everyone else is going through.

In fact, former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan essentially admitted as much during a recent interview with CNBC.  The following is how a Zero Hedge article summarized that interview…

Starting at around 1:50, Greenspan states the odds of sequester occurring are very high – in fact, the playdough-faced ex-Chair-head notes, “I find it very difficult to find a scenario in which [the sequester] doesn’t happen” But when asked how this will affect the economy, Awkward Alan is unusually clearly spoken – “the issue is how does it affect the stock market.”

While not so many of our leaders have taken the path to direct truthiness, Greenspan somewhat shocks a Botox’d and babbling Bartiromo when he admits “the stock market is the key player in the game of economic growth.”

Bartiromo shifts uncomfortably in her seat, strokes her imaginary beard and stares blankly as Greenspan explains that while the sequester will have a real effect on the real economy, “if the stock market can hold up through this, then the effect will be rather minor.”

Do you see?

As long as the stock market is moving higher they think that everything is just fine and dandy.

And the Obama administration?

They continue to pursue the same policies that got us into this mess.

Their idea of “economic reform” is to threaten to sue businesses that do not hire ex-convicts.

And of course now that Obama has been re-elected he is putting a tremendous amount of effort into “stimulating the economy”.

For example, he spent this weekend golfing in Florida, and the Obamas recently spent about 20 million taxpayer dollars vacationing in Hawaii.

Meanwhile, the U.S. economy is getting worse with each passing day.

If you doubt that economic conditions are getting worse, please read this article: “Show This To Anyone That Believes That ‘Things Are Getting Better’ In America“.

When you look at the cold, hard numbers, it is undeniable what is happening to America.

And our leaders are not doing anything to fix our problems.  In fact, most of the time they are just making things worse.

So buckle up and get prepared.  We are in for very bumpy ride, and this is only just the beginning.

Store Closed Until Further Notice - Photo by Gryllida

  • Bigg Donn

    You can beat their prices and sales-tax by purchasing online from outfits that have no retail physical plant and related hassles (shoplifting, ADA lawsuits, etc)

  • Tex May

    Why are they closing? Simple! Internet shopping is eating their lunch. People browse through these stores, take up sales peoples time and then go home and Google it.

    Two days later it’s on their doorstep. In most cases the seller never even warehoused the product thanks to UPS and the miracle of drop shipping.

    It’s not that people are not shopping. They are just shopping somewhere else.

    Retail is going to have to reinvent itself and give the customer a reason to buy or disappear. Service, Service, Service.

    • Jagrick

      Most people don’t internet grocery shop.

      • Tex May

        Where I live people are even grocery shopping on the internet. If you have a bricks and mortar store you better be prepared to adapt or die.

      • DIscouragedOne

        I am so disgusted with my local chain grocery store (that has had my business since 2000 when the other chain grocery store I liked went out of business) that my trips there are becoming less and less frequent. I buy more and more at my local store which has a few stores scattered in the area but is a local chain, just a few stores. If you don’t think it is tempting to pay $5 to have your shopping done for you, go to the store to pick it up and have them bring it out to the car for you, yeah, I can spare that $5 and I can even overlook some of the things that cost more there then the chain grocery store that gets worse and worse. Last time I wanted something from seafood at the chain place, I walked away because I stood there for 5 minutes and nobody was there…but it is their loss, literally.

      • DiscouragedOne

        When it becomes feasible for me (don’t know of any deals at the present time that would be worth it but that will change) I will do it in a heartbeat. I know many who already do it.

    • Makati1

      What happens when that delivery service gets too expensive and stops? The stores will be gone.

      Don’t think you are getting a deal or the delivery is ‘free’. NOTHING is free.

  • Ralfine

    People get fired, wages sink, profit is rising.

    The “economic experts”: business is good.

    People get fired, wages sink, they buy less.
    Result: retailers lose money.

    • markthetruth

      And credit card Balance go UP…

      • Ralfine

        Yes, but the retailers will never see this money.
        They book it, but at the end of the month they don’t have the cash to pay their debts.

        Amazon will have the same problem. They charge everything by credit card.

      • cannuck21

        Never, ever revolve on your credit card….19.8%APR +++. Either cut it up or pay the balance off within the defined time.

        • markthetruth

          your right, but people get desperate and because they know these lawyer will settle it for dimes on a dollar. They don’t care.

          Credit card balances are 850 billion closing in on the 1 Trillion. Just like the student loans.

          the end…

  • markthetruth

    amazon. and

    no way the stock market is a gauge on how the economy is doing. It’s manipulated by Bernanke, and it seem like world revolves around the stock market and why because , it’s because Half the money doesn’t


    the end…

    • Stock market prices are an indicator of the declining value of the dollar relative to the value of companies. The dollar gets devalued: Stock prices rise without the companies they represent doing any better. It takes more dollars to buy a given stock however poorly the company may be doing. Aggregate stock prices are now a better indicator of the devaluation of the dollar then they are of the value of a company.

      • markthetruth

        Right but stocks don’t create jobs ….

        the end…

    • hero

      Market goes up because most companies make a lot of moneys overseas.

      • Capri388

        You cannot use the DOW as an economic indicator, The GDP reflects we are headed for another recession, but yet the DOW is at a all time high, why? Because of the FED money pump called QE. This only creates a false sense of consumer confidence and is a short term bandage. It can never address long term problems. When the FED just adds invisible money to the system , it goes to the banksters and investors that are happy for the free money.People like JP Morgan, where the money for EBT filters through likes this as well. The more people on government programs fatten up their wallets. The problem is not capitalism, its crony capitalism with the merger of corporation and government that continues to allow lobbyists and special interests groups to line pockets and expect paybacks abd bailouts in return.

    • Ohio Mark

      I like markthetruth’s “Grocery Bag Indicator”. That should be the true CPI.

  • fred

    Amazon. Everyone is buying everything at Amazon.

    And why not?

    Why would I go to a retail store to pay more and stand in line for 30 minutes and then carry everything home when I can sit in my LaZ-Boy, find the best selection and the best prices, and have it arrive at my door with free shipping two days later?

    Weep for retail and then buy stock in Amazon.

    It was sad when buggy whip manufacturers lost their jobs I bet but that didn’t stop the manufacturing of automobiles.

    • Jagrick

      I don’t quite buy into that. If that is true then why is Sweet Bay (grocery chain) closing stores? 3000 people will be looking for work.

      • Because Sweet Bay does not stock and market as well as its competition. Example: Milk bought at Sweet Bay spoils within my fridge two days before its expiration date. Bought at Publix it lasts beyond its expiration date.

        • I thought you said pubix, and I got a chuckle.
          I buy the very expensive (more than gas, gallon for gallon) Greenway ‘organic’ milk, and it lasts like a month or so, and tastes like cream.
          Makes me wonder what rancid crap they’re putting in the other watered-down milk.

    • Makati1

      Sorry, but Amazon (online) sales are not large enough to be affecting so many stores. Americans love to shop, handle the merchandise, impulse buy. They go on line when they don’t have the means or car to get to the big box stores. I use online to send a birthday gift to my grandson because I can do it from the Philippines and know he will get it in South Carolina a few days later. If I lived in the US, I would buy it and send it or take it myself, IF I had the money to do so.
      No, this is because Americans are getting poorer. Soon online will slow and contract as even that will be too expensive, wait and see.
      BTW: NOTHING is free, you pay for that shipping in the cost of the product. Somebody pays, and it is YOU.

      • markthetruth

        No your wrong I research all my items Prices and Can’t beat amazons free shipping and no tax. and don’t have to waste time and gas.

        the end…

        • J

          I feel as if you may not know exactly what the term “the end” means.

    • MeMadMax

      We lost many grocery stores from the big box type places like Smiths and Albertsons up and down our main street here in los angeles…. But it’s because people want their fresh vegetables shipped via fedex by amazon right?

  • Tim

    “Barnes & Noble

    Forecast store closings: 190 to 240, per company comments”

    Wow. I’m surprised by this, but I guess I shouldn’t be. I was at the local Barnes & Noble yesterday looking for Dr. Stephen Sinatra’s latest book. They had it in the store, but it was $20. I figured I could get it for less on Amazon. And I did. A few dollars of savings here and there adds up. I can spend the savings on my greatest pleasure–food!

    • MeMadMax

      B&N has been in permanent decline since the bubble popped in 08′

    • markthetruth

      I hope everyone on here and everybody else “READS THE BIBLE” It’s what we need to get

      Country back to the Life we are meant to Live by his words of wisdom and sacrifice and remember Even the Rich or Poor , No one is immortal So the Rich die just like us and they can’t take there Stuff with them . The Most Important thing in life that you can take with you is your SOUL. And That’s What you will be Judge on. So don’t worry about what the other guy has, it doesn’t mean he’s a better man.

      the end…

      • The Wise

        HAHAHAHAHA…..there IS no invisible sky daddy, you idiot! Grownups with imaginary friends need to be fed feet-first to a wood-chipper. Starting with YOU!

        End THIS!

        • Lops

          I pity you. I truly do.

          • Colin

            I have read the Bible. This collection of books has contradictions. It is accurate when the information can be verified by outside sources.

        • markthetruth

          I thing is for sure ,We all know where you will end up.

          the end…

          • Pagan

            “We all know where you’ll be going”

            When you disagree with a christian, he will threat you with violence.

          • markthetruth

            Christian’s don’t condone violence on on anyone, including harm to your own body .

            the end…

          • hardtimes

            You don’t condone it, but are willing to commit it and try to hide it or justify it. History of Christianity my friend.

          • markthetruth

            False, those that did betrayed their Faith for Greed. And payed for it in the end.

            the end…

          • Bad_Mr_Frosty

            No more so or less so than any other religion. Plus Christianity ended pagan practices such as human sacrifice and polygamy. Our brains are wired for spirituality and one could do far worse than the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.

          • You’re an idiot.

          • And who threatened who with violence? I see reading for comprehension is not your strong suit.

          • cpgone

            Not me. Believe as you wish.
            The Bible is accurate/ If it wasn’t the non-believers would of pointed it out by now. The muslims agree Jesus existed.

      • farang

        99% of DC politicians profess to be religious and moral and ethical…just ask them!

        You have “Faith” in an ancient Middle Eastern deity named Yam if you are Christian or Jew. He was the son of El, as was Ba’al. They hated each other. That is why the OT talks of Yam’s followers murdering Ba’al priests then gloating as if murder is some kind of wonderful religious experience to brag about.

        All MYTHICAL, all astrological in nature. Me? I’ve attempted to advance past 3000 BC. Not easy with uneducated folks spouting gibberish. Educate yourself: Wikipedia “Yam.” and open your eyes to reality.

    • godozo

      As long as Amazon exists, bookstores will never be a profitable business. They get books cheaper, send them out cheaper than you can buy them, Amazon uses books as their loss leaders (they don’t try to make profits off books, they try not to lose too much selling them), and they have EVERYTHING. Plus the bookreading public had pretty much embraced them as their go-to source for books.

      • Mondobeyondo

        Bookstores – apart from niche sections such as comic book characters, Rachael Ray cookbooks, irrelevant crap such as “David Copperfield’s World of Magic”, and such as –

        are dead.

  • My personal experience? Amazon and retiring the credit cards = few if any jaunts to the mall for recreational shopping.

  • K

    Michael you hit the main reason, lack of disposable income. Fred you hit the second reason internet sales. Now let me tell you the third reason. Lack of caring about your customer. I went into Best Buy to purchase my most recent computer. I had been buying my computers from them for over a decade. Their net site said they had the computer I wanted in stock, at my local store. No they did not. They had only 3 desktops in the entire store. 2 top of the line, and 1 bottom of the line. Nothing in the middle. When I asked an employee, why the web site said they had the machine I wanted? When they did not. I was told the web site is never right. I will never go back. A couple of months before that, Kmart had a camera on sale I was interested in. Was there on the first day of the sale. They did not even have 1. When I asked an employee, how they could be out so quickly? I was told they never came in. Further they seldom had even half, of what was featured in the ads. Will never go back there either. First rule of business. You have to have something to sell, that the customer wants.

    • Makati1

      Be patient, your income will soon mean you only shop at the farmer’s market and the local dry goods store, when you have money to shop at all.

    • Mondobeyondo

      Business 101:

      Make your customers happy.
      If you don’t make your customers happy, soon you will have have no more customers. Why not? Because your ex-customers will have been unhappy, and will have left you for someone else who could provide a hint of a profit. It’s how the world works these days. Sorry, it’s true. IBut you say, “It’s not true!!” Trust me,
      it’s true. Sorry, but.. c’est la vie.
      No customers = no future profits,.sales, etc

      • godozo

        Plus the one person you made dissatisfied (whether you did it or you were betrayed by central supply) will tell ten people how the store made you unhappy. And THEY will start avoiding your stores in response.

      • Yep – not only do they lose the sale, but their competitor GAINS the sale.

      • libsarescum

        Where did you take Business 101? Cracker Jack School? Business 101 is MAXIMIZE sales and MINIMIZE costs. THAT IS IT!!!

        • EdM01

          Apparently Business 101 has dropped “keeping the customer satisfied” out of the maximizing sales part of the equation. ;^)

          • libsarescum

            You maximize profits and sales by attracting GOOD customers. But to stay in business you have to maximize PROFITS and minimize COSTS. PERIOD!!!

    • ShootyMcBang

      Yeah, bait and switch never goes out of style.

  • Why so “sadly” about Federal government cutbacks? It sounds like Michael is speaking out of both sides of his mouth, highlighting the disaster created by overspending, lamenting the problem of excessive government debt and taxes, and then becoming very “sad” when the government finally cuts its budget. Too many of us like Michael are double minded, wanting it both ways. This split personality is a microcosm of our divided, uncertain and leaderless nation.

    • godozo

      View it as an indicator of how screwed America is economically. If the government stops spending, there’s so little true economy that things will only get worse, if the government keeps spending we’ll eventually go into hyperinflation and lose our (non-gold/silver) wealth that way.

      Either way, we’re screwed. Big time…it’ll get worse, and probably never get better.

    • MichaelfromTheEconomicCollapse

      Government cutbacks are good, but I am never happy to see people out of work.

      Unfortunately there are not going to be private sector jobs for those people to go to.


      • Orange Jean

        So true Michael!

        I happen to be a Federal employee – on the one hand I do think we need to cut Federal spending drastically, and I will continue to support that no matter if it costs me personally.

        However, I do not think the way the sequestration will work is the best way of doing it, as it’s big cuts without setting priorities in what are needs vs. wants.

        There is also the impact on local markets where those who lose their jobs (at this time, they are talking mostly cutting expenses through not hiring new when people leave, dropping contractors, and furloughs for GS employees who will lose 20% of their income.) It may also come to RIFs, but not at this point. This is for a huge number of people (estimated over a million), and those people are not going to be spending money they don’t have.

        I had been trying to help my local economy by eating out at least once a week (and I tip generously), but I had to warn the places I’m a “regular” at that I will not be able to continue to come in anywhere as often. Overall, I’m cutting discretionary spending drastically to prepare myself… I’m sure I’m not the only one, and I live in an area (Hampton Roads) that is very dependent on government employee spending to support local business.

        Good article overall Michael, don’t let the nay sayers get you down!

      • markthetruth

        True, almost a net ZERO because they go back to the Government payroll for unemployment , Food Stamps and whatever ever else.

        the end…

        • Orange Jean

          Not so if furloughed and they do it one day a week, which is what I’m being told. Most states you’d have to be unemployed for at least a week to apply for unemployment. So anyone furloughed will get their income cut by about 20%, having their hours cut from 40 to 32 a week.

          It’s also my understanding that if you are a contractor (that is working as a contractor, even a single individual) you are considered self-employed and won’t be able to collect unemployment either.

          • K

            Jean, had not heard about the furloughs. If they last any amount of time. They could start to pull down, how much you get in retirement. If you have a system based on how much you take home.

          • Orange Jean

            That is correct… as is the fact salaries have been frozen now for several years (all affects potential retirement).

            But at any rate, the retirement wouldn’t be much… at this point, if I continued working for the Feds in current system mine would be something less than $400 a month… certainly not the huge benefit some people seem to think it is… (and employees also contribute to it).

          • DiscouragedOne

            I work as a contractor all the time (through agencies) and I can file unemployment with the agency as my ex-employer. I think that would only apply to 1099 contractors.

          • markthetruth

            Your right, independent contractor get nothing taken out of their paychecks and have to file a Schedule C.

            the end…

          • Orange Jean

            Well… that may have changed since the last time I considered working as a contractor…

          • markthetruth

            These are Union Jobs!!!

            Government jobs are Unionized and will never go for a 1 day furloughed and will always make sure they get unemployment. Also 1 day furloughs are destructive to employer and end up costing more as tasks are rush to be finished and jeopardize safety, mistakes are made , and disrupt the whole organizations.

            private contractor such a construction,building maintenance. ext. are union also ,and if it happen not to be, if their not union it will the company will rather lay

      • Hawaiianfive0

        I agree….it is going to hurt a lot of people including myself. I am a contractor for federal, not considered self-employed. I work for a company that the feds contract out, so I would qualify for unemployment, but not sure how it works with furloughs. Our budget is tighter than ever and we will be basically be operating on only temporary funding after this month. There is no budget. I don’t even make that much in my salary…certainly not enough to survive everything now. I understand that there are many feds that make a lot, but overall I think there are many employed that make less than what most think now with as many contractors that are out there. I understand the cuts are needed, but it will have devastating consequences in many communities especially in those areas of defense. I read an article recently that said that communities like Charleston, SC are going to get hit really hard. The problem I have with the cuts is I don’t think they are really going to do anything because they are going to spend that money elsewhere. This is going to affect more than federal workers. I read a book “Fool Me Twice” and basically they are going to put that money into climate change and their “green” agenda using the military, so in reality we are not saving money, but the money will be spent elsewhere and distributed to other countries. We will not be reducing the defecit by this. It will be like spread our wealth to other countries to fight climate change, poverty and peace keeping using our military for it. This is just another one of Obama’s schemes and a way to hurt this country and break it down. It’s really scary. It does seem like this is what will happen, so I would not be surprised if the big defense cuts do happen. It is smoke in mirrors…as usual.

        • Orange Jean

          I agree with you 100%.

          • Hawaiianfive0

            Thanks…I just read what you wrote about the retirement. I agree with that too. It is not that good at all. I have a family member who will receive retirement from federal and it is not good at all…not enough to survive on after medical it only amounts to about $500 month. I know others with the fed retirement and they were upset to find that it is not good. Maybe for those years ago that got in it was good, but not anymore unless they are making a lot of money maybe. As low as many will receive I don’t know how they will even be able to pay the federal retirements with the situation we are in.

    • Budget and deficit. The big myths of our time. If you could create money out of thin air (all money is created out of thin air now — so the question is only who gets to do it) would you need to budget? If you could create money out of thin air, would you need to borrow or go into debt to buy that new car?

      So if the federal government can create money out of thin air, why does it have to have a budget? Why does it have to borrow money at all? Why doesn’t it just create the money it needs out of thin air and pay for what it needs like social security, or roads or an air craft carrier? Why does it need to tax us as an income source if it can just create money out of thin air?

      The answer is that it is not the government who creates money out of thin air, as many of our greatest founding fathers, like Franklin, Jefferson and Madison hoped; it is the banks that get to create our money out of thin air. Private corporate entities get to create our money out of thin air. So our government has to borrow from the banks, and we have to be taxed so that the government has an income source to pay its debt to the banks.

      And until this changes, and the government gets the right to create our money, and not a special class of people we call banksters, we will stay in debt serfdom.

  • Tom, KC

    It wasn’t too long ago that retail chains were being demonized for putting mom and pop stores out of business! I don’t mind retail chains now feeling the same thing to internet retailers.

    Let me give you an example. I want a pair of specific crossfit shoes from Reebok. Dick’s sporting goods has put out of business nearly every athletic apparal store in my area except for a couple specialty running stores. Well a common practice for Dick’s is to say we don’t have that item in stock but we can order it from you online. That annoys me to no end!! So what I do is I order diectly from Reebok’s site the exact shoe I want with even more color choices to choose from. And that is only after I price check other places online.

    Since the Ipad came out I haven’t bought a single physical book. I buy them digitally.

    It doesn’t help when local governments raise sale taxes. Sales taxes in my city used to be 6.5 10 yrs ago. Now they are 9.5!! Not only do I pay more tax due to higher rate, I’m paying more through normal inflation.

    So i’ll prefer to avoid taxes, auto traffic, unhelpful store employees, wasted time out of the day every time.

    • DiscouragedOne

      True, but it also means people losing jobs. I really try to shop at my local stores, but after so many experiences looking for it and finally giving up then buying it online, sometimes I just want to skip the “looking” part. Take bags for an older vacuum cleaner I have that I still like to use and works perfectly fine, yet it is not high end like my kirby that I know where to find bags for it. I look online, it tells me 3 stores that supposedly carry it, I go there…no bags. Now, I just buy a years supply at a time online (not that expensive), saves me $ and a lot of hassle.

  • Mondobeyondo

    Best Buy: In decline.
    Sears: Dying.
    JC Penney: Dying
    Circuit City: Already dead.
    Incredible Universe: Dead.

    The “old school” brick and mortar stores are dying a horrible death.

  • Barterninja

    My area is seeing a small boom in businesses, but they are the small to medium size ones that smart enough to only have one location in a major area instead of three to five like Wal-Mart. I wouldn’t be surprise if Wal-Mart and other multiple stores in one area in my area close down and the smaller businesses begin to pop up. I just hope one Gamestop stays open in my area as there is one game I want to buy next month before everything goes screwy.

    • cpgone

      ” wouldn’t be surprise if Wal-Mart and other multiple stores in one area in my area close down”
      Wow. thanks for the laugh. if china mart closes ,the area is probably detroit-like

  • MeMadMax

    Best Buy and Barnes n Noble have been in decline for a long time now however. Along with Sears and Kmart which have been losing to wal mart for over a decade now…
    Best Buy is losing because at one time, it was thought you needed their support for electronics and was willing to spend the extra bucks for it. Now their support sucks and people don’t want to spend money for extra support.
    B&N is losing because of the internet, plain and simple.
    Sears and Kmart have been dominated by wal-mart because they thing they are like best buy….

    Gg the end…

    • DiscouragedOne

      The customer experience at B&N has also gone downhill, at least at the one by me.

  • condaggitt

    Radio Shack Circuit City Best buy have tossed their regular customers into the garbage. I grew up in a working class home and everyone would fix things…I knew how to solder and built my own CB radio from Heathkit when i was i think 10. Handling tools was a big part of growing up.

    Today its all throw away and if you did need something all they have in the stores is the $29.99 high priced fancy gold plated oxygen free stuff, and the $4.95 special you have to order on line.

    I get so frustrated i can fix something in an hour if i could find a store and just buy the part.

    • Aeffesstoo

      Tried to buy a telescoping antenna mast at Radio Shack. They didn’t even know what it is. This is at a company that was created from the CB, TV, ham market. All it is now is a mall cellphone kiosk that happens to have a store front.

    • Ralph

      Walking into a K mart is like going through a time warp. They look just like they did in the 70s. Video stores like Blockbuster are a dinosaur. If $85B is all that’s being cut, it’s not nearly enough. The federal goobermint spends about$3600B/yr. A 2.36% cut is chump change.

      • DiscouragedOne

        They didn’t have pantries in the 1970s.

      • Mondobeyondo

        K-Mart didn’t keep up with the times, which is why they’re crashing and burning – along with Sears (their parent company) and J.C. Penney.

        • What do I know?

          Sears will be next to go down the tubes. As their tool and outdoor garden department has shrunk to almost nil items, the male shopper no longer has a “man cave” to visit. So, because he has no point to go to Sears any more, which means the wife will stop visiting as well, which means that there will be a slow demise to the future of Sears’ existence!

      • Ivan Sviridoff

        I was in Lithuania and was shocked how MUCH BETTER and bigger their stores are than the ones in the USA and how much more sleection and lower orices they got in a country of just 3 million people.

    • markthetruth

      That’s the issue though, Radio Shack was about being Creative, bread boards,resistors,capacitors, resistors,capacitors,leds,chips. Being innovated using electronic components to build something.

      I”ll bet, alot of Inventors, and Universities and Engineers needed components on the fly and Radio Shack was the place to go.

      the end…

      • tacoma

        Radio Shack, Heathkit, etc are long gone. This is the 21th century. But that does not mean people can’t build their own things. There are many things people can build and customize – housing renovation, even build your own PC. The ‘trouble’ if you will, is the Gen Y and younger folks just don’t have the create, design & build culture. What they do have is the consume culture. As to the Gen Z (20 and younger), all they want is to turn on their smart phones and tweet all day long on the most trivial matters. This is why the Heathkit kind of stores today can only be found by the thousands in the gigantic manufacturing factories of southern China.

        • markthetruth

          TRUE, The issue with Gen Z is not their fault though, they are having those created years 3-6 ,exploring, playing in the dirt, using their imagination taken away from them as they are put into Structured setting ,daycare,preschool at 7-10 they can’t go outside by themselves because the parents are afraid them will be abducted . By time their let lose it to late they already lost that natural childhood.

          the end…

        • I remember

          Actually, there is a huge DIY movement among the young. A very capable one. So don’t despair. The problem with retail is simple. The internet is the new shopping mall. End of story. End of the B+M store.

    • I wish I had your skills. I just try to fix things by taking them apart and trying to decide which part might be broken and where I can salvage a new one.

      • DiscouragedOne

        I can’t either, but my husband can fix just about anything (especially if it is electronic), so I am lucky to have him.

    • cpgone

      knock yourself out repairing a $20 dvd player. Never had one break. Electronics are too cheap to fix and most stereo stuff is not worth stealing or repairing. The high end stuff , maybe,but thats for rich people who dont care.

      components are available still . Had a friend build a guitar amp.

    • Mondobeyondo

      Radio Shack is going down faster than the Titanic. It’s a shame. That company is something like 85 years old…?

      The old “legacy” companies are slowly going the way of the brontosaurus, stegosaurus and the T. Rex.

  • Jodi

    I don’t know if anybody else has noticed but lately I’ve seen lots of left over stuff from Christmas. I’m not talking about decorations, I’m talking selves full of clothing & other various items deeply discounted from the Christmas season. It’s unreal, truly a sign people are not buying.

    • Mondobeyondo

      Guess the kids got tired of the stuffed dolls, huh?

    • markthetruth

      Mostly lighting, no one could afford the electric bill.

      the end…

      • DiscouragedOne

        Lots of people in my neighborhood had lights. We decorated, with all LED lights.

    • Mondobeyondo

      Yes. And it’s interesting to see that many retailers anticipated a prosperous holiday season, from their Black Friday results. Oh well. You can’t win ’em all.

    • Hans Mueller

      It’s the Consumer revolt that we started. It is all about Consumer revenge against the Inside Jobbers, Chemtrailers, Wallstreet Scammers etc. No spending means the oversized, power-abusing, arrogant and evil corporations will have to go or be downsized.

  • Jodi

    It’s hard to believe, I used to work for Office Max in the 90s & we were always constantly busy. I would have to imagine with the way things are going these days, places like Office Max, Staples & Office Depot are now struggling. With each passing day more & more businesses go out of business the less people have a need for these type of stores. Kinda sad!

    • DiscouragedOne

      Let’s see, the last time I was at Staples (last Spring) I was looking for the plastic things that go under the office chairs to protect the rug. I was so appalled at the $80+ price that I went to K-mart and bought nice area rugs instead, for less than half the price. Are they serious?

      • TtT Engine

        $20 or so in CostCo.

  • Glenn

    We are not is a depression/recession…. We are in transformation. The economy, when it does come back, won’t look anything like it does today. A lot of the stores that are closing are being forced to close because of the rise of online shopping and other online activity. The era of the Big Box Store is over. Enter the Online Revolution. Business owners need to recognize and either get on top of this wave and ride it, or get crushed by it. Over $1 Trillion US was spent online last year. One store in China did over $3 Billion in sales in one 24 hr period. “The times, they are achangin’.”


    This problem can’t be fixed. That train left the station when they voted in N.A.F.T.A. The economy can’t grow if the jobs are going overseas or down south. What every they do it will crash.

    • libsarescum

      NAFTA was a treaty betwn Mexico , the US and Canada. Most of the manufacturing jobs went to China.

      • RICHARD

        I think you will find that a lot of our jobs went to Mexico first then was shipped from there to CHINA and alot of other countries on the Asian rim. Our government is now working on a new trade agreement that is for just the Asia rim. That should finish us off, not that we already are finished..

        • libsarescum

          The reason that most manufacturing jobs are going away is mainly because the greedy unions, our stupid legal system and government regulations. It is almost impossible to do business in this country.

          • verycold

            Unions in the private sector are a small percentage. It is the public sector where they hover. However, much of the damage was done over the decades by unions pushing companies to consider other options or just close their doors. Unions clearly helped improve the pay and quality of the workplace. However, they just simply went to far and they won’t admit it ever. WE lost the textile, furniture, paper, rubber, and steel industries to name just a few. The buildings they left behind are a reminder of our stupidity.

          • DiscouragedOne

            They won’t admit it because they want more members = more money, which is pretty much all they care about, so sad.

          • Hans Mueller

            It is not stupidity. The government are NWO whores. They chemtrail us to death and are building undergound and overseas facilities for themselves. Once North America is finishes, it will be given back to the Indians along with the non-batiuve population as slaves to the Indiens, and you know, tat will probably be the right things to do keeping in mind the ENORMOUS GREED and ARROGANCE of the North Americans.

          • mikem59

            so true, but still does not make abandoning the american worker right.

          • libsarescum

            It is “right” if they want to stay in business. It is called survival, and besides the American Worker did it to themselves by becoming greedier and electing liberal democRATS scumbags in government.

          • It is not right. See my post above explaining why it is not right.

            Something that is rigged in favor of a few to the detriment of many is never right when it is sanctioned by the government. A corporate charter, issued by the government, sanctions privatizing profits and socializing losses.

            It wasn’t always that way. Initially in this country corporate charters only lasted 20 years and in order to be renewed, they corporations had to convince the legislature of the state of incorporation that the corporation had really done something of benefit to society as whole or the corporation lost its charter.

            We need to get back to this concept. Corporations because they are a creature of the state have an obligation to other people within the state not to cause undue harm to those who work for it or to those who are affected by harms corporations cause.

            If someone wants to do something for profit only, without concern for the rest of society, he should do it as sole proprietorship, where the does not have the protection of limited liability.

          • shawn_von_socialist

            the founders were socialists who killed conservatives and corporatists thats what the amercian revolutionary war was about and i am ready to do the same..

            calling democrats – scumbags when republicans have done starve the beast “starve the republic” for thirty plus years is going to get all you rethugicans-hanged by a short rope just wait and see you are even hated in your gerrymandered red states there is more socialists in red-states then rethugicans

            i will kill conservatives all day every-day soon as you peckerwoods try a rebellion

            and i cant wait to kill some conservatives
            death to republicans “conservatives and libertarians kill them all

          • libsarescum

            Actually the first English settlers in the U.S. initially tried a socialist economy and they almost starved to death, because the lazy parasites like you didn’t want to work, and the producers stop producing. After that fiasco they went back to the NATURAL human system which is CAPITALISM. And nothing will make me happier than to re-open the “ovens” put every socialist maggot parasite in them.

          • jim

            Problem is, conservatives have all of the guns and know how to use them. So commie, go ahead and bring your rope. We’ll be waiting.

          • Unions unfortunately have been a necessary evil to combat the inherent evil of the corporate business model. What is that inherent evil?

            Entities incorporate primarily to “limit liability.” What does limited liability really mean? It means that profits are privatized and losses are socialized.

            So we have a system where a few people — shareholders, officers and directors of a corporation — get the benefit of everything the corporation is successful at, and then every action or inaction of a corporation that is not profitable, and that causes harm, gets put on the backs of others in the society.

            Unions came into existence to try to limit the concept of “limited liability,” because they had no choice as workers were often the victims of it.

            Until we change the “for profit” corporation into something that benefits a far greater number of people than just shareholders, officers and directors, then unions will be necessary to limit the harm caused by the “for profit” model.

            But I don’t think unions are a very good substitute for a much better business model that includes a far greater number of people who are responsible for a corporation’s success.

          • Dave_Mowers

            ..and yet magically the German minimum wage is $25.00’s an hour and they get free health care and college? How come those German’s always seem to figure out how to do it?

            Oh yeah, they have laws barring executive pay beyond a certain range to the lowest paid worker. Those darned Germans and their fair society we should fight another war with them those darned evil socialists.

          • Helga

            they take about 30% right out of your paycheck just for healthcare. that was 20 years ago when I still lived there. My mother recently toldme that people are fighting over 1 euro per hour part time jobs. germany is even more screwed than the USA.

          • No, the reason this is happening is because of corrupt politicians and greedy CEOs

          • jiggs

            Ah yes, classic con talking points in one graph. And the media is in on it, and WMDs got moved to Syria. ‘Tard.

          • libsarescum

            The same WMD’s that your tin pot “republican that supports a kenyan communist” general Powell, Hillary, and most democRATS in congress said they existed?

        • verycold

          A manufacturing company I know recently moved much of their business to Mexico from NJ. The costs to stay in NJ were 4x greater. On top of that, the CEO of that company said the work ethic is better in Mexico. The US is declining rapidly.

          • Jesse Fleming

            Thats why we need to tax cheap child made imports to the point of where its cheaper to make it here if they sell it here.

        • Robert

          Look at the new dodge challenger body made in Canada and engines made in Mexico we are in serious trouble

          • RICHARD

            Robert this country has been in trouble for many years. Ross Perot told us back in the 90ies that if N.A.F.T.A. went through the only thing we would hear is the sucking sound of our job leaving..I tend to think he was right.

          • quercus454

            He was right, but as always the main stream political establishment marginalized him. We saw the exact same action this last year against Ron Paul. It seems when ever we get an honest man who speaks the truth, the powers that be work over time to destroy him.

          • Winston Reckert

            Why are there so many Canadian shoppers that are trying to get stuff for FREE undeservedly and scam the merchants, the shop owners?

        • mikem59

          reeses peanut butter cups are made in mexico (hershey)………you can’t drink the water there but its o.k. to have our food made there. very scary.

      • mikem59

        it does not matter which country the jobs went to, it is the fact that they left this country.

    • markthetruth

      N.AF.T.A. when written had NOTHING TO Jobs ,it was about agricultural goods and other freely traded import and exported goods. But like the tax code big corporations figure away around the bill just like the tax code.

      the end…

      • tacoma

        NAFTA is a trade treaty between 3 countries – Canada, US & Mexico. It basically eliminates duties for a large range of goods, but not services and labor. Also, many farm goods and cultural goods are excluded. It covers energy resource trade, so that such energy trade between the 3 countries can serve to enhance continental security in case of overseas disruptions.

        Under NAFTA, US-Canada trade took off and today is the biggest bilateral trade in the world – about $400 billion. More than 40 million jobs in the US make things to export to Canada. US-Mexico trade is far smaller due to the lower skill of Mexico labor and lower ability to buy US made products. There is a net loss of low-end US jobs to Mexico due to NAFTA, but the loss is made up by more than 10 times from the increased jobs making things to export to Canada. So the hard facts is NAFTA is a net job creator for the 3 countries.

        By far the biggest loss of jobs in the US is the 1-way China trade. But there is no free trade treaty between US and China. This situation is 100% the deliberate doing of American corporations who setup shops in China and export goods back to the US. Without a free trade agreement, the US can impose import duty on such China export at will. To discourage this one-way trade. But the US government has never done so. And so, the current situation is also 100% the policy of the US government of the past 20 years.

        • cpgone

          Agree. NAFTA is small potato’s compared to Chindia

        • quercus454

          Here are some interesting US trade deficit figures:

          EU – $116 billion – of that we have a deficit of 25 billion with Ireland and 20 billion with Italy.

          S Korea – $16.6 billion.

          Japan – $76 billion

          Mexico – $61 billion

          Canada – $32 billion

          China – 312 billion

          Total trade deficit 2012 – $736 billion

          If you notice NAFTA brought us a total trade deficit of $93 billion.

          Since Bush senior US trade deficits are nearing a total of 10 trillion dollars.

      • mikem59

        it was planned from the get go. we were played and still being played.

    • tacoma

      It’s clear you know nothing about NAFTA, except looking for some easy target to blame. You are part of the reason why so many jobs are shipped overseas by US corporations. They find millions of US workers lazy, dumb, uneducated, can’t take orders, experts in blaming others, and demand a pay way above their qualifications.

      • DiscouragedOne

        I agree, but I would still like to know what you do for a living and how much you make. That is because although I agree with you, I also think many CEOs are making way too much money, yet they will be the first to say what you just said.

      • DiscouragedOne

        Also, I would like to ask who are those workers being replaced with? If they are working for a bowl of rice, your post has zero credibility. What I am saying is, you leave out the fact how much less Chinese workers cost, and Americans can’t compete with that, period.

      • Cuz Vinny

        no, if your a ceo of a company do you pay your workers a fair wage or get chinese people to do it for cents an hour and then justify it by saying U.S workers are lazy, dumb, uneducated and can’t take orders.? Chinese people take too many orders there whole life is laid out for them so if thats what you think you should move to China and work in a sweatshop if you agree with that otherwise shut the f*** up cause the more i think about your post the more p*ssed im getting

        • tacoma

          First, there is hardly such a thing a ‘fair’ in capitalism, and certainly none in American style of capitalism. Wages and prices are decided by supply-demand, competitive advantage, the maximum price the seller can sell. It is not decided by any concept of ‘fairness’. It is amazing that you don’t know such basic things – are you a high school dropout?

          Second, your understanding of China and its bosses and workers is based on highly simplified, ideologically biased American culture and media reports. They paint a picture of a backward 3rd world Communist totalitarian state commanding a billion uneducated stupid workers working for a buck a day. Who proceeded to ‘steal’ US wealth and jobs.

          Have you been to China? Have you worked there, or conduct business deals? Clearly not. But I have. And thousands of American and European executives have. They know the reality of China, and they put that knowledge to a test by investing a total of $10 trillion dollars over the past 20 years. Do you think these executives who have spent such money that belong to the shareholders stupid? And you are smarter than they ?

          China filed invention patents is the third largest in the world, after US and the EU. Some ‘dummies’. GM, the big auto giant, have more manufacturing plants in China, making more fancy Buick and Chevy, than the US market. And so does Audi, VW, Toyota. Yes, Volvo is now a Chinese auto company, and they make models to export to the US. Some ‘sweat shops’.

          You are also clearly in trouble, a victim of the US economy. Also, a victim of your own ignorance. You’re pi**. But if you have a brain, direct your attention and work for a solution right here in the USA. Because USA troubles is 100% self-inflicted. If you still don’t understand, read up on Wall Street bankster.

    • verycold

      Market Watch posted an article the other day in which it was discussed the runaway companies vs the companies that move based on end use. The percent of runaways was around 20 percent. Of that group some are returning because their end market is here and now costs are getting even enough to warrant them coming back. However those that are just expanding their geography will NOT be returning. So this notion that manufacturing is coming back is more media rubbish for the most part.

    • Mondobeyondo

      NAFTA is just one rung of the free trade/globalization ladder. It’s all designed to “level the playing field”. Problem is, it will shock most Americans who are not used to living in a third world country.

    • Dave_Mowers

      ..but Mitt Romney got his money and that is all that counts; whether or not the rich get THEIR MONEY.

      • Craig Stettson Jr.

        Not only. If you swim against their Agenda you not only remain poor, but your income gets destroyed. And now it is THEIR turn to get in trouble.

        • David Mowers

          Another sign there is no “free market” and capitalism is a fraud upon the working man.

    • They are going to “catalog shops ‘n Online
      Stores – couple of employees for shops ‘n rest gone with severance pay ‘n retrain” Best Buy told us here in Canada. They did not mention Obomacare but it’s obvious they had to find a different way to operate. A paradigm shift….. they gotta beat the system!!!

    • Just remember that GW signed 30 different free trade bills including the most ruinous of them all, several that completely opened-up trade with China, while between Presidents Obama and Clinton, they only signed two free trade bills.

      Also remember that four different times between 2009 and today Democrats in Congress have passed legislation that would have enacted penalties on US companies offshoring their production, and that all four times the Republicans in the Senate have voted in lockstep to filibuster all four bills too.

      Yes, as a Democrat, I might have preferred that President Clinton had vetoed NAFTA even if his veto had been over-ridden (as the Republicans had enough votes to do so) just to show for history that free-trade was exclusively a Republican purview too.

      I will agree that the average American doesn’t stand a chance when the purchasing power of our minimum wage is less than half of what it was 40 years ago, and our government doesn’t stand a chance either with our consumer market is increasingly flooded by cheap foreign-made products that have greatly lowered US wage rates as well as sales tax collections too. Lower wages also translate to lower property taxes being paid to support our schools as well as far-lower rates of contribution to Social Security and Medicare too.

      If Australia can offer their workers a minimum salary of $15.96 per hour and only have a 5.3% unemployment rate today why can’t we? It is because Australia hasn’t signed the WTO and does not allow its employers to offshore production to the lowest bidder, nor does Australia allow cheap foreign-made products to undercut its wages and tax collections at home either!

  • SpunkyBunks

    Corporations (the wealthy class) earn a majority of their profits overseas. They don’t need Americans to sustain their business. The wealthy class does not have the same value system as middle class Americans, therefore it does not care about middle America. They only care about themselves. Politicians pander to the wealthy class and hand out welfare to the expanding lower class so that the lower class doesn’t up-rise and shoot them (French Revolution).

    All of the money being created by hollowing out America and destroying the middle class is being placed into the unstoppable stock market. Where else is the wealthy class going to park all that money? They can’t send it all to the Caymans. And they definitely aren’t using it to maintain the infrastructure in America.

    • SonAmericanRevolution

      Sounds about right!


    • Steve

      You forgot the Corporations, the wealthy class as you called them, are taxed at 35% in the U.S…..the highest corporate tax rate in the world. And you don’t think they should move to a friendlier environment like any sane person? Perhaps your true culprit is the Congress of the U.S. and complacency on the part of the American Public.

      Oh and don’t forget that C Corporations have a Double Taxation: 1 on their profits and 2 on the Dividends they send you that you must report on your tax return.

      Again it is your government tax code that is killing business and jobs in the U.S.

      That is why I left.

      • DiscouragedOne

        I think getting things from the government makes it seem okay to them, even though they are cutting off their own nose to spite their face. France learned not to try to take 2/3 of what people make, but how much damage had to be done first? I do not have a lot of hope.

      • You conveniently left out the huge benefit our government bestows on corporations with the concept of limited liability. See my posts above.

        A high tax rate is meaningless. What is important is how much tax is actually paid. 35% of zero is still zero. And many of our most profitable corporations are paying zero tax.

      • John Johnson

        and i’m leaving too….

    • markthetruth

      “Stuck in the middle with you”
      -Clowns to the left of me
      -Jokers to the right

      the end…

    • tacoma

      Apple has accumulated its considerable profits selling billions of ‘i’ things. After paying for all expenses, Apple today has $120 billion *in cash* sitting pretty in banks. $95 billion of that cash is sitting in overseas banks. Yup. Why don’t Apple bring that money back to the US to invest? Are you kidding?

      • ShootyMcBang

        The solution is a simple one. Quit doing business with companies that use slave labor and reinvest their profits out of this country. If you have more than 100 dollars in ANY bank. You are part of the problem. If we think we are going to solve our problems without being inconvenienced, we are lying to ourselves.

      • And Walmart is making billions and paying its workers so little that over half of its workforce qualifies for and gets food stamps. Talk about corporate welfare.

    • ShootyMcBang

      Yeah, there’s a limit to the amount of money they launder through the to big to fails.

  • Dave Webb

    Discretionary income is down. With ObamaCare eating everyone’s income it is going to get worse. With new taxes planned, the available income will be down as well. The plan is Keynesian Economics. It doesn’t work. If these economic experts are so great, why aren’t they rich? Products will get more expensive and that is the downfall of the retail stores. People simply do not have the money to pay for those retail goods at the increased prices.

    The answer is there are going to be a lot of civilians hurt by the layoffs. There are going to be a lot of government employees layed off as well.

    We cannot afford them. That is the harsh reality. All this super monitoring of people costs money too. The drones are going to be very expensive as well.

    Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, and all of the government employees cannot put him back together again.

    We are going to see a great tooth and claw jungle out there. It is all ready here! But with the closing of much of the retail stores it will get much worse.

    One day we will wake up and that over inflated stock market will have dropped 8,000 points. Just like it did recently in 2008.

    When that happens about half the industrial pension plans in this country will go belly up. (They are hanging on by a thread now.)

    Instead of pushing money into the middle class the government has been all concerned about “too big to fail” companies.

    The only way out of this is to push money towards the working class of this country. And that means do away with anything that costs the middle class more money like tax increases. Vote ObamaCare out now.

    Put a big tax break on owning a house like we had in the 60s. Make owning a house worth someone’s while. All of the counties in this country depend on Real Estate Taxes to survive.

    Change the employment situation. That means standing up to our foreign competitors. Make it inconvenient to push the jobs overseas for large corporations.
    Make saving money profitable again. That will bring money back to this country in a hurry.
    But everything I just said makes sense. Don’t see a lot of sense in this congress or the executive branch.

    • We didn’t need Obamacare/Romneycare which is still a health care system where services are paid by private insurance. We needed a public option for insurance and the right to choose between the public and private sectors. We have public schools to compete with private schools, we still (barely) have a public post office to compete with private postal service, etc. What we don’t have is the right to get public health insurance if that is what we want or all we can afford.

      Because we have no public insurance option as we should have had, this awful substitute (pushed by private insurance) will probably fail unless it morphs into a public insurance system. Maybe if it fails we will get a public option then.

  • Mondobeyondo

    The Internet and online shopping are killing the brick and mortar star – much like video killed the radio star.

    (Those of you who are old enough know… this was the very first video ever broadcast on MTV – back when MTV actually broadcasted music fvideos.

    • DiscouragedOne

      The brick and mortar stores left that want to stay in business need 2 things, good customer service and fair prices (that does not mean they have to be Amazon prices, but fair ones). I did not get good customer service the last time I was as B&N, I guess they did not learn when Borders closed, so guess where I bought my next book…you are right. It has been many years since going to my local B&N was a good experience, but I can remember when it was a very pleasant experience, seems like that place is long gone. I can remember when shopping in general was a much better experience than it is now. Now more then ever, brick and mortar stores should go out of their way to make sure customers get the best experience possible.

      Every time I am at the local chain supermarket, the lines for self-checkout are longer than the lines for human checkout, even if they have a cart full of items, why do you think that is?

      I think some of them may have had experiences like mine, so you don’t have to worry about rude cashiers or bags not making it into the cart if you use self-checkout.

      I don’t go to Wal-Mart very often, but on one of my (very) rare trips there hunting down a holiday decoration, I noticed the same long lines at the self-checkout there.

      Anybody who works in retail should wake up and give the best customer service they are capable of if they want to keep that job. Online competition is one thing, but I will tell you something, the reason I don’t go to some local stores at all anymore has nothing to do with that, it was the bad customer service, lack of items in stock, etc. Let me give you an example, I needed an item that my local store did not have but the clerk in the b&m store actually went in their online system and ordered it for me, now THAT is customer service, and they have kept my business.

      People in general have become much more rude (I am sure many are stressed-out, but being rude does not help). The people who rise above it all and provide good service in spite of any hardships really stand out in a crowd, and help their business to KEEP customers instead of losing them.

      Obviously part of it is the online boom, but stores can still make it worse by not having a policy that values the customers they do have, and/or not enforcing that policy.

  • Junebug

    Sears is way overpriced on its merchandise. I recently checked the price on their Lixit Valves #70 and they wanted $22 for them. They sell for $7.95 in pet stores and livestock catalogs. Its not just this one item, its all their stock. I was amazed to find they were this high. I hadn’t shopped there for years, and when I saw their prices I would never shop there again!

    • Mondobeyondo

      Junebug, it goes beyond that.

      There used to be a loyalty with the Sears brand – especially Craftsman ( their tools offshoot) That is now ruined..Sears had a reputation of backing up their products (service, support, etc). Not anymore.

      Sears today.. it has this aura of 1953 America. Which is bad in many ways, and not so bad in many ways. Which is why I shop at JC Penney, until they go out of business as well. (September of 2015?)

      • K

        Kenmore used to have a decent rep. too. My sister tried to buy a fridge from them. First delivery was damaged on the outside. Second delivery would not run. Third try the manager substituted a Samsung at a special price. Three tries to get a working refrigerator. It is like they have given up…

      • Tim

        I love Craftsman tools. I still have some of the Craftsman tools my father bought when I was a boy.

      • DiscouragedOne

        JCPenney doesn’t have clothes I like anymore either, if I shop at a B&M for clothes, it is usually Macy’s.

    • DiscouragedOne

      When I moved to this area in the late 90s, I bought all my work clothes at Sears. They had a wonderful selection of beautiful clothes at great prices and excellent customer service. Today, I would say the exact opposite about Sears. I can’t find anything I am even tempted to buy to wear to work, the prices are ridiculously high, and the customer service stinks. I stopped going to sears at all about 5 years ago, it is sad how far downhill it has gone.

  • Mondobeyondo

    Walmart in trouble??

    How can that be? Walmart – bastion of all that is cheap and profitable, purveyor of all that is economically successful —

    — is actually LOSING MONEY???

    Say it isn’t so.

  • The Wise

    Who didn’t see this coming?!

    Retailers sell cheap crap, are forced to have higher prices because of overhead -as opposed to Amazon, etc- AND it costs you money to drive there, deal with parking, rude, indifferent, and usually moronic ‘help’…

    I say, “LET ‘EM CLOSE!”

  • Mustard Seed

    Why are major retail chains all over America collapsing?

    Because fiat money is collapsing. Because America has all but lost its reserve currency status. Because commodities are becoming the reserve currency. Because we are printing money at an unheard of rate. Because we are giving that printed money to the Fed (40bil a month) to play the derivatives game. Because everyone in the world holding our dollars is sick of the derivatives game. Because printing that much money causes inflation. Because inflation is a tax. Because taxes are destroying what was left of the American consumer.

    More to come in my family’s little corner of the world (trucking). July 1, 2013, more changes to hours of service rules for truckers. Up to 20% less drive time. Prices will go up, and more companies will go under.

    What else does the summer hold?

  • farang

    Those paying attention back in 2003, heard Alan Greenspan tell the “Meet The Press” host, in reply to the question of how our nation would address the growing Debt problem (that he endorsed by going along with reducing interest rates paid savers and “tax cuts” that went 95% to the top 5% income earners): “We’ll simply MONETIZE THE DEBT.”

    In other words, PRINT AND INFLATE…like I said, those paying attention ran out and bought gold at $340/oz before the words stopped ringing in our ears…

    It is the PLAN and GOAL to create CHAOS and overthrow our Constitutional Republic.

  • Nathan (aka) yhwhzson

    Controlled demolition!

    As the brick and mortar stores go so goes America. Revenues for all levels of government vanish right along with the b&m stores. But what needs to increase as the U.S. declines is TRUTH! As of right now it isn’t just the mainstream media that is perpetuating lies.

    The average citizen is living in the lies that have been shelled out up until this day, with not an iota of appetite for unadulterated truth. This will be the eventual downfall of America.

    The Baltimore Ravens won the Superbowl, so what?! No disrespect to people of Baltimore but what did they get out of it?

    A small infusion of revenue in the short, but overall a year of bragging rights which will feed the blinded soul junk food while as it endures an empty gut!

    It’s distractions like these that have Americans continuing to sleep walk through what will be a shock not only to the wealthiest nation that ever existed on the face of the earth, but also to the rest of earth’s inhabitants due to global economic connectedness.

  • hostage707

    “Inflation is under control”, “Employment is going up”……”Green Shoots everywhere”… what a load of cr-ap. Gotta laugh at the media. They get it wrong every time. Maybe if bush was still in office they would be telling the truth…..

  • dbomb12

    All by design

  • DiscouragedOne

    I have been shopping online for years and I do it more and more, I hate going to brick and mortar stores anymore because it is usually a waste of time and I can’t find what I actually want. Most people I know shop online too, and it is not just Amazon, you can buy just about anything you need online, and it is much easier to find exactly what you want, and to get it for the best price. Sad but true. I even buy most of my clothes online, I know what sizes I wear, and I buy clothes for my family online too, and give online gift certificates to LLBean and Land’s End, it is what people do these days.

    Part of the decline of stores is definitely due to this, they have less and less staff, the waits get longer and longer, and I end up regretting going there. The last time I was at the grocery store I felt like I was interrupting the conversation between my cashier and the one next to her, who came over and stood right next to her to talk more about some person she was upset with (I do NOT need to know her drama). When she was done ringing me up, she asked if everything was alright. So, the second I can buy my groceries online for a reasonable price, let me give you one guess what I am going to do. At least if those same people are packing my groceries in a warehouse where I don’t have to put up with them, I will be spared their rudeness. My local grocer will do your shopping for you and you just come and pick it up at a specified time, for a $5 charge…now THAT makes me want to give them my business. My local grocer is now going to get more of my business than the chain, with some cheaper prices, but a bad customer experience too much of the time, the aforementioned incident was not the first time, there was the time the packer didn’t put one of my bags in the cart and when I came back 15 minutes later to get it they had already put my stuff back on the shelves, I complained to corporate about that one, and unfortunately there are many other bad experiences with this major chain grocery store.

    After a trip around the holidays to a store I won’t mention the name of, we were the victims of credit card fraud, and we relate that trip to it (we suspect a store employee was behind it). We were not charged and thank God for things like LifeLock, but still it was a bad experience. It is sad if I feel safer buying online than I do at the store.

    It is sad but true that even one very bad experience is enough to turn many people off when they have an alternative, buying online. While brick and mortar experiences get worse and worse, online experiences get better and better (I know, I have been doing it for years, and it is not because I don’t try to support my local businesses, I do…but going to the mall has become and ordeal I can’t handle more than once or twice in a year). I try to give my business to every local business I want to see not go out of business, but if they give me a bad experience, I don’t care to spend my hard earned dollars there.

  • FounderChurch Church

    by FounderChurch@Gmail.Com

    Imagine a pie to be divided. No mater how big or small the pie, the pie is all there is to divide. In a family everyone gets a varying piece of the pie, and in a nation everyone gets a varying piece of the pie.

    So, there are two problems here. 1. How the pie is divided, and 2. How big the pie is.

    Interestingly enough HOW the pie is divided, determines HOW BIG the pie is, because the people that divide the pie are the people that make the pie bigger or smaller. They are the bakers of the pie.

    If some are baking and others are just sitting around the pie will be smaller. If everyone is hard at work all the time, the pie is bound to be larger with each person you add to the pie making work force.

    Next, if you mis-allocate the work force inefficiently, then they will make a smaller pie even though they are all working all the time. So the better the management of the work force the larger the pie becomes.


    First we need to get everyone humanly possible working as much, and a hard as they can.

    Second, we need to manage these workers a efficiently as possible, so the quality of management is key here.




    Now our nation at present FLUNKS all of these tests. We have very few of our people working very little and not hard at all, and our management totally stinks to high heaven.

    What do we do? First we understand the above. Second we develop a game plane to correct all these deficiencies. Third we change management totally at all levels. Fourth we begin to grow the pie again.

    TOP MANAGEMENT in our Country, and in every Country is Government at all levels. And our Government at all levels totally stinks and should be replaced from top to bottom.

    We need to elect Government that understand the pie analogy above, AND will take the hard steps to repair it.

    What specific does this new Government need to do? First, it needs to abolish every law and regulation that is suspected of shrinking our pie. What would some of those be?


    Rescind the Federal Minimum wage, Equal pay laws, Child Labor Laws, Income Tax laws, Social Security Laws, Worker Compensation Laws, Unemployment Laws, and replace them with “sin” taxes and “sin” laws. By “sin” taxes and “sin” laws, we mean taxes and laws designed to inhibit or prohibit activities that shrink the pie or prevent the growth of the pie.

    Examples would be: Gambling in all its forms. Drinking and Drugs in all their forms including certain prescription drugs, using Tobacco products.

    Driving too much is not healthy for anyone, so turn all major roads into Toll Roads.

    ALL Foreign Aid must totally stop in any way, shape or form either by Private entities or Government.

    End all tax breaks for so-called Charitable giving of any sort, and All Mortgage tax breaks, and just about any, and all, tax breaks of any sort, for anyone.

    End all professional and business licensing of every type.

    Close every prison in the nation. People convicted would be put by jury trial into one of two categories. Either they are rehabilitatable (corrected) on an out patient basis, or if they are simply found to be too dangerous to let out on the street then they should be put down like any rabid dog. In any case prisons are a waste of money.

    End all Government at every level DOING anything themselves with their own workers. Now, this does not mean they should not perform an oversight function for the nation, they should, and it should increase as needed.

    Government must be the umpires, and the referees, and the cops on the beat, BUT even those tasks such as meat inspection, and so forth should all be done by private contractors, and those private contractors should be overseen when and where needed, and checked up on, by other contractors and so on to the end that NO Government Employee should DO anything.

    In fact there should be nearly no Government Employees at all. Even the staffs of the President and Congress should be contracted out. All that would remain of Government on a payroll would be Congress, Judges, and the President, and even there we should try to move to make these offices non-salaried.

    We would soon have a red hot economy and vast amounts of money to do some really important things, like explore space, have and raise the children we need, make our people the most healthy the planet has ever seen, save the environment, have a wonderful justice system, and an undefeatable military, and so on.

    Now this detailing is only a bare start, and a talking points beginning on the debate we should have. Left off are hundreds if not thousands of items. And any of you readers can add much to this plan.

    But it is a start on a start, and a beginning of a beginning of beginning to work our way out of the horrifying trap we have put ourselves in over the last 100 years, individually, nationally, and internationally.

    And by the way, we can then afford to have and raise the children we need for us to survive.

  • kathy k

    And all Obama can say in every speech is we have to get the middle class working. LOL. Isn’t that a joke. Just tell them what they want to hear & everything will be just fine. gag me

    • If you watch him and listen to him closely (like you have) it becomes obvious that he knows most Americans don’t have a clue as to how bad things are or that he is very much responsible for their troubles. So he gives very convincing speeches blaming his failed policies on everyone else and the adoring public continues to think, “What a nice, smart, well spoken leader we have. Why won’t people just give him a chance?” Then it’s back to “Two Broke Girls” and “Modern Family.” for the duped voters.

  • lucille

    I don’t care, i’m moving. This place is effed up in all ways, too many to fix. It’s way too late and I was born at the wrong time.

    • cpgone

      you either wont move or move and find out a local can do the job faster , better and cheaper than you. Seen it a thousand times

  • If the 2% increase in the payroll tax can be attributed to such a large drop in sales consider this. What will be the effect of so many employees’ hours being cut to part time to avoid employers paying for (Obamacare) health insurance? What will be the effect of all the lost jobs because small businesses want to stay under the minimum number of workers that triggers mandatory (Obamacare) health coverage for employees? What will happen if sequester causes small contractors to go belly up due to losing the bulk of their business that comes from government contracts? And, like it or not, the loss of federal employment will have a widespread effect on the economy too.

  • FounderChurch Church

    Read my posts for real solutions, not more incessant whining that gets us nowhere.

  • meteorite

    Don’t worry, a meteorite will hit us ending our sufferings…

  • Heather

    Not only all of that, but the market is saturated. Even WalMart posted losses. The world’s people have now produced far more stuff than we need and keep on producing at breakneck speed. The system is collapsing by its own massive weight and its eating up all of the planet’s resources. How to reverse the trend, i.e., make money by reduced production, is the big question. If this dilemma is not addressed, pretty soon retailers will drown in their inventory.

  • Undecider

    Many of these stores could make a roaring come back if they once again sold what they used to promote. That would be guns and ammo. They all know this though. Yes, they do sell the items but it’s not like it used to be. As well, they are holding up their end of their Illuminist membership by restricting the sales of said items.

    Never mind these dinosaurs. They are sellouts anyways.

  • ian

    I think it’s awesome. Too many ugly box chains in this country. This is the beginning of the reduction of these blights on our landscape. Thank god they are all failing.

    • jaded

      yes, america is one big shopping mall. mini malls, mini mart, the (once) beautiful country has been trashed by them.

  • WashingtomusPrime

    I live in Wyoming and have seen the reservation many times. It is the ultimate tragedy of the commons. The tribes own all the land, but no one in particular does, so it gets trashed. The citizens of the reservation get some distribution of revenues, public housing, and federal healthcare. There are no jobs on the reservation, but there is a strong cultural pull to not leave. The school dropout rate is
    astronomical which leads to hundreds of youths with nothing to do but drugs.

    The Wind River Reservation is some of the most beautiful land in the country, but under direction of the federal government it has become a “rural Detroit” basically. Its depressing to go there, the border is very obvious, you start seeing lots of trash and houses with broken windows.The few residents that really try to improve things have very little support, and often ascribe to the idea that if the FEDs only gave them more money, things would be better.

    • MichaelfromTheEconomicCollapse

      Thanks for that comment – I like when people add a first person perspective to some of the thing I bring up in the articles.


  • BellsNwhistles

    Capitalism eats it’s own!

  • How are all you liberals likeing your ‘Change’?

    • DiscouragedOne

      I didn’t vote for Obama, but I have noticed the job market (which seemed to be gaining a bit of steam here) had gone back to molasses-pace since he was re-elected.

  • piccadillybabe

    I think I heard from a well-known financial analyst from the UK, that the malls and shopping centers will eventually (soon) turn into refugee camps for the homeless in this country. He hosts a radio show called the Wakeup Call and he shares a lot of Michael’s sentiments about the dire nature of our economy and the future here in the US. Mr. Paperback shut its doors recently at a mall in my area and it had been there since the 1960s I believe and was family owned. Was a great place to look at magazines and get a nice book on sale not to mention gift items. People just don’t buy books or magazines anymore (not to mention CDs) unless it’s an e-book. Have gotten rid of most of my books except for a few. The winds of change are upon us in a restless fury. All we can do is stand back, brace ourselves and try to survive the onslaught of it all.

    • DiscouragedOne

      Things are hopping in the area I live in, you don’t really see the empty storefronts or closed malls, but the area I moved here from (10 minutes away) was full of them. Depending on which direction I want to drive, I can see prosperity or I can see misery.

  • Lauren Hughes

    These stores and businesses you mention, have been going under for years. There prices are too high, and they have junk to sell anyway. It will help the economy in the long run to shut them down, they can restructure and clean up their books. This is really good economic news, not bad. You just don’t understand business and economics.

  • Massapequan

    Retailers 40 – 50 years ago did not have their stores located a few miles apart from each other must were miles and miles apart. I grew up in a very poor neighborhood and their was no major retailer close by not even a major supermarket chain, just a local grocery store that over charged. Over the years retailers grew much too quickly and even the poorest of neighborhoods had multiple big box stores springing up. The closing of the stores are also a result of incredibly poor planning and trying to be politically correct in where they placed their brands.

    • DiscouragedOne

      I have 5 grocery stores and a Whole Foods within 10 minutes of me, they all stay in business because there is the population in this and other towns around here (that come here to shop) to keep them open. That said, some come here from a town where 2 grocery stores closed, also a big lots and a k-mart. I think the population of that area decreased a little bit then poof they were gone.

  • Steve

    Your kidding right?

    “If Congress does not do anything about the “sequester”, millions of
    federal workers may shortly be facing some very painful furloughs

    THAT may be the best thing to happen since bread, peanut butter, and Jelly came together.

    I hope you realize most Federal Workers are Unionized and it is about time they “feel the pain” of the taxpayers in the private sector.

    Frankly “The Sequester” may prove to be the catalyst necessary to obtain serious talk about the deficit and wake up the American Public. But then again 52% voted for Obama and thereby blessed bigger government. How’s that working for you 52 percenters???

    • Orange Jean

      Personally, I don’t know a single Federal employee who is unionized and I’ve been one for almost 8 yrs. Where do you get the information that “most” are unionized? Also, do you know that Federal employees are also taxpayers (with a short-term exception of military serving in combat zones). We get taxed for my income at both the state and federal level at the exact same rates as anyone in the private sector .

      I would love to see the sequester being the catalyst for serious talk about the deficit, but I doubt that will happen… and it’s not the rank and file Federal employees who are lax in making these serious decisions – it’s Congress.

      Oh, and BTW… I did not vote for Obama.

      • DiscouragedOne

        Last I knew (not that I am any authority on the subject), it was 28% Federal employees in unions, vs. less than 7% private sector.

  • Thomas Jefferson

    Atlas is shrugging.

  • maby123

    very real, I will soon send u a photo of star buck coffee on miami lakes very centric place and close recently ,I going to purchase a coffee and they went out of the market.

  • AS55423

    I have friends that work at Best Buy corp they don’t see it collapsing around them.When i bring any of this up all they can say is well where else are people going to buy electronics ? They are so out of touch with reality.

  • One word:

  • Clyde Ankle

    What about the proposed merger between Office Max and Office Depot? I wonder how many new stores will open and how many new jobs will be created.

    • DiscouragedOne

      Mergers normally result in less stores and less jobs.

  • mr_bellows


    it is well established that walmart sells ‘junk from china’ and that these big stores do not have american workers, economy and US manufacturing as their priorities.


    • DiscouragedOne

      Buy local WHAT? Do you know how hard it is to find things to buy in the USA at all much less locally? Food, yes, for some things it is easy, but take things like clothes….I WISH they still made them in the USA because they were much better quality back then, but I can’t find the kind of clothes I wear to work locally or even online made in the USA. Basically I like classic office-wear type of clothing, if you know of any let me know. Made in the USA sites I have seen did not have what I wear. Even the stores don’t have a lot of good clothes anymore, everything is getting cheap and shoddy.

      • Orange Jean

        I agree with you totally on that… including almost all “brand name” clothing and clothing bought in fancy stores. You’re more likely to have success souring vintage and resale stores.

        Unfortunately it’s also almost impossible to sew your own with fabric from the US.

        I know how to sew (including classical office wear) but the quality of fabric in most places is absolute crap now… mostly plastic stuff made in China. Almost the only fabric I’ve seen in recent years made in the US is cotton (some very expensive organic cotton knits are available) but not suited to making business wear. I used to love the types of fine woolens we could get (cheap because I’d buy “end pieces” left over from manufacturers).

        That’s not entirely true when it comes to yarn (US grown and spun yarn has become sort of a specialty market, but tends to be very expensive)… and it would sure look pretty weird in most cases to try knitting business wear (with exception of some women’s items – a suit like that would probably take me over a year to make, as I’m not as good at knitting as I am at sewing).

  • James

    Wouldn’t part of the reason that all these retailers are closing is the fact that online shopping is taking over? I am in no way saying that we have a robust recovery just that the online shopping is a contributing factor.

    • biggestbird

      That is true that it may be a contributing factor, but that’s like blaming email for the entire postal system nearing collapse!

  • brian

    sequster was enacted in 1985 however it was not to actually take effect if enacted but a barging tool to use if nobody could reach an agreement as for the jobs if americans were not lazzy and demanding high end pay for little work they want to do and the quality of work then maybe something would work out anyway we can be on that subject for another hunder years since americans about beating a dead horse and everyone either has a blame game to sell or tell sick of it anyway over expansion of the retail market and proximity of the stores of themselves has caused the collaspe of the retail industry an example is walmart wanted to put up 4 stores in one area this is why they are going under the consumer will be confused as to which walmart to go too
    over extended politicts and greed I think even in los angeles there should be one not more then one target store in a 80 mile radius of one another also onlne shopping is way better then going to the store itself poor coustomer service is for one thing another the employees tend not to be knowledge base on prouduct and two 99 precent the item is not in stock and with gas price leaning in the and towards 5 per gallon nobody is going to drive 10-20 miles just to go to a walmart or a target and another problem is compaines tend to hedge big when most are way off the prospective numbers they are expect to make

    • DiscouragedOne

      I think whatever the area will support as far as stores go is good. There is a Target less than 10 minutes away from me, and there is another Target about 20 minutes away. Where I used to live, I went to the 20 minutes away Target which was less than 10 from where I lived. Where I live now, I go to the other Target which is less than 10 minutes away (if I want to go to that store which is actually rare). My point is, in my area there are enough people to support both stores and they go to the one more convenient for them. IF there is the population to support it and the demand, I can see it, otherwise it is foolish. I do agree there were too many malls, that is why so many have closed down since the economy slowed down. In my area, it was the malls in more run-down areas that closed down, and from what I can see it did increase the traffic to the other malls (I try to avoid them but when I do go I see more people than before the other malls closed down, there were 2 in this area that closed in the past 10 years).

  • Mondobeyondo

    I still miss my neighborhood K-Mart. It shut down on December 18th, 2011. They couldn’t even make it to Christmas.

    I’d often walk a mile up the road, and just browse around and window shop for an hour or so, and then walk the mile back home. These days, the building is surrounded by chain link fence. Don’t know what will become of it. Maybe another Home Depot?

    Sad, very sad.


    • Jason Johnson

      who cares…. yawn…

    • DiscouragedOne

      I don’t want to believe that, but when they only do things that hurt us instead of help us, I think either they are sadists or they are doing it on purpose.

  • Ohio Mark

    The people that shop at all of those stores mentioned are Middle Class. The Middle Class has been gutted!
    My nephew manages a Goodwill store (used goods refurbished by handicap workers). They are having some of their best sales quarters ever. BTW, Goodwill did a study and found that while a large percentage of their clientel are lower-income, a shocking 15% of their regular customers have a net worth greater than 1 million. = Smart Shoppers
    We avoid the mall stores frequenting instead some of the many re-sale shops featuring used designer clothes at 1/4 or less the original price. Many of the “used” items we buy still have the original price tags in them from the mall stores. These shops are booming!
    The Middle Class is tapped out.

    • DiscouragedOne

      The only time I could find nice clothes at thrift shops was when I used to be a size 3 (I think they call that a size 0 these days, lol), and boy did I get some great deals. Now that I am a size 10, forget about it, unless you are there when they put the stuff on the rack, it is gone…immediately. I have given a lot of nice clothes to places like Salvation Army and Purple Heart myself.

  • TRUTH is: The last four years there has been NO growth and we are in a pre-depression. Our GDP is 16.5 trillion and Obama has been printig n borrowing n putting in an extra trillion every year. ITs The Big Lie… So people dont panic. And when the money stops flowing there will be the worse economy every seen. Why do you think they want guns so bad…

    • DiscouragedOne

      I think you are right, we never made up for those 10 million plus jobs lost did we? I don’t see how they act like the economy is doing good if we barely keep up with growth, that is not doing anything to address the original job loss, it has to be over 148 K, and anything above that starts addressing those lost jobs. How many months has THAT happened in the last 5 years? I can think of maybe 3.

  • ShootyMcBang

    Their gross profits have been borne of the fruits of slave labor. It is inevitable that they will fail. Simply because it is wrong.

  • tacoma

    All those retail stores closing. This is very good news. Finally, US is retrenching from a 70% unfettered consumer society, hopefully transform into a more balanced and sustainable mix.

    After decades of spending trillions of dollars issued from thin air, alas, there is a limit to getting something from nothing.

    And so, the American society must consider doing actual real useful work in order to create real wealth. I know, this must have a novel concept but it’s never too late to get real.

    And BTW, spending hours on Twitter and Facebook does not create useful work, for you. But all your wasted time and energy is very profitable to Twitter & Facebook.

    • DiscouragedOne

      I think that is an unfair statement. We did not make this a services economy, but we are stuck with the jobs it provides. My work is at a computer (and I am lucky to have some skills I can use to get a good job) but it is just as “real” as digging a ditch.

  • Anti-Whites said in 1965, they were not trying to change the demographics of America and that demographics would not change. Anti-whites said and forced the same things in every other white country. No vote or discussion was allowed on this issue and Integration was FORCED. Now anti-Whites in America and every other white country are celebrating the coming White Minorities EVERYWHERE, which clearly makes it GENOCIDE. “Anti-racist” is a codeword for anti-white.

    • DiscouragedOne

      I don’t think I agree with you, nobody forced white people to have less babies, we did it willingly, and that is why we will be the minority.

      • In the 60’s anti-whites forced ALL and ONLY white countries to open their borders to non-white immigrants. Then anti-whites forced ALL and ONLY white people to “integrate” or face consequences for being “naziswhowantokill6millionjews.” Now anti-whites are counting down the days until ALL and ONLY white children become minorities and eventually extinct EVERYWHERE. It’s Genocide. “Anti-racist” is a codeword for anti-white.

  • Tony Cain

    A county school system in Georgia announced yesterday or this morning that it will fire about 124 employees to close a $10 million “shortfall.” The millage rate that could be raised would not cover the shortfall and it would take 50 furloughs days a year for all school employees to close the $10 million gap, so adios, employees.

    Should the school system maybe close football stadiums, performing arts centers, basketball courts, tracks, swimming pools, baseball fields, volley ball courts, etc. and lower salary and pensions?

    • DiscouragedOne

      I think it is better to keep the athletics, not sure on the performing arts center.

      • why? so we can still support and drone out on the tillions a year football industry?

        • DiscouragedOne

          How about the Olympics?

    • cpgone

      “Should the school system maybe close football stadiums, performing arts
      centers, basketball courts, tracks, swimming pools, baseball fields,
      volley ball courts, etc. and lower salary and pensions?”
      Bid out all work left. run it as a business.
      Link to the school announcement?

      • DiscouragedOne

        Whatever will benefit the children most should be kept. If those employees are really helping those children (in a way that can be proven by the facts) fine, but otherwise, they are better off with the athletics.

  • cpgone

    “If the economy is improving, then why are many of the largest retail chains in America closing hundreds of stores?”

    b/c all the crap is sold on-line.
    Nest story

  • humptydumpty

    Until this current president and his minions are gone, nothing will change. The dems have created a Country where they promise the poor a better life and not having to do anything to get it while placing it on the backs of working Americans!

    I would have said middle class America, but as with these companies that are scaling down or are going out of business. Middle class America is becoming a non-existant entity.
    Personally I believe the biggest change in this Country will only happen if we as a whole humble ourselves and ask God to come back into our lives. Unfortunately I don’t see this happening after witnessing the fiasco at the DNC where they wanted God and Israel out of their convention. But, there is always hope……..

  • THATS FUNNY,because the LORD says were about to see the worse famine the worlds ever seen,people will be killing each other for food,gangs will raid homes and not even the military can put a lid on it,as a matter of fact,they get really stupid with the people and the people turn on them and kill them all,now there is a sunny side to all this,all the military and rich elite hiding in the underground bunkers are killed and never escape… stealing all that stuff,don’t do them a bit of good,all for nothing………………………………..

  • Imaplaneiac

    I spoke with a manager at the primary Barnes & Nobles ( B&N ) that I shop / buy at. He assured me that the closure of around 1/3 of their stores over the reported 10 year period was NORMAL for this company; a normal reaction to close underperforming stores.
    Barnes and Noble has been in business for 140 years!


    How about these companies are no longer relevant, Just like Blockbuster Video, Schwinn Bicycles, Pontiac, RCA and more….

  • In northern CA, where I used to live, there are business parks that are 3/4 empty, especially in the Sacramento area. I now live in Minnesota, and it’s a bit better here, but still no signs of recovery. There are also a lot of apartments with “For Rent” signs.

  • 2Gary2

    Tax the rich hard and spread the wealth–people will have money to spend, creating jobs and all will be better.

  • 2Gary2

    most of the stores you say are closing have terrible customer service. Let them close.

  • Well, let’s see. Since 2005, been laid off 5 times, stagnant wages since 1980’s, been laid off again for over a year, unemployment has run out, prices keep rising on almost everything. No money, no can buy. At least that’s my reason for not shopping. Even poor man’s food is becoming over priced and unaffordable. I don’t blame the politicians, I blame corporate America. They have the power to turn this economy around. They just don’t want to. Just like back in the Great Depression.

  • if the Indian reservations are so bad, why don’t they leave? move where there are jobs.

  • rarnedsoum

    This is a dumb article, trying to make something look like its not.

    The reason is online commerce is a paradigm shift.
    Ever hear of Cyber Monday? Its not just about Black Friday anymore.
    Showrooming? Yes. Its real.

    Why not include in your list Tower Records, Borders, Circuit City, CompUSA, Gateway stores? Huh? Get real.

  • Netquest

    Inefficient store chains have always closed stores happens every year. But in their place others are opening here is 15 retail chains and the number of openings in 2012: 2012 U.S. Store Openings – Complete List:

    630 7-Eleven (U.S. and Canada)

    500 Family Dollar

    280 Dunkin Donuts

    198 Walgreens

    175 McDonald’s

    170 O’Reilly Auto Parts *

    145 Ascena Retail (dressbarn, marices, Justice)

    140 Advance Auto Parts *

    135 Wal-Mart Supercenter

    125 Charming Shoppes (through 2017)

    100 Wal-Mart

    85 Fossil *

    80 Big Lots

    75 Foundry Big & Tall Supply Company (JC Penney) *

    75 Francesca’s Collections *

  • David Oliver

    You failed to mention K-Mart

  • Colin

    A negative effect of this retail apocalypse is that mergers are increasing. There is talk of Office Max and Office Depot merging this week. Earlier, another troubled company, American Airlines, merged with Delta Airlines. These mergers result in a loss of jobs and customer choices.

  • BalloonSword

    Pretty simple, it’s the excesses enjoyed during the housing bubble. It was easy keep these retailers afloat when folks had money during the first leg of their mortgage they couldn’t afford. Interest rates go up, gas prices go up, food goes up, and folks are broke. By the way, your dollar is worth less today. Being diluted by the money tree in Shanghai we continue to shake.

  • This was a major symptom in the soviet union that a terminal collapse was just months away. Interesting!

  • iamtenglish

    The “useful idiots” are getting what they voted for. The destruction of the formerly greatest country in the world. They will never even be smart enough to know what they caused. They only hope we have is that the rest of the voters stand up and make themselves heard instead of running like sheep to the slaughter. Its very sad.

  • Patriot Alice

    Is Detroit the only city people can refer to as proof of the decline of our country? Boring!

  • NorthernCanuck

    Does anythone think that this isn’t all intentional? It’s happening in both the US and the UK – jobs are fleeing, national culture is degenerating into tribalism, crime is increasing, the dependency lifestyle is becoming the norm for millions, national identity to disappearing under a massive flood of immigrants, and the old bulwarks of freedom have been well and truly splintered…it’s not going to get better!

    • NorthernCanuck

      Next January, the UK has to open its borders and job market to millions of Romanians and Bulgarians under its European Union obligations. Since the minimum wage, child benefits, housing benefits etc. would represent an 8 to 9-fold increase in the standard of living for individuals arriving from these countries, there is widespread fear in the UK (already overcrowded and short on jobs, with its own huge indigenous ‘entitlements’-claiming population) that literally millions will come. The UK government appears to be doing nothing to try to forestall this and the pressures on the job market, housing market, social security system, schools, etc. – not to mention expected escalations in criminal activity – will be massively increased. After Poles gained that privilege, over one million moved to Britain (where, in all fairness, they in particular have generally proven to be productive and hardworking). Does this parallel what’s currently happening with US ‘open borders’, or what? Is all of this, in both countries, just coincidental – or is it purposeful?

  • Miss Debra

    You are an excellent writer. I find your observations and data fascinating. I am checking out your other articles. Thank you very much!

  • AZDesertRat

    Some of the jobs are coming back. I know in the aerospace R&O world a lot of companies like GE, Honeywell, Pratt & Whitney, etc., opened facilities in Mexico and Asia in the past 10-15 years. The quality control and lack of productivity has been so bad that they are brining everything they can back into the States.
    This isn’t going to save the economy by any means but it does show that the US worker and US companies can be competitive in some manufacturing markets.

  • Robert (qslv)

    The people engineering the downfall of the U.S. don’t care. They have an exit strategy when The U.S. becomes a Mad Max movie set. Who are they? Go to the CFR website and have a look around. They’re not even trying to hide anymore. They don’t have to. It’s ENDGAME. See CFR-Corporate-Brochure-2013. It’s a slick little PDF brochure available on their website free to anyone. CFR org content publications. Be VERY afraid.

  • Mike

    This is a much
    deeper problem! The top 10% of income earners don’t have any issues (making
    more than 200,000 a year… It’s the people making between 60K- 200K a year are
    really feeling the brunt of all this. The State of the country is to not do
    anything and collect welfare or government funded programs. First there needs
    to be huge amounts of government reform. Let’s stop paying people to have
    babies. Let’s make mandatory on sit drug screening for welfare collection. Let’s
    place people who can’t find jobs into (governmental work force) Doing public
    service work (Maintaining parks and other government grounds). Reducing other
    government run industries will save millions a year. The US postal service is
    outdated and mainly used only for Commercial mail. (Let tier that) .55 Cents
    for every letter for a small business (10,000) per year and .95 cents for (50,000)
    per year and 2.00 (100,000) per year. How about limiting the mail to only be delivered
    Monday, Wed, and Friday. This saves wages maintenance and fuel for millions of
    postal locations around the US. We need
    to encourage our major cities to develop better mass transit. Back in the early
    60’s most major cities had options for mass transit. The Oil companies and Auto
    industry bought up these transit options and one by one closed them. The US
    needs to follow in the footsteps of Europe’s Mass Transit Models. This would
    start to put hundreds back to work. America also needs to get back to the Made in
    America Model. Trade agreements don’t need to exist. In Fact it should cost 3
    times more to bring something made outside the US in than it does to make it here.
    We need to put a law on the books that a corporate Ceo, boards; directors and
    managers cannot receive more than a 15% raise without 85% of the company also seeing a more than 10%
    raise. (Profit sharing model) Also the income of said CEO and board members
    should be public knowledge. Corporate Greed is a thing of the past. Once the American
    people are earning their worth in income people are more dedicated to their company
    and have money to spend driving spending with intern drives demand which drives
    corporate growth. Adding Jobs and
    putting America back to work. And surprise with corporate growth and more Americans
    seeing a steady pay check means more taxable income which means less national Debit.
    This still means responsible national spending. And Congress needs a review of
    their income (A Income Limit should be set in place of (Max of 250K per year)

    If they surpass
    that a sever TAX is incurred, keeping them working for the common good of the American
    people not their own Pocket Book. These are the things that would help to fix America!

  • What Do i Know?

    North America is no longer a manufacturing region. We basically only sell other countries manufactured items and support the sale through store operations, transportation and distribution logistics. A country cannot run on this type of economic sustainability. Why aren’t people spending money? Because they don’t the tangible money in their wallets or stashed in their piggy banks any more! The majority of people only have plastic credit cards that accumulate debt every month. For the post war babies that are in retirement age now, they only have small pensions to live on, and to pay monthly utility costs that have escalated beyond what they use to pay for when they were in the working force, now represents a huge part of their monthly expenses. Case in point, house prices, taxes (income and home), gas prices, car maintenance costs, phone TV and computer connection fees, vacation costs, food cost, general store items, the list goes on and on, have all substantially increased based on the increase salaries of the rich working class and not the middle and poor class wages. The children of the rich and poor have been raised in an environment that everything was provided for them by the parents and society as a whole. There was no sense of having to live without this or that on the part of the kids. Growing up in the 50’s 60’s and 70’s took more sacrifice in living without because we didn’t have the tangible money and “we just can’t afford it now” mentality prevailed. Now these children have grown up and continue to hold on to the support of their parents. It’s not their fault they have to live like this. It was basically brought on by society’s greed for money and incredible inflation of all items that are purchased in order to live in this day and age. I believe this is a huge problem of society, and no one in the political theatre has the right answers. They can only offer optimistic speeches, or words without meaning or constructive solutions. Affordability is no longer there. It’s time we got back to the 5 cent cup of coffee and the 10 cent donut and the 6 cent per litre gasoline that is charged in the oil rich countries of this world. But as the world’s population increases, all increased prices for all items is based on only one principle of pricing, and that is… Supply and Demand.

    • peaceangel

      There is a name for the purposeful economic collapse of America and it’s dollar which is coming any minute now. It is called Operation Thunderdome and there is a whistleblower with an all access position with Homeland Security (who now run everything) who is leaking this information in interviews to the Canada Free Press for several months.

      So before it is jerked down or he is murdered check it out. None of the ppl in charge are looking for answers trying to fix it or will fix it. They are all working and legislating to crash the world economy in order to create a new world order (Agenda 21) and to redistribute the moneys of the working and middle class Americans and all the rest of the world. You have it right but need to know that it will not end and there will not be a solution. The DHS snitch says the plan is to do it very soon like by Spring or Summer this year and to create mass chaos and send us all to the concentration camps.

  • tray2000

    the trans-pacific partnership will be the club the finally beats the remainder of life out or the economy, like a baby seal on the ice in the antarctic, being clubbed by a fur trader

  • Mike from Toronto

    Mike from Toronto Kanada:
    …these stores mentioned above are closing because of changing demographics…less and less white middle people are available to shop and buy and the population is ageing and not reproducing! In Canada, the situation is even worse!

  • ddo2013

    answer: because they refuse to honor God in any way

  • eric

    Thats all folks why would anyone who reads history books of ancient civilizations arrogantly assume history stops with the United States?

  • Herbie

    Lol I like how the trolls, or the mindless always blame unions for this mess instead of greed, The bottom line companies took 30 years ago of maximum profit is what put us where we are plain and simple, and lets not forget take the money and offshore it as well.

    But keep watching your hours cut and your pay as well and keep blaming those almost non existent unions for it.

    A ship of fools is destined to sink for sure.

  • Big M

    “So how can the mainstream media be talking about how ‘good’ things are if we still have 6.4 million fewer jobs than we had back in November 2007?”

    Simple. The “mainstream media” are completely controlled by Jews, and THEY LIE.

    And I don’t know what to say about anybody stupid enough to pay attention to, much less believe, anything that comes out of the piehole of that corporate sleazebag Osama BlackBush, or any of the slimy crapweasels in CONgress. Or who vote.

  • Bobby
  • Hellfire1968

    As all industries become more automated, there will be less demand for workers while our population continues to grow. Very Interesting times ahead for all of us.

  • SalMoanella

    I had a channel rep gig for a major appliance manufacturer last year. I covered Home Depot, Sears and Best Buy as well as a regional player.

    Sears is dead. It’s the gulag of retail. The people I supported in Sears were all commission based. No salary what so ever. They were a miserable lot and rightfully so. On the whole they were nice people. But miserable none the less.

    Best Buy still has time to turn things around. But they won’t. They have a layer of management that is truly clueless and that in my opinion is their Achilles heel. You have a bunch of late twenties to early thirties, full of themselves, individuals running stores into the ground. Very little business sense and scarce sales savvy.

    Home Depot, on the other hand, was doing quite well. From a human resource perspective, they benefited enormously from the economic implosion. I was working with ex Wall Street guys, chemical engineers as well as many other over qualified people. They actually had heads on their shoulders and knew the importance of customer service, sales savvy and how a business is run.

    Many, not all, took pride in the work they performed regardless of qualification. The sales I tracked among the four retailers reflected this. They usually led the pack. I’m not saying Home Depot is great by any means but of the retailers I covered, they had the upper hand and their stock price reflected it.

  • j h

    From October 2008 until November 2012 I was without a full time job. I worked a lot of part time jobs and sent out a lot of applications.

    I wonder everyday if I was doing enough to find full time employment. There were a lot of days when I just felt like giving up on my full time job search because you seldom heard back from any company. When you would follow up with a company the company never responded back to you.
    As far as I’m concerned this economy is never coming back which is sad because there are a lot of American’s who just want to provide for there families.

  • motorsportsnz

    its as Mathew chapter 24 verses 37 to 40 says it will be as in the days of Noah but no one wanted to knowa.
    Until the sky falls chicken licken unbelievers, that Jesus our blessed messiah the Son of Yahweh our heavenly Father says He will come in the clouds in all Majesty and Glory halleluljah then this world is going to the dogs.
    Repent and seek Him whilst you still have time.
    For Jesus has sadi so often but you do not hear ,…
    I AM the way the truth and the Life and none top the Father in heaven but by me.
    wacky do folks if you think your pressy is gunna save you forget it hes on a sinking titanic

  • Refrax

    Sounds like it’s time to abandon ship- I hate to say it, but employment outside of the USA looks easier to come by when all our jobs are being outsourced…..

  • olde reb

    M. Chossudovsky tells the answer in GLOBALISATION OF POVERTY. The IMF and World Bank is turning the world into nations of peasants and elites. Peasants do not have money to buy things. It is the middle class that does the buying of widgets. The middle class in the U.S. is being destroyed by exporting jobs. There is no prosperity without a middle class.

  • DreamAdmin

    Very Interesting

  • A one thing missed in this article that needs to be said, true wealth can come from only 3 places:
    1. Digminedrill for it
    2. Grow it (agriculture)

    3. Build it

    All three of these sources of wealth have been under attack or sent over seas. You can only move money around for so long until it eventually gets stuck at the top or leaves the country.

  • John Horvat II

    What we are seeing is a lack of restraint in economy. It’s frenzied and out of control. We need to go back
    to the fundamentals of family, community, and Faith that normally serve to keep economy in balance.
    There is what I call a “frenetic intemperance” in modern economy. It is that lack of control that has turned our economy into a credit-card economy where we must have everything, instantly. Regardless of the consequences.
    What we have lost is the human element in economy.
    We need to get away from a system where money rules and go to what I call a rule of honor. What we need is a RETURN TO ORDER.

  • What is it about the President taking a golf outing when Congress is not in-session that ticks Republicans off so much?

    • cyclic



  • John Freedom

    You’re right but the cause is hidden – the lack of an asset based economy – those trade agreements are the only thing holding up our economy – when gold went away we went with trade agreements in oil – saudi oil for american guns protecting them from israel. Dollars for oil – the petrodollar – and trade agreements allowed us to keep growing – but imaginary money systems only benefit temporarily and the time is ending soon – we’ll probably see a revaluation of the dollar to gold at $5000/1 oz or a collapse of the us currency entirely as the endgame of all this mess.

  • Trey

    Society as we know it all throughout the world is on the verge of collapse. It’s simple economics. The global economy is built around the idea of consuming natural resources, many of which are nonrenewable. Our planet cannot sustain a population of 7 billion+ in a healthy fashion. Collapse is coming people. Wake up people.

  • susan

    You fail to mention that many people shop online now. Ecommerse has been replacing our brick and mortar stores. People can buy products cheaper online and have the goods shipped right to their door without wasting time and gas to run to a physical store. This does have an impact on physical stores, but I’ll bet Amazon and ebay are doing quite well.

  • IN a consumer-driven economy, this is inevitable as the middle class shrinks and wages stay stagnant. The great masses simply don’t have enough money to spend on consumer products to keep these stores open. Also, the retail experience has noticeably deteriorated over the years. The staff is trained to be more aggressive and to push upselling harder than ever before. As a result, I now buy whatever I possibly can on the internet and simply avoid the unpleasant experience of retail.

  • Hereticus Maximus

    Who buys anything at overpriced retail stores anymore? I buy most stuff online these days at a steep discount.. Cut out the middle men.. Online retailing is where its at.. if you are pointing to the demise of brick & mortar stores as a sign toward anything other than it’s obsolescence you are sadly mistaken.


    MSM does whatever their messiah Obama tells them too. What is the real unemployment numbers? How many are now under Democrat leadership are underemployed? Globalists whether RINOs or Demonrats are doing this. Tea Party/libertarians have the only solutions.

  • John Jonsson

    Consumers stopped spending until the government stops spraying noxious aerosol chemtrails in the sky poisoning wildlife, plants and mammals.

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