Selfish idiots are totally going to break corporate supply chains

I was writing earlier about what is called the tragedy of the commons in economics and philosophy. In these situations, everything would run smoothly if every person only took what they absolutely needed to get by. But dysfunction in the whole system occurs when people selfishly and irrationally begin to hoard. The few will break the system for the many.

My husband went to the grocery store this morning, and at opening time, there was a line down the block to get in. The store is full mostly of seniors in our area, who are cleaning it out every day. This has become like a sport to them, and they have an entire retirement savings to do it with. Publix has appropriately started rationing products so these individuals do not buy them out. Now they are buying items that the store did not think to ration, because they can.

They had stocked dish soap on the cleaning aisle, and one woman was buying 10 bottles of it at once. A passerby asked her why she was buying that much, as you are obviously not able to clean surfaces with it. She replied that she thought she could trade it for things she did need.

This situation is really bringing out the worst in people and it’s making me downright despise some of the people in our community. I’m used to watching people buy out stores for hurricanes and the immediate hoarding that involves, but these people are nuts. I want off this planet.

2 thoughts on “Selfish idiots are totally going to break corporate supply chains

  1. The market would do an effective job of rationing if so called “price gouging” were not shunned by our idiot betters.

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    1. Okay, so normally I would agree with you 100% on this point, but it’s other aspects of getting by that make it a problem. Living in an area that is hurricane prone, where you usually have a significant time to prepare, I think price gouging can have the effect of restoring sanity and market efficiency. I’ve seen people backing up pickup trucks with tanks in the back to buy gasoline for generators during hurricanes, which makes it impossible for the people who have to evacuate to do so.

      In this situation, though, some people are legitimately in need of help and they can’t afford to pay out the nose for essential services to discipline other consumers.

      I’ve been very open here about how my father had an aneurysm several years ago. He now has a stint in his aorta and absolutely cannot enter into a Walmart or grocery store to get food. I am probably going to end up shipping him food in coming weeks. He should be able to order food normally online and for pick-up, but he can’t because all these jerks are hoarding it. Tried ordering it online, but you have the choice of (1) paying massive amounts to third-party sellers, some of which are selling canned goods for $50 a pack, or (2) wait for the local chain to get it together in three weeks.

      I have honestly considered packing up my car with food and driving the 2,000 miles to take it to him, but I have a family and am not sure I can get back home when states enact the inevitable shelter-in-place laws countrywide.

      As I have said before, there is nothing governments do better than creating inefficiencies. And in this case, they are killer inefficiencies.

      Liked by 2 people

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