WHAT THE HELL

Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

More news from the shark tank

Joe Nocera of The Times has an interesting take on the evilness of Amazon in today’s paper. Refreshingly, he’s a Hachette author who admits that he’s not about to stop using Amazon. And neither will most consumers.

Riffing off a piece in The New Republic, Nocera successfully belittles the concerns of TNR editor, Franklin Foer, who writes, “Without the constraints of brick and mortar, it considers nothing too remote from its core business, so it has grown to sell server space to the C.I.A., produce original television shows about bumbling congressmen, and engineer its own line of mobile phones.”

Answers Nocera: “What, precisely, is darker about making TV shows about bumbling congressmen is left unsaid.”

Read the column for a sober view of the controversy, which concludes, obviously, that Amazon is not a monopoly and is not much different from Wal-Mart or any other mega-retailer (of which this country has more than its fair share).

I’ll just add that I’m much more concerned with the size and culture of our banking corporations, which can do a lot more damage than Amazon can with low ebook prices.

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10 comments on “More news from the shark tank

  1. sknicholls
    October 14, 2014

    Love that last line…so true.

  2. John W. Howell
    October 14, 2014

    Susan stole my comment.

  3. 1WriteWay
    October 14, 2014

    I still think Amazon is evil ….

    • Kevin Brennan
      October 15, 2014

      I’m starting to think that “evil” is a feature, not a bug, in corporate character these days…

  4. kingmidget
    October 14, 2014

    You’re right about the banks. Interesting article today or yesterday about how the first priority if the banks fail and have to file for bankruptcy is to pay off their derivative products. Yes, that’s right, the very products that created the last mess and will create the next ones are the first priority payment in bankruptcy, leaving the rest of us — individuals, governments, small business, etc. — high and dry. It’s disgusting.

    But I’m with 1WriteWay … I still there’s a bit of evil in Amazon. They’ve become too big. Just like WalMart.

    • Kevin Brennan
      October 15, 2014

      Yeah, it’s the old “private profits, socialized risks” syndrome.

      It seems like the ultimate corporate success these days is to become so big that you become a factor in government policy. It’s gettin’ a little bit scary!

      • kingmidget
        October 15, 2014

        The thing about socialized risks though is that shouldn’t it be the society’s decision to accept those risks. I’m pretty certain that the hoards of unwashed masses in America today would prefer a return to the days when banks were banks and investment houses were separate entities. The risks that the financial conglomerates take on is a risk that we uninformed, uneducated fools would rather our banks wouldn’t take.

      • Kevin Brennan
        October 17, 2014

        You got that right! Ah, for the good ol’ days during the Depression… (Why couldn’t we leave well enough alone?)

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This entry was posted on October 14, 2014 by in Publishing and tagged , , .
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