Today Circuit City, which filed for bankruptcy in November, announced that it will be liquidating all of it’s U.S. stores; well over 500 in number. In doing so, it joins the ranks of a growing number of other “big box” retailers (Goody’s Family Clothing, KB Toys, Mervyns LLC, Linens ‘N Things, etc.,) that have crashed & burned in recent months – no doubt with more on the way – as well as others who have been shutting down dozens and even hundreds of individual locations (Macy’s, Starbucks, etc.,).
Taken into consideration along with the failures of the huge banks and investment houses that we have seen in the past 12 months, it makes me wonder if the days of all of these monolithic type corporations are coming to an end.
Apparently, bigger isn’t always better. Especially when company profits must be constantly bled off to fund investors who make money by adding absolutely no value whatsoever.
As I have downsized my life over the past few years, it has gotten better, easier to manage, and more productive, all of which have increased my own quality of life. Who’s to say that a downsizing of companies won’t do the same thing? The folks who have habitually lived at the top of these corporate pyramids won’t like that, of course, but I’ve never considered it my civic duty to support the lifestyles of the rich & famous.
Wouldn’t it be nice to get back that sense of community that we lost when everything went “big”? Yes, all of those “big” stores offered so much variety and made things so much easier for us, but in embracing those mega-stores & mega-malls, we seem to have lost touch with one another. We traded our relationships for stuff. I would suggest that it wasn’t worth it.
Maybe the trend is now moving back to what it was before; when we had a much larger number of smaller, independent stores that all mixed together to make every community unique in it’s own way.
Maybe that wouldn’t be such a bad thing.