note: free PA https://amzn.to/2rmymBR another https://amzn.to/2jvrDRE and zombies https://amzn.to/2juEsLZ and some nuke war https://amzn.to/2HWk8hv
In a lot of ways, economics don’t mean diddley squat anymore. When your economy has arrived at the point where the US has been for several years, it really is Empire Down, Lights Out, Game Over and All Over But The Singing. I’m sure there is something in there about fiddles playing while the nearby imperial city burns, but I’ll leave it at that. And yet, I still talk about economics. Not as much as I used to, instead focusing on the energy that underpins our economy, but I still enjoy that particular line of reasoning once in awhile.
So I’d like to talk about the death of the video stores-not for the perceived reason everyone yammers on about, just like they are wrong about Amazon killing retail stores-and other circus ( from bread and circus ) matters such as the predominance of Buffet entertainment ( one price all you can read/watch ). No, it has very little to do with survivalism, and at most a sub-niche in economics, but sometimes I like to discuss peripheral subjects just because I find them interesting. A lot of times, just moving out of your wheel house, is when the best insights are gleamed.
Everyone says that Netflix killed the video store. That is only true to a certain extent. It is like saying gasoline costs more because oil is harder to extract, and then completely ignoring Peak Oil and EROI considerations. It is true that more people are opting out for a $9 a month unlimited viewing on Netflix. That is not because Netflix offers all that good of programming. It is more because that is the affordable option that is their only choice. It used to be cheap to go to the video store, and it used to be cheap to have cable TV ( okay, it was never really cheap, but it was at least far more affordable ).
But every year that all other costs go up, medical insurance quadrupling, rent and cars doubling in ten years, means you have to cut costs in other areas, because work hours have been cut back to a large extent. Or the two income household went down to one income. In general, most folks are looking at higher prices and less wages. That is wonderful, to me. I lost out to pig humpers for twenty years, as they were selling high dollar prepping. Now I don’t look so silly. Alas, it pretty much sucks for everyone else. Retail isn’t in trouble because of Amazon, it is in trouble because of declining deposable income. The bankers and all their rectal licking toadies don’t want to take the blame for that one, so Amazon becomes the scapegoat, which pleases Bezos no end for the free publicity.
Video stores weren’t killed by Netflix, they were killed by the ‘08-’09 Big Dip economic contraction. They two were just closely intertwined as Netflix DVD rental was waiting for broadband Internet to catch up to its needs so they could go streaming. Video stores were dwelt a huge blow by Blockbuster, it is true. But the same reason the small mom and pop stores got started, best return per square foot of retail space, would have allowed them to make a comeback rather easily as Blockbuster killed itself with too much debt for expansion and running a business from the ivory tower, completely clueless as to the customers needs ( not the only industry Suits have ruined in this way ). Blockbuster wasn’t even touched by Netflix, it was a suicide.
Actually, video stores were in a far better place in 2010 then they were in 1985. Back then, video tapes were insanely expensive. One tape went easily for twenty hours of minimum wage. Now they are going for two hours. Back then, video didn’t last as long as DVD’s do now ( with the wear and tear of rental abuse ). Back then, you had to stock the expensive machines to rent to the customer. Far, far higher inventory costs. And RedBox is not a video store killer, either.
It COULD have been. Except that today’s films are disgusting crap, nine out of ten times, and the smallest segment of the population are the youngsters watching that crap. The older folks would probably prefer to watch all the old movies that were much better made. That trend was already obvious to Netflix, even before streaming. They did a kick ass business NOT renting new releases, and that was BEFORE movie quality took a much bigger nose dive. It is all demographics, yo. Old population swelling, young population shrinking. For Christ’s sake, China, CHINA of all places, is seeing the same demographic. Only Africa and India have an exploding younger population.
A video store today could either place Redbox inside their store or open a store close to one, and survive nicely just renting older movies. All the money goes towards new releases in that business, and the old releases pay the expenses. Once that new release pays for itself, it is pure profit henceforth. So now that Blockbuster is out of business, and RedBox is stuck absorbing the cost of new releases ( you could nicely stock a store with over a thousand older movies for about five grand ), why aren’t there more independent video stores?
Again, let’s return to video streaming. I have a heck of a time finding quality programming for even two hours a day. It barely squeezes out cable as an entertainment package. I will grant you that it is far better TV than cable, as there are no commercials, nor is the price insane like cable. It is far better than over the air TV, as I cannot abide eight to ten minutes of commercials per half hour. Especially since those commercials are all geared towards old dying humpers. But it is BARELY better than regular TV or cable. It is a TV programming substitution. As a video store substitution, it is very, very poor.
TV shows are acceptable on Netflix. They are an improvement ( no commercials, binge watching, on your schedule ). Movies are, simply, NOT acceptable on Netflix. The selection blows. Even NOT expecting new releases, the selection sucks. While I am beginning to appreciate the increased quality of foreign and independent films, I can only even try out so many made in Bollywood productions. That might be fine for little brown people, but as a pasty white boy from a different culture, I still prefer American movies. All that crap from India cluttering up Netflix is quantity over quality. Not to mention, Netflix is VERY prone to go all gay PC or SJW. Most Hollywood movies are too, but not so in your face.
So, Netflix is a much better TV choice. What about movies? “Netflix killed video stores” is still a damn lie. Continued tomorrow.
END ( today's related link https://amzn.to/2r821h5 )
* By the by, all my writing is copyrighted. For the obtuse out there
Netflix actually has a lot more films than you know. It just shows you the ones they think you would like... here is a link on how to browse the ENTIRE catalog of available shows... https://mashable.com/2016/01/11/netflix-search-codes/#IHh6gShhh5qt
I've given similar lists a try before and wasn't impressed, but perhaps this one will be better. Thanks. I still think it is less of a choice than a video store, of course, but I'm also very happy for JUST better TV for $9 a month. Any movies are just a bonus.Delete
Absolutely agree. But it's not only the economy, the audiences have deteriorated as well.ReplyDelete
This is the upcoming generation : https://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/2018/04/24/schools-removing-analogue-clocks-exam-halls-teenagers-unable/
Yeah, don't hold your breath for moon colonies anytime soon. (Since we're on non-survivalist themes here, I believe that outer space is just a vast killing place full of radiation worse than your microwave, all we can manage to do is low orbit).
Very few good pictures were made in the last decade, it's a sign of bad decisionmaking but also of a deteriorating audience.
In ten years most people in the economy won't understand our cultural references. It will be another country altogether.
Well, Obammy led the way from Kenya. It is a immigrants culture now, in many places.Delete
I have all my check registers going back to 1982. Remember checks? My current bank account is a checking and it's 12 years old now and I have never written a check on it.ReplyDelete
Anyway, one of my registers in 1984 was the first year we got cable and the monthly bill was $8.45. Can you imagine that? I don't recall how many channels we had and we probably didn't have any of the premiums like HBO and such, but I remember it filled our evenings just like it did for millions.
We did upgrades over the years, channels came channels went, and more and more channels became available and we kept adding on more and more stuff. Mid 90's I realized even though we had more channels than ever more of the programming was becoming uninteresting to me. About the same time we got broadband and I was spending more time on the web.
By about 2005 I was rarely watching TV as the insanity therein was detestable. The channel logos in the corner, the pop-up notices, the crawlers and alerts, the commercials. Seems like the programmers were going out of their way to piss me off. By this time we were on a satellite with a cost of about $80 per month and it was mostly sitting there doing nothing cept keeping my ass pocket dented. In 2010 we cut it all. The dish is still on the backside of the roof and not visible from the road so I mostly don't even know it's there. We got a Leaf antenna that picks stuff up sometimes but mostly not and wonderful world of TV has mostly slipped into obsolescence around here. Now and then we'll stream something but cause we're on a Hughes internet dish with just 30 gb per month not a whole lot of that stuff goes on and never will.
Back in the 80's I told a friend a cable service should offer an ala carte service. Where you pick whatever channels you want and pay for them. None of this retarded package nonsense they seem to prefer, where you get lots of channels you never watch. I mean really, who is watching them 200 church channels? TV is for people with lack of imagination and sometimes people outgrow it.
If wages went up as much as cable a Wally worker would be pulling in $35 an hour. I don't feel bad for watching TV, as I read hours and hours a day ( I guess if you want to stretch things, you'd call it my job ) and by the end, I just want to shut off my brain. I have to earn my vegetable state. Kind of like eating your salad before desert :) But it also isn't doing any of us any good. It just will have to do since the reason it is so popular is it has filled in for the collapse of community ( I don't think TV made us anti-social, I think culture collapse did that. TV was just the substitution ).Delete
Following topic Jim. I think there is evolutionary influences at work to the rise, fall, disappearance of goods-services-even human activities. Pay phones/booths=gone, handwriting a letter-card to family=nearly extinct, etc. Minions should conduct a self assessment survey of those now available services-+/or activities that really are not crucial to daily living, and when unavailable post collapse, will they befall like a crying prepubescent girl 'cause my phone won't work! I enjoy my r&r time with tv (free-antenna) and movie collection (owned-no net required/leaving compound) like the next fellow. BUT, turn 'em off a while, go build something, fix something, prep some gear, etc. Avoid overindulgence in the opium of the masses.ReplyDelete
Hmmm, this might loop around to the not too long ago articles on "mental exhaustion". By all means, minimize ANY opiate. Junk food, luxury spending, booze, loose women and cocaine :) See a clear path towards the future. I have gone years before without TV. Without buying books. Now, while cheap ( free Internet-well, kinda free as it's in the rent payment ), I'm indulging. But expect to end any day. A bit of an adjustment, then moving on.Delete