Fast Food Nation? Redux

Posted by: on Nov 20, 2003 | No Comments

On the 5th I mentioned KFC’s kookie “healthy” fried chicken ad campaign, along with their even more whacky “not applicable in all areas” fresh guarantee. Perhaps they ran out of crack, or maybe it was the complaint the Center for Science in the Public Interest filed claiming false advertising, but KFC won’t be touting the greasy-bucket’s pound shedding capabilities any longer.
Freshness continues to not be available at all locations, however.

Fast Food Nation?

Posted by: on Nov 5, 2003 | No Comments

Lately the fast food industry has been behaving very strangely.
First, I see this KFC TV ad the other day. It was triumphing the — yeah, hold on to your seats — diet properties of their fresh fried chicken for low carb diets! C’mon Atkiners, line up for a grease-filled bucket and watch the pounds fall off! Oh, and I bolded that fresh part because at the bottom of the screen, in the small print, was: Fresh claim may not be applicable in all areas. Um, just WTF does that mean? And how do I find which locations are “fresh” participants? *shudder*
Then I’m watching the news tonight and all asudden McDonald’s and others have decided that shoving 9 chickens in one cage was perhaps just a little bit cruel. (Apparently 7 per cage is not cruel according to “scientists.” []) The Mickey D’s Director of Social Responsibility (I really enjoyed that one!) was describing how the geniuses at HQ had finally figured out that their customers actually liked animals and preferred they not be treated like utter shit:

It’s a part of doing business. It’s not a fad. It’s not just a nice thing to do. It’s not a left field idea. It’s mainstream.

Oy vey.

Wal-Mart commits voter fraud?

Posted by: on Nov 5, 2003 | No Comments

While most have heard about Wal-Mart’s slave labor problems [], today’s Chronicle spotlights a local bay area community which said “no” to Wal-Mart [] and it’s hidden costs to taxpayers. Wal-Mart’s response was nothing short of moral bankruptcy: an underhanded campaign to purposely mislead public opinion which could very well be just downright illegal.
Not only have they disguised their campaign as a do-good government program called “CAN”, but they are participating in what may be outright voter fraud:

You also get a chance to fill out a voter registration application, which is conveniently mailed to Wal-Mart’s CAN, rather than to the registrar of voters. If you want more information, you are referred to an 800 telephone number.
But 20 calls to the number elicited the same response: “Only ‘Kathy’ knows about the program, she’s on the other line, so just leave your name and number.” Is it conceivable that Wal-Mart has hired only one person who is familiar with CAN? Or is this just a ploy to gather names and phone numbers to enlist shoppers in its political campaign?

Pretty despicable stuff. But Americans have proven over and over again they’re too stupid to tell the difference between a real bargain and a boondoggle laden with hidden costs. Just look at our current administration! Of course, Wal-Mart knows this and they also know they’ll win. And guess what? That 22 cents you saved on Scope is going to cost you $22 in taxes and community services.

Later, DICK!

Posted by: on Sep 17, 2003 | No Comments

So, the NYSE board’s compensation committee a few weeks ago decided to award Chairman Dick Grasso a $140M pay and retirement package. Uh-huh, one-hundred-forty-MILLION dollars.
Now, the NYSE is an organization that absolutely must maintain it’s credibility as the world’s largest and most respected exchange. Natch, the board which is mostly made up of big-wigs from financial powerhouses (they all sit on each other’s boards) thought no one would notice… but, of course, everyone did. And I mean everyone. And they were pissed. So… very… very… pissed. Financial news orgs were abuzz with industry watchdogs crying foul.
Today, in almost record time (3 weeks?) ol’ Dicky was kicked to the curb. Not like he’ll be checking into the poor house or anything.
An attempt will be made to make this all go away all nice like, but if I were a company looking to get listed, I’d be calling the NASDAQ right about now.
MMMM… the sweet smell of corruption!