business news in context, analysis with attitude

On the subject of possible federal legislation aimed at tech companies (which On Friday became actual bills, as reported above), one MNB reader wrote:

As an advertiser I’m all in favor of Congress taking action and limiting the power of big tech. Facebook and Google specifically.   

I think the big question, given the size of those two, is what if they say no… 

Although I’m sure they’re tracking my opinion as I type this…

Got the following email from an MNB reader about businesses outsourcing their delivery functions:

Ordered food from Papa Gino's recently (I know, I know!) for delivery, in NH. A half hour later I'm getting phone calls from San Mateo CA, which I don't answer, I don't know anyone there. Turns out it's the Door Dash driver, in my driveway!

Would have been nice if Papa Gino's had let me know they were outsourcing deliveries.

We had a story last week about how Oxnard, California, decided to pay essential retail front line employees a $1,000 hazard bonus, which it took out of federal stimulus money and which allowed the city tio avoid mandating retailer-paid hazard pay.

I said I had no problem with it, though there were MNB readers who felt that taxpayers were being screwed.

Here's another one:

Kevin, you don’t see it that way??  Who funds the government?  Taxpayers.  So, when anything comes out of the government that is an additional expense, “we the people” pay for it.  Hey I’m an essential worker too.  I pay taxes.

I reject what strikes me as an "if they're gonna get theirs, I gotta get mine" mentality.  Retail workers were a lot more at risk during the past 18 months than I have been, and so, if there is stimulus money out there, I'm okay with them getting a piece of it.

On another subject, from another MNB reader:

KC, read this article this morning and could not help but comment… 

PCC having hiring difficulties due to “a lack of foot traffic from office workers in downtown office buildings…”

I promise I’m not a cynic but I might add:  continued social unrest, soaring crime rates, lack of police presence, growing homeless population on the streets, etc… all the things businesses fear!  I applaud PCC for embracing their community and wish them a speedy solution!

Regarding UPS considering a same-day delivery offering, one MNB reader wrote:

UPS via their Strategic Enterprise Fund is an investor at least, some say started, a gig style same day delivery company called Roadie. What I often see posted are return lost luggage gigs from the airport to local residences. It doesn’t pay much but the idea is to get something delivered instantly by someone who was going to be making a similar trip anyway and if you have some cargo capacity you can make a few extra bucks.

On another subject, from another MNB reader:

Really enjoyed your views on Albums and Cassettes.  It started a very vigorous multi generational debate within our family.  For me, it's a quality vs. format issue.  But, from a business model perspective the music industry is very excited to have us buy the same music over and over again.  Brilliant if you think about it.  Not too many industries where that is even possible.  I have some select material on LP, but it's more to have the actual album than about the sound itself.

One last point.  If you're listening to your music streaming (compressed) and via Bluetooth (more compression on mid range) you are missing a lot.  Today I'm listening to Jimmy Buffet's "Songs You Don't Know By Heart", which has new guitar patterns that he and Mac are using.  Even my 60 year old ears can hear the difference between the CD and streaming.  You are missing a lot of the music quality.  But, I totally understand the convenience tradeoff.  All of us make that tradeoff depending on where we are in our daily routine.  But do yourself a favor and try listening to something you really enjoy in digital (CD, FLAC, etc.) and then listen in streaming service.  I think you'll hear what many of us pick up on.   

Thanks for the recommendation.  (I do like that album a lot.)

And, on still another subject, an MNB reader wrote:

Can’t agree with you more on "Mare of Easttown."  One of the best series I’ve seen this year.  And as for "Loki" (and the other Marvel runs on Disney+), I think the writing and production on them has been fantastic.  The sandbox of Disney+ allows these shows to shake the big budget requirements and tackle stories with meat on them.   

"WandaVision" tackling the depression of experiencing loss, and "Falcon and the Winter Soldier"confronting our history of celebrating POC as heroes; powerful stories.