Tag Archives: capitalism

Does Money Buy Education? – 7:30 PM, Wednesday, October 2

From Micaela Kaye ’16:

Come to “Does Money Buy Education?” presented by the WesDEFs! Through interactive activities and discussion we aim to raise awareness about the role money plays in education. We will look at how money is allocated in high schools as well as how money (and class) plays a role in college admissions.

Date: Wednesday, October 9th
Time: 7:30 pm
Place: 41 Wyllys Room 112

Students for a Free Society – Capitalism: The “End of History” or Doomed to Fail?

cjohnstonEndOfHistory

From Charlie Smith ’15

Come join “Wesleyan Students for a Free Society” for our first meeting of the semester. We will be discussing the fate and evolution of capitalism, comparing the works of thinkers from Joseph Schumpeter to Karl Marx and Francis Fukuyama. No previous knowledge is required only an open mind.

Date: Tuesday, January 29
Time: 6 pm
Place: 41 Wyllys Room 111

Skillstravaganza: An afternoon of SkillShare Workshopping

…SkillShare Collective Presents…
Skillstravaganza
An afternoon of SkillShare Workshopping 
Led by the Community, for the Community

Join us for an afternoon of learning, teaching, and sharing! All SkillShares will meet at the UOC, 190 High Street, and go from there. Check out this schedule for all of our workshops.

Date: Sunday, April 29
Time: 1 pm – 5 pm
Place: University Organizing Center

  • 1 – 2: Funky Hair Wraps
  • 1 – 2: How-To Skillshare
  • 1 – 2: Acro Yoga
  • 12:30: Archiving for Student Groups and Activists
  • 2 – 3: Changing a tire on your car
  • 2 – 3: Raised Vegetable Bed Construction and Hugelkultur
  • 2 – 3: Fermentation Nation: Pickling Galore
  • 3 – 3:30: Fire Spinning Poi
  • 3 – 4: Consent Workshop
  • 3 – 4: Swahili for Beginners
  • 3 – 5: Break Dancing
  • 3:30 – 4: Zine Making
  • 4 – 5: Bell Ringing Bonanza
  • 4 – 5: Living and Thriving with the Contradictions of Capitalism
  • 4 -5: Grant Writing
  • 4 – 5: In-Design Program Skills
  • 4 – 5: Comedy Improv Workshop
  • TBD: Basic to Not-So-Basic Knitting

Urban Outfitters, Right-Wing Cash Cow

Recycled news, but the frequent Urban Outfitters shoppers among you might be interested to know where a lot of your fashionably spent money goes: directly into the pockets of the far-right-wing establishment:

“…Shopping in Urban makes you feel like you are somewhere radically Left-wing, an antidote to the corporate blandness of The Gap. But Hayne is a stanch conservative who donates money to Republican politicians, not least Rick Santorum, a now failed Senator whose views on homosexuality are both bizarre and old-fashioned.

Hayne doesn’t give many interviews precisely because he’s afraid that college slackers who get to know him will suddenly realise that buying his clothes is like giving cash to George Bush. Once described as projecting a “Dick Cheney-esque aura of no-nonsense grayflannel gravitas”, Hayne must be the only retailer whose expansion plans depend on no one finding out who he really is.

Despite the strife in the sector, Urban just beat Wall Street profit expectations yet again. So far, the illusion is holding up perfectly.”

Just saying, even if you don’t aspire to be a conscious consumer/haven’t taken any standard social theory classes, it’s hard to miss the cynicism/ingenious irony of taking money from progressive liberals to give to social conservatives. Although this is the place that used to sell Ghettopoly, “Voting is for Old People” t-shirts, and kaffiyehs, so calculated cynicism shouldn’t be that surprising.

Links:
– ThisIsMoney: Square Who Got Hip to Urban Chic
– Philadelphia Weekly: Clothes Make the Man

Crazy Trade Secrets Coming to a Mall Near You

U.S. News & World Report fills us in into some sneaky tactics used by stores to get you to buy shit you don’t need. Be on the lookout for these creepy tactics:

  • Rapid Inventory Rotation: At Zara, the Spanish-owned clothing store, the turquoise and beige tunic on sale one day will be replaced by a yellow ruffled sundress the next. If you want the tunic, you have to buy it now, instead of waiting for a sale. According to the company, stores’ entire contents are turned over every three to four weeks, and new clothes arrive twice a week.

    “They’re training their customers to buy an item if they see something they like, because next week it might not be there,” says Robert Swinney, a doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. “That way you get people to buy at full price.” Swinney’s research, based on mathematical modeling, suggests that profits can be boosted by an average of 67 percent with such a strategy.

    Kit Yarrow, professor of consumer psychology at Golden Gate University, says that the quick-rotation strategy has the same disorienting effect as midnight madness sales and one-day specials. “They’re training [consumers] to purchase even though they may not be ready,” she says. “If people are buying for fear or anxiety that it won’t be available, then they’re less likely to make good purchasing decisions.”

    H&M, which also relies on the rapid-turnover strategy, says it is just satisfying customers’ desire to stay on top of fast-changing fashion trends. Plus, adds company spokeswoman Lisa Sandberg, “prices are affordable, so it’s OK” to buy something if you like it.

  • Aromatherapy: Companies including Sony and Westin Hotels & Resorts employ a range of smells to spur spending. Sony Style stores, which sell the company’s consumer electronics, puff a sweetish scent with citrus bases and vanilla overtones into the air. “They wanted to appeal to a female buyer more intimidated by electronic items,” says Van Epps of ScentAir, which helped Sony develop its secret formula.
  • Muzak: Muzak, which develops companies’ soundtracks, explains that the restaurant chain Red Lobster’s use of breezy pop songs, such as “How Sweet It Is (to Be Loved By You)” by Marvin Gaye, “embraces customers and makes them feel cared for and loved.”

None of these tactics are all that surprising, but I can’t believe that there’s a company literally called Muzak. Marvin Gaye, look how far we’ve fallen! They’re exploiting your catchy tunes to sell beer-battered fish fillets!! Oh the humanity! The humanity!