This Christmas: Foreclosure in HD

27 10 2008

Christmas-time is upon us and by all accounts it’s gonna be a BIG one… and when I say ‘accounts’ I’m talking bank accounts.

Because of all the economic turmoil we’ve seen this year, retailers are BANKING on YOU to bail them out the same way Capitol Hill did Wall Street.

This year you can expect to be lured with never before seen low prices on all sorts of ‘big-ticket’ items. HDTV flat-screens, home theater systems and high end appliances will be sold at price-points so obscene that you will feel like it’s too good to pass up.

For instance these are the projected price ranges for Flat-screen LCD, HDTV, and Plasma displays this holiday shopping season:

  • 19-inch high definition LCD: $199
  • 32-inch HD LCD: $399-$499
  • 40-inch 1080p LCD: $799-$999
  • 42-inch HD plasma: $599-$699
  • 50-inch HD plasma: $899-$999

My my that sounds like a sweet deal doesn’t it? And just to think that these same types of offers will be pouring in at you across the board this shopping season.

Oh yeah, and on top of all that, the Christmas shopping season Officially started October 1st this year, to give you plenty of time to start this festive season off with a bang!

This Christmas, retailers are gonna sell things so cheap that you’ll want to buy everything you see so you can put it in your house. But if you fall for that trap you’re gonna find yourself and your gorgeous HDTV out on the streets!

I’m willing to bet that half of my readers aren’t current on their mortgage, but they’re already beginning to plan their Christmas lists… now understand, I’m not saying that to be mean or hurtful but the statistics on the news are coming from somewhere. And even if those numbers are grossly exaggerated, whatever the ‘real’ numbers are they’re probably still shockingly high.

C’mon, lets be real. Odds are you or someone you know will buy one of those flat-screens at that ‘bargain’ of a price this year… but why? Do they NEED a new TV? Probably not, because if they’re like most other Americans then the odds are also high that there are more TV sets in their household than people!
So again, they’re not out buying them because they NEED them. So then what is it that ‘makes’ us want them?

It’s my belief that the Flat-screen TV has replaced the ‘White picket fence’ as the feature of choice in the American home. The same way that ‘Chrome rims’ have replaced the sound system as the accessory of choice in the American car. The flat-screen has become what I call an ‘affordable’ luxury item – a universal status symbol of sorts – that indicates your earning potential and that you have disposable income. The catch is that most of us don’t have ‘disposable income’ we just ‘dispose of our income’ unwisely. I could go on and on with examples of this concept but I’ll wrap this post up with one that has really bothered me this week.

If you live anywhere near a college, high school, or middle school, then you probably witnessed the annual homecoming festivities. I was recently told about some local teenagers who got their parents to pay for them to rent multiple stretch limos and drive them to downtown DC for dinner. (You’re probably saying big whoop-deedoo, @W) Here’s the part that set me off… these teenagers wanted to go to PALM. Palm restaurant is a notoriously exclusive and expensive restaurant across the street from the White House. On any given night you can see Karl Rove, Colin Powell, Tiger Woods and various hot-shot CEO’s and executives at various tables. It will run you about $100 for a meal… an individual meal. And here theses kids are wanting to eat at this place for HOMECOMING! And their not even upper-classmen either, their freshman and sophomores! What are they gonna do for graduation, charter a jet to Vegas for dinner at the Bellagio?!?

The saddest part is that you cant blame the kids for the ridiculousness of that story. The blame is on us, the adults who they’ve watched spend recklessly for their entire lives. The materialism that dictates so much of their social interaction – all of the bling, and the swag, and the stuntin – is just an extension of what they’ve always seen from us. It’s just sad that they’ve had to view all of this with a level of detail and clarity that even the most expensive HDTV setup cant rival.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas…

@W

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