Recently as part of my job here at Econedlink I updated that data used in one of our lessons Let's Talk Turkey: The Cost of Thanksgiving Dinner. The lesson uses an annual report released by the American Farm Bureau Federation which covers the prices of a list of ten items which make up the "Classic Thanksgiving Dinner." The report for 2011 showed a 13% increase in the price of the dinner. Most of the increase comes from a rise in the price of the turkey, and the cost for meal comes to $49.20 for ten people. The large increase in the price of the dinner is not the end of the world for consumers but it will certainly mean that families will have slightly less money to spend on other items.
Enter Wal-Mart. The largest corporation in the world with annual revenues of over $400 billion issued a press release last week showing the price of their Thanksgiving dinner. Price Tag: $34.03, 30% less than the National Average. Once again, the much maligned Wal-Mart comes to the rescue for their customers. On a personal level I have worked in a number of different stores in Southeast Nebraska during my previous job at Coca-Cola. The employees and the management at Wal-Mart do one thing consistently, put the welfare of their customers first by providing them with the same products they can get anywhere else at lower prices.
Over Carpe Diem, economist Mark Perry says, "What single organization in human history has made the greatest contribution to enriching and improving the lives of the poor, the middle class, the average citizen, the bottom of "the 99%," etc.? I Nominate Wal-Mart."
Was John Maynard Keynes correct, can government fix the mass unemployment generated by a financial slump? Or is that a dangerous delusion as argued by his arch critic, Friedrich von Hayek? Sir Harold Evans chairs this Oxford-style debate, which focuses on the publication of Nicolas Wapshott's Keynes Hayek: The Clash That Defined Modern Economics.