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OFF-TOPIC Price Gouger Is Left with Thousands of Products!

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The-J

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My solution is price discrimination, because the person who's willing to pay more probably needs it more.
Price discrimination is VERY illegal. And there's a reason for it: the reality is not that 'whoever pays more needs it more', it's that 'whoever pays more has the resources to do so'; especially in situations where demand is inelastic.

Of course, the form of price discrimination that is illegal is the kind that selects people and chooses different prices for them.

Companies can quite literally shut customers out of the market by hoarding supply and charging the profit maximizing price & selling the profit maximizing quantity. Demand is inelastic for a reason: it's because without it, people are clearly worse off to a great degree. In a pandemic situation, if N95 masks cost $100, there's going to be people who quite literally can't afford them. In your worldview, you posit that they don't deserve to have them because if they really needed them, they'd find a way to pay. But that's not how it turns out. People end up going without.

The free market's morals mirror those of its participants. If everyone thought like you, N95's would be prohibitively expensive for many.

The fact that someone is willing and able to pay $70 bucks for some squirty soap is because they (or their relatives) provided enough value to society to be able to do so. End of story.

This is also natural selection in a way, which has been around since the beginning of time.
This is where you and I fundamentally differ. I don't believe that some people deserve to live more than others because of their value to society. I think that we as humans have gotten to a point where we no longer have to make such value judgments to live good, meaningful lives. And I think it's up to people like @million$$$smile who are selling at fair prices on purpose to make sure that everyone who needs, gets. The price, and the intent, makes the difference, and that's why I don't condemn Randall for what he did. Good people go into business because they believe they can distribute benefits to the market more efficiently, and that's what he did. The fact that Randall stood to profit gave an incentive to do it. What the person in the article did was only see dollar signs, not caring if people went without.

Sometimes I get sad at the way people think, because I know that if I were worse off due to circumstances out of my control, I'd be considered less worthy of life.
 

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Tourmaline

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It's literally supply and demand. Once supply catches up, the price falls again.

It's too bad the dude can't do something like make a shopify store...
 

Entre Eyes

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Donated.

Would be premature to say "happy ending" They are still on his tail at the Attorney Gen. Office.
 

Tourmaline

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Typical law:

Selling commodities, household essentials, fuel, etc. after a declared state of emergency for more than 10% over the cost of these items immediately preceding the declaration.
 
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Johnny boy

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Price discrimination is VERY illegal. And there's a reason for it: the reality is not that 'whoever pays more needs it more', it's that 'whoever pays more has the resources to do so'; especially in situations where demand is inelastic.

Of course, the form of price discrimination that is illegal is the kind that selects people and chooses different prices for them.

Companies can quite literally shut customers out of the market by hoarding supply and charging the profit maximizing price & selling the profit maximizing quantity. Demand is inelastic for a reason: it's because without it, people are clearly worse off to a great degree. In a pandemic situation, if N95 masks cost $100, there's going to be people who quite literally can't afford them. In your worldview, you posit that they don't deserve to have them because if they really needed them, they'd find a way to pay. But that's not how it turns out. People end up going without.

The free market's morals mirror those of its participants. If everyone thought like you, N95's would be prohibitively expensive for many.



This is where you and I fundamentally differ. I don't believe that some people deserve to live more than others because of their value to society. I think that we as humans have gotten to a point where we no longer have to make such value judgments to live good, meaningful lives. And I think it's up to people like @million$$$smile who are selling at fair prices on purpose to make sure that everyone who needs, gets. The price, and the intent, makes the difference, and that's why I don't condemn Randall for what he did. Good people go into business because they believe they can distribute benefits to the market more efficiently, and that's what he did. The fact that Randall stood to profit gave an incentive to do it. What the person in the article did was only see dollar signs, not caring if people went without.

Sometimes I get sad at the way people think, because I know that if I were worse off due to circumstances out of my control, I'd be considered less worthy of life.
you are confused.

price discrimination means you set a price and who pay that price can buy it.
Like...the cost of a good or service...
Everything is discrimination. Anyone who wants to buy a McDouble for 10 cents is discriminated against. It’s economic theory, not racism... smh
 

Johnny boy

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Typical law:

Selling commodities, household essentials, fuel, etc. after a declared state of emergency for more than 10% over the cost of these items immediately preceding the declaration.
Yeah. We know it’s a law not to raise prices to meet economic demand. That’s why things sell out and people are left empty handed while peepers have thousands of rolls of toilet paper. Wouldn’t happen if people raised prices according to an increase in demand.. smh
 
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MJ DeMarco

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Someone tagged me for my opinion on this...

Here it is.

I'm all for people profiting off a perceived demand increase, or profiting on their prediction on an uptick in demand.

However...

And it is a BIG however...

When the line goes from a matter of opinion and economic speculation (hey, selling these hand sanitizers to preppers is a great idea!) to a matter of life or death (hey, selling these hand sanitizers to people desperate to stay healthy) is when things change.

Selling a product to a prepper for a premium who might be overreacting (before the demand curve changes from linear to exponential due to reality) is OK.

Selling a product for an enormous premium to a common citizen who just wants to protect his family, well, that's the line that I feel should not be crossed.

A-holes like this guy is why capitalism (and by association, entrepreneurs) in this country is besmirched.

Not sure how anyone could sleep at night knowing they sold a 2 oz bottle of hand sanitizer for $50. If that's you and you call yourself an entrepreneur, you deserve CV19.
 

Kak

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Just imagine how many people got infected (and died) because they didn't manage to buy the necessary equipment to protect from the virus (whether these are masks, sanitizers etc.) due to the overpriced items. I know supply and demand, but the fact still remains.
Actually, the real fact is that the price doesn’t matter if there isn’t any available.

Currently, I couldn’t get hand sanitizer from a store if I brought them a grand.

I am NOT sticking up for the black market, but this became a bigger problem than it had to by everyone running around bitching about price gouging and their appetite for price controls. The shit sold out in like a day. How helpful are those laws now?

Would you pay $10-15 for a bottle of hand sanitizer now? I would probably buy several.
 
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Kak

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This belongs in this thread.


A very clear perspective on “price gouging” laws.

Basically they are bullshit.

First there is no such thing price gouging. It is not a definable circumstance. If you charged too much, people wouldn’t be interested.

Ken Paxton. My socialist attorney general has used the word “unjustifiable” over and over to describe the prices people sell things for. No. If goods are actually selling, it is justifiable. The market price of these goods now reflect the fact that you are dealing with a precious commodity.

Want to know the reason the shelves are empty? Price gouging laws.

Let me paint this picture for you. Let’s use laundry detergent as an example. Stores have been forced by economically illiterate Paxton to continue selling at last month’s market price instead of this month’s. People hoard at ridiculously low prices. Now there is none available and a legitimate shortage. If you want laundry detergent you’ll probably have to buy it on craigslist for 60 bucks now.

The government policy backfired. The black market price is artificially propped up by government making it impossible for legitimate sellers to compete. Supply needs to be considered. Not just demand.

There is a curve of supply and demand equilibrium relative to pricing. There is a point on that curve where people would buy product and also leave some on the shelves. That is what intelligent people should be striving for.

Now, let’s take that even one step further. Let’s send the profits through the supply chain instead of lining an enterprising hobo’s pockets with black market profit. What happens then? Walmart charges customers a little more. Tide charges Walmart a little more. Tide can seriously ramp up production. The market price eventually recovers A LOT FASTER because the shortage will be satisfied faster.

Everyone who is pissed off that there is a shortage of affordable consumables can thank their socialistic state governments for moving the entire market for these goods to the black market.

A sky high BLACK MARKET price was NOT caused by capitalism. It was caused directly by price controls. Capitalism would have reflected a true market price.

@MTEE1985 stuck a bottle of Purell on eBay. Purely as an experiment. Auction format. The bidders took it over $20 before eBay took it down. I suppose they price gouged themselves?
 
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Voice Angel

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Gouging is just disgusting. Greed, plain and simple.

People have plundered every Costco and grocery store in the area for tp and other essentials.

Those hoarding drove a second tier of people (us) to have to head out and pick up what we need for our regular supply or risk getting nothing whatsoever thanks to the hoarders.

I have nothing against entrepreneurship but never let “economy override humanity.”

Given that this pandemic will get worse before it gets better, several of us in our area have started a FB group where we volunteer to buy, donate and deliver supplies to the elderly or disabled. And yes, that means donate from our personal non-hoarder stocks if not available in stores.

I sent an email to our building management asking if they would put notices in the building lobbies so those who need help can reach out to the office. We would then spread the word in our FB group, pick up / donate supplies and drop them off in a no-contact way.

Surprisingly, all our local stores have restocked pretty quickly which is great.

But at least we have a look-out-for-each–other plan in place as we go along, especially with the social distancing.

If any of you are interested in starting a backup support plan in your buildings too, feel free to pm me. I’d be happy to share the wording I sent and you can just copy and paste. We’re doing that now with multiple condos / apartments in the area.

Stay safe. xoxo
 

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The-J

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you are confused.

price discrimination means you set a price and who pay that price can buy it.
Like...the cost of a good or service...
Everything is discrimination. Anyone who wants to buy a McDouble for 10 cents is discriminated against. It’s economic theory, not racism... smh
That's not what price discrimination is. That's just setting a price. Everyone pays the same price in that example. That's not price discrimination. In that example, the people who can't afford it don't buy it. (I will come back to this point)

Price discrimination is a single seller selling the same thing for different prices to different people. Your improper use of the term has indeed confused me. And yes, the semantics matter. Please be a little clearer when trying to argue your point. (And racism isn't even relevant here, why bring it up?)

@Kak raises an entirely separate point, which is absolutely valid. Setting an artificial price point and mandating that price point on threat of legal force causes businesses to sell at an inefficient quantity and price, meaning that supply limits itself. That is in fact a problem and creates an illegal arbitrage opportunity that the government was trying to prevent. The only way this solves the problem is if the supply is sufficiently high to meet demand, in which case the law is unnecessary in the first place.

The solution to this problem is an agreement among actors in the free market that the price the gouger is setting is too high. But what happens when demand doesn't care about the price? Then you have a problem of a portion people being unable to afford it. Whether you're talking about a McDouble or necessary preventative measures to prevent the infection of a potentially deadly disease. In a purely capitalistic libertarian worldview, this is perfectly fine. In a purely egalitarian communal (won't say THAT word here but you know what I mean), this is evil and the solution is mandates, market be damned! But as KAK pointed out that simply doesn't work (just as that idea which won't be named).

Unfortunately it's common to bring economics into a moral debate, and morals into an economic debate. When two people are arguing with different scoreboards, nobody wins and everyone's angry and they just direct that anger at each other. I have thus made this mistake.
 

Mckenzie

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Someone once said, those who can; do, those who can't criticize
because they jealous of what you’ve achieved. Why you and why not them earned these money?!
 

Successful Steve

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What’s crazy is that we are talking how people need hand sanitizer to survive when life has been around for 10,000 years and hand sanitizer was invented what less than a hundred years ago?

Our ancestors have to be rolling over in their Graves knowing we are arguing about people hogging Purell and Charmin
 

MoneyDoc

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My opinion:

If we are bashing people for selling hand sanitizers at a premium due to increased demand, we should be bashing the manufacturers and retailers as well for not giving them away for free with each grocery purchase during this time. Not only would this stop the panic buying (set a limit), this would not create an environment for price "gougers" to come about. That way, EVERYONE will have what they need. If I was a big retail chain, I would do exactly that. Do you know how much it costs to make hand sanitizer? Cents.
 

Real Deal Denver

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This belongs in this thread.


A very clear perspective on “price gouging” laws.

Basically they are bullshit.

First there is no such thing price gouging. It is not a definable circumstance. If you charged too much, people wouldn’t be interested.

Ken Paxton. My socialist attorney general has used the word “unjustifiable” over and over to describe the prices people sell things for. No. If goods are actually selling, it is justifiable. The market price of these goods now reflect the fact that you are dealing with a precious commodity.

Want to know the reason the shelves are empty? Price gouging laws.

Let me paint this picture for you. Let’s use laundry detergent as an example. Stores have been forced by economically illiterate Paxton to continue selling at last month’s market price instead of this month’s. People hoard at ridiculously low prices. Now there is none available and a legitimate shortage. If you want laundry detergent you’ll probably have to buy it on craigslist for 60 bucks now.

The government policy backfired. The black market price is artificially propped up by government making it impossible for legitimate sellers to compete. Supply needs to be considered. Not just demand.

There is a curve of supply and demand equilibrium relative to pricing. There is a point on that curve where people would buy product and also leave some on the shelves. That is what intelligent people should be striving for.

Now, let’s take that even one step further. Let’s send the profits through the supply chain instead of lining an enterprising hobo’s pockets with black market profit. What happens then? Walmart charges customers a little more. Tide charges Walmart a little more. Tide can seriously ramp up production. The market price eventually recovers A LOT FASTER because the shortage will be satisfied faster.

Everyone who is pissed off that there is a shortage of affordable consumables can thank their socialistic state governments for moving the entire market for these goods to the black market.

A sky high BLACK MARKET price was NOT caused by capitalism. It was caused directly by price controls. Capitalism would have reflected a true market price.

@MTEE1985 stuck a bottle of Purell on eBay. Purely as an experiment. Auction format. The bidders took it over $20 before eBay took it down. I suppose they price gouged themselves?
I find it ironic, and sickening, that gov can't do anything about drugs being inflated 5,000 - yes, I said 5,000 - percent. But they can sure come down on some putz buying toilet paper or hand sanitizer.

People don't buy drugs that have been inflated so high for fun. It's a life-saving necessity.

I think there's a special place in hell for those people. Listening Pharma boy?

Of course, the news shy away from those stories. Money talks and only the little guys get leaned on.
 

Real Deal Denver

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Gouging is just disgusting. Greed, plain and simple.

People have plundered every Costco and grocery store in the area for tp and other essentials.

Those hoarding drove a second tier of people (us) to have to head out and pick up what we need for our regular supply or risk getting nothing whatsoever thanks to the hoarders.

I have nothing against entrepreneurship but never let “economy override humanity.”

Given that this pandemic will get worse before it gets better, several of us in our area have started a FB group where we volunteer to buy, donate and deliver supplies to the elderly or disabled. And yes, that means donate from our personal non-hoarder stocks if not available in stores.

I sent an email to our building management asking if they would put notices in the building lobbies so those who need help can reach out to the office. We would then spread the word in our FB group, pick up / donate supplies and drop them off in a no-contact way.

Surprisingly, all our local stores have restocked pretty quickly which is great.

But at least we have a look-out-for-each–other plan in place as we go along, especially with the social distancing.

If any of you are interested in starting a backup support plan in your buildings too, feel free to pm me. I’d be happy to share the wording I sent and you can just copy and paste. We’re doing that now with multiple condos / apartments in the area.

Stay safe. xoxo
How ironic your tag line says angel. I think there is a special place in heaven for people like you.
 

S.Y.

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I find it ironic, and sickening, that gov can't do anything about drugs being inflated 5,000 - yes, I said 5,000 - percent. But they can sure come down on some putz buying toilet paper or hand sanitizer.

People don't buy drugs that have been inflated so high for fun. It's a life-saving necessity.

I think there's a special place in hell for those people. Listening Pharma boy?

Of course, the news shy away from those stories. Money talks and only the little guys get leaned on.
We have to factor in the r&d costs all those companies are going through.

We can look at one product and see a huge price increase...

But we also have to look at all those costs those companies have to produce the drugs. They need to be way to recoup or it will not be sustainable.
 

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