Tuesday, August 26, 2014

McDonalds Then and Now

You cannot be copied when passion/joy is the combination.  Countless people sell "make the dining table nicer" but only Martha Stewart is a billionaire making the "nice table easier."  Anyone can make powerful computing but only Jobs makes computing powerful.  And anyone can build a hamburger empire, but Ray Kroc figured out the difference was on the side: the french fries.
Kroc writes “One of my suppliers told me ‘Ray, you know you aren’t in the hamburger business at all. You’re in the french-fry business. I don’t know how the livin’ hell you do it, but you’ve got the best french fries in town, and that’s what’s selling folks on your place.’”. Looking back, Kroc writes “The quality of our french fries was a large part of McDonald’s success.”
In every instance anyone can copy the competition, and usually people try, but the innovator who works through suffering (passion) to get to the joy behind it is unbeatable.  The money follows eventually, indeed part of the struggle is often there is not money, which chases off those who are in business for money.

Now if you read the whole article, you quickly realize that the French Fries that exalted Micky D's to #1 are not the French Fries today.  Read about what was involved back then (leave some skin on, cold water, fresh oil) and you realize McDonalds once served wholesome food.  to me McDonalds today is inedible.  In fact, McDonalds is demonstrably a toy store today.
For the periods covered, McDonald’s reported that it paid its toy supplier 43 cents per toy. The total cost to McDonald’s for the toy and packaging of the Happy Meals was greater than the cost of food for each Happy Meal type.

Once currency was separated from gold in 1971, people could lend credit at interst and then it became a matter of get big or get out.  If you could out-borrow everyone else, buy subsidies for your ingredients (corn, corn syrup, soy, beet sugar, sodium) you could simply crowd out anyone selling good food.  You could throw in a toy and finish off the competition.

99% of the fast food ads on TV directed at children are from McDonalds and Burger King.  Truly your tax dollars and subsidies at work.

The pendulum is swinging back, but we also need to return to the means by which we once conducted business, and get rid of the lending of credit at usury.  This does not mean good ideas go without funding, McDonalds obviously grew before 1971.  It is just that under capitalism good things go bad as they grow beyond what is warranted by the offer.  If we were not all subsidizing the bad food at McDonalds, they could not offer it to begin with, and packaging to rope in kids.

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