Walgreens' Cost Cutting Lesson From Uber -- Will Close 200 Stores But Keep Employees as Independent Drug Dealers
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Last August, Walgreens announced its plans for a $1 billion cost-reduction initiative. The largest U.S. drugstore chain upped the ante this Thursday when it revealed the anticipated closure of 200 stores across the nation, a move intended to further boost profits and increase the proposed cost-cutting effort by another $500 million. “After a rigorous analysis, the company has identified additional opportunities for cost savings, primarily in its Retail Pharmacy USA division,” company spokespeople explained in a statement to the press. Reorganizing staff and eliminating overhead expenses were two of the main strategies discussed. However, the decision to shutter 200 points of operation has left many wondering what will become of the workers in those locations. Walgreens vowed that it will not lay off its employees. Instead, the company launched a revolutionary program, patterned off of Uber’s obscenely lucrative business model, which will allow the affected workers to become independent contractors who peddle drugs directly to consumers on the streets.
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- On Tuesday, authorities in South Carolina announced that a 33-year-old police officer will face murder charges for the shooting death of an unarmed black man during a routine traffic stop. North Charleston Officer Michael Slager gunned down Walter Scott, 50, as he ran from the policeman’s drawn pistol. Video of the confrontation, captured by a bystander near the scene, clearly shows that the officer pumped at least eight rounds into Scott’s back. He then cuffed the hands of the corpse. Seizing the opportunity to divert attention away from recent controversies, relieved Republican lawmakers said the South Carolina tragedy settles a longstanding debate on the contentious topic of civil rights: uptight, conservative white people are still more afraid of unarmed black men than gays.
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Easter, one of the most important holidays in Christendom, celebrates the resurrection of Jesus, who was said to have risen from the dead three days after his crucifixion. This supernatural event serves as the foundation of the religion, and is also cited as proof that God granted faithful adherents “a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” But based on reports recently leaked from a cemetery in the small Italian town of Buffalora, Jesus was not the only soul to return from the dead around this time of year. Even more troubling, according the cemetery’s current caretaker, is the increasingly unmanageable number of “resurrections” that have taken place over the past two Easters.
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The success of Uber, the app-based personal transportation service, has renewed the demand for independent contractors. It’s also ushered in an emerging freelance marketplace called the “gig economy.” While the model may be great for business, labor advocates say it’s horrendous for workers and the wider economy. Pushing employees to sell their services independently weakens their security, cripples their long-term financial stability and depletes their purchasing power. Employees are, after all, consumers. But with the announcement Wednesday of an app-based call service for prostitutes -- the result of a partnership between Google Maps and Unter, a heavily funded startup by a conglomerate of savvy pimps -- labor regulators worry that the rise of this new “trick economy” will wreak further damage on millions of housewives and moonlighters who are seeking part-time opportunities to strengthen their household incomes.
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) relentlessly nattered his way into the history books in 2013 after a 21-hour talkathon that has been labeled a “fauxibuster” because it did not serve to stop a vote over the Affordable Care Act, as a filibuster is intended to do. Inconsequential as his rant may have seemed, the Tea Party darling managed to portray himself as a conservative folk hero for the far-right fringes of the Republican faction. Then, this month, he did something even more bizarre: he enrolled in Obamacare. The newly announced White House contender explained his decision as a sacrifice to illustrate the dangers of socialized medicine to the American people, even though it involves putting his own family at risk. As conservative political experts understand, providing a nation’s people with affordable and universal health coverage inevitably leads to the extermination of millions within an arbitrarily chosen ethnic or religious group. But Cruz wants his constituents to know that he is not all talk. He opposes government handouts. So on Tuesday, he boldly renounced all of the Hitler-esque, taxpayer funded benefits he receives as a member of the U.S. Congress.