Black Friday is upon us, and — in keeping with tradition — so are the attendant brawls, melees, assaults, thefts and general mayhem.
Nevertheless, Black Friday appears a bit more sedate this year overall. Reuters reports:
Bargain hunters found relatively little competition compared with previous years. Some had already shopped Thursday evening, reflecting a new normal of U.S. holiday shopping, where stores open up with deals on Thanksgiving itself, rather than waiting until Black Friday.
Retailers "have taken the sense of urgency out for consumers by spreading their promotions throughout the year and what we are seeing is a result of that," said Jeff Simpson, director of the retail practice at Deloitte. Traffic in stores was light on Friday, while Thursday missed his expectations…[more]
The impending departure of Speaker of the House John Boehner gives the House Republicans a real opportunity to accomplish something. But an opportunity is not a guarantee. It is a little like a football team being first down and goal at the ten-yard line.
You have a good chance of scoring a touchdown from there -- if you can get your act together. But you could also find yourself having to settle for a field goal. Or for a missed field goal.
And of course you can also fumble the ball and have the other team grab it -- and run it all the way back across the field to score a touchdown against you.…