Category Archives: Kit Bashing

“I don’t sleep at night, it’s killing me” Massive Macy’s Meltdown? : U.S. Retail/Banking/Service Sector collapse, January 2017

Incomplete list of U.S. retail/banking/service sector job loss announcements and shutdowns made or announced in January 2017:

Alabama: Tennessee based Fred’s Discount Store announced it will shutdown at least three stores in The Yellowhammer State by the end of February, blaming crashing sales (or is it really because of Fred’s $90-million USD takeover of RiteAid?).  Best Buy shutting down its electronics store in Florence, 60 jobs lost in February.

Alaska: After 20 years gift shop Flypaper shutdown: “I watched the foot traffic slowly drop off. Whether those people are going to big box stores or online shopping or not shopping, I don’t know.”-Kim Barret, owner

Arkansas: Bentonville based Walmart suddenly laid off “hundreds” of corporate and regional office employees (and that’s not including the store shutdowns and layoffs, read on)!

 California: Vernon based clothing retailer BCBG Max Azria Group warned it must shutdown brick-n-mortar stores across the United States, no numbers given. In Berkeley, an American Apparel store shutdown as part of the dead company’s plan to shutdown all 110 stores by April (after selling out to an evil British empire Canadian competitor)! In Santa Barbara, after 63 years Kernohan’s Toys shutdown, the owners said increased competition from big players, and increased operating costs, are killing mom-n-pops.  Ohio based Macy’s issued multiple shutdown WARNS for stores in Santa Barbara, San Diego and San Francisco, more than 310 jobs lost by March! Arkansas based Walmart laying off 174 people at their San Bruno location, by the end of March!  Too Big to Jail San Francisco based (and Warren Buffet owned) Wells Fargo shutting down more than 4-hundred offices by the end of 2018!  San Francisco based GAP laying off 216 people by the end of March!  Wet Seal shutting down their Irvine operations, 148 jobs gone by mid-March! In Petaluma, the decades old Petaluma Valley Athletic Club shutdown because “the economics of this town have changed”, it was sold to a local church.  In Burlingame, Alaska Air Group finally notified state employment development administrators that they eliminated 275 jobs back in October 2016! Utility company Pacific Gas & Electric eliminating more than 250 jobs by mid-March, that’s a according to WARN filings, but local news reports say as many as 450 in-house jobs and 8-hundred contractors will be let go in favor of foreign workers!!!  In Foster City, VISA eliminating 58 jobs by mid-March.  San Diego Sportservice issued a mass shutdown WARN, 1-thousand-130 Qualcomm Stadium  jobs gone by the end of March! Penske Vehicle Services shutting down their Westlake Village ops in April.  In Irvine, live entertainment company Live Nation Worldwide issued a mass shutdown WARN, 905 jobs gone by the end of April!  Bank of the West laying off 47 people in San Ramon, by April.  The Lake Tahoe Ritz Carlton shutting down, 225 jobs supposedly temporarily lost starting in April!  Nordstrum’s shutting down their iconic MainPlace location in Santa Ana, 195 jobs lost in March! In Thousand oaks, Magic Planet costume shop shutdown due to declining profits caused by increased competition and increased rent: “… the rent keeps going up where it’s too high for us to continue. And internet sales. More people are, unfortunately for us, feeling comfortable at home on their computer…”-Michael Brotman, owner

Colorado: In Cortez, after 70 years Havran Dry Cleaners shutting down, the owner says declining sales means it’s time to retire.

Connecticut: In Stamford, evil British empire based Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) issued yet another layoff WARN, this time 21 people jobless by mid-March. Hotel chain Marriott eliminating 50 jobs in Stamford by the end of March. Penske Vehicle Services shutting down ops in Danbury.  Waterbury based Webster Bank shutting down eight offices across four states.

Florida:   Ohio based Macy’s issued multiple shutdown WARNS for stores in Oviedo, Sarasota and Tampa, 272 jobs lost by mid-March! In Tampa, Advantage-EZ Rent-a-Car laying off 25 people in February.  Also in Tampa, Binder & Binder-Lake Pointe One eliminating 65 jobs by the end of March.  Palmeto based Ringling Brothers-Barnum & Bailey issued a shutdown WARN, 462 jobs gone by the end of May! Circus administrators blame their lack of ticket sales on being forced to stop using elephants in their acts.  Arkansas based Walmart eliminating 79 jobs at their Saint Petersburg store, by the end of March.  In North Miami Beach, Equity One eliminating 48 jobs by June.  In Jacksonville, PHH Mortgage eliminating at least seven jobs by mid-April.  Boca Raton based Home Depot suddenly began eliminating corporate jobs, no warning or explanation to local news media.  Local news media say they were notified by now former employees.  In Orlando, after only five years shopping center Artegon Marketplace shutdown, it was revealed it was put up for sale back in August 2016!  California based Cost Plus World Market shutdown its Coconut Point Mall location, no reason given.

Illinois: Arkansas based Walmart issued a shutdown WARN for its Chicago store on West Monroe Street, 96 jobs gone by mid-March.     Ohio based Macy’s issued a shutdown WARN for its Bloomingdale location, 95 jobs gone by mid-March.  California based GAP suddenly shutdown its Factory Store in Bradley, 20 jobs lost.  The Fitzpatric Company shutting down their Elmherst services ops, 63 jobs gone by the end of March due to “poor economy”.  Jewlery retailer Zales shutdown their Sandburg Mall store, no reason given. ZaZu Gifts shutdown two stores, one in Rockford and one in Roscoe, due to the owner’s health propblems (supposedly diagnoised by a doctor as stress caused by running a mom-n-pop operation). In Douglas, after 95 years (surviving The Great Depression and numerous recessions) Meyers Ace Hardware shutdown due to five years of crashing sales: “I don’t sleep at night, it’s killing me. I still need a job. I am by no means getting rich on this deal.”-Dave Meyers, owner

Indiana: Ascena Retail Group shutdown its women’s clothing store Loft, at the Circle Centre Mall.

Kansas: Topeka based Payless shoe seller suddenly laid off 110 HQ employees!  Elsewhere, another 55 Payless employees were suddenly dumped.  Local news media say laid off employees were given no notice and were escorted out by security guards!  Payless representatives said the decision to suddenly dump 165 employees was made after a review of company performance.  After 52 years Tiffany Town gift store shutdown in Prairie Village, the retiring owner blamed decreased sales and increased rent and operating costs.  Derby Antique Market shutdown due to declining sales.

Maryland: In Baltimore, after 85 years Kurek’s Hardware shutdown, it’s up for sale so the owner can retire.

Massachusetts: In Brocktown, after six years Hogie’s Hobbies shutdown, but continues to run its model railroad museum.  The owner blames customers for his hobby shop shutdown saying for the month of December he had a measly $5-hundred USD in sales: “There’s a lot of people downtown, but they don’t spend their money downtown. The whole atmosphere for people actually shopping here is not here.”-Bill Hogan

Michigan:  Christian founded Habitat for Humanity shutdown two Detroit area ReStores (for lack of sales) and laid off an undisclosed amount of people, blaming it on the fact that more than 40% of the families living in Habitat for Humanity houses can’t pay their supposedly ‘affordable’ low income mortgages! (that’s right, those Habitat for Humanity houses are not free)  In Bay City, after 117 years (surviving numerous recessions and depressions) Utermalen Furniture went out-of-business, the family owners said “Sales were down”.   Benton Harbor based appliance maker Whirlpool said it will eliminate 5-hundred jobs with its Europe, Middle East and Africa dryer manufacturing operations!  In Traverse City, after 34 years Kim’s Hallmark shutdown due to jacked-up rent.

Minnesota: TCI Financial shutting down ten offices located in Cub Food grocery stores, blaming increased rent and decreased customer usage.  Bank UMB shutting down their Warrensburg office, on North Holden Street, in mid-April. Ascena Retail Group suddenly laid off 165  Maurices employees and reassigned 180 jobs, due to crashing brick-n-mortar store sales!  DICK’S Sporting Goods shutdown their Rochester store, on short notice, no reason given.  Dunham’s Discount Sports shutdown their Waite Park store with only two weeks notice, no reason given.

Missouri: Springfield based Bass Pro Shops suddenly laid off HQ employees, supposedly “less than 20″ due to ” the dramatically shifting retail landscape”.  In Saint Joseph, after 17 years Once Upon a Child hand-me-down clothing store shutting down in March.

New Hampshire: Still kickin’ but dying Radio Shack shutdown their store in Keene.  What’s left of the Radio Shack chain is now owned by Standard General LP.

New Jersey:  Ohio based Macy’s issued a shutdown WARN for its Moorestown store, 117 jobs gone by mid-March!  Zoo Printing laying off 65 people in West Deptford, by the end of March.  Public transportation contractor Transdev eliminating 64 jobs in Union, by the end of March.  The British empire based christian Salvation Army shutdown its Newark Family Thrift store due to crashing sales.  City administrators are worried as the thrift store helped fund local social programs.

New Mexico: In Albuquerque, Hey Johnny shutdown their brick-n-mortar store, the owner blamed the Albuquerque Rapid Transit project for literally driving away potential customers from the Nob Hill area.  In the same city, Shoes on a Shoestring shutting down its store on Coors NorthWest, as soon as inventory is sold.

New York:  Ohio based Macy’s issued multiple shutdown WARNS for stores in Douglaston, Johnson City, Clay and Rochester, more than 3-hundred jobs lost by mid April!  In Brooklyn-NYC, after 29 years the Sport Prospect store shutting down in February, so the owner can retire.  In NYC, GL Bus Lines eliminating 80 jobs by April. In Queensbury, the Aviation Mall hit by the shutdown of four tenants; Zumiez, a Hallmark, Ye Olde Gift Shoppe and a Harley-Davidson themed store.  Local news media reports that since December the mall lost ten stores! At Terminal 7, JFK Airport, Aviation Safeguards shutting down their baggage handling ops, 63 jobs lost by the end of March due to contract being canceled by evil British empire British Airways.  At LaGuardia Airport Delta-Flight Center, Terminal D, Gate Aviation Services shutting down due to loss of contract with Delta, 203 jobs lost by April!  Advertising company Gordon Sinclair getting the hell outta The Empire State, at least 81 production jobs moving to Pennsylvania by April.  The evil family Clinton Foundation killing more jobs, this time 22 Global Initiative people unemployed by mid April (they laid off 74 people right after Xmas 2016).  In Buffalo, Operations of Global Spectrum shutting down due to loss of contract with Spectra at Canalside, 194 jobs gone by the end of March!  In NYC, Bit’z Wits kids store shutting down its six years old location on Greenwich by March. Despite making custom clothing for First Lady Michelle Obama, snooty Bibhu Mohapatra now chapter 11 bankrupt busted.   After 30 years Pets NYC-Metro Pets shutdown, the owner Gene King bitched about a common problem saying “In a nutshell, the rent is not affordable”, as well as jacked up costs of pet supplies and local taxes.  In Brighton, after 20 years Cinemark Movies 10 shutdown, probably in connection to the 2016 takeover of Cinemark by AMC Theaters.  In New Hartford, after more than 30 years Tracy’s Hallmark store shutting down by the end of February, the owner blamed competition and the new minimum wage hike. After 34 years The Village Toy Shop shutdown, the owner blamed crashing sales.  Also in New Hartford, after 20 yeras Joette’s Gifts announced a shutdown by the end of Summer: “Most people do not support local business and there are too many copycats.”-Joette Swisher, owner

North Carolina: Mooresville based home improvment retailer Lowes eliminating 2-thousand 4-hundred full time jobs at stores and distribution centers across the United States! Administrators blame it on “dramatic shifts that are reshaping the retail landscape”. Family Dollar shutdown its store in Old Fort, saying it wasn’t worth it to renew the lease.  Wyndam Capital Mortgage suddenly laid off 74 HQ employees, blaming “changing market conditions.”  In Morganton, Vivian’s Sewing Shop shutdown after 24 years: “I’m 68 years old and I need to go ahead and retire so I can enjoy some time with my husband before we end up taking care of each other.”-Vivian Cantor

North Dakota: New York & Company shutdown its West Acres Mall women’s clothing store, no reason given.

Ohio: Stow Sports and Promotions shutting down its brick-n-mortar store to focus on internet sales only because “The model of having store hours and purchasing a half-million-dollars worth of merchandise and second guessing what customers want has changed.”  Camping retailer Gander Mountain shutting down its Sheffield Village in February.  Despite claiming to be “in a season of growth” Gander Mountain admin apparently decided not to compete with a Cabelas store that recently opened in the area. In West Chester, Sharon’s Hallmark shutdown, local news media indicated that no reason was made public. New Albany based Abercrombie and Fitch suddenly laid off 150 HQ employees due to “the current retail environment”!  Columbus based clothing retailer The Limited now chapter 11 bankrupt busted, 250 stores up for sale, about 4-thousand jobs lost! In Worthington, after almost 23 years Wren House Gifts shutting down in February. The owner blamed lack of customers who actually buy something, jacked-up operating costs and a new landlord.  Elder Beerman shutdown its Ohio Valley Mall department store, the space will now be chopped up into smaller retail ops. Ascena Retail Group shutdown its Ann Taylor clothing store in the Summit Mall.  Maumee based general store chain The Anderson’s gave up and suddenly shutdown all remaining stores, 1-thousand-50 jobs lost!  Macy’s shutting down 68 stores and increased its previously announced layoffs to 10-thousand-1-hundred: “We continue to experience declining traffic in our stores…..we are closing locations that are unproductive……due to changes in the local retail shopping landscape.”-Terry Lundgren, ceo

Oregon:  Ohio based Macy’s issued a shutdown WARN for its Portland store, 96 jobs gone by March. Connecticut based printing company Cenveo suddenly shutdown their Portland ops, 91 jobs lost.

Pennsylvania: California based clothing chain PacSun shutting down two stores, one in Tanger Outlets Hershey and one at Colonial Park Mall. California based Victoria’s Secret shutdown its Former Mall store. Ohio based  Bath & Body Works shutdown its Former Mall store.  Ohio based Macy’s issued multiple shutdown WARNS for stores in Bensalem and Monaca, 267 jobs gone starting in March!  In Doylestown, after almost 69 years Foster’s Toys & Party Center shutting down in February.  According to local news media, it was increased rent and increased competition that did them in.  Artfully Elegant shutdown its brick-n-mortar store to focus on internet sales only.

South Carolina: In Wellford, non-profit Hollywild Animal Park laid off the majority of paid staff and is now relying on unpaid volunteers.  Administrators blame lack of donations and warned that 5-hundred animals could be culled because they are not “releasable”.

Tennessee: Fred’s Discount Store shutting down a store in Johnson City, in March.

Texas: Dallas based fitness retailer Luke’s Locker now chapter 11 bankrupt busted. Stores across The Lone Star State were shutdown temporarily, for about one week.  Mormon Mitt Romney wunderkind Staples shutting down its store in Lubbock, as part of plans to give up on its brick-n-mortar ops and focus on the internet.  Lone Star National Bank shutting down a San Antonio office on San Pedro Avenue, supposedly due to lack of customers.

Virginia: California based clothing chain PacSun shutdown its Manassas Mall store, with less than a week’s notice.  In Fredericksburg, Sweet Caroline’s kids clothing store shutdown. Privately run nonprofit Colonial Williamsburg suddenly laid off 40 people due to lack of funding. I was there in the mid-1970s, made me feel patriotic and reminds you who the mortal enemy of the U.S. of A. is; the evil British empire!  Clothier J.Crew shutdown their Lynchburg Clearance Store, administrators admitted they were getting away from brick-n-mortar ops to focus on internet sales.

Washington:  Ohio based Macy’s issued a shutdown WARN for its Everett store, 135 jobs gone by March!

West Virginia: In Charleston, after 60 years Sneed’s Vacuum & Sewing Service shutdown, the family owners said “Someone made us an offer out of the blue, we….decided it was a good time to retire”  In Triadelphia, Michael’s crafts store shutting down by the end of February, administrators said it wasn’t worth renewing the lease.

Wisconsin: MC Sports shutting down its ten years old Plover store as soon  as inventory is gone.  Northwestern Mutual warning of mass layoffs, said to be in the “hundreds”, even though the Too Big to Jail bank is spending $450-million USD building a new corporate HQ!  In Greendale, after only three years Ascena Retail Group shutdown its women’s clothing store Loft, at the Southridge Mall location.  In Portage, local government jerks shutdown and stole the property of 33 years old Gruber Automotive auto shop, using ’eminent domain’ as the excuse!

Wyoming: Outdoor clothing chain Sierra Trading Post laid off 40 employees at its Cheyenne ‘fulfillment center’ due to “restructuring”.

Retail/Banking/Service sector December 2016: “I AM FIGHTING….AN UNWINNABLE FIGHT.”

JCPENNEY HIT-LIST REVEALED, 5-THOUSAND JOBS GONE BY JUNE 2017!

OBAMA LEGACY: U.S. APPAREL INDUSTRY DEATH-SPIRAL BEGAN UNDER BARACK’S WATCH

ObamaCare (ACA) Death Spiral, January 2017: “A STREAMLINING OF OPERATIONS.”

Dumbing Down the U.S.A., January 2017: “I’M SCARED….FOR A BAD REASON!”

U.S. Food Crisis, January 2017: “IT’S GETTING TOUGH OUT THERE.”

U.S. Hi-Tech/Communications breakdown, January 2017: “I FEEL LIKE WE ARE BEING BLED.” “AND IT’S GETTING WORSE.”

WARN=Worker Adjustment & Retraining Notification.

I found a 2010 AFL-CIO analysis (titled The Public Availability of WARN Notices: Lack of Accessibility and Disclosure…) which proves what I’ve been suspecting in my search of state WARN notices; most states are not complying with federal WARN regulations and are not publicizing or tracking mass layoffs.

Former employees who receive severance are not counted as unemployed!

Employees of religious non-profits might not qualify for unemployment assistance: “If the non-profit organization is a church, you may or may not be entitled to unemployment. It all depends upon state regulations for church employers. In many cases, churches are allowed to set their own rules regarding unemployment benefits, meaning the church can choose whether to offer benefits to former employees.”

The U.S. Department of Labor (DoL) no longer issues mass layoff reports: “On March 1, 2013, President Obama ordered into effect the across-the- board spending cuts (commonly referred to as sequestration) required by the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act, as amended. Under the order, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) must cut its current budget by more than $30 million, 5 percent of the current 2013 appropriation, by September 30, 2013. In order to help achieve these savings and protect core programs, the BLS will eliminate two programs, including Mass Layoff Statistics, and all ‘measuring green jobs’ products. This news release is the final publication of monthly mass layoff survey data.”

More proof instructions are wrong: AMT Willys Van retro issue

Click (or tap) pics to make bigger:

REVELL 1937 FORD PICKUP OR WHY MODEL ASSEMBLY INSTRUCTIONS CAN BE WRONG!

MULTI-MAVERICK OR WHY MODEL ASSEMBLY INSTRUCTIONS CAN BE WRONG!

RAF A400M steals USAF personnel

The United Kingdom, the mortal enemy of the United States, tried to show goodwill by taking USAF personnel on a goodwill flight with their new European made A400M Atlas.  It took place at Scott AFB, Illinois.

Vehicle ID: New HH-60M Black Hawk for Hawaiian militia MEDEVAC

National Guard MEDEVAC, Detachment 1, Company G, 1st Battalion, 189th Aviation Regiment, Kalaeloa, Hawaii, offloads new HH-60M Black Hawks from C-17 Globemaster-3.   The HH-60M have an external hoist, a Forward Looking Infrared Radar (FLIR) and the capability to carry six patients:

VEHICLE ID: UH-60 BLACK HAWK M240 LIVE FIRE, GRAFENWOEHR

BRAND NEW UH-60M: CANUCKS JOIN SNAKE RIVER MILITIA, AIR ASSAULT MOVE TO CONTACT, ROMANIA!

BLACK HAWK DOWN JAPAN: U.S. ARMY TRAINS YOKOHAMA TO RESCUE DOWNED UH-60 CREWS

OBAMA DISAPPEARS THE LAST OF IDAHO’S APACHES!

PAKISTAN TO GIVE CHINA DOWNED U.S. STEALTH BLACKHAWK

Vehicle ID: KC-130J refuels MV-22B in flight, cool vid!

USMC tilt rotor MV-22B Osprey being refueled by KC-130J Super Hercules over Yuma, Arizona, 20 October 2016:

“DESTINATION BAGHDAD”, C-130J SUPPLY RUN TO IRAQ

Vehicle ID: Ohio Air Militia C-130H Hercules

Ten minutes of Ohio National Guard’s 179th Airlift Wing C-130H transports, in action and at rest:

40 seconds of Ohio C-130H buzzing a football game:

RUSSIA DELIVERS C-130 SIMULATOR TO U.S. MARINES IN JAPAN!

C-130 MAFFS : WILDFIRE SEASON 2018 GOING TO BE A HOT ONE!

45 YEARS OF C-130 MAFFS OPS. WHO WOULD’VE KNOWN WILDFIRES WOULD BECOME SUCH A PROBLEM?