Holding Sale Tag

In a centrally planned economy, all outcomes are the same and consumer demand is meaningless. You want two-ply toilet paper? Sorry, this month we only produced one-ply. Even though the principles of capitalism are obvious, even capitalists are tempted to join the communists and proclaim their belief in equality of outcomes.

Last year, Old Navy clothing company made a bold announcement: all the same products at all the same price — regardless of size. It has been a disaster. Under the banner of "inclusivity", Old Navy removed their petites and plus-size departments, and then offered every pattern in all sizes from XS to 4X. Clothing cannot be easily sized up or sized down and still look attractive. Old Navy sold out its middle sizes, but since they made each and every size for all their stores to display, they were left with quantities of tiny and large clothing — which were comically offered at all the same price. The demands of Equity do not allow for fashion. Under communism, you must wear what the factory produces.

The Equity in pricing means that an XS dress with a small amount of fabric subsidises the 4X dress with a much larger amount of fabric and labor. Instead of taxing the rich to give to the poor, Old Navy is taxing the skinny to give a bargain to the extra-large customers. As fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg said, "If you are a size 2 and if you are a size 16, you do not use the same amount of fabric. You also don't want to penalize the small people [who would be] paying more because the price has to be the same. It may be very controversial to bring that up. But I think it's important."

No one is happy and consumers are not buying Equity in clothing. Plus-size and petite customers do not enjoy shopping the same racks together; it is no fun to wade through piles of clothing in trying to find your size.

Many corporations have been pressured by activists to proclaim a progressive agenda, but talk hurts when sales slump. Capitalism caters to customer demand; communism erases individual choice. Old Navy has a very large clearance rack because they tried a small experiment in Equity. Caveat emptor.

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