December 28, 2003

Annals of Commerce

Trader Joe's country-style tomato soup, sold at Trader Joe's, Lafayette, California, is a product of Lichtenstein.

That is all.

Posted by DeLong at December 28, 2003 02:10 PM | TrackBack

Comments

I'll have to run down to the Culver City Trader Joe's and see if they have this soup - before the import competing sector calls Karl Rove for trade protection. Actually, LA area Trader Joe's are quite crowded given our grocery store strike / lockout now in its 3rd month.

Posted by: Harold McClure on December 28, 2003 02:41 PM

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Sounds like antique American furniture made in China.

Posted by: Bulent Sayin on December 28, 2003 02:44 PM

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Let's see...Lafayette, CA 94549 has some interesting demographics, if you check it here:

http://www.cluster1.claritas.com/MyBestSegments/Default.jsp

Claritas numbers its segments from 01 to 62 (I think) running from highest socio-economic class to the lowest.
The top 5 market segments in Lafayette are "Upper Crust", "Blue Blood Estates", "Movers and Shakers", "Executive Suites", and "Big Fish, Small Pond". (Numbers 01, 02, 03, 08, and 09).

Given that data, we have the following:n

Lafayette:Lichtenstein::Most Suburbs: Sri Lanka

So the fact that your soup comes from there makes sense. :-)

That is all.

Posted by: Jonathan King on December 28, 2003 02:44 PM

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'That is all.'

Oh Bull, Lichtenstein also produces some really tasty bread sticks.

Posted by: Bryan on December 28, 2003 02:54 PM

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'That is all.'

Oh Bull, Lichtenstein also produces some really tasty bread sticks.

Posted by: Bryan on December 28, 2003 02:55 PM

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'That is all.'

Oh Bull, Lichtenstein also produces some really tasty bread sticks.

Posted by: Bryan on December 28, 2003 02:55 PM

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I produce triple posts though.

Posted by: bryan on December 28, 2003 02:56 PM

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It may be relevant that Trader Joe's is owned by ALDI Einkauf GmbH, a German food conglomerate which is largely owned by billionaires Theo and Karl Albrecht. Aldi's general strategy is to use its limited selection to negotiate better prices with its wholesale supplier, which is consistent with what you see at Trader Joe's.

Posted by: alkali on December 28, 2003 03:27 PM

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Talk about "glublization", eh?

Posted by: Bulent Sayin on December 28, 2003 03:38 PM

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I hope it is not saturated with corn syrup like the last can of soup I bought at Trader's Joe.

Posted by: amusedfrog on December 28, 2003 03:45 PM

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Actually, Liechtenstien grows a fair amount of (white) asparagus, much prized as a seasonal treat in its region. That's down in the Rhine valley -- the rest of the country is too steep for much more than the typical touristic Alpine herding...

Posted by: PQuincy on December 28, 2003 06:21 PM

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Doesn't Liechtenstein make a lot of false teeth too?

Posted by: Chris on December 28, 2003 06:55 PM

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In fact, Liechtenstein is Europe's Delaware. All it produces is bogus trust funds and foundations represented by law firms who rent their adress to whoever is thinking about tax evasion (legal tax evasion like LiLo transactions, or less legal evasion just by making profits disappear), money laundering and the like. Possibly they also have some asparagus, bur nobody ever heard of them producing soups or anything else that comes even near to being tangible (or eatable, for that matter).

Posted by: Gerhard on December 29, 2003 02:09 AM

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And in case you want to know more about Liechtenstein:

L. ist rumoured to be a constitutional monarchy, ruled by a hereditary prince (who actually appears to be vaguely Austrian, some minor descendant of the Habsburgs). Just last year, in a minor coup d'etat, he got a new Constitution passed which makes Parliament (which they do have) more or less a shambles. Anyway, the Prince knows what is good for the country, so why bother with a parliament.

The Capital of L. is Vaduz, which has about 5000 inhabitants and about a million registered corporations, trust funds, foundations etc.

L. uses the Swiss Franc as currency and is, economically, part of the Swiss Confederation. It is also, however, part of the European Economic Area, that is, in a wider sense (i.e. economically, not politically)associated with the European Union.

So a Liechtenstein lawyer is not an Alien in Switzerland, and not a third-country-citizen in the European Union.

Which is more than alchimists ever achieved.

Which is why their per capita GNP tends to be rather enormous, compared to their poorer neighbours such as Germany or Austria.

So you better stay clear of Liechtenstein soup cans sold in California. What you get is probably Saddam Husseins stolen billions, or Mafia money nicely laundered in Vaduz.

Posted by: Gerhard on December 29, 2003 02:22 AM

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So? Country-style soup -- they didn't say *which* country.

Posted by: Merkin on December 29, 2003 03:40 AM

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And the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, A&P, is German.

Posted by: David Lloyd-Jones on December 29, 2003 06:44 AM

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I was going to say what Gerhard said. You get the feeling reading about Leichtenstein that Peter Lorre and Sidney Greenstreet sightings are their version of Elvis sightings.

Posted by: Zizka on December 29, 2003 08:28 AM

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Liechtenstein _used_ to be a constitutional monarchy, but Prince Hans Adam recently got the mini-parliament to pass a bill giving him more or less unlimited veto and legislative powers (if I heard the details aright). This means that the principality is now in effect an absolute monarchy. Hans Adam -- a big supporter of Opus Dei and other ultra-right ultra-conservative Catholic causes, got the parliament to (reluctantly) knuckle by threatening to decamp for Vienna, where his family still holds a lot of palaces and things, newspapers reported. Since much of the principality's taxable income comes from tourists coming to visit the princely art collections and castles (I guess all those mailbox companies don't pay any taxes!), the parliament was in a bind.

Incidentally, Liechtenstein is now also an archbishopric (if a very very small one). The former Bishop of the diocese it formerly belonged to, the diocese of Chur, was not working out. He had been installed by John Paul II by fiat against the energetic resistance of the local congregations, and turned out to be so divisive that it was hurting the church -- and driving local Catholics not towards his own conservative views, but towards the opposite. But simply firing him would entail a huge loss of face, so instead he was "promoted" from the diocese of Chur to the newly created archdiocese of Liechtenstein!

Posted by: PQuincy on December 29, 2003 09:38 AM

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I've been told that there remains a Roman Catholic bishop for Greenland, though there no longer are Catholics there. The bishopric was founded sometime not too long after 1000 A.D. My understanding is that this post is used to put people in who are hard to place.

Posted by: Zizka on December 29, 2003 12:30 PM

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There is also a see like that in Algeria, in an area which is not only now muslim but has also been taken over by the desert.

Posted by: P.M.Lawrence on December 29, 2003 04:55 PM

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In partibus infidelium.

DSW

Posted by: Antoni Jaume on December 29, 2003 05:19 PM

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Hey, talking about bishoprics, Greenland and Algeria:

While the former archbishop of Chur was promoted to a see in Liechtensteins (to keep him from driving the Swiss Catholigs to become Protestants), where he will happily live ever after together with Prince Hans Adam and the Opus Dei, the Roman Catholic Church does have quite a lot of "extinct" bishoprics, and puts them to various uses: Some Princes of the Church (cardinals) are made arch-bishops and given an "extinct" see, so they are bishops without having to bother with real-life believers and ordinary church-goers. Other bishops who are removed from their bishoprics for political reasons (and remember, you can't fire or "downgrade" a bishop, you can only transfer him) are given such an "extinct" see just to get them out of the Pope`s hair. This is what happened to a French bishop who had too many sympathies for the theology of liberation, for the homeless, for refugees and other left-wing issues and was promptly removed to a "see" somewhere in Africa that nobody had ever heard of before; now it has become an internet bishopric visited by many "concerned" Catholics.

Anyway, the Pope being such a reactionary nuisance, how come George W. is still a re-born Protestant instead of converting to Catholicism? Maybe the Pope could make him arch-bishop of Guantanamo, and put him in charge of the souls of the "PoW"s of the War Against Terrorism?

Posted by: Gerhard on December 31, 2003 01:06 AM

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