Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Review of Tescopoly by Andrew Simms

At first look the book Tescopoly may seem like a book of slander against tesco but having read it, it is much more. The book details the rise of the supermarket industry in particular tesco but it goes further than that. It analyses how the rise in the supermarket industry and the retail giants has destroyed the local economies across the country, how they also are destroying society as a result.
Simms often refers to local economies as ecosystems, saying that when their are lots of small shops there is lots of diversity and thus ideas flourish. With many shops comes competition but also other advantages to the consumer such as human connection and "social glue". He states supermarkets as invasive that destroy the economy and wipe out the local diversity.
He details the anti-competivie practises of tesco and other supermarkets arguing that actually they use their monopoly status and 'tricks' to get to the top and ruin the consumer. Talking about how by 'freeing' the markets of restriction you actually destroy the 'free market'. While the book is persuasive and heavily rooted in Simms opinions, he uses a wide range of data and arguments to back up his points. Simms brings in quotes and theories from various economist, placing economists like Maynard Keynes and Adam Smith on his side. He uses lots of facts and data from various sources to prove his point, even when quoting politicians he ensures he quotes a Labour MP then next page a Conservative and before long a Lib Dem and so on.
By the end of the book i found my self totally won over by Simms, having a strange urge to run into Tesco shouting "what have you done to those farmers (african and british) and josephine the now ex shopkeeper!!!"
I certainly recommend this book, it is easy to read for economists and none economists, its interesting can be easily dipped in and out of but also ties together like a story. It contains lots of Macro Economics that will serve well in exams.
I'd say GCSE + A Level Friendly

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