Male Models Put Sexual Harassers in the Fashion Industry on Blast

That sexual misconduct/harassment thing – it’s getting around.

Seriously, are we now a nation of lustful, barely-in-control beasts?

It kinda seems that way.

Then again, it might be job-related, in many cases.

What about models? Not just models, but male models.

Have you seen those Abercrombie & Fitch posters? They’re all in black-and-white, and some of those male models look a little… uncomfortable.

There might be a reason for all that.

The latest story of inappropriate skeezing involves male models, former and current, who are sounding off about several prominent photographers for big name companies doing a little more than say, “OK… Show me ‘pensive’ “ and snapping shots.

From the New York Times:

Fifteen current and former male models who worked with Bruce Weber, whose racy advertisements for companies like Calvin Klein and Abercrombie & Fitch helped turn him into one of the foremost commercial and fine art photographers, have described to The New York Times a pattern of what they said was unnecessary nudity and coercive sexual behavior, often during photo shoots.

The men recalled, with remarkable consistency, private sessions with Mr. Weber in which he asked them to undress and led them through breathing and “energy” exercises. Models were asked to breathe and to touch both themselves and Mr. Weber, moving their hands wherever they felt their “energy.” Often, Mr. Weber guided their hands with his own.

And they fell for that crap?

“I remember him putting his fingers in my mouth, and him grabbing my privates,” said the model Robyn Sinclair. “We never had sex or anything, but a lot of things happened. A lot of touching. A lot of molestation.”

It wasn’t just Weber.

In accounts going back to the mid-1990s, 13 male assistants and models who have worked with the photographer Mario Testino, a favorite of the English royal family and Vogue, told The Times that he subjected them to sexual advances that in some cases included groping and masturbation.

At least he’s being more forward.

Of course, lawyers for the accused are denying the allegations and are attacking the credibility of the accusers. That’s how it works.

Some who have worked with the men in the past are even acting shocked that such accusations are making the rounds, themselves never having experienced anything so unacceptable.

For those who are making the accusations, however, they say they were left with few choices, and that’s a common theme: either acquiesce, or risk losing lucrative work, or even their entire careers.

Apparently, in modeling, young male models are the least respected, easily replaced, so the stakes are higher, if a serious career in modeling is what they want.

“It was general practice to give a model a heads-up about a specific photographer who we knew had a certain reputation,” said Gene Kogan of his time working as an agent at Next Management between 1996 and 2002.

But, he said, “If you said you were not going to work with someone like Bruce Weber or Mario Testino, you might as well just pack it in and go work in another industry.”

And the stories are disturbing.

They’re also familiar.

Meetings in hotel rooms, and concerns about nude “auditions.”

Testino’s career includes shooting the first baby photos of Madonna’s daughter for Vanity Fair, or the engagement photos for Prince William and Kate Middleton.

He’s obviously a powerful name in the industry.

Two models have also complained about his behavior in the course of photographing Gucci campaigns in the ’90s.

“If you wanted to work with Mario, you needed to do a nude shoot at the Chateau Marmont,” said Jason Fedele, who appeared in those campaigns. “All the agents knew that this was the thing to excel or advance your career.”

The nude work bothered him less than what he believed were sexual come-ons. It was as if Mr. Testino were gauging which “moves” might work, Mr. Fedele said — “whether it was a comment or a reach for the towel, and he definitely reached.”

It wasn’t just the models. Even the assistants hired – often young, heterosexual men – were subjected to abusive behavior.

“Sexual harassment was a constant reality,” said Roman Barrett, an assistant to Mr. Testino in the late ’90s who said the photographer rubbed up against his leg with an erection and masturbated in front of him.

“He misbehaved in hotel rooms, the backs of cars and on first-class flights,” he said. “Then things would go back to normal, and that made you feel gaslighted.”

Another assistant to Mr. Testino, a decade later, said he had his pants pulled down and buttocks fondled while on the job. Yet another said that Mr. Testino masturbated on him during a business trip. Both were granted anonymity because they feared career repercussions.

Testino’s legal team say these accusers are “disgruntled.”

I wonder why?

“I was pushed around, overworked, underpaid and sexually harassed daily,” Mr. Barrett said. “That’s why I was disgruntled.”

Well, there you go.

The industry is apparently set up to groom young, impressionable models to accept that their bodies, their faces, are commodities, and they have no protections.

“Models are not educated about what is or is not acceptable behavior, and often don’t even have the vocabulary to express their experiences,” said Edward Siddons, a model turned journalist.

“Male models are paid much less and they do not become icons, because the culture is about objectifying women to sell things, and people are deeply uncomfortable with that happening to men,” Mr. Ford said.

“I knew that if people didn’t want to have sex with you and people didn’t find you beautiful, you weren’t much inspiration,” Taber said. “The models that got jobs are the ones stylists and photographers are into. I also wanted people to like me, especially the most powerful people in the business. I would almost get offended if they didn’t want to have sex with me. That’s how I got groomed. That’s how it worked in my mind.”

That’s really sad.

And unacceptable.

It’s just one more cog in this machine of debauchery that is operating in different corners of media and culture.

Will coming forward stop it?

Who knows, but maybe we can at least slow it down.

 

 

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The First Saturday Night Live Cold Open of 2018 Does Not Disappoint

With the events of the past week or two, we can assume the writers with Saturday Night Live were drunk from the cornucopia of material to work with.

As expected, Saturday night’s cold open covered everything from Michael Wolff’s book, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” to the flameout of former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon.

OH… and Oprah.

The first cold open of 2018 lampooning MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” with some uncomfortable sexual tension between “Mika” and “Joe.”

Enter the always funny Fred Armisen as Michael Wolff.

Is the book based in truth, or not?

Well…

“There were baby races. Trump would ask to have two babies placed in his office, usually of different races. Someone would put a bowl of Goldfish crackers at the other side of the room. Trump would say, ‘A thousand bucks on the black one,’” he said.

Asked by the “Morning Joe” hosts if his story is truthful, Armisen’s Wolff responds: “You read it, right? And you liked it? You had fun? What’s the problem. You got the gist, so shut up. Even the stuff that’s not true was true.”

One of the wonderful things about Armisen’s comedy is his timing and the depth of comedy that can be conveyed just through his facial expressions.

Watch this portion of the skit and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

The surprise entry was Steve Bannon, as played by Bill Murray.

“I never said Don Jr., was treasonous, and I certainly never said he’d crack like an egg on TV,” Murray’s Bannon chastised Armisen’s Wolff, before admitting, “Ok, that does sound like me, thank you, good reporting.”

Murray’s Bannon also shares his future plans now that he’s left Breitbart, which include a new show for Crackle called “Cucks in Cars Getting Coffee,” creating “wrinkled barn jackets called Frumpers for guys,” and a future skin care line called “Blotch.”

And as Kate McKinnon’s Mika Brzezinski lamented that we were doomed as a nation and no one was coming to save us – here comes OPRAH (SNL’s Leslie Jones).

Not nearly as funny as it could have been, but still, they jammed a lot into the segment, with Armisen being the absolute, laugh-out-loud jewel.

Check it out.

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New Book: Trump Once Sought Project Veritas’ Undercover Help

James O’Keefe, founder of Project Veritas has a new book, “American Pravda: My Fight for Truth in the Era of Fake News.”

We’ll put aside the recent Washington Post embarrassment, along with the other flubs, missteps, and legal troubles that have arisen from the organization’s methods and pretend the title isn’t rather ironic.

Project Veritas came to prominence through undercover stings, aimed at capturing evidence of corruption in government, media, or other areas of public interest.

They’ve had a few hits (most notably, the ACORN sting in 2009). That early success helped launch Andrew Breitbart’s Big Government website, and O’Keefe’s videos were prominently featured on Breitbart News.

That drive to maintain the same level of media attention has led to accusations of deceptive editing, as well as a few lawsuits.

Currently, Project Veritas is being sued for activities aimed at Trump protesters in the 2016 election.

With that in mind, O’Keefe’s organization does have one fan (even though he doesn’t seem to understand what it is PV does) – President Trump.

In the new book, O’Keefe tells of a 2013 encounter with Trump, where he was asked to go after President Obama’s sealed college records.

“He was confident Obama was born in the United States, but he suspected Obama had presented himself as a foreign student on application materials to ease his way into New York’s Columbia University, maybe even Harvard too, and perhaps picked up a few scholarships along the way,” O’Keefe explains. “Trump had reason to believe Obama was capable of this kind of mischief.”

I suspect Obama is capable of all kinds of trickery, but still…

It was Trump’s desire to find some smoking gun to place in Obama’s hands. He wanted something to hold over his head, proving him to be a fraud.

“Nobody else can get this information,” Trump reportedly told O’Keefe. “Do you think you could get inside Columbia?”

“As I explained, that was not exactly our line of work. We were journalists, not private eyes,” O’Keefe writes about the request. “At the end of our discussion, Trump shook my hand, encouraged me to keep up the good work, and half-whispered, ‘Do Columbia.’”

It didn’t quite sink in, did it?

Yeah. A lot of people seem to have that problem explaining things to Trump.

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Trump to Friends After “Sh*thole” Comment: Wha? What Did I Say?

Because of course he’s defending this.

As our nation’s diplomats are in panic mode, rushing about to try and smooth over the ruffled feathers of those nation’s Trump insulted with his “Sh*thole” comment, the greater damage may only be realized in days ahead.

The world is already on edge, given Trump’s penchant for saying all the wrong things at all the wrong times. They don’t know if he can be counted on, or not.

Now he insults a great many of our allies.

As Erick Erickson pointed out last night, Haiti was one of the nations that sided with the U.S., when the United Nations voted to condemn the announcement of moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Norway – the place Trump wants to see more immigrants from – voted against us.

Just some perspective.

Earlier today, our ambassadors to Botswana and Senegal, along with the top U.S. diplomat in Haiti, were all called to explain to their hosts what Trump meant and why he would say such a hostile thing.

The Trump White House was in damage control mode, taking to TV interviews to explain how this was all 47th upside-down, backwards chess.

According to the Associated Press:

Undersecretary of State Steve Goldstein, in charge of U.S. public diplomacy, said Trump has the right to “make whatever remark he chooses,” calling it the benefit of being president. He said Trump’s comments notwithstanding, it was diplomats’ obligation to send the message to other countries that the United States cares “greatly about the people that are there.”

I think they probably missed that message.

“Will they have to work extra hard to send it today? Yes, they will, but that’s OK,” Goldstein said. “That’s part of the responsibility that they have. It doesn’t change what we do.”

I don’t think any of them expect to work this hard.

Meanwhile, rather than really taking into consideration why people might be deeply offended by all this, the president is trying to gauge the public outrage and explain himself to associates and friends, in private.

As his comments, disclosed by participants in the meeting, ricocheted around the world, Trump made calls to friends and outside advisers to judge their reaction to the tempest, said a person who spoke to Trump but wasn’t authorized to discuss a private conversation.

He wasn’t apologetic, the person said. Instead, Trump blamed the media for distorting his meaning, arguing his description of “shithole” was not racist but rather a straightforward assessment of some nations’ depressed conditions. Trump also said he believed he was expressing what many people think, according to the person.

Yes. How dare the media distort the meaning of what he said by reporting it.

And we’ve heard the argument that he was talking about the depressed condition of those nations. Nobody is denying that part. And as we’ve seen from his hateful supporters, he was expressing what many think. The world is full of awful people.

What he apparently has missed is that when you use that term while talking about human beings, you give the impression that your belief is sh*thole countries produce sh*thole people.

It’s offensive, and he has no idea why, which is probably the worst part.

Ambassador James Jeffrey, the former U.S. envoy to Turkey and Iraq under Bush, said the ramifications of Trump’s remarks extended far beyond the countries he insulted. He said the “shithole” comment, in particular, would rattle European nations who fear a return to the xenophobic world view that devastated the continent during World War II.

“Where this is going to hurt us is with the Europeans when we turn to them for other things that require a you-just-have-to-trust-us kind of thing, like right now on Iran,” Jeffrey said. “It makes it very hard for them to go out on a limb with things he’s asking them to do.”

And many nations that voted to condemn us with the U.N. now feel quite justified in their vote.

Trump could do his image so much good if he would come forward to explain those remarks.

If he said the remarks were made in frustration and came out wrong, apologized, said he’d practice more self-control and sensitivity in the future, he probably wouldn’t win over everybody, but it would definitely be better than leaving things as they are, now.

 

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Trump Lawyer Paid Porn Star “Hush” Money to Not Join Parade of Trump Accusers – Report

So how many reports are necessary before we’re allowed to believe that it’s not plausible to think everyone else in the world is a liar and only Trump tells the truth?

Let’s set aside the “Sh*thole” maelstrom for a bit, and go back to an old standard: Trump as creepy adulterer.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that whatever arrangement is going on between the president and Melania Trump, it sure isn’t devoted, marital love.

At least, not the kind that would keep Trump from diving into bed with a porn star after only a year of marriage to Melania.

Allegedly.

The WSJ story notes that Trump’s personal lawyer paid $130,000 in hush money to the woman, in order to keep her from joining the parade of women coming out with stories of encounters with then-candidate Trump.

Michael Cohen, who spent nearly a decade as a top attorney at the Trump Organization, arranged payment to the woman, Stephanie Clifford, in October 2016 after her lawyer negotiated the nondisclosure agreement with Mr. Cohen, these people said.

Ms. Clifford, whose stage name is Stormy Daniels, has privately alleged the encounter with Mr. Trump took place after they met at a July 2006 celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe, these people said. Mr. Trump married Melania Trump in 2005.

In October 2016, the 2005 “Access Hollywood” recording was released, with Trump describing how his wealth and celebrity allowed him to grab women “by the p***y.”

The release of that recording prompted over a dozen women to come forward with their own accounts of Trump behaving badly.

The majority of those stories dealt with nonconsensual encounters, while the encounter with Trump and Clifford was consensual.

“These are old, recycled reports, which were published and strongly denied prior to the election,” a White House official said, responding to the allegation of a sexual encounter involving Mr. Trump and Ms. Clifford. The official declined to respond to questions about an agreement with Ms. Clifford. It isn’t known whether Mr. Trump was aware of any agreement or payment involving her.

In a statement, Mr. Cohen didn’t address the $130,000 payment but said of the alleged sexual encounter that “President Trump once again vehemently denies any such occurrence as has Ms. Daniels.”

Mr. Cohen added in the statement, addressed to The Wall Street Journal: “This is now the second time that you are raising outlandish allegations against my client. You have attempted to perpetuate this false narrative for over a year; a narrative that has been consistently denied by all parties since at least 2011.”

But you allegedly wrote the check in 2016, dude, and it was a nondisclosure agreement, so of course, she couldn’t say anything about it.

Mr. Cohen also sent a two-paragraph statement by email addressed “TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN” and signed by “Stormy Daniels” denying that she had a “sexual and/or romantic affair” with Mr. Trump.

“Rumors that I have received hush money from Donald Trump are completely false,” the statement said.

OH – that’s convenient.

I’m picturing Cohen shoving a statement into Clifford’s face and telling her to sign.

Interesting that she signed her stage name and not her legal name.

The Journal previously reported that Ms. Clifford, 38 years old, had been in talks with ABC’s “Good Morning America” in the fall of 2016 about an appearance to discuss Mr. Trump, according to people familiar with the matter. In that article, the Journal reported the company that owns the National Enquirer agreed to pay $150,000 to a former Playboy centerfold model three months before the election for her story of an affair a decade earlier with the Republican presidential nominee, which the tabloid newspaper didn’t publish. The company said she was paid to write fitness columns and appear on magazine covers.

You mean another one, besides the porn star?

Clifford and her people were apparently about to cancel the deal, because the promised money wasn’t coming fast enough.

She apparently thought about all of those creditors that were stiffed by Trump and left empty handed and broken.

She received her payment through her then-attorney, Keith Davidson, who placed the funds in a client-trust account.

Ms. Clifford has appeared in about 150 adult films, and was considered among the industry’s biggest stars when the then-27-year-old met Mr. Trump at the American Century Championship in 2006, held at Edgewood Tahoe golf course in Nevada.

And everybody is denying this now, but it really is just too much.

Our president is a thoroughly repulsive man.

 

 

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Rep. Mia Love Demands an Apology From President Trump, and We’re ALL Owed One

Utah Congresswoman Mia Love is the child of Haitian immigrants.

Imagine that.

I don’t think she jumped the Trump train fully, in 2016, but I think she was loyal to her party.

That being said, was she conflicted in her feelings about President Trump’s profane, hateful statement during an immigration meeting on Thursday?

To refresh your memories (as if anybody is forgetting), Trump referred to African nations and Haiti as “sh*thole countries,” and further suggested we should be taking more immigrants from Norway.

Seriously, this wasn’t just racist and vile. It was such an epic level of idiocy, the only proper reaction should be an immediate psych evaluation.

He’s having his first physical tomorrow. They’ve said no mental evaluation is expected, but they should do a neurological exam, definitely.

But back to Rep. Love.

Is she conflicted?

Not in the slightest.

Her statement was the perfect, reasoned response to something that stoops to the level of ignorance displayed by our president.

Said Love:

The President'[s] comments are unkind, divisive, elitist, and fly in the face of our nation’s values. This behavior is unacceptable from the leader of our nation. My parents came from one of those countries, took an oath of allegiance to it, and took on the responsibilities of everything that being a citizen comes with. They never took a thing from our federal government. They worked hard, paid taxes, and rose from nothing to take care of and provide opportunities for their children. They taught their children to do the same. That’s the American Dream. The President must apologize to both the American people and the nations he so wantonly maligned.

Yes, he should, but this is a man who has never asked forgiveness. If anything, expect him to double down in a frothing tweet storm in the morning.

This incident is reminiscent of the federal lawsuit brought against Trump in the 70s for housing discrimination.

At that time, an undercover operation found Trump was denying Hispanics and African Americans with the same qualifications as their white counterparts from renting apartments in Trump properties.

During a break in the proceedings, Trump approached the Justice Department attorney working the case and said to her, “C’mon, admit it. You don’t want to live with them, either.”

He’s a despicable man, and for those who think he’s changed since the 70s, he has not.

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CNN Analyst BLASTS Trump: “I AM A PROUD SH*THOLER!” (VIDEO)

Counterterrorism analyst and CNN contributor Phil Mudd was not happy about the president’s remarks, where he referred to African nations and Haiti as “sh*thole countries.”

Nobody should be happy about that, although I know the red cappers are probably thrilled.

Trump made the comment earlier today during an immigration meeting, asking why we were taking in immigrants from what he considers to be “sh*thole countries,” and asking why we weren’t taking in more people from places like Norway.

I actually don’t think there’s a big rush of Norwegian immigrants, right now, but ok.

Back to Mudd, however.

So incensed was he, that he launched into a tirade, condemning the president’s callous words today, and began that tirade by saying, “I’m a proud sh*tholer!”

I promise you, that’s the first time that has ever been said on CNN.

He had a good point, however. He went on to name the home countries of immigrants from decades ago, who were considered to be from “sh*thole countries” at the time, but who have since gone on to prove to be valuable members of our society.

The White House is not denying the president made that vile reference. They’re writing it off as Trump’s “frustration” with the immigration process.

Frustrated or not, there’s no excusing using that kind of terminology about entire nations of people.

Yes. Some nations are broken and impoverished, but when you use such callous and vulgar terms to describe those nations, you also label the quality of people from those nations, and it’s not fair.

Mudd’s rant was completely warranted.

By contrast, who wants to gamble that Sean Hannity will have a chart tonight, featuring every insensitive slur from every liberal politician for the last 30 years, and will somehow link them all to Hillary Clinton?

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The President Has Identified an Act of Treason and He Wants ACTION NOW!

OH, good grief.

Ok. First things first. What is treason?

According to Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute website:

 Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 807Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(2)(J), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2148.)

Further, I’ve read that it includes furnishing the enemy with arms, troops, shelter, or information. This applies only as it weakens the nation during a time of war.

So what’s not treason?

Texting insults about the president to your girlfriend.

Now, please, somebody inform President Trump.

The stable genius is huffing and puffing because he thinks the FBI agent who shared anti-Trump text messages with a mistress, Peter Strzok, is guilty of treason.

Mr. Trump told the Wall Street Journal that Peter Strzok, an FBI agent who was a top investigator on the special counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating whether Russia colluded with the Trump campaign to influence the 2016 presidential election, committed treason with his text suggesting an “insurance policy” against a Trump victory.

“A man is tweeting to his lover that if [Democrat Hillary Clinton ] loses, we’ll essentially do the insurance policy. We’ll go to phase two and we’ll get this guy out of office,” said Mr. Trump. “This is the FBI we’re talking about—that is treason. That is a treasonous act. What he tweeted to his lover is a treasonous act.”

You’re not a king, dipwad.

OOPS. Is that treason?

To be clear, nowhere in the texts sent between Strzok and his mistress, FBI attorney Lisa Page, was anything said about “do the insurance policy” or about “phase two.”

What was said:

“I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration…that there’s no way he gets elected—but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk. It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.”

That is believed to be a reference to the investigation into collusion with Russia.

And it’s still not treason.

Aitan Goelman, an attorney for Mr. Strzok, told the Journal: “It is beyond reckless for the president of the United States to accuse Pete Strzok, a man who has devoted his entire adult life to defending this country, of treason. It should surprise no one that the president has both the facts and the law wrong.”

Facts, law – not really the concern of geniuses.

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Trump Friends on Trump Speaking to Robert Mueller: DON’T DO IT, MAN!!

Because they know he will ultimately say something that will screw him up, SO bad.

President Trump, who has suggested that he would sit and be questioned by special counsel Robert Mueller in the Russia probe – only to back off later and say it was unlikely – is being advised by those around him to NOT to risk it.

 Trump team lawyers, White House insiders and friends are among those who have reportedly told Trump it would be unwise to talk to the special counsel, arguing that doing so could land the president in hot water politically or legally.

“I think the entire Mueller probe is infected by intractable bias. And the president only risks some inadvertent misstatement becoming a new national narrative by doing that,” Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) told CNN.

Gaetz is one of a group of Trump attack dogs, attempting to discredit the FBI, the DOJ, and Robert Mueller.

Everyone has an opinion of what should happen, but nobody thinks Trump being Trump should be allowed to face off against somebody as seasoned and professional as Robert Mueller, and especially not in this kind of investigation.

Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) suggested Trump’s team answer Mueller’s questions in writing, while Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) said Trump’s lawyers should set limits on what would be covered in the interview.

I doubt the writing thing is going to happen. That would be unethical and troublesome on so many levels.

Some reports suggest Trump may be called to testify in the coming weeks, but nothing has been confirmed, yet.

It’s smart to suggest he not speak with Mueller, but is it legal? Can he refuse?

Stay tuned.

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After Today’s Good News for Walmart Employees, Sam’s Club Employees Are Hit With Sudden Unemployment

This morning I wrote about the good news for Walmart employees: The company was extending bonuses to all their employees, as well as upping the starting wages from $9 an hour to $11 an hour.

This was in response to the savings the company would be enjoying, due to the GOP tax bill that was recently signed.

Hours after that news, the other shoe fell.

Across the country, 63 Sam’s Club locations will be closing their doors. Many employees or those customers who hold the Sam’s Club membership cards didn’t find out until they showed up to those locations to find notes announcing the closings on the door.

What a way to find out you don’t have a job.

These aren’t completely new. Security filings show select stores have been closing since 2013.

Ten to 12 of the closed stores could be converted to e-commerce facilities, the spokesperson said. The news is consistent with ongoing plans by Sam’s Club to optimize its stores to fulfill more online orders and keep pace with internet retailers such as Boxed.

So they’re paring back, in order to do more online business.

Reports of the Sam’s Club closings began to emerge in local media outlets throughout Texas, New York, New Jersey Alaska and Arizona, amid complaints from disgruntled employees and confused customers. In some cases, employees weren’t notified in advance, some of the publications said.

Walmart has done better than Sam’s club, overall, and there’s stiff competition from Costco. For those who think the news of bonuses this morning, followed by the Sam’s Club closings this afternoon were just some kind of rope-a-dope, that’s just not the case.

This is a business model they’ve been working on for some time, now.

At an October meeting with investors, Sam’s Club CEO John Furner said the retailer needed to improve its “competitive position” as same-store sales growth started to slow into the first half of fiscal 2018.

Those efforts would include better targeting households that make between $75,000 to $125,000, Furner said. He didn’t speak to whether Sam’s Club would be closing or opening more stores as part of achieving those goals.

With Amazon, eBay, and other online sites doing booming business, it just makes sense.

Pharmacies are staying open in the closed locations, at least for the next 2 weeks, while they transition those accounts to new stores.

To show that commitment to the new online model, Walmart recently acquired Jet.com, in order to expand that digital business.

It’s unfortunate, but those employees effected by the closings will get an opportunity to apply for new jobs with the digital business.

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