Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Stop getting shirty

The storm in a teacup over the new Nike England shirt for the World Cup in Rio this year rumbles on, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.  Despite his admission that it is "clearly not" the rĂ´le of government to set the price of football shirts, Prime Minister David Cameron has been unable to resist wading in, in that intensely patronising way politicians have when it comes to sticking their oar into any and all issues in the public consciousness.

Yes, £90 for a football shirt is somewhat on the pricey side - and, yes, some fans won't be able to afford that.  Then again, some people can't afford a Range Rover; other people can't afford a loaf of bread.  Whoever you are, there will always be some things that are out of your price range.

It's worth remembering that the 'market value' of any product or service is simply what people are prepared to pay for it.  If you think £90 is too much to pay for a football shirt, don't buy one.  If enough people feel they are not prepared to - or are unable to - spend that amount of money on one shirt, sales figures will be low, and those in charge of setting the prices will realise they have made a mistake (and will probably drop the prices as a result).

I shan't be buying the new England shirt.  But neither do I want condescending politicians to swoop in and 'save' the poor little consumer - who, after all, has the ultimate power not to spend.

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