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Does Oprah need a $38,000 handbag?

August 15, 2013

To the editor: The Journal has been publishing articles about Oprah Winfrey’s unsuccessful attempt to purchase a $38,000 purse at a Zurich, Switzerland boutique....

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Aug-15-13 2:15 PM

I agree with notsonuts but also will add that she has done lots with Her money for others there are stars out there who don't even do half that.

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Aug-15-13 5:38 PM

Hey, at least she is spending her money and putting it back into the economy instead of stashing it in a tax haven in the Cayman Islands. She has done more for other people than a lot of people with her amount of money. If she wants to blow $38,000 on something, who are we to care?

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Aug-15-13 10:05 PM

Spending the $38,000 has nothing to do with the incident as much as the racial overtones she introduced into the incident. She wanted her view of the incident be made to the public. Her apology to the incident is enough for most people to understand she was wrong in what she did. Currently this incident far out shadows the good deeds other posters have mentioned but hopefully will soon be forgotten.

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Aug-15-13 10:45 PM

A similar incident happened when the Duck Dynasty families wre in NY promoting their upcoming 4th Season. Jase asked where the bathroom was and the employee said come with me and escorted him out of the hotel and said "Good Luck".Jase just came around front, joined his wife and despite the undertones of being a homeless man, still stqayed at the hotel. He did not run out and proclaim the hotel was "racist" or "bigoted" but laughed off the incident as anyone would have. Just depends on what view you want to take and how you want to manipulate people's thinking.

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Aug-16-13 1:22 AM

Who cares how Oprah spends her money? Who cares if she couldn't buy it? Why is this news? Why are people even worrying about this?

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Aug-16-13 10:50 AM

But MCW,

Isn't she one of those CEO's you just love to rail against ? After all, she made 77 million last year. Don't you think other CEO's spend their money on luxury items such as $38,000.00 purses ? Why is she entitled to her wealth while others are not ? Seems like a double standard to me.

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Aug-16-13 4:31 PM

JR, her wealth did not come at the expense of making other people work for next to slave wages. She was self-made, not riding on the backs of cheap labor. I realize that you probably have no respect for these types of multi-millionaires, but I do.

I would be willing to bet that the people who work for Oprah aren't sitting on public subsidies because they are working for minimum wage. There is a difference, JR, which clearly you do not understand.

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Aug-16-13 4:33 PM

Another talk show host that is quite respectable is Jay Leno. He gave up pay raises just to ensure that NBC would not cut any of his staff, many of which have been with him for many years. You see, some "rich" people actually care about other people over their hoards of money.

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Aug-16-13 6:37 PM

This is not about her wealth. This is about Oprah trying to make another comment about racism again and again and again.

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Aug-17-13 8:39 AM

Oprah giving I-pads and cars away to upper middle class housewives who can afford to show up on her TV set is admirable, I guess. Starting a school in Africa is a worthy cause as well. But black people, most of them young, are being slaughtered every weekend in her hometown of Chicago without a peep from Oprah. Her race is having children out of wedlock at a 60% rate and black unemployment is twice the national average, but apparently she is Ok with that, because she doesn't use her incredible influence to affect change in those areas. She is quick to point out the oppressive nature of whitey when she runs into an uncomfortable situation trying to shop for $38,000 purse. She is another disgusting fraud who is disconnected from reality, and people like MiddleClass tag her as being somehow noble.

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Aug-17-13 8:52 AM

I never said Nobel. I never was an Oprah fan, but I stand by my comment that she does more good things with her money than many people with her degree of wealth...which she earned and is entitled to waste on handbags as she pleases.

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Aug-17-13 3:50 PM

Duck Dynasty being white wouldn't have had racist people attack him .

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Aug-17-13 4:52 PM

I never said Nobel either.

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Aug-17-13 4:59 PM

President Obama and Oprah Winfrey complaining about the disadvantages of blacks, women and black women in America today is like Chris Christie complaining that you can't get a good meal in New Jersey anymore.

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Aug-17-13 6:47 PM

Duck Dynasty was treated as a homeless person. Isn't that being "attacked" mentally. To me this is racism as much as Oprah is always harping about.

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Aug-18-13 10:49 AM

No, but you did say noble. That was more than I was offering up.

The guy from Duck Dynasty chooses to take on the appearance of a homeless man. I doubt that Oprah looked like someone that clearly couldn't afford such a purchase, unless you assume that all black people can't afford such a purchase.

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Aug-19-13 11:32 AM

MCW - "slave wages" is a classic oxymoron, emphasis on moron.

Oprah's "giving" is self-serving. She does it when the cameras are rolling and she can sell advertising. I don't see that type of exploitation any differently and in some ways is worse than your low wage discount retail workers. At least people with a job are taking some iniative to better their lives rather than strictly looking for a hand-out. Oprah certainly promotes a hand-out mentality.

Do you know who the most philanthropic woman in America is ? Yes, it's Kristy Walton. Oprah does crack the top 50 though.

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Aug-19-13 3:09 PM

I am always concerned when someone attempts to decide what another person "needs." Was that handbag overpriced? Heck yes. So are a lot of things but if people have the loot to pay for it then go ahead. It's easy to say that money can be used for a lot of other charitable causes but then we end up on a slippery slope of deciding where other people should spend their money and who deserves what.

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Aug-20-13 2:46 AM

JR, I'm glad that you can get that warm fuzzy feeling from my tax dollars allowing Kristy Walton to have cheap enough labor so that she can spread her wealth among the causes of her choosing.

Do you know what is better? The CEO of Costco pays his workers a very good wage, he doesn't pay himself an excess amount, and his stores are doing very well. His workers probably have more money to collectively contribute to charity than Kristy Walton ever has. I bet there are very few of Costco's employees that even qualify for government aid. You see, when you ALLOW people to make their own way, they don't need the government.

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Aug-20-13 11:21 AM


Where would you rather have "your" tax money go - to someone with a job or someone without one ?

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Aug-21-13 3:08 AM

Who cares its her money.She can buy six and give them as Christmas gifts. Have you been naughty or nice?

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Aug-21-13 7:28 AM

Neither. The person with a job should be able to support themselves on that job. If a company cannot stay a float without relying on the government to float their cheap labor, then in most cases we don't need that company.

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Aug-21-13 11:08 AM


My daughter works at Herbergers part-time. You seriously think she deserves a wage high enough to support herself ? This is her very first job - no experience. She should walk right in and make how much $15.00 - $18.00 an hour ??? Really ? So, say she would get $15.00 an hour with no experience. What should someone with 5 years experience get ? I can tell you one thing, if you pay people that based on no skills or experience only Oprah would could afford to shop there.

The market dictates what people get paid based on their skill set. Everyone has to start somewhere - even at discount retailers. If nobody wanted to work at Walmart based on the "crappy" pay they offered Walmart would have no choice but to raise their starting wage.

I tell my daughter if she wants to get paid more the best thing she can do is to make herself more valuable by obtaining a good education and gaining meaningful experience.

We don't believe in handouts.

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Aug-22-13 1:56 AM

JReader, since your corporate friends sent so many of the good paying manufacturing jobs to China to pad their compensation packages, jobs like Walmart and Herbergers have become more than just high school or second income jobs.

If these jobs were just for people like your daughter, then we wouldn't have so many of their employees on food stamps. I doubt your daughter qualifies for food stamps because she is still living under your roof (presumably).

Of course, we could say that if you hire a minor, you can pay them $5 an hour, but if you hire an adult, you have to pay $10, but that would get thrown out in court. Of course, companies still manage to pay women less then men for doing the same job, so who knows.

Eliminate the free trade deals, raise the import tariffs and a lot of these problems would go away, but so would the corporate profits.

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Aug-22-13 8:17 AM

MCW, what about the blame for the congressional people you vote for for authorizing all the trade deals you keep mentioning? They lined their pockets greatly and continue to do so. Ross Perot predicted that "giant sucking sound" of jobs going out of the USA but you still voted for those you can't seem to hold accountable for passing laws allowing such actions.

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