June 20, 2010

Was Carly Fiorina, talking about Barbara Boxer's hair, guilty of what Robin Givhan calls "style bullying"?

Givhan writes:
[S]tyle encompasses far more than good looks. In fact, it trumps beauty because it's rooted in deep cultural knowledge and self-confidence. Style is an expression of choices -- a declaration of individuality. And thus, the lack of it is not a matter of poor genetic luck. It is, a particularly judgmental soul could argue, your fault....

[I]t can make others feel terribly old-fashioned and parochial by comparison.... Women -- and men -- use style as a tool of intimidation, self-promotion and belittlement all the time. U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina's off-topic remark about Sen. Barbara Boxer's hair caused quite the explosion when it was captured by a live microphone. Fiorina quipped that Boxer's hair was "so yesterday." Fiorina has said she was quoting a friend, but her tone oozed delight in the observation as she happily repeated it...

Fiorina's words weren't, by any means, vulgar or angry. Indeed, she had the cutting tone of a gossipy girlfriend who knows a thing or two about hair travails. But as she gently fingered her own chic pixie, while relaying an insulting description of Boxer's hair, the polite smile never faded from her face -- until she realized her microphone was on. She bore all the earmarks of a style bully.
Givhan concludes that Fiorina was making an indirect but effective political argument that Boxer is out of step with the times. But let's take a closer look at what was really going on. Rewatch the short clip and think about whether what we are really seeing is a woman "ooz[ing] delight" because she thought her hair was "chic" — a "chic pixie" — and the other woman's hair really was so much worse. Does Fiorina even agree with the friend she quotes? Watch carefully, and keep in mind that Carly Fiorina was only quite recently bald (as a consequence of cancer treatment):



It's a bit hard to tell unless you look for it, but I'm looking after hearing a friend, a cancer survivor who lost her own hair, insist that what we are seeing is a cancer survivor's humorous attitude about hair. I now think that Fiorina stopped in the middle of an anecdote when someone off camera signaled for her to shut up, but that if she had gone on, she would have made a self-effacing/sarcastic wisecrack about her own hair along the lines of: Oh, yes, because my hair is so today, if by "today," you mean not utterly bald.

The gesture she makes at her own hair, just before she clams up, is not, I think, a mean girl's I'm-so-gorgeous primp. It's comic business that would have fit amusingly with the wisecrack that was never cracked. My friend, a woman who, like Fiorina, has recently regrown hair, feels sure she has the ability to recognize a shared dark humor about hair that women who have not gone through the experience don't pick up on. Hair is a big deal to women, and our ears perk up when we hear talk about other women's hair. Givhan explores that with good sensibility, but I think she, like many others, is judging Fiorina without a full understanding of the context.

On the other hand, Fiorina's private psychodrama is a bit beside the point when she's running for the Senate. She's got to get these things right and not give her opponents material to use against her. In that light, it doesn't matter what the explanation is, because she's running for office, and she needs to do that competently.

And speaking of context, this is funny:

60 comments:

Quayle said...

"...worst CEO..."

Well, Carly bought Compaq (after a big proxy fight) which is now widely regarded as having been a good move, and from which Mark Hurd is now benefiting.

From Fortune Magazine's Mar 2, 2009 article on Mark Hurd:

"He's using the company's financial strength - its balance sheet boasts $11 billion in cash - to make acquisitions, like the $13 billion purchase of massive but flabby infotech consultant EDS in 2008. He's also pushing the notion that customers need not shop anywhere else for their computing, printing, and tech services needs. He can thank his predecessor, Carly Fiorina, for HP's breadth and depth. She was the architect of the tumultuous 2001 acquisition of Compaq."

El Pollo Real said...

Heaven forbid anyone talk about substance instead of style.

Steve said...

It is a shame that Barbara Boxer has run up against someone that can compete with her husband's money and her Frisco connections and style.

And doesn't Givhan make a living as a style bully?

ricpic said...

People, for the mostpart, are incapable of happiness. When life is no longer nasty, brutish and short they agonize over style status.

1jpb said...

Quayle is right, she was only the the 19th worst CEO of all time. She's great. But, first through eighteenth; those guys sucked.

ironrailsironweights said...

Hair is a big deal to women

Christ Almighty, don't get me started.


Peter

Bob Ellison said...

I suspect Fiorina's failure at HP (and failure it was-- Compaq was a ridiculous acquisition) has much to do with her going straight from AT&T/Lucent to leadership at HP. First a staid service company; then a product company. Very different situations, and most managers have trouble with switches like that.

Now she hopes to be a Senator-- another huge switch. It seems likely that she will be a failure at this as well. Don't forget: she did the "demon sheep" ad.

El Pollo Real said...

Somebody please explain this circle-the-wagons around Boxer attitude so prevalent here.

Someone on Twiitter told me it was because she stood up for LGBT rights early on.

Is that really it?

Psota said...

Don't want to offend the cancer survivors out there but...was nominating someone with a very recent cancer scare the best use of the GOP's time? There hasn't been a Republican Senator elected from California since 1988. As we all know, Senate seats are very valuable f***in' things. There's a once in a lifetime chance to defeat Barbara Boxer, the ultimate West Coast liberal. And we're going to do that by electing someone who could very easily be dead within a few years?

Remember Paul Tsongas? He survived a serious bout with cancer, ran for President assuring everybody that he was in tip-top shape...and was dead within 5 years. He would have died in office!Arlen Spector was running for re-election despite a Hodgkins scare a couple years ago. Ted Kennedy spent his last year in office wasting away. So is Robert Byrd. And, I don't even know what's going on with Tim Johnson.

OK, it's great that they were/are struggling to overcome dread disease. And, Fiorina looks healthy and obviously is full of energy, but...the point isn't to win the election, it's to actually hold the seat? Can Fiorina do that?

Chase said...

Only one thing matters on this "issue": that Carly Fiorina is a Republican running against the Democrat nominee/incumbent.

It is flat out impossible that it would matter at all if the roles were reversed and Boxer had done the same thing about Fiorina.

But again, the concepts of "shame" and "character" and selflessness" have pretty much run their course as false virtues for today's liberal.

EDH said...

Quite clearly, Fiorina apocryphally "quotes" Barbara Boxer who was "briefly on television this morning and said what everyone says: God, what is that hair? So yesterday."

Fiorina was saying that Boxer was on TV criticizing Fiorina's hair.

danielle said...

Honestly, it seems to me like she's fixing her ear piece, and then rearranging her hair. Its as if someone was just speaking into it because the interview is about to start.

And this, I'm not buying: "It's comic business that would have fit amusingly with the wisecrack that was never cracked."

If she was such a comic, that comedic sensibility would have been played out in other context. Who among us thinks funny when we think Carly ?

I think most people thinks smug, cocky, and arrogant when we think Carly (and probably John McCain would agree with that). And that interpretation is consistent with the notion of Carly as delighting in Barbara's hair style being so yesterday because Carly wants Barbara to be yesterday's news.

And further, the ease with which she is playing the cancer card makes me further doubt her comedic sensibilities. If she was talking about her hair humorously, then maybe new your acrobatic read on hair-gate would seem more plausible.

I think its more likely that people who are playing the cancer card on her behalf are projecting.

danielle said...

oh, and that video spoof is hilarious.

Chase said...

Oh, I forgot to say "fuck you" to every Boxer supporter.

And fuck your kids too, for supporting such a damaging to the United States piece of shit/cunt like Boxer.

Did I mention she's a cunt. Literally the worst Senator in the last 50 years. Worthless, completely self-centered, a literal danger to the military and defense of this nation.

Did I forget to say "fuck your children" too, to every Boxer supporter? Because she's fucking every decent American family's future economically and morally.

Did I forget to mention every Boxer supporter can pat themselves on the back every day for being the mental equivalent of a zit on the asshole of Barbara Boxer?

Sorry if I forgot.






Did I forget to mention that

danielle said...

... i left a sentence out here:

And further, the ease with which she is playing the cancer card makes me further doubt her comedic sensibilities. If she was talking about her hair humorously, then maybe new your acrobatic read on hair-gate would seem more plausible. Instead, she's talking about her hair and cancer in a political way, in an attempt to get sympathy and distract from the political flub of hair-gate.

GMay said...

Chase,

I'm just not pickin' up what you're puttin' down man.

El Pollo Real said...

Chase wrote: Oh, I forgot to say "fuck you" to every Boxer supporter.

See what I mean? Something malicious even comes out in the sarcasm.

edutcher said...

She sounds as if she's quoting someone else, from what I can see, but she will have to learn about loose talk in public.

But then the Demos are finally getting theirs, thanks to alert citizens.

Bob Ellison said...

I suspect Fiorina's failure at HP (and failure it was-- Compaq was a ridiculous acquisition) has much to do with her going straight from AT&T/Lucent to leadership at HP. First a staid service company; then a product company. Very different situations, and most managers have trouble with switches like that.

You obviously never heard of Bell Labs. It's been a big innovator in computer technology over the years. Part of the reason, I'd guess, HP hired her.

WV "midliz" How Richard Burton referred to his wife's tummy.

AJ Lynch said...

Again. Our highly skilled and tenacious MSM has the guts to take on a really big issue in the race for Senate in our biggest state.


wv = bismul [we have a bismul media in America]

Irene said...

"And further, the ease with which she is playing the cancer card makes me further doubt her comedic sensibilities. If she was talking about her hair humorously, then maybe new your acrobatic read on hair-gate would seem more plausible. Instead, she's talking about her hair and cancer in a political way, in an attempt to get sympathy and distract from the political flub of hair-gate."


Ah, danielle. In an earlier thread, you responded to his observation by noting, "even Carly didnt play the recently recovered from cancer card ..."

So which is it: cancer card or no cancer card?

(I have a dog in this fight, so I am curious about your rationalization.)

Irene said...

Pfft. "this observation.

bagoh20 said...

Not a word about policy to be found. I know it's not really relevant to an election, but is there another thing we should know about these women, or do we just not take women seriously as candidates?

Chase said...

Something malicious even comes out in the sarcasm.

Let's call it weary disdain for the America-hatred of every Boxer supporter.

danielle said...

Irene, seriously ? go back and review the timeline of carly's statements and Ann's blog posts and you can answer your own question.

Irene said...

"seriously ?"

Review the timing of my comment in that earlier thread and your response to it.

You seemed to insist Fiorina was not playing the cancer card (and your tone suggested that I was).

danielle said...

i think another piece of evidence that negates such an artful reading of hair-gate is that Carly refused to apologize to Barbara. You'd think someone who wants a pass for her comment because she warrants sympathy (since she had cancer) would be a little more generous/sensitive when it comes to their judgments about the way another person's hair looks. You wouldn't expect that person to be so catty, and then so dismissive.

danielle said...

Irene, go back and review CARLYs statements, and when she started talking about 'no hair.'

this isnt about you.

Irene said...

A sense of humor is a good attribute to have. It is a useful tool for politicians, academics, workers, students, and commenters.

Chase said...

Danielle, why do I get the disgusted feeling that you wouldn't spend one second commenting on this if Barbara Boxer had made the same statement about Carly Fiorina's hair?

AJ Lynch said...

God I hate ultra-serious liberals. I mean really hate them and their so-called nuanced beliefs. The DC Beltway has some sort of mind warping machine. Most everyone who goes there thinks all solutions emanate from DC.

I can think of many things that emanate from there but good ideas and solutions sure don't.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

i think another piece of evidence that negates such an artful reading of hair-gate is that Carly refused to apologize to Barbara.

Why should she apologize? Fiorina is entitled to her opinion that Barbara Boxer's hair is that of an old hag (my opinion).

She might express some regret that she stated such opinion in public, but she doesn't owe Boxer anything.

Never apologize for being correct and never apologize for having your own opinion. I hate it when politicians or anyone gives a fake apology. They are better off standing their ground.

And I agree with Chase. Fuck you Boxer supporters for allowing this horrible woman to advance the ruin of the State of California and the Country with her ignorant and arrogant opinions.

Big Mike said...

I was wondering when Robin Givhan would weigh in on Carly Fiorina poaching her (Robin's) turf. Only Robin, the great annointed one of the Washington Post is allowed to make catty remarks about the attire and hairdos of female politicians.

William said...

Who knew that a wisecrack about hair could command such exegesis and meta analysis? Is it any wonder that men spend such vast amounts of time watching football.

Alex said...

Just another case of Republican incompetence. Yet another Democrat bailed out!

Alex said...

But in the end it comes down to the fact that it's impossible for a Republican to win state-wide office in CA anymore. Can't defeat millions of illegal alien votes.

LilyBart said...

I think its amusing that Givhan would call Fiorina out on the "style bully" thing. Pot, meet Kettle.

As I've said before, Givhan has made a whole career out of the High School Mean Girl thing.

Irene said...

DBQ said, "Never apologize for being correct and never apologize for having your own opinion."

Those are good words to live by, DBQ.

Big Mike said...

@danielle, why on earth should Carly apologize? You'd think that someone who adds a senator's salary to her husband's considerable wealth could afford a good hair stylist. John Edwards could certainly suggest one.

c3 said...

Maybe its because I'm a guy but I just don't get the continued discussion. Stupid remark, political hit, move on.

Now on a separate but related note (and I don't live in California so just sayin')

Shouldn't the idea that Fiorina was a bad CEO be a good thing to Dems? I mean given all the "Big Bad Corporation"-bashing we've seen and heard the past two years, you'd think that would be a badge of honor

c3 said...

Just watched the video....did you actually find that funny. Frankly it felt like a standard liberal narrative "rich, bitchy Republican" played for a laugh.

Didn't do it for me.

Trooper York said...

A sense of style is a very subjective thing. I never knew that until I started working in womens clothing.

I mean selling womans clothing....
you know what I mean.

Trooper York said...

I have learned quite a bit about plus size clothing and everything thet would fit someone above a size ten. I must say the most commentators and especially Robin Givhan know jack shit about it. She is a mindless twit with the typical disdain for the realities of fashion. Her opinions are totally worthlees.

All journalists are morons, liars and fools but she is much worse than the run of mill idiot.

Joe said...

When it comes to fashion (or breast size), most women are bitches. What's new?

J said...

I assumed she was trying to bait Boxer into saying something about her (Fiorina's) hair, which is the way it is due to chemotherapy.

"Literally the worst Senator in the last 50 years"

As stupid as Boxer is, she still looks like Einstein next to Patty Murray.

WV: outsid - to be more Sid than Sid himself.

Dead Julius said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dead Julius said...

Oh, Althouse, I am worried about you! Perhaps you overdosed on Jeni's ice cream yesterday; I don't know how to otherwise explain the pro-Establishment partisanship that reeks from this post.

First of all, Carly Fiornia is an inept virtueless ant that would be (and was) squashed in the modern tech world. Compared to Apple or Google or even Microsoft, what was H.P. under her leadership? They made nothing but pathetic and uninspiring products, just cruising along by leveraging the two famous names of their founders, producing no original innovation at all, pursuing stupid acquisitions to further dilute attention from their lack of creativity and drive. And, worst of all, they turned the best line of printers in the world into some sort of technological white trash that belongs right where it is-- on the discount rack at Best Buy!

As for the video clip, the issue is not what the other end of the conversation was, or what her line of thought might have been. Nobody can read minds, not even you, Professor. Plus there are so many facets to a conversations that any simplification-- like the one you provide-- is going to be inherently over-simplified.

Rather, the issue is that when she realized the mic was on, she exhibited the caught-red-handed guilty face. She suddenly realized that she had let her guard down and let the real Carly out. This means that she's faking it continuously for the camera and, more importantly, she's faking it for the electorate. That one instant says all that the voters need to know about Darling Carly.

Why can't we just have a real candidate that talks and acts the same way whether the mic is on or not? Is it a little personal authenticity too much to ask for?

She's disingenuous. She's incompetent, as demonstrated by her leadership at Lexmark... OOPS I meant to write "HP". And now she's trying as hard as she can to move to a whole new level of being a mindless corrupt establishment whore.

Steve Jobs wouldn't be disingenuous. He might go off on a 5-minute tirade about how much of a fucking incompetent asshole you are, but frankly America needs some of that no-nonsense tough-love. Steve Jobs could crush pathetic Carly in a second.

Carly sucks.

STEVE JOBS FOR EMPEROR!

Synova said...

I'm sure someone mentioned this already but...

Doesn't Robin Givhan make her living by being a style bully?

Is this another "It's okay when I do it because I'm a journalist and I'm special" sort of thing?

Dead Julius said...

Oh, Althouse, I am worried about you! Perhaps you overdosed on Jeni's ice cream yesterday; I don't know how to otherwise explain the pro-Establishment partisanship that reeks from this post.

First of all, Carly Fiorna is an inept virtueless ant that would be (and was) squashed in the modern tech world. Compared to Apple or Google or even Microsoft, what was H.P. under her leadership? They made nothing but pathetic and uninspiring products, cruising along by leveraging the two famous names of their founders and wide-open legacy distribution channels, producing no original innovation at all, while pursuing stupid acquisitions to further distract from their lack of creativity and drive. And, worst of all, they took the best line of printers in the world and turned them into technological white trash that belongs right where it is-- on the discount rack at Best Buy!

Don't forget: She was ousted! Her own board tossed her into the FAIL pail. Did she go and have an astounding success somewhere else since 2005? Nah... Oh but she did have cancer! What a way for the malevolent GOP to try to grab the sympathy vote! Now every pink-ribbon-wearing California Fembot is going to have to weigh her tugging heartstrings in the voting booth to make the best choice in line with Marxist principles.

As for the video clip, the issue is not what the other end of the conversation was, or what Carly's line of thought might have been. Nobody can read minds; not even you, Professor. Plus there are so many facets to a conversations that any simplification-- like the one you provide-- is going to be inherently over-simplified.

Rather, the issue is that when she realized the mic was on, she exhibited the caught-red-handed guilty face. She realized in a flash that she had let her guard down and let the real Carly out. This means that she's faking it continuously for the camera and, more importantly, she's faking it for the electorate. That one instant says all that the voters need to know about Darling Carly.

Why can't we just have a real candidate who talks and acts the same way whether the mic is on or not? Is it a little personal authenticity too much to ask for?

She's disingenuous. She's incompetent, as demonstrated by her leadership at Lexmark... OOPS I meant to write "H.P.". And now she's trying as hard as she can to move to a whole new level of being a mindless corrupt establishment whore.

Steve Jobs wouldn't be disingenuous. He might go off on a 5-minute tirade about how much of a fucking incompetent asshole you are, but frankly America needs some of that no-nonsense tough-love. Steve Jobs could crush pathetic Carly in a second.

Carly sucks.

STEVE JOBS FOR EMPEROR!

Synova said...

You know... that's not even nasty. It's not horribly mean. It's not like tearing into someone who might not be pretty or who wears poor clothes or unflattering things because they can't afford the trial and error to figure out what works for them.

I don't see the point even in saying that it's cancer humor, even if it might have been.

Also, she's supposed to have an adversarial relationship with Boxer. She's got to be thinking about her own presentation more than she ever has since elections are so very visual. (I'm just going for a very ordinary retail job interview tomorrow and I'm considering my hair and how I don't want to look *tired*.) So she's really going to notice Boxer and what she does.

At most this rates an "Oopsie" because at most that is what it is.

The idea of apologizing or it is almost obscene. We seem to be using apologies, more and more, as a way to punish and control. Apologies are demanded for every last thing. We have forced apologies instead of discussions and think we're making progress.

Enough is enough.

Methadras said...

The incessant politics of hair. Where the fuck is Samson when you need him?

George said...

So how is a remark made while someone is (thinking) they are speaking privately meant to be an act of "bullying"?

aronamos said...

from Ms Givhan, in 2005:

It has been a long time since so much syrupy nostalgia has been in evidence at the White House. But Tuesday night, when President Bush announced his choice for the next associate justice of the Supreme Court, it was hard not to marvel at the 1950s-style tableau vivant that was John Roberts and his family.

There they were -- John, Jane, Josie and Jack -- standing with the president and before the entire country. The nominee was in a sober suit with the expected white shirt and red tie. His wife and children stood before the cameras, groomed and glossy in pastel hues -- like a trio of Easter eggs, a handful of Jelly Bellies, three little Necco wafers. There was tow-headed Jack -- having freed himself from the controlling grip of his mother -- enjoying a moment in the spotlight dressed in a seersucker suit with short pants and saddle shoes. His sister, Josie, was half-hidden behind her mother's skirt. Her blond pageboy glistened. And she was wearing a yellow dress with a crisp white collar, lace-trimmed anklets and black patent-leather Mary Janes.

(Who among us did a double take? Two cute blond children with a boyish-looking father getting ready to take the lectern -- Jack Edwards? Emma Claire? Is that you? Are all little boys now named Jack?)

The wife wore a strawberry-pink tweed suit with taupe pumps and pearls, which alone would not have been particularly remarkable, but alongside the nostalgic costuming of the children, the overall effect was of self-consciously crafted perfection. The children, of course, are innocents. They are dressed by their parents. And through their clothes choices, the parents have created the kind of honeyed faultlessness that jams mailboxes every December when personalized Christmas cards arrive bringing greetings "to you and yours" from the Blake family or the Joneses. Everyone looks freshly scrubbed and adorable, just like they have stepped from a Currier & Ives landscape.

In a time when most children are dressed in Gap Kids and retailers of similar price-point and modernity, the parents put young master Jack in an ensemble that calls to mind John F. "John-John" Kennedy Jr.

Separate the child from the clothes, which do not acknowledge trends, popular culture or the passing of time. They are not classic; they are old-fashioned. These clothes are Old World, old money and a cut above the light-up/shoe-buying hoi polloi.

The clothes also reflect a bit of the aesthetic havoc that often occurs when people visit the White House. (What should I wear? How do I look? Take my picture!) The usual advice is to dress appropriately. In this case, an addendum would have been helpful: Please select all attire from the commonly accepted styles of this century. (And someone should have given notice to the flip-flop-wearing women of Northwestern University's lacrosse team, who visited the White House on July 12 for a meet-and-greet with the president: proper footwear required. Flip-flops, modeled after shoes meant to be worn into a public shower or on the beach, have no business anywhere in the vicinity of the president and his place of residence.)

Dressing appropriately is a somewhat selfless act. It's not about catering to personal comfort. One can't give in fully to private aesthetic preferences. Instead, one asks what would make other people feel respected? What would mark the occasion as noteworthy? What signifies that the moment is bigger than the individual?

But the Roberts family went too far. In announcing John Roberts as his Supreme Court nominee, the president inextricably linked the individual -- and his family -- to the sweep of tradition. In their attire, there was nothing too informal; there was nothing immodest. There was only the feeling that, in the desire to be appropriate and respectful of history, the children had been costumed in it.

Balfegor said...

Well, Carly bought Compaq (after a big proxy fight) which is now widely regarded as having been a good move, and from which Mark Hurd is now benefiting.

I'm sure it was, but it put HP on the list of computer manufacturers I will not buy from. Compaq's computers were, hands down, the absolute worst computers I have ever used. Couldn't take the risk I buy something from HP and it turns out to have been put together by their ex-Compaq team.

That said, it's been what, eight years? Maybe they've fired all the Compaq people, and it's safe to buy HP again.

Ken said...

The remark was unfortunate in that it criticized the outside of Princess Polar Bear's head rather than inside which is completely empty.

David said...

Regarding Carly's performance at HP: she may well have been a decent strategist; the issues were more with her leadership style. For example, it's often said that she took down the pictures of Messers Hewlett & Packard that hung in the lobby and replaced them with her own. Even if she didn't direct this to happen, it would be disturbing if she had created a culture in which people thought this was what the boss wanted.

But Senator is not an executive position (except for running her own staff), so the leadership issue is less crucial than if the were running for, say, governor.

Almost anyone would be better than Boxer.

LordSomber said...

"Style bully" sounds like what writers call their editors behind their backs.

Bruce Hayden said...

I'm sure it was, but it put HP on the list of computer manufacturers I will not buy from. Compaq's computers were, hands down, the absolute worst computers I have ever used. Couldn't take the risk I buy something from HP and it turns out to have been put together by their ex-Compaq team.

That said, it's been what, eight years? Maybe they've fired all the Compaq people, and it's safe to buy HP again
.

I think that the Compaq purchase gave the company the critical mass to be one of the biggest players in the PC market, and to survive there. As they have.

BUT, service has really crashed, esp. for consumer grade computers. I bought my kid a HP laptop 3 years ago, and w/i a year, it had been back three times (the new Mac laptop is worse). The third time, it disappeared into a black hole somewhere on the Indian subcontinent. Spent 6 weeks dealing with tech support there before I was finally able to escalate to someone back in the U.S., who promptly sent us a brand new computer with extra goodies.

I bought a Compaq at about the same time, and it has worked ok over that 3 years, but I still only have 2 of the 3 USB ports working, and built-in WiFi didn't work until I sent it back. But, still, that first HP was much worse than the Compaq, and was significantly more expensive.

I do think that the purchase of Compaq may have hurt HP's vaunted quality. They can still make good stuff, but they also now make a lot of junk. I bought one ink jet printer three years ago that is indestructible. It is commercial grade, weighs a ton, has huge ink cartridges, a 500 page paper drawer, and is built to last. At about the same time, I bought one of their consumer grade photo-printers, and it barely survived the first set of ink cartridges.

So, I would suggest that the results of the Compaq purchase are mixed. Critical mass at the expense of quality, at least in its consumer grade products.

liliyy1314 said...
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Charlie Martin said...

Wait a minute. This would be the Robin Givhan who bitched about the Roberts family being too carefully coordinated"? Who said Condie Rice was dressing as a dominatrix? Who made a big deal about Hillary CLinton showing the tiniest bit of cleavage?

That is to say, the WaPo Fashion Editor? Complaining about "fashion bullying"?

If it weren't for fashion bullying, wouldn't she be working at McDonalds or something?

jamboree said...
This comment has been removed by the author.