I have a friend who had contacts with top Communist Party members in the Soviet Union in the late 1970’s USSR. He dealt with people who were rich enough and politically correct enough to be allowed to buy satellite dishes.
Occasionally, one of them would visit him in his Bay Area home. One visitor asked my friend to take him shopping, so he could see how Americans lived. So, my friend drove him to a local commercial area south of San Francisco. He took the man inside. “No,” his guest said. “I want to see a real store.” My friend assured him that this was a real store. The man denied that this was anything but a store for the elite. “I want to see a store where the average person shops.” My friend took him to another store. Same response.
“All right,” my friend said. “I’ll drive. You point to any store you want to go into.” The man agreed. When they entered the first store, the man stood in the middle of an aisle. He began to weep. Then he said: “They lied. They lied.” His worldview came unglued in that aisle.In Defense of Shopping Malls
Yes, they lied.
They’re still lying.