Yes that's exactly the problem. And with many of the visitors to the parts portion of the store (if you can still find one) needing some guidance they can get disenchanted, it becomes a vicious circle. I'm a Max too BTW, isn't that magnificent? (even if I do have a sad sense of humour :-))
@Etmax: ...and then employs people that are just place fillers, people without an engineering soul.
I remember going into a Radio Shack maybe 15 years ago to get a resistor ... I found something suitable (value, power rating, tollerance, etc.) and the assistant (referring to the colored bands) said "that's pretty; what do you use those for?"
Following that I wrote a letter to Radio Shack HQ saying they shoudl hire me to travel the country teaching fundamental electronics concepts to all their store staff ... I never heard anything back.