Airman23, I agree that the manufacturer should be held accountable for these issues rather than the retailer.
Unfortunately, the way it usually works out, for those that buy the sets local, like me, it seems so much easier to just get the retailer involved because often they will take care of you, and in a week or less you can have a replacement, delivered and set up. Like you said, the unfortunate thing is the retailer is taking the hit because the manufacturers have quality control issues. On the one hand, that's just part of being a retailer - knowing that some of what you carry can have flaws or issues due to the manufacturer. But I understand it's unfortunate that they often get return after return when really it should be Samsung or Panasonic or whoever else is responsible for the issue.
I think part of the reason for the tendency to return to the retailer is convenience. It's a lot quicker and easier to pack the tv up into the car, or call Best Buy and have them arrange for a swap or exchange, than to call the manufacturer and go through the nightmare of navigating through their phone structure, waiting for a rep, explaining the issue, get connected to tech support (or maybe get told you have to wait 48 hours for a return call), then hopefully convince them to connect you to the department responsible for the exchange or service call, then wait who knows how long for them to get the set exchanged. It doesn't help when tech support doesn't usually know what you're talking about either.
It's so much easier to just call Best Buy and go through them. You would think if a retailer gets enough returns of a particular model they would contact the manufacturer and voice their concern.