Please don't shoot the messenger...

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by MikeD, May 12, 2005.

  1. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

    Aug 30, 2003
    Please bear in mind that this was sent to me as a political message but since Wal-Mart comes up as a frequent topic here I figured I'd pass this along. If it doesn't belong here I apologize and please feel free to remove it.

    Whatever happened to good corporate citizenship?

    In America today, a business you might know pays such poor wages its workers have to turn to taxpayers to pay for their health care. The same firm has made China, a totalitarian dictatorship that holds wages down by outlawing unions, its supplier of choice -- the source of 70 percent of its inventory.

    And the family that owns this company and has become wildly wealthy? They make sure to invest their money in the Republican Party -- where they know their investment will pay off with tax cuts for the richest few.

    What company is this? Wal-Mart -- the largest, richest corporation in the world.

    Major organizations we work with -- groups such as the Service Employees International Union, and the United Food and Commercial Workers -- believe America's largest corporation should do better. To make that happen, they've launched a massive campaign to show Americans the massive scale of Wal-Mart's irresponsibility.

    But those groups need allies. Should we join the fight? The choice is yours:

    Some competitors of Wal-Mart know the value of doing well by doing good. They pay living wages. They offer good benefits. And they earn steady profits -- in part because they attract, and hold onto, high-quality workers. These companies have helped make America the wealthiest nation in the world and they sustain our prosperity.

    Wal-Mart takes a radically different approach. For it, every penny is profit -- it fights for every dollar, no matter how it gets it. The result? You pay to make Wal-Mart rich -- through tax benefits and infrastructure bestowed by state and local governments -- even if you never shop there.

    Take Georgia, a state where Wal-Mart ranks as the largest private employer. In 2002, state officials there figured out that Wal-Mart employees had some 10,000 children on the rolls of PeachCare, the state's child health care program. No other company's employees had even a thousand children on the rolls -- but Wal-Mart had no qualms about dumping its costs onto Georgia taxpayers.

    Wal-Mart used to make a point of keeping jobs in the United States by buying American. Today, though, the company single-handedly accounts for nearly 10 percent of all Chinese goods sold in the United States. Wal-Mart keeps prices low by stocking as much as 70 percent of its products from Chinese suppliers -- suppliers who pay wages kept low by a dictatorial government.

    Those policies helped Wal-Mart's owners, the Walton family, build a fortune worth tens of billions. That money makes the company a major force in Washington. And the family uses its wealth to bankroll the radical right -- it spent millions last year to elect candidates devoted to eliminating the estate tax, which affects only the wealthiest of the wealthy. Wal-Mart wealth is also behind Progress for America -- a Republican front group the Waltons have financed to the tune of millions of dollars.

    America needs better corporate citizens, and Wal-Mart --the largest company in the world -- has the resources to stand on its own instead of exploiting people overseas and piggybacking on American taxpayers and working families. But making it live up to its responsibilities poses a huge challenge -- because taking on Wal-Mart means going up against the biggest corporation on Earth.

    With an undertaking that massive, we need everyone on board. So you make the call:

    We know that America works best when we honor those who work hard and play by the rules.

    It's time to decide: shouldn't we teach Wal-Mart to do the same?

    Tom Hughes
    Executive Director, Democracy for America

    P.S. -- Please forward this message to anyone you know who might be interested in the issue.
  2. nodak3

    nodak3 Well-Known Member Supporter

    Feb 5, 2003
    Hmm--why were those Georgia kids on Peachcare? Here in our town, Wal-Mart does offer reasonable cost health insurance to its employees. They do pay living wages here. And people are leaving union Safeway because they can't make a living. Hmm.

  3. EasyDay

    EasyDay Gimme a YAAAAY!

    Aug 28, 2004
    NC Arkansas
    I just wrote a term paper on corporations for a Business Ethics college. I could go on and on about the shocking facts my research turned up, but instead of boring you, I just want to say that the same names of several large corporations keep coming up in a negative tone.... one being Wal*Mart.

    But, also know that the law states that a corporations duty is to make a profit for their shareholders. It further states that if the company does something good (environmentally, donations to charities, etc.) that does not cause a positive return to the shareholders in some way, then they are acting out of their bounds and are acting illegally!! :no: They aren't allowed to do good deeds unless it turns a profit in the end???????

    GM is another one that I'm boycotting. In the 90s, they decided that it was okay that over 500 people got killed because of poor gas tank design in some of their cars, because they saved over $6 per car in production (times that times the 41,000,000 GM cars on the road. Law suits were costing them on average $200,000 each. It was much more profitable to let people get maimed and killed than fix the problem. Did the shareholders know that those millions in profits were traded for the lives of 500 innocent people? I wonder if they would have settled for a little less profit had they known the whole story.

    Sorry to ramble, but this really chaps my grits!
    And.... maybe this thread should be in GC.
  4. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

    Jan 1, 2005
    I haven't verified everything in the article so won't comment on most, but the part about estate taxes only affecting the very wealthy is simply not true. A lot of family farms who had acquired a lot of land (and paid taxes on it all their lives by the way) but had relatively little cash suddenly wound up owning huge taxes again simply because Dad and Mom had died. The estate tax is the most unfair tax in America and it hurts everyone; not just the "rich".

    I also know a lot of people who work at Wal-Mart and most of them enjoy working there.

    I do try to limit what I spend in there because if possible I like to support local businesses.
  5. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jan 20, 2004
    I read about 1/2 of that. This is one of those highly charged topics, and no one will bother to look at facts. Mention Walmart, abortion, Republican vs Democrat, Labor vs management..... Facts don't matter, we have our owncore beliefs & we will defend them to our dying day.

    So, if it were me, this would go on general chat, & not here. But I don't much mind however that goes....

    My traditional town of 15,000 was struggleing with a Super Walmart coming to town. It has been quite a political battle to watch. People pick one side, and battle. Facts be darned!

    On thing that came up real often - that Walmart pays so low that everyone working there is automatically on welfare.

    So, someone did a study. The few remaining downtown businesses pay an average of $8.50 an hour or so. Walmart in the three towns around us pays the floor help an average of $10.30 an hour.

    No one could refute those numbers.

    It kinda put a kabash on the whole anti-Walmart craze, and land purchase & construction plans are finally under way.

    Kinda makes me wonder about the rest of the laudry list mentined up above? How much is true, and how much is chest pounding?

    You either lead, follow, or get out of the way. That is what our ecconomy is based upon. I'd love to live in a place with 80 acre farms, a milk cow on each, a small town with a hardware store & a couple small grociery stores.

    None of those things work any more.

    If they wanted to 'save' downtown in my town, why are 1/2 the downtown buildings already empty? Why did they let Target in 5 years ago, why did they let Kmart in 25 years ago, why did they let Pamida in 40 years ago (gone now, couldn't keep up with Kmart...) Why did they let the 3 grocery stores take over the 7 corner stores 40 years ago, why did they let 2 of them merge and turn into a town with 2 jumbo groceries???? (Which are now afraid of Wlamart....)

    Where do we start, where do we stop???? Why protect some, but not protect others?

    I do not understand the hatred directed to Walmart. I can understand looking for a different way of life, but Walmart is only a product of doing American business better than others. It is not, and never has been, an evil empire as some say.

    Now, doesn't matter if you disagree with me, that is fine. Each to their own.

    It is very similar with the current trend to hate 'industrial agriculture' these days. Don't know what that is all about either.

    Seems like silly lines drawn in the sand, demonizing some entity that one doesn't understand or doesn't like.

    Very little fact or thought behind such messages like this.

    If you ask me is all.

    Walmart pays better than the stores downtown, and charges less for the product. That will be good for people living here, and draw more people to the town. Those are some facts.

    Don't know about any of the rest. Seems odd to me.


  6. Caelma

    Caelma Well-Known Member

    Mar 7, 2005
    I personally know someone who
    babysits for a family of 4 (turned 5 when she got
    knocked up, not married)
    The state pays her child care
    which is almost what she makes in month.
    She works at Walmart. :no:
    Why not just pay her to stay at home with her
    own kids.
    Why not dump her A** when she had the 5th kid
    un married, on a public program. Her other kids were
    already in school fulltime :rolleyes:
    And we live in a state where the state min wage is like
    $2. an hour over fed min

    Your tax dollars at work :rolleyes:
    Have a job, let the boyfriend live with you.
    Have another kid when the others are already in school
    get section 8 housing
    and the government will pay your 1500 or so child care bill :rolleyes:

    OH and Paul, I don't know where you're getting your facts from but
    I know several folks who currently work or have worked at Walmart
    and NONE of them make $10. an hour.
    Our state min if over $7. an hour
  7. slimecoat

    slimecoat Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Why dont we get to the point. Walmart sells cheap, plastic crap for incrediblely low prices. The other day I saw a pack of 3 steak knives for 69 cents. Now tell me; do you think that those knives are any good?
  8. tsdave

    tsdave Grand Marshal

    Nov 3, 2002
    Doesnt this thread belong in General Chat ?
  9. tamilee

    tamilee Well-Known Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Hi Mike D;
    I do not like Wally world and its treatment of workers and the ridiculously low wages and lack of benefits. I hate going into the store..

    I do not like Wally world and its treatment of workers and the ridiculously low wages and lack of benefits. I hate going into the store...

    I do not like Wally world and its treatment of workers and the ridiculously low wages and lack of benefits. I hate going into the store..

    I do not like Wally world and its treatment of workers and the ridiculously low wages and lack of benefits. I hate going into the store, BUT having said that What is the alternative? Other than convenience stores there is no other place in my county to shop.
    Before Wally World there were several local stores that charged outrageous prices for their merchandise. I paid $8.77 for a plastic laundry basket in a department store back in 1984. That was the cheapest! The one I wanted was a little larger, made of plastic and sold for $12.77 and the largest was $17.77. Cereal was $4.99 a box. At Wally World the same cereal NOW sells for under $3.00/box, 21 YEARS LATER!. Toilet Paper sold for about $5.99 for a 4 pack. I can buy 12 rolls for that price. The owners of these stores were wealthy also, they snapped up land and now have millions because they obtained partners and built golf courses. Their wealth came at the expense of and detriment to the quality of life of those in this area. Back then jobs were few and far between, and paid minimum wage. What was minimum wage back in 1984? Like maybe $4.25/hour? That meant that a local person would had to have worked over 2 HOURS to buy that little laundry basket. The people in this county flocked to Wal-Mart as soon as it opened and exacted their revenge for the over-inflated prices they had paid in local stores for years. These store owners didn't play by the rules either. The same families who owned the 7 or 8 department stores in my county also owned the stores by the same name all over the state. They could charge whatever they pleased because there was NO competition. If one store charged $4.99/ box for cereal they ALL charged $4.99/box for the same cereal.
    What about Christmas? In the 1980's these local stores sold cheap plastic toys with paint that scraped off when a child played with them for MORE money than Walmart sells toys for NOW and Wal Mart toys are a better quality.
    I used to see children BEGGING their parents for cereal,milk, and fresh fruit and watched as the parents bought cheaper less healthy food, like bologna, pasta, canned milk and Little Debbie's breakfast cakes. I once saw a child who danced and cheered and told everyone that his mother was buying cheese and fruit. This little chap was way too thin and unhealthy looking. This REALLY bothered me but one thing you do NOT do in the South is interfere with "family".
    I realize that the business practices of this corporation leave a lot to be desired but at least the local people can afford to eat AND pay their light bill.
    Does anyone have any CONSTRUCTIVE ideas or thoughts?
    It's easy to feel sorry for people overseas when your own family has plenty. But if it were you and you had to buy junk food because you couldn't afford healthy food or if you had to choose between buying your children school clothes OR paying the lightbill ,which would you choose?
    Before anyone goes off on a tirade; I homeschooled but most didn't. I was the FIRST homeschooler in my county. I had a garden but many people didn't or couldn't. Many couldn't because the seeds sold locally were of poor quality and/or marked for the previous year or several years back.
  10. dalilies

    dalilies Well-Known Member

    Mar 23, 2005
    I've seen Walmart drive all the small guys out of business in one of the little cities near me. That and I can't find merchandise made in the USA there, are the reasons I avoid shopping there. Used to be, they would buy American if at all possible. That stopped when the founder died.

  11. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

    May 12, 2002
    In beautiful downtown Sticks, near Belleview, Fl.
    This thread does not belong in General Chat, that is the place where hideing your head in the sand to all is to often happening. Wal Mart (ie, China Mart) is destroying America, with political help, it is all part of the New World Order crap that our worst president ever is leading us towards. Only now New World Order is renamed, Transision Something from his last speech. Its time to take the reigns again, away from the politicians, by what ever methods are necessary.
  12. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

    Sep 13, 2003
    Whiskey Flats(Ft. Worth) , Tx
    ..................Boy , Do I ever AGREE with this !! We need to dump all the Lobbyists in Boston Harbor and take our country back from WM , Visa , M.Card , and etal's who are trying to completely run our lives with the Help of our elected Lobbyists in Congress as well as the White House , fordy.. :grump: :bash:
  13. tsdave

    tsdave Grand Marshal

    Nov 3, 2002
    Last i checked this forum is called "Homesteading Questions".

    Yes wal-mart is squeezing out all the competition .....

    Where i live, next to the super wal-mart they built a strip with
    Target, Staples, Lowes, They are just finishing up a Sears Grand,
    and just opened a Kohls. Thats not to mention the many Dollar Generals,
    which provide alot of the basics. And a bunch of other stores I never

    Personally i prefer the Dollar General, and the local grocery store. Its about 5 miles closer. And much less crowded.

    My girlfriend works at wal-mart, has for 3 or so years. Makes over 8/hr and
    has insurance (she pays some for it) , as a cashier. Thats not bad for this

    I told a bunch of people about the tech-bubble in '99. People thought i was
    nuts. Well here goes again, I believe wal-mart is gonna have hard fall, as
    sears-kmart , target, and other competators chop up the higher end, and
    wal-mart will spend too much to stop them, instead of just concentrating
    on the low end that made them.

    Again this thread doesnt belong here.
  14. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

    Aug 30, 2003
    TSD, do you think Wal-Mart will have any "softer" of a fall once they finish lobbying to begin operating financial institutions (banks) as they are currently doing?

    Less than a year ago, Sears and K-Mart were two distinct struggling entities on their own way out the economical door thanks to competition. Now, they have emerged as one of the more formidable retail operations - assuming they can iron out their contractual wrinkles and don't lose any more big name products like Nike shoes, etc. Personally, I don't care for Wal-Mart either for several reasons - cheap carp definitely being on the list. The company also appears to have some ethics and first amendment problems as well. Between the several hundred illegal aliens that they employ and the censored albums and movies that they sell I have to wonder just how big of a force the company is becoming in Washington and just how long it will be before they being affecting our daily lives via policy influence, etc - if they aren't already. If the company is large enough to influence both the music and movie industries in the United States what else are they dictating? How much longer before all of our shopping from grocery to clothing to lumber etc is done in one place controlled by one company?
  15. Caelma

    Caelma Well-Known Member

    Mar 7, 2005
    I don't mean to sound rude :D
    But I don't remember anyone voting you in
    the "HT Thread Inspector" :no:

    It's America, you are free to skip any thread you want.
    Don't force yourself to read this on our account.
  16. luckypabst

    luckypabst Active Member

    Oct 16, 2004
    Lone Pine, CA
    So long as Americans demand low prices there will be someone there to fill that demand. No matter that the owners are getting rich - that's a perk of our capitalist ways - you can't supply cheap goods and at the same time pay living wages that support the way most of us choose to live.

    Lose the unions, lose the demand for rock bottom pricing. Consumers need to be content with modest wages and not having every single thing their mind desires.

  17. stonefly71

    stonefly71 Well-Known Member

    Apr 14, 2003
    My wife used to work at Wally world. She drove 26 miles one way to get there and when she left she was making just under 11 bucks an hour. As a cashier Her part of health insurance was 500 bucks a month. She had bought into there stock program which they matched dollar for dollar. She ended up quiting after our son was out of the hospital as he was 12 weeks early and the insurance we had paid all of his 81 days he spent in the children's CC unit. Some folks like it some don't it's your choice to shop there or not but with the money folks are making now and days most can only afford to shop where they get the most for there hard earned money. We buy some things from there but most we buy from other places the only reason we shop there is that we don't have to drive to 2 or 3 different stores to get everything we need. And we only go there late at night when all the other folks are home in bed. As for things being junk that goes with all the stores as WW has the same things as the other stores do just they but it in bulk and make more off of it. I'd rather work at WW then where I use to work before getting hurt on the job and that was JC Penney's as they don't care about there employees one bit. Or I wouldn't be fighting them to get my back fixed for the past 4 yrs now. Sorry for the rant but people have to go where they can afford to shop. And if folks don't like the store they don't have to shop there let them spend there money someplace else where the cost is way to high. IMHO. Later Matt
  18. Hollie

    Hollie Well-Known Member

    Apr 20, 2005
    I don't see what all the fuss about wal-mart is.
    If they are selling things for cheaper and they have things you can't get anywhere else nearby then why not shop there? If they treated their employees so badly then the employees wouldn't be working there (they're not slaves, they filled out the application willingly). Wal-Mart must be straight legally or they wouldn't be in business, I am sure if any of you owned Wal-Mart and were making $ like that you would not be complaining about it. If other stores can't keep up with their prices then maybe they should make sure thay have better quality products to compete. Not every business succeeds, that is just the way it goes. I personally don't like wal-mart, there is plenty of other stores a lot closer with reasonable prices and I don't particularly like driving to the very back of the lot to get to an empty parking spot. I don't like having a shopping cart with me either because I can't get past all of the people (like a traffic jam only with a cart). I always have to wait in line forever as well so I wont go there if I don't have enough items worth the 20 min drive, finding parking, getting past all the people. As for the towns that don't have any stores nearby, I don't see why people arent glad that Wal-Mart is there because now they can save money if they shop there. I am sure it is not as crowded as the one near me. Why shop at the store downtown and pay extra when you can save money buying it at Wal-Mart? Why not just benefit from Wal-Mart instead of complain about it? Let Wal-Mart workers speak for themselves, if I heard a Wal-Mart worker complaining about their job, I would tell them to get a new one. Wal-Mart is giving lots of people jobs and low prices. If you can't beat em', join em.
  19. tsdave

    tsdave Grand Marshal

    Nov 3, 2002
    This thread has absolutely nothing to do with Homesteading. And sounds like the drivel usually found in general chat. Oh , yes it is America, so feel free to skip any of my posts as well.

    as a side note:

    Dark days at Wal-Mart; bright times for Target

    "Shares of Wal-Mart fell 95 cents, or 2 percent, to $47.65. Before Thursday, they had dropped 11 percent in the past year compared with an 8.8 percent gain for Target. Shares of Target rose 60 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $48.80."
  20. mikell

    mikell Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2002
    South West MI
    Many of the K Mart /Sears stores (485 I Think) will soon be reopening as Sears Essentials with basically the best sellers fron both companies. Some K Marts will start carrying the best sellers from Sears, tools, lawn care ect. And yes I have inside information.