Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Arkansas Archipelago

Tulsa World (online edition) July 3, 2010: Wal-Mart Stores' chief merchandising officer John Flemming is leaving the company August 1, after 10 years, the world's largest retailer said Friday.

They say John is leaving his zillion dollar a year no-work job in order to spend more time with his family.

In other news (ABC News business unit), July 2, 2010: Wal-Mart is paying it's starting employees in Chicago $8.75 per hour. This works out to $13,360 a year gross, before taxes and before they spend anything on insurance if they feel they need any insurance. (Wal-Mart doesn't pay for insurance for the regular serfs.)

For 3 years now I haven't been able to find any manufactured goods sold by Wal-Mart that weren't made in Communist China. Not to be inflammatory or mean to cause more misunderstanding to well up against the misunderstood corporate sweathouse.

Incidentally, Wal-Mart CEO Michael Duke's $35 million a year salary comes out to$16,826.92 per hour, more in an hour than they pay their hourly wage workers in a year to support their families.

Since these wages are below the poverty line in the U.S., the slack is made up by the U.S. Government paying welfare benefits and food stamps to Wal-Mart's employees. Not to mention what happens if they or their children get sick. Maybe you already know where the U.S. gets the money to pay for this.

Wal-Mart says it is looking to open 500 more stores overseas this year. It seems to be rubbing its hands together at the prospect of expanding in India, hoping, probably, to pay less than $1 an hour. It is asking the U.S. Government to bully the Indian Government into changing it's laws so it won't have to comply with Indian law, and to thus be able to help the Indian people faster.

Obama says his wife Michelle no longer sits on the board of that pickle company that has Wal-Mart as it's biggest customer. Whew. Thank god for that. So Wal-Mart DOES buy American if the PR is right.

As usual, I could go on, but, as usual, what the hell good would it do? You aren't going to be asking these kinds of questions of political candidates this November, anyway. Right?


  1. Have you ever talked to a Walmart employee? I have known (and still know) literally dozens and I haven't met a disgruntled employee yet (though I'm sure some exist). I haven't seen that kind of job satisfaction among high paid engineers - I don't know how they manage it.

    If minimum wage is too low to survive, then Wal-Mart isn't the problem because there are plenty of employers today (thousands of them) that pay minimum wage, too, in fact just about any retailer out there.

    By all means, let's change minimum wage to one that's livable, but I'm unimpressed with the fingerpointing that villifies one employer (who, gasp, is going to provide 500 more stores worth of jobs when jobs are so needed) and leaves everyone else blameless when your normal mantra is a call for businesses to be left alone to make money.

  2. Our local, turned national supermarket chain, which started as a farmers co-op, "Associated Dairies", then "ASDA", was well regarded, but a few years back it sold out to Wal-Mart. A dark day for retail indeed. I don't go in there, because I object to having to go half a mile across the store to find a pint of milk.
    And I don't want to buy a chinese-made television.

    The workers are all called something levelling, like "colleagues".
    I suspect there are still chiefs and indians.

    Their CEO will not be getting any richer on my spend.



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