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Is Wal-Mart Destroying America? Facts About Wal-Mart That Will Absolutely Shock You

America absolutely loves Wal-Mart.  100 million customers visit Wal-Mart every single week in this country.  But is Wal-Mart good for America?  That is a question that most people never stop and ask.  Most of us love shopping in big, clean stores that are packed with super cheap merchandise, but the truth is that Wal-Mart is destroying America in a lot of ways.  As you will see below, Wal-Mart has destroyed tens of thousands of small businesses and countless manufacturing jobs over the past couple of decades.  Wal-Mart has become a gigantic retail behemoth that sells five times more stuff than any other retailer in the United States.  Unfortunately, a large percentage of all the stuff sold at Wal-Mart is made overseas.  What that is costing the U.S. economy in terms of lost jobs and lost revenue is incalculable.  But Wal-Mart is a perfect example of where our economic system is headed.  Our economy is becoming completely and totally dominated by highly centralized monolithic predator corporations that ruthlessly crush all competition and that will stoop to just about anything in order to cut costs.  In the future, will we all be working for gigantic communal entities that funnel all of the wealth and economic rewards to a very tiny elite?  That sounds very much like how communist China works, and red-blooded Americans should want no part of that.  America is supposed to be about free enterprise and competition and working together to build up this country, and Wal-Mart is destroying all of that.

The following are 20 facts about Wal-Mart that will absolutely shock you....

#1 The average U.S. family now spends more than $4000 a year at Wal-Mart.

#2 In 2010, Wal-Mart had revenues of 421 billion dollars.  That amount was greater than the GDP of 170 different countries including Norway, Venezuela and the United Arab Emirates.

#3 If Wal-Mart was a nation, it would have the 23rd largest GDP in the world.

#4 Wal-Mart now sells more groceries than anyone else in America does.  In the United States today, one out of every four grocery dollars is spent at Wal-Mart.

#5 Amazingly, 100 million customers shop at Wal-Mart every single week.

#6 Wal-Mart has opened more than 1,100 "supercenters" since 2005 alone.

#7 Today, Wal-Mart has more than 2 million employees.

#8 If Wal-Mart was an army, it would be the second largest military on the planet behind China.

#9 Wal-Mart is the largest employer in 25 different U.S. states.

#10 According to the Economic Policy Institute, trade between Wal-Mart and China resulted in the loss of 133,000 manufacturing jobs in the United States between 2001 and 2006.

#11 The CEO of Wal-Mart makes more in a single hour than a full-time Wal-Mart associate makes in an entire year.

#12 Tens of thousands of Wal-Mart employees and their children are enrolled in Medicaid and are dependent on the government for healthcare.

#13 Between 2001 and 2007, the value of products that Wal-Mart imported from China grew from $9 billion to $27 billion.

#14 Amazingly, 96 percent of all Americans now live within 20 miles of a Wal-Mart.

#15 The number of "independent retailers" in the United States declined by 60,000 between 1992 and 2007.

#16 According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Wal-Mart spent 7.8 million dollars on political lobbying during 2011.  That number does not even include campaign contributions.

#17 Today, Wal-Mart has five times the sales of the second largest U.S. retailer (Costco).

#18 The combined net worth of six members of the Walton family is roughly equal to the combined net worth of the poorest 30 percent of all Americans.

All over the country, independent retailers are going out of business because they cannot compete with Wal-Mart and their super cheap Chinese products.  Often communities will give Wal-Mart huge tax breaks just to move in to their areas.  But what many communities don't take into account is that the introduction of a Wal-Mart is often absolutely devastating to small businesses....

A study of small and rural towns in Iowa showed lost sales for local businesses ranging from -17.2% in small towns to -61.4% in rural areas, amounting to a total dollar loss of $2.46 BILLION over a 13-year period.

When we buy stuff made by people working for slave labor wages in China, we destroy good paying American jobs and we make America poorer.  This is a point that I have tried to make over and over.

Wal-Mart often tells one thing to the public and then does another thing in private.  Sadly, the truth is that Wal-Mart does not care about U.S. manufacturing jobs.  Wal-Mart just wants to get products as cheaply as they possibly can, and most of the time that means getting them from China.

Just check out this first-hand testimony from an 81-year-old retired apparel manufacturer....

I was president of the Southwestern Apparel Manufacturers Association. There was a meeting sometime between 1985 and 1990. Walmart had contacted our organization and asked if they could meet with us at our beautiful Apparel Mart we had here in Dallas, which has now been razed, because all the independent merchants don’t exist that used to come to it. Two people from Walmart came down and they said they were going to be sourcing goods from overseas and we would have to meet those prices for consumer products and to get ready for it—we are going to be sourcing the world. Walmart was the only company that came out and said this.

It was sort of shocking: I was selling them some merchandise at the time. On the back of their trucks it was saying “Bring it Back to America!” They had the big “keep it in America” program going at that time on the big signs in the stores. Meanwhile when I reminded the buyer of that, she told me, “that is just for domestic consumption, we’re going to buy at the cheapest we can anywhere on earth.”

As I have written about previously, the United States has lost more than 56,000 manufacturing facilities since 2001.

We are losing millions of good jobs that cannot be replaced.  If you can believe it, the United States has actually lost an average of about 50,000 manufacturing jobs a month since China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.

Last year, the U.S. trade deficit with China was the biggest trade deficit that one nation has had with another nation in the history of the world, and Wal-Mart played a huge role in that.

In fact, Wal-Mart has actually been forcing some U.S. manufacturers to pack up and move overseas.  The following is from a recent article by Amy Traub....

Walmart’s market power is so immense that the even the largest suppliers must comply with its demands for lower and lower prices because they cannot afford to have their goods taken off its shelves. Companies that used to manufacture products in the United States, from Levi’s jeans to lock maker Master Lock, were pressured to shut their U.S. factories and moved manufacturing abroad to meet Walmart’s demand for low prices.

Unfortunately, the vast wealth that Wal-Mart is sucking out of our communities is not put back into our communities.  The profits are funneled out to Wal-Mart executives and shareholders.  We may enjoy the low prices, but very little of the money that we give to Wal-Mart gets recycled in our local areas.

In the old days, you could actually support a family selling electronics or running a general store.  But you can't support a family working at Wal-Mart.  The vast majority of the jobs that Wal-Mart creates are very low paying.  Large numbers of Wal-Mart employees are actually on welfare, and this is part of the reason why we have seen such an explosion in the number of the working poor in America.

At this point, more than 40 percent of all jobs in America are low wage jobs and the middle class is rapidly disappearing.

If we do not support American jobs and American manufacturers they will continue to go away and the welfare rolls in this country will continue to explode.

There is not going to be any prosperity in this country without jobs.  Unfortunately, most Americans simply do not understand how good jobs are being systematically destroyed in America every single day.

The path that America is headed on today is only going to end in complete and total disaster.  We are being transformed from a wealthy nation into a poor nation.  In the end, we will be dominated by a very tiny elite and everyone else will either be among the working poor or will be totally dependent on the government.

Our system is supposed to be about open, honest competition.  But that is not what Wal-Mart is about.  Wal-Mart is about crushing small businesses and manufacturers here in America and getting us all to buy their super cheap Chinese-made goods.

So what do all of you think about Wal-Mart?  Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below....

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  • T in TX

    Michael, your blog is NOT yesterday’s news. I appreciate your hard work and faithfulness to keep us updated.

    • Michael

      Thank you for saying that :)

      Michael

  • Donald Wilson

    The goal of the new world order is to ultimately destroy the U.S. bring it down and spread the wealth to other 3rd world nations. Good luck.

  • Gary2

    I bought all of Reagan’s shtick about “trickle-down.” Wish I had known then what I know now. We’ve been lowering the MARGINAL tax rates on the 1% since the Eisenhower administrations.

    Top Marginal Tax rates 1916 – 2011

    http://www.whereistheoutrage.net/wordpress/2012/03/08/marginal-tax-rates/

    NOTHING ever “trickled down.” The 1% just used those tax breaks to buy both parties and the media.

    Billionaire Nick Hanauer:

    “Raise Taxes on Rich to Reward True Job Creators”

    “……When businesspeople take credit for creating jobs, it is like squirrels taking credit for creating evolution. In fact, it’s the other way around.
    It is unquestionably true that without entrepreneurs and investors, you can’t have a dynamic and growing capitalist economy. But it’s equally true that without consumers, you can’t have entrepreneurs and investors. And the more we have happy customers with lots of disposable income, the better our businesses will do.
    That’s why our current policies are so upside down. When the American middle class defends a tax system in which the lion’s share of benefits accrues to the richest, all in the name of job creation, all that happens is that the rich get richer.
    And that’s what has been happening in the U.S. for the last 30 years. ….”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-12-01/raise-taxes-on-the-rich-to-reward-job-creators-commentary-by-nick-hanauer.html

    • John W.

      Gary,
      I must be losing my mind. For once I agree with most of what you have posted. I think I better go have myself checked into county mental health. Since Clinton brought Robert Rubin into his administration the conivance between Wall St. and govt. has gotten to the point of being criminal. The repeal of Glass-Steagal was a big mistake that they should have learned from the savings and Loan crisis which Hillary was implicated in with the Whitewater Savings scam. Wonder why Bill fired all the US attorneys when he took office? They were getting ready to indict the big Hillary. That stopped that so a bunch of flunkies took the fall for Whitewater. Read the book Inside Job, it explains what happened.

  • Larry Oldham

    Michael, did you work at Walmart once upon a time and it just didn’t work out?
    The good thing about living in the United States has always been our Capitalist Society, open competition, Free Trade and the ability to open up a business based on what you thought would make you money and help others. This is exactly what Sam Walton did many years ago. I will agree that his business plan has been greatly changed. But we still live in America. Your blog is old news of course which you know. I suppose you wanted to stir people up again so you are being redundant using old news. All of us have the ability to shop elsewhere. My parents paid Sears and Roebuck 25% interest on a Sears Card because they did not have cash money to buy us school clothes. Was it right? Doesn’t matter either way, they needed it, Sears offered it and so they did it. Same with Walmart. They will meet the competition’s price, they offer low prices, most stores give good customer service, they are clean, they have what they advertise and as noted people all over the world continue to shop there daily. Plus they are the largest employer in the United States. Tell all the unhappy people that work there to quit belly aching and go somewhere else to work. Someone will be happy to take their place. Savings and low price, isn’t that what we all are striving for? Can Walmart help it if they are giving the people what they are asking for? Then all the jealous people or people like you who want to stir something up for their blog, start chastising Walmart for their success. Shame on you. Check out what we are paying some pro baseball and football players salaries and write about how un American that is. At least the families of Wal-Mart are giving us jobs and paying taxes in our towns, and saving us money to boot. I myself appreciate Wal-Mart but then again I have no axe to grind , I am not jealous of a good entrepreneur system, and I believe in the American freedom of choice to shop where I want to shop. On the other side the article was well written, I just happen to disagree with the topic. But then again, Isn’t that the American Way?
    Larry

  • RickS

    People, get over this Walmart-bashing already. Walmart wouldn’t be but a handful of small stores in Arkansas if people didn’t find value in shopping their. No one from Walmart goes to your home and forces you to buy from them.

    Yes, they’ve put a lot of small merchants out of business. Why? Because they charge less and carry more inventory. If you think the good old days of the local merchant were so good, become one. See if people flock to your quaint little shop willing to enrich you with your high prices.

    The same goes for the Chinese merchandise Walmart carries. If no one bought it it wouldn’t be on their shelves.

    I suppose Walmart-bashing goes hand-in-hand with today’s society, where we are all the victims and someone else is always the perpetrator.

    I don’t shop at Walmart for the simple reasons that our local store is dirty, crowded, and I don’t like to wait in line for a half-hour to buy a 4-pack of AA batteries. Obviously, many of the local folks here don’t agree. That’s their choice. I respect that.

  • http://theeconomiccollapse stu johnson

    I shop at wal mart at little bit but most of the stuff I buy is made in the us. The local grocery store has pissed off a lot of people in this mostly blue collar town. There aren’t a lot of high paying jobs here and the houses are mostly small and old. So the local store gouges its own town! They have been doing well(sort of)and built more stores in more towns but they are no good to work for and continue to gouge us. I can buy a loaf of organic bread the the local coop(one small store) cheaper than the local chain store. I think that big busness in general just doesn’t really care about people, just big profits at any cost, even at the cost of treating its own workers like crap. When I go to walmart I do pretty good at buying the minimun and I see that its mostly made here. I don’t want to feed the beast but I do need some stuff so I am working on keeping my spending to a minimum. How much do we really need? I mean most of the junk that people have and buy, do they really NEED it?

  • Rodster

    I don’t have a problem shopping at Walmart. Boycotting is nothing more than symbolism and it’s going to solve the problem.

    The problem is what the Federal Gov’t has done overall to make businesses less competitive. Our economy sucks thanks to the libs. Walmart is a place where I save money.

    Now stop and think how many of those local businesses and where they are getting their goods from? That’s right, CHINA.

    As a small business owner most of my goods come from China. My OEM suppliers like GM, Chrysler and Ford are also beginning to use outsourcing from China.

    So would you rather pay me $100 to fix your car or $75 to Walmart and we are basically getting the part from the same place. ;)

    Something to think about when you remove the hate.

    • Rodster

      I meant to say it’s not going to solve the problem by not going to Walmart.

      Michael I wish you could add some sort of edit feature to the comments. :)

  • LJRich

    The Walmart factor is a combination of a lot of things. Some people simply can not afford to stop shopping there. This is the result of a snowball affect, directly caused by their existence and our nationwide outsourcing of jobs to other countries. Our National standard of living is on the decline, inflation is through the roof, if it were not for Walmart…..some people would starve and that’s no joke. Dependency on Walmart caused by…..WALMART and their ilk. This is just about not shopping there. It’s a very deep hole that some people can not yet get out of, myself included to a small degree. My community has almost no alternatives, anymore, for what all Walmart sells. We have a local grocery, and we have local shops. But, until inflation isn’t such a big factor in relation to wages, it’s almost impossible to replace Walmart. That’s how they like it and so they keep on trucking.

    Yes, they’re destroying our country.

  • Larry

    Michael,
    I believe you are partially correct. The problem however, to view it as you have will lead people to become more like the OWS movement, blaming capitalism for everything. Wal-Mart is a symptom not the cause. It’s the crony capitalism of Wal-Mart that’s a problem. It doesn’t matter how rich the Walton family is. Class warfare is not the answer.

    If Wal-Mart hadn’t used the system and those in government to get away with its unethical and possibly even illegal practices, than maybe the problem wouldn’t be so bad. Wal-Mart is more of a dangerous monopoly than Microsoft and that is a big part of the problem. Capitalism would work to remove Wal-Mart’s hold on us over time if it were not for bad political actors. People would pay more to go to stores where you actually get good customer service or where you can buy products that last.

    China is one of the biggest problems because they make crap products that self destruct in 18 months or less. Government has driven manufacturing out of this country and short sighted companies looking at price savings in China keep American or any better products from being made at comparable costs.
    I would buy better quality products and gladly pay the extra money to buy something that lasts but even at non Wal-Mart stores, all the products are from China or they are made of low quality.

    Wal-Mart prices are going up significantly and Wal-Mart is replacing many of its items with its store brand products. Soon Wal-Mart will be a place of few choices and high prices for inferior products. Sadly I believe regulations and crony capitalism will prevent true competition that could easily remove Wal-Mart from its thrown.
    Yes there is a big cost to the “low” prices. For people making very little income, avoiding Wal-Mart can come at a significant price too.

    Should we boycott Wal-Mart just to bankrupt ourselves? Like I said, I think Wal-Mart is just part of a much bigger problem. My personal solution is to do the following;

    1) Buy at Wal-Mart when I have to, to keep my family fed and clothed and to save our budget.
    2) Vote for people who will enforce the law and vote for responsible and smart trade. Free trade sounds good but when the other side plays by different rules it may not be so free after all.
    3) I’m willing to buy better products at higher prices when it makes sense.
    4) I see value in customer service and I shop at stores that are people friendly (instead of green friendly) and am willing to pay a premium for that when I can. It helps to tell these stores I shop there because the treat their employees well and it shows.
    5) I’m supportive of local business when I can but I also order quality stuff online. Online stores may not support my local economy but it may support yours.

  • janice

    Walmart!

    My son was VP of a graphic design company. He made many trips to Taiwan, China, India, Paris, Spain, Malaysia, & the  US, etc.  As “head design  hauncho”  he regularly met in person/online/tele  with manufacturers and design counterparts, mainly inTaiwan/China.  His overseas business trips included touring product manufacturing plants and meeting with company officials…usually a VP and  design counterparts.   Routine collaboration  on  design specs/placing orders was done online & via telephone. I jokingly said, ” so you guys outsource everything” and he “yes”.  His company only maintained a small office and warehouse facility.    He spoke of  trips to Walmart headquarters in Utah. It is like a hugh city!   Companies set up satellite  offices on premises to always be near Walmart.  His company had someone assigned there to insure product placement/purchases by Mother Walmart.  No manufacturer of goods  can conduct business without them in order to have a larger product placement foot print.   Walmart doesn’t come to them..they must go to Walmart.  No one can compete with them and remain in business.   All sorts of businesses do Walmart’s bidding in order to sell products.  No one is concerned with where the products are made. As long as Walmart orders their products… they are guaranteed to make money anywhere in the world!!

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/is-wal-mart-destroying-america-20-facts-about-wal-mart-that-will-absolutely-shock-you Reed Roth

    This article is an attack on success.

    Remember when Sears dominated? Yeah, it really wasn’t that long ago. There is no such thing as a perpetually dominant department store. The marketplace is always changing.

    Relax people. Profit margins on groceries are 1-4% so look for amazon.com to knock Walmart back a few notches within the next few years.

  • janice

    Sorry Michael…Walmart headquarters is in Bentoville,, Arkansas.

  • Gerry Mander

    I can’t believe you would say anything against this beloved icon of American consumerism! They’re a big help to struggling American families who need their low, low prices just to get by. Why, I got the Mondo-pak of Floor-wipe mopping system refills for only $9! They’re $10 at Target! And I bought my family’s favorite Captain Ahab fried fish fillets, that I only have to heat up in the oven, and it was 23 cents cheaper than it was at Krogers. I stock up on our favorite brands of chips, soda and cookies every time I go because WalMart sells them cheaper than anyone else does. Because I care about my family’s health, I also buy WalMart’s organic bagged iceberg lettuce salads, apples and bananas, and I even switched to the healthy brown bread…and it turns out that it tastes just like white bread!

    Why, my last trip, I saved enough to buy a Harajuku-Girl doll that my daughter saw on tv and kept begging for! She was so happy for an entire week, until it broke. Thanks WalMart, for helping me make my little girl happy!

    ….

    Americans love to consume. They want what they want, they want it now and they want it cheap. They don’t care if they’re getting good value. They don’t care if they’re getting cheap prices on the backs of mistreated, underpaid WalMart “associates” and at the expense of laid-off American workers who once produced the quality products that the whole world aspired to own.

    Hundreds of millions of American believe that cheap prices are the key to the good life, and they are the demographic WalMart serves with worthless, overpriced, unnecessary junk. Of course WalMart’s version is cheaper than the same thing at Safeway, because WalMart’s version is pre-packaged-only, low-quality, nearly-expired, bulk-produced, only-for-Walmart. To save money on spoilage, WalMart often stocks only a few, generic, low-nutrition varieties of perishable foods. Their idea of a green vegetable is bagged iceberg lettuce, and of a nutritious entree is frozen fried fish that is 75% oil and flour by weight. They sell 3-month-old cream cheese for a few cents less than the stores that sell it fresh. WalMart’s produce selection may be skimpy, but the junk food aisles are abundantly overflowing. There’s chips, ice cream, candy, and cookie choices galore!

    What WalMart doesn’t sell is anything of genuine value. Where are the pants that last 100 washings? Where is the toy that is handed down to your grandchildren? Where are the traditional vegetables that your Italian grandmother would introduce to your children – if only she could find those vegetables anywhere?

    100 million Americans a week happily go to WalMart and buy things they’d be better off without. I gladly give WalMart its share of the blame, but nothing will change until Americans understand that the way to save is to buy good quality versions of what you need, and no more.

  • Brent

    Amazing how many people resent success in competitive markets. You really think we’d all be better off with high prices and only uncompetitive mom and pop stores to choose from?

  • Jo Ellen Ringer

    I recently watched a tv documentary on all the things COSTCO is doing right, supporting their workers with high pay and they get loyalty in return. They also carry high quality merchandise at fair prices.
    While I am sure many of their goods are made in China, they are an alternative.
    I live in Idaho. Many rural people make a trip every 2-3 months to a Costco to load up.
    Unfortunately, the rural community I work in chooses Walmart all the time because of their prices. I do NO shopping there and always explain why to my rural friends. It does not change their behavior.

  • Lou Mickley

    Why all the whining on this thread? If you don’t like Wal-Mart, change it by not shopping there. If you do like them, shop there. Vote with your dollars. I like small businesses, and will shop there when I can. Sometimes Wal-Mart makes sense for me too. Wal-Wart beat Sears/K-mart through better execution. Capitalism at its best. When big retail competes, we all win. The only thing I see broken is all the knuckleheads that can’t afford a full grocery basket lining up at Wal-Mart on black Friday to get the first 50″ flat screen TVs.

  • http://theylaughedatnoah.blogspot.uk Sackerson

    I’ve tried to draw a picture of this process, which is not necessarily beneficial to ordinary Chinese either:

    http://theylaughedatnoah.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/how-system-works.html

  • patriot alice

    It’s not Wal-Mart, Ceiling Mart, or Floor Mart that is destroying America. Maybe it’s The Economic Collapse Blog that is destroying America with all of it’s negative outlook on everything and everybody..America will survive it all, we have the brightest minds running the country, with some exceptions of course….

    • Cinderella Man

      Wow thems some good drugs youre on!! We have the brightest minds running the country!? ROFLAMO!!!!

      • Cinderella Man

        ROFLMAO!!

    • MinBooger

      You’re kidding, right? :O

  • Fred

    Michael,
    What – You didn’t like my original comment pointing to your obvious double standard and hypocrisy. A Walmart add on your website means you condone what goes on in China as much as those of us you bash for shopping there. How about you take the plank out of your eye before you point out the speck in the eye of everyone else.

    • Michael

      Fred:

      I am not running a Wal-Mart ad.

      At various times the ad networks that I am running may display an ad for Wal-Mart based on the algorithms that you are running. The ad networks may believe that you want to see an ad about Wal-Mart based on the fact that you are looking at an article about Wal-Mart.

      Michael

  • Old Man

    Is Walmart good for America? Why of course that depends on where you come from.

    If you are a fundamentalist capitalist, Walmart represent the epitome of capitalism – maximize efficiency to maximize return on investment.

    If you are a major shareholder of Walmart stock, you are laughing all the way to your very own bank.

    If you are workers in China where Walmart buys your stuff by the billions for penuts, Walmart must be the best thing since, well, the British imperialists dumped opium to poison the Chinese people, then declared war just to rub it in.

    And if you are Regular Joe in America, Walmart is also a very good thing. How else one can explain Walmart revenue to sweet? Of course, most of the Regular Joes have lost their jobs to China. But look, a) they deserve it because they are really lower skilled and lower efficiency than Chinese workers; a) they had a free choice not to buy knowing one day they will pay for it in lost job, but they did.

    So in the end, Walmart is very good to America. Everybody deserve what they get. It is the perfect American Dream.

    • GSOB

      Excellent

  • http://TheTGBReport Thomas Brown

    Wal Mart is not the problem. They are doing what is supposed to be done in a free market (although we don’t have a true free market) provide products and services at the lowest cost to the buyers. You are not forced to purchase products from Wal-Mart but the prices make it attractive. The true problem is the corporate welfare system and the central planning we have in terms of Monetary Policy. If the monetary system was run by free markets and not controlled by a small banking elite at the Federal Reserve we would have a more stable monetary supply as well longevity in purchasing power. Also, the government hass to stop giving away favors to companies in the form of corporate welfare. That means no farm subsidies, banker bailouts, tax incentives for moving large firms into a community. In addition an end to Federal Minimum wage laws that price folks out of the market.

    • GSOB

      Great reply you capitalist p g.
      I’m just like you.

      Oink

  • Melissa

    I shop at walmart due to the fact I can’t afford any other store. Don’t blame Walmart for bad economy fact is it’s the Government that’s brought Mercia to it’s knees.. Like Electing Both Bushes in office. CLINTON is the ONLY president that made sure the America people had a decent Pay and could actually DRIVE cause the gas price was affordable. Elect a president that will make AMERICA it’s prime job in saving instead of taken care of every other country in this world and NOT America…. BLAME YOURSELF for lack of keeping things to where we cant afford them.

    • The Claymobile

      Melissa, you need to get back on your medication!

  • Pitchfork Ready

    Nobody likes Wal Mart, even those of us that embrace Capitalism and Free Markets. It’s easy to blame Wal Mart but they are but a symptom of the disease–which is government interference–of laws, regulations, unions, and free trade agreements have destroyed our manufacturing base. The people that make and enforce and uphold the laws are the reasons this system exists and is exploited by companies like Wal Mart.

    And the fact is the people have spoken: they shop in overwhelming numbers at Wal Mart.

    I don’t like it and I believe the day is coming when Wal Mart’s business model will come crashing down not just on its own head but on ours as well. There will be a day in the not so far off future when China will stop shipping us its products because the dollar will be worthless. There will be a day when the Chinese replace the dollar with the yuan and China will replace America as the consumer capital of the world–and they will be able to buy their own shitty products instead of just making them for Americans.

    We can cry about Wal Mart but they’re not the problem: our politicians are.

  • mitch

    Given that Apple is the largest company in the world, and manufactures and assembles 100% of their ipads, iphones, imacs, etc. in China, shouldn’t they, along with all of us izombie consumers who gobble up all of their shiny, gee-whiz, gotta-have-it-now icrap as soon as it hits the shelves be at the top of the list of evil americans directly supporting all of the atrocities of the evil Chinese communist government?

    • MinBooger

      If Apple was the only computer/electronics company manufacturing in China, then yes. Difference is, Apple products are not crap and they are not cheap disposable items. Take your Apple-bashing to another blog – Gizmodo perhaps?

  • http://www.sh1ny.com Paul Blumenthal

    Current system is fascism. That’s true. But true free market economy always finishes as fascism (corporationism). That’s something that you guys don’t see. Let me give you an example:

    It is 1998. Nobody heard of web search, right? I don’t think that the term was even defined. So, obviously as nobody knew what it was, there was no Government regulation or intervention in the web search market, right? So, we have 1998 and we have 2 guys in a Garage creating Google. And thanks to the lack of regulation and lack of the Government intervention Google works out beautifully. So far so good. We have 100% pure beautiful capitalism for Google. Everybody happy. Capitalism at its finest. Now comes the part that is explained by Marx and you guys simply don’t grasp: In the year of 2010 Google sponsors a bill to regulate the market economy so its position as a monopoly for web search is secured by the law. That’s the fact bill like this has been developed by Google. Now Google bribes (aka ‘lobbies’) the House/Senate/etc and gets what it wants: if you use Google connections goes through fat and fast Internet connection. If you use something else, no matter how many times better, the law says that slower connections must be used. That’s exactly right. That’s fascism: laws created by corporations to secure their monopolistic positions at the same time empowering Government more as now it needs to eavesdrop only Google’s traffic. Everybody wins. Except for constituency that is. Fascism. In other words once those corporations grow big enough thanks to the lack of regulation and free markets THEY will regulate instead of the Government (democratically elected Government I should add).

    And I know what will you say: “Ahh.. it’s still because of the GOvernment because the Government enables this. Because the GOvernment allows bribing and lobbying to happen”.
    Well, this argument is aking to communists argumentation that communism would work great if just people could understand that they ought to be equal and not want more than their neighbor. It is the same stupid logic: oh capitalism would work great only if these stupid people would understand not to take bribes, lobby and have no special interests. It is utopia my friends. Politicians will always accept fact checks from corporations. This way corporations ultimately destroy capitalism that created them and replace it with corporationism known also as fascism. That’s the path that not only Google took, but also banks in the past – hence FED was created to secure their interests in 1917. Big Pharma, hence MedicAid and Medicare were created. And military complex hence all the wars.

    You see capitalism is self-destructing. So go there and read Marx before dismissing him as an idiot.

    Paul Blumenthal,
    http://www.sh1ny.com Founder.

  • Barn cat

    This is really an attack on capitalism. Wal-Mart pays their workforce as much as they have to in order to keep it. So does Target and every other retail store. Wal-Mart doesn’t owe everybody a job that will bring them prosperity. They outcompete inefficient mom and pop stores along with chains that aren’t as good. It’s nobody’s business what Wal-Mart pays their CEO except their stockholders.

    • Michael

      No, my article was a defense of capitalism.

      Wal-Mart has partnered with a communist regime and is using slave labor wages to undermine our capitalist system.

      Michael

    • Barn cat

      No, they haven’t partnered with them. They buy stuff. Wal-Mart doesn’t have stuff made in China in slave labor factories like Apple does. Wal-Mart buys stuff from Chinese companies like every retailer does.

      • MinBooger

        Apple isn’t the only computer/electronics company that manufactures in China, they all do. Additionally, Steve Jobs met with Obama and told him that he would be a one-term president if he didn’t do anything to bring manufacturing jobs back to America. Unfortunately, the Apple bashers leave this part out. Lastly, check out Cupertino, CA – lots of employment at Apple there. Lots of employment at Apple stores and they don’t treat their employees like disposable drones. You cannot compare the two – one is strictly retail and the other designs and develops – manufacturing is just one of the elements.

  • http://google Vicki

    Look at America, we over-purchase, we over-consume, we are getting fatter and lazier as a nation. We in America generally think that more is better, more food and more stuff. We buy stuff till it overfills our houses and our cars then we have to buy storage units to fit the overflow. We buy food till we overfill ourselves, we are a country filled with obese people, increasing illness and the cost of healthcare.
    If you don’t like what Wal Mart sells don’t buy it. If you don’t like stuff made in China, don’t buy it, if you don’t want to eat crappy food, don’t buy it. We as consumers have the loudest voice, we (who shop at Wal Mart) are the ones who have made Wal Mart successful, we are the only ones who can send the message that we don’t want what Wal Mart offers-we are not sending that message.
    If you want something different do something different, start making your own clothes, growing your own food and doing without that great gadget that will fall apart in a week, contributing to the garbage dump we call earth.

  • Janet

    I don’t shop there, never have, neither does any of my family.

    Walmart sucks. And yes, they should be ashamed of themselves, but I’m sure they’re not.

  • AndyW

    Grow up, y’all. No one forces anyone to shop at WalMart. “Everyday low prices” seduces everyone. For all the talk about “buy American” and “buy local”, most people prefer saving a few bucks and buying cheap Chinese crap at WalMart or Dollar General. Try buying hand tools, power tools, small household appliances, home electronics, etc. made in USA. Extremely difficult. Try going into any clothing store at your mall, and find clothing manufactured, not just “assembled’ in the US.

    As far as WalMart putting all the local merchants out of business, is this a LOSE/LOSE proposition? It seems to me that the consumer has greater selection of goods, at competitive prices, no questions asked return policy—I don’t remember the local 5 and 10 offering all that when I was a kid. Many local merchants are thriving, by providing outstanding service, and offering excellent product selection targeted to their local customer. No more whining by all those old businesses that refused to adapt.

  • Tatiana Covington

    Hurray for Wal-Mart and its capitalistic self-interest!

    I buy there all the time, because I choose to do so.

    Me first. I’m dead serious.

  • Karen

    I know someone who works at wal mart they told me the badge you see that they wear around there neck has a barcode in which they can be watches by cameras not even the military stoops that low, wal mart time Warner GE Pepsi coke disney and any other huge corporation are all part of the NWO they are all out to ruin your lives and they sure are doing there job well and making millions no one cares about mom and pop small stores anymore wal mart puts a chemical on there meats to preserve it for 10 to 11 days time and it is deadly to your body causes cancer and diabetes in time, I watch folks at wal mart just to see what they buy to eat 80 pre cent buy nothing but junk micro wave food a micro wave destroys the nutrition in your food you are basically eating a blob of nothing and sadly and I am not trying to be ugly but speaking the truth I see people much younger than than I am , riding the electric carts because they do not want to walk people so. Over weight they have to use crutches to move around the store, parking in handicap zones and not a darn thing wrong with them, it’s called in souther terms to Much elbo action.

  • TedF

    Since the government is involved in everything else we do, why don’t we pass a law that if you operate a retail or wholesale business in the USA then 40% of you inventory must be made in USA. Other countries impose similar requirements why not us?

  • wbill

    I have been a union worker for 35 years. when i was in my twenties, struggling with 5 children, I tried to go the extra mile and buy american, particularly cars. Then I watch the news they show a Gm plant and most of the employee cars were Toyota and honda. My next car was a Renault. We are the problem. We want high paying jobs,but don’t want to pay for others to have them. Most want health insurance, but don’t want to pay much for it. Many want govt services, but don’t want taxes. We elect those people that fairly accurately reflect those values, thue we become what we are now.

  • http://www.walmartstores.com/ Walmart Dan

    I’m Dan from Walmart’s communications team.

    The article above not only repurposes a number of myths about Walmart frequently promoted by organized labor, but also quotes a recent, error-laden blog post from another site.

    The facts paint a much different picture. Walmart helps provide jobs with an opportunity to build a career and sources a large portion of its products from the U.S.

    More than 1.3 million people choose to work at Walmart in the U.S. The average, full-time hourly wage is more than $5 higher than the federal minimum and most of our jobs are full time. We offer affordable, accessible health insurance – as low as $15 per bi-weekly pay period – and a generous 401(k) plan with a 6 percent company match, among many other benefits. Roughly three-fourths of our store management team across the country started out in hourly positions with Walmart.

    Our positive impact on the economy extends to the businesses that supply us with merchandise and services as well. Last year, Walmart spent more than $200 billion with more than 57,000 U.S. suppliers. According to Dun & Bradstreet, that helps support some 3.5 million additional U.S. jobs.

    More than half of our company’s domestic sales come from categories such as groceries and other consumable items that are predominantly sourced from U.S. suppliers. We recently committed to double our sourcing of locally grown produce.

    The customer is at the center of everything we do. Our goal is to offer low prices on the products our customers want and need so we can help them save money so they can live better. For us, it’s more than just a tag line, it’s our purpose.

    • Cinderella Man

      Wow Denial is not just a river in Egypt!! Liar Lair pants on fire! You have a nice practiced speech there buddy!!

    • MinBooger

      I would like to see the list of U.S. vendors AND the list of O.U.S. vendors please.

    • Hairy Guy

      low prices does not mean live better when that chinese junk breaks and you pay more two times instead of a little more just once.

  • http://TheEconomicCollapse Dave of Oklahoma

    Then add to that that Amazon is not paying sales tax, when every local store in every state must pay sales tax on every product it sells. How can we compete with Amazon? Why is U.S. Congress not making Amazon pay sales tax to every state where the purchase originates? I can’t complete with Amazon. Somebody must be paying congressmen very well to keep this fiasco going.

  • GSOB

    Walmart is then a stepping stone for you and not a career choice.

  • Truther

    Every war. Every military conflict since World War Two has been in vain as these wars were instigated against growth and expansion of so-called communism, yet we do business with a country, today, who’s’ previous dictators killed millions of innocent Chinese citizens.
    And you think we are liberal jerks when we don’t condone or support the hypocritical GI’s coming back and wishing them a warm welcome returning from the corporation wars our military industrial complex has created? C’mon. American’s aren’t stupid, are they? At least not in acknowledging the American peoples lackadaisical support for the military’s cause, right? Contraire! We are stupid. We support “China-Mart” and we support the cheapest retailer, despite our own economic collapse. Therefore, by default, we support communism and the ideological, political and cultural agenda the Chinese believe in. connect the dots. We care only about living cheap and ourselves individually, not the collective whole of our countrymen and beliefs. We’re doomed, and we all know it. Whereby the Romans fell, so shall we! Trust me. The best thing you can do is learn Chinese, especially your offspring. You will need it to trade soon. Touché!

  • Guest

    I have worked at Wal-Mart for the past 7 years. Thankfully I have just completed my college degree, and will soon be out of there. Just tonight, I was running 6 different service areas. (Automotive, Sporting Goods, Hardware, Homelines, and Garden Center). All while receive the pay of one person. Conditions continue to get worse. The company post work schedules 3 weeks in advance. You think you are going to get X amount of hours, so you budget and pay bills. Recently, they have been telling you the week of, “oh, changed our minds. We told you that you were going to get 40 hours 3 weeks ago, but we’ve cut you 12 hours, and are only going to give you 28 hours this week.” So now I have already budgeted, but I am short 12 hours this week. How are you supposed to raise a family or pay your bills? Those at the top of the Wal-Mart food chain keep getting richer and the backbone of the company keep getting poorer. This is not Sam Walton’s Wal-Mart. I have so many stories I could tell you about Walmart, but I took that negative energy and put it into finishing my degree. I am simply waiting for my 401K to be fully vested next month. But there are many in the company who are stuck.

  • Dave

    Look at it like this: When a company gets fat…they do anything the shareholds tell them to do…to make profits.. Even if it means going overseas. Wal-Mart is not a US success story anymore. It once was, now as our country slowly dies, we will be ‘required’ to shop at Walmart one day. The company is part of the ‘social’ system of serving the ‘state’. The money they have spent in politics…in lobbying. Just like GM, they are part of the plan. Hang on folks…..

  • DEE

    My friend works for walmart… She says she works in HELL and her boss is SATAN,…….they NEVER gaive her 2 days off in a row….Pay is lousey…You can’t complain because they will just fire you …there is always someone else just waiting for the job..There is NO job loyalty to ANY employee…..They work my friend atlate shift they schedule her to be back in 6 hours for morning shift…I THINK THEY ARE AWFUL… It is sad that people HAVE NO choice but to stay employed there and take it because there are no other jobs…The USA is going down down down big time. Very sad….

  • Kevin

    I own a company. I try to make my products in the USA. And the American factories have told me to get them in China because the EPA won’t let them make things here.

    • Bruce Bishop

      Kevin,

      The EPA, along with OSHA, EEOC, NLRB, FDA, CPSC and dozens of other government agencies, drove our manufacturing jobs out through the “back door” of NAFTA/WTO, which our government also created.

      The problem is NOT greedy capitalists, greedy unions, or greedy Walmart. The problem is our GREEDY government.

      Bruce Bishop

      • Gay Veteran

        yeah! who care if our environment if so polluted it gives us cancer? or if corporations can get away with a horribly unsafe work environment?

  • Joseph

    The Left hates Wal-Mart because it has actually done what the Left has always promised but rarely delivered – improving the quality of life for the masses. Yes, small businesses have gone under because they can’t compete – but lay that blame where it belongs: every government-imposed regulation and tax can be absorbed by larger entities easier than smaller ones, and thus the playing field is not level. As for our manufacturing being driven out-of-country, again, look to greedy unions and government regulations creating an unfriendly environment in our own country. As for wealth being channeled into the hands of a few “elite” – socialist drivel! Anybody can buy stock of any publicly-traded corporation (including Wal-Mart) and stake out a share of the wealth for themselves. Would love to take on the rest of the “20 facts” point-by-point but need to log off and go to Wal-Mart . . .

    • James

      Do you realize your entire argument against this article is “They should have all bent over and taken it….”? You are making the point that if American labor and small business had only played ball with Walmart and accepted lower wages, higher production, and lowered standards and quality then everything would have been just fine. And sniping at “The Left” is ridiculous. For years “The Left” have been the only ones interested in helping the people, not corporations.

    • Bruce Bishop

      Joseph,

      Brilliant! You have managed to capture the entire issue in one paragraph. See you at Walmart. :-)

      Bruce Bishop

    • ashdav

      Please explain how mass quantities of cheap chinese CRAP improves anyone’s life? I buy only from my local grocers, on sale, with coupons and WalMart can’t TOUCH the price I pay for my groceries.It does no good for people to be able to afford to buy more if that more is garbage that will end up in the landfill 10 times faster than if they paid a fair price for a quality product. The problem with America is that they have become too materialistic. Who can accumulate the most crap?? I’d rather spend my money on QUALITY than QUANTITY. I hate that store. Watched it put many local business out of business and once conversed with a WMart store managers wife. THEY WERE ON PUBLIC ASSISTANCE. What kind of employer pays it’s upper management so little that they have to rely on help from the government??

      • Bruce Bishop

        ashdav,

        Almost all of the name brand electronics, appliances, housewares, hardware and after-market automotive products are made in China. Whether you buy them at Walmart, or at Sears, Penney, Target or your local hardware store, you are buying Chinese made products. You might want to start checking the labels.

        As to groceries, only a few items come from China. Dollar General sells canned peaches from China. Walmart sells some Thai instant soups that are made in China. Those are the only two food items I am aware of. Here in Texas, most of the produce comes from Mexico, Central, and South America. Of course, when it is in season, our produce comes from local growers.

        The businesses that Walmart “put out of business” were the same businesses that put the Mom & Pop stores out of business forty years ago. It’s called progress. Walmart offers greater variety, fresher inventory, lower prices and cleaner facilities than the stores that went out of business. They also pay higher wages and better benefits than the stores they replaced.

        On the other hand, you might drive by a Walmart and notice the number of new businesses that have opened up since Walmart opened its doors. There is a new Walgreens being built one block away from one of our local Walmarts. There are dozens of new businesses surrounding both of our local Walmarts, all of which were built since the Walmarts opened up.

        As to the “Walmart store manager’s wife,” there is something wrong with your story. Walmart store managers generally earn close to six figures with generous performance bonuses. There is no way that any “Walmart Store Manager’s wife” is on “public assistance.”

        • Tlanc

          So I guess for every Walmart there should be a new Walgreens as well? Last I checked, some of the Walmarts in our area purposely lower their prices to put others out of business. Also, if Walmart is paying such great benefits and higher wages, then why does it take an hour just to get somebody to help me get something off the top shelf after 6 other employees give me the “This is not my department” line. I don’t get that at Target, JC Penney, or my local hardware store. Walmart, just like a lot of the other BIG corporations, got their hand so far in these so called government officials pockets that they can do whatever they want. Walmart builders want to destroy a nature river stream and wooded forest just to build another Walmart because the university is too far away (6 miles) from the nearest Walmart.

        • Mark Rose

          When I worked at Walmart 7 years ago, an assistant manager was being paid about $35,000/yr. If they wanted to become a store manager, they’d have to put in 60-80 hours per week. But the store managers were making well into the six figures, working fairy normal hours, so it was worth it to some.

        • Chris

          I used to work for a major television company and WalMart approached us and insisted that if we wanted them to carry our product, we would have to make a cheaper version JUST for them. It would have less features and less options. The packaging and shell all looked the same. They did this as a ploy to win over customers from Best Buy, Sears, CostCo, etc.. Consumers would save $20 by shopping at WalMart, and they would never know the difference. WalMart sells cheaper product, and deceives people into believing they are getting quality products. Next time you are in the plumbing section, grab a plunger, examine its quality and craftsmanship, note the price. Next, go to Home Depot or Lowes and look at their plunger for a dollar more… It is solid, crafted stronger, and built how a plunger should be built. You will go through 2 of any of WalMart products before you would begin to go through any other retail stores product. They are just made better than what WalMart can or will offer. It is common sense, you get what you pay for, and WalMart sells sub-par products.

    • The Claymobile

      Joseph, what is going to happen to this country when everybody is making $8.00 an hour??? Who is going to buy the new cars and new homes? Who will be able to afford to go to the doctor or dentist? The wealth IS being channeled in a few just like Michael said. And the middle class is dying, unfortunately you are to blinded by your ideology to see that! Hope you enjoy your slave-labor produced goods from China.

    • LordRhynn

      It’s a good thing you’ve got jokes Joseph, and I’ll give you credit on them. Comedy gold I tell you. It’s good because you spend half of it blaming the problem on the absence of the very socioeconomic system you later spit out as an insult, and the other half you spend on non sequitur and hasty generalization.

      See, the fact is, you cannot achieve the standardization you claim we require under capitalism. Not as long as there is privilege, greed, and individual whim to be accounted for and all three of those factors are present not only in the overseen, but in the oversight. The effects of early unfair social, educational and financial disadvantage are not something that can be expected to be overcome by the majority, especially when no real systemic change is ever put in place and as honest as purported.

      The standardization you speak of can only be achieved in the absence of reward and opportunity for individualism. That system is socialism, or more to the point, communism. So make up your mind. Is socialism a four letter word or is it not?

      As for your “piece of the pie” version of the Gordon Gecko speech, where you claim “anyone” can buy in? Let me invite you to head West and sample what the haves can do when they manipulate the market and the have-nots using their own ill gotten pieces of pie.

      It’s called Las Vegas. Built on the back of insider trading, currency and stock manipulation, and complete failure of effective oversight of the junk bond market made what it was by the likes of Drexel Burnham and other less than scrupulous Wall Street firms. Truthfully, RE-built after it was taken over from the previous haves. The Mob.

      There is no “piece of the pie” in a couple of hundred shares of these firms my friend. That’s not even licking the mixing spoon. And when the companies decide to lock in the real profits in limited stock releases and preferred stock leaving everyone else to buy common after the IPO with prices through the roof, it’s like not even being allowed into the kitchen at all.

      And that’s before we even get to whether or not the stock is worth the paper it’s printed on in the first place, as can be seen with all the suckers who bought Facebroke and now get to watch as the government and half a dozen others throw out their backs trying to protect the company and its funding banks from any accountability for that IPO train wreck.

      I’ve got a great gig for you to do your standup act next week though if you’re not busy. Kid’s party. The clown cancelled. Said he’s working a double that day at Walmart.

      • Jeff

        Well said.

        • Jeff

          for a commie! lol

    • Gay Veteran

      Joseph, you are truly a “useful idiot”

      don’t forget to lick your corporate master’s boots

      • Clay

        Stalin would be proud of people like Joseph

      • Useful Idiot

        It sounds to me like people keep making the same arguments over and over again about what America should be. The Right, The Left, The Middle, The End, The Beginning…blah blah blah and blah. I think the point concerns the fact that America should be what you want it – you are entitled to the pursuit of happiness. If nobody’s happy either way, then what exactly is wrong here? Why does it seem we are constantly at war with each other? It’s exhausting. Why don’t we just make America into the 3 countries: The Liberals, The Conservatives and the I Don’t Give a Damns then just shut up and be happy.

    • mondobeyondo

      I’m still trying to train one of my cockatiels to become a greeter and say, “Hi, welcome to Wal-Mart!”. It’s not working. All he does is whistle and chirp. Someday he’ll pick up on it (I hope). A few extra dollars a day wouldn’t hurt!

    • GSOB

      LOL

    • Ray

      Joseph, what has being on the left have to do with liking Walmart? I’m am proud to be left of the idiots who destroyed the US economy under the Bush Administration… and I love Walmart!! It has forced the competition to make their profit on the volume of total sales– instead of making a killing on every single sale!
      Why do people like you try to politicize everything and pretend that you’re smarter than everyone? Walmart bargains are something that most Americans have in common– it is not something that divides most of us. If you were half as smart as you think you are, you’d know this!

    • Winston Smith

      false Left/Right paradigm stuff…..why does Walmart have people trained to coach their employees to apply for welfare (food stamps, Medicaid,etc)?

      Is not getting people on the rolls of welfare a “leftist” thing? So, then, govt handouts, tax breaks, give-mes and welfare-Walmart is a leftist organization then……intresting, then, how the “right” defends and loves them some Walmart…..

  • Mike

    Just wondering where the computers everyone is posting from were made?

    • Michael

      You are right. The vast majority of all electronic equipment is now made outside of the United States.

      Why can’t we make cell phones here?

      Why can’t we make computers here?

      If we had significant tariffs on goods from nations that commit very, very serious human rights violations and on nations where it is legal to pay slave labor wages things would be different.

      Michael

      • Mark Rose

        I don’t think it will be too long before manufacturing will return to the US. Basically the cost of labor has risen dramatically in China, gone down in the US, and when transport and other costs of doing business in China are factored in, there’s not much savings to be had anymore.

        Some first world countries are net exporters to China, like Germany.

        Obamacare has made it really expensive for employers to have 50+ employees though, so that may delay the return of lower value manufacturing. Alternatively, manufacturers may use more automation and hire fewer people to run the machines.

    • mondobeyondo

      [excuse me for a moment while I check the bottom of my steam powered hamster driven laptop]

      Yes. It says “Made in China”.
      It gives me a sick feeling in a way. Wouldn’t be surprised at all, if Texas Instruments is now owned by a Chinese conglomerate.

  • Chinese

    I’m disgusted with the amount of the word “American” is used in the text. It is you “Americans” have been supporting “capitalism” and “free market” from what I remember(I know, not all of you). I’m sorry but this is what you get with the system you’ve all loved and praised. Now please deal with it. It is going to get worse…

    • Blah

      Nonsense. China is rapidly becoming more capitalistic than we are,and they’re reaping the windfall.

      We’re trading places with them. Their former communist country is turning into a free market and our system is turning into top-down, centrally planned communism.

      • Chinese

        I don’t see myself talking about the system in China, that’s a whole different story. The practices in China is the exact opposite of the “original” idea behind socialism(or communism), such as opposing or trying to eliminate the exploitation of working class. They are one of the centres of exploitation in the world (especially after the free market policies started to be implemented). The comment I wrote is about the system in USA (and other similar economic systems of course), one should be blind (or an ignorant american) not to see that this system is going to cause such problems.

    • Winston Smith

      capitalism, like socialism, is control by the few-either govt clogs or corporate ones, usually, one and the same in tandem……

  • BOBBI PETERSEN

    Walmart Ihave not.hing good to say
    cheep items and chemicals

  • Rusty

    Capitolism at it’s finest, may the best store win!

    • Winston Smith

      um, society is not built on a dog fight, that is a prescription for chaos……people should compete, but not dog-eat-dog, a natural outcome of Calvinism…

  • mondobeyondo

    Wal-Mart is one of the main reasons why the former John and Jane Doe’s Main Street Groceries and Supplies has a “For Sale” sign on the front of their property…as usual, it’s the little guys who get pushed out of the way, and dumped onto the street.

    Lest we forget, Wal-Mart had such humble beginnings. Sam Walton started out with one little general store in Arkansas. For the first few decades or so, all was well. But once Sam passed on, Wal-Mart morphed into this global conglomerate beast type creature, feasting on money, caring nothing about its roots. What a shame.

  • Michael

    I am afraid that I have upset a lot of people recently.

    A lot of mainline Republicans are not going to like the fact that I have criticized Wal-Mart, and a lot of Democrats sure are not going to like this article I just did….

    “The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves: 10 Ways That Obama Is Killing Jobs In America”

    http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/the-beatings-will-continue-until-morale-improves-10-ways-that-obama-is-killing-jobs-in-america

    Michael

    • K

      Michael, you have arrived. If Walmart Dan, is for real. It proves how close you were to the truth.

  • degarmo

    I think Wal-Mart is the most evilist store on earth! Every store I have ver been in has an evil presence, and everyone inside walk around in a trance, and act like cattle being herded on a ronch. I think they pipe maksed subliminal messages into everyone via the sound systems.

    Wal-Mart is probablly the throne of satan!

    • Louise in MO

      Degarmo

      Surely you jest!

      • Mischa Lecter

        Louise, allow me to let you in on a little secret. When you say, (or type) the phrase, “Surely you jest” you come off looking and sounding like someone who’s REALLY stupid, but wants to appear smart by dressing up their comment. A simple, “You must be joking” will suffice.

  • mondobeyondo

    Well folks, I’ll meet up with you at a long line at a Walmart near you, at 3:00am next Black Friday.

    Oh, you fell for that too, huh? Those 32-inch HDTV’s for $59.99 were too irrestible, weren’t they? I hear ya!!

  • George

    Walmart pays more wages than they pay in third world country’s. You folks should appreciate the fact that Walmart provides so many jobs to so many. The US is on a path towards becoming a third world country so we can expect real wages to continue to trend lower until we can eventually compete with other third world country’s. It won’t be long before folks that work in Walmart are appreciative of the jobs they now have. After all, third world living is not easy. It’s going to require some adjusting. All of you are still in denial of the fact that in the near future we will just be another banana republic. Don’t like Walmart? Don’t shop there. Who gives a crap. Eventually you won’t be able to afford to shop at Wally world either spooge.

    • DaytoDay

      I hope that was a joke…

      I mean, you’re basically saying that people should not only accept poverty but EMBRACE it…

      I don’t see it happening… Most of the people in this country walk around half cocked as it is…

      Just wait until minimum-wage checks won’t even buy a candy bar, and you expect me to believe that people are going to be begging and groveling for $10 per DAY jobs???

      Let me tell you, if it gets that bad in the US, you sincerely won’t have to worry about it… Because the country will have been long gone…

    • ashdav

      Walmart did not provide a job to the cleft lip guy with a severe speech impediment that worked at a small family owned grocery store that they ran out of business in front of my eyes. Why don’t you go spew your bull**** to that guy??? Do you have any idea how difficult ist is to get a job when you have a medical condition that prevents you from speaking clearly??? You’re an ass!

    • George

      This comment is for Day to day. What I said was no joke. The US believes its former lifestyle is an entitlement. Wake up and realize that the glory days are over. We gave away our future many years ago. Wake up. Walmart jobs are great jobs. If you got a Walmart job, work hard and try and keep this job. Most of the rest of the world would love to make 7 bucks per hour. Americans believe it is beneath them. Wake up America. You had it good for awhile but now its time for other country’s to take over the gravy train. You blew it. You are broke. You shipped all the good jobs over seas. You demanded high wages. You paid for goods with worthless currency. You do not wish to pay your debts. Time to pay the piper. As I said, working for Walmart is going to be considered a very good job very soon. Embrace your new poverty cause it will be with you for many generations into the future.

  • nafta victim

    As long as wages keep going down people will be forced pretty much to shop at walmart just because they will be the only retailer left standing. Excellent article Michael.

    • ashdav

      I do not shop at walmart. i shop the local grocer using coupons and sales. i refuse to buy rainbow collored chemical soaked crap from walmart. I will not buy clothing, bedding or anything else there either. I buy at walmart ONLY a few things I cannot get at other local sources. I shop at GYMBOREE for my child’s clothing. By shopping the clearance off season and combining sales with their Gymbucks promotions I average spending around $4 -$5 for a top and $7-$8 for pants. Won’t pay more than $10 for a dress. That is CHEAPER THAN THE CRAP THEY SELL AT WALMART. The quality is better, the clothing lasts, and I can resell it when my child outgrows it. How much clothing from Walmart gets to the resale shop?

  • Brian M.

    “Amazingly, 100 million customers shop at Wal-Mart every single week.”

    ************. The horror…

  • Gary

    There is no problem with big business there is a problem with however with government favors. I’m surprised you didn’t talk about how Walmart cheated the import export laws. It’s not easy to find if you do your research you can trace walmarts explosion from Clinton being attorney general for AR state then on to governor. They completely looked the other way while Walmart cheated the system. What other reason is there that they grew and not target etc? Same concept and products are made in china mostly..Walmart was so happy that they put Hillary on Walmarts board of directors. First female ever! (btw Hillary used to be a union bashing lawyer for Walmart! What does that tell? That her democratic views are bs!) On another note other comments are completely correct. Thanks to taxes and regulations the government makes it nearly impossible to compete. If you go back to the 1950′s we paid the highest wages in the world and produced the cheapest stuff. We ran a trade surplus for a long time. Minus the cheating I wouldn’t mind Walmart they are just playing the cards they were delt.

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog Leonard

    Be a little bit careful, Michael. Lots of people could say that you are a socialist if you don’t submit to Wal- Mart with love. In order not to be a socialist, you have to agree with the monopoly/oligopoly of Wal-Mart or others.
    I love your article about being a debt slave to the system! Both articles go together!

  • NickelthroweR

    Greetings,

    Walmart is a place for poor people to shop and work. Our town of 130,000 people refused to allow Walmart to set up shop here therefore we still have mom and pop stores and far fewer poor people as a result. Cheap goods make for cheap people.

    “Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains.”

    Thomas Jefferson

  • Basil

    There’s a very strange exchange happening, that I can observe from my perch here on the (Canadian) west coast. China’s been shipping goods to sell through Walmart; the US has been shipping money back. Now, the entire newly rich portion of China that this trade has made rich is fleeing the catastrophic environmental and social mess that this trade has left in its wake.

    The air is unbreathable, there are hundreds of demonstrations every day; so anyone who’s made any money is getting the hell out. By the million.

    There will be major changes in China, too, as a result of this mess.

  • https://www.facebook.com/TheAbandonedHouseProject Jason

    While I agree with the spirit of this article. I can also agree with other sentiments around it, such as if we made better products here in America at cheaper costs and better production rates we probably could compete. Ultimately Walmart is just working the rules to their favor and I bet any of the thousands of mom and pop places would play the same game if they could’ve to stay in business. That said, my family and I are about to be homeless for the 3rd time in 4 years. That is due to the fact that at age 42 having worked non-stop since I was 7, including to simultaneous full time jobs when my kids were toddlers, I have been unemployed or under employed for almost 4 years. I went to school and studied Medical Asst. and Phlebotomy over the last two years taking on over 2o grand in debt and still cannot find work! So let me tell you that if Walmart actually announced that they have sweat shops in China with children being beaten who don’t produce fast enough and they called and offered me a job as a door greeter I would be saying Welcome to Walmart! I daresay the writer of this article is not moving into an abandoned house on Weds July 11th like my family and I are and you can see the story about on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TheAbandonedHouseProject

  • Stephen Herbst

    Wal-Mart recently purchased Makro part of Masstores (Pty)Ltd [or perhaps Masstores (Pty)Ltd completely not sure] here in South Africa.
    Shoppers at Makro require a Makro card to make purchases. It is like a ‘passport’ which I’m sure they utilise to track shopper trends etc.
    Anyhow, after hearing about the buy out by Wal-Mart I promptly destroyed my card and gave them the finger..!!
    Wal-Mart would never have been able to do what they have done if there was consumer resistance!

  • madougl

    I was a Assistant Manager for Wal-Mart for 4 years. Its saddens me to see how the associates were treated. I was told many times that I was too nice to them. I was injured on the job from a electric pallet jack malfunction, and then was treated terrible because I was “costing the company money”. So after having to have surgery and my supervisor doing all he could to make my life hell,, I quit. I may add that the only work I missed was the week of my surgery, they made me work on crutches. I did get unemployment for acouple years even though I quit, since they went against my doctors orders. I might add that Wal-Mart doesn’t treat women in management the same as they do men.

    • Michael

      I want to thank all of the former Wal-Mart employees that have stepped forward and have posted comments on this article.

      It has been very enlightening for all of us.

      Michael

      • View from Abroad

        Hello,

        you forgot to mention the “Dead peasant”-policies Wal-Mart used to buy for their employees before this was ruled illegal.

        http://www.commondreams.org/headlines05/1102-06.htm

        As for your article: I am glad that we do not have them in Germany – they tried very hard about 10 years ago, but with their very special US-style company policies they were not able to gain acceptance, neither with their employees nor with their customers. They had to draw out with huge losses.

        • Tim

          Hello,
          as far as i can read you are from Germany and into this topic. I want to create a presentation about Walmart and maybe you have got some informatiom for me that could help me.
          My E-mail is Gaha981@yahoo.de
          Kind regards,
          Tim

        • sandradee

          true, there was a big Wal-Mart in munich a couple of years back. but suddenly there was no Wal-Mart anymore, they were gone and a big german superstore has moved in there instead.

    • Carrie

      When I worked for Walmart many times I would rarely get a break. Working through breaks, we were short staffed. Being a cashier on my feet for 8 hours, or staying late, coming in early after my shift. I worked there for a few years. I love to talk, so it was great talking to the customers. I would be working there sick even, they would make me feel guilty if I were ever sick. I now rarely shop at Wal-Mart… I would rather not give them my money.

  • Hobbit

    I have not shopped at WalMart for 10 years. Shoddy merchandise and them treating their employees like dirt were the reasons I quit going. My little town is 50 miles from a city, so I shop locally when I can to support the local merchants. Not everything can I find in my town, but I can save my errands up for a once a month trip to the city, but then I go to other grocery stores and hardware stores for my needs. I just don’t think the money most people spend on gas to go to the city is saved in the lower prices of WalMart. But they keep going and then coming back complaining about the jeans that were not sewn at the seam, etc. I have been to China and visited the factories, also the “homes” of people who work in them. Some of those people are children and earn 12 cents an hour.

  • Glenda

    IT is amazing at all the negative remarks at Walmart. There are so many people that I know, personally, who would kill to get a job, any job, and that includes Walmart. Zombies in walmart? ROFL you have to be kidding. My grandchildren and I run through walmart looking for the best buys we can find. Those clearance jeans for 5.00, you darn right I am going to buy them! Those tee shirts for the kids on clearance for 2.00 dang right, I am going to buy them. We have fun and laugh. Who cares if people don’t like it or as some do, join in.

    As Wally was growing, stores could have put them out of business, but the almighty dollar was too important and now.. Who is left but the company who was willing to take a temporary loss on somethings to keep their doors open? Might as well blame Aldis for their lower can good costs, Blame the local meat market for the better cuts of meat that I am willing to pay a little more for.

    Want to keep those little businesses in business, watch for their sales and stock up then. I do. I don’t care has the lowest price, that is where I shop and I buy the specials.. That includes Wally world.

  • Glenda

    Our walmart employees don’t complain about wages but are happy for a job. Most of the problems are the same as in any company. Personal/coworker problems. People are friendly and helpful. Most know you if you come in more than once every couple of weeks and even remember the children’s names. Merchandising monster? Get a different job then. Go to a fast food restaurant. Go work digging ditches. Go work in a meat packing plant. Then work at Walmart and complain. Criminy, everyone needs to realize that there is no perfect job!!!!!

    • Gay Veteran

      yeah, us peasants shouldn’t complain to our korporate overlords

    • A.S.

      why can’t the ceo take a 99% pay cut? i think there should be a law that no ceo can earn more than 100K per year. give the rest to the employees that break their back. i bet the ceo never worked a single day in a low-paying job his whole life!

      • A.S.

        actually if he is making around 35 million, then a max of 100k per year would be more than a 99% pay cut. still, it utterly disgusting that anyone can make that much for doing less work than the common 6.50 per hour employee.

    • THOMAS JEFFERSON

      Either your a BRAINWASHED MORON or an Internet TROLL for WALMART either way I would love to SLAP U UPSIDE YOUR EMPTY HEAD! Wake up **************!

    • Steve Barnett

      IF poor people would just realize that they could all get together and demand Wal-Mart hand over some of the profits to the employees. If the employees would strike for one week they would lose 10 billion. Just keep on shopping at that congomerate. What pisses me off is they sell consumer stuff, then have to go to groceries, then banks, hair cuts, and all the other things. Now they sell cars and soon they will have to be knocked down, because they are too big.
      I buy nothing there. I find you have to park 500 foot from the door. Then you waste so much time. I mean having to wait behind people.
      If people would just realize all they need is to grow their own garden and raise chickens, then all they need at the store is fresh fruit and veggies and toiletries. I get sick and tired of seeing fat people pushing a car full of processed junk.

  • W. R. Flynn

    Michael,

    Thank you for having the courage to point out all aspects of our tragic spiral from serving humanity as a guiding light into one of serving the darkness.

    Some elements of this sad journey aren’t readily apparent to all of us. Surrendering our once leading manufacturing base to those overseas in order to buy stuff cheaper is one of the starkest. Guiding and steering this ugly decent is Walmart.

    Empirically demonstrating their leadership role in destroying American greatness should open many eyes.

    Please, everyone, shop less and shop elsewhere.

    W. R. Flynn

  • Stephen

    I also work at Wally World and I survive because my wife has a decent paying job and the house the car not the wife’s and no credit cards are payed for. I use the job for some scratch to buy food that’s not getting cheaper and pay Property TAX and the house insurance. Also car insurance for mine and help with the heating bills in the winter.
    And I always say if you work part time be very close to where you work. 4 miles away.So between Wally World and playing music I make a living. And as someone here said that your whole check will go for just my groceries then what I have to work more hours just to pay the bills. That sucks the life out of a person. Wages being higher would be great but these retail jobs are what they are. This system is getting tighter and tighter around the neck of people and we need to break free before they pull the trap door just like they did to Sadam if you know what I mean. Love your site and Walmart is just greed at its finest.

  • walmart shoppers are traitors

    Attention wally world shoppers we have a special on American flags (made in China) today only they are .35 pesos comrades!

  • http://OgallalaAquifer Lazy Ike

    This is the central issue that is being ignored in this year’s presidential campaign. CNBC needs to break down the macro figures they regularly report with respect to the upper 20% verses the lower 80% in order to provide the public with a better idea of what it happening macro economically. There can be no increase in demand and ergo an increase in business spending if the manufacturing and service economies are continually shipped out of the USA. It affects everything because worker’s wages support things such as social security and medicare because their revenues are based on wage levels and payroll taxes which have been declining, therefore these programs are also declining.Many of the fiscal problems could be solved with increasing wage levels.

  • NorthernCanuck

    I can’t speak for the accuracy of this but I remember reading some comments several years ago by, I think, a financial analyst, who said he was amazed that Walmart was able to self-finance its own growth so rapidly from one original store in Arkansas. He seemed to think it was a financial impossiblity. Then the conversation turned to the alleged CIA drug-smuggling operations through Mena airport, Arkansas, and whether or not the huge and continuing proceeds of those operations might have been laundered through selected Arkansas businesses. As I recollect, the discussion stopped right there! Again, I can’t speak for the accuracy of any implied or actual allegations involved here, but that brief series of comments some years ago has always remained at the back of my mind!

  • tyler

    This the truth I live in a town which wal-mart has destroyed small businesses. It’s wrong people should have the ability to go out start a business and support a family. I work for Wal-mart and this is very true. The pay is terrible and moving up is very hard if ur not a favorite in a store. Small businesses need to take placement and smaller government taxes so they can start. Outsourcing to other countries should become illegal! No more buying for cheap labor and cheap prices. It’s killing this country.

  • ArizonaPatriot

    We all need to stop spouting the “Party Lines” Walmart is not evil, they are a corporation that has been given a significant competitive advantage by Republicans and Democrats. If we forced our elected representatives to level the playing field, jobs and small business’s would start coming back. We are all too quick to blame the opposite party for our woes, and if you research the money flow, it goes to both parties and the American Worker is the one who suffers. However, if we dont take action soon, it may be too late. One good example is the unemployment stats we are being fed, if you go back to counting unemployment using the same formula that we used before the Clinton Administration changed the calculations (and not changed back by Bush) our REAL unemployment is almost 19%. This is unstainable long term. There is power in numbers and we need to stop this Democrat/Republican division and throw out anyone who does not support American interests i.e. jobs, Immigration controls, stronger families etc.

  • NorthernCanuck

    Michael,

    Off-topic, but here’s another links for your forthcoming ‘food scarcity’ article:

    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/05/12579687-drought-hits-56-percent-of-continental-us-significant-toll-on-crops?lite

    HOWEVER…

    Look at the interesting comments from Australia under this ‘Russian Wheat Prices Reach Historic High’ news item:

    http://rt.com/business/news/wheat-price-export-drought-391/

  • http://caswansong.blogspot.com/ johnnygeneric

    I haven’t set foot in a Walmart for the past 10 years. They changed my oil and messed up my car. It cost me over $200. I went to Walmart to get reimbursed and they said “prove to us someone else didn’t change the oil after we did”. They wanted me to PROVE A NEGATIVE!

    Because of their greed, they have lost thousands and thousands of dollars of sales from me. Capitalism? I love it. Walmart? I HATE it!

    • Peensez

      They messed up my neighbors car too. The oil filter was not tightly replaced. The resulting leak COULD HAVE resulted in a blown head gasket, but the neighbor saw the leak and caught it beforehand.

      They also did tire puncture repair for me…and a few weeks later, the same tire was very low. The diagnosis was….”Yeah, the plug was leaking so we replaced it, but you had another puncture that we had to fix” which I doubt. They just didnt want to NOT get paid for fixing what they messed up.

      NEVER AGAIN!! I hate the place. Because of the dishonesty and lack of accountability when the mess up…the cheap crap they sell…and most especially due to the ever-present screaming kid. Always!

  • JMorcan

    I know business owners in China who say they often lose bids to WalMart because they are undercut by Chinese prisoners. Think about that the next time you feel the urge to believe lower taxes or less regulation will help the U.S. compete.

  • john

    Ok, I don’t want to give the wrong impression here but everyone is criticizing the idea of having some of our jobs lost to overseas production, (i know its not some, its a significant amount, yes i know) but what everyone seems to be forgetting is that having a significant amount of our production overseas decreases the cost for how much we pay for the goods that were produced over seas. If it raised the cost, no corporation would do it. I AM IN NO WAY TRYING TO SAY I AGREE WITH HOW MANY JOBS HAVE BEEN LOST TO OUTSOURCING, ALL I AM DOING IS GIVING THE OTHER SIDE. THE MATTER OF FACT IS THAT WAY TOO MANY JOBS HAVE BEEN LOST TO OUTSOURCING, BUT THE SOLUTION IS NOT TO COMPLETELY ELIMINATE IT, IT IS TO REDUCE IT SIGNIFICANTLY. But, with that said, if we reduce it too much prices of goods would skyrocket and none of us would be able to afford to buy anything. The solution is simply to find a nice balance. But, that is just my opinion, so feel free to disagree. :)

  • JackieG

    I have not spent a dollar at Walmart since 1999.
    I bought a chair and it broke after 10 minutes use.
    The stitching just unravelled and fell apart.
    I went to Canadian Tire bought a similar chair and it still is in use today.
    The Black & Decker appliance in Walmart is not the same one appearing in Sears.
    Cheaper cord, cheaper switches, more money spent on packaging.
    Colourful junk.

    • Ankynan

      You have to watch everything you buy there. I knew someone who bought a computer, had a problem & called the manufacturer, only to be told they couldn’t help because it was a refurbished computer. She said, no, it’s new, I just got it from WalMart. They said WalMart sold ONLY refurbished models of their brand. She checked the box, & there was NO mention of it beung refurbished.

  • Russ

    Wal-Mart should be classified as a monopoly and broken up like AT&T was decades ago. When a company has so influence it has got to go!

    • Jack

      Most logical approach at this point

  • http://www.infowars.com/ Anon Patriot

    HERE is a graphic, which shows how much larger is the U.S. Trade Deficit, in relation to China’s Trade Surplus: http://dont-tread-on.me/?p=20120 Anyone who shops at Walmart can congratulate themselves, on making the U.S. Trade Deficit far greater than China’s Trade Surplus.

  • Will Getbetter

    To all Americans I used to live in Reno Nv for 2 years, and if you think you have it bad. I now live in Canada and the local businesses up here are crooked, and crooks Canadians get raped in pricing. I can hardly wait for someone, anyone cheaper to come in and force lower prices. So many regulations in Canada the Tv is a joke and they pay double what Americans pay. The cell phones are still among the highest rates in the world. The cars are about $20 000 more expensive. taxes well add a couple of zeros to the end and that’s what is paid up here. The worst part is min wage is the same, cheap booze is non existent. so you can’t make any money, you can’t drink, and there is nothing on Tv if you can afford it. To top it all off the people are so angry no one believes in karma.

    • NorthernCanuck

      Wow! Such barely-repressed rage and anger! “You can’t make any money, you can’t drink, and there is nothing on Tv if you can afford it.” Perhaps the solutions might be, in order, 1. Get a job where you CAN make some money (learn a trade or take a college course if necessary); 2. quit drinking; 3. watch less TV. Your Canada sure doesn’t sound like MY Canada. I think we have a case of projection here, rather than observation. The economy is still good in Canada, and people generally are polite and cheerful. Except for you, apparently.

  • SMASH THE CONTROL MACHINE

    I FEEL SPIRITUALLY DRAINED AFTER GOING TO WALMART. MAYBE IM PICKING UP THE CRIES OF SLAVE LABOR AND CHILDREN SCREAMING FROM THE SHOES AND OTHER CHEAP PLASTIC JUNK THEY SELL!!Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth.LORD DO YOU HEAR THEM?? DO YOU HEAR OUR CRIES?I HAVE NO DOUBT HE DOES!! JUDGEMENT IS AT THE DOOR BABYLON AMERICA!!!But woe to you who are rich, for you are receiving your comfort in full. 25“Woe to you who are well-fed now, for you shall be hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep. 26“Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for their fathers used to treat the false prophets in the same way!!OUR FAMILY CALLS WALMART THE EVIL AXIS!!

  • http://new-terra-natural-food.com Csafarmer

    Small local businesses owners most often are active members of their communities. They often own their stores, and their homes and pay taxes and maintenance on both.

    Local business owners are little league coaches, and Girl Scout Leaders, and participants in other important community activities. They help to build parks, and libraries, and sports fields.

    A strong network of local businesses supporting and in turn being supported by their communities is what makes viable, livable communities possible.

    This vibrant network has been destroyed so that Joe Consumer can save 50 cents on a pack of toilet paper. Real good trade.

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