Wednesday, December 09, 2015

American Companies & American Dreams

Edd Doerr focuses on a NY Times story " Walmart’s Imports From China Displaced 400,000 Jobs, a Study Says" , dated Dec 9 that reports on a new study showing that between 2001 and 2013 Walmart, the US’s largest retailer and importer, “eliminated or displaced 400,000 jobs in the estimate by the Economic Policy Institute, a progressive research group that has long targeted Walmart’s policies.

The jobs, mostly in manufacturing, represent about 13 percent of the 3.2 million jobs displaced over those same years that the study attributes to the United States’ goods trade deficit with China. Walmart’s Chinese imports amounted to at least $49 billion in 2013, according to the study, which was based on trade and labor data. Over all, the United States’ trade deficit with China hit $324 billion that year.”

But that’s not all, the Walmart “charitable” foundations have been pouring many millions of their dollars into expensive campaigns
to undermine church-state separation and public education throughout the US.See also "5 Reasons Shopping at Walmart Makes You a Scrooge This Holiday Season"

Is it too much of a stretch to say that shopping at Walmart is a subversive activity?

As noted in the Scrooge article:

Walmart doesn't support American business.
While the company proudly boasts and encourages shoppers to "Buy American," the majority of the company's goods are made outside of the United States and often made in sweatshops. When you buy something at Walmart, you are not buying American.
2. Walmart creates more poverty than jobs.
When a Walmart store comes to town --  it isn't the economic golden child the company's PR machine would like you to believe. In fact, a study done by the Northwest Community group estimates that a Walmart opening up in a local town will actually decrease the community's economic output over 20 years by an estimated $13 million. It also estimates that Walmart will cost the community an additional $14 million in lost wages for the next 20 years. This translates to communities being worse off in the long run when Walmart strolls into town. When you shop at Walmart, you are not creating jobs.
3. Walmart's jobs are poverty jobs.
This year numerous studies released expose Walmart's poverty wages and the corporation's willingness to place that burden on taxpayers -- not the company. A report by Wisconsin's Democrats looked at how to quantify Walmart's cost to taxpayers in that state. At a minimum, Walmart workers in the state rely on at least $9.5 million a year to subsidize medicaid for workers. If these poverty level wages were raised to $10.10 an hour it would create 100,000 new jobs in the overall Wisconsin economy, not to mention adding another $13.5 billion to the overall economy. When you shop at Walmart you support poverty wages.
4. Walmart fires workers illegally.
Walmart has a long history of violating workers' rights far beyond mistreatment. The National Labor Relations Board found that Walmart has violated the rights of workers by "unlawfully threatened, disciplined, and/or terminated employees" for "having engaged in legally protected strikes and protests" and "in anticipation or response to employees' other protected concerted activities." In essence  --  Walmart not only encourages its managers to bully employees who want to speak out about unfair practices, they will also fire you if they find out you're planning a strike. When shopping at Walmart you support their anti-worker practices.
5. Walmart is a JOB KILLER. 
We've touched on how Walmart promotes itself as a company that values made-in-America products while their products on its shelves are largely produced overseas and in sweatshops. We've highlighted how Walmart relies on subsidies by the federal government to legally pay their workers poverty wages. We've even exposed Walmart for illegally firing its workers who plan to strike or threatening their jobs to keep the workers from speaking out. All of this adds up to Walmart costing us an estimated 196,000 jobs  --  many of them manufacturing jobs between 2001 and 2006. To prove the power Walmart has in the job market  -- each store opened destroys almost three local jobs for every two it creates. When you choose to shop at Walmart you don't create jobs.

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