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Wal-Mart Is Right
King Features Online ^ | May 3, 2006 | Charley Reese

Posted on 05/02/2006 11:56:46 PM PDT by Joe Bfstplk

Wal-Mart is the only corporation in the world that I know of or have ever heard of that is hated because it is successful. What do these critics want Wal-Mart to do? Fail? Start selling $300 shirts like Saks Fifth Avenue?

Of course, some of the hatred is coming from unions, which have tried but, so far as I know, failed to unionize Wal-Mart's work force. That one thing tells you that it must be a much better deal to work for Wal-Mart than its critics let on. Some of the disdain comes from leftist snobs who think they should run the lives of the peasants who work and shop there.

I am a small-town guy who has hated to see so many locally owned small businesses go under, but that's not Wal-Mart's fault. That trend started years ago with suburban sprawl (a major contributor to the energy crisis, by the way), suburban shopping malls, strip malls and all the other discounters that preceded Wal-Mart in prominence. It was caused by the American public's preference to buy based on price, rather than on service or quality. It was caused by local politicians converting the National Defense Highway System (the interstates) into suburban and urban commuter systems by routing them through instead of around the cities.

Wal-Mart is one of the best-run corporations in the world. The individual consumer has no clout with suppliers and manufacturers. Wal-Mart uses its enormous buying clout to get consumers the best price at the best quality possible. Being a supplier to Wal-Mart is no picnic, as the company is quite demanding.

It's not Wal-Mart's fault that much of its merchandise is manufactured in China. The late Sam Walton went to extraordinary lengths to help American manufacturers, but Wal-Mart doesn't control any corporation except itself. The move to China is not coming from Wal-Mart, but from greedy manufacturing corporations that love cheap and controlled labor. If your competitor is selling an American brand-name product made in China cheaper than you can buy one here, and if the customer says, "I don't care where it's made as long as I can afford it," what are you going to do?

More recently, Wal-Mart has been slammed for not providing what its critics think it should in the way of medical insurance. Well, why is General Motors flirting with bankruptcy? Why is Ford Motor Co. in financial trouble? Why, for that matter, is the federal government in financial trouble? The stinking hag in this room that everyone is ignoring is the high cost of medical service.

You can't provide low-cost health care or low-cost medical insurance for a system run by millionaire doctors and six-figure hospital administrators, and that has 1,200 percent profit margins for drugs and medical devices. The health-industry attitude is, we'll profiteer like crazy, and you people find a way to pay us. If Congress were not a bought-and-paid-for whore, America could join the rest of the industrialized world with a reasonable health-care system.

Health-care costs are one of the key factors in making American manufacturers uncompetitive. Now that the state of Maryland has presumed to dictate what kind of benefits Wal-Mart provides, if I ran the company, I'd close every store in the state and put the property up for sale. This is just one more ploy in the anti-Wal-Mart crusade.

We have reached a sick and perverted point in our culture when honesty and success bring attacks, mainly from people who either don't know what they are talking about or have a hidden agenda.

Millions of Americans who earn low wages from other employers rely on Wal-Mart to help them stretch their family budget. Wal-Mart has kept faith with those people. I've never found a dirty store, a rude employee or a defective product in a Wal-Mart store.

If you prefer to pay more than something's worth in exchange for some phony ambience or fancy label, go right ahead. In the meantime, get off Wal-Mart's back. It's one of the few entities in this country that is doing the right thing the right way for the right reasons.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: charleyreese; reese; retail; walmart
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To: durasell

But look at the high correlation between genius and insanity. Who cares. Since we are on the subject of Wal-Mart, I once saw a clip of Sam Walton, on lifestyles of the rich and famous, attempting to load his hunting dogs in his truck, he was the richest man in America at the time.

America is a great place.


101 posted on 05/03/2006 10:59:30 PM PDT by okiecon
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To: okiecon

Yep, ole Sam was a folksy type. Oddly, more people remember him in his pickup than in his Gulfstream.


102 posted on 05/03/2006 11:20:12 PM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: okiecon

p.s.

Yes, America is a great place.


103 posted on 05/03/2006 11:20:52 PM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: okiecon

No, unions exist to allow workers to excersize their collective power to bargain for better wages, treatment, etc.
Unions don't set non-union wages and make up a minority of
wage earners in America. So, since unions were not part of the discussion until now, I must assume you have their perspective out of whack and at least a mild bias against them coming into the argument.

As for what is reasonable or unreasonable, that is determined by the market. If GM could not afford to pay the wages, they would not be paid - union or no union. Simple as that. So, your beef isn't with unions, it is with supply and demand. And no real surprise there. The entire effort consisting of the use of foreign labor, illegal immigrant labor, And imported Visa based fraud labor has been one of trying to undermine supply and demand by undermining the local market with those sources. That seems to be why these big three attacks + free trade seem so loved by the ethically challenged in the GOP and Dim party and why America is screaming about it to deaf politicians. Ya'll don't like supply and demand and to cover for your own failings, you attack us and say we don't like Capitalism. You lie about us to hide your own shortcomings. Unfortunately for you, everyone sees through it.

So, again, your opinion on what "sounds reasonable" by way of wages, is useless. The market decides it, not you. You aren't happy with the market and supply and demand and have opted toward breaking both using unpatriotic and subversive methods. And that may lead to war.


104 posted on 05/03/2006 11:28:53 PM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: durasell

Corporations don't run themselves. And I'm sorry; but, they do owe loyalty to their home country. These mega Corporations get to be huge and forget that their size is directly proportional to the land that allowed them the opportunity to be what they are. You guys whine about how employees are "unloyal" to companies. The fact is companies today are unloyal to employees, country, stockholders, etc on down the line. The only loyalty they seem to have is to money. And that is a deep character flaw. Greed is, afterall, an addiction - a disease. And Greedy people behave after the fashion of addicts, thus the modern seperation of business and morals as understood to exist in the constitution via penumbra as it were and only through the eyewear of the Greedy..

Companies exist to make profit, And guns exist to kill people. Right back to the same hollow argument. Didn't take you long.


105 posted on 05/03/2006 11:36:00 PM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: durasell

Ford was pretty ok. It is only in the mind's eye of the current generation of addicts to money and strangers to ethics that ford is wierd or nuts. That isn't an indictment of them in other words, it's an indictment of you.


106 posted on 05/03/2006 11:37:40 PM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: freedumb2003

Keep nursing that inferiority complex and let us know when you actually say something.


107 posted on 05/03/2006 11:42:51 PM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc

Wow, fortunately I've never been indicted before...
In honor of the occaison I'll offer some absolutely free advice:

In the new global economy, few will be saved. Whatever isn't of use is tossed overboard. And those waiting for the large forces of commerce and politics to realign in their favor will be sadly disappointed at best. At worst, they're become the victims of demagogues and hucksters.


108 posted on 05/04/2006 12:03:16 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: Havoc
No, unions exist to allow workers to excersize their collective power to bargain for better wages, treatment, etc.

Sure they do. /sarc Unions don't set non-union wages and make up a minority of wage earners in America. So, since unions were not part of the discussion until now, I must assume you have their perspective out of whack and at least a mild bias against them coming into the argument.

Unions are a part of any discussion against Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart is nonunion, and this is behind many of the attacks on Wal-Mart. BTW, unions are some of the biggest Dem donors.

As for what is reasonable or unreasonable, that is determined by the market. If GM could not afford to pay the wages, they would not be paid - union or no union. Simple as that.

GM cannot afford the labor. GM is losing money like crazy and may go bankrupt. See, there are these things in the business world called "contracts." GM has a union "contract" that makes their employment with workers a non at-will situation and does not allow GM the flexibility to downsize when it needs to.

So, your beef isn't with unions, it is with supply and demand. And no real surprise there. The entire effort consisting of the use of foreign labor, illegal immigrant labor, And imported Visa based fraud labor has been one of trying to undermine supply and demand by undermining the local market with those sources. That seems to be why these big three attacks + free trade seem so loved by the ethically challenged in the GOP and Dim party and why America is screaming about it to deaf politicians. Ya'll don't like supply and demand and to cover for your own failings, you attack us and say we don't like Capitalism. You lie about us to hide your own shortcomings. Unfortunately for you, everyone sees through it.

Bullsh*t. You simply attack the source and show your own lack of comprehension of how the business world works. Using foreign labor to manufacture at a lower cost raises the standards of living throughout both countries. Free trade, in effect, makes the market larger, and therefore more efficient because the allocating of resources is better. Illegal immigration is a different issue from free trade.n Protectionism is dead. So what. BTW, America is screaming about illegal immigrations, not foreign products. Illegal immigration costs in numerous ways other than driving down the cost of labor. As far as "undermining the local market," there is no such thing. You are connecting that market to another market. Foreign labor is not loved, foreign goods might be. Illegal immigration and Visa fraud (one in the same, really) are loved by the Dems because these people, if allowed to become citizens through amnesty, will vote Dem reliably. The current GOP leadership is too stupid and is worried (without cause) about alienation of currect Hispanic citizens. Your crap about "not liking supply and demand" is a strawman. Reminds me of that song, goes something like "just your imagination . . ."

So, again, your opinion on what "sounds reasonable" by way of wages, is useless. The market decides it, not you. You aren't happy with the market and supply and demand and have opted toward breaking both using unpatriotic and subversive methods. And that may lead to war.

THE MARKET DID NOT DECIDE THAT GM SHOULD PAY PEOPLE NOT TO WORK. Do you know what the market wage for labor that produces nothing is? $0. You attempt at using patriotism and subversiveness show a lack of depth in your thinking. War? HAHA. I am perfectly happy with the market. Your accusation that I somehow "broke it" suggests that you are not happy with the market as it currently is. Protectionism only protects the inefficient.
109 posted on 05/04/2006 12:04:47 AM PDT by okiecon
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To: durasell

That is if you have it your way and last long enough to see it . Given the volatile nature of the issue, I wouldn't be placing any bets. The south thought that way about slavery.


110 posted on 05/04/2006 12:07:23 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc

Oh yeah, in regards to Ford. The guy paid to have the Protocols of the Elders of Zion reprinted in the U.S. and even included it with some cars. His newspaper, the Dearborn Indpendent, was completely off the wall...


111 posted on 05/04/2006 12:09:30 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: Havoc

Look, I wish the world was the way you want it to be, but it isn't. And, like everyone else, I have to deal with the reality. I'm just some guy trying to make myself of some value in the world.


112 posted on 05/04/2006 12:12:22 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: okiecon

Unions are not part of the discussion and haven't been. They get dragged in because businesses don't like unions by and large - and neither do elitist, ivory towere republicans. Unions have good and bad effects. That is due to the people involved, not the concept. So spare us. You have a bias and don't like supply and demand when it brings about something you don't like. Simple. GM doesn't pay people not to work. GM Contracts with people for work and they have a provision for layoffs and downtime as a protection for the worker. If you don't like that, too bad. That is what the market decided - unmolested by your tinkering.

Collective bargaining is part of the market dynamic. GM and the employees agreed on employee compensation and benefits.
That is a market dynamic. You can handwring; but, if you want to claim it isn't, then no contract agreed to by anyone is "fair" even if they both agreed to it. Doesn't quite pass the sniff test..

You don't like supply and demand and to cover for that, your side invokes the strawman that the majority doesn't like capitalism. That's why they stopped polling on the issue. When the numbers approached 70%, they refused to do anything about it and just decided to be silent rather than debate the issue publically (offshoring/freetrade) and present the image of obstinance that would have been and now has been generated. Just as with Illegal immigration, the people spoke to the servants and the servants said "up yours". People aren't buying the bs lines and you guys are increasingly agitated over that fact.. Get used to it. It's gonna get a lot hotter while the frog changes place with the politicians.



113 posted on 05/04/2006 12:20:22 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: durasell

Yep, it's a values thing. And the world is what we make of it. If you make it unfair, it will be unfair - but not because 'it's just that way.' I deal with reality too. We all do. And the reality is that a lot of people are sick of the 'shut up and take it' attitude as well as the servants telling the boss how it's gonna be. You wanna sail your ship, the way it's going, don't be surprised when the mutiny hits. The GOP is doing it's level best to be a minority party or a non-existant one. And if it keeps losing people in numbers like it is, the paybacks coming will be pretty awful.


114 posted on 05/04/2006 12:29:51 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc
Unions are not part of the discussion and haven't been. They get dragged in because businesses don't like unions by and large - and neither do elitist, ivory towere republicans. Unions have good and bad effects. That is due to the people involved, not the concept. So spare us. You have a bias and don't like supply and demand when it brings about something you don't like. Simple. GM doesn't pay people not to work. GM Contracts with people for work and they have a provision for layoffs and downtime as a protection for the worker. If you don't like that, too bad. That is what the market decided - unmolested by your tinkering.

Unions are a part of the discussion. Wal-Mart will not let in the biggest union in America. I like supply and demand. SUPPLY AND DEMAND DID NOT BRING ABOUT UNION LABOR CONTRACTS THAT REQUIRE GM TO PAY WORKERS TO DO NOTHING. "Unmolested by my tinkering" huh? LOL. Molested by union tinkering is more like it. That is why GM is losing money hand over foot. Yet you love union tinkering so much you are willing to see the demise of an America manufacturer at their hands.

Collective bargaining is part of the market dynamic. GM and the employees agreed on employee compensation and benefits. That is a market dynamic. You can handwring; but, if you want to claim it isn't, then no contract agreed to by anyone is "fair" even if they both agreed to it. Doesn't quite pass the sniff test..

To support the above claim you would actually have to believe that GM would pay people to not work, all as a result of the free market. That is simply wrong. Unions inflate wages. Just because the union and GM agreed to it does not make it a free market function. Collective bargaining has its place, where the worker cannot easily be replaced. The Union exerts influence the individual worker would not have. Our economy is near full employment, so GM would still have to pay good wages to attract and keep labor.

You don't like supply and demand and to cover for that, your side invokes the strawman that the majority doesn't like capitalism. That's why they stopped polling on the issue. When the numbers approached 70%, they refused to do anything about it and just decided to be silent rather than debate the issue publically (offshoring/freetrade) and present the image of obstinance that would have been and now has been generated. Just as with Illegal immigration, the people spoke to the servants and the servants said "up yours". People aren't buying the bs lines and you guys are increasingly agitated over that fact.. Get used to it. It's gonna get a lot hotter while the frog changes place with the politicians.

What are you rambling about? I do not own Wal-Mart or GM. You simply wish to implement protectionist policies that hurt Americans for some simple sense of security. Supply and demand is your strawman. Tariffs and other protectionist measures thwart supply and demand by artificially restricting the market.

BTW, your load of crap about the loss of the American manufacturing base is a lie.

Dr. Williams' new article on Townhall (http://townhall.com/opinion/columns/walterwilliams/2006/05/03/196039.html) (emphasis added):

According to some pundits and political hustlers, free trade has led to a loss of "good manufacturing jobs." Let's look at it, but before doing so, let's first see whether we should work ourselves into a tizzy over other job losses.

In 1900, 41 percent of the U.S. labor force was employed in agriculture. Now, only two percent of today's labor force works in agricultural jobs. If declining employment is used as a gauge of an industry's health, agriculture is America's sickest industry.

Let's not stop with agriculture. In 1970, the telecommunications industry employed 421,000 workers in good-paying jobs as switchboard operators. Today, the telecommunications industry employs only 78,000 operators. That's a tremendous 80 percent job loss. What happened to all those agriculture and switchboard operator jobs? Were they exported to China and India by rapacious businessmen?

The easy and correct answer is that our agricultural sector has seen massive gains in productivity as a result of advances in farm machinery, innovation and technology. There have also been spectacular advances in telecommunications. In 1970, those 421,000 switchboard operators annually handled 9.8 billion long-distance calls. Now 100 billion long-distance calls a year require only 78,000 switchboard operators. What's more is, the cost of making a long-distance call is a fraction of what it was in 1970.

Here's my question to you: Should Congress do something to restore all of those jobs lost in agriculture and telecommunications, and what might that something be?

The tremendous gains in productivity seen in agriculture, telecommunications and some other industries have benefited the manufacturing industry as well. According to David Huether, chief economist of the National Association of Manufacturers, U.S. manufacturers are producing and exporting more goods than ever before. While manufacturing output easily outpaces the larger U.S. economy, manufacturing employment, at 14.2 million, is at its lowest level in more than 50 years.

How do we reconcile lower manufacturing employment with rising manufacturing output? In his April 3, 2006, BusinessWeek article, "The Case of the Missing Jobs," Huether says, "Since 2001, with the aid of computers, telecommunications advances, and ever more efficient plant operations, U.S. manufacturing productivity, or the amount of goods or services a worker produces in an hour, has soared a dizzying 24 percent. That's 72 percent faster than the average productivity advance during America's four most recent recession-recovery cycles dating back to the 1970s. In short: We're making more stuff with fewer people." That means rapid economic growth doesn't translate into the kind of manufacturing job creation of earlier periods.

How about the claim that our manufacturing jobs are going to China? The fact of business is, since 2000, China has lost 4.5 million manufacturing jobs, compared with the loss of 3.1 million in the U.S.

Job loss is the trend among the top 10 manufacturing countries who produce 75 percent of the world's manufacturing output (the U.S., Japan, Germany, China, Britain, France, Italy, Korea, Canada and Mexico). Only Italy has managed not to lose factory jobs since 2000.

Economist Joseph Schumpeter referred to this process witnessed in market economies as "creative destruction," where technology and innovation destroy some jobs while creating others. While the process works hardships on some, any attempt to impede the process will make all of us worse off.

Imagine for a moment that technology hadn't destroyed most of the jobs of those 41 percent of Americans working in agriculture in 1900. Where in the world would we have gotten the manpower to make all those goods produced now that weren't even imagined in 1900? Jobs destroyed through the market forces of creative destruction make us all better off, and that applies also to job destruction that comes from peaceable, voluntary exchange with people in different cities, states and countries.

End Article

Looks like manufacturing is healthy. I bet you would have been one of those fellows lamenting the lack of good hay-hauling jobs circa 1925 too?

115 posted on 05/04/2006 1:23:32 AM PDT by okiecon
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To: Air Force Brat

Thanks for the info. I'll have to do some googling later on.


116 posted on 05/04/2006 2:32:26 AM PDT by 3catsanadog (When anything goes, everything does.)
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To: Joe Bfstplk
What do these critics want Wal-Mart to do? Fail? Start selling $300 shirts like Saks Fifth Avenue?

Of course not that, but would a "Made In America Boutique" be below them? The shoppers who say they would pay twice to get American would have an opportunity to vote with their wallets.

117 posted on 05/04/2006 2:34:23 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck
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To: On the Road to Serfdom

Perhaps your reply should be to 3catsanadog. That's who brought up the Wal-Mart/Costco questions.

And, well, I didn't choose 20 years because Costco wasn't publicly traded 20 years ago. Five years is a long time in the stock market. It was an arbitrary pick. I could have picked one year.


118 posted on 05/04/2006 5:30:07 AM PDT by Air Force Brat
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To: ThinkDifferent

Well, there are no Wal-Marts near me, so I'll cede to your first hand knowledge that Wal-Mart customers have been swamping the customer service counter demanding cheaper lawn sprinklers. I had no idea.

Your statement that "US manufacturing output keeps rising, albeit with fewer workers due to large productivity increases" is difficult for me to respond to, because there are multiple measures of manufacturing output. Please provide a reference for your statements. I like facts.

One fact I can share - in my business I've spent over two decades working with closing manufacturing plants. I've seen an incredible diversity of plants close - automotive, abrasives, primary aluminum production, pulp and paper, battery manufacturing, ship building, parts, chemical manufacturing, forest products, semiconductor...

The list goes on. Manufacturing in the U.S. is declining. There's no question of that in my mind. I've walked too many ghostly hulks where previously thousands of Americans worked and supported their families.

It's very sad.

And it's getting worse.


119 posted on 05/04/2006 5:44:40 AM PDT by Air Force Brat
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To: Havoc; durasell
Havoc post #69
"It just seems that many more nowdays resort to what they can get away with instead of doing right for right's sake. But, then, that is what we get when people abandon proper ethics for money."

Havoc post #90
"I find it simply amazing that it doesn't bother you all when Companies are unpatriotic. Again, all that matters to your crowd is the profit - oh, and maybe once in a while saying whatever you must for sake of public opinion."

Havoc post #114
"Yep, it's a values thing. ... don't be surprised when the mutiny hits."

So, if I understand your position; Walmart is "bad" because of "moral failings" and "unpatriotic" behavior. Examples of this being (1) their not offering employees more generous pay and/or medical insurance coverage and (2) their marketing of products produced in China (where workers are coerced to work for wages that are "immorally" low).

Is this an accurate description of your position? I've offered "your position" with "specific examples" on your behalf as you ignored my request that you do it for yourself. If it's erroneous, please correct.

I'm not aware of anything that Walmart does that I would consider immoral or unpatriotic. And I'm not saying that for any reason other than that I believe it.

If you do believe that Walmart is under-compensating its employees, but concede that they do pay above the minimum wage as defined by state and federal statutes; please help me understand how you reach such a conclusion.

I've worked at (and below) the legal minimum wage, but have never felt cheated as long as I was paid that which was agreed upon in advance. I have been undercompensated by employers; where I was in fact paid less than was promised. I considered that practice to be immoral, and would consider it immoral for Walmart to do the same. I'm not aware of any such behavior on their part.

In regard to their "unpatriotic" behavior of selling products that are produced in China; I'm not aware of a company that's a major retail distributor that doesn't sell Chinese made products. Are all such companies that sell Chinese made products unpatriotic? Can you list a few companies for me that don't sell Chinese made products? Can you explain what it is about Walmart's marketing of Chinese products that is unpatriotic?

By the way, I do agree that the Chinese government does behave in an immoral manner in some of their practices that do result in the underpayment and nonpayment of workers. There have recently been numerous cases of suicide among construction workers that were shamed and humiliated by such practices. This behavior by the Chinese government is immoral, and I believe it's unpatriotic, on their part.

And again; I am interested in your opinion of the existence of "immoral and unpatriotic" behavior by Walmart; but unless you can give a specific example of such behavior, there's not much else I can say about it.

120 posted on 05/04/2006 11:48:31 AM PDT by Nova
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To: Nova; Havoc

Nova:

Read the posts more carefully. It's not about logic. It can't be argued that way. It's about "the way things should be."


121 posted on 05/04/2006 12:04:02 PM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: Air Force Brat
Perhaps your reply should be to 3catsanadog. That's who brought up the Wal-Mart/Costco questions.

Yes, you did not bring up the Wal-Mart/Costco first, I noticed that after I posted.

And, well, I didn't choose 20 years because Costco wasn't publicly traded 20 years ago. Five years is a long time in the stock market. It was an arbitrary pick. I could have picked one year.

According to the chart I linked to Costco started trading around 1985. Since then Wal-Mart has been a much better 21 year investment. Also, based on the chart, if you look at the last 6 years or the last 7 years you can see both companies performed about the same.

I am not saying you mislead on purpose, certainly 5 years is a reasonable and standard time period to pick. But as a result of that pick your numbers are misleading. Approximately 5 or 5.5 years ago Costco had a huge dip in price. If you bought right after that dip than you would have good performance relative to Walmart which did not dip in price at that time. If you bought at any other time it does not look like Costco stock did any better than WalMart.

122 posted on 05/04/2006 12:25:18 PM PDT by On the Road to Serfdom
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To: durasell
"It's not about logic."

I'm thinking if I can reduce his arguments to their base elements, Havoc might be able to realize just exactly that.

123 posted on 05/04/2006 12:34:08 PM PDT by Nova
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To: Nova

I've noticed in my travels two distinct groups of people:

Folks A) Are making tons of money with highly specialized skill sets. They are actually making more money than they ever thought possible and are reveling in new technology and increasingly easy travel and the ability to access foreign markets and customers. A good portion of these folks have no solid job. They work as independent contractors.

Folks B)Have been "caught in the switches." Their skill sets are either undeveloped or outdated. The price/value of their skill set has fallen to near zero on the open market. They either want things to go back to the old corporate model or some other real or imagined way that things "used to be."

Needless to say, there are more Folks B than Folks A. And this is a real problem.


124 posted on 05/04/2006 12:41:34 PM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: Nova

p.s.

One last thing -- it is extremely easy to confuse the value of someone's skill set with the value of them as a person. Obviously, the two are not related -- but it's sometimes difficult to untangle the two.


125 posted on 05/04/2006 12:45:11 PM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: Nova

The selling of Chinese made products is not in itself immoral or unpatriotic. That discussion has been had over and over again; but, it is yet another in the standard list of strawmen presented. Substitute "Foreign" or "British" for "Chinese" and that becomes apparent on it's face given the facts surrounding the revolution that founded this nation. It betrays your argument for the strawman.

What is unpatriotic is selling a foreign product at below local market cost to produce it. That is called unfair competition. You are using foreign wage scales to undermine the US economy. And if you don't understand the damage that does, you need to seek help. If you don't care, you merely illustrate my other points as to morality. Our economy is the backbone of this country's ability to defend itself. If you undermine the economy, you undermine the nation. And by undermining the US wage, you undermine the economy. Pretty simple. But not conducive to allowing you to profit absurdly at the cost of America and Americans. When all you can see is money, Patriotism and what it means becomes 'unimportant' and 'fuzzy.'

Something just kinda crept into the back of my mind. I and others have noted the Glaring prediction of the author of the Free-trade theory that it would lead most likely to revolution. And it's been asked of my side whether we would start a civil war over it. An interesting question. But, as the warning existed before the theory was shoved on us all, it seems more proper to ask if you would.. Start a civil war over it. I ask because it's quite possible that will happen IMHO. Would you? Simple yes or no if you please.


126 posted on 05/04/2006 11:52:39 PM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: durasell

You mean "The Way Things Outta Be"..

It's about the way things are. Subverting the economy is actionable. The question is who is willing to take the action to stop it. Illegal immigration is actionable. Again, same question. Patriotism, Morality and business often find themselves at odds. That is why laws have been passed endlessly to constrain business from operating in immoral ways. Not illegal, immoral. They become illegal because they're judged immoral. Which is precisely why the harping by the democrats about not "adjudicating morality" is an oxymoron. Slavery didn't become illegal because it wasn't nice. It was judged immoral and unconstitutional. What the constitution says about it is a moral statement.

Law isn't written because people don't know what is immoral. Law is written because people refuse to be constrained by morality. The system, because they won't constrain themselves, acts to constrain them. Thus, slavery was outlawed. And a war was fought over it because of the desires of some businessmen getting rich off of it. Same thing precisely is happening now. All of America is being put in jeopardy - over the financial aspirations of few hundred companies as compared to, what .. a third of a billion people.. I'll let you consider the risk in light of the disparity and assininity of it. Same situation as those leading to the civil war.


127 posted on 05/05/2006 12:03:38 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc

Right. I agree with one correction. Business rarely acts in an immoral fashion. Mostly it acts in an amoral fashion. Again, corporations are machines.


128 posted on 05/05/2006 12:35:14 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: durasell

IMHO, you've oversimplified the matter. It is more complicated than that.

Education in this country is the avenue to better skill sets.
Not everyone can afford the education. And mid-level jobs that 'anyone' can do, have been the place those people have traditionally aspired to reaching in order to be able to afford the education needed for the better skill sets. I got hired on at EDS because I was extensively self trained in multiple OS platforms, software packages etc, had a background in sales and technical freelance work. I got their not because I had a degree but because of the bulk of my experience. Once I did get there, I found that I could eventually afford schooling. As it happens, I arrived there after losing everything and much of my resources went into rebuilding my life. By the time I was offshored, I was ready to consider schooling; but, by then the option was out of the question and being 'service sector' none of us qualified for retraining - ie educational assistance - that manufacturing sector workers got.

The reality is, not everyone is single with no responsibilities or overhead. In fact few are. It's tough on my health to try to work multiple jobs. I did it for a while and nearly landed myself in the hospital which would have bankrupted me at this point. But I'll return to it soon anyway. I'll have to. So this isn't whining, it's just using the most readily available real world example that I know intimately - my own. My story isn't that different from that of others. The specifics may be different; but, the circumstances end up with the same result. Too poor to afford anything and too rich for assistance. I don't want the assistance. I'd rather croak than take money from other taxpayers who are struggling themselves. On the other hand, while the mid-level job at 10-15 bucks an hour would help me afford schooling, those are the very jobs you're side is intent on raping from the landscape and pushing overseas for greater profit. What do you call the 'land of opportunity' after you've exported most of the opportunity?.. 'the land where opportunity used to be'...

That is the dynamic. You're destroying the opportunity here while raping the landscape around us. You've literally become parasites living off the carcass and gleeful over the feast.

The kneejerk reaction most of you utter is something along the lines of "start your own business" or "go back to school". That's great if you can afford it. Most can't. Have you looked at the price of a college education recently? I have. The cost of going into business isn't much better. But let's not get distracted by the real world.

I've spent my whole life pulling myself up by the bootstraps because that has been pretty much my only option given my circumstances and my morals. And hearing people say off the cuff, "pull yourself up..." isn't an insult because they are morons in my scheme of things. If they knew what they were saying and had any integrity, they'd find something useful to say. Instead, they offer the obvious. Who needs it. I'd rather they be constrained from turning the land of opportunity into that land of what used to be.. that or given a dose of reality and their own medicine for a bit enough for them to see the error in it. As it stands, if they want to turn reality into Shadowrun, Cyberpunk or the like, I'm content to respond in kind if it comes to that. They know the risk of what they're doing. If it bites them, they'll have no one to complain to about it. Right now, the illegal immigration issue is setting the nation into a rage.
When that is dealt with and the problems still exist, the desire for blood isn't going to be any less and the patience level by that time will have been exhausted. The American Civil war II is a very real possibility of a sequal.


129 posted on 05/05/2006 12:49:03 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc

Bump!


130 posted on 05/05/2006 1:02:06 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: durasell

Corporations are not machines, businesses are not machines nor are Mafia families. Every mafia family is a business. Business and Corporation are merely concepts you're ducking behind in order to avoid admitting that people are behind them making decisions. Those people are making moral choices whether the concept does or not. I've spent a lot of years debating religion and you're doing nothing more than playing a shell game whether you intend to or not. You can't simply disassociate people from responsibility by invoking a concept and hiding them behind it. Sorry.


131 posted on 05/05/2006 1:02:50 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Common Tator
"The result of that was the great world wide depression."

Right on cue, the big lie. How very boring.

132 posted on 05/05/2006 1:06:43 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: Air Force Brat

Bump!


133 posted on 05/05/2006 1:08:32 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: Joe Bfstplk
"It's not Wal-Mart's fault that much of its merchandise is manufactured in China.....The move to China is not coming from Wal-Mart, but from greedy manufacturing corporations that love cheap and controlled labor."

It's more like having to close the doors on American plants, Charlie.

We saw that outfit in the midwest that made the cabinets for big TV sets, you know, with the large glass front? Well, with cheap chineeeeeze labor and less than desireable quality, they can produce the entire cabinet for less than the midwest company's material cost for just the glass screen alone.

'Course, you get screens of non-uniform thickness and clarity, but what's a little distortion compared to cheap price?

134 posted on 05/05/2006 1:17:58 AM PDT by nightdriver
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To: durasell
"Not to put too fine a point on it, but wal-mart has no obligation to anyone but its shareholders."

This sentiment will lead to the death of the nation. Here in one sentice is the globalist merchantile mind. nothing matters but money. Good, evil, right, wrong, life, death all are subservant to making a profit. Which is exactly what wal-mart does with it's "China price". Wal-mart does not give a damn about the usa, American citizens or what is best for the country. Can't meet the "China price" can't do business with wal-mart.

135 posted on 05/05/2006 1:20:51 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: Caipirabob
If Congress were not a bought-and-paid-for whore...

Soon to be in someone's tagline....

136 posted on 05/05/2006 1:22:55 AM PDT by Las Vegas Dave ("Liberals out of power are comical-Liberals in power are dangerous!"-Rush Limbaugh.)
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To: Havoc

"Walmart isn't hated because it is successful."

Exactly. Success has nothing to do with it. It's the means utilized to achieve that success so many take issue with.


137 posted on 05/05/2006 1:30:08 AM PDT by moehoward
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To: The South Texan
"The Protectionist/Buchann wing of FR is fun to spar with on this issue."

LOL, it is amazing that they do not see the wisdom of putting usa manutfacturing out of business so the the communist government of China has a market in which it can fiance it's military for the coming confrontation with the usa. What is wrong with them?

138 posted on 05/05/2006 1:33:22 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: ThinkDifferent
"This would almost be a valid argument if Walmart were the only company to sell Chinese imports."

they started it all, they were the first to go to china and as the article points out if your competitor can under cut you then you are in trouble. Once Wal-mart got the "china price" all other discount retailers had to get the "china price" too. the blame lies more with the federal government insane idea that "constructive engagement" with China will serve our long tern interests and it's equally insane belief that free trade is possible with communist nations.

139 posted on 05/05/2006 1:39:30 AM PDT by jpsb
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To: CodeToad
Wal-Mart seeks out Chinese goods. Period.

To misquote a line "Wal-Mart is the best of capitalism, and the worst of capitalism."

The real villain here is the U.S. Government in this case Bill Clinton's administration. Opening trade with China through the WTO seemed like a great chance to sell goods to the Chinese. The reverse is true as the current 250 billion dollar trade deficit shows.That administration also failed to control the inflation rate that drove all the U.S. economy higher.

Wal Mart has forced most of the companies that do business with them to build overseas plants to compete in their marketplace. By doing so, Wal Mart destroys high paying jobs while replacing the work force with their low pay positions.

You also need to learn the first (leader) price policy that Wal Mart practices. The advertised price for a particular toaster oven may be lower that other stores but the remainder of the toaster ovens are the same costs or more than others.

Wal Mart turns a higher profit because of the off shore products and its ability to buy mass quantities and control the manufacturing.

140 posted on 05/05/2006 1:42:10 AM PDT by im4eagles (and the eagles shall soar above)
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To: ThinkDifferent

The problem with your construction of this is that the customers oftentimes don't know how the prices got lowered when it comes to Walmart.

The other thing you fail to mention is money and choice. When you destroy local competition that was paying higher wages, you remove money from the local economy - deminishing the overall cash flow in that economy. You also lower the wage because Walmart replaces the higher wage local jobs with lower wage Walmart jobs.. the very thing they used in helping destroy the local competition. The lower wage rate and lowered available cash flow in the community then makes the lower price the only one which the average person can afford on the new lower wage. The reality is that in the current slash and burn climate that has prevailed, the operational approach has been to cut, cut, cut. Benefits, pay, hours, etc in the name of stock price. Business seems to have awakened to the fact that you can only cut so far before you have to look for other ways of making higher and higher profits and stock dividends. They turned their back on loyalty and cut the American worker to 0 in order to make a buck. And as another has so eloquently put it here, Walmart is forcing that to happen.

Walmart is actively forcing companies to move or close down. They destroyed Rubbermaid with their tactics - a Giant in american industry and a Fortune 500 company. And Walmart destroyed them. Interesting that after they did, Chinese businessmen came here and bought the remains to take back to China. IMHO, Walmart used to be a success story that was worth telling. Today, they are an enemy of America because in the corporate world, they have no moral grounding and no loyalty to anything but a dollar. The dollar has become their state and state religion.


141 posted on 05/05/2006 1:48:12 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: jpsb
Bingo, same thing as with Immigration.. The politicians don't care about what illegals are doing to America. They don't care about the damage. All they see is the profits reaped from using illegals - to hell with the law, they're making money. To hell with morality, they're making money. To hell with America, they're making money. Funny thing is, if you changed the name and date on this and reviewed it as past history, you'd have to conclude based on what is happening that someone was trying to destroy this country. In one shot you're destroying the prevailing wage, reducing opportunity for the citizens, flooding the nation with illegals, importing foreign workers to replace Americans, Moving American jobs overseas.. At the same time they've subjected the US to the WTO Court making the US Supreme court subservient to it's will without a constitutional ammendment which makes it illegal on it's face. The WTO is allowed to subjugate the nation to laws it writes which is also unconstitutional. Added to the other factors, you've essentially setup an outside governing body with no answerability to the American people that can write law for us without our consent or approval and force it upon us without appeal. Doesn't sound much different than King Edward's approach to dealing with the Scotts. Slash and burn. Or as it was stated in Braveheart, "If we can't get them out, we'll breed them out.." At this point in the game, our forefathers had already told the King of England what to go do with himself..
142 posted on 05/05/2006 2:06:57 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Havoc

Yes, people make decisions in corporations -- but they are not "free actors." The quality of their decisions, actions and general performance is based on how effective it is in meeting the goals of the corporation. They may be "good people," "bad people," or highly complex and conflicted people -- but they are judged solely on their utility to meeting corporate goals within their specialty.


143 posted on 05/05/2006 2:44:06 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: jpsb

This sentiment will lead to the death of the nation. Here in one sentice is the globalist merchantile mind. nothing matters but money. Good, evil, right, wrong, life, death all are subservant to making a profit.


Good, evil, right and wrong are the domain of the laws of a nation. If doing business with China is morally wrong, then a tax on imported merchandise is in order. No doubt wal-mart and others would pay the tax. But to expect a company to willingly surrender a competitive advantage is not reasonable.


144 posted on 05/05/2006 2:49:17 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: durasell

Nope it just puts on full display the deriliction of duty on behalf of the Congress and Commander in Chief for not handling trade in such a fashion as to prevent the subversion of our economy. Walmart just becomes an immoral willing hand in doing it. And that tells us who Walmart is and why Walmart is dispised.. If business won't constrain themselves, the public will act to do so. Can you say "Backlash".


145 posted on 05/05/2006 3:10:00 AM PDT by Havoc (Evolutionists and Democrats: "We aren't getting our message out" (coincidence?))
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To: Joe Bfstplk
What do these critics want Wal-Mart to do? Fail? Start selling $300 shirts like Saks Fifth Avenue?

I would like to see them carry items “Made in the USA”. Maybe just one little section? Just a token gesture?
146 posted on 05/05/2006 3:12:18 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink)
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To: rdb3

No - in my opinion, capitalism isn’t good – but it is the only system tried so far that works.


147 posted on 05/05/2006 3:15:32 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink)
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To: Havoc
This story is just another attempt to whitewash the issue by painting a strawman.

Your reply does exactly the same thing. Why is your "strawman" any better than his?

148 posted on 05/05/2006 3:37:14 AM PDT by been_lurking
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To: Havoc

Look, I have no dog in the wal-mart fight. My local pols voted against allowing the store in. The company kind of shrugged, said, "fine" and went on about their business. No big deal. Nothing personal.

I have to assume that the instant enough people have enough of cheap Chinese stuff, then a law will be passed in congress. Until then...



149 posted on 05/05/2006 3:48:16 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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To: R. Scott

The companies that make the $300 shirts or $800 pants can't sell to walmart. First off, they don't manufacture enough $300 shirts to meet wal-mart's needs. Secondly, it would be slitting their own throats since the kind of person who buys that stuff doesn't relish the thought of seeing it on the shelves of wal-mart...


150 posted on 05/05/2006 3:50:39 AM PDT by durasell (!)
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