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Why I won't spend money at Wal-Mart
I've been accused of having too many crazy rules about where
I'll spend money. I don't like to give money to corporations I can't
respect, who's business practices I don't support, who are evil. This
is hard to do, since most corporations have some evil in them, but I
continue tilting at windmills (Buyblue.org
has made this easier by doing much of the leg work on these issues)
However, I have for many years refused to shop at Wal-Mart and I will
continue to do so. It's not their anti-competitive
practices (although that's one issue). It's not their anti-woman
practices (although that's certainly a factor). It's not the way
they treat their employees, paying
sub-human wages, charging
enormous premiums for health care, even locking employees who
don't want to work overtime in the store. It's not their union
busting. It's not that they demand
public subsidies (corporate welfare) even though they have huge
profits. It's not that they are already abusing
having property from local business and families seized so they can
build more Wal-Marts. It's not that they lie about "buying American"
when they are the largest importer in the United
States. It's not that they force artists to "sanitize"
their music or Wal-Mart won't allow their albums to be sold in
It's that their costs don't offset
very, very short-sighted to shop at Wal-Mart because they are "cheap."
Tax payers pay a fortune subsidizing Wal-Mart. We pay for the medical
bills of most of their employees (in Georgia, Wal-Mart employees are
six times more likely to rely on state-provided health care for their
children than are employees of any other large company._ In all states,
a large portion of Wal-Mart's employees live below the poverty line and
rely on state programs to survive. Is saving a few cents on their
products worth the tax hike? I've always been willing to spend a little
more and keep my self-respect, but you don't even have to spend more to
avoid supporting pure evil!
I initially got a Costco membership because of how strongly I respected
the way they treat
their employees. They've proved you
don't have to rape your employees to be profitable! They have great
prices AND they treat their people WELL!
They might not have every single item a place like Wal-Mart has, but I
can get everything I need between them and Trader Joe's, and I know my
money isn't going to support Satan's minions. Shopping there is a joy,
they have a great selection, clean, bright stores, and happy employees.
More Wal-Mart Facts*:
-This company holds the record for the most suits filed against it by
the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
National Labor Relations Board has issued over 40 formal complaints
against the corporation in 25 different states in just the past five
years. The NLRB's top lawyer believed that their labor violations, such
as Illegal spying on employees, fraudulent record keeping, falsifying
time cards to avoid paying overtime, threats, illegal firings for union
organizing etc., were so widespread that he was looking into filing a
very rare national complaint against the company. (The company
contributed $2,159,330.00 to GW Bush and the GOP in 2000 and 2002. The
NLRB attorney was replaced when President Bush took office.)
1 MILLION women are involved in the largest class-action suit every
filed against a corporation. Although women make up over 65% of this
corporations work force only 10% of them are managers. The women who
have become store managers make $16,400 a year LESS then the men.
corporation took out nearly 350,000 life insurance policies on their
employees. They did not tell the employees and then named the
corporation as the beneficiary. They are now being sued by numerous
employees, and although the corporation has stopped this practice of
purchasing what is known as "Dead Peasant Policy's", a company
spokesperson stated, "The company feels it acted properly and legally
in doing this." (this means wal-mart doesn't have to provide safe
working conditions for their workers - if they are killed, wal-mart
STILL makes money off them)
-They force employees to work
after ordering them to punch out. In Texas alone this practice of "wage
theft" is estimated to have cost employees $30 million per year.
Hightower's book, Thieves in High places