Carol Platt Liebau: Calling All Liberal Wal-Mart Haters

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Calling All Liberal Wal-Mart Haters

Here, Jon Stossel explains it in terms even the most economically illiterate can understand. Yes, Virginia, Wal-Mart is good for America.


Blogger Brent said...

First, love your blog, love everything I've read of yours.
Also, love John Stossel - got to see him in person.

Second, my conservative credentials are unimpeachable, I can provide references, so let's take it for granted that I am conservative.
The same goes for my capitalist credentials.

Third, I work with manufacturers that sell to WalMart, and my best friend's brother is a regional manager for WalMart in the midwest, a wonderful man, doing very well for himself an his family. My youngest brother worked for WalMart for 2 years, and had a great experience.

So ---
I am a conservative Wal-Mart hater.

The reasoning is simple. I don't want to pay, through increased state expenditures, for their employees' health-care because Wal-Mart won't pay as much as most other retail companies pay for their employees' health care (yes, I know that other retail companies are following suit to WalMart- I am on top of the issue). Though they may have the right, it is lousy business. To fund health care more fully would add an average of less than 1% to the retail cost of their items.(The math = 10 cents on 10 dollars).

It is amazing to me how many of my conservative friends are outraged that we have illegal immigrants in the state taking advantage of medical care funded by the state, but feel that it's okay for Wal-Mart to save them a penny by "underinsuring", or causing such a high portion of employee payment towards "company" health insurance, forcing many of them to do the same as our illegal "guests".

I am well aware that WalMart and any other company is not required to do health care - it's a big issue. But when the Walton family takes spots 6 - 10 on Forbes list of richest Americans, c'mon. (Yes, I know . . .).

WalMart has done well and good in so many ways, among them providing jobs and a basic place (hopefully) to start working while amassing some skill(s) but that is not a defense of this thoughtless policy. Actually, much thought has gone into it - re: the WalMart internal memo that the NYT got hold of last month)policy.

The sad point is that they are not THAT much cheaper, if at all. I shop frugally - my family has to - and there are no - I repeat, NO - necessities on which WalMart is cheaper overall. I have priced for myself and over a dozen other families over a two month period. In every case, I can save money over WalMart by making the purchases at Target or KMart, a grocery, and a local drug store. While that might add up to three places of destination rather than one, it allows my and my friend's families to exercise our capitalist prerogative - and keep our consciences in good standing.

No tax money for NEA

No tax money for NPR, PBS

No tax money for illegal immigrants college / hospital births / et al.

No tax money for WalMart employee health care.

7:46 PM  
Blogger Bachbone said...

Brent, it seems to me your focus is misplaced. If you want to put a stop to illegal immigration, and to levy major fines or jail Wal-Mart execs for hiring illegals, I'm for it. That would solve the problem, I think. At least one other nation has been through this. (See National Review some months ago.) When the supply of illegals dried up, employers were forced to hire citizens at higher wages and benefits. Yes, costs of goods and services rose, too, but as you say, Americans can't expect to have their cake and eat it, too.

A GM worker used to live beside me. He worked as many hours per week as he wanted, but also voted against limiting his own hours so GM could bring back laid off 'brothers and sisters,' and he shopped at Wal-Mart. "Solidarity" goes only so far even with union members.

8:36 AM  

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