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The Tally Ho

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Is Walmart good for America?

I watched the Frontline special last night on Walmart on PBS. It was a farily good show that explained the Walmart philosphy and then traced how that philosphy leads to more lay offs and plant closing in the US to more companies moving shop to China. Bottom line = Walmart is bad for America. Not only bad for American workers but bad for the small towns that Walmart overruns and bad for American consumers. You're not really saving money at Walmart. Their strategy is based on point sales. You see one item that has a great low price that lures you into that specific department. Then in that department, the remainig items are usually higher priced than at other stores. The point sales are the only items you're getting a bargain on. Now how many people know that? I surely didn't before I saw this show. I was dissapointed that they didn't focus on labor relations within Walmart itself. It was never mentioned that Walmart doesn't allow unions or pays women less than men. That's what I would've expected of such a show.

Big cities, that I know of, like Chicago and Portland are trying hard to keep Walmart out of the city. Portland has one Walmart store and from what I've heard, the store is pure crap. The city of Portland is keeping Walmart out based on square footage requirements for commercial buildings. Walmart stores are simply too large to build in the Portland city limits. The nearest Walmart Supercenter is a good 30 mile drive out of town. I'm getting used to not having Walmart around. Target is now my destination of choice, although how much better is that? It's still a mega store. Where else is there to go?

For more info on the program, click here

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