Archive for May, 2006

Summary of Walmart annual meeting

Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

At the top end of the wage scale is Chief Executive Lee Scott, whose estimated $17.54 million compensation package last year included his salary, health and pension benefits, bonuses, profit sharing and stock options, as well as other perks, according to the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility. At the lowest rung is the average pay […]

Why an Upscale Wal-Mart Is Doomed to Fail

Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

These are excerpts from a new Texas Monthly article on the “Yuppie Wal-Mart” in Plano, Texas. It’s subscription only, I’m getting it re-printed at “Jennifer’s Journal.” [Thanks Jennifer, whoever you are.]”: There are, reportedly, five hundred organic items in this store, from produce to baby products. Wal-Mart spokeswoman Gail Lavielle later explained that “these products […]

Corporate Conscience Survey Says Workers Should Come First

Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

Bad behavior towards employees seems to affect how willing customers are to deal with such firms: Asked to define “corporate social responsibility” in their own words, 27 percent of the 800 adults interviewed for the survey identified it as a demonstrated commitment to the well-being of employees. Full Article


Tuesday, May 30th, 2006

Illinois led the way when it required all pharmacies in the state to fill prescriptions for Plan B, the morning-after Pill. Now Chicago is preparing to take another leap at Big Box retailers by requiring a living wage for all employees. According to the New York Times: Thirty-three of 50 City Council members have signed […]

Why Does Wal-Mart Think We’re Stupid?

Monday, May 29th, 2006

The El Paso Times reports that Wal-Mart tops the list of employers whose employees have kids in the state health care program: Wal-Mart had the single largest number of employees in Texas who turned to the government-subsidized program so their children could receive medical care. The retailer is also one of El Paso’s top 10 […]


Monday, May 29th, 2006

I became a fan of guerilla theatre after I read Abbie Hoffman’s Steal This Book (I’m ashamed to say I paid for my copy). These are funny, but the real trick is to think of ways to annoy and discomfort management, not the overworked and underpaid associates. From My Guy Is A Future Marine: 1. […]

California town the latest to snub Wal-Mart

Sunday, May 28th, 2006

Full Article The city council of the mixed-race bedroom community of 23,000 east of San Francisco voted this week to invoke eminent domain to block Wal-Mart Stores Inc. from building a 99,000 square foot (9,200 sq meter) store near the town’s waterfront. Wal-Mart opponents in Hercules say its presence would blight their town, the first […]

While I’m on the subject of “opportunity and savings”…

Saturday, May 27th, 2006

How many will the people of Homer, Louisiana have thanks to Wal-Mart now? From the Shreveport Times: Town and parish officials are already sending up red flags for what appears to be a devastating blow to the local economy: the announced closure of Homer’s Wal-Mart store July 1. The news, though the topic of town […]

Wal-Mart Declares War on Working Families

Saturday, May 27th, 2006

If this were a just world, nobody would take Working Families for Wal-Mart seriously. If you don’t know, Working Families for Wal-Mart is the name of an organization created with Wal-Mart money to lobby movers and shakers about the “benefits” of Wal-Mart. The New York Times reported a couple of weeks ago that not only […]

Why the World Hates Wal-Mart

Thursday, May 25th, 2006

Bloomberg has an excellent article explaining why Wal-Mart has sold off its stores in South Korea: Kim Jung Hyun stopped shopping at the Wal-Mart Stores Inc. oulet near her Seoul home last year when Shinsegae Co. opened a discount competitor 4 miles away. She prefers to drive there twice a week, she said. “I just […]

“Organic” Food Is Dead. Buy Local.

Wednesday, May 24th, 2006

I want to share with you two quotations from a review essay in the New Yorker on the subject of organic food. The first is: “We don’t think you should have to have a lot of money to feed your family organic foods.” The second is: “This is just lunch for most people. Just lunch. […]

Wal-Mart Announces Sale of South Korean Business

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2006

Press Release Mike Duke, Vice-Chairman of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., announced today that Shinsegae Co. has agreed to purchase the company’s South Korean retail business for Won 825 billion (US$882 million). Shinsegae is South Korea’s leading retailer with 79 E-Mart hypermarkets in the country. It will continue to operate Wal-Mart Korea’s 16 stores but rename them […]


Tuesday, May 23rd, 2006

Wealthy people hire lawyers, and that may be the lesson for Wal Mart in the case of the affluent Hercules. Back on 6 May I wrote how the town’s city council wants use its power of eminent domain to stop the construction of a Wal Mart. I thought it was a bad idea then and […]

Target Copies Wal-Mart’s Crummy Health Benefits

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2006

George McGovern is my personal hero. Besides being a former Senator, presidential candidate and anti-war icon, he is also a really good historian. That’s why I’m saddened to report that he has a Los Angeles Times op-ed in which he gets the Wal-Mart health care issue all wrong: The current frenzy over Wal-Mart is instructive. […]


Monday, May 22nd, 2006

(George Nemeth, Bill Callahan and I receive the Allison Bonagura Award.) During its annual Spring Celebration Luncheon today, Cleveland Jobs With Justice honored Bill Callahan, George Nemeth and me as its 2006 recipients of its Allison Bonagura Award. The award for rank-and-file activism is named after a Cleveland union activist. In addition, we each were […]