We’ve made the case before, but it is one that, in our present great recession with jobs not yet turned around, that we continue to remind people that Walmart does not create jobs, it simply shuffles employment in its race for the bottom.
Or, as Greg Roach so colorfully puts it, rejiggers the local economy.
Wal Mart is no longer a destination store. People are not going to travel to North Adams to spend their money at a new Wal Mart when they have their own in Bennington, Pittsfield, Albany, Hadley, etc….
No, a new Wal Mart Super Center would simply rejigger the existing local economy. This is not necessarily a bad thing (lower food prices, etc…) However, people in North County are not magically going to be spending more on groceries or underwear just because a new store opened. For every job at the new store, one will be lost at Big Y or Price Chopper.
This is simple supply and demand stuff. Grocery and Retail rarely create actual new jobs without creating a new product or niche. Super Wal Mart does neither.
Jobs in North County will only come with actual growth in incomes and/or population, new/relocating firms or entrepreneurship. To think otherwise will only lead to disappointment.