Talkin' Bout Wal-mart

What's that you say?

Now there's a decision to be made here. People need to either say out loud that they're willing to pay more in Wal-Mart so the workers there can make more (and be willing to put their money where their mouth is) or they need to shut up. Until or unless they are willing to do so, something they have proven unwilling to do in the case of Mom and Pop, they don't have anything to say about this.

This is between Wal-Mart and its employees, and none of anyone else's business.

So it's not the business of us taxpayers paying billions each year to subsidize Wal-Mart's "Always Low Wages, Always"? Why? And does McQ still not understand that the way Wal-Mart functions effectively chokes off, then kills the competition? For most, it's not a choice of where to spend your dollars. You have to go to the retailer still operating in your town. And, after Lee Scott's store comes in, the others have a strange propensity to stop operating.

One thing I never understand about these Wal-mart arguments is that they act as if we still live in an unregulated world. As if the simple decision of a consumer to buy something at a low price sanctions all abuses and crimes committed along the production line. And yet we as a society have made a number of decision detailing what is and is not acceptable behavior for our employers. Our goods would be cheaper if we allowed slave labor, but we don't. They'd also be cheaper if we allowed child labor, still no go. They'd be cheaper if we didn't have environmental regulations and stopped demanding that garment factories have proper regulation, but again, we hold firm.

The current conversation is just another version of that evolving argument. Wal-Mart pays their workers unlivable wages, imports most of their goods from overseas sweatshops, and uses the savings to drive smaller companies out of business, thus ensuring local monopolies for itself. Right now, society is beginning to decide whether or not that's acceptable. McQ's contention that such a conversation is beyond our purview is simply absurd.

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