WalMart — Alway Low Wages, Always

(Thinkprogress video via Paul Constant)
I’m guessing that anyone in the Balloon Juice readership who’s shopping at Wal-Mart isn’t doing so by choice, and that most of you are probably pretty well aware of the history behind the Black Friday Strikes. But if those good Thanksgiving vibes have put you in a generous frame of mind, the group Making Change At Walmart has a donation site to support the brave souls who are putting their livehoods on the line.

Natasha Lennard at Salon has a link-intensive summary:

…“Black Friday,” wrote Eidelson, “workers have pledged — barring concessions from the company — will bring their biggest disruptions yet.” Walmart employees across the country have a host of grievances including unsafe and unsanitary working conditions, sexual harassment, excessive hours, forced labor and low pay. Ned Resnikoff at MSNBC flagged a leaked internal document (first obtained by HuffPo) that revealed that base pay at Walmart’s Sam’s Place stores can be as low as $8 an hour (or $16,000 per year), with wage increases in increments as low as 20 or 40 cents per hour. To put this in context, Gawker recently highlighted a Demos study that says that raising the salary of all full-time workers at large retailers to $25,000 per year would lift more than 700,000 people out of poverty, at a cost of only a 1 percent price increase for customers…

Gawker also linked to a list of planned Wal-Mart Black Friday actions.

Final fillip, from ThinkProgress:

Walmart CEO Michael Duke has a total compensation of $18.1 million, and is the second highest paid executive in the Fortune 500. According to CNN Money, it would take more than 700 employees’ salaries to match his total compensation package.

Making Change at Walmart, the group leading Black Friday’s protest, is asking for a minimum wage of $13 an hour, more full time positions and affordable health care. Currently, the typical employee is paid $22,100 a year, slightly below the federal poverty line for a family of four (which is at $23,050 in 2012). Walmart earned $15 billion last year.

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61 replies
  1. 1
    Comrade Jake says:

    Avoid the place like the plague.

  2. 2
    jackmac says:

    Just drove home from Thanksgiving dinner at the in-laws and went past a local Wal-Mart at around 8 p.m. Parking lots were completely full with shoppers inside snapping up so-called bargains. Just wait, you can skip Thanksgiving dinner next year since doorbuster sales will start at noon.

  3. 3
    redshirt says:

    I vowed to stop going to Wal-Mart – ever – when I learned that the Walton heirs represent over 50% of net value in America. The poorest 49% of Americans – hundreds of millions of people – equal the 6 Walton heirs. Incredible.

    Also, I learned today here on BJ to my amazement that manufacturers make different (cheaper) version of their products for sale in Wal-Mart. That’s freakin’ clout. I mean, you’ve got to have entirely different supply chains/production lines just for Wal-Mart.

  4. 4
    General Stuck says:

    I’m guessing that anyone in the Balloon Juice readership who’s shopping at Wal-Mart isn’t doing so by choice, and that most of you are probably pretty well aware of the history behind the Black Friday Strikes

    Thoughtfully expressed. Thanks. As a likely majority of democrats fall into that category. Don’t hate the corp, force it to change.

  5. 5
    General Stuck says:

    And on the topic of those of us less financially endowed, a little known program for cheap internet, if you live in parts of the west.

    It’s called Century Link Lifeline, that used to be quest, and is a federal program to provide very cheap broadband internet for the disabled and low income. You have to live in a qwest region and have DSL available. But if you make under 16,000 per year, (that varies at 150 percent below the poverty level for your state, you can get 5 years worth of high speed internet for as low as 10 bucks a month. For some folks that could maybe scare up some extra cash to buy the beans in hard times.

    Comcast has a version of the program, but the greedy fuckers will only help out left handed saloon girls that have a kid on the school lunch program, or something like that. Poor and Proud.

  6. 6
    mai naem says:

    I watched the Walmart warehouse worker on Chris Hayes this past weekend. He makes $8/hr and the CEO makes $18 million a year. This is the CEO not the owners. The owners make even more. So the CEO makes in one day, more than three times what the warehouse worker makes in one year. And I would be willing to bet the warehouse worker gets crap if he gets fired or quits while the CEO has some massive golden parachute ready to go. Furthermore, the CEO’s perks are probably worth tens of thousands of dollars if not hundreds of thousands of dollars. If the Costco guy,who actually founded the company, can make it on $1 million a year and pay his workers haldway decent wages why can’t the Walmart CEO?

  7. 7
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    @mai naem: Greed. SATASQ

  8. 8
    Alison says:

    I wonder if the striking workers will attempt to have conversations with shoppers lined up outside…

    I mean, I doubt it would be easy to break through to some loser who is willing to camp overnight on a holiday just to save a few bucks on cheap crap they don’t need. But, you know, time and again we see how human interactions are the best way to get people to overcome things or see things in a new way…who knows…

  9. 9
    Anoniminous says:

    From here:

    The Waltons’ value — $89.5 billion in 2010 – is equal to the worth of the 41.5% of families at the lower end of the income ladder, according to an analysis by Josh Bivens of the Economic Policy Institute. That comes out to 48.8 million households.

    And all you trolls bleating about “They EARNED it!” can kiss my ass. The heir did nothing for that money except be born to Mr. and Mrs. Walton. Maybe they could get along on a mere $70 billion and pay their workers a living wage.

  10. 10
    MikeJ says:


    some loser who is willing to camp overnight on a holiday just to save a few bucks on cheap crap they don’t need.

    I’m fairly certain you won’t convince anyone if you open with “you’re a loser” and move on to calling the things they want to give their loved ones “cheap crap they don’t need.”

    Even Especially if it’s true.

  11. 11
    Mike in NC says:

    President Rmoney would have sought to abolish the minimum wage and cut taxes for all CEOs, and we saw that millions of Americans were totally OK with that.

  12. 12
    Steeplejack says:

    Ned Resnikoff at MSNBC flagged a leaked internal document [. . .] that revealed that base pay at Walmart’s Sam’s Place stores can be as low as $8 an hour (or $16,000 per year), with wage increases in increments as low as 20 or 40 cents per hour.

    I am shocked that the hard-nosed, street-savvy writers at MSNBC and/or HuffPo are shocked–shocked!–by this.

    It’s not just Wal-Mart, folks. Retail is the new sweatshop. As recently as a year ago (my last personal experience), the starting wage at Barnes & Noble was $7.50-8.00 an hour–“competitive in the retail industry” is how the CEO describes it–and annual raises of 25 or 50 cents an hour were the rule. Or nothing, if you had been there only nine months at raise time, say, or if they were trying to get rid of you, etc.

    I knew a guy who worked there for about 10 years, and he was told point blank that he had “maxed out”–at $12.00 an hour. And they still forced him out by screwing with his hours. He’s working at Trader Joe’s now.

    The dark secret of retail is that even workers at “nice” places are often making crappy wages.

  13. 13
    Alison says:

    @MikeJ: Well, obviously not. If I were to talk to them, I wouldn’t put it such a way. I figured the comments on BJ were a safe place to be ornery. Sheesh.

  14. 14
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    Call me cynical but unless the warehouse workers do a version of the Tienamen Square protest in front of the trucks, the media will say the strike fizzles. Worse, another YouTube video of Wal-Mart shoppers acting stupid.

  15. 15
    Yutsano says:

    @Anoniminous: Nonsense. Why, however will they show their face at the country club if they couldn’t buy their third colour-coordinatrd yacht? If anything we should be paying THEM for giving such minimum wage blessings upon the riffraff!

  16. 16
    👽 Martin says:

    @redshirt: The WalMart You Don’t Know

    “People ask, ‘How can it be bad for things to come into the U.S. cheaply? How can it be bad to have a bargain at Wal-Mart?’ Sure, it’s held inflation down, and it’s great to have bargains,” says Dobbins. “But you can’t buy anything if you’re not employed. We are shopping ourselves out of jobs.”

    There is no question that Wal-Mart’s relentless drive to squeeze out costs has benefited consumers. The giant retailer is at least partly responsible for the low rate of U.S. inflation, and a McKinsey & Co. study concluded that about 12% of the economy’s productivity gains in the second half of the 1990s could be traced to Wal-Mart alone.

    I’ve never stepped foot in a Walmart. Never will.

  17. 17
    efgoldman says:


    And all you trolls bleating about “They EARNED it!” can kiss my ass.

    One of the sports blowhards in Boston refers to team owners, especially in the NFL, as the “lucky sperm club.” He may be a blowhard, but he’s right.

  18. 18
    suzanne says:

    Haven’t been to Walmart in years. The last time I went in, I was looking to buy a box of Feria hairdye. Literally every box on the shelf of every brand of hairdye had been opened and crushed, and I could not find a single box that had all the components of the set. Considering how much everything was mixed up, I had no confidence that the dye in the box was actually the color labeled on the box, and so I didn’t buy anything.

    Aside from their labor abuses and driving local businesses to extinction and crappy Chinese products, the stores are just disgusting shitholes.

  19. 19
    Richard says:

    The Republican/conservative plan to restore prosperity to America:

    1. Wage destruction. Clearly, anyone who works for a living and expects more than minimum wage is greedy. Support laws and fiscal policies to insure that the downward spiral in wages rapidly increases in pace. In particular, destroy all unions once and for all.

    2. As the average salary approaches minimum wage, abolish the minimum wage so that salaries can be slashed even further. The goal should be to create a completely Walmartized society where the vast majority of people would qualify for food stamps and Medicaid, that is, if the GOP hadn’t already ended those and all other social safety net programs by then.

    3. All money saved by companies on wages will be used to reward investors and to increase executive compensation and bonuses, the latter to be payed out lavishly regardless of the company’s actual performance and the (in)competence of its management. No investments to improve and modernize product lines will be necessary, as the population won’t be able to afford them anyway.

    4. Success. Prosperity will be achieved, at least by the only people who really deserve it. Of course, the economy will inevitably collapse under such a plan, but the rich will have more money than god by then and won’t be able to spend it all before they are dead.

  20. 20
    redshirt says:

    @efgoldman: I just read a bit in Sports Illustrated about the owner of the St. Louis Rams – Stan Kroenke. Don’t know how much was propaganda, but he seemed to be a self made billionaire and mostly good guy. But a briefly referenced mention had me intrigued – he’s married to Anne Walton, and has been since 1973, and they file their taxes separately. So not even counted in the net worth of the Waltons is Kroenke, who happens to be worth many billions.

  21. 21
    efgoldman says:


    …crappy Chinese products…

    In lots of product lines, especially electronics, the products are Chinese no matter where you buy them. Bought a $500 iphone lately?

  22. 22
    TooManyJens says:


    If anything we should be paying THEM for giving such minimum wage blessings upon the riffraff!

    We are. They get tax incentives from cities. We effectively subsidize their labor costs by paying for the public assistance many of their employees need.

  23. 23
    suzanne says:

    @efgoldman: That’s true, and while, yes, I do have an iPhone, the quality of a lot of things like clothing, kids’ products, accessories, shoes, and so on from China really are crappy compared to American made. Considering that I spend far more on clothes and accessories than I do on electronics because I have a job for which I am expected to be stylishly dressed (does the paycheck reflect that? HA HA HA.), quality is equally as important to me as price. I’m sick of buying clothes that fall apart in the wash after just a couple wearings, or don’t fit right and then I need to spend time and/or money tailoring them.

  24. 24
    efgoldman says:


    I’m sick of buying clothes that fall apart in the wash after just a couple wearings, or don’t fit right and then I need to spend time and/or money tailoring them.

    But even middle-scale brand names, or store brands from mid-scale to upscale retailers, carry labels that they’re made in Honduras, Guatemala, Philippines, and many other third world countries. And that’s just in my closet.

  25. 25
    glocksman says:

    I work at the TJ Maxx Distribution Center here in Evansville, and I make only $14.40/hr after 16 years of service.

    And we’re a union shop.

    That said, what I gain from being a union member is that I cannot be fired without just cause (IN is an ‘at will’ employment state unless you’re covered under a union contract.) and decent benefits that include a union pension plan, a company sponsored 401k and decent health insurance that is approx. 75% paid by the company.

    IOW, if you go by wages alone, I’m not any better off than a Walmart DC worker.

    Though if you consider that over the last 10 years, my health insurance that paid out over $100K for my heart defect and recurring bleeding ulcer, I’m much better off.

  26. 26
    PurpleGirl says:

    @efgoldman: However some of those mid-scale brands you buy at other stores are made of better fabrics and are just made better and will last longer. I was buying much of my clothing at one store but then they began using thinner cotton knits and those tops didn’t hang/fall the way I like cotton tops to look. As so little in clothing is made in the US anymore, I look for the fabric and manufacturing quality when I buy clothes.

  27. 27
    Spiffy McBang says:

    @👽 Martin: And what they do leads to people shopping there because they can’t afford to do otherwise. I’d like to say I’ll never shop at a Walmart, but quite honestly my food bill would just get way too high at the local supermarket.

    But the flip side of that is, even if Demos’ math is off by half- if it would cause a 2% rise in prices for the full-timers at Walmart to make $25k- I’d make that trade. The savings would still be substantial. I just wonder, if the executives did that, would the shareholders sue a la what happened to Ford?

  28. 28
    suzanne says:

    @efgoldman: Perhaps. But Walmart’s quality is dramatically worse than even Target or H&M or Old Navy.

  29. 29
    glocksman says:


    Good suggestion.

    Frankly I see a *lot* of designer brands coming through our doors (TJX) that are either factory seconds or known blemished goods.

    Though I will say that we plainly state on the price hangtags that a product is blemished.

  30. 30
    Amanda in the South Bay says:


    Hey Glocksman, are you the same Glocksman from SD.Net?

  31. 31
    PurpleGirl says:

    @glocksman: Frankly I see a lot of designer brands coming through our doors (TJX) that are either factory seconds or known blemished goods.

    That’s the secret of “designer” discount and has been for some time. It may be a knock-off of the name brand and is of second quality but the consumer who is more concerned with a “name designer” goes to Tanger Outlet Mall or any of the others for the “bargins” and designer names. I’ve avoided those stores, too.

    Many times you can’t see or find the blemish, but I just prefer not to buy “designer” things.

  32. 32
    suzanne says:

    @PurpleGirl: I know I personally don’t care about labels, I just want clothes that fit well and have some style. Plus, my body type is such that cheaper clothes typically aren’t going to fit because I need more tailoring, so I am always trying to hit sales. I did some online shopping today because I was able to get 30% off sale prices, bringing the final total down 66% from retail. I have some coworkers that spend A LOT of time shopping designer and then turn around and sell the clothes after they wear them a few times, sometimes even turning a profit, but that is their primary hobby. No thank you.

  33. 33
    PurpleGirl says:

    @suzanne: I have been developing my own style for years. Designer names and labels aren’t what’s important to me, but fit is. But I’ve been observing clothes and shopping trends for a long time.

    I once went to Woodbury Common (a factory outlet mall in NYS) with a friend and I wasn’t impressed with either the choice of stores or the supposed discounts. Shopping once took up too much of my time.

  34. 34
    Cacti says:


    Perhaps. But Walmart’s quality is dramatically worse than even Target or H&M or Old Navy.

    The last time I bought a pair of “Levis” from Wal-Mart, the ass ripped out of them 2 weeks later when I was getting out of my car.

    Even “name brand” items there are pure shit.

  35. 35
    D0n Camillo says:

    John had a post earlier this week titled “They are their own worst enemies” and that is so true of Walmart. They could continue to get away with low wages and union busting if they would at least pay enough so that their employees could live and not fuck with their schedules. Instead, between the shit wages and just in time scheduling that wreaks havoc with part time employees’ lives, Walmart has put a number of workers in a position where they no longer have anything to lose because being fired is no worse than being employed. That’s just the sort of thing that bit Ceausescu in the ass. You’re omnipotent right up to the point where you’re no longer omnipotent.

  36. 36
    redshirt says:

    @Cacti: Separate manufacturing lines for Wal-Mart! Levi’s might suck at Wal-Mart but be great at Kohl’s. Or Levinsky’s.

    I’m still in awe of Wal-Mart’s power. I actually had to deal with Wal-Mart in 2003 and it required buying this ancient modem from a company that of course Wal-Mart owned. 9600 Baud y’all. For EDI. Wal-Mart bounced us 3 months into the project.

  37. 37
    D0n Camillo says:


    Or Levinsky’s.

    Are you from Maine?

  38. 38
    suzanne says:

    @Cacti: Yes. The merchandise is crap quality and crap design, the stores are messy and unpleasant, and the prices aren’t THAT much better to make up for the fact that shit you buy there falls apart ASAP. I am now in a position that I am not scraping to get by, thank FSM, though I am absolutely not even close to rich, but I can’t do Walmart. In addition to all their other sins, their shit isn’t worth even the low price they charge.

  39. 39
    Maude says:

    Levis at Kohls are thin denim and awful styles. I was there a few weeks ago looking. The problem with clothing around here is that is is cheaply made, but the prices are high. I am wearing jeans that are too big and at least 7 years old. The fabric is ten times better. I am wearing the old jeans until they wear out.
    Next year, Levis will be using ground up plastic bottles, made into polyester in their jeans. That is going to change them.
    The only place I’ve done well is Hanes at an Outlet Center.
    I went to Wall mart once and that was a few years ago. I ended up buying a can of coffee on sale and that was all.
    I can’t buy decent clothing here and there are two small malls and a large Outlet Center.
    This country has not go quality products as it used to. We need to get that back. The only way to do that is for the small start up companies to make quality goods. It will catch on.
    Oh, and as I am a bit thinish, it is very hard to find clothes that fit. So far, the Hanes stuff is for inside the home, so to speak. I have all used clothing I got years ago for outdoors. I’m lucky. That clothing is good.

  40. 40
  41. 41
    D0n Camillo says:

    @redshirt: Same here. Levinsky’s is an example of a low cost local clothing supplier that was basically wiped out by the likes of Walmart. I don’t know how well they paid their employees, but they seemed to be a lot more cheerful than any Walmart worker I’ve ever seen.

  42. 42
    redshirt says:

    @D0n Camillo: It was a fun store back in the day. They still exist, by the way!

    But anyway, this trend is not limited to clothing stores. Every market has experienced extreme survival pressures. Hardware stores? Pet stores? Eye glass places? Local coffee houses. You name it, every industry has been taken over by some national corp.

    Eventually there will be one store, that sells everything.

  43. 43
    pseudonymous in nc says:


    In lots of product lines, especially electronics, the products are Chinese no matter where you buy them.

    And they’re often not crappy any more, because the workers who spent years making crap are moving on up. Shoe production’s a good example: the crap or sweatshoppy end of the market has gone elsewhere in Asia, and you can now get a greater number and concentration of skilled stitchers and finishers there than anywhere else in the world.

    But the amount of actual bona fide crap in WalMart is remarkable, and it is very much responsible for reinforcing the insidious disconnect between the amount that consumer goods cost and the amount of money workers earn. Which is to say that Wally World very much likes its retail staff to be sufficiently poorly paid that they have to buy that crap — not so poor that they can’t afford it, but not so rich that they’d go to Target instead

  44. 44
    pseudonymous in nc says:


    As so little in clothing is made in the US anymore, I look for the fabric and manufacturing quality when I buy clothes.

    I sometimes joke that the best way to buy American these days is at thrift stores, and it’s fairly telling that for a good chunk of the wage-squeezed (and, I suppose, hipsters) the retail brand of first instance is Goodwill — and the bus stops right outside, just as it does for WalMart.

  45. 45
    TooManyJens says:

    @pseudonymous in nc: One thing I really like about thrift store shopping — well, second-hand shopping in general — is that you know that if the garment held up long enough to get to the secondhand store, it’s fairly durable.

  46. 46
    suzanne says:


    Eventually there will be one store, that sells everything.

    No way. Not with the rise of luxury culture and “branding”. Rich people like the Waltons don’t actually want to ever come near the rabble.

  47. 47
    D0n Camillo says:


    They still exist, by the way!

    It’s not the same. They have one location out in Windham a mile from a Walmart. They used to be a centerpiece of retail in Portland, Maine. I would always go there to their Munjoy Hill location at the start of every winter and load up on warm weather clothes. They always had the best selection of chamois shirts and long underwear.

  48. 48
    D0n Camillo says:


    Eventually there will be one store, that sells everything.

    I don’t live in Maine any more, but I was glad to see that there is now a Reny’s that provides the same service that Levinsky’s used to in Portland. You can’t really call yourself a city if you don’t have at least one store that sells affordable clothing downtown.

  49. 49
    glocksman says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    That would be me.
    Though I haven’t really commented much on lately because I reduced my board ‘hang time’, so to speak.

    That said, I suspect Mike hasn’t lost any of his acerbic wit. :)

  50. 50
    glocksman says:


    Heh, I’m a ‘big and tall’ (260 lbs. and 6 ft. tall) guy who can’t even shop at a TJ Maxx because they don’t have a ‘big and tall’ men’s department.

    Marshalls *does* though, and since TJX owns Marshalls, I get the 10% (20% about 5 times a year) employee discount.

    That’s not to say that I get everything I want in the style I want, but Marshalls is a *lot* less expensive than Casual Male or the locally owned ‘big and tall’ store.

  51. 51
    Joel says:

    IIRC, Safeway is even worse with regards to compensation, etc. Also, the products at Safeway are often no better.

  52. 52
    Gindy51 says:

    @redshirt: One store to rule tham all or “St. Peter doncha call me cuz I cain’t go, I owe my soul to the company store……”

  53. 53
    mai naem says:

    I know I sound like an old fart saying this but OMG I am sick and tired of the quality of stuff nowadays. Clothing is awful. Fabrics are thinner. Chinos used to be nice and thick. Now they are like regular thin pants. They use less thread threading the buttons to the clothing. The buttons are thinner so they actually fall apart. I had a couple of buttons at the collar which I basically do nothing with actually break in two. Are you kidding me? And the fit? You can order two same color same style pants and one will be loose and the other will be tight. WTF? And everything has to be a freaking blend. I don’t like synthetics and it’s getting tougher to find all cotton stuff period. Linens. I have some old large size towels I bought about 18 yrs ago that started falling apart five years ago and I still have a couple which are usable. I have some hand towels I bought over ten years ago, still in very good shape. Meanwhile, stuff I’ve bought in a past few years is already falling apart. Old 240 ct sheets, about twenty years old, still in good shape. Newer 300+ count sheets either look like crap or feel like crap. Even freaking tape – scotch tape is thinner. Office supplies like staplers and hole punchers etc. crappy quality. I have ancient staplers(30+ years) at home still working. At work, newer staplers which don’t even see the end of 12 mos. Furniture is the same. We had an old sofa set we got rid of several years ago because it was out of style not because it was worn. We’ve had two sets since which have worn out. Appliances -ditto. Washer lasted for 15 yrs. Frontloader which we paid 3x as much broke in 3-4 yrs. Bags – anything from backpacks to overnight bags – the material is thinner and they put in one zipper pull instead of two zipper pulls so that if one zipper pull breaks you can’t use the other zipper pull. I had a Jansport bag that I used almost everyday for eight years – abused it, spilled stuff in it,whatever – i finally had to stop using it because it was beginning to look ratty. I broke the one zipper pull and was using the other zipper pull. And you know what? This is not good for the environment. Landfill space is being used up because stuff falls apart because of poor quality.

  54. 54
    nerf herder says:

    The Walmart guy is a lying sack of bought and sold mercenary. Walmart doesn’t give a crap about whether it’s employees live in a constant state of anxiety over how they will manage to pay their next rent or utility bill. It’s all about greed and almost nothing about basic dignity and humanity. If you shop at Walmart you are feeding the beast and you are selling a little bit of your soul.

  55. 55
    Buckyblue says:

    @redshirt: you’re exactly right. A new form of understanding economics is with megalopolises controlling price. Supply and demand be damned.

  56. 56
    whidgy says:

    I’m guessing that anyone in the Balloon Juice readership who’s shopping at Wal-Mart isn’t doing so by choice,

    How about the K-Mart or Target or Sears or Best Buy- you know they pay their employees poorly as well.

    How about Amazon? Any Bj readers shopping there? You know they pay crappy wages and at one point some of their un-airconditioned warehouses were so hot that they had ambulances standing by for when workers passed out from the heat. Okay to shop there? Oh, they’re also destroying the book publishing business – at least according to book publishers?

    Look, I’d be all for increasing minimum wages across the board to a real living wage. (My scant economic learnin’ tells me that that would just result in inflation which would penalize everyone who was earning just a bit more than the new minimum wage, but, hell, I’d still give it a try.) That said, this Walmart hatin’ has more than just a whiff of classism to it.

  57. 57
  58. 58
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Mike in NC: And ironically, many Americans voted for Romney despite the fact that they are working class (barely making a living). I’m thinking of the Whites in the South who overwhelmingly supported him.

    I’m going to avoid Wal-Mart as much as possible. To be honest, before watching Up with Chris Hayes last Sunday morning, I had no idea that Wal-Mart associates earned less than $25,000 per year. Shocking that anyone could live off so little.

  59. 59
    rikyrah says:

    If not for my sister’s medicine at WalMart, I’d never set foot in the place.

  60. 60
    Ruckus says:

    @Patricia Kayden:
    I hate walmart with the heat of a thousand suns for what they have done and are doing this country. But they are not alone in this. Name any big corp who actually is better. Cosco, maybe. Any more?
    In the south(and many other places as well) a walmart job may be a whole lot better than what came before. And as well there is now someplace to shop that has stuff. It may be crappy stuff but compare it to 10-20 yrs ago and yes that mom and pop store got run out of business but it got run out because it didn’t meet the needs of all the potential customers. It is the reflection of the greedy that a crappy walmart job selling crappy stuff is becoming the norm. Even if you fix walmart(which I don’t see happening at all) what about the rest of it? The basic problem is economic inequality, not walmart.
    Walmart is the symptom, not the disease.

  61. 61
    Ruckus says:

    @Patricia Kayden:
    Just a side note that I left out above.
    Many, many people make much less than $25,000 per year. Me for example. Right now that would be a grand sum, a small problem I’d love to have. I imagine there are a number of posters on this blog in the same boat. There are any number doing just fine as we’ve heard here and in other posts. But many are just scrapping by if that. I just didn’t think I’d have to work till the day I die, which will probably be earlier than necessary from the stress of working till that day.

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