Why Do Liberals Hate Wal Mart?

Discussion in 'Economy' started by red states rule, Jun 2, 2006.

  1. red states rule
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    red states rule Senior Member

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    I will never understand the left in this country. For some reason, the left hates Wal Mart. I really would like to know why.
    Wal Mart makes huge sums of money for itself and the local, state, and federal government. It employs hundreds of thousands of people, and donates millions to charity.
    Wal Mart provides working people what they need and a very affordable price.
    Here are some possible reason why libs hate Wal Mart

    Their non-union members are happy
    Customer base probably voted for Bush
    Their parking lot is full of SUVs
    Customers watch Fox and NASCAR
    They hate American corporate success

    Anyone have any other possible reason?
     
  2. BaronVonBigmeat
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    BaronVonBigmeat Senior Member

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    * They put mom and pop stores out of business
    * They waste land
    * Their stores, like most commercial construction since 1950, are eyesores
    * Their stores lower property values, no one is particularly thrilled to have a Walmart build right next to them

    I don't think Walmart is really good or evil exactly, they are only responding logically to the set of incentives they have been given. Most of the negatives about them (and I don't deny all of them) are actually due to perverse government incentives: land use restrictions, building codes, and especially "free" government roads. Socialists have a hard-on for massive public works projects such as the interstate highway system, but then they don't like the tacky automobile-centric growth that those subsidies enable. If they were serious about curbing suburban sprawl, they'd auction off every bit of government roads to private companies.
     
  3. red states rule
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    red states rule Senior Member

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    In a free market system you either make it on your own or you don't. Wal Mart offers value and choice. If other stores cannot compete - to bad
    Wal Mart provides more jobs then all the mom and pop shops combined.
    Waste land? Would you rather it sit empty? When a Wal Mart goes up - more business pop up near it. Which creates more jobs and more tax money for the government
    The stores are far from an eyestore. Wal Marts are clean and well lit. They have changed the way most chain stores looked when I was growing up.
    I do not where you took economics but Wal Mart is a shot in the arm to property values. With over 100 million Americans walking into a Wal Mart every week, the growth around a Wal Mart is huge. With growth comes increased land values
    As I said, I do not understand why the left hates Wal MArt. It has to be their workers are not union workers. The Dems miss all thast money they can steal from the workers union in the form of contributions
     
  4. Mariner
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    Mariner Active Member

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    That's exactly the issue, RSR. In a free market system with no controls, there would be no fish in any stream in America (all would be polluted by PCBs, mine tailings, and simple dumping of pollution). There would be no occupational health and safety rules. Employers could hire whomever they wanted, regardless of sex, age, race, etc. There would be no weekend. All these things are created by liberal concern for balancing the engine of capitalism with concern for its side effects.

    Walmart pushes up against some of cherished liberal beliefs, which are generally liked by all Americans, in several ways, from the (lower) wages it pays its workers, to accusations of sexism in promotions, to providing minimal or no benefits in some markets (Walmart workers in China have greater benefits that some in America).

    Think about it--in the old days, the largest employers (such as GM), protected by tariffs and stronger redistributive taxation, were able to provide true "head of household" wages and benefits. Walmart, the new largest employer, pays far less, and with almost no benefits.

    To some extent, these changes are the result of globalization--cheap labor available around the world reduces workers' pay. But another big chunk of it comes from Republican/conservative unwillingness to recognize the downsides of unfettered capitalism.

    Here's another issue with Walmart--in a dozen or so states, their workers are the single largest group of users of Medicaid services. In other words, all of us are subsidizing the company by paying its employees' health care costs--while competitors that actually try to provide health insurance to their employees, are outcompeted on price.

    So, I don't shop at Walmart.

    Mariner
     
  5. red states rule
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    red states rule Senior Member

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    If Wal Mart is so bad, why do people work there? I shop Wal Mart every week. I see the same people working there week after week. They are not chained to their registers or their work area
    I buy nearly everything from Wal Mart. Food, clothes, cleaning supplies, pet food, all at a fair price.
    The bottom line is, those "cherished liberal beliefs" are falling into the dustbin of history. The big issue with libs is NO UNIONS
    Unions have destroyed GM and the numbers of union workers if falling. The Democrat party can no longer steal unlimited amount of money from those workers (in dues the union bosses take fromt he workers) to finance their elections.
    Yes free markets have no government controls. In did not work in the old Soviet Union and they will not work here.
     
  6. rtwngAvngr
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    rtwngAvngr Guest

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    All those great GM benefits turned out to be untenable lies. That's what socialism in general is.
     
  7. red states rule
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    red states rule Senior Member

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    People are starting to see unions, liberalism, and socialism are sure fire ways to destroy a business and the economy
     
  8. BaronVonBigmeat
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    BaronVonBigmeat Senior Member

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    I probably came across the wrong way there, so let me clarify. I don't have a problem with Walmart (or any private entity) doing what they want with their property. If it's a free market and they compete, they should be able to do what they want.

    The trouble is, we really don't live in a free market. Walmart and other mega-box stores are dependent on high volume since their margins are so low, and how do you get large volumes of people? With "free" subsidized government roads of course. If you had a system of private free-market roads, you'd be paying per mile, and smaller scale close-by retail would be more attractive. Or, Walmart and other big box stores might have to pay a hefty chunk of change to a road company to help deal with the traffic problem they create.

    Mom and Pop shops: I don't actually care who wins, I was just parroting other people's arguments :)

    Waste land: I don't actually care, so long as your business model isn't subsidized by government (for the record, many localities have parking lot minimums in their building code, so you often see Walmarts and malls with parking lots that are never ever full. What a waste, thanks government regulations!)

    I hate to say it, but their stores are an eyesore, just like most post-war architecture. If you want to see what a non-eyesore looks like, check out a town built pre-WWII. That's part of the reason for so much NIMBY-ism. People try and build nice houses, and then Walmarts, apartments, and other builders of concrete boxes try and move in next door. But again, this is a case of bad government regulations and incentives. Property taxes favor the cheapest possible buildings, and the federal tax code favors cheap disposable buildings.

    The rest of your arguments are probably true, quite honestly.
     
  9. rtwngAvngr
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    rtwngAvngr Guest

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    Yes. WalMart is unfairly EXTERNALIZING the cost of transportation to their store. You're a freak.
     
  10. red states rule
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    red states rule Senior Member

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    Wal Mart wants to sell gas below their COST. Gues who is stopping them? The government and enviro wackos who say it is "unfair"
     

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