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The problem with press releases and economic gorilla dust is no one bothers to do the math. So, Wal-Mart will get a lot of hugs and free good press from announcing that it will raises workers’ wages–but the truth is it’s still a sham. People working for Wal-Mart will still live in poverty. The only positive part of the announcement–though unintended–is how Wal-Mart’s announcement shows how pathetic the pre-election (is it even still on the agenda?) White House-Democratic Party’s signature minimum wage proposal is.
This is just a renegade company that can’t help itself. Greed is endemic.
I wonder what the genius in the White House, who organized the president’s celebration of Wal-Mart this past week, will say now. Or was it the president who thought, “gee, Wal-Mart, now there’s a model to hold up”. Just to aid anyone who had any doubts about the kind of company the Beast of Bentonville really is, Wal-Mart is happy to effectively lie to make sure its executives get their huge bonuses.
Each day comes another example of stupid, confusing, contradictory messaging from the president. Maybe the whole thing about inequality and raising the minimum wage is, for the president, just an exercise in politics. But, man, get the fucking politics right. Which does not include embracing Wal-Mart.
Over the years, I’ve consistently referred to Wal-Mart as The Beast of Bentonville because of its conduct at every level. Beastly. And, now, it’s topping even the despicable low standards it set to date. To the families of more than 1,200 people killed, and many more injured, who are seeking a bit of compensation money, the Beast of Bentonville is raising its corporate middle finger and saying “get fucked”.
The biggest threat to the Wal-Mart profit-through-poverty-wages model continues to hold on to a lead in the ballot count. That would be the initiative to raise the minimum wage to $15-an-hour in the city of SeaTac. It’s almost a done deal — though the fight won’t end once the vote is certified.
I’ve always laughed every time Wal-Mart rolls out its newest pitch to fill its coffers — and make the Waltons even wealthier than they already are — by invoking patriotism. Waving the flag and crying “Buy American” has very little to do with helping working Americans. Because it’s still based on low wages for everyone.