Home > Uncategorized > Walmart’s fingerprints on Bangladesh fire that killed 112

Walmart’s fingerprints on Bangladesh fire that killed 112

Walmart's responsible for how many deaths?!

Walmart’s responsible for how many deaths?!

Hat tip to Plain Jane

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-12-05/wal-mart-nixed-paying-bangladesh-suppliers-to-fight-fire.html

“Specifically to the issue of any corrections on electrical and fire safety, we are talking about 4,500 factories, and in most cases very extensive and costly modifications would need to be undertaken to some factories,” they said in the document. “It is not financially feasible for the brands to make such investments.”

– a Walmart director of ethical sourcing (!); more than 700 Bangladeshi garment workers have died since 2005

http://www.thenation.com/blog/171628/documents-undermine-walmart-account-deadly-bangladesh-fire

And an online petition:

http://www.credoaction.com/campaign/walmart_bangladesh/?p=walmart_bangladesh

  1. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 9:26 am | #1

    From the Bloomberg article:

    (Walmart’s “director of ethical sourcing”) — “Specifically to the issue of any corrections on electrical and fire safety, we are talking about 4,500 factories, and in most cases very extensive and costly modifications would need to be undertaken to some factories,” they said in the document. “It is not financially feasible for the brands to make such investments.”

    Pay to make our factories safer? That sounds communist. Dammit people, have you no sympathy for our low, low prices?

  2. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 9:43 am | #2

    Walmart, being the largest wholesale buyer of clothing in the world, is the only one with the power to demand safe working conditions by their contractors and subcontractors. They manufacture in third world countries which won’t enforce even their own lax safety standards, won’t allow the workers to organize on their own behalf and have a vast labor supply waiting to replace those who die. If you think they care any more about Americans than they do Bangladeshis, you might be delusional. Too bad their clothing doesn’t look as blood stained as it is.

  3. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 10:09 am | #3

    I’m sure those workers were grateful for the 10 cents an hour and the opportunity to be immolated. No one forced them to work there. Plus, it happened on the other side of the world, so I don’t have to think about it the next time I stop in for incredible savings. All hail low prices. Every day.

  4. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 10:11 am | #4

    You forget there was many other retailers that used that same factory. Sears comes to mind.

  5. December 7, 2012 at 10:18 am | #5

    #4,

    I don’t know for a fact that Sears used the same factory, but it wouldn’t surprise me. What we’ve been seeing is a race to the bottom, led by Walmart. If you don’t keep up, you won’t stay in business. As always, the real crime is simply what’s legal. Only piker criminals need to break the law to become wealthy; criminal experts realize it’s not hard to stay within the law, especially when it’s easy to buy legislation.

  6. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 10:33 am | #6

    #4 — Look over there! Never mind, it’s gone now. What were we talking about?

    So far the press hasn’t uncovered a document where Sears flat-out says, “700 garment workers dead since 2005? Sorry, safety improvements are too expensive. We aren’t chipping in.”

  7. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 10:38 am | #7

    Sears and other retailers also used that factory, some unknowingly by subcontractors. But Walmart sets the industry standards and has the global power and wealth to demand safe working conditions by their manufacturing contractors. Excusing Walmart’s manufacturing in slave wage countries by pointing at smaller corporations following suit ignores the fact that it was Walmart’s constant demand for always lower labor (and higher profits) that left other retailers with few choices (and no competitive choices) as their suppliers offshored to meet Walmart’s price demands.

  8. Dave Kirby
    December 7, 2012 at 10:43 am | #8

    Amazon …. no local jobs at any wage. Has anyone checked the conditions at the plants that they buy from? The race to the bottom aint the problem. It’s the internet octopus that will have the biggest effect on local retailers in this country.

  9. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 10:49 am | #9

    Isn’t it weird that the people who blame the Bangladeshi government for not enforcing safety regulations are the same people who believe the free market will solve all problems and corporations can be trusted to self-regulate? Contracting and subcontracting and sub-subcontracting for lower labor (and more middle man bites) gives these corporations slight deniability, but the fact remains that it is their demand for the lowest possible costs that perpetuates the dangerous factories and government corruption that enslaves and kills the destitute so we can fill our garbage dumps faster.

  10. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 10:51 am | #10

    Local businesses can sell on Amazon too, Dave. They can’t at Walmart.

    https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/

  11. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 10:55 am | #11

    Mitch, it was right in the links you have about Sears. PJ’s argument is that it is ok to jump off the bridge if others have done it too. #6 the meeting was many retailers. In the links given by Mitch, Wal-Mart said that factory was deauthorized months ago before the fire to supply Wal-Mart.

  12. Plain Jane
  13. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 11:01 am | #13

    Don’t paraphrase what I said incorrectly, #11. I never said it was okay for anyone to manufacture in unsafe factories. What I am saying is that other retailers have little choice where to buy because Walmart is the business that all wholesalers want most, being the biggest and growing. I don’t think we as a decent country should allow products to be imported that are made by exploited and endangered workers. PERIOD!

  14. Just Watchin
    December 7, 2012 at 11:19 am | #14

    Kevin Gardner, a Walmart spokesman, said the company stopped authorizing production at Tazreen “many months before the fire.” Walmart warned on two seperate inspections that Tazreen was in violation of fire codes.
    This article puts responsibility where it belongs:on the local government:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/07/bangladesh-factory-fire_n_2256741.html?utm_hp_ref=business

  15. December 7, 2012 at 11:26 am | #15

    From your link, JW:

    “These factories should be closed, but it is not an easy task,” the fire official said. “We need to follow a protracted legal battle. Always there is pressure because the owners are influential. They can manage everything.”

    The Nov. 24 fire tore through the ground floor of the behemoth white, concrete factory, which fills most of a block in the Dhaka suburb of Savar. About 1,400 employees were cutting fabric and sewing clothes for Wal-Mart, Disney and other Western brands.

    Local governments are no match for world capitalism. In a fight between Walmart and a local fire official in an impoverished country, we all know who wins and who loses. People had been campaigning for years to get Walmart to take action.

    The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire was a major turning point for unions in the United States. Now that dangerous working conditions are illegal in the US, thanks to unions, places like Walmart fight unions at home and ship jobs to places that remain unprotected. They refuse the additional pennies per garment that it would take to improve working conditions, but will always maintain implausible deniability in hopes of avoiding jail for their executives.

  16. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 11:28 am | #16

    Quick! There just is not enough Chinese workers! They need to stop that one child nonsense and reproduce, reproduce! PJ thinks they are endangered!

  17. Erasmus
    December 7, 2012 at 11:31 am | #17

    Thank you for the link, “Just Watchin” — I hope that those who have tried to score political points from the tragedy in Bangladesh will rethink their positions. The constant “blame America first” attitude is tiresome.

  18. Just Watchin
    December 7, 2012 at 11:32 am | #18

    Even if you don’t shop at Walmart, you might want to check the labels on the clothing in your closets:
    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/workers-die-factories-tommy-hilfiger/story?id=15966305

  19. December 7, 2012 at 11:34 am | #19

    No one is blaming America, Erasmus, unless you think Walmart is America. Maybe you do.

  20. Just Watchin
    December 7, 2012 at 11:37 am | #20
  21. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 12:01 pm | #21

    If America denied importation of products made by exploited and endangered people, their corrupt governments would have to improve conditions or lose our business. Walmart and other retailers wouldn’t have a choice as to whether or not their products were made in safe conditions, at least those which they hope to sell here. It the labor cost for the jacket doubled, oh well! If a seamstress can make 40 jacket hoods in an hour for 28 cents, (less than a penny a piece) you know the labor costs for the whole jacket can’t be more 10 cents. It is unconscionable to allow products to be sold here which are manufactured under conditions which would violate our own labor, health, safety and environmental laws and it undermines what remains of our moral stature.

    For #16
    Endangered: Exposure to danger.

  22. Just Watchin
    December 7, 2012 at 12:10 pm | #22

    I wonder how many people on here “walk the walk” and check labels before they buy products, to see where they were manufactured.

  23. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 12:16 pm | #23

    #22 — I do with everything I buy. Just because you can’t avoid buying Made in China sometimes doesn’t mean you have to wholeheartedly embrace Wal-Mart’s effect on the labor market, both here and abroad. Or bury your head in the sand and pretend that there is no Wal-Mart effect.

  24. Thorstein Veblen
    December 7, 2012 at 12:33 pm | #24

    Gotta love free trade. It benefits everybody, everywhere.

  25. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 1:42 pm | #25

    Like PJ says, this is the face of self-regulation. Good thing that the Bangladeshi gov’t didn’t try to hamper its job-creators with anything as burdensome as safety regulations. Otherwise those 112 people might not have had the benevolent opportunity to know the dignity of work.

  26. Dave Kirby
    December 7, 2012 at 2:45 pm | #26

    Mitch you really need to get your facts straight. There’s a lot wrong with Wal-Mart but inaccurate B.S. charges like this one only serve to put genuine criticism in doubt.

  27. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 2:48 pm | #27

    Did you read all the news sources about it Dave? Do you really think the NY Times, the WaPost, Huffington and Bloomberg are all conspiring to smear Walmart with inaccurate charges? I’m sure it is reported elsewhere too, but don’t let that sway you.

  28. Erasmus
    December 7, 2012 at 2:53 pm | #28

    Mitch —- no, Wal-Mart is not America, but in many people’s minds the two are confounded, as synecdoche (a part standing for a whole) deploys its rhetorical power.

  29. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 2:57 pm | #29

    Costco the anti-Walmart

    http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C07E1DB1030F934A25754C0A9639C8B63

    Guess which one Wall Street likes best.

  30. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 3:31 pm | #30

    That NYT article is spot-on. If Costco starting behaving like Wal-Mart, I would no longer shop there. On another note, it’s pretty impressive how many “Made in America” items you can find there.

  31. Mitch
    December 7, 2012 at 3:50 pm | #31

    Dave,

    What do you think is in error in the post, or in the links it uses? Thanks.

  32. Dave Kirby
    December 7, 2012 at 3:54 pm | #32

    Jane I don’t know what you’re referring to but the Huffington article that is linked here blames the lax government response and alludes to the fact that WM was led to believe that they no longer were using this outfit. And spare me the broad brush treatment of the evils of capitalism comrade.

  33. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 4:18 pm | #33

    The HuffPo article says that although Wal-Mart claims to have moved its productions out of that factory long ago, “an AP reporter who visited the factory last week found Wal-Mart brands were still being made there. The company said a supplier – who has since been fired – had moved Wal-Mart production there without its knowledge.”

    But the Nation article and the NYT one it links to say that there’s evidence at least 3 Wal-Mart suppliers used that factory this year.

    Dave, are you buying Wal-Mart’s “one bad apple” routine?

  34. Plain Jane
    December 7, 2012 at 4:42 pm | #34

    If Walmart and other large retailers refused to do business with contractors whose factories are unsafe and made sure their contractors didn’t subcontract to these factories, the officials would enforce their laws out of financial necessity if not human kindness. Walmart knew their garments were being made there and they knew conditions were unsafe, read the NY Times article. You know if Walmart demanded safe working conditions, no contractor would dare refuse them.

    “Walmart and Sears have since said they fired the suppliers that subcontracted work to Tazreen Fashions. Yet some critics have questioned how a company like Walmart, one of the two biggest buyers in Bangladesh and renowned for its sophisticated global supply system, could have been unaware of the connection.”

    and

    “Tazreen Fashions is part of a larger garment conglomerate, the Tuba Group, which owns at least half a dozen apparel factories in Bangladesh. Mr. Hossain said a team from Walmart’s local office conducted a compliance audit last year and faulted the factory for excessive overtime, while making no mention of fire safety or other issues. Moreover, he said, the local buying houses had also inspected and approved the factory, tantamount, he assumed, to approval from Walmart and the other global brands these middlemen represented.”

    And Erasmus, “Wal-Mart is not America, but in many people’s minds the two are confounded” is all the more reason to oppose the exploitation of the world’s poorest people so the Walton’s can hoard a few more billion each year. No one should be allowed to import products made under conditions we wouldn’t allow. How many pennies more would you pay for an item that wasn’t made in a factory where the workers were in deadly danger every day? How much more to pay them a decent wage? The Waltons will save $180 MILLION on their taxes by taking dividends in December before their tax breaks expire. Do you really think they would go broke if they demanded and made sure that their products were not made in dangerous factories by contractors, subcontractors or sub-sub-sub-sub-contractors? Walmart could do this without pain and we, as decent human beings, should demand it or refuse to shop there: We apply pressure to Walmart and they apply pressure to contractors and govt officials. It’s the right thing to do.

  35. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 4:45 pm | #35

    Plain Jane :
    You know if Walmart demanded safe working conditions, no contractor would dare refuse them.

    Says it all right there.

  36. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 5:02 pm | #36

    Of course then my Charmin’ 24-pack of toilet paper would probably cost $12.98 or even (gasp) $12.99, not $12.97.

  37. Dave Kirby
    December 7, 2012 at 7:12 pm | #37

    Anon 4:18….. I guess what bothers me is the fact that there is so little American made anywhere. Wal-Mart is no better or worse than the vast majority of companies in that their main manufacturing plants are overseas. What I”d like to hear is some ideas as to how we change that dynamic. I’ll be 70 in several years and have been lucky enough to have seen wonderful things in my stay here on earth but I do fear for the future on an overheated planet in more ways than one.

  38. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 7:39 pm | #38

    For sure, Dave, that bothers me too. Right now all you can do is spend your money (where you can afford it) on Made is America merchandise. What I do is try to buy as little Made in China merchandise as possible, because I don’t believe in supporting an upcoming superpower who will someday be our ideological opponent, regardless of how low a profile they try to keep at present. Support people who are willing to vote for bills like the Bring Jobs Home Act, which would give a 20% tax break for the costs of moving jobs back to the United States, and would kill the deductions that businesses who move operations overseas are allowed to take. Don’t worry too much about the planet, though. It will survive humans, though we will probably not survive ourselves.

  39. jr
    December 7, 2012 at 8:32 pm | #39

    I run an independent bookstore and many of the books I stock are printed in China. Same with calendars and journals. I think the only full-line publishing house that does not print in China (or elsewhere) is Naturegraph Publishing located in Happy Camp, California.

  40. Anonymous
    December 7, 2012 at 8:55 pm | #40

    Change has gotta start somewhere, jr.

  41. mel-z
    December 8, 2012 at 4:26 am | #41

    The use of the photo and caption was in extremely poor taste, and IMO not remotely funny.

  42. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 6:38 am | #42

    This entire thread has been about “Walmart hating” disguised as concern about the safety of Bangladesh worker safety. Half of the retailers in America manufacture in Bangladesh. And when inconvienent facts like Walmart stopped doing business with Tazreen, or that they cited them twice for safety issues months before the fire, they are glossed over because they don’t fit the “Evil Walmart” rant. ALL of the retailers doing business there are involved. And the “local government can’t do anything” mantra is bogus.
    Read the labels before you buy. WALK THE WALK. Talk is cheap.

  43. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 7:03 am | #43

    And three people were arrested yesterday about locking doors in the factory, preventing escape. I’m sure someone on here will exhonerate the three, since it must have been the ghost of Sam Walton who locked the doors.

  44. December 8, 2012 at 7:52 am | #44

    Dave Kirby asks the right questions, while JW continues to offer the wrong answers.

    Both Democratic and Republican administrations sold out American values for the noble-sounding “free trade.” The protesters who were so furious about the WTO knew precisely what they were talking about, but “free trade” just sounds so noble most of use were hoodwinked.

    Free trade is a great idea in the abstract; as exercised in practice it’s been used to allow capital to escape from the regulations generations of American unions fought to get put in place. The solution — and I have no idea if this is legal, let alone practical — is to allow honest free trade, where products can be imported into the US without tariff, but only when the processes used in their creation fully meet the law that would have applied in the US.

    JW might be a good poker player but, from the evidence of his comments here, he’d be lousy at chess. He consistently refuses to see the big picture, focusing instead on the pawns. The big players set up the environment, the rules, and the attitudes. No, I’m sure it wasn’t a Union Carbide executive who made the final mistake that caused the Bhopal tragedy. I’m sure it wasn’t a BP executive who made the final mistake that oiled the gulf. And I’m sure it wasn’t a Walmart executive who lit this fire. They just prepare the way.

    As long as the blame always goes to the sacrificed pawns, people can feel comfortable in ignoring the naughty knights and bishops, let alone the king and queen.

    Oh, and to mel-z at #41, I can understand why someone might consider the pic and caption in poor taste. To me, it represents our collective failure to understand that the corporate and business mentality evidenced by Walmart is sociopathic and amounts to a willingness to tolerate predictable mass murder. I’ve intentionally tried to ramp up the outrage and bitterness levels of the pics, hoping to shake people a bit. I’d be curious how others feel about the pic and caption. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work.

  45. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 8:12 am | #45

    Mitch: “The big players set up the environment, the rules, and the attitudes.”
    I agree Mitch. Like I said…..ALL the retailers doing business are involved. But how many times in this thread did you see the names of Disney,Nike,Adidas,Puma,Tommy Hilfiger, P Ditty (or whatever he goes by these days), and others? Lots of people on here could give two shits about worker safety, but jump on the opportunity to single out Walmart. It’s sad really.
    And yea…..the pic and caption was in poor taste…..even moronic. BUT, it gave you a chance to exploit another tragedy to hate on Walmart.
    Read labels before you buy. WALK THE WALK for a change.

  46. December 8, 2012 at 8:14 am | #46

    JW,

    Of course there are more retailers involved than Walmart. Walmart is by far the biggest fish, and it sets the approach. When people complain about President Obama, they may have in mind something one of his administration’s officials has done. But they talk about “Obama” as a shortcut. Same thing here.

  47. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 8:34 am | #47

    “At the April 2011 meeting in Dhaka, the Bangladesh capital, retailers discussed a contractually enforceable memorandum that would require them to pay Bangladesh factories prices high enough to cover costs of safety improvements. Sridevi Kalavakolanu, a WAL-MART DIRECTOR OF ETHICAL SOURCING, told attendees the company WOULDN’T SHARE THE COST, according to Ineke Zeldenrust, international coordinator for the Clean Clothes Campaign, who attended the gathering. Kalavakolanu and her counterpart at Gap reiterated their position in a report folded into the meeting minutes, obtained by Bloomberg News.”

    Walmart and other giant retailers know there are serious safety issues with third world factories and not just in Bangladesh. 262 garment workers burned to death in Karachi in September in a “certified safe” factory. “Certified safe” meaning essentially the factory owners have paid for certification without actually being safe. They have no incentive to make sure their garments are made in safe factories when they aren’t held accountable for what their contractors and subcontractors do, especially when they refuse to pay enough for manufacturing to provide safe work places. They know their contracts are subcontracted and sub-subcontracted and that with every subcontract the profits on garments (and the ability to provide safe working conditions and decent pay) declines as each contractor takes a piece of the profits.

  48. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 8:47 am | #48

    “In October, Gap outlined a four-part plan to make Bangladesh garment factories safer. It included hiring a chief fire safety inspector to inspect factories, giving suppliers as much as $20 million in capital to make safety improvements and working with the Bangladesh and U.S. governments as well as the International Labor Organization to “promote comprehensive change.”

    For a fraction of the taxes the Walton’s are going to save by receiving their dividends in December rather than January ($180 million) they could pay the $20 million needed to upgrade the Bangladeshi factories to make them safe or pay higher prices to contractors so they could afford to provide safe working conditions. If they cared about the people who work so hard and long to make them rich, they would do so.

    People should understand the horrific consequences of their choices on vulnerable people. If we refuse to buy, or work for legislation to restrict import of products made in unsafe and unfair conditions, the retailers will be forced to change their business plan. If we continue to buy from them to save a few pennies, we are as inhumane as they are. I don’t want people burning to death for low prices and I don’t want that business model to prevail over more ethical models leaving us without a choice.

  49. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 8:49 am | #49

    So why didn’t the other retailers WALK THE WALK and step up and sign the memorandum? I would think that they could have used it as a marketing tool against Walmart. You know…ads like “we support higher wages in Bangladesh, but our competition doesn’t”. It’s because they know that Walmart will be the one thrown under the bus and vilified while they stand aside and run their operations under the same rules as Walmart.
    Read the labels. Check your closets……WALK THE WALK !

  50. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 9:02 am | #50

    At the April 2011 meeting in Dhaka, the Bangladesh capital, retailers discussed a contractually enforceable memorandum that would require them to pay Bangladesh factories prices high enough to cover costs of safety improvements. Sridevi Kalavakolanu, a WAL-MART DIRECTOR OF ETHICAL SOURCING, told attendees the company WOULDN’T SHARE THE COST”

    WALMART HAS REFUSED TO PAY THE HIGHER PRICES REQUIRED FOR SAFER WORKING CONDITIONS.

    Walmart is the biggest American buyer of third world factory products. Smaller companies can’t pay Walmart’s share of safety costs and stay in business. Walmart drives the costs of manufacturing down, always seeking lower labor costs and fewer regulations. Their competitors follow or fail and they gain greater market share.

  51. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 9:13 am | #51

    BJ still refuses to accept that any other retailer could do something positive on their own. What about Tommy Hilfiger? They have the same manufacturing costs as Walmart, yet charge a premium price. (just dawned on me that being higher end, BJ may not be familiar with the brand name). You really think that Hilfiger would fail? And yet the Queen of Walmart haters couldn’t find time to protest outside the Walmart during the “fair wage” march. Talk is cheap.

  52. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 9:20 am | #52

    I can’t believe I’m wasting so much time on someone who is so clueless, but I’ll give it one last try.

    If other retailers commit to paying higher prices to improve working conditions and Walmart refuses (as they have) the other much smaller retailers will be subsidizing Walmart’s manufacturing expenses and hurting their own ability to compete. It shouldn’t be an option.

  53. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 10:00 am | #53

    But the target market for clothing from Walmart and Hilfiger are at opposite ends of the buying spectrum, as is the line made by P Ditty. Speaking of P Ditty, seems that he has set the price for a human life. Any outrage here?
    http://www.atoast2wealth.com/tag/p-diddy-clothing-line-pay-families/

  54. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 10:07 am | #54

    The false equivalency here is that smaller retailers being willing to pay their share of needed industry upgrades and higher pay, but not willing to pay Walmart’s share in addition to their own, makes them as culpable as Walmart for the unsafe working conditions.

  55. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 10:27 am | #55

    So hung up on Walmart hate that there’s none left for P Ditty. Very sad indeed.

  56. Just Wankin
    December 8, 2012 at 10:56 am | #56

    Just Wankin’ continues to troll… We really shouldn’t be contributing to ‘wankin’s’ need for attention.

  57. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 11:20 am | #57

    Just Wankin :Just Wankin’ continues to troll… We really shouldn’t be contributing to ‘wankin’s’ need for attention.

    Guess that’s two people that agree with Ditty that a human life is worth $1200.

  58. December 8, 2012 at 12:16 pm | #58

    Repeal or rewrite NAFTA! Enviro and labor protection for all! AND tariffs for those who insist on outsourcing anyway………….

  59. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 2:29 pm | #59

    Since BJ likes to talk about Walmart paying dividends early to avoid excessive BarryO taxes, I wonder what she might say about the democrat convention speaker and Costco president Jim Sinegal doing likewise, only he went out and BORROWED money to pay it early. Nice article here with pic of Jim and crazy uncle Joe Biden:
    http://blog.heritage.org/2012/12/04/costco-to-pay-out-big-dividend-before-obama-tax-hikes-hit/

  60. December 8, 2012 at 2:51 pm | #60

    ‘BJW’, this is getting sad. Don’t you find anything interesting to do in Florida?

    On the side of fairness, occasionally you do come up with something of interest. But.

    And insulting Jane constantly? Maturity would show better.

  61. Anonymous
    December 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm | #61

    “And insulting Jane constantly? Maturity would show better”

    Are you fucking kidding me? PJ hurls out insults by the barrel. “Maturity would show better” for her as well.

    And how about Mitch? A hearty “fuck you” to someone who makes a valid point regarding his mutiple threads on the same issue.

    I do agree though Narration, an insult free blog would be nice, but don’t act like its coming from one poster or one side of the political spectrum.

  62. Just Watchin
    December 8, 2012 at 3:57 pm | #62

    And my fan club has spoken!!! BJ’s “holier than thou” attitude is the reason no one takes her seriously anymore.

  63. Anonymous
    December 8, 2012 at 4:04 pm | #63

    I hope you’re referring to Narration as your fan club because it certainly isnt me.

  64. anonymous
    December 8, 2012 at 4:07 pm | #64

    “Everybody’s got the runs for glory, but nobody stops to scrutinize the plan.”–Paul Simon

  65. Plain Jane
    December 8, 2012 at 6:28 pm | #65

    JW’s BJ obsession is funny. What seemed like a possible excuse for his functional illiteracy (dyslexia) is apparently a juvenile attempt at an insult and the reason for his lack of reading comprehension remains a mystery.

  66. Just Watchin
    December 9, 2012 at 6:50 am | #66

    Narration :‘BJW’, this is getting sad. Don’t you find anything interesting to do in Florida?
    On the side of fairness, occasionally you do come up with something of interest. But.
    And insulting Jane constantly? Maturity would show better.

    Hey Narration……care to rethink your defense of poor little Jane? She’s been unusually upset since her affair with Moviedad was outed. The community must really be buzzin ! Even though she’s considered a joke, she still lives for the attention.

  67. December 9, 2012 at 8:08 am | #67

    Just Watchin,

    You may not have noticed, but everyone around here seems to pay attention to what PJ says, and what Narration says. They may not agree, but they listen with interest.

    Have you noticed what people have to say to you?

  68. Just Watchin
    December 9, 2012 at 8:20 am | #68

    No surprise that you would defend BJ Mitch. But then, you didn’t express any outrage when P Ditty established $1200 as the price of a human life.

  69. December 9, 2012 at 8:50 am | #69

    JW,

    First, I don’t know what you’re talking about, and I’m not planning on investigating P Ditty on the web. But, more importantly, I doubt that P Ditty, Q Ditty, or even Z Ditty has the same impact on wages as Walmart.

  70. Just Watchin
    December 9, 2012 at 8:57 am | #70

    Mitch :
    JW,
    First, I don’t know what you’re talking about, and I’m not planning on investigating P Ditty on the web. But, more importantly, I doubt that P Ditty, Q Ditty, or even Z Ditty has the same impact on wages as Walmart.

    Hit the link on post #53, then consider the public rage if Walmart had made the same offer.

  71. December 9, 2012 at 9:18 am | #71

    OK, JW, I looked. Do you think there should be a law that celebrity endorsers be liable for what manufacturer’s using their name do? (I don’t think it would be a bad idea at all.) If P Diddy is a mensch, he’d at least return anything he received from the clothing line to the families. But, for all I know, he’s part of the same system that adores Walmart. Aren’t rappers proud of their “bling?”

  72. Just Watchin
    December 9, 2012 at 9:30 am | #72

    And if Walmart had made the same offer???

  73. December 9, 2012 at 9:38 am | #73

    It would have been the end of Walmart, JW.

  74. December 9, 2012 at 9:40 am | #74

    Nope, wrong. I can never get cynical enough: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhopal_disaster

  75. December 9, 2012 at 9:46 am | #75

    From the Wikipedia link above:

    On 3 December 2004, the twentieth anniversary of the disaster, a man claiming to be a Dow representative named Jude Finisterra was interviewed on BBC World News. He claimed that the company had agreed to clean up the site and compensate those harmed in the incident, by liquidating Union Carbide for US$12 billion.[84][85] Immediately afterward, Dow’s share price fell 4.2% in 23 minutes, for a loss of $2 billion in market value. Dow quickly issued a statement saying that they had no employee by that name—that he was an impostor, not affiliated with Dow, and that his claims were a hoax. The BBC later broadcast a correction and an apology.[86]
    Jude Finisterra was actually Andy Bichlbaum, a member of the activist prankster group The Yes Men. In 2002, The Yes Men issued a fake press release explaining why Dow refused to take responsibility for the disaster and started up a website, at “DowEthics.com”, designed to look like the real Dow website, but with what they felt was a more accurate cast on the events.[87]

  76. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2012 at 9:49 am | #76

    Cartoon history of what went wrong:

  77. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2012 at 10:07 am | #77

    If Walmart agreed to pay enough to provide safe working conditions and decent wages, P Diddy and Sears, etc. wouldn’t have a choice. Without Walmart’s participation, the rest can’t afford to. Garment manufacturers didn’t move from the US to Mexico to China to Bangladesh only because minimum wage was lower. It isn’t that much lower than China’s. It’s the corruption and consequent lack of regulation enforcement that makes third world countries so “competitive” because following regulations and paying decent wages is more expensive than bribes. Only Walmart has the economic power to improve working conditions and wages in the third world. Only Americans have the political power to make Walmart do so or deny them access to our markets.

  78. Anonymous
    December 9, 2012 at 10:08 am | #78

    Question: Should the word “tea-tard” be hyphenated or not? “Tea-tard” vs. “teatard?”

    The community is buzzing about this controversy, JW. Whaddya think?

    Either way it has a nice ring to it…….

  79. December 9, 2012 at 10:13 am | #79

    Extraordinary. Thanks, PJ. The voice, BTW? Ed Asner.

  80. Plain Jane
    December 9, 2012 at 11:01 am | #80

    I thought it was very clever while being simple enough for a child to understand, Mitch. I wish they would put it to music and turn it into an “Economics Rock” video. The boomers generation had to memorize the preamble to the constitution to graduate from 8th grade. Their kids knew it by heart before they started school, and more about civics in general than their parents and grandparents, from “Constitution Rock.”

  81. Just Watchin
    December 9, 2012 at 2:12 pm | #81

    Anonymous :
    Question: Should the word “tea-tard” be hyphenated or not? “Tea-tard” vs. “teatard?”
    The community is buzzing about this controversy, JW. Whaddya think?
    Either way it has a nice ring to it…….

    Anon…..sorry you are confused. I meant the buzz was about BJ and Moviedad doing the horizontal mombo.

  82. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 5:58 am | #82

    Plain Jane :Cartoon history of what went wrong:

    Sponsored by the Calif. Teachers union…….a real class act. You should all be so proud. Before railing against Wallstreet, they should check to see where their own pension is invested. They should contact their pension manager and demand that they pull investments out of the evil corporations. WALK THE WALK for a change.
    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/12/05/california-teachers-union-video-shows-rich-man-urinating-on-poor-to-make-case/

  83. December 10, 2012 at 7:19 am | #83

    I watched the entire video, JW, did you? There is no such scene in this video. Perhaps faux news found an early edit or, more likely, they just made this up, like they made up the Bush and Romney victories.

    But the rich pissing on the poor is EXACTLY what’s been going on.

  84. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2012 at 7:59 am | #84

    What are you going to believe, Mitch? Fox News or your lying ears and eyes? Fox can’t refute the facts in this video, so they try to discredit it with lies. Unfortunately, about 47% of the people in this country (like our resident troll) are either too lazy or too stupid to do any research and Fox tells them what they want to hear. “There is no other way.” “Some day we’ll be rich.” “LOOK OVER THERE!”

  85. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2012 at 8:01 am | #85

    I mean, seriously! The troll didn’t even watch it but went looking to Fox to discredit it. How pathetically lazy and intellectually dishonest can he be?

  86. Just Wankin
    December 10, 2012 at 9:26 am | #86

    The problem with this country is those evil school teachers and their pensions. They think that because they spent the better portion of their lives teaching rooms full of our children on shoe-string budgets and low salaries that they now deserve a small pension (that they paid into) so they can live at a low to middle income level. If they want a retirement, make them work in garment factories or some other useful (and exploitative) area of work.

  87. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 9:33 am | #87

    The scene was in it originally. It was the backlash of people with even a little class that got it removed, unlike those that assign a dollar value on a human life. I knew it wasn’t in this version. I just to wanted to see the reaction. Like I’ve always said, I just come here because you morons crack me up !!

  88. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 9:34 am | #88

    I think Just Wankin is starting to get it. He may not be as dumb as he looks!

  89. Anonymous
    December 10, 2012 at 9:50 am | #89

    I say spark up a phatty and let the Florida tea-tard make a fool of himself. Let the Republican party self-destruct. It’s better than basketball.

  90. Just Wankin
    December 10, 2012 at 9:51 am | #90

    I knew I was being an idiot. I just wanted to see the reaction. Like I’ve always said, I just “come” here…

  91. Just Askin
    December 10, 2012 at 9:55 am | #91

    Just Watchin, given how easy it is to remove a tick like you from a wordpress blog, isn’t it evident that the owners of this blog find your presence here to be beneficial to the Democratic Party?

    This is a Democrat blog you know. Have you figgered it out?

    Does this worry you at all, or should we add narcissism to your list of personality quirks?

  92. Just Bein Helpful
    December 10, 2012 at 10:11 am | #92

    narcissism

    nar·cis·sism
    [nahr-suh-siz-em]

    noun
    1.
    inordinate fascination with oneself; excessive self-love; vanity. Synonyms: self-centeredness, smugness, egocentrism.

    2.
    Psychoanalysis . erotic gratification derived from admiration of one’s own physical or mental attributes, being a normal condition at the infantile level of personality development.

  93. Just Bein Truthful
    December 10, 2012 at 10:14 am | #93

    3.
    Politics. a tea-tard wanker

  94. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2012 at 10:16 am | #94

    He is a convenient and stereotypical “contard” pinata, JA, and a good reminder of why we work so hard to keep such imbeciles out of office.

  95. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 10:20 am | #95

    Just Askin :Just Watchin, given how easy it is to remove a tick like you from a wordpress blog, isn’t it evident that the owners of this blog find your presence here to be beneficial to the Democratic Party?
    This is a Democrat blog you know. Have you figgered it out?
    Does this worry you at all, or should we add narcissism to your list of personality quirks?

    Does it worry me? LMFAO!! If you go on the DNC website, I’m guessing it doesn’t announce that Just Watchin is a threat and represents all Conservatives. Have you seen any signs in the store windows of Humboldt to watch out for that evil JW? You can practically count on one hand (two, if you include BJ’s alias names) the number of people that visit this blog. But I do have a benefit: If it weren’t for me and a few other members of the opposition, this would just be a back slappin meeting of like minded members of the mutual admiration society of humboldt county, and that would get old in a hurry.

  96. Just Advocatin Cleanliness
    December 10, 2012 at 10:26 am | #96

    How to Clean a Sticky Computer Keyboard

    Not everything that falls in the cracks of your computer keyboard can be removed with a gas duster or vigorous shaking. The oils from your fingers can get on everything you touch, including your keys. Splatters of sugary drinks or other sticky liquids can also fall on the surface as well as in the cracks between keys. As you use the keys, this oily and sticky gunk spreads to other parts of the keyboard, capturing and trapping the dirt and germs from your fingers along the way.

    http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/home/germier-than-your-toilet-clean-your-keyboard-now2.htm

  97. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 11:22 am | #97

    Just Advocatin Cleanliness :How to Clean a Sticky Computer Keyboard
    Not everything that falls in the cracks of your computer keyboard can be removed with a gas duster or vigorous shaking. The oils from your fingers can get on everything you touch, including your keys. Splatters of sugary drinks or other sticky liquids can also fall on the surface as well as in the cracks between keys. As you use the keys, this oily and sticky gunk spreads to other parts of the keyboard, capturing and trapping the dirt and germs from your fingers along the way.
    http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/home/germier-than-your-toilet-clean-your-keyboard-now2.htm

    Hey Mitch…….why not give JAC his own thread like you did for me? It gave me a loyal following and made me famous, in a humboldt kinda way.

  98. Anonymous
    December 10, 2012 at 11:39 am | #98

    Hey can we get back to our normal self-congratulatory mutual admirin backslappin that we Liberals are used to around here?

    First order of business, let’s form up our traditional Humboldt circular backslappin squad.

  99. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 11:46 am | #99

    Another loyal fan in agreement!! Thanks Anonymous.

  100. tra
    December 10, 2012 at 11:51 am | #100

    “Another loyal fan in agreement!! Thanks Anonymous.”

    Sounds like you’ve got a bit a “circular backslappin squad” going there yourself.

  101. Anonymous
    December 10, 2012 at 12:08 pm | #101

    Now we know that irony is beyond your ken, as well, JW..

    Has anyone ever told you that you make a wonderful dinner companion?

    No?

  102. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 12:50 pm | #102

    Anonymous :Now we know that irony is beyond your ken, as well, JW..
    Has anyone ever told you that you make a wonderful dinner companion?
    No?

    Actually Anon, by definition, what you posted was not irony. What I posted, however, was definitely sarcasm. You should have paid more attention in school, and played less pocket pool.

  103. Plain Jane
    December 10, 2012 at 12:51 pm | #103

    And they are probably all him, Tra.

  104. Just Watchin
    December 10, 2012 at 1:12 pm | #104

    Plain Jane :
    And they are probably all him, Tra.

    WOW….I’m impressed. You got meaning of Tra’s ” circular” reference. But did Moviedad have to help you?

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