Home > Uncategorized > Meet Some Folks Who Supply Wal-mart

Meet Some Folks Who Supply Wal-mart

Here are some folks in Louisiana who work for a supplier to Wal-mart.  Say howdy!

Wal-mart, you’ll be happy to know, launched an investigation just as soon as they heard about this.  Problem is, they seem to have finished their investigation without talking to any workers.

  1. Mitch
    June 23, 2012 at 8:32 pm
  2. Anonymous
    June 23, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    After walking through the Wal-mart, I fail to understand why I wouldn’t want to continue shopping at WinCo and Target for better selection and lower prices.

  3. Dan
    June 23, 2012 at 9:04 pm

    I would love to see the local Walmart employees
    vote to organize.
    50% plus one, that is all it takes.

  4. Anonymous
    June 23, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    And then there is Martori Farms, a Walmart produce supplier, which uses prison labor.

    “One of those businesses that turned to prison labor was Wal-Mart’s vendor, Martori Farms. According to a disturbing story published June 24th by Truth-Out.org, Martori Farms “pays its imprisoned laborers two dollars per hour, not including the travel time to and from the farm.” Women from the Arizona state prison complex at Perryville Unit are assigned to work at Martori Farms.” Arizona law requires that all able bodied inmates work.”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/al-norman/i-aint-gonna-work-on-mart_b_886596.html

  5. High Finance
    June 23, 2012 at 10:35 pm

    Dan accidentally let the cat out of the bag.

    This isn’t about Wal Mart’s business practices, other businesses do the same thing. This is all about the fact that Wal Mart has fought unionization and has won. This is all about Wal Mart & its political contributions to conservative candidates.

    All else is bull.

  6. June 23, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    HiFi would like to like to tie up his “all else is bull” argument in a neat little bow, but Wal-Mart is so full of poop it is squeezing out the sides.

  7. Anonymous
    June 23, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    “This is all about Wal Mart & its political contributions to conservative candidates.”

    Thanks for the reminder. I will add that to the growing list of reasons not to shop there.

  8. Anonymous
    June 23, 2012 at 11:10 pm

    “This is all about the fact that Wal Mart has fought unionization”

    Thanks again, I will add that one to the list, too!

  9. Anonymous
    June 23, 2012 at 11:28 pm

    As HiFi pointed out, Wal-Mart’s stance on unions is reason enough to not support the company.

  10. Just Watchin
    June 24, 2012 at 6:15 am

    Interesting that not one of the workers interviewed complained about low wages.

  11. Dan
    June 24, 2012 at 6:43 am

    “Dan accidentally let the cat out of the bag.” HiFi
    Let me accidentally remind all grocery workers in this area
    that in California, a “right to organize” state Retail Clerks have
    another ace in the hole.
    50% plus 1 will be recognized by the Teamsters, the drivers will not cross a Retail Clerks picket line.

  12. Bolithio
    June 24, 2012 at 6:46 am

    HI-FI seriously, after watching that clip, you are ok with people being treated that way?

  13. Percy
    June 24, 2012 at 6:55 am

    Yeah, they didn’t complain about their health and retirement benefits either JW. GFY.

  14. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 6:58 am

    Bolithio,

    Seriously, how could you have any doubt?

  15. High Finance
    June 24, 2012 at 6:59 am

    Bolithio, seriously is that an intelligent question ?

    CJ’s Seafood should fire that boss and the company should be fined. But you people are using that pisser of a company to attack Wal Mart with ? Attacking Wal Mart where they do something wrong themselves is legitimate but attacking them for their suppliers is cheap.

  16. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 7:41 am

    As always, HiFi the apologist ignores the big picture.

    Do you think behavior like that of CJ’s Seafoods is not related to Wal-mart’s policies. Here’s an article from 2003, from the noted commie magazine “Fast Company.” http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/77/walmart.html

    The point is, Wal-mart drives prices down by forcing patterns of behavior on those who supply it. The threat is real — if you can’t compete with slave labor in China, Wal-mart will just get the supplier that uses slave labor. If you’re feeding your slaves better than the next country, you’d better be prepared to become last year’s capitalist haven and this year’s discard.

    One of the prices a company pays to support such policies is occasional bad publicity. When the company is huge, it can offset such publicity with whole departments dedicated to greenwashing and finding Potemkin suppliers to toss HiFi’s way.

    For a small local business, it’s often economically worthwhile (not just the right thing) to treat your workers well. Your reputation is spread by local word of mouth, and your workers are your neighbors and your shoppers. People you know, like, and spend time with will notice and respond to you in ways that reflect what you’ve done.

    For huge multinationals, unfortunately, it’s often most economical to treat workers like shit. You build your reputation by buying the opportunity to use the public’s airwaves to advertise, then you hire producers and actors to lie for you. This replaces word of mouth. You outsource to the extent possible, and when one of your suppliers gets caught, you just move to the next. And your workers generally have very little political or organizing power.

  17. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 7:49 am

    But Walmart didn’t fire that company or Sartori Farms which forces prisoners to work in 100+ heat without water or sunscreen. This is part of the “high cost of low prices” and Walmart is complicit at every step. Does anyone think foreign companies making Walmart junk treat their employees any better?

  18. Just Watchin
    June 24, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Percy……what does GFY stand for?

  19. Dan
    June 24, 2012 at 8:56 am

    HiFi and the Catholic Church have new
    ‘bottom lines’ to consider. If we are to pander to billionaires
    someone has to pay, may as well be the working poor.

    http://www.minnpost.com/politics-policy/2012/06/sunday-rally-protest-archbishop%E2%80%99s-decision-disband-catholic-spirit-union

    “In what appears to be one of those “Do what I say, not what I do” moves, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is giving the boot to a union that has been negotiating contracts with the church for nearly half a century.”
    ————————

    “Economic fairness can only be constructed based on a well-organized working class willing to act in its own (our) interests and willing to stand up for itself.” St. Paul Labor

  20. SmokeMonster
    June 24, 2012 at 9:15 am

    How many of the anti wal mart crowd shop at WINCO and type on foxcon made Apple products???

    Numerous Wincos have been picketed for years for not being union,never here in eureka did anyone take the time to make a sign,so I doubt you’ll ever get your “50+1”
    As far as apple goes any liberal using any of their products needs to do some serious thinking about hypocrisy. Like Steve Jobs told President Obama “those jobs are never coming back to America” when asked what it would take for Apple to bring some manufacturing jobs back to the US,seeing as how much $ apple has.

    Then again ask Steve Jobs if wealth buys health,oh wait you can’t ask him that,hmmm.

  21. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 9:25 am

    Maybe the union supports birth control.

  22. June 24, 2012 at 9:53 am

    This YouTube video on sweatshops last a bit over five minutes:

    Hat tip to Radley Balko at The Agitator blog for the link. http://www.theagitator.com

  23. June 24, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Hmmm…didn’t mean to embed that video. It just happened. Sorry.

  24. Joel Mielke
    June 24, 2012 at 9:57 am

    “CJ’s Seafood should fire that boss and the company should be fined.”
    Fired for what, HiFi, being seen doing business-as-usual? This is how Walmart keeps a nation of mindless consumers (like the second commenter, above) content with “selection” and “savings.”

  25. Joel Mielke
    June 24, 2012 at 9:59 am

    And, perhaps if Fred had just a dash of ambition, he could get work in a sweatshop somewhere.

  26. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 10:01 am

    So now that Bass is a Democrat and we’ve heard about how Brady is a “lifelong Democrat”, we should expect these Democrats to lead a movement against the anit-Union WalMart.
    HiFi has clearly stated WalMart’s position on this issue and Democrats are clearly pro-labor. I’d like to see Bass, Brady, and Marks present their anit-WalMart platform at the next Democrat central Committee meeting.

    Unless of course these “new” Democrats aren’t pro-Union and are instead for low taxes, property rights, and the rights of business owners (but of course they’re not Republicans).

  27. firesidechet
    June 24, 2012 at 10:04 am

    sheesh – just don’t shop there already.

  28. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 10:28 am

    Why do you object to people discussing the consequences of our choices, Fireside? The ability to foresee consequences and modify our behavior accordingly is what makes humans special. Walmart’s predation on our local community will have negative side effects for everyone, not just those who shop there because they can’t see or don’t care about the “big picture.”

  29. June 24, 2012 at 11:03 am

    Great article, tra . These are people, human beings, good working people . My heart goes out to them .

  30. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 11:30 am

    As usual Mitch & the other lefties fail to understand how the private sector works.

    First, we are hearing only one side of the story. That side is the union & some disgruntled workers trying to drive public opinion to help them in a better contract. Are their claims real ? Perhaps. But Unions have been known to lie or at least exaggerate during their campaigns.

    But lets assume their stories are 100% true for now. The owners of CJ’s are inhumane to their workers in order to maximise profits. Does any thinking person think that those kind of people would pass on those profits if WalMart gave them an extra 25 cents per pound ? Of course not.

    If you count small regional suppliers like CJ’s, WalMart probably has thousands of suppliers of different items around the country. They can’t be held responsible for all of them anymore than Mitch can be held responsible because that shirt he bought last week at Sears was made in China with prison labor.

  31. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 11:33 am

    10,01am makes the false argument that in order to be “pro-labor” you have to be pro union.

  32. Festered
    June 24, 2012 at 11:40 am

    Bosses that yell,insult and mistreat?I’ve been dealing with that for the past 17 years.I’ve been bent on becoming financially independent for the past 10 yrs.

  33. Dan
    June 24, 2012 at 11:44 am

    10,01am makes the false argument that in order to be “pro-labor” you have to be pro union.

    Me too.
    I take it a step further, to be a Democrat or
    an environmentalist
    is to be pro-union.
    Otherwise the non-union Democrat or environmentalist,
    knows not from whence he sprang.

  34. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Walmart, being by far the largest customer of wholesale products in the world, drives the train of mistreatment and low wages of the workers who produce the merchandise we buy from all our retail outlets. Equating buying a shirt made in a sweatshop to corporate policies which push labor to the lowest wage / regulations / environmental protection regions of the world is intellectually dishonest.

  35. 2 cents
    June 24, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    I bet Fred didn’t mean to post that…if you follow up on ‘Learn Liberty. com’ you will discover its parent organization is the ‘Institute of Humane Studies’ (both sound great, right?) and that it is a KOCH bro.s thinky-tank type thing….SURPRISE!
    If you ask me, the long term goal of NAFTA (or maybe it’s ‘unintended’ consequence LOL) was to lower wages in the U.S. (and the rest of the ‘developed world’) until worldwide wage parity and working conditions might be reached. Very good for Daddy Warbucks, very, very bad for the U.S. worker and ultimately the whole world. The clip argues better wages are available in the sweatshops……Wages aren’t everything! If you’re losing your culture, language and your children are now born with birth defects and you have cancer to boot, what are wages worth?.
    The idiot assertion that the sweat shop jobs sought by 3rd worlders as preferable to their other CURRENT choices, purposefully fails to acknowledge the reason they make the choice to work in said sweatshops is the end result of colonialism and the destruction of their cultures and lands. Somali pirates for example. Why have ‘they’ turned pirate? Because ‘we’ with our fleets of factory ships (with their often prisoner crews) over fish the world’s oceans and in Somalia’s case ‘we’ dumped a bunch of nuclear waste on them too.
    And Winco may not be ‘union’ but it is WORKER OWNED.
    This can really be a depressing blog sometimes – I’m glad I don’t believe that Hi-fly and his ilk are truly representative of Eureka or the American people as a whole. Just lame loudmouths.

  36. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 12:24 pm

    Anonymous 11:30,

    So, this is only one side of the story?

    You know, you’re absolutely right.

    I wonder if Wal-mart has any way of telling its side? I get tired of hearing only one side, too. I hope Wal-mart can find some way of letting us know its side, and I hope workers can find some way of letting us know their side.

    Maybe Wal-mart can hold a bake sale to fund a few flyers, or something like that.

  37. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    Oh, but Anonymous 11:30. You know how Wal-mart can’t be held responsible for all of its thousands of suppliers? Why not read the Fast Company article I linked to in an earlier comment? They seem to think Wal-mart is able to manage the supply chain. Beats me how, but maybe those financial journalists have figured it out, ya know? Something about volume, I think, but I don’t know anything about the private sector.

  38. Bless your heart
    June 24, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    “I bet Fred didn’t mean to post that…” That’s being awfully kind to Fred.

  39. June 24, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    I bet Fred didn’t mean to post that….

    Sure I did. He just points out something I’ve written elsewhere: You’re not doing those sweatshop workers any favors by not buying the things they manufacture.

    Naturally, you try to attack the messenger, going so far as to find the supposed funding for the source of the message. You can’t argue with what the guy in the video says so you look elsewhere to attack. Can’t attack the message? Go after the messenger.

  40. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    Fred is well meaning but congenitally stupid.

  41. June 24, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    Once again the personal attacks start when I’ve made a point!

  42. 2 cents
    June 24, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    Well, I did not make a personal attack, I used your post as an example of corporate driven propaganda.
    There is a petition at: guestworkeralliance.org supporting the workers from ‘Fred’s’ You Tube – sign it!

  43. What Now
    June 24, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    2 cents posted the following June 24, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    “If you ask me, the long term goal of NAFTA (or maybe it’s ‘unintended’ consequence LOL) was to lower wages in the U.S. (and the rest of the ‘developed world’)”

    Fo those not squandering their braincells on bread and circuses, this was PRECISELY the goal of NAFTA, WTO and other global corporate schemes.
    None of it was done in the shadows but quite openly.Review Jimmy Carter’s inaugural speech from 1977, it’s addressed directly.
    Many publicly issued documents by the Tri-Lateral Commission address this intent as well.
    Much of the sociopathic philosphy driving this engine was inspired by Thomas J. Watson of IBM.His intent with The International Chamber of Commerce was to get nations to render-up their resources for exploitation by transnational business and banking interests so that “war would not be mecessary to achieve that same end.”
    Both wings of the Wall Street party dominating U.S. politics are culpable in this dystopian scheme.

  44. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    The personal attacks are because your “points” are idiotic. It’s like you either don’t read or can’t understand anything but what you post. Engaging you in debate is a futile, circular logic game, like we are speaking different languages. In short, your extreme political views are due to your idiocy because you can’t grasp anything which doesn’t fit your free market myths.

  45. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    Fred,

    I’m uncertain as to the point you think your video clip is making. Is it that there are people in the world in such dire straits that they’re OK with being exploited? I think we all know that, at least I do. It used to happen regularly in America — look up Triangle Shirtwaist. Thing is, we ended up with unions that made such exploitation harder.

    So the elites came up with NAFTA and free trade, to enable them to sell the products of their exploitation of foreign, union-free workers at Walmart.

    That doesn’t make exploitation good. It just means that capitalism will do whatever it is legally allowed to do to find new folks to exploit.

    The appropriate response to sweatshop conditions is not to proudly exclaim that the workers are better off in the sweatshops than they’d be with no jobs at all. The appropriate response is to demand better working conditions for the people providing our products, recognizing that by patronizing a company that doubles its workers pay and charges a few cents more, we are benefiting exploited workers by standing with them for higher wages.

    It costs us little and gains the workers much. It’s the opposite of the Walmart ethic, and it’s called fair trade.

    You can, perhaps, understand this for yourself if you imagine that one of the hypothetical workers your youtube actor was talking about was your mother. Would you rather Americans happily buy the results of her sweatshop labor, or do you think it would be worthwhile to pay an extra 1% in order to buy the same goods, but with her being paid twice what the sweatshops pay, with her working conditions closer to those we take for granted in the United States?

    If your answer is that you’d rather not risk her job, I completely understand. But see it for what it is — your mother is being exploited and you feel powerless to prevent it. Don’t try to sell it to yourself as the glories of global capitalism’s invisible hand.

  46. June 24, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    I’m uncertain as to the point you think your video clip is making..

    Ok. Let’s try this again: The bottom line is that if you stop buying this “cheap, chinese stuff” (whether from Shafer’s, Pierson’s or Walmart), you’re not helping these sweatshop people you feign so much concern about. They have good jobs for their situation and they’re much better off working those jobs rather than doing stoop labor in the fields, or having no job at all.

    Part of the problem here is that none of you are really concerned about people working in sweatshops. You’re just using that as an angle of attack toward business- Walmart in particular. Thus, you don’t see the relevance in pointing out businesses that sell that sweatshop stuff are helping the sweatshop workers, at least sto some extent, not harming them.

    I understand the tactic of throwing every argument you can against some thing or person you don’t like. Everybody does that. Screaming about what Walmart sells makes no sense, especially since most stores sell the same stuff.

    Scream about NAFTA all you want, but that’s allowed people overseas to improve their standard of living, despite whatever wrongs you attribute to it.

  47. June 24, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Would you rather Americans happily buy the results of her sweatshop labor, or do you think it would be worthwhile to pay an extra 1% in order to buy the same goods, but with her being paid twice what the sweatshops pay,….

    I think it’s pretty balsy of you to be telling foreign workers that they’re being exploited and what they should accept in pay or working conditions. The thing is, you can come up with all sorts of idealistic scenarios about how we can let them earn more. I don’t see that happening. We already have tariffs to some extent on most imported goods. Those tariffs aren’t sent overseas to sweatshop workers.

  48. Mitch
    June 24, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    “I don’t see that happening.”

    Clearly.

    Just as a reminder, the post itself is dealing with workers who, exploited by an American operation, have sought to organize themselves. Nobody in Humboldt, to my knowledge, is telling these Louisiana “guest workers” what to do.

    The ballsy thing, in my opinion, is trying to convince people that exploitation we might not tolerate at home is just fine overseas.

  49. Joel Mielke
    June 24, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    “Part of the problem here is that none of you are really concerned about people working in sweatshops.”
    It’s hard for Fred to imagine anything that he is incapable of.

  50. 2 cents
    June 24, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    FM: “Scream about NAFTA all you want, but that’s allowed people overseas to improve their standard of living, despite whatever wrongs you attribute to it”.
    The wrongs we attribute to it, include, but are (way) not limited to THE DEMISE OF THE MIDDLE CLASS IN AMERICA!
    Who here supports that? Huh? Again, I can’t hear you…..

  51. June 24, 2012 at 7:49 pm

    The wrongs we attribute to it, include, but are (way) not limited to THE DEMISE OF THE MIDDLE CLASS IN AMERICA!.

    Do you want to bring back America’s middle class at the expense of the people who manufacture stuff overseas? Thought so. I’m not sure where I stand on NAFTA, but thanks for making my point that sweat shop workers overseas really isn’t the concern here.

    After all, if we start making all our products here, who are those sweatshop workers going to sell stuff to?

  52. Anonymous
    June 24, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Two dollars an hour for prison workers seems fair when you consider that they not only get free room, board, and medical care, plus they are supposed to be “paying a debt to society”. 2 bucks seems fair to me!

  53. tra
    June 24, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    GoJoe says:
    June 24, 2012 at 11:03 am
    “Great article, tra . These are people, human beings, good working people . My heart goes out to them .”

    I didn’t post the article. Check at the bottom of the article on the front page of the Herald — it says “posted by Mitch.” \

    I can’t post articles directly to the Herald, I think only Heraldo (whoever he/she/they are), Mitch, and Eric Kirk have that ability.

    A couple of times over the years Heraldo has featured one of my comments as a “guest post,” and once I emailed him(?) my comments on a KINS interview of Rob Arkely Jr., and Heraldo included those in his post on the subject. But other than that, I just post comments here in the comment threads like everyone else.

    At any rate I agree with your comment — the folks in the video seem like good, hardworking, salt-of-the-earth people, who are just asking to be treated with respect.

  54. Chain Gang
    June 24, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    Anonymous 8:28 is probably always looking at the bright side.

  55. 2 cents
    June 24, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    I said “include, but are (way) not limited to THE DEMISE OF THE MIDDLE CLASS IN AMERICA!”. “WAY”! I strangely thought you might identify. There are many other reasons. Environmental first, I suppose. It’s just too tired, arguing with you.

  56. unanonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 6:25 am

    the co-op uses cash registers made in china by slave labor. is this relevant?

  57. Ponder z
    June 25, 2012 at 6:40 am

    the clip shows no abuse. The abuse is accuse only. In the clip we see migrant workers working. So the point is that unions are forcing their way into all work places. My employer pays me fairly and treats me well. I work for a national company, you have all heard of. Some employers are not as good as mine. Its to bad we see unions butting into business, socialism is the next step.

  58. High Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 7:07 am

    There were other reasons to approve NAFTA that you guys haven’t thought of or at least posted.

    By improving the economy of Mexico there would be fewer illegal immigrants from there to the US and by lowering the trade barriers it would allow US products easier access to a huge improving market.

    NAFTA is a win/win in the long run.

  59. Just Middle Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Yes, “win-win”. Chinese manufacturers who supply at the lowest price and Wal*Mart who pay the lowest possible wage so they can sell at the lowest possible price is a great example of “win-win”. Both companies win. Survival of the fittest! Get used to it Libtards!

  60. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 7:39 am

    What US products, HiFi? Most of “our” products are made in the third world by people who can barely survive on their incomes. What are we going to export that they can afford to buy?

  61. Just Middle Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 7:39 am

    I meant Mexico, Columbia, Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Chile, et al.

  62. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 9:00 am

    About prisoners working in 100° heat for $2.00, It’s PRISON Don’t do criminal stuff if you don’t want to go to prison and do prison-related stuff. Stop complaining about how hard prisoners have it.

  63. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Anonymous 9:00,

    Ever smoke pot?

  64. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 9:46 am

    9:00 would be singing a different tune if he, a supposedly innocent person, was sent to prison. Forcing people to do hard labor in inhumane conditions to create more profit for corporations should be unconstitutional.

  65. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 9:58 am

    I don’t know that GOJOE, in fact I’m 99.999999% sure they’re all different people due to their writing styles, their different, often-stated beliefs and political slant on issues, the GPU in particular but they have also supported different candidates in elections.

  66. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 10:28 am

    But mitch, there’s no conspiracy. The shoppers are just as much to blame. There’s no relationship between walmart and “free trade” with china…no conspiracy there either. No conspiracy that until this decade, every human rights organization was given public airtime on major media over gross human rights violations…that now receive no attention in the media. No conspiracy that the exact same media now applauds china, despite an actual increase in the toll of their government’s behavior. No conspiracy that every shool in this nation up and until the 90’s educted students on human rights violations in china. It would be mean spirited and emotional to tell CEO’s of walmart they are doing bad. We need to be nice and “compromise”. No conspiracy to see here…move along, go back to sleep. Too much stress is bad for people, don’t think about it…don’t be a negative nelly, be POSITIVE!!! Be HAPPY!!! like the walmart smile!

  67. Just Middle Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 10:57 am

    10:28 is correct, there is no conspiracy. There is a mutually agreed upon economic system. My family has owned a gas station on the North Coast for decades. We always charge as much as possible and we always pay as low of wages as possible, always! It’s the capitalist way, get over it Libtards! It’s legal. We got the wealth, we own the property, and now we own the government. Freedom of Commerce, our most cherished Amendment.

  68. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Anonymous 10:28,

    I don’t really care whether you think there’s a conspiracy.

    I’m not suggesting “positive thinking.” If that’s what you’re getting from my comments, I’m not explaining myself well. Actually, I think what must be faced is much, much harder than identifying and dismantling a conspiracy.

    The problem is built-in to our political system and to human nature. That is the explanation for why so many societies fall into the same corrupt patterns.

    The solution is not going to be quick, nor as easy as the typical conspiracy theorist probably imagines. And if we’re lucky enough to move towards a solution, even keeping any forward motion will require continuous work by a large group of people.

    Yes, the schmucks in charge must be called to account — I don’t mean to question that in the slightest, and I think there is a plentiful supply of schmucks in the highest echelons of business, government, and even the non-profit sector.

    I’m not trying to excuse or justify their behavior. I’m trying to point out that calling the current crop of jackasses to account won’t be nearly enough to prevent the next crop from being equally as bad or worse. Study some history.

    The way you get change that “sticks” is by changing a society’s behavior at the roots — changing what people consider acceptable, normal, sane behavior. Without that, you just get to install your own saviors, who will turn out to behave not-all-that-differently from the people they replace. Again, I can only urge you to study some history. Replacing the people in charge without changing the roots might mean some redistribution downwards (good!) for a few years, but the same problems we face now will reappear in new forms.

    When behaving like an ass loses its appeal and benefits, the people in charge will stop behaving like asses. Not before.

    I’m sorry if this sounds to you like a cop out. I firmly believe it’s not, but I can understand why you wouldn’t believe me.

  69. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 11:16 am

    “The way you get change that “sticks” is by changing a society’s behavior at the roots — changing what people consider acceptable, normal, sane behavior.”

    sure mitch…conspiracy has nothing to do with changing what people consider acceptable, normal, sane behavior.

    You are not trying to justify the conspiracy, of course, but you sure are demonstrating exactly what complacence is.

  70. High Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 11:21 am

    What you are all missing is that people in business are not in business to provide jobs, that is a byproduct. They are in business to make money.

    All businesses pay wages depending on the value of the work provided and the going rate in the market for those services. Workers freely exchange their time for the wage. If the work is low skilled and low risk you cannot expect to be well compensated.

    The market has determined that flipping burgers at McDonalds is minimum wage and cops, doctors and plumbers are higher valued and therefore better paid.

    This is true whether you are WalMart or the saintly Democrat party or EPIC. They also pay their
    employees the going rate.

  71. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 11:27 am

    “acceptable, normal, sane behavior”

    http://tinyurl.com/7b5uyfp
    http://tinyurl.com/7jcmscq

    Mitch, can you think of other acceptable, normal sane behavior that is anything but? Like how about our government spending trillions of dollars in “defense” spending instead of using that same money for transition between one acceptable, normal, sane mode of behavior to an even more acceptabe, normal and sane mode of behavior?

    I’m not saying you’re copping out…you’ve written enough to prove otherwise. I’m saying you’re typically complacent. I see that it’s typical, too, that the older one gets, the less they are open to revolutionize their perspective, or even humor it. “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” etc. Humans are animals, you are an animal who is addicted to gasoline and electricity….and money. Is that YOUR fault?

  72. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 11:30 am

    “Workers freely exchange their time for the wage.”

    Corrected: “people have to eat”

  73. Jack Sherman
    June 25, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    The U.S. has illegally bombed 25 nations since WWII, nearly all are desperately poor that were moving toward land-reform to provide their people with the resources to feed themselves.

    Forcibly maintaining people’s poverty is an essential component to America’s “free-market” fallacy today.

    Imperial economies have never been “free” economies, a lie repeated ad-nausea.

    NAFTA, LAFTA, et al, succeed in getting nations to subvert their ability to protect jobs with reasonable Tariffs and environmental regulations, “voluntarily”. maintaining poverty without the usual bombings, assassinations, and military coups!

    History’s imperial economies are always unsustainable. When scarcity looms they turn their predation against their own citizens. The world’s poor lost their land-reform movements just as Americans are losing their access to education, housing, health care, social services, in effect, the fundamental resources that built a middle class and a nation of innovators.

  74. Just Middle Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    Hi Fi “…business are not in business to provide jobs, that is a byproduct. They are in business to make money.”

    Hi Fi is correct. We are in the business of making profit. My family’s Gas Station is not here to create jobs. Those minimum wage ingrates steal so much from us we have more cameras watching the employees than the customers. In a perfect world, we would have pay-at-the-pump and a bunch of secure vending machines selling our cigarettes, liquor, beer, Monster beverages, etc. Then we could eliminate the jobs we never really wanted to create and the theft from our ungrateful employees and customers.

  75. SmokeMonster
    June 25, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    2cents 12:08 states that “winco is not union but employee owned”

    You get that from the sign as you enter?

    The (voting) majority of shares are owned by a few top executives.

    They have a board of directors,most employees are not happy there(ask them,I know many) and communities in Arizona don’t want them just as many here don’t want wal mart.

    Just because a sign tells you a company is “employee owned” doesn’t convey the truth

  76. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    Anonymous 11:27,

    I said we have to CHANGE what is considered acceptable, normal, sane behavior. Your two photographs are examples of what needs to be changed. The examples are endless. But we disagree about how change works, and we definitely disagree about whether secret cabals are at work causing our problems. I think the problems are caused largely out in the open, and understood by many as “business as usual.” I don’t think there are conspiracies, I think there is a congress made up of crooks, and a supreme court made up of injustices. No secret about it.

    Don’t confuse calm language with complacency, and don’t confuse understanding a situation with accepting it or justifying it.

    Am I addicted to gas, electricity and money? I suppose so, as you are (no matter what you might think). Yes, we each share in the blame for the current situation, me likely more so than you.

    It’s true that as people get older we get more stuck in our ways and less willing to sacrifice our comfort. But it’s also true that we are able to see things, for better or worse, from a wider perspective.

    As I’ve aged, I’ve come to believe that no amount of exhortation to others is as effective as modeling behavior, and no amount of pushing someone else to do something is as effective as doing it yourself.

    Exhortation is not worthless, and I think there’s some value in shaming the people who are committing the worst atrocities, but what mostly needs to happen is, society-wide, we all need to change what we respect and what we disrespect; what we reward and what we penalize. Otherwise, the people who ought to be ashamed will just laugh at those who criticize them, thinking those people naive fools, and thinking that adding a zero to their net worth makes them winners.

    I’ve also come to believe that soft, imperfect but doable solutions are more likely to work than hard and jagged “perfect” ones.

    Even if you perceive yourself as a tiny part of a large whole that has problems beyond your ability to solve, the whole’s problems won’t be completely solved unless your tiny share is as well, and your tiny share is the only part that you have a reasonable degree of control over.

  77. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    I have to disagree mitch. You and I don’t sign clearcutting contracts or plot sprawl or shred BP documents about oil spills or bullshit about our political affiliation. Nor do we hire people to sugarcoat our activities and coerce the public one way or another about it.

    The government of the united states can fabricate over three trillion dollars in a decade and give it to a handfull of bank exectutives, instead of creating money to accomodate the transition we both agree has to happen.

  78. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    “As I’ve aged, I’ve come to believe that no amount of exhortation to others is as effective as modeling behavior, and no amount of pushing someone else to do something is as effective as doing it yourself.”

    That has nothing to do with conspiracy. You are probably deeply religious in a classical sense. It makes sense that you would see htings on a one on one level. How many billionairres or heads of state can you get within 100 feet of?

  79. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 4:11 pm

    You are probably deeply religious in a classical sense.

    Yes and no.

    I’m an atheist, but I do feel that much of the change that is needed will have to come from the same place as true religion — that is, an insistence on incorporating compassion, community, and an understanding of right and wrong into our everyday lives. so that we can live them without being as self-centered as comes naturally to us. So, if that’s what you mean by “religious in a classical sense,” OK. If you mean I’m hoping for The Lord’s reward, no.

    If you’re thinking “the poor guy’s been brainwashed by the preachers,” probably not.

  80. What Now
    June 25, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    “What you are all missing is that people in business are not in business to provide jobs, that is a byproduct. They are in business to make money.”

    Businesses are a byproduct of an affluent citizenry.
    Chicanery, smoke and mirrors, and accounting slight of hand wil serve as a poor stand in for such for a limited period.
    Then matters can become very ugly.

  81. 2 cents
    June 25, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    JMF says – “In a perfect world, we would have pay-at-the-pump and a bunch of secure vending machines selling our cigarettes, liquor, beer, Monster beverages, etc. “………….Yeah, that’s a perfect world alright. And we were talking about wal-mart and jobs! JMF seems to want no jobs at all, only owners and he’s not fond of customers either.
    I am definitely not finding here my definition of a perfect world

  82. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    “If you’re thinking “the poor guy’s been brainwashed by the preachers,” probably not.”

    Nah, I’m thinking you haven’t seen or experienced much corruption in action wth your own two eyes. From my experience, people who haven’t been abused by police have a hard time believing crooked cops exist. I see your description of what ISN’T corruption within power tripping police officers…misguided, self righteous, whatever…corrupt is what I call it. I’ve met players in all kinds of industry, from auto sales to oil stocks and timber, who are fully aware they are ripping people off, and they shake hands with fellows on up the ladder. They joke about it. When you step back and look at it, on up to trillions of mispent dollars, hundreds of millons of innocent people dead from war, disease, famine, starvation, everybody getting sick from stress and pollution…it all adds up to the same conspiracy everybody says.

    There’s a catchphrase that applies, I would like to it think isn’t racist because it was introduced to me so many years ago as refering to game cards, and I’m not racist…”To call a spade a spade”. Call it like you see it and tell it like it is…there are corrupt people who conspire to maintain the status quo. Empathy has nothing to do with cause and consequence.

  83. Just Middle Finger
    June 25, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    One thing that isn’t addressed is the influence of illegal laborers in this drama. The ones on camera are probably legal in one way or another. But having no recourse on employers tends to encourage importation of illegals, who then are unwilling to pursue remedies if they are mis-treated. Until there are real penalties for employers who hire illegals, then the abuse can continue in the shadows.

  84. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    re: 5:25, yep, and consider that just about all of walmart’s employees are illegal laboroers. That is, if you were to bring walmart’s manufacturing laborers into the united states, walmart would be guilty of human rights violation to the point of prison sentences. Lines in sand are all that separate walmart from being considered slave masters by our powers that be…except our powers that be are fully aware of this simple fact, and even set up the whole deal to begin with. Conspiracy in action.

  85. High Finance
    June 25, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    Just Middle Finger (aka Factless, aka Dumb 5th Grader, aka several other monikers with different avatars) brought up the issue of illegals and their exploitation by some employers.

    He actually made a good point. It does happen and it should be a crime. Wait, it already is. One Arizona tried to enforce and the Obama administration sued to stop. Tougher employer penalties for knowingly hiring illegals is what the Republicans are trying to push and the Democrats are trying to stop them.

  86. Dan
    June 25, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    “Tougher employer penalties for knowingly hiring illegals is what the Republicans are trying to push and the Democrats are trying to stop them.” HiFi

    Crack me up. The ranchers and ag folks that hire these crews are
    Republican (the base). The people Republicans abuse are the workers, “show me your papers” fascist crap.

  87. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    And Az wanted to put these people in state prisons and lease them out to the ag industry for $2 an hour!

  88. Just Middle Finger
    June 25, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    Enforcing any ‘illegal alien’ federal laws against employers stopped with Ronald Reagan. But, facts be damned, it must be Obama’s fault.

  89. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    Anonymous 5:16,

    I have a feeling we define conspiracy differently. I have no doubt that there are corrupt police, corrupt pols, corrupt preachers, and corrupt presidents. I just reserve the word conspiracy for groups meeting secretly to plot how to gain control of power or money with the aid of secret plans — and I don’t think such things exist.

    The closest I think America comes to that is when Karl Rove chats with Dubya.

    There’s simply no need for conspiracies — the top 0.01% can control everything AND stay within the law. As I’ve heard and agree, “the real crime is what’s legal.”

  90. tra
    June 25, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    GOJOE,

    I’m not deleting any comments. I have no way of doing so. And I have not contacted Mitch, or Heraldo, or anyone else, to ask them to delete your comments. And I only post under the nickname “tra.”

    Of course you can choose to disbelieve that if you want, but you’re just wrong. And you should know that those who have been reading this blog for a while are surely laughing at your theory that I’m Mitch and/or Heraldo.

    I do know who Mitch is (as far as I know, it’s not really a secret, as he’s shared his last name in the past, and I am well aware of who he is since I know of his involvement in several very worthwhile initiatives).

    I don’t know who is behind the Heraldo name, and I don’t really care. Whoever it is has his/her/their point of view, which I sometimes agree with and sometimes don’t. In both cases, I appreciate being able to see what other folks in the community are saying about local issues, as well as the opportunity to share my thoughts on issues that interest me.

    So, as far as identity-guessing goes, you’re just way off the mark. But don’t feel too bad, over at Eric Kirk’s blog (Sohum Parlance II) the most recent speculation is that I’m someone named Tom Grover, from Redway. That guess at least made sense to me when I got curious and Googled his name, I found that he and I had some similar views on a couple of issues. But, no, for the record, I’m not Tom Grover. I’ve also been (wrongly) accused in the past of being either Estelle Fennell or Charlie Custer, I don’t remember offhand whether that was here at the Herald, or over at Eric’s blog.

    I guess I should be flattered that anyone cares enough about what I write that they think they need to identify me and/or discredit me or whatever. But I just think it’s kind of stupid.

    Go back and read some of the threads about the GPU, or the threads about the Clendenen/Fennell race, or maybe the thread in which Heraldo put a picture of Julie Williams from the NorCal Association of Home Builders side by side with a picture of Muammar Gaddafi — and then see if you still think I’m Heraldo:

    https://humboldtherald.wordpress.com/2011/03/01/developers-stop-the-general-plan-update/

    Go back and read the recent thread about the tobacco tax hike initiative — and then see if you still think I’m Mitch:

    https://humboldtherald.wordpress.com/2012/05/25/yes-on-prop-29/

    Or you could continue making a fool of yourself with paranoid accusations that just make no sense. Your choice.

  91. Thorstein Veblen
    June 25, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    It ain’t a conspiracy. This is how the system is supposed to work.

  92. tra
    June 25, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    “I just reserve the word conspiracy for groups meeting secretly to plot how to gain control of power or money with the aid of secret plans — and I don’t think such things exist”

    Really? What about Enron? Iran-Contra? Numerous coup d’etats?

    I do agree with you that most of the wrongdoing is, if hidden at all, only “hidden in plain sight,” but there are certainly some notable exceptions.

  93. Anonymous
    June 25, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    The do meet in secret to plot. See Council for National Policy.

  94. Mitch
    June 25, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    tra,

    Enron: conspiracy. Iran-contra: conspiracy. I don’t think that’s what Anonymous is talking about. I think he has in mind something much broader.

  95. June 25, 2012 at 11:40 pm

    Tra, don’t feed the trolls. Sheesh.

  96. tra
    June 25, 2012 at 11:50 pm

    Awwww, but they’re so cute when they’re paranoid…

    Oh, O.K.

  97. Anonymous
    June 26, 2012 at 9:15 am

    “I just reserve the word conspiracy for groups meeting secretly to plot how to gain control of power or money with the aid of secret plans — and I don’t think such things exist”

    14 year olds work 10+ hour days in china for Walmart. (How much PYO you think they get?). Billionairre buddies of heads of state are running that show. The same people pretend to decry such practice in this country, because it would land them in prison. Actually, considering their vast wealth and position within the ring of political influence, there would be little repercussion and no jail time.

    …but nobody’s conspired anything, right? And as it continues right this very second, there is no conspiracy going on, right? Call it what it is, mitch.

  98. Anonymous
    June 26, 2012 at 9:26 am

    “Enron: conspiracy. Iran-contra: conspiracy. I don’t think that’s what Anonymous is talking about. I think he has in mind something much broader.”

    Yes…manufacturing, labor, waste…expoitation of the third world, etc. etc. etc. They’re getting away with it. Is it conspiracy to you only when it gets a name and attention as such on “the news”? Because iran contra and enron are done deals, however the larger chain of events in which those cases were integral continue to this day. Here and there, elements of it are exposed…BP got off scott free after polluting half the ocean. It is the “enron” conspiracy.

  99. Just Watchin
    June 26, 2012 at 9:42 am

    You’d think that Walmart was the only retailer in America that sold goods made in a foreign country, and the people buying these goods are evil. Do this…… check out where your computer, phone, i-pad or other “life necessities” were made. Now, look into the mirror and say hello to “evil”

  100. Anonymous
    June 26, 2012 at 9:48 am

    just watchin, that’s just stupid. First, no shit about foreign production…the BIG PICTURE…the real “conspiracy”. Second, that’s just stupid. By your dumbass reasoning, nobody’s doing anything wrong. Go back to sleep…everything’s fine…trust the people with the most money, they’ll take care of you. They always have. Everything’s great and getting better.

  101. Anonymous
    June 26, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Walmart as the largest wholesale buyer in the world forced offshoring. All the other retailers have little say in the matter. The can buy foreign manufactured products or close.

  102. Fact Checker
    June 26, 2012 at 10:20 am

    High Finance said: June 25, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    “Just Middle Finger (aka Factless, aka Dumb 5th Grader, aka several other monikers with different avatars) …”

    Wrong! I am not “Just Middle Finger”. Heraldo, call me on it if I am lying. Can’t get any facts right, eh, Hi Fi old boy?

  103. Just Watchin
    June 26, 2012 at 10:36 am

    Settle down Anonymous. Sounds like someone’s welfare check hasn’t made it yet this month.

  104. Amanda
    June 26, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    Complaint brought by pro-union forces. What a surprise.

  105. High Finance
    June 26, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Factless uses so many different names it does become confusing at times.

    You certainly aren’t being clever or entertaining by doing it so you must just be trying to make it appear your wacked out viewpoints has more support than it does.

  106. Fact Checker
    June 26, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    Yes Hi Liar, and you are WRONG! I am not Just Middle Finger. Can’t get yer facts right, eh old Boy?

  107. 2 cents
    June 26, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    3 days before the thread was totally lost to dickering. Not too bad, I guess…………

  108. Thorstein Veblen
    June 26, 2012 at 11:13 pm

    I am just middle finger!!!!!

    I am also Sparticus!!!

  109. Fact Checker
    June 27, 2012 at 7:48 am

    Wal-Mart starts construction of Chinatown store as protest looms

    Los Angeles Times‎ – 13 hours ago
    Retail giant Wal-Mart celebrated the start of construction on its controversial new store in Chinatown, days before a planned march that labor …
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/06/walmart-chinatown-los-angeles.html

  110. Fact Checker
    June 27, 2012 at 7:51 am

    “Wal-Mart cuts ties with public relations firm over impersonation
    The retail giant ends its ‘business relationship’ with Mercury Public Affairs, whose senior associate was found to have posed as a reporter at an event staged by Wal-Mart critics.”
    http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jun/25/local/la-me-0625-walmart-20120625

  111. Fact Checker
    June 27, 2012 at 7:53 am

    “Wal-Mart was bombarded by negative comments from shareholders and activists after the New York Times reported in April that management at Wal-Mart de Mexico, or Walmex, allegedly orchestrated bribes of $24 million to help it grow quickly last decade and that Wal-Mart’s top brass tried to cover it up. There is growing dissension among some shareholders who believe that current board members, including Chairman Robson ”
    http://www.stratfordbeaconherald.com/2012/06/27/walmart-may-lose-a-battle-but-they-never-lose-a-war

  112. Fact Checker
    June 27, 2012 at 7:54 am

    “For more than one hour Bella Vista residents poured out their hearts begging their city council members to take more time to consider traffic, safety and convenience issues regarding a proposed Walmart Neighborhood Market along U.S. 71 and Oldham Drive.

    But it seemed the council — at least five of the six aldermen — were anxious to put this volatile issue to bed, defeating a motion made by Alderman Jerry Snow to table any vote for 90 days to allow for a complete traffic impact study.”
    http://www.thecitywire.com/node/22548

  113. High Finance
    June 27, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    You really need to get a life Factless.

  114. Sgt. Joe Friday
    June 27, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    ‘Just the facts, ma’am’

  115. What Now
    June 27, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    Once again, Highly Flatulent shows his jealousy for individuals who have developed the non-reptilian past of thier brains.

  116. High Finance
    June 27, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Have the bars kicked you out already What Now or are you just a troll ?

  117. What Now
    June 28, 2012 at 12:28 am

    Why go to a bar? I don;t drink and I’d just be surrounded by your addicted friends and family.the suyrving ones that aren’t on ankle bracelets, anyway.

  118. 2 cents
    June 28, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Couldn’t you just argue at home? Please? The links are interesting actually (go ahead Walmart lovers….) and the only on topic comments since I noted this thread is petered out. Just shut up already. Obviously ‘if you can’t say something nice….’ does not apply here – how about ‘if you can’t say something relevant’? And trading insults is neither interesting nor relevant.
    Good morning – go DO something.

  119. SilverVigilante
    June 28, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    Walmart: A place where food stamps go to die……..or EBT cards.

  120. Eric Kirk
    July 13, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    Here’s a decent article on topic.

    http://dissentmagazine.org/online.php?id=614

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