Wednesday, June 21, 2006

No Quality of Life in SL!

This morning on TOT the community was notified, by a regular caller, that there is no quality of life in Saranac Lake, unlike in the past. Why is this? High crime rate? Poor educational system? Lack of clean air and water? No, it's none of those things.

It's because we don't have a Wal-Mart!

Almost everyone in the area agrees that Saranac Lake needs a large department store to replace the old Ames store. But to claim that SL lacks quality of life because we don't have a Wal-Mart is not only wrong, ignorant, illogical, and not well thought's stupid.

This is what it's come down to. The problem is no longer that we lack a large department store, the problem is that we lack a 121,000 sq ft Wal-Mart box in which to buy cheap junk.

Ever wonder why Ames went bankrupt? Could it possibly be because Wal-Mart put them out of business? Hundreds of grocery stores across the USA have gone out of business. Why? Wal-Mart. Tens of thousands of good, well paying manufacturing jobs have been moved overseas. Why, because US manufacturers are pressured to do so by Wal-Mart. But no need to worry. These good paying jobs with benefits are being replaced by jobs at Wal-Mart just so you and I can buy more and more unnecessary cheap crap.

Robert Reich, ex-Secretary of Labor says, consumers' addiction to low prices is accelerating a shift toward a two-tiered U.S. economy, with a shrinking middle class and a growing pool of low-wage workers. "Wal-Mart's prices may be lower," he said, "but that's small consolation to a lot of people who end up with less money to spend."

I am finally reading "The Wal-Mart Effect" by Charles Fishman. I'm very surprised more pro-Wal-Mart people haven't read the book because Fishman actually seems to admire what Wal-Mart has accomplished. The more worrisome aspects are the spreading effects of what and how Wal-Mart does business. Even the US Bureau of Standards cannot get a handle on the effects of Wal-Mart on our economy.

Fishman wanted to interview companies that supply Wal-Mart. He had lots of trouble finding one that would talk about their so called 'partnership' with Wal-Mart. He finally found a supplier that agreed to be interviewed. Next day the supplier said they changed their mind. They had called Wal-Mart to make sure it was okay. It wasn't. They couldn't afford to alienate Wal-Mart.

An economist wanted to do a study on the effects of Wal-Mart on surrounding businesses. They called Wal-Mart to get a list of stores and the dates on which they opened for business. Wal-Mart refused to give out the information.

(Rant to be con't)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is unfortunate, but most pro Wal-Mart don't believe any negative stuff about Wal-Mart. That's too bad, because it is all over. Think Wal-Mart is so great? Then perhaps you should read:

1) The Case Against Wal-Mart by Al Norman. You have to order his book through his web site ""

2) How Wal-Mart Is Destroying America And What You Can Do About It by Bill Quinn

3) The Wal-Mart Effect by Charles Fishman. You may think this book is flattering, but read it all. It is not. Fishman in the end doesn't paint a good picture either.

4) In Sam We Trust by Bob Ortega. UNFORTUNATELY, this book is out of print. But if you ever get it you will find it's terrific. Ortega gives you a history of Wal-Mart, and Kmart. Sam Walton and his empire get exposed in this excellent book.

There are also some great web sites.


Saranac Lake suffers because we DON'T HAVE A WAL-MART? I can't remember when I've heard anything so foolish. If this person wants a Wal-Mart that badly, WHY DON'T THEY DO THE SIMPLE THING AND MOVE TO WHERE THERE IS ONE? What exactly is keeping them here?
It is so unfortunate that pro Wal-mart folks don't believe negative stuff about Wal-Mart. But I have to ask myself "What box are you living in?"
Do your homework. Wal-Mart drains communities, treats their employees like crap, pays them poverty wages, squeezes their suppliers, imports abot 70% of what they sell from China, and even mistreats their customers on occasion.
Our quality of life is poor because we don't have a Wal-Mart? Oh please!!