Wednesday, October 18, 2006

A Nobel Prize for Wal-Mart

I cross posted this in The Writing on the Wal this morning.

Robert has already commented on John Tierney's editorial "Shopping For A Nobel" in yesterdays NYT in this post. Moron? Probably. He does admit he is a libertarian. Personally, I think he is really into receiving hate mail. Afterall, he does hold the NYT record for hate mail.

As a scientist, many people have been asking me what I think about Tierney's column. Tierney asks "Has any organization in the world lifted more people out of poverty than Wal-Mart?" I have no idea, but it's worth an experiment.

Tierney quotes Michael Strong :

The best way for third world villagers to tap "the vast pipeline of wealth from the developed world," he argued in a recent article, is to sell their products to the world's largest retailer, Wal-Mart.

Tierney also cites Strong as saying "..that villagers can lift themselves out of poverty much faster by getting a job in a factory." Strong certainly knows far more about this issue than I do.

So, let's challenge Wal-Mart to build supercenters in two places; Khayelitsha, Cape Town's largest township and Kibera slum in Kenya. Let's actually see what effects Wal-Mart supercenters have in those slums.

Then we'll talk about a Nobel Prize.

No comments: