This morning’s CURRENT -TV documentary: ‘Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price’, was truly an eye opener. It’s also important as it connects the dots showing that the Reeps’ biggest, most oft repeated gripes – like about people on public assistance – are based on a company that uses public assistance (or tells its employees to do it) so it doesn’t have to pay benefits or a living wage. Hence, it’s totally hypocritical for Romney, Ryan or any of the Reep star structure and wonk brigade to whine about “Obama putting so many people on food stamps” when Wal-Mart is telling its employees this is how they need to supplement their (low) income and absence of any benefits. And meanwhile – sign up for SCHIP and Medicaid for their health care.
As the documentary notes and indicated in large print: ‘Wal-Mart costs taxpayers $1,557,000, 000 a year! That is in the total cost of publicly funded benefits its employees are forced to rely on because they can’t depend on their cheap ass company to pay the freight.
It was particularly educational to see the interview with Stan Fortune, Wal-Mart ‘District Loss Prevention Manager’ who once asked the head honcho: ‘Who’s going to take care of our associates and their health care needs?”
Fortune said: “He said, ‘Let the state do it.’
Fortune in another segment admits:
“I had a list of all the government agencies and all the different places that people could go, whether to get money for their utility bills, or apply for food stamps, or apply for WIC or for Medicaid.”
Meanwhile Wal-Mart employee Phenix Montgomery, also interviewed, said: “The Personnel Manager told me personally there’s assistance out there for people and they should be able to go use it. That’s YOUR taxpayer’s dollars”
In the wake of that, Montgomery added:
“So your dignity is not there. Your pride is not there. You go to work knowing you’re really not making enough money to make ends meet, but yet you gotta go with a smile on your face and fake it. You know that’s pretty bad.”
As one social service person put it: “Why is it that a corporation that in 2003 had a profit of $240 billion will not provide a livable wage or affordable health care.”
Why indeed? Because they are the embodiment of the Repukes’ political wet dream: A ‘job creator’ that pays peon wages, and tells its workers to seek public social services – which the Repukes can then blame on the “liberals and Democrats” for creating “so many in dependency”.
Fortune adds: “There’s no where around that a company makes this much money and still turns around and makes their employees go to the state for aid”.
Other state -by -state stats of the burden of dependency listed in the program:
Alabama: 3,864 children of Wal-Mart employees are enrolled in Medicaid.
Arizona: 2,700 Wal-Mart workers on Medicaid
Arkansas: 3,971 workers on public assistance
Connecticut: 824 Wal-Mart workers have children enrolled in a state health care program
Florida: 12,300 Wal-Mart workers and their dependents are enrolled on Medicaid. (Note: this was before Gov. Rick Scott sliced the cutoff threshold to qualify for Medicaid)
Georgia: 10, 261 children of Wal-Mart employees enrolled in ‘PeachCare for Kids’
Massachusetts: 4,172 Wal-Mart workers and dependents on State Health Care.
Tennessee: 9, 617 Wal-Mart workers on Tenn Care
Texas: 4, 363 children of Wal-Mart employees on S-CHIP
Wisconsin: 1,252 Wal-Mart employees and dependents on ‘BadgerCare’
These stats are disgusting and the consequences deplorable and catastrophic for our nation. In deed, I didn't even deal with all the trasngressions which include having associates "work off the clock" to pad bottom lines. It shows a company prepared to hoard profits, but at its employees’ expense and the national deficit. Repukes need to think carefully about that before they next scream, piss and moan about “exploding deficits”. If they support a company like Wal-Mart they have absolutely NO moral leg to stand on.
On this labor day, Americans – especially American workers- need to connect the dots between the depth of dependency on government assistance in the country (as forever whined about by the GOP and their coat tail Tea baggers) and a low morals, low wage profiteer corporation quite content to dispatch its “benefits” off the government’s back.
Next time people think of shopping at Wal-Mart they need to remember that. Next time a community howls in protest at the entry of a new Wal-Mart, the usual 'NIMBY' critics need to understand why, and that it’s not just being ‘mean’, ‘petty’ or that the protestors absolutely want no new businesses in their area. It’s because the protestors know what awaits and how dependency on their state and region is forecast to go up –because of the cheap skates at Wal-Mart.