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Walmart the second coming of the robber barons

UtahBill

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Long post with a lot of exaggerations, but I can agree with portions of it.
Our grocery shopping is done mostly at the commissary, next up is Costco, and then sale items at other grocery stores. The few things I can't get elsewhere at decent prices we but at Walmart. The prices for American made food are a LOT less, so the Albertson, Frys, Safeway, etc. stores have a serious markup. A bag of rice puffs is .86 vice $1.49, caramel candy is 1.44 vice 1.99, my favorite ham is about 10% less, Red Baron pizza about 20% less. I don't love Walmart, but I can see how they chew up and spit out the competition. The little town we used to live in up in Idaho was only 12 miles from a larger town with lots of stores and the small business owners slowly went under by charging a lot more than the stores only 12 miles away. How stupid can you be? You can only expect a certain amount of customer loyalty, and that is what kept them going as long as they did. My wife's folks were like that, loyal to their neighbors appliance store. They paid $550 for a stove that was only $460 at a bigger store, 12 miles away!
So the little stores can share the blame. If their prices are more realistic, the competition finds it more difficult to come to town.
 

Canuck

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greed begets more smarter greed tactics

there is however the price wars as you say ,if it's cheaper we benefit but
how much do we really benefit on certain items in the long haul
the pair of sneakers was a good example

we have to also consider lost jobs SS payments and decay of the mom and pop stores
I agree though that the cheaper place is where folks will
go
I just can't help but think how many armaments are we actually buying China
 

UtahBill

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It makes sense to help China become a producer nation. If a large part of their economy depends on foreign consumers, they will be less likely to start wars. Historically, tho, they haven't started wars as much as have had wars started on them.
If China would respect patent and copyright laws, it could even benefit us, but they have no reluctance at all when it comes to stealing intellectual property.
One thing they don't have, despite their geographic size, is enough arable land and decent weather for the production of food. Once they damn up enough rivers to make hydroelectric power and control seasonal flooding, they will be in better shape, but all that takes time.
In the interim, expect things to continue as they are. They will become the next superpower, and will probably surpass us. And it isn't Walmarts fault, it is our own, collectively and individually.
 

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galenrox said:
This is ridiculous. We opperate within a capitalist system, and yet we turn on groups that are good at it.
I don't like the anti-union feel within Walmart, but people don't have to work there.
And let's just think, why exactly to smaller businesses fall to Walmart? Because the people shop at Walmart because they get what they want for less money. Getting rid of Walmart would just eliminate the choice people have to get what they need for cheap, and since a lot of people don't have a lot of money, why in God's name would we want to do that.

Personally, I don't shop at Walmart too much, but I definately shop there, and I'm definately glad it's there, cause I couldn't afford half the stuff that I have if it weren't for Walmart.

YOUr absolutely right with your assesment

there ought to be laws against certain aspects
 
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Canuck

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George_Washington said:
I hate Walmart, I never shop there. It's always so crowded and dirty in there.
I dont blame you they are building China's military might,while China is converting
the debt that is owed by america to china into commodities
 

Canuck

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galenrox said:
lol, man, to be perfectly frank, I expected a more abrasive response, that was a pleasent suprise :cool:
What do you suggest?
blow them all to kingdom come they are taking advantage of America's
position to levarage cheap labour and hand over much wealth to china's military

lol
seriously though not much can be done the damage has been done
I just wanted to post this article to show the practices in place that has allowed Walmart to walk all over America

unless other more smarter minds then myself can come up with plausable ways .

I am afraid we up *****s creek without a paddle
 

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galenrox said:
Personally, I don't think that Walmart has really done anything wrong. They have operated within the system and done extremely well, and any faults you hold on Walmart are actually the fault of the system, not Walmarts.

First, I don't think trade with China should be legal until certain criteria are met, i.e. institution of a free market within their own country, and the Yuang must be transitioned into a floating currency.
Also I think steps need to be made within the WTO to adress labor as any other commodity, and thus any legislation that has effects on the domestic and international cost of labor would be viewed as anti-free trade and thus needs to be punished. This would include nations that do not allow labor unions, since we can all admit that the reason the cost of labor is so high here is because of the over all cost of goods has increased with the amount increases in pay that come from the labor unions back in the day.
I can't agree more
currently China is buying comoditities,gold etc..
they dont hold much currency they hold about 380 billion in us treasuries
japan holds about 700 billion in Us treasuries

China sees that the position of the US $ is weakening with respect to it
being the currency of prominence around the world
as such they have moved to buy up comodities and others
so they are better protected which is to say they dont expect to be paid for the treasuries in todays valuation of the us currency instead they get favours in the here and now
like access to trade with the US consumer.and are actually demanding more freer trade with the US waving their US treasury bills in america's face it's
like blackmail

extracted from my last thread
the signs of a weakening dollar read it


1. China has ended its currency peg to the dollar. The new exchange rate system for the Yuan is admittedly not yet a dramatic break from the dollar fixed peg . That is not the Chinese way. It is nevertheless hugely symbolic. It serves notice that China will be increasingly reluctant to accumulate dollars they know will depreciate in value over time. Chinese economic spokesmen have made no secret in public of their alarm at US profligacy - what is said behind closed doors?

the fall the us $ from prominence wont be over night but each peg it drops will leave the $ with less value
America's debt and the EURO's robustness have started that shift away from the $
 
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George_Washington

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galenrox said:
This is ridiculous. We opperate within a capitalist system, and yet we turn on groups that are good at it.
I don't like the anti-union feel within Walmart, but people don't have to work there.
And let's just think, why exactly to smaller businesses fall to Walmart? Because the people shop at Walmart because they get what they want for less money. Getting rid of Walmart would just eliminate the choice people have to get what they need for cheap, and since a lot of people don't have a lot of money, why in God's name would we want to do that.

Personally, I don't shop at Walmart too much, but I definately shop there, and I'm definately glad it's there, cause I couldn't afford half the stuff that I have if it weren't for Walmart.
See I've actually found just as good if not better deals at other places. Plus at Walmart, as far as food goes, they carry like the cheapest of everything and I can't find some imported stuff I like to get there. And as far as electronics goes, I've found just as good deals at Best buy.
 

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George_Washington said:
See I've actually found just as good if not better deals at other places. Plus at Walmart, as far as food goes, they carry like the cheapest of everything and I can't find some imported stuff I like to get there. And as far as electronics goes, I've found just as good deals at Best buy.
washington day specials lol
 

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I think its important to realize wal-marts position won't last forever, no matter what "damage" its done.


As more small businesses accomadate to a globalized life style, they become more competitive not just here, but overseas too. In this little old town of 700 people there are 3 businesses off the top of my head I can think of that are doing business in China, and I think this really says something. Globalization does work, and its probably going to be for the better in the long run.
 

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128shot said:
I think its important to realize wal-marts position won't last forever, no matter what "damage" its done.


As more small businesses accomadate to a globalized life style, they become more competitive not just here, but overseas too. In this little old town of 700 people there are 3 businesses off the top of my head I can think of that are doing business in China, and I think this really says something. Globalization does work, and its probably going to be for the better in the long run.
The main problem here is that often times companies like Walmart get the rights to market in north America said items
 

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galenrox said:
I live in a relatively rural area, and there are only a few major stores, there's a KMart, Walmart, a local Co-op, a Hyvee, and Handimarts and Kum and Gos. KMart is worthless, cause for all practical purposes it's just Walmart with less stuff for higher prices. The local Co-op has high quality stuff, so if I'm looking to cook a good meal I go there, but it's a LOT more expensive. The Hyvee is good for actual food, since we don't have a super Walmart, and thus they don't carry produce or anything that isn't prepackaged. Gas stations are really only good for cigarettes and beer and such.
And everything else goes to Walmart. I got the surround sound for my TV for $40 at Walmart, 90% of my DVDs I've bought at Walmart, all of our sheets and curtains, a lot of my clothes, my shoes, hygine items, etc. all bought at Walmart. It's not the nicest of places, but when you combine the convinience with the price, Walmart is by far the best to shop at. Plus I don't even know where the nearest Best Buy is, it's probably a few towns over in some direction, so probably between 20 and 30 miles away.
Yeah, I understand man. I guess I'm lucky in some respects that I live in a big city and there are tons of places to buy stuff at.
 

oldreliable67

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Excerpts from www.wal-mart.com:

Employment Overview

"Fact: More than 1.2 million Associates work at Wal-Mart in the U.S. The majority of Wal-Mart's hourly store associates in the U.S. work full-time. That's well above the 20 - 40 percent typically found in the retail industry. We are a leading employer of Hispanic Americans, with more than 139,000 Hispanic associates. Wal-Mart is one of the leading employers of African Americans, with more than 208,000 African-American associates. More than 220,000 of our associates are 55 or older. We project we will create positions for more than 100,000 new jobs in 2005."

"Benefits

Fact: Wal-Mart offers affordable health care benefits to our associates. We work hard to offer good, affordable coverage to our people. Historically, Wal-Mart has paid about two-thirds of the cost of the Associates' Medical Plan. We insure more than 568,000 associates and more than 948,000 people in total, who pay as little as $17.50 for individual coverage and $70.50 for family coverage bi-weekly. Unlike many plans, after the first year, the Wal-Mart medical plan has no lifetime maximum for most expenses, protecting our associates against catastrophic loss and financial ruin.

Today, we offer eight health care options, plus HMOs in some areas. We have different deductibles to meet individual needs.

Associates also have access to world class healthcare at the Mayo Clinic, Stanford University Hospital, Johns Hopkins University Hospital and many other leading health care facilities without insurance approval.

In recent years, Wal-Mart has contributed 4 percent of an associate's eligible pay to the combined Profit Sharing & 401(k) plan. Our hourly associates, just like our management and executive associates, receive bonuses and other incentives for helping the company achieve its goals. In FYE 2005, we spent $4.2 billion on benefits for our associates."


...

Some seem to be critical of Wal-Mart to the point of actually accusing Wal-Mart of causing or perptuating the off-shoring of manufacturing. Wal-Mart officials correctly insist that they are much better off if they can buy merchandise made in the US. David Glass, Wal-Mart CEO from 1988 - 2000 is quoted in Thomas Friedman's book "The World is Flat" as follows:

"I spent two years going around this country trying to talk people into manufacturing here. We would pay more to buy it here because the manufacturing facilities in those towns would create jobs for all those people who shopped in our stores. Sanyo had a plant here [in Arkansas] making televisions sets for Sears, and Sears cut them off, so they decided they were closing the plant and going to move part to Mexico and part to Asia. Our governor asked if we would help. We decided we would buy television sets from Sanyo if they would keep the plant in Arkansas, and they didn't want to do it. They wanted to move it, and the governor even talked to the Japanese owning family to try to persuade them to stay. Between his efforts ours, we persuaded them to do it. They are now the world's largest producer of televisions. We just bought our 50 millionth set from them. But for the most part people in this country have just abandoned the manufacturing process. They say, 'I want to sell to you, but I don't want the responsibility for the buildings and employees and health care. I want to source it somewhere else.' So we were forced to source merchandise in other places in the world."

Wal-Mart has done one thing extremely well: it has optimized its supply chain. It has focused relentlessly on three things:

1) working with manufacturers to get them to cut their costs as much as possible,
2) working on its supply chain from those manufacturers, wherever they might be in the world,, to Wal-Mart's distribution centers, to make it as low-cost and frictionless as possible, and
3) constantly improving Wal-Mart's information systems so it knew exactly what its customers were buying and could feed that information to all the manufacturers so the shelves would always be stocked with the right items at the right time.

In many ways, Wal-Mart has taken a page from the Sears, Roebuck and Company 1950's - 1960's playbook and implemented it worldwide using modern computer and communications technology. In fact, any DP forum participants that are old enough and that might have attended Harvard B School, might recognize the similiarities from some classic B school case studies of years past. In the years following WWII, Sears assembled a stable of suppliers of various goods, goods ranging from appliances to clothing, that Sears would purchase and sell under Sears own brand name (e.g., Kenmore, Allstate, Silvertone, Roebucks, etc., some of which are still in use today). Sears soon became the dominant customer to these manufacturers, and as their dominant customer, began dictating rather than negotiating terms of purchase. (Like the Ft. Smith, Ark., TV mfg. mentioned above). Sears studied their supplier's businesses until Sears knew to the penny what the suppliers cost of production were. Sears always allowed the manufacturer to earn a fair, but absolute minimum, economic profit. In that way, Sears growth far outpaced that of its nearest rival, Montgomery Ward, and eventually grew to be the world's largest retailer -- until Wal-Mart came along, that is.

Are some criticisms of Wal-Mart justified? You bet. One can only hope that there is now recognition at Wal-Mart that there is a fine line between a hyper-efficient supply chain that is helping people save money and improve their lives and one that has pursued cost cutting and profit margins to such a degree that whatever social benefits it is offering with one, it is risking taking away with the other.
 

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oldreliable67 said:
Excerpts from www.wal-mart.com:

Employment Overview

"Fact: More than 1.2 million Associates work at Wal-Mart in the U.S. The majority of Wal-Mart's hourly store associates in the U.S. work full-time. That's well above the 20 - 40 percent typically found in the retail industry. We are a leading employer of Hispanic Americans, with more than 139,000 Hispanic associates. Wal-Mart is one of the leading employers of African Americans, with more than 208,000 African-American associates. More than 220,000 of our associates are 55 or older. We project we will create positions for more than 100,000 new jobs in 2005."

"Benefits

Fact: Wal-Mart offers affordable health care benefits to our associates. We work hard to offer good, affordable coverage to our people. Historically, Wal-Mart has paid about two-thirds of the cost of the Associates' Medical Plan. We insure more than 568,000 associates and more than 948,000 people in total, who pay as little as $17.50 for individual coverage and $70.50 for family coverage bi-weekly. Unlike many plans, after the first year, the Wal-Mart medical plan has no lifetime maximum for most expenses, protecting our associates against catastrophic loss and financial ruin.

Today, we offer eight health care options, plus HMOs in some areas. We have different deductibles to meet individual needs.

Associates also have access to world class healthcare at the Mayo Clinic, Stanford University Hospital, Johns Hopkins University Hospital and many other leading health care facilities without insurance approval.

In recent years, Wal-Mart has contributed 4 percent of an associate's eligible pay to the combined Profit Sharing & 401(k) plan. Our hourly associates, just like our management and executive associates, receive bonuses and other incentives for helping the company achieve its goals. In FYE 2005, we spent $4.2 billion on benefits for our associates."


...

Some seem to be critical of Wal-Mart to the point of actually accusing Wal-Mart of causing or perptuating the off-shoring of manufacturing. Wal-Mart officials correctly insist that they are much better off if they can buy merchandise made in the US. David Glass, Wal-Mart CEO from 1988 - 2000 is quoted in Thomas Friedman's book "The World is Flat" as follows:

"I spent two years going around this country trying to talk people into manufacturing here. We would pay more to buy it here because the manufacturing facilities in those towns would create jobs for all those people who shopped in our stores. Sanyo had a plant here [in Arkansas] making televisions sets for Sears, and Sears cut them off, so they decided they were closing the plant and going to move part to Mexico and part to Asia. Our governor asked if we would help. We decided we would buy television sets from Sanyo if they would keep the plant in Arkansas, and they didn't want to do it. They wanted to move it, and the governor even talked to the Japanese owning family to try to persuade them to stay. Between his efforts ours, we persuaded them to do it. They are now the world's largest producer of televisions. We just bought our 50 millionth set from them. But for the most part people in this country have just abandoned the manufacturing process. They say, 'I want to sell to you, but I don't want the responsibility for the buildings and employees and health care. I want to source it somewhere else.' So we were forced to source merchandise in other places in the world."

Wal-Mart has done one thing extremely well: it has optimized its supply chain. It has focused relentlessly on three things:

1) working with manufacturers to get them to cut their costs as much as possible,
2) working on its supply chain from those manufacturers, wherever they might be in the world,, to Wal-Mart's distribution centers, to make it as low-cost and frictionless as possible, and
3) constantly improving Wal-Mart's information systems so it knew exactly what its customers were buying and could feed that information to all the manufacturers so the shelves would always be stocked with the right items at the right time.

In many ways, Wal-Mart has taken a page from the Sears, Roebuck and Company 1950's - 1960's playbook and implemented it worldwide using modern computer and communications technology. In fact, any DP forum participants that are old enough and that might have attended Harvard B School, might recognize the similiarities from some classic B school case studies of years past. In the years following WWII, Sears assembled a stable of suppliers of various goods, goods ranging from appliances to clothing, that Sears would purchase and sell under Sears own brand name (e.g., Kenmore, Allstate, Silvertone, Roebucks, etc., some of which are still in use today). Sears soon became the dominant customer to these manufacturers, and as their dominant customer, began dictating rather than negotiating terms of purchase. (Like the Ft. Smith, Ark., TV mfg. mentioned above). Sears studied their supplier's businesses until Sears knew to the penny what the suppliers cost of production were. Sears always allowed the manufacturer to earn a fair, but absolute minimum, economic profit. In that way, Sears growth far outpaced that of its nearest rival, Montgomery Ward, and eventually grew to be the world's largest retailer -- until Wal-Mart came along, that is.

Are some criticisms of Wal-Mart justified? You bet. One can only hope that there is now recognition at Wal-Mart that there is a fine line between a hyper-efficient supply chain that is helping people save money and improve their lives and one that has pursued cost cutting and profit margins to such a degree that whatever social benefits it is offering with one, it is risking taking away with the other.
What are you doing here this is from the lunatic fringe why are you accepting this
 

oldreliable67

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What are you doing here this is from the lunatic fringe why are you accepting this
Are you serious? You are joking, right? You are being facetious, right?

The italicized portions are quotes from Wal-Mart reports. With over 1 million employees, Wal-Mart can hardly be called 'fringe' anything. Its a matter of public record, its in their audited Annual Reports to Shareholders and 10-Ks to the SEC. Look it up.

Clearly, you never attended Harvard B School, or you would recognize the case studies reference. Ah, I take that back: you probably aren't old enough to have attended the B School when they were using those case studies; they are a bit dated. Applicable, but dated. Oh, hell, do you even know what I'm talking about when I refer to 'case studies'?

BTW, don't bother replying. You are going on ignore in the next couple of minutes.
 
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