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View Diary: Walmart & 13 Major Retailers Refuse Factory Safety Pac - Death Toll Estimated 1,300 (49 comments)

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  •  Yes, that is certainly true but also. . . (12+ / 0-)

    It is true that their customers need to care, it is also true that their customers have far more power than the actual corporation but that is one tough hill to slog up. Even getting people educated as to what happened, never mind caring is depressingly difficult in this "The Voice" culture.

    But, the single most depressing angle to this story is just how cruel and heartless this shows Wal-Mart is. $500,000 is quite literally, nothing - not even a rounding error. It is the amount that would be, what? 10% of ONE of the top execs bonus - spread out over all the executives, it wouldn't rise to even 1% but they simply do. not. care.

    Corporate culture is changing. It has gone from relatively indifference to true evil. When a group of people cannot give up less than 1% - much less, probably - in order to prevent thousands of deaths, that shows a deep seeded contempt for life, a level of greed that rivals some of history's greatest monsters.

    Blessed are the peacemakers, the poor, the meek and the sick. Message to Repug Fundies: "DO you really wonder "what would Jesus do?" I didn't think so.

    by 4CasandChlo on Sat May 18, 2013 at 09:32:16 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  The government in Bangladesh is already (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      4CasandChlo, cotterperson, a2nite, Lujane

      making fixes to the laws there, and so as usual with these kinds of tragedies (such as the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire) there is good that comes out of it. I think that these large American retailers are taking careful temperature of their customers to determine if they want to pay a few dollars more for better working conditions in the Third World. And I think that so far in general the consumers are saying no. That is why Walmart, Target, Sears, Penny's, etc. are saying no. Basically everyone is saying no (for now).

      •  I am in total agreement with you. . . (2+ / 0-)
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        cotterperson, Lujane

        I am only addressing the $500,000 figure mentioned above which is not even close to enough to make  WalMarts corporate profits suffer.

        WalMart is one of the most profitable corporate "gangs" in the world, in reality, they don't even need to pass on any cost adding up to that amount. The very fact that they need to take their customer's temperature for this piddly amount is just soooo evil. I agree that is what they are doing.

        And again, for real reforms, those that are international and more proactive, there definitely needs to be an educational process for its customers. We need them to be aware, to take interest in it, to make it HURT their profit by a boycott. I am more certainly in agreement and support fully the idea you offered.

        I was just, well, so f'king angry to hear THAT level of indiffierence by the executives to that specific amount.

        Blessed are the peacemakers, the poor, the meek and the sick. Message to Repug Fundies: "DO you really wonder "what would Jesus do?" I didn't think so.

        by 4CasandChlo on Sat May 18, 2013 at 09:52:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, they are rich indeed. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cotterperson, Lujane, llywrch

          But that wealth comes from making a teeny tiny amount on an enormous volume of goods. They cannot sell imports from Southeast Asia at a $2 or $3 loss. They work to make a few cents on everything they sell, net.

          •  I understand that (2+ / 0-)
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            cotterperson, Lujane

            I am not so dim as to not appreciate that their profits come from volume and they can't profit from a loss. I also get that real reform, reform costing far more than $500,000, to prevent such abhorrent conditions would require passing the cost on to customers. I am also not so dim that they would not pass on that cost to customers, for which the customers would need to care enough to agree to pay (although on most goods it is probably far less than a dollar) and that would require getting their customers to care.

            I get that, please don't twist what I said to make me sound like a complete idiot (enormous volume/not a loss/increased cost).

            I will try this one last time, they were asked to make a one time pledge of $500,000, a truly meaningless amount for Walmart.  It could actually come out of their advertising budget to "show they care" and could easily be covered by the profits from perhaps one day.

            It is not paying that one time cost out of already made enormous profit that I found revolting, I agreed with everything else you said.

            Blessed are the peacemakers, the poor, the meek and the sick. Message to Repug Fundies: "DO you really wonder "what would Jesus do?" I didn't think so.

            by 4CasandChlo on Sat May 18, 2013 at 10:27:59 AM PDT

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            •  It an annual amount, not one time, but still (0+ / 0-)

              easily affordable by WalMart.  As you say, it could come out of their advertising budget and probably be a net gain in public opinion relative to other types of advertising.

      •  Do NOT dump this on "consumers" (5+ / 0-)
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        elwior, 4CasandChlo, a2nite, bluesheep, Lujane

        That horse has been beaten to death.

        "We gave you what you wanted..." is NOT the truth. It's an attempt at rationalization of failed distorted theories.

        These results come from self-centered dweebuses on their bizness school ratwheel and the self-reinforcing model that's been built on twigs and sticks.


        A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit.

        by bronte17 on Sat May 18, 2013 at 10:18:04 AM PDT

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        •  Your argument is unclear. (0+ / 0-)
          •  The argument is that it is the customers fault: (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            bluesheep, Lujane, doingbusinessas

            That customers would only shop there b/c they have "rock bottom prices" and if it were raised ever so slightly they would go elsewhere.

            It IS bullshit. Their prices are sure as hell not "rock bottom" or they would not be the most profitable company going - they ARE the lowest, sort of, but not rock bottom, there is a ton of "profit" built in and over their volume it adds up to billions. Since it adds up to billions, a few million here and there is an amount any person with any ethical sense would pay - - even if it cost their exec's a thousand off a bonus of $250,000 a year.

            Yes, it would decrease profits - SOME. But by so little it is demonstrative of contempt for humanity. Same as paying their employees a livable wage, it could EASILY come from their monstrous profts, they just choose to not do it, execs prefer their multi-million dollar bonuses every year, to a 6% less multi-million dollar bonus a year.

            It is sickening.

            Blessed are the peacemakers, the poor, the meek and the sick. Message to Repug Fundies: "DO you really wonder "what would Jesus do?" I didn't think so.

            by 4CasandChlo on Sat May 18, 2013 at 10:38:05 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  It's not about some profitability here and (0+ / 0-)

              there. It is about an ethos of giving the consumer what the consumer wants. It is not Walmart et als job to tell Bangladeshis what their building codes or labor codes should be, or to tell their own customers what they should be willing to pay extra for. That is not their role. This is a problem, but the problem needs to be solved by the right people. And for all the sorrow here over working conditions in the Third World, there is not a whole lot of recognition of what these peoples' lives would be like if they did NOT have these shitty jobs. I've seen it myself, I've seen the slums and the effect of desperate poverty. And in my book, these jobs, despite their negatives, are a godsend to these people.

              •  I give up. (4+ / 0-)

                The Walton siblings net worth is 96 Billion dollars - which reflects the amounts that company is making over the years.

                The day that I see the Waltons (and the execs) agree to a 10% decrease in future profits or past (whatever) and the Walton fortune somehow plummets to 86 Billion b/c they decided to ensure factories didn't implode and their workers could make a semi-decent wage only THEN will I start looking at whether they have done "enough" that I don't see them as evil incarnate.

                "These people should be thankful for their jobs" - Well, yeah, as individuals, big picture - Walmart needs SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE to make the shit they make their billions of off and they went to the place they could pay the absolute lowest cost conceivable and put them in places they can die, cheaply.

                I so totally give up. If you want to blame the customers  and corrupt foreign governments- SOLELY - fine, nothing I can say will make you think otherwise.

                Blessed are the peacemakers, the poor, the meek and the sick. Message to Repug Fundies: "DO you really wonder "what would Jesus do?" I didn't think so.

                by 4CasandChlo on Sat May 18, 2013 at 11:10:18 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'm going to jump in this frying pan... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  llywrch

                  A lot of Walmart customers have very little choice on where to shop.  Yes they can be ignorant, mis-informed lot, but many are just poor.  For a lot of them a NEW shirt/jeans/shoes are a major purchase.  Goodwill/Salvation Army/etc. is where they shop for clothes.  Also they have no where else to shop as the mom/pop stores closed down when the big SuperWalmart rolled into town.  

                  I for one am disappointed in Target for not signing.  As for Walmart, I thought they wouldn't do anything to upset the profit line.. Even if they have to raise the price of a shirt by a penny each to cover the cost of improving labor standards overseas.

                  In truth, when I was unemployed, living off donations, family help, etc. Walmart was the only place we could afford clothing/food/etc. Yes most of the stuff I got died not too long after we arrived here in the Seattle area.  Only our IKEA stuff has lasted longer (I have a bedroom suites , kitchen table, chairs, pots/pans, etc. that I got back in '96 that are still going/in use.).

                  "Death is the winner in any war." - Nightwish/Imaginareum/Song of myself.

                  by doingbusinessas on Sat May 18, 2013 at 12:42:22 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

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