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July 10, 2013

D.C. City Council Tries To Extort Wal-Mart, Wal-Mart Declines The Opportunity

D.C. is really a tale of two cities in one. There are the touristy/wealthy neighborhoods and then there are, for want of a better term, slums.

Wal-Mart has proposed to build three stores, one in the city's 5th Ward and two in the 7th Ward. These are two of the poorest areas in the city (pdf).

The highest poverty rates in DC are found in an area largely made up of Wards 7 and 8. Nearly one in three residents in this area living below poverty in 2010, an increase of one-sixth since 2007.


The largest jumps in poverty rates were found largely in Wards 4, 5 and 6.

So naturally D.C. is welcoming this type of corporate commitment to lousy areas desperately in need of jobs, right? Er, no.

The D.C. Council bill would require retailers with corporate sales of $1 billion or more and operating in spaces 75,000 square feet or larger to pay their employees no less than $12.50 an hour. The city’s minimum wage is $8.25.

While the bill would apply to some other retailers — such as Home Depot, Costco and Macy’s — a grandfather period and an exception for those with unionized workforces made it clear that the bill targets Wal-Mart, which has said it would open six stores, employing up to 1,800 people.


But [Ken Jacobs, chairman of the University of California at Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education] said that has long been Wal-Mart’s way in taking on these types of proposals: “There’s good reason to believe they could actually compete quite well under these rules, but it is not a proposition they have wanted to test.”

I love that last quote. I mean I'm shocked that one of the most successful companies in the world isn't interested in the economic theories of some left wing professor at Cal Berkeley.

At some point you'd think liberals would learn a basic fact: wages are a reflection of how much an employer has to pay to get workers of a certain level of quality. Wages are not charity handed out to enable workers to live at a certain level. You want to make more money? Great, make yourself more valuable to an employer. But that's too hard for too many hardcore Democratic voters so they want the state to impose an acceptable wage level on employers unrelated to their actual worth.

Wal-Mart has said f the bill passes they will reconsider building the stores (hint: reconsider means "will not").

It's absolutely outrageous that a government would single out a company for punishment simply to make some sort of political point. That they would do so to a company willing to bring investment, jobs and services to areas most other people are unwilling to touch is beyond stupid.

These idiot liberals would really rather just make a point (what it is I haven't a clue) than to see "their people" have a chance to get ahead a bit.

Remind me again why people think Democrats care about the poor.

It's disgusting.

digg this
posted by DrewM. at 10:22 AM

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