Wal-Mart's storm could have hit here

  • Article by: ANN GRAHAM
  • Updated: April 29, 2012 - 6:53 PM

The ethically challenged company had great ambitions to be a big banker.

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pumiceApr. 29, 12 7:11 PM

Re: "Wal-Mart recognizes the profit potential in providing banking services to a captive market of relatively unsophisticated, cash-strapped, low- to moderate-income shoppers." Does this sentence remind anyone else of Tennessee Ernie Ford's version of "Sixteen Tons" -- in particular the lines "another day older and deeper in debt" and "I owe my soul to the company store"? Is the modes unsophisticated, cash-strapped, low- to moderate-income shopper that far removed from sharecropping, truck farming and coal mining? Is consumer debt bondage that far removed from pre-union forms of labor bondage?

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viktorvaughnApr. 29, 1210:15 PM

Pumice, no it's not that different. Modern day American wage slavery has a more complex form than indentured servitude of the past, but there are similarities. At it's core it's the exploitation of worker's labor for the profit of the few. Unskilled jobs give little opportunity for breaking the hand-to-mouth paycheck-to-paycheck cycle that leaves folks very dependent on those who wish to exploit them. Gaining skills with an education in an attempt to break this cycle can tether someone with crushing debt for decades to come. We've made progress in areas(OSHA etc), but we've since been moving backwards and aren't that 'far removed from pre-union forms of labor bondage.'

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jsens3Apr. 30, 12 7:17 AM

WalMart's success has been built on offering products to consumers at low prices. This has generated screams of protest from those who made good money exploiting the public with higher prices. But, in spite of those complaints, the WalMart parking lots are crowded while those of others are often sparsely occupied. Many I know disparage WalMart but shop there! As a Canadian writer said, "they hate WalMart in their heart but love it in their wallet." (As for Mexico, its common knowledge that bribery is endemic there. I feel for Mexicans, but that's the way it is.) Obviously the established banks fear WalMart competition. Bank of America and Wells Fargo haven't exactly been model citizens over the past decade or so. Maybe a WalMart bank would be more favorable to low wage customers.

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jgmanciniApr. 30, 12 8:14 AM

"Many I know disparage WalMart but shop there!"----------I NEVER shop at Wal-Mart, so I guess I'm free to disparage them all I want. I won't give them a dime of my hard-earned money. I'm sure they don't miss my business one bit, but I sleep better at night. Are other companies perfect? No. But at least most of them don't purposely bulldoze their way over everything and everyone in their path while waving an American flag.

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hjlazniApr. 30, 12 9:42 AM

THE BANKING INDUSTRY AND THE REST OF THE POPULATION AMAZINGLY LIVE WITH THREE ILLOGICAL PARADIGMS. 1. THE MORE MONEY DOWN YOU PAY UP FRONT THE LESS CHANCE YOU WILL MISS A PAYMENT EVEN THOUGH YOU NOW HAVE LESS MONEY AND 2. IF THEY BELIEVE YOU ARE AT RISK OF MAKING FUTURE PAYMENTS THEN YOU GET A HIGHER RATE AND HIGHER PAYMENT, ALSO, 3. THEY WANT YOU TO MAKE PAYMENTS LATE, SO THEY MAKE MORE ON FEES WHICH LEAVES YOU LESS AVAILABLE MONEY TO MAKE YOUR PAYMENTS. ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES, PLEASE ENACT LEGISLATION,YOU CAN NAME IT, "THREE LENDING PARADIGMS LAW".

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gimbelApr. 30, 1210:04 AM

jsens3 Apr. 30, 12 7:17 AM WalMart's success has been built on offering products to consumers at low prices.

Not quite. Their success has been built on beating down every single supplier to the lowest possible price, forcing suppliers to have their stuff made in China where workers get pennies per hour, and making half way decent paying jobs over here disappear.

Big patriot, that Walmart. Billions for the Walmart family, joblessness and hunger for everybody else.

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my4centsApr. 30, 1212:18 PM

All I got from this article are allegations against Wal-Mart, nothing yet proven or prosecuted. And if we allowed them to form a banking charter they would hurt other banks by offering consumers the same products at a lower cost.

IF some people at Wal-Mart broke the law, then we should pursue those cases and punish those involved. But not allowing a banking charter because we fear having to bail them out in the future is ridiculous. Get government out of the bail-out business, and let companies like Wal-Mart that offer products that millions of people desire do so without scare tactics like this.

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patasticApr. 30, 12 1:41 PM

"What if Wal-Mart's phenomenal growth in the banking sector had occurred in the United States?"---It didn't. So, this whole article is based on a hypothetical that didn't happen? Maybe you should have written an expose on what would have happened if Wal-Mart had started offering human kidneys for sale. That's something they haven't done as well. But it would make for a great headline.

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gimbelApr. 30, 12 4:39 PM

From the article: "At a minimum, the competitive advantage Wal-Mart can achieve through combining its banking and commercial locations, operations and marketing could be a real threat to more traditional U.S. banks, especially community banks."

So the Cons on here think it would be just dandy to allow Walmart to gobble up the community banks in the U.S.

Walmart is already the largest employer in the U.S. and probably the whole world. And now we are supposed to make them a present of the banks? Thank goodness the government had the good sense to turn down their applications for banking licenses.

I'd keep my money under the mattress before I'd deposit it in a Walmart bank.

It's apparant from this article that at the very tip top the Walmart bosses were corrupt and dishonest, trying to cover up bribery and illegal activities in Mexico. But these are the kinds of people righties admire and defend at every turn.

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aeneumanApr. 30, 12 5:46 PM

WalMart is a great company that has caused America to be become more efficient in the ways that business is conducted. That drives liberals mad. WalMart, as with any company, is not without shortcomings, but the liberal hate directed towards this company is old and tiring. As much as liberals hate change they better get used to it because it is happening all the time.

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