Wal-Mart, the Big Bad Wolf of the Economy

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Wal-Mart is one of the largest corporations in America today. It serves to millions of consumers a day and is known for its motto “lower prices everyday.” For the last few years however, there has been the controversy of whether Wal-Mart is truly good for the American economy or not. On one hand people believe Wal-Mart is good for the economy because it saves the average consumer money due to the low priced products. Along with being an easy one stop shop where everything a person could possibly need is found there. Aside from the low prices and convenience, Wal-Mart is bad for the American economy. In early December of 2005 a poll was commissioned by Wakeup Wal-Mart, a union-funded group that has been pressuring Wal-Mart to raise employee wages and benefit’s the poll found that fifty six percent of Americans believe that Wal-Mart is no good for the economy (Majority Says Wal-Mart Bad For America). Their reasons for believing so were because of the vast majority of products Wal-Mart imports from China, the way they treat their employees, and the fact that whenever a Wal-Mart is built small businesses around it will suffer severely.

According to an article in China Business Weekly, seventy percent of all commodities sold in Wal-Mart are made in China. In fact, if Wal-Mart was an individual economy it would rank at China’s eighth biggest trading partner, ahead of Russia, Australia, and Canada (The Real Wal-Mart Facts). In the beginning of Wal-Mart’s existence, founder Sam Walton was a firm believer in “Made in America”, “Bring it home to the USA”, and the “Buy America” program. In an interview with Jon Lehman, previous store manager of Wal-Mart for 17 years, he recollects a time with Walton. He explained how Walton “was all about going to factories in America that were closing like a flannel-making factory… they couldn’t make flannel shirts in America as cheaply as they could in China, so the factory closed. Three hundred something jobs were down. Sam went to...
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