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A protest sign against Wal-Mart with the U.S. Capitol in the background in Washington, March 29, 2011. REUTERS/Larry Downing
Things are looking tough for our favorite corporate exploiters.
The world's largest retailer, which gets more than half its sales from groceries, on Thursday gave a disappointing full-year forecast. It blamed sharp cuts in food stamp benefits and higher payroll taxes that are will hit disposable income for its core customers. Wal-Mart shares fell 2.2 percent in morning trading.
Walmart helped create the low-wage economy and GOP-style anti-government corporatism that is now, ironically, biting it in its ass. But there's more to the retailer's problems than austerity cuts. Fact is, its business model is increasingly an anachronism.
Cold weather and a reduction in food stamp benefits aren't the only reasons behind Wal-Mart's lowered fourth-quarter forecast.

The big-box discounter is in need of a bricks-and-mortar makeover, analysts said. To resonate with today's shopper, Wal-Mart needs to move its stores closer to major population centers, shrink the square footage of its superstores and shutter about 100 underperforming U.S. locations, they suggest.

Please read below the fold for more on this story.

Indeed, look at the recent revenue trends for the retailer:

Chart showing same-store sales down at Wal-Mart and Target because, in part, gas prices
You can't blame food stamp cuts for that kind of steady decline. Energy prices and the corresponding shift in our car culture are getting part of the blame:
"It appears increasingly uneconomic for the customer to drive 20 to 30 miles round trip to a supercenter to save a marginal amount on consumable goods—particularly when consumables, including food, are becoming more broadly distributed," [Credit Suisse analyst Michael] Exstein said.
So now analysts are demanding that Walmart start shuttering those stores in favor of smaller-footprint in-town "neighborhood market" stores. As for those increasingly decrepit concrete monstrosities outside of town?
Unfortunately, the joke's ultimately on us, or at least our local governments. The big box development model -- build on cheap land on the edge of the community with taxpayers subsidizing your hard infrastructure/transportation costs, tilting the competitive landscape in your favor in the process -- is designed to be transitory. These buildings are, unlike the miles of public pipe and asphalt that serve them, quite disposable.
Lucky for Walmart, finding space for their "neighborhood markets" shouldn't be much of a problem. There is plenty of empty retail space in those downtowns they helped decimate in the first place.

Originally posted to kos on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:48 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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  •  Tip Jar (293+ / 0-)
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  •  Not to mention... (46+ / 0-)

    ...the increasing cost of gas, up about 14 cents a gallon.  

    I'm not always political, but when I am I vote Democratic. Stay Democratic, my friends. -The Most Interesting Man in the World

    by boran2 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:54:01 AM PST

    •  Walmart is actually convenient for me . . . but I (52+ / 0-)

      drive past Walmart to a local grocery chain and buy my clothing online.  I pay a few cents more for my paper products and cat litter and cat food and toiletries precisely so I don't put any more money into their corporation.

      Hard to have a government when one-third of your representatives are insane and the other two-thirds have been sold to the highest bidder.

      by Rikon Snow on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:15:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sort of what I do. We have a Big Lots next door (9+ / 0-)

        to Wally World, and while I do hit WW for things (mostly paper goods), I'll look in BL first, and buy there when possible, just so I'm not giving WW my money. Of course, the chains probably buy from the same distributors...

        Others have remarked on Wal-Mart's stocking problems, and I have to agree. There used to be a chain called Value City, of which nothing remains but their furniture division. VC was one of those places that resells things that haven't sold elsewhere--not all junk, either; I bought a number of suits and a serviceable polyester tux there (I don't feel so bad getting it all sweaty, whereas I would with wool.) Problem was, VC had what they had when they had it. Go in one week and they were stocking something yummy in their little gourmet food section. Go back in a week and they had nothing I wanted. Ross stores' food sections are much the same way.

        Seems like whatever it is I like/need at Wal-Mart, it won't be available there for long. Even if that's for legitimate reasons, it makes me regard them as a two-bit operation, albeit a two-bit operation that carries items unavailable or for twice the price elsewhere.

      •  there are four SC WMs within 10 miles (11+ / 0-)

        I make, once a month or so, a trip of more than 100 miles to buy groceries at an HEB store instead. Why? Better prices, better produce, and I support the farmers here in Texas and next door in Mexico.

        Albertson's failed spectacularly here in about 2006, and left big vacant behemoth store locations that stood empty for years. In December the local family-owned 100+store chain that had survived competing with them ... sold out to them.

         Wal-Mart just won a zoning appeal to add 15 acres to its next new big box. That'll be five miles from me. I can walk to the "new improved" K-Mart that opened here in 1998 -- but I don't. There's ZERO customer service, the place is always hauntingly empty, and I can beat the prices two blocks down at Target.

        So there's that. Though I might stop in for a black T-shirt to wear in PT -- the pool bleaches them out in a week or so to a transparency I'm uncomfy in.

        LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

        by BlackSheep1 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:28:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I too drive by Walmart (4+ / 0-)

        Daily. It's on Caesar Chavez near downtown LA. When it opened last year there were cops out front daily because of demonstrations.

        I must be dreaming... (3764 forever!)

        by murphy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:33:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  living 35 miles from a Walmart (0+ / 0-)

        My small town rural Nebraska community offered a small friendly grocer that left a lot to be desired in variety of foods, but I've shopped there for the last 12 years because I loathe what Walmart stands for. One year ago this small grocer expanded to twice it's original size, and now our town is rejoicing! We hung in there with them and now they carry at least 90% of the fresher, nicer quality foods that are available at any Walmart! They even availed their parking lot to our last summer's annual Farmer's Market!

      •  WINCO arrived (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Winco opened a huge, new grocery store in my community, just a few blocks from a fairly new Walmart super store.  

        Winco is employee-owned, provides full time work to those who want it, pays them a living wage + benefits, and has a generous retirement plan funded by the company.  The place is staffed by capable, helpful people who work hard.  There is a low staff turnover.   Their prices are lower than Walmart, their parking lot is full 7 days a week.  

        Love it.   I think employee-owned businesses are a very good idea.   They don't use gimmicks like marking the price up and then offering a "sale".  And no "Rewards" cards.  Winco has stores in Washington State, Idaho, California, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Arizona and Texas so far.  


        •  WINCO? (0+ / 0-)

          You sure they don't just have a good marketing campaign?

          About 15 years ago, when they built the store in my neighborhood, they used all non-union contractors. Then the UFCW picketed it for several months after they opened.

          I have never been inside the place.

          For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

          by Grey Fedora on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 05:47:18 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  me too. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        a gilas girl, jsb113

        I  spend about 4-500 per month on groceries, etc. After the 'out' last fall revealed their attempt to help their underpaid employees by encouraging other underpaid employees to donate food (presumable purchased at Walmart), and counselling even more underpaid employees on how to apply for food stamps, I quit Walmart. They don't deserve my $500... I take it down the road.

      •  Imagine... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        enufenuf could buy your clothing locally, too! Because at one time, there was a tailor in town, a baker, a butcher, a hardware store, an apothecary, a carpenter, a blacksmith - whatever you could ever need - locally, self made, self manufactured.
        It always amazes me that people need a job. There are endless possibilities for 'micro-businesses', or 'Amoeba-Businesses' - doing what we need, want to be done on a fully local level. All in Co-Operative fashion.
        Hemp grows almost everywhere. Paper products can be made from hemp - locally.
        Time for the local shadow economy based on renewability, resourcefulness and sustainability.

    •  They'll be crying (5+ / 0-)

      all the way to the bank.  They'll find ways to make the great Suckertry eat the loss.  They always do.

      "Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will." ~Frederick Douglass

      by ActivistGuy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:29:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I love watching (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gary Owen, xari, enufenuf

      Gotta love Walmart being bitten in the behind by the loss of SNAP-using customers and higher gas prices, but still feel terrible about the cuts to our already pathetic social safety net.
      I can't boycott Walmart because I already have---for far longer than a decade. I live on a small island with limited shopping options. If I can't find an item in the other available stores, I try to find in online or do without. Don't need all that stuff anyway. But, if it weren't for Costco.....
      My sister, who is supposedly socially conscious still shops there but refers to it as "the store than must not be named" if she writes to me about having gone there.
      I will continue to enjoy its slide, while worrying about workers losing even those lousy jobs. Hard to enjoy anything completely anymore, isn't it?

  •  love this part (42+ / 0-)

    "...anti-government corporatism"when compared to this part-" cuts in food stamp benefits and higher payroll taxes" . guess govt as a friend isnt all walmart thought it would be

    so not only do you hate govt and make billions off that hateful business model, but you love food stamps ( not the users of them or how some food stamp recipients  are some of your employees) go figure. Now walmart finds itself losing money. darn

    I find great poetic justice in this.
    Any TParty member lives for that moment of contradiction.
    the rest of us find something to smile about

  •  "Suburban blight" (14+ / 0-)

    Every chain wants to build their own "superstore" to exacting specifications, and at this point, I think we're about finished with "era 2.0" in regards to abandoning your current location and rebuilding down the street in 10-15 years, and moving onto "era 3.0."

    I'm living in America, and in America you're on your own. America's not a country. It's just a business.

    by CFAmick on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:59:19 AM PST

  •  Everyone has always tried to guess (39+ / 0-)

    who would be the "Wal-Mart Killer".

    I have long said, and still believe, it is and will be AMAZON.

    Once they go all-in on Food and Household items delivered to your door, Wal-Mart will start feeling some serious pain.

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:59:25 AM PST

    •  amazon and (12+ / 0-)

      I order from there. They'll do prescriptions too, the FSA store is easy to manage and you don't need to worry about receipts. You can save your shopping list, and they have just about everything.

      They're also as cheap as anywhere else, and cheaper than a lot of other places.

      If you need something right now (like a prescription filled) that's a different story. But since is part of Walgreens, you probably have a brick and mortar store not far away.

      That's where things are moving. Smaller local stores (even if they're chains) that carry a selection of things, and are affiliated with a big online chain where you can get everything. And your account can be synchronized between the real and online stores.

      It really doesn't work that well with groceries, especially if you're not in a city or densely populated area, where the physical store is right around the corner.

      •  groceries (9+ / 0-)
        That's where things are moving. Smaller local stores (even if they're chains) that carry a selection of things, and are affiliated with a big online chain where you can get everything. And your account can be synchronized between the real and online stores.

        It really doesn't work that well with groceries, especially if you're not in a city or densely populated area, where the physical store is right around the corner.

        Actually, our local Kroger operation (King Soopers) has a pretty good online-driven grocery delivery operation. Elderly and disabled folks throughout Colorado love it. It's forced Safeway to adopt delivery service in the Denver Metro, and it's kicking Walmart's you-know-what because they can't afford to follow suit.

        "It's high time (and then some) that we put an end to the exceptionalistic nonsense floating around in our culture and face the fact that either the economy works for all, or it doesn't work AT all." -- Sean McCullough (DailyKos user thanatokephaloides)

        by thanatokephaloides on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:39:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Amazon (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dr Swig Mcjigger, akze29, Farugia

        I've just been tipped off to this article, which I'm about to read:

        Not sure what it ultimately holds, but it sure doesn't sound good.

        God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the mountains and I had to eat him.

        by Eagles92 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:03:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  re-thinking Amazon (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Gary Owen, PhilW

          there is a scathing article about Amazon and Jeff Bezos in the latest New Yorker.  I try to be a good citizen consumer and always only used Amazon for books.  The corporate model undercuts profits for publishing houses in much the same way Wal-Mart undercut profits to Levi's selling cheap jeans.  I'm going to go back to the book stores, use more library books and not sit on my couch ordering books for my Kindel.

          Pope Francis, it is said to have said, "Preach the Gospel, use words if necessary".

          by Miss Fanny on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 03:53:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I try to avoid Amazon, but there are times (0+ / 0-)

          when their added layer of cushion between buyer and vendor is very helpful - like when a vendor failed to ship a lift-chair for my elderly father, but also refused to cancel the order and release my funds. So if I'm making a big-dollar purchase and it's not something I can pick up myself, I'm likely to use Amazon.

      •  Reminds me of 7-Eleven in Taiwan. (0+ / 0-)

        It's a convenient store, with emphasis on CONVENIENT.

        First off, you can buy snack and drinks, like many convenient stores.

        Some of the bigger ones have essentially a sort of cafeteria food like area for you to pickup dinner.

        All 7-11 also functions as a post-office and allow people to buy stamps, mail package, pay utility bill, pay traffic fines, etc.

        Have its own cell-phone service.

        And if it's not in store, you can order online and have it delivered to the store for you to pick it up.

    •  amazon has a pretty extensive range (8+ / 0-)

      of household and food products they deliver already

      when will folks realize that free shipping costs less than driving to Walmart?

      Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
      Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

      by TrueBlueMajority on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:25:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Which is not a good thing (17+ / 0-)

      Amazon is just as bad if not worse than Wal-Mart when it comes to the way they treat their employees.

      Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

      by moviemeister76 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:16:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Story in Salon lays it bare... (18+ / 0-)

        Salon link here.

        Short excerpt:

        Amazon’s system of employee monitoring is the most oppressive I have ever come across and combines state-of-the-art surveillance technology with the system of “functional foreman,” introduced by Taylor in the workshops of the Pennsylvania machine-tool industry in the 1890s. In a fine piece of investigative reporting for the London Financial Times, economics correspondent Sarah O’Connor describes how, at Amazon’s center at Rugeley, England, Amazon tags its employees with personal sat-nav (satellite navigation) computers that tell them the route they must travel to shelve consignments of goods, but also set target times for their warehouse journeys and then measure whether targets are met.

        All this information is available to management in real time, and if an employee is behind schedule she will receive a text message pointing this out and telling her to reach her targets or suffer the consequences. At Amazon’s depot in Allentown, Pennsylvania (of which more later), Kate Salasky worked shifts of up to eleven hours a day, mostly spent walking the length and breadth of the warehouse. In March 2011 she received a warning message from her manager, saying that she had been found unproductive during several minutes of her shift, and she was eventually fired. This employee tagging is now in operation at Amazon centers worldwide.

        •  I don't shop (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          EJP in Maine, merrylib

          They are just as bad as Wal Mart and their whining about having to collect and remit online sales tax pissed me off.

          •  I agree. I'm in WA State, Amazon's headquarters. (0+ / 0-)

            We've heard all the negatives about Amazon.  

            I check reviews of items I may want to buy from other retail stores or online direct from the vendor.  I've purchased two things from them over the years.

            However, my relatives love to get Amazon gift cards!

        •  Certainly... (0+ / 0-)

          ...employes should be expected to do their job and it's hard to figure out how to determine how well employees are doing that without some form of monitoring - formal or informal. Objective monitoring and evaluation for jobs such as this which require no creativity, insight, or special training or education are generally going to be superior to subjective views of supervisors who have biases and "bad days" and personality clashes unrelated to the job at hand. The described job is one of moving the correct product from point A to point B efficiently as directed by plans generated by a computer - either you do that, or you don't.

          Amazon certainly eventually wants to replace most of these jobs with automation - just as most minimum or low wage jobs at fixed locations will be replaced over time with automation in all industries surprisingly (to some) soon - decades, not centuries.

          Really, it's ludicrous in 2014 to have humans running around a big warehouse picking most items that Amazon handles. About the only humans in the main warehousing area should be mechanics fixing/removing broken robots that the "retrieval robot" couldn't retrieve for some reason.

          However, as long as humans are cheaper than "robots" and computers, the absurdity will continue. Automation is only getting cheaper and more efficient/flexible so that curve is inescapable. The other curve that matters a lot is total cost of labor - if that goes up (more benefits, wages, etc), the two curves will intersect sooner than otherwise.

          •  Read the link. Surveillance is tip of the iceberg. (3+ / 0-)


            •  I do agree... (0+ / 0-)

              ...that Amazon is a horrible place to work (by the way, it's horrible for many higher skill professionals to work as well -- it's not just warehouse workers).

              I believe some of the things in the article (previously reported elsewhere as well) are inappropriate.

              For example, employees should clock in BEFORE standing in line for security screening after a break and AFTER security screening is complete at the start of a break. Time spent standing in line waiting for screening is company not personal time.

              As well, the temperatures in warehouses should not be allowed to rise to the point where healthy people are collapsing and obviously Amazon has overstepped here. However, it is likely reasonable for Amazon to only hire people who are able to tolerate somewhat elevated heat levels if the cost of conditioning the space is high.

              I can't judge the "ill fitting boots" problem in the UK as I don't understand why Amazon is buying their employees boots and recognize that any new shoe, used extensively, is going to initially create some pressure points and some unhappy wearers.

              On the other hand...

              I've got no problem with quotas, and when discovering a better way to work, expecting workers to follow those better ways and increasing quotas. If they are pushing all workers beyond their capabilities Amazon will spend more money hiring/training equally unproductive workers to replace the ones they fired. Amazon is not stupid -- they would not waste money with the firing/hiring/training cycle if there were not people able to do the work.

              Consider if one was running a ditch digging service in the old days (before such unskilled jobs were mostly replaced by just a few skilled workers operating capital intensive machines - trackhoes, backhoes etc). If the top 1/3 of your workers could excavate X cubic feet of dirt a day and the bottom 1/3 could only excavate X/2 cubic feet of dirt a day, wouldn't you try to get the slower workers to increase their productivity and, if they couldn't, replace them with a new crop of ditch diggers of which you would expect 1/3 to do much better, 1/3 to do a little better, and 1/3 to do about the same as the workers they replaced (of course, the last group would, if unable to adapt, be replaced). Yes, obviously, older/weaker workers are likely to be replaced -- but that's true of NFL linebackers also and I rarely hear complaints about that. It's a physical job, some people are more physically capable than others -- just as success as a structural engineer benefits from intellectual strengths and I don't hear many complaints that we should have buildings designed by structural engineers who are not competent (in fact, at least in some areas, the government insures this won't happen by licensing structural engineers and requires that they sign off on plans - the government does the dirty work in that case by excluding the less competent).

              I've also got no problem with "no talking on the line" (assuming, of course, that work talk is not required to do one's job). That's for breaks, lunch, before/after work.

              Obviously, Amazon is mostly using workers in the warehouses as robots. They will continue to replace the humans with automation over time and the workers won't have to tolerate the conditions they don't like (unfortunately, some will almost certainly become chronically unemployed). There's a reason that Amazon bought Kiva Systems a couple of years ago and that Foxconn is reportedly working with Google on industrial robotics and is expected to build hundreds of thousands of robots to replace workers on their assembly lines in the near future.

              •  Spoken like a true friend of the people! (0+ / 0-)

                You must have mad progressive credentials, to speak in such glowing terms of the ability of companies to treat employees like robots, and approve so highly of replacing basic laborers with automation when their bodies are too decrepit to function any longer.

                We should totally push to have these views added to the Democratic platform. I'm sure workers everywhere will be thankful.

        •  The NSAification (0+ / 0-)

          of America's serfs and serfs everywhere. I am a nurse and it is being done to us.

      •  Cause and effect (6+ / 0-)

        People everywhere are sick of the out-dated, labor-intensive, geographically disparate, limited-selection, gimmicky retail model laden with layer upon layer of profit margins in vertically aligned specialty stores or failing attempts at horizontally cross-sectioned "department stores".

        If I never step foot in another shopping mall, over-priced boutique or local shop hanging out a shingle to hawk crap it will be too soon.  I am far, far, far from alone.  There is not a single thing I buy today that I don't either already get online (not necessarily from Amazon, just online) or actively think about my options for doing so.

        The internet is the only entity that can stock everything for everyone everywhere.

        Its what people want, everywhere in the world and Amazon has figured out how to provide it.  They will make TRILLIONS at this.  They are one of the biggest market disrupting innovators in the last 20 years.

        When Tesla does this with car dealerships we all applaud and cheer it on (Screw you Texas!)  If there was someone out there doing it to cable companies we'd fall all over ourselves praising it.  Same with recording labels, ISPs, utility companies and any other industry we think needs a swift kick below its bottom line.

        But when it is something as monumentally inefficient as brick-and-mortar retail, then its "OH NOEZ!  The Momz-n-Popz!!1!"    

        Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

        by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:40:27 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't disagree (8+ / 0-)

          I hate shopping in stores. I just think we should be mindful that online retailers aren't any different than brick and mortar stores in how the employees are treated. And in some ways, they are worse, because they are able to operate out of the public eye since customers don't actually go into any store to see the employees.

          Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

          by moviemeister76 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:42:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Agree 100% Especially as ppl young & old move back (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mr Robert

          to dense cities where cars are not needed as much or even a nuisance to own at all. I live in Brooklyn without a car, and I buy things on Amazon that I never would have dreamed of ordering online when I lived at home in suburban NJ. Stuff like printer paper and ink, a stapler, coffee K-Cups, etc etc. I have a Prime account and would gladly pay more for it if Amazon decides to raise the membership price.

          I hope the shipping companies will staff up to accommodate this onslaught of online purchases. I know UPS ran into some major problems last Christmas.

          •  Xmas is always tough (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Mr Robert, mattc129

            UPS was my first real IT job.  They do not base your tenure on your start date... it is measured by how many Christmas' you've been through.

            I didn't work in the actual package centers on a day to day basis, but I was near one and I would go down after I got off in the General Office and help out... it was MADNESS.

            But yea.. the term "Amazon Elves" is already out there for the thousands of people Amazon hires temporarily in December to help handle the deluge.

            Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

            by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:22:12 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  and where will people work? (3+ / 0-)

          If we all shop online all the time, what will happen to local brick & mortar businesses who actually pay taxes to the community & bring jobs to the area? I'm with you on big box stores and gimmicky retailers with overpriced goods, and I also hate shopping, especially for clothes, BUT, there is another side of the coin. Just to start, I wouldn't want to buy all my clothes & shoes online, there's no way to try them on first. More importantly, where will people work? Those are jobs that can't be exported to China and other countries with lower wages. Will there just be a bunch of vacant real estate with empty spaces? We own a local computer business which has 7 good paying jobs, with full benefits. Maybe the future is online shopping for everything, but I hope not.

          "Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal..."-7.75, -5.54

          by solesse413 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:19:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  A lot of that real estate (4+ / 0-)

            could be redeveloped as denser urban residential.

            I get the job thing but its just not worth it, IMHO.  Not to prop up an asphyxiating business model.  ..and its not like these are GREAT jobs.  Hawking cell phones at the Best Buy or stocking shoes at Sears isn't exactly an ideal career.

            It will be governed by preference.  If people are willing to pay more to go to brick and mortar store to look and feel actual merchandise they should be prepared to pay a premium for the privilege.

            I think the "personal touch" is overrated... look at travel agents.  If people really cared about having someone handle all the details for them, they'd pay for it, but what do we see?  Travel Agents are an extinct species.  ...I can't wait to see an online company solve the Real Estate MLS access issue and put Real Estate agents out of business.

            Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

            by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:27:11 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  that's funny you said that. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Mr Robert, Nebraskablue

              had to laugh, I am a travel agent and just got back into the business after 10 years out of it. People do pay for it, you'd be surprised. :)

              "Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal..."-7.75, -5.54

              by solesse413 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:35:42 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  No doubt there are some (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                solesse413, Sparhawk, Bronx59

                and people fully recognize it now as more of a concierge service.  They see it as a value and pay accordingly.  If all they cared about was price, they'd go to Travelocity or Kayak or something.

                Im sure there will be a concierge market for real estate, but I tell ya... paying 6% graft off the top of selling the largest asset most people will ever own .. that really burns.

                Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

                by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:45:36 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  Okay, Wiper, but please address the jobs loss part (0+ / 0-)

              of your equation.

              Where will people work, as your projection plays out? At what types of jobs? Will they have to migrate to other parts of their state or country to find jobs in the shipping centers?

      •  not to mention we need B&M stores. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dick Woodcock

        we need actual brick and mortar stores rather than just roads filled with delivery trucks. Online shopping is great, but it's not for everything and I wouldn't want it to be.

        Support local businesses!

        "Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal..."-7.75, -5.54

        by solesse413 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:12:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I figured it would be greed that bought them down. (4+ / 0-)

      Like any pyramid scheme, greed is a short term business model. Hope those crazy Walton kids might have to consider part time jobs soon. And Alice Walton might have to stop her repeated drunk driving antics. Once the Walton name gets enough mud on it, old Alice won't be able to talk or buy her way out of jail again.

      "I think the Republican Party is not really a party. It doesn’t stand for anything except reelecting itself. It’s a coalition of gangs …"-David Stockman

      by GrannyOPhilly on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:23:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  We were talking the other day about the sorry (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mr Robert, Bronx59

      saga of the fall of once mighty retail giant, Sears.  With better management, they could have been Amazon.  They had the original business model, but were not smart enough to seize the internet opportunity.

      “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

      by ahumbleopinion on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:45:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Good point (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        annan, Mr Robert, Sparhawk, Bronx59

        The catalog company was definitely an early precursor to the Amazon model.

        It is quite a spectacle to watch those out-moded retail entity's utterly crumble.  Sears, JC Penny's, Marshall Fields, etc..

        The children of my generation will have the same vague not-quite-understanding reaction to the term "Department Store" as my generation had to "Drug Store".

        Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

        by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:55:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Amazon's Business Plan (0+ / 0-)

      More low wage, no benefits, temp sweatshop jobs:

      For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

      by Grey Fedora on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 06:07:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Walmart down 2.2 % (16+ / 0-)

    especially significant with S&P reaching a new high this morning.

    Ceiling Cat rules....srsly.

    by side pocket on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:59:44 AM PST

  •  The wal mart people have more (18+ / 0-)

    money than they could ever use .
    They should maybe just pack it in and call it a day .

    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

    by indycam on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:01:11 AM PST

  •  3 important things:geography, geography, geography (18+ / 0-)
    Lucky for Wal-Mart, finding space for their "neighborhood markets" shouldn't be much of a problem. There is plenty of empty retail space in those downtowns they helped decimate in the first place.

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:02:06 AM PST

    •  I would not care if they were in walking (11+ / 0-)


      No matter what they did it would not make me buy food, or anything else, from them.

      There is something in us that refuses to be regarded as less than human. We are created for freedom - Archbishop Desmond Tutu

      by Onomastic on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:48:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Walmart (5+ / 0-)

      has already opened a "smaller" neighborhood store in the Boise, ID area.  I wondered what that was about.  Now I know it's the wave of the future.  I don't wish them luck and I hope others beat them to that redeveloping smaller market.

      •  They call them (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YucatanMan, ColoTim, True North

        "neighborhood market stores" and they had several in Dallas when I went to university there from 2005-2010.  They mostly focused on grocery items, though.

        "I don't want a unicorn. I want a fucking pegasus. And I want it to carry a flaming sword." -mahakali overdrive

        by Silvia Nightshade on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:01:33 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Fortunately, there are always competitors (15+ / 0-)

          nearby, from "traditional" grocers.  I frequent Walmart's competition, but still stop in now and then to buy one or two things and take a look at prices.  Interestingly, Walmart has the lowest prices on basically nothing.  Now and then, one or two items, but they really aren't cheaper than anyone else.

          There's no reason to spend money there at all, particularly given the better quality and better condition of other stores.  

          The nearest Walmart "neighborhood store" to me actually has fairly dark aisles because they don't have skylights and refuse to put in much lighting. And there are ALWAYS pallets of stuff stacked around, waiting to be unpacked and shelved. It's a mess in there, always.

          "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

          by YucatanMan on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:13:46 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  It used to be that Walmart had everything you (13+ / 0-)

            wanted or needed and a few things you didn't know you wanted or needed till you were in the store.

            Now their stock is sparse. They may not have what you want. And that is a big deal when you got your self on the outskirts of town and hiked for a few miles to get to the aisle in the store to find out it isn't there. People don't repeat that burn many times.

            Now they have the 2nd (safety net for sloppy) Amendment, and can't be infringed to actually treat their gun like a gun and not a video game controller.

            by 88kathy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:22:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  They're killing themselves (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              The business model is unsustainable. Look at the sharp spike after the stimulus; that shows how close to the edge these big box discount retailers are living.

              They've been a big factor in driving down wages so that they can offer cheap prices, so that big box stores are the only places said low wage earners can shop. Keep driving down wages and you will hit a point where no one can afford to buy anything.

              As Yucatanman said, once they try to compete with the smaller traditional model, they can't. There are also many cities that are wising up and flat out not allowing Walmarts at all - especially in town centers.

              They will die a slow death; I just hope that the big box wasteland they leave behind can be effectively restored or repurposed.

              Money should be treated like any other controlled substance; if you can't use it responsibly then you don't get to use it.

              by La Gitane on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:59:35 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  Being energy efficient is a downside? (0+ / 0-)
            refuse to put in much lighting
            As long as customers can see, why generate unnecessary CO2?
            •  Energy Efficiency doesn't mean being in darkness (0+ / 0-)

              Well-designed high efficiency lighting is usually brighter and more even than the less efficient systems it replaces.  It saves more money by cutting air conditioning requirements because it creates less waste heat.

              I'm sitting under an LED reading lamp right now, very bright at about 10 watts.

        •  We have one in Lexington, KY... n/t (3+ / 0-)

          The word "parent" is supposed to be a VERB, people...

          by wesmorgan1 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:16:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, I've driven by there (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            commonmass, Silvia Nightshade

            The first one I ever saw was in Louisville though, when I was spending the weekend there for a dog agility trial and woke up with an aching back and had forgotten my Advil.  Tiny little store just about freaked me out.  It was like they were almost trying too hard to be cool.

            I hadn't seen the one here in Lexington until around Christmas this year.

            Manufacturing outrage; the only manufacturing jobs Republicans won't outsource.

            by get the red out on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:31:15 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  I would (0+ / 0-)

      cross the street a block away and recross a block on the other side just to avoid their storefront and property line.

      •  My Walmart story... (0+ / 0-)

        I detest Walmart and EVERYTHING that encompasses them. But I do/did love Munchos, a baked chip that is, and can't for the life of me figure out why is so hard to find here. I found them at Raley's and they quit selling them. I found them at Safeway. And they quit selling them. So I went on-line and found they were selling them at Walmart. Ugh.
        I went to Safeway and got what I needed and remorsefully, went to W. There were picketers out there fighting for higher wages and I was 100% behind them but held my head in shame as I ran in, grabbed what I wanted, paid and left. As I was leaving, I apologized to the first guy with a picket sign, a wonderful gentleman with a full white beard and a twinkle in his eye and he said to me, "We know you went to Safeway first and it's okay." I walked away, not a little confused but grateful that I was forgiven by those I betrayed. I have not eaten another "Muncho" since.

        •  I don't want... (0+ / 0-)

          this to be a "Santa Claus" story. It isn't and happened just as I told it. I want nothing more than to be a part of the DKOS community and am inspired by the rhetoric, both for and against my beliefs. I'm a TRU-BLUE dem and damn proud of it and will fight to the death, my convictions and beliefs.
          Unfortunately, I live in a red district, run by none other than the evil, hate-mongering, tea-bagging, koch-backed, asshole mcclintok. (he does NOT deserve a capitol in his name)
          My motto is...

          "If you don't have common sense...You're DOOMED to be a Republican!"

  •  so... (46+ / 0-)

    ...let me get this straight...Walmart, whose owners give massive amounts of money to Republicans, is doing poorly in sales because of Republicans' insistence on cutting food stamps?

    Perhaps they might want to tell their Republican colleagues about that they might understand how cutting certain programs that benefit people harms the economy?

    •  Oh, no no no.... (13+ / 0-)

      Don't you get it?  All money put into social programs just magically disappears, just like if it was soaked in kerosene and chucked into a big hole in the ground with a lit match.

      Besides, it all goes to help undeserving people anyway, like Walmart employees trying to feed their families.

    •  but lower taxes mean lower prices plus more profit (7+ / 0-)

      Cutting food stamps means less taxes needed to pay for them.  Since taxes (and the costs associated with regulations) cut into profits, prices need to go up to make up the difference.  If taxes go down, wages and benefits go down, and the cost of doing business goes down, then prices will follow.  Profits stay the same or go up as more people can afford to buy in, and in any event it's all more righteous since the government isn't meddling on either side of the ledger.

      You have to consider that the plutocrats really believe that "supply-side" economics and the "race to the bottom" benefit consumers by making goods dirt cheap.  Wal-Mart isn't just a corporation; it's a business model.

      Domestic politics is the continuation of civil war by other means.

      by Visceral on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:57:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The wealthy people of the nation have come (11+ / 0-)

        to believe things that are demonstrably false and have been known to be false for over 40-50-60 years.

        They're pretty stupid people, aren't they?  A prosperous middle-class and strong safety net would benefit the wealthy as well.

        Instead, they are intent on "cutting their way to greater riches" and will reap the opposite as the middle class collapses and the poor go even hungrier.

        Very stupid people.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:15:58 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  some of that is from the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          YucatanMan, Visceral

          next generation of wealthy-like the waltons. born on home plate and dont have a clue how their dads got them a home run

          and then they are rich and spoiled- its a me world to them

        •  They make decisions that may be "smart" (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Visceral, YucatanMan, Bronx59

          individually, but are a disaster when taken collectively.  Which is why we need regulations and minimum standards, to create a level playing field for all companies, not a race to the bottom led by the worst ones.

          “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

          by ahumbleopinion on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:50:42 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Even if their decisions are smart individually, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            that is really good for only a short period of time. Long term, their decision-making is bad for them individually and bad for them (and us) collectively.  There's really no lasting upside to the policies they demand from and push on government.  

            They believe things that are simply untrue...

            "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

            by YucatanMan on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:57:35 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Not stupid, evil (4+ / 0-)

          The wealthy have long since met any basic need, and really any need at all.  At this point, wealth is just keeping score - more is more, which for greedheads is necessarily good.  They want to be on top of the pile, and the size of the pile is immaterial since the actual physical part of having wealth has ceased to have meaning.  What matters to plutocrats is that you and I have less than they do so policies that grow the pile run counter to that goal.  I don't see that as stupid on their part, just evil.  

          The physical suffering of peons is not a bug, it's a feature.  The exercise of power is supposed to hurt its target - that's the point.  Once we learn to reciprocate that intention, we will be on the way to doing something about it.

    •  well, they just aren't being subsidized enough-yet (0+ / 0-)

      I'm sure the Rethugs will get all over this for them. We already subsidize their shitty wages, lack of healthcare, etc. I expect a sudden change of "heart" from R's in regards to food stamps and such, but it will most definitely come in the form of pre-paid cards or something, only to be spent at "preferred" stores.

  •  Sure, there's space downtown, BUT.... (16+ / 0-)

    as Washington DC showed, there is little appetite for big businesses to roll in, pay sub-subsitence wages requiring local governments to pick up the tab, while driving out mom and pop businesses.

    Looks like Wal Mart's leverage in forcing municipalities to abandon raising the minimum is going straight down the shitter where it belongs. You come to us, now, Wal Mart. We set the terms.

  •  Depends on the down town... (28+ / 0-)
    There is plenty of empty retail space in those downtowns they helped decimate in the first place.
    Denver? Boulder?  That is some seriously expensive real estate.  And they are going to have to compete with Whole Foods, Trader Joe's,  Sprouts, local retailers and chains, etc.

    Wal-Mart has one mantra - low prices.  There is no room for quality, customer experience, shopping experience, etc.  I don't think location is going to help that.

    “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” - John Steinbeck (Disputed)

    by RichM on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:09:01 AM PST

  •  Good riddance to another blight. (9+ / 0-)

    Wal-Mart can go the way of shopping malls.

  •  Four track model (10+ / 0-)

    At least two big UK supermarket chains have developed a four strand model involving large supermarkets, small local stores, city center convenience stores and on-line delivery. Of the two main ones, Sainsbury has been more successful with their "Local" convenience stores allied to their "Central" small stores in town centers which feature more their range of prepacked sandwiches, soft drinks and "emergency" items for office workers.

    Tesco also have city center "Metro" stores and "Express" small stores for "top up" items and which usually open to 11pm.

    A combination of these has helped them (and other chains) to survive despite competition from stores like Lidl and Aldi. Aldi has just won the "Best Supermarket" in a survey by the Consumers' Association magazine "Which?" which I got today.

    In that survey Wal-Mart owned Asda came number 6 overall and worst on-line. This comment may seem familiar (transcribed as the magazine is not available on line)

    The store environment and quality of fresh food were looked on less favourably. One customer described the experience as "depressing", while another criticized the "shouting slogans" and said the store "looks like a warehouse". "I'd prefer a better, more varied range of fruit and veg" said one survey respondent. "Prices are low but the quality isn't so good" agreed another.

    "Come to Sochi, visit the gay clubs and play with the bears" - NOT a Russian advertising slogan.

    by Lib Dem FoP on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:10:09 AM PST

  •  Shopping is no longer America's favorite pastime.. (29+ / 0-)

    Maybe it's just me - but I take pride in not going shopping - especially at Malls and big stores.

    When I was growing up as a kid - going to the Mall was a "night out" - now it would be torture.

    The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

    by ctexrep on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:19:16 AM PST

    •  It is, but it has to be pleasurable. (9+ / 0-)

      Wal-Mart is a utilitarian experience, no more fun that actually having the things you buy.  

      It's not the side effects of the cocaine/I'm thinking that it must be love

      by Rich in PA on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:31:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  This, this this this (11+ / 0-)

      I have to go to the mall today.  I have to go shopping for new work pants (zipper died on one pair and it would not be worth it to repair it since I paid $5 for them years ago) and to pick up some contact lenses.

      I am dreading this - not because the mall is far away (it's a mile from my house) but because it's just such a frickin' hassle to go shopping at all.

      Even grocery shopping is done ninja-style: prepared list, quick in and out, with the goal of being done within an hour if possible.

      Shopping has become a chore to me.  

      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

      by catwho on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:10:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Couldn't agree more (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Get in and get out....but while your there - smile too...when I do shop - I try to be nice and polite.

        I worked in a mall at one time - I actually liked working and conversing with people.  I will say that some people (probably the same ones) take on a second personality when they drive and when they shop.  They become rude and nasty - which makes me want to shop even less (I have to drive - but I take back roads and try to stay off highways).  Smart phones have exacerbated the problems - I hate being run off the road by texters and I hate being walked into by texters.....I bartended for years and would gladly take a drunk over an aggressive driver or a walking texter any day of the week.

        The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

        by ctexrep on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:28:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Don't understand this part. (12+ / 0-)
    higher payroll taxes that are will hit disposable income for its core customers
    The 2% cut on social security?  That ended in 2013.   If people have limited incomes, their payroll taxes are not going up.  

    Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

    by TomP on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:22:10 AM PST

  •  In my area, WM is taking over an (8+ / 0-)

    Old grocery store (Top), less than 2.5 mi from their current superstore.  They're mostly keeping the old structure. It's across the street from a mediocre mall.  But the businesses on their side of the street are panicking.  A gourmet burger / bar is already seeing business drop.  Olive Garden is bailing out, they're already building across the street by the mall.  The remaining tenants, Michael's, Toys R Us, a couple of restaurants and Petco, are concerned about the traffic (overflow parking) and the 'riff-raff' that Walmart generates.  Folks setting up RVs in the parking lot for overnight stays.

    “that our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry.” Thomas Jefferson

    by markdd on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:23:19 AM PST

  •  duh you'd think they'd realize (6+ / 0-)

    that if cuts to food stamps hurts their core customers then they should support political advocacy that increases food stamp funding (that is, elect Ds not Rcons)

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights to talk about grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:23:51 AM PST

  •  they are also going the route of Sears (14+ / 0-)

    trying to vertically integrate to get rid of all the middle men who they used to contract with to fill their stores with product on a just in time basis.  Squeezing out the middleman has not saved costs, rather it has caused logistics nightmares, empty shelves and not so great quality at store level.  In dumping the ones who brought them to the supermarket dance they are facing glitches.  And the competition from other big boxes as well as niche retailers such as Aldi and those well run supermarkets who have remained in the field is giving them some headaches.

    •  Merchants are middlemen. Period. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dksbook, peptabysmal

      They shave from the producer and the user without providing any added value. They COULD provide value, if they assessed the quality and provide assurance to the buyer that he's getting what he's expecting. But, when it's "buyer beware," that's the furthest thing from the merchant's intent. Today's merchants buy cheap and sell dear.

      by hannah on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:45:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It would be nice if we as consumers (0+ / 0-)

    were actually making good decisions based on our priorities for our country and our lives. But no, we just wait until "nature" takes it course:

    Lucky for Walmart, finding space for their "neighborhood markets" shouldn't be much of a problem. There is plenty of empty retail space in those downtowns they helped decimate in the first place.

    ALL of our institutions have been hollowed out by the greed ethos. There are none left with heart intact or souls for that matter. So the zombie is all around us - me

    by glitterscale on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:26:05 AM PST

  •  All business models are temporary. (12+ / 0-)

    If they don't last the decade--which is an almost comically worst-case scenario--they'd still have had a 30-to-40-year run which would put them with all of those retailers who started in the postwar era and lasted through the late 1980s.  I think it's silly to mock Wal-Mart for underperforming now, because if they built the stores to address current constraints they wouldn't have been as profitable previously.

    It's not the side effects of the cocaine/I'm thinking that it must be love

    by Rich in PA on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:29:56 AM PST

  •  My (quite conservative) hometown (11+ / 0-)

    had a Wal-Mart (on the very edge of town, of course) up until the mid-90s or so.  Then Wal-Mart decided they wanted to upgrade the old Wal-Mart into a Super Center but would need some tax breaks or else they'd move up the road into an unincorporated section of the county.

    My hometown basically told them to take a hike.

    29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

    by TDDVandy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:30:08 AM PST

    •  That's rare... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chimpy, YucatanMan, TDDVandy

      Usually Wal-Mart gets what they want.  They did in my town.  Tore down a chicken processing plant to build one.  And there are other Wal-Mart super centers within a few miles.  The excuse was that the town was losing tax dollars by people going to the next town to shop.  Short term, stupid thinking.  They could have put a magnate store their and leap-frogged everyone else.

      “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” - John Steinbeck (Disputed)

      by RichM on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:41:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  well (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        My hometown was a rather upper-middle-class suburb that basically felt it could do without Wal-Mart.  Aside from which, they essentially looked at it as "if we can't get tax revenue from Wal-Mart, then what the hell is the point of having them in town?"

        29, white male, TX-07 (current), TN-09 (born), TN-08 (where parents live now)

        by TDDVandy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:24:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  fuck the walton family (13+ / 0-)

    they represent everything that is wrong to USA.

    been here, left, and might come back. Site moderation is worse everywhere else, go figure.

    by BikingForKarma on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:31:05 AM PST

  •  The problem is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annan, schnecke21

    when a WM closes - that unless their 10 year tax abatement is up - the taxpayers of any community end up with a dark store and nothing for their troubles.  ... on the upside - maybe WM leaving a community will bring back small hometown retailers that do business with other small town retailers....

    Why do Republicans Hate Americans?

    by Caniac41 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:39:04 AM PST

  •  Hahahaha! The feel-good story of the day. :-D (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Obama: Pro-Pentagon, pro-Wall Street, pro-drilling, pro-fracking, pro-KXL, pro-surveillance. And the only person he prosecuted for the U.S. torture program is the man who revealed it. Clinton: More of the same.

    by expatjourno on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:42:28 AM PST

  •  After they've run the mom-and-pop stores (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    YucatanMan, peptabysmal

    out of town, now they need to shut down their current stores and move?
       Will there be any grocery stores left for people to shop at?

    None are so hopelessly enslaved, as those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. -Johann von Goethe

    by gjohnsit on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:42:39 AM PST

  •  I'm a big consumer.... (4+ / 0-)

    ...and I have not set foot inside a shopping mall in many, many years---possibly a decade now (and I grew up as a young teen in the early 60's going to the first mall in the US---Walt Whitman Mall in Huntington, Long Island) .  

    Except for groceries, I do most of my shopping on-line, but pop into Marshall's, TJMaxx and Home Goods probably once a month, if that, and even TJMaxx has on-line shopping now which I have used.

    I still go to the store for my groceries---to my local grocery chain,  plus the local family owned grocery with a good butcher shop as well as the local specialty grocery shop. I also patronize my local hardware store---Home Depot and Lowe's fill me with dread.

    I have to think that there are more and more people who shop like I do.  

    •  I almost shop as you do, at least this part.... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Caniac41, Mr Robert
      I still go to the store for my groceries---to my local grocery chain,  plus the local family owned grocery with a good butcher shop as well as the local specialty grocery shop. I also patronize my local hardware store---Home Depot and Lowe's fill me with dread.
      For the rest, I am not much of a shopper and actually haven't bought new clothes in a couple of years. When I do need stuff, I go second hand (well, not the underwear!). Dollar stores are great, too.

      I really hate shopping - don't even grocery shop until I have nothing left.

      "May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house." - George Carlin

      by Most Awesome Nana on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:02:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Describes my shopping pattern if you add in 2X a (0+ / 0-)

      month trips to Trader Joe.

  •  As (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    this article outlines, moving even a mid-sized house can be a challenge.

    so good luck to WalMart with this!!

    To resonate with today's shopper, Wal-Mart needs to move its stores closer to major population centers,
  •  Increasingly spottily stocked merchandise, messy (9+ / 0-)

    jumbled clothing displays, outdated grocery items in back of un-rotated shelves, few open checkouts with long lines, and all the other ills associated w/understaffing I think is playing a role as well.  It's an unpleasant experience.

    Punxsutawney Phil has been unfriended.

    by jwinIL14 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 10:47:21 AM PST

  •  Walmart stores are dumps (16+ / 0-)

    Many of them are old and not kept up well and there are often empty shelves because Walmart is too cheap to hire enough workers to keep them filled.

    Targets stores are far from fabulous but they look fabulous compared to Walmart.

    Walmart is turning into Kmart.

    •  You're right about those empty shelves (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Back In Blue, dksbook, Mr Robert, quaoar

      I was shocked when I walked in and saw so many empty shelves. Not just a hole where one items was sold out but feet empty shelves in every aisle.

      I can see people saying "why bother" when they have to go to another store to find what they want. They might as well just go to the other store to start with and save time and gas.

    •  Yebbut I dont want to shop there.... (0+ / 0-)

      ....because of the the recently revealed hack of their credit card system, what, go somewhere else, get cash, then drive/ride over to Target?

      Don't think so....I just wont shop there.

      Which leads to another question? Qui Bono? Who benefits from the tarnish on Target's record?

      I wonder if the Waltonfucks had anything to do with that hack....They certainly benefit from it!

      "Ronald Reagan is DEAD! His policies live on but we're doing something about THAT!"

      by leftykook on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:20:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think Target keeps their stores in excellent (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      get the red out, live1, WisJohn, quaoar

      shape. Shelves are stocked. Employees are mostly helpful and friendly.  I prefer to shop there over the more expensive Macy's which is always dirty and messy with too few employees. Also, since I am in Minnesota, there is a Target about every 5 miles.

      President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

      by askew on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:23:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  There must be regional differences. (0+ / 0-)

        In the fairly dense suburban area I live, the "full" Walmarts and Targets are both fairly well stocked (i.e., if they carry it, they usually have it in stock) and clean - it's hard to distinguish between them on those metrics.

        The Walmarts, however, have much better selection - both in range and in selection within range. Targets also have a lot of crap that has their own "designer" names on them and are high priced for no apparent benefit (except perhaps to Target's profit margin).

        The advantage of the Targets is that they are nearly empty (except for the long lines at the checkstands) compared to the full selection Walmarts.

        But, this may be because of vibrant competition in this area and a fairly well educated consumer base - perhaps Walmart steps up in this area.

        The neighborhood Walmarts, mostly just grocery stores, however lack selection and are nearly deserted (I won't be surprised if they close one down soon - it's still a ghost town a couple years after opening). Their prices however beat any of the other real grocery stores in the area.  However, I'm not comparing it Trader Joes (due to TJs very limited selection and nearly 100% proprietary stock) or to Target (due to their incredibly limited grocery selection).

  •  Similar to buyers remorse here in AZ. (7+ / 0-)

    Wal-Mart funds the crazies, they kill food stamps, which undermines Wal-Mart's bottom line.

    In AZ, Wal-Mart and other corporations fund the crazies, they pass SB 1062 (LGBT discrimination bill), and now the chambers of commerce and other corporate mouthpieces are going nuts because the gay-bashing will wreck the economy.

    Stupid, short-sighted and mean-spirited. Serves 'em right.


    stay together / learn the flowers / go light - Gary Snyder

    by Mother Mags on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:00:12 AM PST

  •  Could see this one coming a mile away (5+ / 0-)

    long years ago.

    WalMart, attacks on Unions, off Shoring Jobs, are all part of the constant push for low wage workers and the resulting destruction of the middle class.

    With less money to spend there is going to be less purchasing power.

    It is hardly rocket science. It's just another example, like Karl Rove on election night 2014, of delusional thinking over adding up the consequences.

    People like that do not deserve to be listened to, or granted wisdom or power.

    They're idiots - full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

    It is past time to stop granting them power over our lives.

    There is something in us that refuses to be regarded as less than human. We are created for freedom - Archbishop Desmond Tutu

    by Onomastic on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:02:52 AM PST

  •  our walmart seems to still be packed (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, RainDog2, Nannyberry

    but---it's literally the only option outside of grocery stores within 30 miles.

    Dawkins is to atheism as Rand is to personal responsibility. uid 52583 lol

    by terrypinder on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:03:04 AM PST

  •  The Low Price Fallacy (10+ / 0-)

    Walmart has successfully brainwashed a large segment that they have low prices. I hate to see people filling their carts because Walmart does not have the lowest prices on most grocery items. They do have some things where the price is consistently lower and if you limit your shopping to those items, you can do ok.

    I checked out Walmart grocery prices because I use my coupons and sale items to make donations to the local food pantry so I was looking to get the most bang for my buck. That bang wasn't at Walmart. If you check the weekly grocery ads, the grocery stores are actually cheaper plus Walmart doesn't double coupons. I've even gotten many free items when I combine a sale item, a coupon, plus an ecoupon.

    I wish people would see that when it comes to Walmart, they've been had.

    •  Most food pantries would rather have money... (0+ / 0-)

      than food.  They can buy food much cheaper than you can.  And you can deduct your donation from your income tax.  Everybody wins, except the supermarket.  Boo hoo.

      I don't know what's been trickling down, but it hasn't been pleasant---N. Pelosi

      by Russycle on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 02:40:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  So you think I'm doing the wrong thing (0+ / 0-)

        Just so you know, I did check with the food pantry about giving them money or food and specifically asked if they were able to purchase cheaper. They told me they weren't. So they're very happy to have the food donations and other items that aren't covered by food stamps. They even track the donations for tax purposes and they sent me a letter for tax purposes.

        •  Good for you for checking (0+ / 0-)

          Should have said "food pantries I'm familiar with", I confess I haven't polled every pantry in the country.

          I don't know what's been trickling down, but it hasn't been pleasant---N. Pelosi

          by Russycle on Sun Mar 02, 2014 at 10:17:07 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  One of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the Wal-Mart stores in my city is really, really on the outskirts of town.  And while it's on a major road, it's not the major road for travel in and out of town on that side, in that direction.  They have a massive parking lot that is never full, even during the craziness of Black Friday.  I can only hope they close this particular store.

    "I don't want a unicorn. I want a fucking pegasus. And I want it to carry a flaming sword." -mahakali overdrive

    by Silvia Nightshade on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:06:37 AM PST

  •  I love the smell of capitalism in the morning. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If life weren't so damn hard, we’d have no need for fabric softeners.

    by glb3 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:10:06 AM PST

  •  Going to Wal-Mart is an unpleasant experience (7+ / 0-)

    and it gets more unpleasant if the expected or needed goods aren't on the shelves. Over time, it becomes unpleasant if the purchased items break or fail on their initial uses, something that happened to both my daughter's first purchases at Wal-Mart. She insisted we go there... Wal-Mart made her mother look smart and lost themselves a customer for life over two items that were less than $5.

    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

    by elfling on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:11:33 AM PST

  •  old Walmart stores = Hydroponic fields (5+ / 0-)

    to replace the land they covered.

    Now they have the 2nd (safety net for sloppy) Amendment, and can't be infringed to actually treat their gun like a gun and not a video game controller.

    by 88kathy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:13:21 AM PST

  •  I'm 20 miles from WalMart, 70 from Costco... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koosah, Back In Blue, Powell, RainDog2

    Haven't shopped Walmart for at least a year, shop Costco a couple times a month. Why? Walmart isn't any cheaper, stuff out of stock, and poor quality stuff. I drive right past Walmart to shop at local hardware stores, HyVee grocery, etc..

  •  Walmart has fucked over so many (14+ / 0-)

    that it has run out of people, cities, and companies to fuck.

    Back in the early 2000's, Gourmet Magazine ran an article about Walmart's practices with regards to its suppliers. (The magazine itself is now long defunct, and their website now does not seem to have the magazine contents available for linking).

    Allegedly, Walmart engaged in a number of high-pressure tactics such as paying invoices late, and not in full. If a supplier would complain about not being paid in full, Walmart's response would be: well, do you want to continue doing business with us? The implicit threat was that Walmart would stop buying from that supplier, if it didn't give in and submit to the short-changing.

    Another focus of the article was Walmart's insistence on big quantities from suppliers, at ever-lower prices. This would cut into the supplier's profitability, and overall financial health.

    Case in point: Vlassic pickles, which filed for bankruptcy in 2001, after a distastrous adventure with a one-gallon jar of pickles specially for Walmart, and sold at retail for under $3. At that price, Vlassic wasn't making any money from these sales, and they were cannibalizing their other sales. Customers would buy this huge jar, put it in their fridge, and end out throwing much of it out months later. Meanwhile they wouldn't buy other Vlassic products which actually were profitable, and ended up with a bad taste, figuratively speaking, for throwing out stuff that went bad before they could finish it. Vlassic tried to alter the arrangement with Walmart, but Walmart pushed back with implied threats to stop buying from them altogether.

    Whether Vlassic's financial troubles were ultimately the fault of the gallon jar of pickles, or mismanagement, or other factors, has been discussed lots. But you can see how this kind of pressure for ever-increasing lots, at ever-decreasing prices, is bad news all around. Sooner or later the business model collapses upon itself.

    I learnd of all that from the Gourmet article, but you can google Walmart and Vlassic and find lots of discussion from this, which has become something of a case study.  Here's one.

    Walmart's existence is a giant "fuck you" to pretty much everybody.

    Hey Walmart: Fuck you.

    There's no such thing as a Free Information Kit. There is, however, advertising.

    by lotac on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:15:26 AM PST

    •  They do this to everyone. (7+ / 0-)

      It's not just volume pricing, it's monopoly power.  As the #1 retailer, most large brands have to be on their shelves.  To remain so, they have to play their game and more and more the big brands are pulling out.  I know of one such brand who basically said fine, we'll pull out and Walmart freaked out and accepted their terms.  But then they limited their shelf-space and claimed they couldn't get the merchandise on the shelves as it sat at the warehouse.   So said brand, having seen the writing on the wall, negotiated better deals with Target, Whole Foods, and regional stores.  Then they promptly pulled out of Walmart completely.

      As this gets around, which it will, I expect there will be many more companies following suit.

      America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

      by Back In Blue on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:25:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think your counter example... (0+ / 0-)

        ...shows that Walmart is not as much of a successful bully as many claim. The brand you refer decided not to do business with WM and seems to still be around. They simply decided to act rationally instead of be greedy and get burned (I'll bet they are greedy since the ever did business w/WM - they just didn't let their greed cloud their judgement and their analysis of what price they could supply product at and make an acceptable ROI).

        Yes, WM tries to extract the most for their dollar from suppliers -- but that's pretty traditional business. I can assure you that Amazon isn't much different or that most small businesses are much different with respect to their suppliers when they have multiple suppliers to choose from.

        Suppliers got greedy and wanted to get into WM (often pushing another supplier out in the process) at any cost. This is how they get in trouble and I have little sympathy for them. Of course WM doesn't care much about which brand of salt they carry if their customers don't, so if you supply salt, you need to either figure out how to do it efficiently and supply WM or decide not to do business with WM - you're never forced to do so.

        Even consumers generally act exactly the same way. All the gushing over Amazon up thread because they are inexpensive and offer "free shipping" fails to take into consideration that Amazon is losing money on some of those "free shipping" deals. Consumers, rightfully, figure that's Amazon's problem to figure out if it's really a problem and adjust accordingly.

        In any event, I wouldn't write Walmart off quite yet. They've stumbled a bit in recent years due to some stupid decisions such as reducing the number of SKUs (that was a disaster apparently and has been at least partially reversed, but the memory still lingers in consumer's minds).

        Their new CEO, McMillon, is an insider and knows the business well. He may turn things around (or may not - if I knew, I'd know to buy or to short WM!). They have plenty of reserves being, IIRC, the largest retailer in the world, the largest private employer in the world, and the second largest public corporation.

        •  Yes, it's capitalism after all. (0+ / 0-)

          Amazon will be raising the fee for Prime.  It will still be a deal.  Walmart will still be around, but other retailers (you know, competition) are gaining or recovering ground lost and newcomers are moving in.  This is all good for consumers.

          My only point was that most people do not understand how Walmart gets it's low prices. They think it's just cheap stuff made in China.  And yes, Walmart has (had?) monopoly power like no retailer in history.  The brand I was referring to could not have made the numbers work a few years ago.  It's not just greed, they had to be on Walmart's shelves or those product lines would be finished.  That's not the case anymore and I attribute it to Walmart's missteps in operations, public embarrassments, and shop local efforts by towns all over America.    

          What I want to know is what the impact of Amazon shipping direct to your door is on the environment vs. the traditional retail model.  

          America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

          by Back In Blue on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 07:20:29 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Perhaps a hybrid soln makes most sense. (0+ / 0-)
            What I want to know is what the impact of Amazon shipping direct to your door is on the environment vs. the traditional retail model.
            I've wondered the same thing.

            I expect that in the not too distant future most delivery in modestly dense areas will be to drop points (such as Amazon Lockers) and that actual home delivery will cost more (just as some shippers charge more for delivery to residential addresses than commercial addresses now). I expect that large employers and residential complexes will happily give up some space to lockers for the big carriers (UPS, FedEx, USPS(?)) and vendors (Amazon) to get their personnel out of the time consuming business of handling personal packages for employees and residents. As well, entities like grocery stores will accept lockers on their premises doing the calculation that it will get people used to coming to their store and some will start shopping there (and that even if some of their existing customers start buying some things on line instead of in the store, they will eventually do so anyway so it's best to get ahead of the curve).

            The drop point model should be much more cost effective (labor, fuel, vehicle maintenance/capital expense, etc -- esp. when "redeliveries" are counted) for the shipper. For those people who go out in their car almost every day or two, they will likely use a drop point that adds little to their trip mileage.

            The drop point model also avoids the problem of waiting around for a delivery you either need to sign for or don't want left on your front porch all day. It avoids the need for two humans space and time coordinates to intersect at all! This, for me, is actually the biggest impediment to online shopping.

            A well designed drop point model also avoids most of the "package left on doorstep and disappeared (or did the driver leave it the wrong place?)" issues.

            Of course, I've been predicting that we would move predominately to a drop point model in the next five years since the late 90's so my timing estimates are bad (although the concept seems to be slowly gathering real steam).

            •  Ha! and yes. (0+ / 0-)

              Kind of like predicting media convergence since 1996!

              Some kind of model change will be necessary.  My concern with drop points is crowding at rush hours (which will kill it fast) and security for light hours (what criminal wouldn't hang out until a big ticket item is picked up late at night?).

              It makes a ton of sense in urban environments. I once had a concept of drop points for trucking outside dense major metros like those on the coasts.  Big trucks would drop off at drop points outside the city and their cargo distributed to other modes of transportation (smaller trucks, rail, etc.) configured to best minimize delivery trucks in the city.  When I used to live in NYC, it made me insane to see a Pepsi truck double parked behind and Coke truck followed by a Poland Spring truck all delivering to the same grocery store.   Then they'd all leave the neighborhood even though there were a number of restaurants, deli's and another grocer two blocks down!  Guess they were all on their own schedules.  

              I will say one thing, if Amazon follows through with drone delivery there's going to be a lot of dead drones all over the country, especially in FL.

              America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

              by Back In Blue on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 06:19:54 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  The real problem with wal mart (5+ / 0-)

    is the only people who don't feel like assholes when they shop there are assholes.

    They can't compete with Amazon on price and you get to avoid going to/being at a wal mart by using Amazon.  Incentive enough.

    The food portion of wal mart is pretty much akin to a toxic dump site.  They ain't gonna compete against Trader Joe's much less Whole Foods and their prices aren't different from those of local supermarkets.  

    "So listen, oh, Don't wait." Vampire Weekend.

    by Publius2008 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:18:31 AM PST

    •  Regional grocer's are coming back and expanding (5+ / 0-)

      in my area.  Walmart not so much.  

      America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

      by Back In Blue on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:26:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think (0+ / 0-)

      it depends on where you live. Here in my area Wal-Mart's prices are not that great. My mother lives in a small town in SC and shops there all the time because she says the prices are better.


      It's the policy stupid

      by Ga6thDem on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:07:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Comparing... (0+ / 0-)

      ...Whole Paycheck and TJs to Walmart doesn't seem very useful.

      For brand name items in the area I live, Whole Paycheck can't touch Walmart pricing.

      TJ's doesn't carry hardly any brand names and offers very little selection (a typical supermarket carries about 50,000 distinct items where a TJs carries only about 4,000) so is in a completely different business. (Just for irrelevant comparison as a frame of reference, I believe a Walmart supercenter - grocery AND general merchandise - stocks around 150,000 distinct products).

      I do much of my grocery shopping at TJs, but their selection is too limited to do all of my weekly shopping there. The lack of name branding at TJs bothers me -- there are products that I have reliably bought there for years which silently change (a new provider, virtually the same package) and are no where near the quality of the previous incarnation. I've learned not to "stock up" at TJs after having tracked a product I loved through several supplier changes in a two year period -- and none ever came close to the original in quality (I have, however, become a master at recognizing subtle packing changes that alert me to a "switch-a-roo").

  •  Translation (6+ / 0-)
    To resonate with today's shopper, Wal-Mart needs to move its stores closer to major population centers, shrink the square footage of its superstores and shutter about 100 underperforming U.S. locations, they suggest.
    Translation: "Hey, Wal-Mart. Stop being Wal-Mart."

    There's a difference between a responsible gun owner and one that's been lucky so far.

    by BeerNotWar on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:23:10 AM PST

  •  Walton's...must...protect...100 billion (5+ / 0-)

    dollar...fortune. Now if only the minimum wage could be eliminated and employees use food stamps more (Oops!).

  •  In some cities, like here in Portland, Maine, (7+ / 0-)

    Walmart will not be welcome to purchase land in the city. We ban all big box stores. They are in Westbrook, or Scarborough, or South Portland, but not in Portland. I don't see that changing.

    We still have local businesses, Congress Street looks like an old-fashioned "Main Street" full of vibrant restaurants and local stores with a few in-State chains like Renys (a discount department store which is AWESOME) but no chain restaurants, and no big box stores.

    I shop local, and I think I speak for many Portlanders when I say we prefer it that way. The amount of gas it takes to get to Walmart makes up for the slightly higher cost of shopping in the City. I'll shop in the City, thank you.

    Pope Francis: the Thumb of Christ in the eyes of the Pharisees.

    by commonmass on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:26:30 AM PST

  •  I wonder if Mega-Churches will also fade away (7+ / 0-)

    due to similar location reasons.  They look like WalMarts and tend to be located in the same sort of places as WalMarts.  Big box churches (er, I mean, "worship centers") have got to be a fad with a sell-by date.

    Government works when you elect those who want it to. --askyron (2013)

    by Simul Iustus et Peccator on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:27:57 AM PST

  •  but their model was Big Box, Big Parking Lot. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, thanatokephaloides

    In Town,

    the parking sucks, and it's not inviting.

    in town, rents are higher, workers are pricier,
    and the consumers are pickier, plus shrinkage is higher.

    running a store in town with 2 employees will be a disaster.

  •  Maybe they should lobby against income (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, thanatokephaloides


    The world's largest retailer, which gets more than half its sales from groceries, on Thursday gave a disappointing full-year forecast. It blamed sharp cuts in food stamp benefits and higher payroll taxes that are will hit disposable income for its core customers. Wal-Mart shares fell 2.2 percent in morning trading.

    "Because I am a river to my people."

    by lordcopper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:37:22 AM PST

  •  During Sunday's Daytona 500 NASCAR race, WalMart (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, mrsgoo

    aired numerous "Buy America" image ads in which they stated their intention of investing / spending / diverting something on the order of $250BN over the next 10 years into goods manufactured in America.

    Because America™.

    These were ads fashioned along the lines of the polished, high-end car and beer ads one might see during a major sporting event (which, for NASCAR, the 500 certainly is), but I guess what hit me first was: "So, where has that money been going the past 10 years?

    Signature (this will be attached to your comments)

    by here4tehbeer on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:38:21 AM PST

    •  considering the demographic of most (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      NASCAR fans-walmart must be worried to advertise like that at the daytona 500

      •  According to the internets, many confused viewers (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        They couldn't be bothered to read the scroll at the bottom of the screen that Fox was showing a replay of the 2013 race during the rain delay. There were a ton of people who were live-tweeting the rerun as if it was live. That might be okay during the tape-delayed primetime Olympics coverage, but not so much with a race run a year ago.

    •  Those commercials kill me. Especially using the (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Caniac41, here4tehbeer

      tune Working Man by Rush (a Canadian band).

      if a habitat is flooded, the improvement for target fishes increases by an infinite percentage...because a habitat suitability index that is even a tiny fraction of 1 is still infinitely higher than zero, which is the suitability of dry land to fishes.

      by mrsgoo on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:03:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I Hope (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      it is true.  I mean, the owners and the corporation have a ton of money.  If what they are being told is "everybody hates you, try buying from American manufacturers for the next 10 years" then it would be great if they actually did so.

      Similar to Scrooge in A Christmas Carol - saw certain death with no one caring, changed his ways.
      Of course, it is all probably just a trick, but who knows?

      •  I hope it's true as well. However, the impression (0+ / 0-)

        I got from these ads was that America, it's manufacturing, and its economy, were all suffering primarily due to some unforeseen, untold, mystical external influence—and so Walmart was saddling up and riding to our rescue.

        Signature (this will be attached to your comments)

        by here4tehbeer on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:49:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Didn't WM do this once before? (0+ / 0-)

      The way I remember it, they slid away from that pretty fast.

  •  Don't shop at Wal*Mart (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dksbook, Powell, peptabysmal

    that's the first step.  So many people I talk to who complain about Wal*Mart have houses filled with junk from Wal*Mart.  Same goes for the rednecks around here who complain about "Chi-Com" products - yet love to shop at Wal*Mart.  

    Also, please don't vote for Wal*Mart interests.  That includes former members of Wal*Mart's board of directors.  

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:38:59 AM PST

  •  The logical result of grow or die... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dksbook, Powell

    This is the short shortsightedness of capitalism. Growth at any cost is sure to fail. It takes nuanced and intelligent management to maintain a profitable business through the good and bad. Walmart has and always will be doomed to fail as long as it has top line growth at the expense of employees and communities as its business model.

    Good riddance

    -7.5 -7.28, A carrot is as close as a rabbit gets to a diamond.-Don Van Vliet

    by Blueslide on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:42:05 AM PST

  •  of course people can't afford to drive to WalMart (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, peptabysmal

    After Walmart and its conservative allies have destroyed and hollowed out the American middle and working classes for decades now, how can they afford to go to the middle of nowhere to buy cheap chinese-made stuff?

    To be great is to be misunderstood

    by LordFairfax on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:42:12 AM PST

  •  Would you believe (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    some people have never entered a WalMart?

    Some people are just not into having stuff.

  •  Sometimes, I don't know whether...... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Powell, Vetwife

    to laugh or to cry.  This is one of those times...........color me in dis-pear.....

    I have not put money into wally world since they decimated my grandmothers home town.  Drove all businesses out of business and the only place to get a job was you know where....

    "A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered." Ralph Waldo Emerson

    by Yo Bubba on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:42:59 AM PST

  •  the predictions of Walmart's demise or decline (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    always make me laugh as they are always exaggerated. Walmart's stock is up almost 1% right now incidentally. And 5% up from last year.

    Are things really looking tough for them? It depends on what you think of Walmart. Very little unbiased reporting going on.

  •  I just refuse to shop at Walmart. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    My ex would waste hundreds at Wal Mart every month buying junk like some kind of zombie never satisfied and always moaning for moat 'brains'.

    I've been in Wal Mart 3 times in the 9 years since I got her out of the house.

    1. The night she moved out.
    2. Once with my mother before she passed to help her with her shopping.
    3. And once when I needed household items that could not wait and had absolutely nowhere else to go (still annoying but I bit the bullet since friends were helping me with some stuff).

    I thought it better to compromise once and make sure my friends were rewarded for the help they freely offered to me than to stand on principle and inconvenience people who are being helpful just because...

    I won't give Wal Mart my time by looking through their stores. I absolutely will not give them my money if I can help it. Starve the beast one shopper at a time.

    If you're a regular shopper, start small and starve the beast one store visit at a time.

    -6.38, -6.21: Lamented and assured to the lights and towns below, Faster than the speed of sound, Faster than we thought we'd go, Beneath the sound of hope...

    by Vayle on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:59:04 AM PST

    •  This! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Vayle, WisJohn
      Starve the beast one shopper at a time.
      Righteous rant.  I haven't stepped into a Wal Mart for probably 6-7 years and I don't miss it a bit.  We needed a new microwave at work.  The boss was going to go to Wal Mart to get it and we all yelled NO.  Go anywhere else but Wal Mart. . . . and he did!
  •  There is actually (0+ / 0-)

    an untapped market for Wal-Mart that I have experienced. Some parts of some cities have nowhere for residents to shop that is close. We stopped at one in Charlotte where there were no other stores around and it was packed.

    It's the policy stupid

    by Ga6thDem on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 11:59:57 AM PST

  •  What I want to know (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tardis10, Mr Robert

    about WM - all the ads they ran during the Olympics touting $250 Billion investment in products manufactured in the US of A in the next 10 years - are these going to be WM exclusive or will the manufacturer be able to sell their products to any store that wants to sell them.  If they will be WM exclusive products - that would suck for the manufacturer - WM will be able to tell them what to make, how to make it and what they would be willing to pay for it.. meaning that these will NOT be UNION SHOPS making their products.  But that is just my guess.

    Why do Republicans Hate Americans?

    by Caniac41 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:00:58 PM PST

  •  They're trying to build two new super centers in (0+ / 0-)

    My county. The one closest to me has been in an old Kmart location for about twenty years but it has a limited grocery section, at least they did the last time I was there ten years ago. There's a Kroger across the street that seems to do good business, so all of the sudden they decide to build a super center near by, which the city councilman for our district tried to stop as well as the residents that live behind the new location. It didn't work, but I'm praying that the
    Kroger doesn't suffer for it. I have no intention of shopping there.

    The other one is going to be built in some cotton field off the main highway to Tennessee and the nearby residents are worried about potential traffic problems, but it's still going to be built. God, I hate fucking Walmart.

  •  Too F'ing bad Walton Family (0+ / 0-)

    Should have thought of a better business model that didn't just line your pockets and Bentonville AR bank accounts.

    I am happy to read this stuff.

  •  I am one of the few. I do not shop Walmart. I (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Caniac41, schnecke21

    support local business. I don't mind spending a bit more to keep business local.

  •  This part of community development pisses me off. (0+ / 0-)

    Unfortunately, the joke's ultimately on us, or at least our local governments. The big box development model -- build on cheap land on the edge of the community with taxpayers subsidizing your hard infrastructure/transportation costs, tilting the competitive landscape in your favor in the process -- is designed to be transitory. These buildings are, unlike the miles of public pipe and asphalt that serve them, quite disposable.

    I would LOVE it, if some enterprising state or local government would write a reclamation clause into their tax abatement contracts with corporations demanding "welfare" from taxpayers to build their businesses in communities.

    If I were a county commissioner or city mayor I would incorporate reclamation into any development agreement.

    •  At best unenforceable, if not unconstitutional (0+ / 0-)

      Art 1 Sec 10, Clause 1:

      No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility
      (emboldened for emphasis)

      If the state signed a contract with those people, they can not pass a bill to retroactively alter contractual or tax status that existed before the law was passed (ex post facto) nor can it pass a law freely allowing the state to just reverse a contract that it entered into with private sector entities (see United States Tust Co. vs New Jersey)

      I like the concept, but that is on more than shaky ground legally.

      Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

      by Wisper on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:41:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks, but I am not saying retroactively (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tardis10, Mr Robert

        try to enforce a law.  Reclamation language should be in the initial contract before ANY discussions about tax abatement and the sharing of infrastructure costs begin.

        This is a going forward idea that I believe smart state, country and city officials should be considering.

  •  i have refused to buy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    at walmart for over 25 years and its nice to see others are starting to see that saving a few dollars is short sighted and a cancer to the mom & pop businesses in america who we all would be better served if they were still the staple of our economic day to day lives.

    there aren't many small mom & pops left in my area but when i can i give them all my business unless its not feasible, regardless i never shop at walmart under any circumstances.

    walmart and their anti union anti worker agenda have dug their own grave and seeing them pay the price is ironic to say the least.

  •  Walmart's been putting itself out of business (0+ / 0-)

    for years.  First they sent their customer's jobs overseas when they demanded US factories produce them goods at such low prices they were forced to produced them in Asia instead of the US.  Then they worked to keep wages low, so their customer's that do have jobs don't make enough money to buy anything.  Good job Walmart!

  •  Walmart (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    You don't hear about the 2 reasons why I quit going to WW.  They were one of the first to go to China for labor, while advertising USA.  And the awful treatment of their employees and anti union.

  •  I don't care what unfortunates work at Walmarsh.. (0+ / 0-)

    But I will not shop there. Our unfortunates are already getting welfare because of the poor working conditions at Walmarsh. This is the time when they can jump ship as much as possible.

    I will not shop at Walmarsh and I will take every opportunity to mock them, deride them and generally do what I can to see them destroyed (legally and finally).

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Randian Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of West Dakota!"

    by unclebucky on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:51:36 PM PST

  •  Too Many Walmarts in my town. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I live in a moderately sized town in Washington State with a population of about 63,000.  Within our town, we have 3 Walmart Superstores, all within 5-10 miles of each other.
    It is the most asinine thing.  One Walmart would be bad enough, as we have plenty of other options to choose from to shop and spend money at (Fred Meyer, Target, Big Lots, K-Mart, etc).  But we have 3 of them.  The biggest waste of money and valuable land.  So many other stores could have been built.  Mind you, this is a fairly Liberal State, which I prefer, but somehow the few Republicans we do have seem to get these things built where nobody wants them or needs them.  How they all stay in business is a total mystery to me.

    •  Well, Kos says in his diary that they may be on (0+ / 0-)

      their demise. Being that a formula for good retail performance is having strong sales per square foot. And apparently Walmart has too many stores that are too big box for its sales potential.

      Oops. Big error. Stay tuned.

      But, thank you for your first comment and good example of too many take-over stores too close to one another.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      • Follow Connect! Unite! Act! for Kossack event info • Follow Native American Netroots for American Indian History and News

      by navajo on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:16:50 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  For the past decade, or since the (0+ / 0-)

    Turn of the Century, WalMart has pretty much been getting it in both ears, from all sectors of society. The rise of the internet, shall we say, hasn't helped the beast. A few years back, I had cause to sit in on a service at an evangelical Protestant church, the kind of place with Billy Graham books on the literature table. And this young minister was bashing WalMart from the pulpit, as an aside to his sermon, in an everyone-already-knows-this-place-totally-stinks tone.

    You know, then, WalMart's brand is pretty tarnished.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 12:55:21 PM PST

  •  Did anyone think the 1% shopped there?? (0+ / 0-)

    Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. Frank Zappa

    by Da Rock on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:04:21 PM PST

  •  there are two super Walmarts within 5 miles (0+ / 0-)

    of my house, along with a Sam's Club by one of them.  They wanted to build a 3rd which also would have been within 5-6 miles in a different direction, but it would have infringed on a nature preserve park and it got voted down by the city, thank goodness. So instead they built a Walmart "neighborhood" version up the road from there.

    I hate going anywhere near the supercenters, the traffic is ridiculous.

    "Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal..."-7.75, -5.54

    by solesse413 on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:08:26 PM PST

  •  I lived in an anomalous city apparently (0+ / 0-)

    Where Walmart was EVERYWHERE. Down the street? Walmart. On a major highway through town? Four walmarts. Besides all the ones on the outskirts of town.

    I was actually surprised when I moved to see how hard it is to get to walmart in my new city.

    by DAISHI on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 01:17:50 PM PST

  •  Wal-Mart remodeled their store near us. Now, no (0+ / 0-)

    one can find anything.  it's the worst case of store design you've ever imagined. I rarely shopped there before and now try to avoid going there at all costs.  On my final visit to the store, I had a particular product I was supposed to have for a project which a friend told me she found at Wal-Mart. I looked and looked for the product, then asked three different people who were stocking shelves.  None of them actually worked for Wal-Mart but were vendors putting in their own stuff. I thought I might find a clerk a check-out who might direct me to the needed product, When I went to check out with a small tube of another product I was told that I MUST check out through automatic cashier since I only had one item.  NO one ever asked, "Did you find what you were looking for". That was my last visit to Wal-Mart. I won't be back.

  •  Or maybe.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    people are learning more about them and deciding not to shop there anymore. I haven't been in one in years, and will never go back.

    •  Why do any of you shop at Wal-Mart? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Unless you are out in the county and have no other choice, why would anyone choose to shop at Wal-Mart? Their prices are not lower. I live in a major city on the East Coast. Comparing food prices at Kroger to Wal-Mart, I always come out cheaper at Kroger. They have more variety, carry more brands and the produce and meats are superior in quality. As for other goods my personal experience is that Target (who gives 5% of local profits back to the community) while sometimes is a little bit more expensive, the quality is far superior. Ultimately cheaper goods cost more because they must be replace more often.
      For anyone who has not seen the movie on Netflix or Amazon Prime, I highly recommend you see it before you go into Wal-Mart again. The move is called "Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Prices". After seeing it several years ago,  I haven't been in a Wal-Mart in years.

      •  ...if you live in an area with a decent... (0+ / 0-)

        ...population then what you are saying is right. If you live in a more rural area, which I do, believe it or not driving 40 minutes to get to the closest WalMart does save folks tons of money on stuff compared to the small mom and pop stores. The WalMart closest to us has no food sales however...

        Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

        Ignorance is bliss only for the ignorant. The rest of us must suffer the consequences. -7.38; -3.44

        by paradise50 on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 08:17:01 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Many reasons not to shop there (0+ / 0-)

      I like this diary because it details the actual metrics that will take them down. Not just a YELP popularity contest.

      But it sounds like you made your decision by being well read. Kudos. I never shop there either.

      Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

      • Follow Connect! Unite! Act! for Kossack event info • Follow Native American Netroots for American Indian History and News

      by navajo on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:36:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  $$ General + smaller-footprint neighborhood market (0+ / 0-)

    Dollar General are popping up everywhere in the South. Very effective in the rural areas too.

    "You are what you write, not what you look like."

    by PHScott on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 02:41:55 PM PST

  •  I wonder if Wal Mart realizes that many of its (0+ / 0-)

    customers, for food and everything else are its own employees, and that if they paid them more so that they could buy more Wal Mart Food, it would help Wal Mart's cash flow.

  •  good riddance (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Their stocking system sucks, they don't keep enough cashiers in the store, underpay their "associates" (how much money does this family need, anyhow?) and they stock the lowest common denominator of everything. If they ever get some good healthy food on their shelves, you can guarantee it'll disappear and be replaced by more junk.

  •  Low quality goods (0+ / 0-)

    and long drives... not to mention the shabby condition of some of the stores. You can find spoiled produce on the shelves too. I stay away, always.

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 06:29:07 AM PST

  •  It isn't just about gas costs & food stamp cuts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Many, like me, have refused to go to Walmart because of their politics and policies.

    The tide is turning against all the greedy assholes - this is the free market at work.

  •  it was last Thanksgiving (0+ / 0-)

    that made the boycott decision for lots of former customers. The hellmart store that was actually asking shoppers to donate food for their employees was the last straw.

    Also revealed at the same time was the shocking fact that the big WM superstores cost taxpayers millions of dollars a year in safety net programs to supplement the meager wages paid to walmartians.

    take with one hand and take with the other, too - that's the hellmart way.

    "Please proceed, Governor"

    by portlandzoo on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 09:31:36 AM PST

  •  The astronomical rise in the cost of (0+ / 0-)

    telecommunications might have something to do with a drop in sales . It has certainly impacted my disposable income.

    This "Trickle Down" thing has turned out to be somebody pissing on my leg and tellin' me it's rainin'.

    by swtexas on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 10:37:39 AM PST

  •  Is Wal Mart good for America??? (0+ / 0-)

    Maybe we have finally gotten to the point where Americans have started to realize that Wal Mart isn't good for America.

    Frontline asked this question a long time ago but not enough people were paying attention.

  •  This is good news for America (0+ / 0-)

    Anything that is bad for Walmart is good for the USA and the world.  The sooner this despicable criminal enterprise is driven out of business, the better.  I hope it is also having problems overseas.  Such scurrilous scumbags.  A curse on their House.

  •  WallyWorld (0+ / 0-)

     I never shop WallyWorld!  Stores are not kept up, parking lots dirty, etc.!  I also won't shop there because of their pay stragedy among other things!

  •  walmart forgot (0+ / 0-)

    what its founder beleived.
    There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.

    Sam Walton

  •  Not to mention (0+ / 0-)

    learning that we're paying for WalMart employees' healthcare by them not being able to support themselves based on low wages.  And those low wages being the reason so many of WM's own employees needed to be on food stamps!  Turned shoppers off.  The end of the great hoodwinking...

  •  The 2 major malls in my area had more to do with (0+ / 0-)

    shuttering downtown businesses than did Walmart.  

  •  Die You Wretched Undead, Die (0+ / 0-)

    Couldn't happen to a more deserving company.

  •  "Moving out" and leaving behind ???? (0+ / 0-)

    It is not just the asphalt and mega store left behind if Walmart closes a 100 or so non-performing stores is small towns.  They leave towns now empty of small grocery stores, or any retail stores for goods that Walmart undercut with their low priced goods.  (And on the backs of part time, poorly paid, local employees, who will now have no jobs.)  

    It is also not the case that those towns have a lot of "consumables" so widely distributed.  

    Not every large store was located outside a large city.

  •  All I know is, (0+ / 0-)
    I don't want to die in a Walmart!
  •  Shopping at Walmart (0+ / 0-)

    is like working class people voting Republican, it just isn't in  your best interest. Sure they lure you in with those nice prices, but look what pays for those nice prices as that Walmart family becomes ever more wealthy off your hare earned, under paid salaries.

    Come the revolution, Madam Defarge will knit away as the 1st tumbril passes by with this family in the lead.

  •  There is another mart (0+ / 0-)

    three minutes farther away in the other direction from my home. Its my own little war on Walmart, but I will continue spending my money at the other Mart until Walmart raises its employees wages to the point my taxes are not needed to subsidize the welfare stamps that are needed by Walmart's employees to live on. Like I said, its all I have to work with. The buying power of my money in the economy, and as far as I'm concerned, the billionaires at Walmart lose this one.

  •  first shop where you live (0+ / 0-)

    There is a Walmart & Sam's Club next door to each other about 4 miles from me. I don't go there b/c they treat their employees like indentured servants, the merchandise is shoddy, the store is not clean, etc. At least that's what I saw some years ago. Heck, I don't even go to large drugstore chains like Walgreens. I do all my drugstore business, including pharmacy, at our local drugstore, which has been in the city for over 120 years. It's not more expensive at all. When businesses in a community shut down for lack of customers, the town suffers, & so do the schools, & so does the value of your house.

  •  You'd never know it from my city... (0+ / 0-)

    We have half a dozen Supercenters in town and at least 1-2 more within 15 miles plus 3-4 "Neighborhood Markets" (and more on the way.

    Around here, WM has captured over 50% of the grocery business, and has significant presence in nearly every other business sector in retailing, including banking (Arvest).

    I try not to shop there more than I absolutely must, but some items I can only afford if I do shop there (like my insulin, which is 1/3 the next nearest price).

  •  Regressive economy (0+ / 0-)

    Wal-Mart has low prices and won't pay workers a decent wage and they can't even afford to shop at Wal-Mart. Maybe Wal-Mart should open a few stores in China where they get all the products. The more jobs sent off shore or out sourced the fewer who have jobs with disposable income for shopping. The fewer shoppers means lower sales and the less sales means lower profits to trickle up. I guess billionaires aren't so smart after all.

  •  Business model an anachronism? (0+ / 0-)

    Walmart once bought a German supermarket chain. They tried to crush the unions and introduce the US style of business. Though the Germans copy almost any stupidity from the US they did not let Walmart change their working life. So Walmart pulled out of a big market.
    Isn't it funny that Germany has a much lower unemployment rate than the US despite the higher wages?

  •  I foresaw this coming. (0+ / 0-)

    Walmart entirely depends on their central warehouses and their semi fleet for store delivery and warehouse supply.
    All the big box stores depend on this as well.

    Their whole strategy in turn depended on the public continuing to buy vehicles large enough to haul off all the goods. It's all built on the 'stock up big, once a month' proposition that ruled for so long.

    I saw the light in 2007, when the gas prices suddenly spiked through the roof. Here, pickup trucks are as common as cars, and more common than small cars. Folks around town cried the blues when they filled up their gas tanks, and many guys began using Mom's smaller car, bought to get around town only, as their main means of getting to work or other stuff.

    I knew then that it was only a matter of time when the gasoline prices would reach that spike's prices again and stay there. It only took a few years.

    Now, with all the other prices of energy creeping upwards steadily, the 21st century paradigms of living will surely change.
    Everything in the last half of the 20th century became overly dependent on the car, and it's ability to cart us everywhere cheaply as a first, basic requirement for where we chose to live, how our civic and commercial buildings were developed, our cities expanded or contracted, and how we live our day to day lives.

    There is always an apex in the way we live that is in place just before a huge change begins. I understood that a long time ago, when I helped restore a horse-drawn doctor's cutter, a small enclosed sleigh, that was built in 1915.
    The cutter was a perfect winter vehicle for the last of the horse-drawn period, when horses, not automobiles, were still the largest and most reliable form of transportation.

    It weighed less than 90 lbs, was very stable, well insulated, and had  excellent headlamps and a heater that were powered by acetylene gas.

    Drawn by a good horse with proper winter shoes, even in 1987 it was a faster means of transportation on icy streets than a modern 4WD vehicle, and much safer, as long as the horse had good shoe traction.

    I know this because the owner took me for a ride around town after it was finished. His horse was easily able to keep up with traffic after an icy winter storm, and never skidded to a stop at an intersection. And since the horse also had eyes, we could see through falling snow better than the automobile drivers- none of us or the horse had a windshield impairing our view, and I was as warm and snug as ever in a car.

    The company that made it had made American carriages for over 110 years by then. The cutter was the last year they made carriages; by 1916, they began making bodies for the Ford Motor Co.

    We're already changing to a different way. Walmart and the other Big Boxes will become a relic of their time within a couple of decades at most, I believe.

    Right many are called, and damn few are chosen.

    by Idaho07 on Tue Feb 25, 2014 at 08:25:26 PM PST

  •  Please don't give them any ideas! (0+ / 0-)

    Please don't give Walmart any ideas!  The LAST thing we need in downtown areas are huge, giant Walmart's and their parking lots!  We have enough urban blight as it is!

  •  UNIONIZE WALMART (0+ / 0-)

    Why are the fools who work for Walmart slogging through each workday, doing nothing to better themselves, when they could organize and unionize? I suppose you just can't fix stupid.

  •  Urban centers are (mostly) fine without Walmart (0+ / 0-)

    except for the food deserts. That might be the only niche that isn't already at market saturation. Plus, Target is already way ahead of Walmart on urban planning. By like, 3 years at least. They have already built several low square footage, urban stores and have realized that A) young people are flocking to the cities and don't like to drive, and this isn't going to change and B) mixed used buildings are the future, so they are building stores in mixed apartment/retail spaces. Perfect example is the Dinkytown location Target is building near the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. It's perfect, there is nothing meeting the demand of 10,000+ college and grad students (plus other faculty and university employees) in the area. Walmart is late to the game and urbanites already hate it - that's one of the reasons why we don't live in the burbs!

    If Walmart builds a store in North Minneapolis (the most economically deprived area in Minneapolis, which retailers have been avoiding for the past 30 years), that is the only place I see them having any success. Too many people have to rely on gas station food there. But the rest of the city has long-standing, local options and we know the owners in many cases. We have no reason to switch. And there's no advantage to going to one place for everything because, being in an urban center, the individual stores are already as close to each other as they would be inside a Walmart building anyway!

    Is fheàrr fheuchainn na bhith san dùil

    by bull8807 on Wed Feb 26, 2014 at 07:13:22 AM PST

  •  Transit (0+ / 0-)

    In Charleston, SC Walmart has been able to draw strong connections to the public transit system.  It's a major destination for transit riders, but hauling groceries home on the bus is a challenge.  The Transit agency has had to restrict the amount of baggage riders can bring on board with them.

    Walmart killed off the shopping centers in North Charleston, which took the grocery stores down with them.

    To their credit, Walmart has been pretty good about having decent stops near their stores in most locations.  It's often easier to ride ten miles on the bus and wait in somewhere out of the rain than to drag a wheeled shopping cart a mile and a half over broken sidewalks and through crime ridden areas to an overpriced convenience store.

    We see people on the bus, riding home after shopping at Wal-Mart with their kids at 9 pm at night, everyone carrying bags.  They've worked all day, picked up the children at their grand parents and great grandparents homes and are finally on the way home.

    This is the nation which landed on the Moon when I was nine years old.  A nation I was proud of, where I bought Craftsmen tools made in America at Sears.  A nation I trusted and believed in, where people and work were valued.

    William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through

    by wjhamilton29464 on Wed Feb 26, 2014 at 07:39:11 AM PST

  •  WalMart (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    As far as I'm concerned WalMart is a cancer.  For them to be complaining that cuts in food stamps is effecting their bottom line is laughable.  They as was mentioned pay their employees very little and they are forced into food stamp programs to survive and are even encouraged to seek safety nets paid for by the American taxpayer.  This is the face of WalMart and they need to be slapped around and put in their place once and for all.  If this is what the future holds for consumers we're in deep dodo.  I personally have never and will never shop at WalMart and I encourage my friends not to either.

  •  Boycotts too (0+ / 0-)

    I guess those of us who refuse to buy there until they treat their employees like actual breathing, eating human beings are having no impact? Well, whatever. They created a class that sought cheap goods, reinforced the need for cheap goods by underpaying their employees, and now have created a class that cannot even afford their cheap goods. The downward spiral should end with the Waltons on food stamps and no place to go.

  •  The Walton Family's greed... (0+ / 0-)

    is coming back to haunt them.

    I live a few miles outside a fairly small city which has had a WalMart for several years now.

    The damn place is rotting. It is dirty, poorly stocked, and the employee culture is ridiculous.

    I hardly ever go there any more, and neither do most of my friends, neighbors and associates.

    We have found that with a little planning, we can find everything we need at other nearby stores.

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