The anti-Walmart protests today organized by the United Food and Commercial Workers union are the clearest evidence yet that the company’s campaign of appeasement of left-wing activist groups is failing. Indeed, it appears the policy has invited more defamation and harassment. We told you so.
NLPC documented the emergence of this policy in a Special Report titled Wal-Mart Embraces Controversial Causes: Bid to Appease Liberal Interest Groups Will Likely Fail, Hurt Business. Written by John Carlisle, it was published in 2006 and updated in 2008. Click here to download the 24-page pdf version.
The Report details Walmart’s journey from a company that embodied Sam Walton’s bedrock values to a powerful instrument for liberal policy, culminating in Walmart’s support for ObamaCare and cap & trade legislation.
Our warnings to the company have been ignored. I took our message directly to the Walmart annual meeting in 2011. Here is a part …
In an unsurprising, capitulatory move last week, Walmart joined several other major companies and withdrew its membership from the American Legislative Exchange Council, which advances the principles of free markets and limited government at the state level through legislative idea exchanges.
The move preceded Friday’s annual shareholder meeting, in which executives emphasized their commitment to principles of integrity. That came into question especially since April, when the New York Times revealed that company officials authorized millions of dollars in bribes in order to expedite building permits and other favors in Mexico.
A number of investors and pension funds attempted to remove some Walmart directors from the board, including CEO Mike Duke (in picture), former CEO Lee Scott, and S. Robson “Rob” Walton, son of company founder Sam Walton. Because the family holds nearly 50 percent of stock in the company, proposals they don’t support will always fail …
No matter how much Walmart officials pander to liberals and their institutions, or how much they implement alternative energy gimmicks, or how much they earn fawning media attention for “corporate responsibility” and “sustainability” gestures, a giant segment of the political Left will still resent the retail giant.
Still, the descendants of Sam Walton and company executives try. Last week CEO of Walmart International, Doug McMillon, made the now-familiar pitch at the liberal Brookings Institution in Washington. Not surprisingly, rather than emphasize Walmart’s historical approach to business (before 2005) – which espoused low costs due to bulk purchasing and supply chain hyper-efficiency – and how that has improved the lives of millions of people with limited incomes, McMillon instead highlighted the company’s “social impact.” His drivel was likely welcomed by the elitist Beltway audience.
Sadly, as Walmart expands globally, the Third World that hungers for freedom and economic development desperately …
Recently a guy who is trying to sell a book about Wal-Mart’s supposed “Green” heroism, Edward Humes, has written in various places about the giant retailer’s eco-friendly innovations and efficiencies. The tone has been, “Hey, believe it or not, this mass merchant practices sustainability!”
For example, in an op-ed last week for the Los Angeles Times, he wrote:
This isn’t Al Gore saying green is good for the economy; it’s Wal-Mart, which puts the discussion in a very different place. Yet progressives so revile the retailer, and the idea of a greener Wal-Mart generates so much skepticism among environmentalist organizations and their donors, that they have failed to capitalize on this golden opportunity to push through a green agenda for America. They’d rather lose the battle, it seems, than say something positive about their traditional enemy, even though Wal-Mart is using its vast scale and power to
Here are my remarks delivered today at the Walmart annual meeting in Fayetteville, Arkansas in favor of our shareholder proposal that asks for a report on the business risks of climate change:
Mr. Duke, I have some good news for you. You can stop worrying about global warming. The seas are not rising. The sky is not falling. And Al Gore has found a new role – as that crazed sex poodle.
During the elections last year, the American people spoke. Voters chose economic growth over pseudo-science and environmental alarmism. As a result, cap and trade legislation supported by Walmart is dead, and may be forever.
Cap and Trade was never about global warming. Instead it’s about politicians imposing a command economy on us, and raising taxes in order to enhance their own power.
Wal-Mart supported ObamaCare, too, which was never about health care. And it is even more unpopular …
Suddenly at odds with public opinion on Barack Obama’s proposals on health care and global warming, Wal-Mart is seeking to exclude from its proxy our shareholder proposal that asks for a report on the company’s lobbying priorities. As we noted in the supporting statement, Wal-Mart favors these proposals that will dramatically raise the cost of living for its customers, at the same time it has taken a lower profile on issues like tort reform that would benefit its customers, not to mention the company and its shareholders.
As we documented in our Special Report titled Wal-Mart Embraces Controversial Causes: Bid to Appease Liberal Interest Groups Will Likely Fail, Hurt Business, the company’s management has steered the company to the political Left under the guidance of Edelman public relations firm. With the public now turning against the very ideas that Edelman counseled Wal-Mart to embrace, it is no surprise that …
In a June 30 letter to the White House, Wal-Mart endorsed Obama’s health care plan. The letter was jointly signed by Andrew Stern, boss of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and John Podesta, who led the Obama transition team and is chief executive of the Soros-funded Center for American Progress.
Although the move was unexpected to some, it was no surprise to NLPC. In a Special Report published in 2006 and updated in 2008, I chronicled the company’s move to the Left in a futile campaign to placate liberal critics like Wal-Mart Watch, funded by SEIU. On major issues except for “card check,” Wal-Mart has become a powerful tool of liberal activist groups.
Obama’s plan includes an employer mandate to vastly increase government control over health care ostensibly to provide coverage to 46 million uninsured Americans. Wal-Mart’s support represents a betrayal of the large segment of …
Published in 2006 and updated in 2008, “Wal-Mart Embraces Controversial Causes: Bid to Appease Liberal Interest Groups Will Likely Fail, Hurt Business” was written by NLPC Director of Policy John Carlisle. Click here or its cover to the right to download the 24-page pdf version.
The Report details Wal-Mart’s journey from a company that embodied Sam Walton’s bedrock values to a powerful instrument of the political Left. The premise of the Report, that Wal-Mart cannot successfully satisfy anti-business activists, has been confirmed during the current fight over the so-called Employee Free Choice Act. Union-funded activists continue to harass and smear the company for its opposition to “card check.”
The Report has gotten noticed. Carlisle was a guest on Neil Cavuto’s show on the Fox News Channel on February 9, 2007, apparently prompting an appearance on the same show by then-Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott to respond. The June 9, …