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Ahh, Those Corporate SOBs

Thomas Sowell examines Hollywood's curious hatred of corporate America:

The Los Angeles Times refers to documentary "films" that are "critical of corporate power." But just what does this vague word "power" mean when it comes to businesses?

Wal-Mart is the big bugaboo these days but what "power" does Wal-Mart have? I lived three-quarters of a century without ever setting foot in a Wal-Mart store and there is not a thing they can do about it.

It so happened that this past summer in Page, Arizona, I needed to buy some toiletries, which caused me to go into a nearby Wal-Mart for the first time. Inside, it looked more like a small city than a large store. But the prices were noticeably lower than in most other places. Is that the much-dreaded "power"?

Apparently Wal-Mart does not pay its employees as much as third-party observers would like to see them paid. But obviously it is not paying them less than their work is worth to other employers or they probably would not be working at Wal-Mart. Moreover, third parties who wax indignant are paying them nothing.

I've worked for corporate America for much of my adult life. I do so because they tend to pay better, tend to be better run and thus more secure, and offer diverse experiences which lead to growth.

I've worked for small businesses in the past, and there's simply no comparison at all when it comes to determining the better working experience. Unless you own your own business, you're probably better off economically working in the Fortune 500.


Anonymous Martin said...

I can almost guarantee you that a person who works as a checker/cashier, stocker, food preparation, or maintenance worker at a small mom & pop retail store will make the same or less than they would at Wal-Mart or Target.

While I understand the mom and pop store disliking Wal-Mart, and how some vendors get squeezed by them ... I don't get the demonization by the Democrats (as opposed to say Target, Lowes, or the other big boys) . I guess it's a United Food and Commercial Workers and the Teamsters union thing.

10:47 AM  
Blogger Teflon said...

In a past job I was a supplier to Wal-Mart. They are very, very demanding, chiefly because they pride themselves on offering the best quality at the lowest prices.

They may not have been real popular with us as a result, but we scrambled to get product into their stores anyway, because despite the lower margins they moved such huge numbers of units they were guaranteed to be one of our top revenue-producers.

It's pretty sad that Americans of all people so dislike success, but it's also been a facet of our character since at least the late 19th century and all the nonsense about the "robber barons".

Build a better mousetrap, and somebody will say it's not good enough and should have been made by union labor at negative profit.

2:21 PM  

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