Home > General Discussion > Hey Walmart – If DC doesn't want you, we'll take you!

Hey Walmart – If DC doesn't want you, we'll take you!
  • John Fontain July 11, 2013 - 9:40 am #79546 Reply

    Dear Walmart,

    I don’t understand why DC would court you and then attempt to extort you at the last minute.  How rude!  At any rate, if they don’t want you, we’ll take you over here in Arlington.

    I’ve seen the urban format store designs you planned for the district.  They look good.  And while Arlington County has a very high median household income that will ensure plenty of business for a store you build here, we’ve also got many lower income folks who could really stand to benefit from your purchasing power.  Several hundred jobs and much lower prices on everday consumables and groceries?  We’ll take ‘em!

    Personally, I’d like nothing more than to have the best purchasing agent working on my behalf.  And I’d be happy to get my spending here in Arlington rather than constantly burning gas and clogging the roads to drive to the big box stores in Fairfax to do my shopping.

    Walmart, I know you were at one time considering a store in a run-down and practically abandoned area in Shirlington.  With DC’s recent extortion attempt, I hope you’ll reconsider giving Arlington another look.


    John Fontain

    Dezlboy July 11, 2013 - 10:00 am #79553 Reply

    John, I would much rather see more Costcos. Unlike Walmart, Costco offers decent wages, health benefits, etc. Costco is often leading the lists of best companies, best employers while offering similar customer prices.  Also Costco is not an union buster

    CourthouseChris July 11, 2013 - 10:11 am #79555 Reply

    Dear Walmart,

    Go F yourself.

    No Thanks,
    Walmart free for nearly a decade

    As dezlboy rightfully pointed out, Costco is an excellent example of how you don’t have to screw over your employees to do well in business.

    jackson July 11, 2013 - 10:12 am #79556 Reply

    Several hundred jobs created, yet the workers will still be on some sort of government (taxpayer-funded) assistance due to low wages and health benefits.

    Anonymous July 11, 2013 - 10:13 am #79557 Reply

    Dear Walmart,

    John Fontain speaks only for himself.


    The Rest of Arlington


    Anonymous July 11, 2013 - 10:19 am #79558 Reply

    jackson, you’re right. I found this study looking at how much Walmart employees cost the taxpayers in California alone:

    “California taxpayers are spending $86 million a year providing healthcare and other public assistance to the state's 44,000 Wal-Mart employees, according to a new study by UC Berkeley's Institute for Industrial Relations.

    The study, "Hidden Cost of Wal-Mart Jobs," found that the average Wal-Mart worker required $730 in taxpayer-funded healthcare and $1,222 in other forms of assistance, such as food stamps and subsidized housing, to get by.

    Even compared to other retailers, Wal-Mart imposes an especially large burden on taxpayers. Wal-Mart workers earn 31 percent less than the average for workers at large retail companies (more than 1,000 employees), the study found, and require 39 percent more in public assistance.”


    You’ll probably hear people who oppose the living wage whine about “socialism” but letting taxpayers prop up your employees is alot more socialist. It makes the discount prices at Walmart alot smaller when you add the tax burden too.


    jackson July 11, 2013 - 10:24 am #79559 Reply

    There’s a reason Walmart is doing those nationwide commercials with some employee saying, “I hope when people look at me, they see someone reaching his potential…” The unspoken part being, “and not someone who has a job but still needs food stamps to feed his family.”



    Quoth the Raven July 11, 2013 - 10:24 am #79560 Reply

    If Wal Mart is so evil, why are people working there at all?  Are they breaking any laws?  If so, the company should be appropriately punished.  But if they’re not, then stop whining about their alleged mistreatment.  If the choice is: A) work at Wal Mart and have the state still pay for some of your living expenses, or B) Don’t have a job and have the state pay all of your living expenses, I’ll go with option A.

    Not to mention the fact that Wal Mart is cheap, and if you don’t make a lot of money, it’s a great place to shop.  That’s why so many people shop there, and why so many people want a Wal Mart to open near them.

    So, stop whining about their supposed ill-treatment of their people.  They aren’t a charity.  They don’t have social responsibility.  It’s a business.  That might sound harsh, but it’s reality.

    jackson July 11, 2013 - 10:27 am #79561 Reply

    Raven, if the company has no responsibility to pay their employees enough to survive without government assistance, do you also think the government has no responsibility to give the employees the assistance to make ends meet? Why does the government have to supplement the wages of a private company?



    okfuskee July 11, 2013 - 10:28 am #79562 Reply

    “Personally, I'd like nothing more than to have the best purchasing agent working on my behalf.”

    Are you sure? Google “Walmart pressure suppliers” and see what you get. Lots of stuff like this: http://www.fastcompany.com/47593/wal-mart-you-dont-know


    John Fontain July 11, 2013 - 10:32 am #79563 Reply

    Dezlboy – I like Costco too (except for the crowds).  I guess my focus is more on the consumer side than on the employment side.  While a Costco vs. a Walmart might provide a higher wage to a couple of hundred folks (some of which may not be Arlingtonians), our entire community will benefit from having the strongest purchasing agent in the world work on our behalf.  Plus, a lack of a membership fees and better prices on everyday consumables will be much more beneficial to lower income Arlingtonians.

    Quoth the Raven July 11, 2013 - 10:33 am #79564 Reply

    Jackson, the purpose of a private company and the purpose of a state are completely different.  So, to answer your question, I do think the government has the responsibility to give people assistance, and I’m glad they do.  To answer your second question, the government provides assistance to those who need it, and if someone needs it, regardless of whether or not they’re working, they get it.  The company isn’t paying below minimum wage, and as far as I know they aren’t breaking any laws.  And I’m thinking it’s better to be working at Wal Mart then not to be working at all.

    Sunshine July 11, 2013 - 10:35 am #79565 Reply

    I prefer Target but maybe that’s because I’ve rarely ever shopped at a Walmart and I’m surrounded by three Target stores that I visit often. I wouldn’t mind having another option. Tourists and people passing through the area would probably like a Walmart. How else will we get our “People of Walmart” photos? :-)

    John Fontain July 11, 2013 - 10:39 am #79566 Reply

    CourthouseChris and sansabelt – I respect your decision to not shop at Walmart.  And maybe I’m drawing incorrect inferences, but it sounds like you think nobody else should have the right to make a decision that differs from yours.  Can you help me understand why you think you should decide for everyone?

    Remember, having a Walmart still doesn’t mean you have to shop there.  Do you object to letting consumers and prospective employees decide for themselves whether to shop or work there?

    Dezlboy July 11, 2013 - 10:43 am #79569 Reply

    @John Fountain:  I understand your and others reasoning for wanting Walmart. And I guess the Walmart option is better than no stores at all. But, there are better options as a different retailer or holding Walmart to a higher standard (at least one above their poor employee standards).  Walmart’s decision (apparently) not to put down roots in DC (unless Mayor vetos the “living wage” bill) is not only directed at DC, but every other city who would consider the same wage bill.  I hate to see cities being “forced” to accept the very lowest common denominator as their citizens and taxpayers deserve better.

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