Thursday, April 28, 2005

You do it to yourself

I was recently watching a Frontline documentary about Walmart and learned some interesting things.

The main one is that Americans have sold themselves to the Chinese.

The line of reasoning: Walmart became so big that it could make demands upon manufactures, reversing the existing trend for the first time. As Walmart continually strives for lower and lower prices (driven by patrons), they made ‘unreasonable’ demands upon their American manufactures. The not-so-subtle implication was that the American companies had to start manufacturing in China just to stay competitive.

Some relevant info: Walmart has 100 million Americans buy things at their stores every week. Walmart has the highest revenue in the world, one time posting a figure of $288 billion! An organization that moves so much product, obviously needs a lot of product to move. Walmart has 6000 manufactures worldwide, 80% of which are in China.

So, what you have are numerous companies that produce numerous products employing numerous Chinese people, all serving Walmart. Additionally, there is an increasing trade deficit between the US and China, with the US importing more goods from China than the reverse.

Walmart devastates local businesses and small towns, mistreats American manufacturers, creates exportation of American jobs, increases trade deficits and promotes uniformity and censorship of certain media. Aaaaaaand, what do they get?

They do it to themselves.


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