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Author Topic: OT---Walmart---On the PBS show"Frontline"  (Read 7187 times)

Tim Halligan

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Re: OT---Walmart---On the PBS show"Frontline"
« Reply #15 on: December 03, 2004, 06:10:48 AM »

Being from Australia, I don't really have a perspective on the Walmart issue, but I can add to the comments made by Fibes in his post.

In Australia, we have a wonderful (...not!) chain of stores called Harvey Norman. They have an interesting business model, in that each section of the store (furniture, electrical etc) is a seperate franchise, but with centralised advertising/admin etc. I believe that this is the first business of this type in the country.
Whenever they move into a new area, they practice aggressive tactics in an effort to carve themselves a niche...not uncommon in any country. As a post-guy who used to handle the radio and TV spots for one of the competition chains (now sadly defunct) I learned through the client just how ruthless HN are prepared to be...
HN management rang the CEO of this chain and basically said that HN were there to put him out of business. HN use below-cost pricing and other tactics as blunt instruments. The (now former) CEO told me that HN were prepared to trade in the red for 12-24 months, as long as at the end of that time period "HN came away with 100% of the market" (his words quoting HN management).

Quality service seems to lose everytime to cheaper pricing...which I guess is fine until there is a problem with the item. Certainly not a brilliant way to buy the kind of stuff that WE use every damn day.

"Don't forget, we are all engaged in a battle to the death against mediocrity." - J. Whynot

"You can tune a room only with a bulldozer." - Andy Peters


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Re: OT---Walmart---On the PBS show"Frontline"
« Reply #16 on: December 03, 2004, 12:57:07 PM »

Tim Halligan wrote on Fri, 03 December 2004 06:10

 ... through the client just how ruthless HN are prepared to be...
HN management rang the CEO of this chain and basically said that HN were there to put him out of business. HN use below-cost pricing and other tactics as blunt instruments. The (now former) CEO told me that HN were prepared to trade in the red for 12-24 months, as long as at the end of that time period "HN came away with 100% of the market" (his words quoting HN management).

hit it on the head ..

in many instances Wall Mart has done this ... most easily spotted are it's gasoline prices. (which have been adressed in a few lawsuits, but it continues)

when you are that big, it's easy to undercut ... and in this case they are not only doing that, they are pricefixing by demanding that all prices meet the chinese import pricepoints.  in effect forcing american business to china and american workers to unemployment.

unemployment tax is not paid by a company that goes to china, so the economy is hit twice as the deficit grows and the income stream is diminished.

the rich chinese then buy up our bonds for cheap so in the long run they'll be even richer.
Brian Lucey
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"the economy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the ecology" - unknown

David Schober

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Re: OT---Walmart---On the PBS show"Frontline"
« Reply #17 on: December 04, 2004, 02:48:16 AM »


In your last post you said about me:

“Unlike Lucey, I'm happy to have you continue to promote intentional, and easily addressed lies here. …One of the benefits of this sort of forum is that we can see when patterns emerge in a poster's messages - we can see when one clings to racism, greed, religious bigotry, and basically hate oriented policies. That helps us understand when someone we're talking to may be consumed by fear of the world around him - and thus needs to cling to fantasy versions of reality.”

Tom, it is here that you and I will be either to continue this conversation or not.  I have never called you a liar or any other name. Nor have I claimed you are lying, or even insinuated that.  You and I see things differently.  Yet you seem unable to have a conversation without resorting to calling those you disagree with various names.  You have called me a liar multiple times, and as I showed above, made clear implications that I am a racists, greedy, religious bigot, and promote “hate oriented policies”…an amazing feat considering you and I have only exchanged a few posts, never spoken and have never met.  I’m afraid to say this is typical from those on the left.  I have found that the left, liberal, progressive, Democrats, who pride themselves as being “open minded,” and “tolerant” in these posts are the ones who are the name callers.  They are, and you Tom, are the ones who when confronted with views that conflict with their own try to win the argument by calling someone a pejorative and spew sophistry, claiming their victory.

For starters, you called me a liar in the Prop 13 & 187 issues.  My little list of things Californian weren’t a list of liberal items.  Didn’t you read what I wrote?  They were examples of things that started in CA, and moved across the country.  Prop 13 & 187 are perfect examples of this.  Whether you like them or hate them, these propositions have been copied in various states.  

You said re: Prop 13
“Mr. Schober, as an eager corporate booster certainly knew this when he made the intentionally false linkage between this measure and "liberalism".

And re: Prop 187
“Again, Mr. Schober knew this when he intentionally misidentified this as part of California's liberal history.”

I never said either of those things.

Here’s what I said:
"California has consistently led the country in many areas. From Prop 13, 187, and others, to music and fashion are some of the ways CA has led the nation. Now CA has proved the liberal model of entitlement just doesn't work."

How you could claim that I was saying those initiatives were liberal is beyond me.  The point I made is that the liberal policies of high property tax rates resulted in Prop 13.  The liberal mandates for CA citizens to pay for goods and services to illegal aliens resulted in Prop 187.  As CA resident, you should know that.  The fact that you disagree with them doesn’t change what they are.  Those initiatives are conservative, not liberal.  Other states have adopted such measures.  Again, CA is moving away from some of their liberal policies.  And those actions are being repeated across the country.  At best I can consider you didn’t really see my point.  At worst you raised a straw man argument.
While you accuse me of lying about Prop 13 I find it rather ironic that you managed to leave out the most critical part of the initiative…tax relief to homeowners.  You however, told only the side of the story you wanted people to know.  The truth is before Prop 13 CA homeowners had their property taxes raised annually on appraised values.  And in a state like CA, where property values were going through the roof, people like our Moms and Dads, who lived in a paid-for home for 30 years, were forced to move out of their homes because they could no longer afford the property tax.  Other new homeowners were often not able to buy a new home because of the annual rate increases.  Now CA homes, like TN where I now live, are limited to a 1-2% rise in taxes per year.  I’m not aware of the commercial tax issues, but let’s presume that is true.  Surely you must realize when apartment owners are faced with large increases on their property taxes, those increases will be passes right along to the renters.  If property taxes on apartments are stable, who is the beneficiary?  It is the renters of those apartments.  I’m not saying apartment rates don’t go up.  But I am saying that had property taxes on those building continued to be raised at 10-20% a year, an easy rate of appreciation in CA, the renters would be paying for it.

Just today, the Christian Science Monitor ran a story regarding the problems of property taxes being raised at rates homeowners couldn’t afford.  The solution referenced was the actions of Prop 13.  See for yourself:


Also, CA is a liberal leaning state by anyone’s view.  Yet these Propositions you hate so much were passed by a wide margin of the voters.  How do you reconcile that?  Are you saying that the citizens of CA are corporate-loving, racists too?  For that matter, do you really think that a nut like David Duke has such credibility in your state that he influenced voters to his kind of views?  I was a resident of CA during 187.  I don’t remember him being there at all, but if you say so, I’ll take your word on it.  Frankly, I’d suspect that he would have hurt the measure, rather than help it.  

(By the way, anyone wanting to know what Prop 187 really said only need to do a google search and see.  It was essentially a measure that would restrict state services to LEGAL residents.  Despite Tom’s assertion, not all who supported this initiative are, were, or ever have been a racist.)

As far as your statement:
“There is UNIVERSAL agreement among economists that what Republican sociopath Schwarzenegger has done….”

Ignoring the name calling, whenever I hear a blanket statement about the views of economists, or anyone else, I know what is true is probably the exact opposite.  Are you telling me you know that statement to be a fact?  All economists are in agreement on this?  If so, please let us know how you obtained such information.  I’m not saying there aren’t plenty of those who disagree with your Governor, but that’s an obvious exaggeration.  Additionally, you contradicted yourself.  In your previous post you complained the Gov. was carelessly cutting programs right and left.  Yet in your last post you seem to say he’s not doing anything about spending, and leaving it to the next governor.  Both cannot be true.  

And, no I have not ascribed the deficits to Clinton.  This is another of your straw man arguments. I made no mention of the debt or Clinton, yet you seem to feel free to accuse me of believing this.  Of course the deficit has occurred on Bush’s watch.  And I for one am not pleased with that.  9/11, the recession that began during Clintons last term, and the war have had a major effect on the economy.  However, if you had cared to ask, you’d know I do agree this needs to be dealt with, and dealt with quickly.

As for the no-contract bids to Halliburton, your point is invalid unless you are also willing to criticize Clinton for doing the same thing in the aftermath of the Balkan war.
(Straw man argument #3.  I never said anything about Halliburton.)

You said:
“When caught up in your intentional misdirection with your comment about Marx, you simply shift to another boogeyman.”  This is getting comical.  It was then you brought up the deficit and Halliburton comment.  Talk about shifting direction!

As for the Michael Moore issue, my point to you was that he is the current king of spin and misdirection.  As far as I’m aware, the only person he’s ever entered into a debate with was Bill O’Reilly.  (So much for the view that Fox never airs opposing viewpoints)  And for that matter, the only way Moore would agree to come on was for there to be no editing of the interview.  Moore himself is a master editor, and has been proven that he will edit out portions of his films that work against the point he is making.  Obviously he wouldn’t subject himself to the very tool he uses on others.   Nevertheless, my point was taking on your spin that conservative economic policy was akin to Marxism.  You either don’t understand Marxism, supply side economics, or both.  While I do agree that business has a large and at times improper effect on our government, I simply don’t accept your premise that they are one and the same.  Ask Bill Gates, the Tobacco companies, the Detroit carmakers and other companies about the various lawsuits they’ve been dealing with lately.  No it’s not perfect, but if they were truly one and the same, as you say, then things would be much different.

Also, you attempted to minimize Grey Davis liberalism because there have been other Democrats who have changed parties.  This is seriously flawed logic. Are you saying Ted Kennedy, Hillary Clinton (or put your favorite liberal Democrat here) are moderates because Zell Miller is a conservative Democrat who changed parties?  (If A=B, and B=C, then A=B.  Putting your logic to work; Zell Miller is a Democrat.  Zell Miller is a conservative.  Ted Kennedy is a Democrat.  Therefore, Ted Kennedy is a conservative!  By the way, that same logic is the mistake you made with Marxism. )

Lastly, and back to my first point, I am caused to wonder if it possible for you to discuss politics without ad-hominem attacks on those you disagree with.  I was recently in England after the election and had a nice dialog with a good left-leaning Brit.  He is as anti-Bush as they come, and couldn’t comprehend how so many Americans could have voted the way they did.   But he said something I wish we in this forum could adhere to.  He said, “It’s okay to disagree. But we don’t have to be disagreeable.”  Tolerance is one of the things that those on the left claim to hold dear.  Yet I find an extreme lack of tolerance from many of those on the left in these conversations.  When those on the left speak of those whom they disagree it’s quite incredible how quickly attacks on intelligence and name-calling springs up.  Yet I find few conservatives resort to such childishness.  Over the last month or so I’ve collected a large number of examples of this and will be happy to post them if anyone disagrees.  (the names have been omitted to protect the guilty)

An intellectually honest person understands their view is not the only reasonable one.  And a truly intellectually honest person knows that just because someone disagrees with them, that doesn’t make them unreasonable.  There’s an old saying, “Whenever you call someone a name, you lost the debate.”  This forum has been rampant in those on the left wielding personal attacks on those they disagree with.  These positions we hold are just ideas.  Lord knows I’ve changed my views over the years.  Probably all of us have.  While I enjoy political discussions, I’m not a fan of doing it with those who attack the character of those that they don’t even know.  I appreciate the passion you, Brian, and others have for your views.  Yet I must politely insist that this methodology you have in your discussions must cease if there is to be further dialog.  I appreciate you signing-off, “Cordially.” Yet when you do it after calling me a racist, and implying me to be a greedy, religious bigot, and various other names, your sign-off seems insincere.  When you so carelessly throw about such attacks with no proof, it only diminishes your position.  It is clear to all that this ridiculous name-calling is a poor attempt at debate.  If you slander those with who are dialoging by wild unsubstantiated name calling, who can believe anything else that you say?  It would appear there is nothing you won’t say to promote your view.  

Tom, it is you in fact, who, in your own words, “continue to promote intentional, and easily addressed lies” when you create straw-man arguments and name calling in your posts.  Try sticking to the issues, arguing ideas, and leaving the name calling to those of lesser mental capacity on other forums.  These forums are filled with intelligent, hard working professionals and I don’t believe that any of them deserve such attacks.  I don’t think any of us are likely to change each other’s minds, but that’s not the point.  I think we owe each other respect even when we disagree.  Frankly, I think it would be proper for you to recant the heinous accusations you have leveled against me and apologize.  But as I don’t think it’s likely, I would be happy just so see your dialog improve to a higher level.  If it doesn’t, you’ll have to find someone else to slander.  I for one won’t stand for it and refuse to dialog with anyone that resorts to such childish actions.

This is a professional forum.  I think we should act as such.

David Schober


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Re: OT---Walmart---On the PBS show"Frontline"
« Reply #19 on: December 04, 2004, 03:59:05 PM »

i can't address the personal attacks, but shopping at walmart is clearly unamerican.

the idea of people driving japanese suv's with "patriotic" bumper stickers to walmart is funny in a sad ironic kind of way.

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