A Real American Hero

Wal*Mart has announced its plan to buy $50 billion worth of products made in the U.S. over the next decade:

Wal Mart Buys American

Unfortunately, this only represents 2% of Wal*Mart’s total spending per year.  Where does the company get the other 98% of its merchandise?  China, anyone?

Wal*Mart also plans to hire 100,000 honorably discharged veterans as noted in the same article:

The centerpiece of Wal-Mart’s plan is a pledge to hire veterans, many of who have had a particularly difficult time finding work after coming home from Afghanistan and Iraq. The unemployment rate for veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan stood at 10.8 percent in December, compared with the overall unemployment rate of 7.8 percent.

Wal-Mart said it plans to hire every veteran who wants a job and has been honorably discharged in the first 12 months off active duty. The program, which will start on Memorial Day, will include jobs mostly in Wal-Mart’s stores or in its Sam’s Club locations. Some will be at its headquarters, based in Bentonville, Ark. or the company’s distribution centers.

I will refrain from making a joke or two about returning from Iraq or Afghanistan and being sent to Bentonville, Arkansas.  The First Lady approves of this plan:

“We all believe that no one who serves our country should have to fight for a job once they return home,” she said in a statement. “Wal-Mart is setting a groundbreaking example for the private sector to follow.”

Fight for a job?  What job?  Her husband’s administration is responsible for the loss of over 4.6 million jobs since 2008:

Lost Jobs

That’s a big reason why these guys (and everyone else) have to ‘fight for a job’.

Actually, this is great news if you are a veteran.  Now you too can get a low-wage job and be treated as badly as any other Wal*Mart employee.  Of course, Wal*Mart has no ulterior motives:

The move comes as Wal-Mart tries to bolster its image amid widespread criticism. The company, which often is criticized for its low-paying jobs and buying habits in the U.S., recently has faced allegations that it made bribes in Mexico and calls for better safety oversight after a deadly fire at a Bangladesh factory that supplies its clothes.

Pay no attention to our criminal activity (bribing officials when doing business in other countries is a felony), high employee turnover rate (37% per year), and 3rd world sweatshops…LOOK, WE’RE HIRING VETERANS!!!

I would fail as an economist if I did not point out the biggest incentive for Wal*Mart hiring veterans: the company will get a tax credit of $9,600 for every veteran it hires.  Thus, hiring 100,000 veterans would result in a tax credit of $960 million for the company.

Tax Credit for Hiring Veterans

PR Stunt

God Bless America Wal*Mart.  What would we ever do without companies like this?

* Please note that the heavy use of sarcasm and denigration of Wal*Mart in this post is in no way directed toward the veterans themselves.  After spending time in that sh!thole part of the world, the government does owe them something.  Something better than the opportunity to be a wage slave for a multinational corporation…

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Categories: China, Outsourcing, Unemployment

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