Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The media campaign against EFCA continues

Wal-Mart "associates" don't need a union, says CEO

A wounded, wimpy Matt Lauer softballs new Wal-Mart CEO Mike Duke on this morning's TODAY show. As they stroll down the aisles of the big-box giant discussing which time of the month customers can afford diapers for their kids, the subject of unions comes up. Striking a similar tone to D.C. Mayor Fenty's call for freeing teachers from "the burden" of collective bargaining, Duke won't even call Wal-Mart's largest workforce in the U.S. "workers."
Lauer: With 1.4 million associate employees who earn an average of $10.83 an hour [managers make as much as $11.89, cashiers make between $6.55 and $8.43--mk] Wal-Mart now faces a threat to it's corporate model. There's proposed legislation on Capitol Hill that would make it easier for unions to organize employees--the Employee Free Choice Act...

Duke: Well of course we're opposed to that. We have a unique relationship with our associates.
Duke, who earns a hefty $13 million annually, including stock options, of course, never tells us what it is that's "unique" about his relationship with his minimum-wage "associates" or why their earning a living wage would, in the words of a Home Depot exec, "destroy the American economy."

The Walton Family Foundation is also the biggest funder of privately-managed, non-union charter schools. Maybe we should start calling teachers, "associates" as well.


  1. What is paid to people at all levels in retail for the amount of actual work they need to do is pitiful compared to the absurd salaries paid to top executives in most industries. As for teachers, who together spend more productive time with our children than do their parents... well what's that worth?

  2. I am consistently amazed at the widespread ignorance about the benefits of unions to working people, though I shouldn't be, with enablers like Lauer all over the place. I often see comments over at Gotham Charter Schools extolling the freedoms teachers have at charters. They have the right to do more work for less pay, and set precedents like that for your kids and mine. Thanks a lot.


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