Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2), head of the council’s finance committee, sat in on the meeting Friday morning with Walmart officials and Brian Kenner, Bowser’s deputy mayor for planning and economic development.
Evans said that, behind closed doors, Walmart officials were more frank about the reasons the company was downsizing. He said the company cited the District’s rising minimum wage, now at $11.50 an hour and possibly going to $15 an hour if a proposed ballot measure is successful in November. He also said a proposal for legislation requiring D.C. employers to pay into a fund for family and medical leave for employees, and another effort to require a minimum amount of hours for hourly workers were compounding costs and concerns for the retailer.
“They were saying, ‘How are we going to run the three stores we have, let alone build two more?’ ” Evans said.
Consequences— consequences. In order to pay for a $15 minimum wage prices will have to be raised and profit margins brought down. Leftest never consider that wages are tied to benefits and related costs. The dynamics of stores have changed over time and the staff has been eliminated and we are even seeing automation in the likes of factories and fast food. Other enterprises have gone to hiring self employed staff.
This other part might bother me more that the minimum wage restriction:
He also said a proposal for legislation requiring D.C. employers to pay into a fund for family and medical leave for employees, and another effort to require a minimum amount of hours for hourly workers…
Sounds like socialist Sweden. And if it catches on in D.C., look for it coming soon to a town near you.
Pray it dies before the ink is dry.
[quote=“silliessis, post:5, topic:48102”]
It’s called Free Enterprize!
If you can’t compete you lose.
That may sound heartless but let me ask you this:
Do you believe that Walmart started out as a giant, a destroyer of American small businesses? :eusa_think:
[/quote]I think that Wal-Mart is more of a Chinese company than it is American.
I’ve always advocated for strengthening and favoring American industry over foreign goods. I believe in prioritizing American gains over an ideology that states “Everyone is a global consumer without borders”. I reject this line of thinking. I am an American and I stand with and fight for American enterprise. Wal-mart is an international conglomerate, that makes more money overseas than it does domestically. And it makes more money for China than America. I do not consider it an ally to anything I want for my community.
Some people choose to stand by their love of “free enterprise”. I’m much happier to stand by my friends and family in my community.
The nature of business is that it isn’t static. Buggy manufacturers were driven out of business by car manufacturers (or went into the car-making business). Slide rule have been replaced by calculators; HP’s $450 HP 35 and HP 45 were driven off the market by even more powerful and much less expensive models; the calculator function on cellphones will probably be the end of stand-alone calculators, possibly excepting at the very high end.
That’s technology, of course. On the business model side, I don’t “get” the beef with Walmart, why it’s such a bogeyman. Walmart is just the latest (?) iteration of an evolution in retail that’s been going on for something like a century. First there were Mom-and-Pop (M & P) corner stores; then came chains and co-ops of corner stores that used their buying power and wide area logistics to give customers more choices at lower prices; then came supermarkets, who used their larger facilities to offer even greater variety, a wider range of products, convenience (one-stop shopping), and still lower prices. Whether it’s Kmart or Walmart (or Target, or Kohl’s, or …), those stores are just ultra-supermarkets - broader range of goods, world-wide logistics chain.
In another aspect of business models, sometimes stores’ business model, what they sell, goes away. Remember Blockbuster and Hollywood Video? Even more recently, Radio Shack went under because (like Blockbuster and Hollywood) their whole marketplace disappeared.
Why is Walmart THE big bad bogeyman that kills small businesses? Chain and co-op corner markets killed off lots of M & Ps. The likes of Kroger and Safeway killed off even more, as well as chain/co-op corner markets. Like it or not, an M & P trying to compete head-to-head with Walmart or Target or Safeway or … with the very same products and services will fail. The M & P needs to offer something Walmart, et al, do not and will not. It may be specialty products, it may be custom products, it may be a degree of service Walmart, et al, cannot offer. IOW, whether huge or tiny, businesses have to operate smart. An M & P in a large marketplace is not going to make $$ selling generic milk and bread; OTOH, Walmart’s shelf space is too valuable to try to sell Salomon or Merrell trail-running shoes (i.e. high-end quality and prices but low-moderate volume).
And let’s not leave out - THE MALL. It was a whole new way to go shopping, and the public loved them! The Chambers of Commerce and Main St. proprietors, not so much, but there was no going back. Not with all their valiant attempts could they convince shoppers to return to the inconvenience of Main St., once they’d gotten a taste of parking in one spot to do all of their shopping. (Even centrally-located parking garages didn’t do the trick.)
Sears & Roebuck is an excellent example of what you expressed as ‘changing w/the times.’ Started out as a catalogue, then went to (semi) M&P where one could view his merchandise before ordering, then expanded into larger stores – that ended up being one of - if not THE - main attraction at the mall.
In short, they saw the future, and went w/it; even if it took restructuring to buy out Roebuck. (Yes, Penny’s followed suit, along w/a few others. Sadly, Monkey Ward didn’t make it.)
Perhaps it’s selective memory on my part, but I don’t recall anyone making boogeymen out of them for having left Main St. where so many were originally located.
My first thought is that Wal-Mart gets ‘marked’ because they’re non-union. But, I’ve no idea if Sears, etc., are union or not. (My guess is ‘not’.)
My best guess is jealousy because Wal-Mart can stand on its own. Which, in turn, makes them an easy target.