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The Walton family—who, as heirs to the Walmart fortune, have more wealth than 42 percent of American families combined—are impeding the nation’s transition to a clean energy future, a new study by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) finds.
“The Waltons claim to have a deep commitment to sustainability, but their support for anti-solar initiatives tells a different story,” said Stacy Mitchell, a senior researcher at ILSR and author of How the Walton Family is Threatening America’s Clean Energy Future(pdf). “The Waltons are investing in efforts that both undercut clean energy and prevent average Americans from benefiting economically from solar power.”
The report reveals that since 2010, the Waltons have donated $4.5 million to more than 20 organizations, including the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), Americans for Prosperity, and the American Enterprise Institute, which are leading state campaigns against clean energy polices such as those that encourage utilities to source a share of their electricity from renewables or allow customers with rooftop solar systems to feed any excess electricity they produce back into the grid and be paid the going retail rate for it.
Tag Archives | walmart
Having money really can get you out of anything.
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It was a routine arrest, the kind Texas Public Safety officers like Trooper Jeffrey Davis make every day. But little did Davis know that the woman he had just booked for driving while intoxicated possessed a superhuman power. She wasn’t able to walk heel to toe. She couldn’t put her index finger to her nose if her eyes were shut. She even had a hard time keeping her head up. In other words, she failed the Standardized Roadside Sobriety Test that Davis administered the evening of Oct. 7, 2011 and was arrested.
Yet, she was Alice Walton, heiress to the Walmart fortune, a woman with a superhuman power at her disposal. The power to swipe-up artistic masterpieces prized around the world and horde them in backwater Bentonville, Ark. The power to keep an international payroll of three million people doing your bidding, under the boot of poverty.
What? Next thing I know you’ll be telling me that the guy offering prostate exams in the back alley behind Taco Bell isn’t legit.
According to an arrest report, a female reported Thursday that she was approached by the man in the Walmart parking lot after she had loaded her child into her car. He said he wanted to read her palm.
The man told the woman he could tell she was pregnant and requested to feel the child’s heartbeat. Although the woman said “no” the man insisted and touched the woman’s breast. Before walking away, the man told the woman the child was a boy.
Abby Martin speaks about the trend of famous people who walk a thin line between corporate sponsorship and celebrity shilldom, calling out Bob Dylan, Scarlett Johansson and Tom Cruise as recent examples.
Abby Martin discusses the US federal minimum wage law and calls out the top five corporations, such as Target, McDonalds and Yum Brands that refuse to pay their workers a living wage despite posting record profits and generously compensating their CEOs. Abby then speaks with RT political commentator, Sam Sacks, about Wal-Mart’s shady business practices, the decision by the National Labor Relations Board to go after the company for illegally firing workers after they decided to protest the store’s wage policies last year and the corporation’s decision to build six new stores in the District of Columbia.
On Black Friday, peaceful protest is a jailable offense, while violent mobs are acceptable so long as they are spending money. Rania Khalek writes:
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The treatment of peaceful protesters compared to the unruly and sometimes violent crowds of stampeding Black Friday shoppers couldn’t be more different. While the former is ostracized and forcibly removed by police, the latter is encouraged to come out for a competitive brawl over marked off goods. Nowhere is this contrast more clearly defined than in the police treatment of Walmart protesters over the last 24 hours.
On Friday, at least 1,000 Walmart employees throughout the country walked off the job to protest Walmart’s poor labor practices. Local police departments have been happy to disperse and even arrest strikers and their supporters on behalf of the world’s largest retailer.
At a Walmart store in Paramount, just outside of Los Angeles, some 1,500 people rallied against Walmart. Josh Eidelson, live-blogging about the Walmart strikes at The Nation, reports that “Nine people have been arrested for sitting in the street on Lakewood Boulevard, including three striking Walmart retail workers from area stores.
There’s trouble in paradise, the New York Times reports:
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Protests against Wal-Mart expanded on Tuesday, spreading to 28 stores in 12 states, a union spokesman said.
Mr. Schlademan, director of the union-backed Making Change at Walmart campaign, added that more than 200 employees were traveling to Wal-Mart’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark., to stage a protest on during the company’s annual meeting with financial analysts. He warned that disgruntled Wal-Mart employees, joined by labor unions and community groups, might stage a combined protest and educational campaign the Friday after Thanksgiving, the traditional start of the holiday shopping season.
Colby Harris, who earns $8.90 an hour after three years at a Walmart in Lancaster, Tex., said, “We’re protesting because we want better working conditions and better wages and because we want them to stop retaliating against associates who exercise their right to talk about what’s going on in their stores.”
Wal-Mart officials insisted that the protests were publicity stunts rather than strikes, carried out by a tiny fraction of the nation’s 1.4 million Wal-Mart workers.
Via Buzzfeed, activist Daneyvilla took an snapped photos as a veritable army of riot police cracked down on a demonstration by several hundred completely peaceful, largely middle-aged Walmart warehouse employees. From the workers’ website, the reason for the strike:
No one should come to work and endure extreme temperatures, inhale dust and chemical residue, and lift thousands of boxes weighing up to 250lbs with no support. Workers never know how long the work day will be- sometimes its two hours, sometimes its 16 hours. Injuries are common, as is discrimination against women and illegal retaliation against workers who speak up for better treatment.