"Community activists" like Acorn often oppose new Wal—Marts, and whenever they have influence, Wal—Marts are scarce. The communities suffer as a result, of course. The latest example of the malign character of the community activist branch of the left comes from Chicago. The Chicago Sun—Times reports:
Eighteen months after the Chicago City Council torpedoed a South Side Wal—Mart, 24,500 Chicagoans applied for 325 jobs at a Wal—Mart opening Friday in south suburban Evergreen Park, one block outside the city limits.
The new Wal—Mart at 2500 W. 95th is one block west of Western Avenue, the city boundary.
Of 25,000 job applicants, all but 500 listed Chicago addresses, said John Bisio, regional manager of public affairs for Wal—Mart.
"In our typical hiring process, you're pretty successful if you have 3,000 applicants," he said. "They were really crowing about 11,000 in Oakland, Calif., last year. So to get 25,000—plus applications and counting, I think is astonishing."
Assistant manager Rachael Fierro, who was still interviewing prospects Wednesday, said "we saw a little bit of everything —— people who hadn't worked for a long time, people who saw an opportunity to do something with themselves. That's the information I got from applicants."
So let's add up the impact of the "progressives" on their victims:
Chicagoans will have to commute longer distances,
They will lose time from their busy lives,
They will bear extra expenses and have less money for necessities,
They will polluting Mother Earth, creating greenhouse gases
They will use energy, making the big oil companies and petro—sheiks richer.
These are the same "progressives" who are taking over the Democratic Party. They hurt both the supposed constituents and themselves.
Hat tip: Ed Lasky
Thomas Lifson 1 26 06
Opionionjournal.com has an excellent article by Steve Hanke and Stephen Walters on the Wal—Mart battle in Maryland and its serious consequences for the economy there.
How could our legislators turn a blind eye to such areas? Partly, of course, they are simply eager for Big Labor's votes and money and therefore subservient to its interests. The Service Employees International Union actually helped draft what became known as the "Wal—Mart bill." Unable——so far——to organize workers at the company, the union's immediate national strategy is to limit Wal—Mart's competitive reach by raising its costs. [emphasis added] Maryland was a shrewdly chosen place to kick off this campaign.
It looks a lot as though the workers at Wal—Mart are pawns to the union's larger agenda.
Roz Smith adds:
Chicago has a 1.25% city sales tax. In 2002, the most recent year for which I could quickly find actual per store date, the average U.S. Wal—mart store did over $51 million in sales. Since many of Wal—mart's stores are in rural areas, one can expect that a store in the densely populated Chicago area would have sales above the average. 1.35 percent of $51 million is $637,500. Chicago also lost its $4 per month per employee in city head tax. In addition, if Wal—mart leases personal tax for use in their store, they would have had to pay the Chicago personal property lease tax. Then there is the increase in property tax revenue for a thriving retail site over a vacant lot.
In addition, whenever a new Wal—mart opens, the other shops, fast food places and gas stations nearby usually thrive on the increase in traffic. Add in the sales, employment and property taxes a thriving retail strip brings in, and the costs of pleasing those anti—Wal—mart activists quickly add up.