Discussing what's right till there's nothing left.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Time For Conservatives to Dump Wal-Mart

I understand the historical support most conservatives gave to Wal-Mart initially. An example of free enterprise and American success, they seemed to be under attack from the left only because their business model was perceived to be anti union.

But politics clouded the dark underside of Wal-Mart. Their everyday low prices came as a result of onerous contracts that put such American staple companies as Rubbermaid out of business. Wal-Mart's contracts favor Chinese manufacturing and advantages so-called "free trade".

We conservatives like to tout capitalism and free enterprise, fairness in business dealing and a level playing field. But the Chinese don't play by these rules. Their forced labor, prison labor, child labor and poor working conditions are not stereotypes. Nor is their choking pollution. China also props up their currency artificially to give themselves an unfair advantage in trade.

There is a sad and dangerous history of our government looking the other way when it comers to China, ever since 1972 when President Richard Nixon "opened Chinese markets". We've heard for a generation about the billion consumers in China who will buy American goods. It was a myth. The only thing America has ever exported to China is manufacturing jobs and intellectual property. If you buy an iPod in China it likely wasn't made by Apple. If you buy one here it was manufactured in China by slave labor.

How does an American company like Rubbermaid compete? With layers of environmental and labor laws piled on them, they don't have a chance.

If you buy cheap goods from Wal-Mart made in China, you're just feeding the problem. You're adding to American unemployment, contributing to the slave labor in China, and as usual, funding an adversary who is plotting to do us harm.

Conservatives need to stop propping up Wal-Mart and start propping up American jobs.