Friday, August 1, 2008

Wal-Mart Wants You - To Be Scared!

Wal-Mart has joined the Republican ranks, encouraging - to use a nice word for it - its managers to vote Republican. Why? Because the scary Democrats will only support the nasty bad unions and make everybody lose their jobs!

Back in 1998 we got a brand new grocery store in our town, part of a big Midwestern chain. We already had one store in the chain at the opposite side of the city, but this one would be representative of their newest look and services. Everybody was pretty excited, actually, because it meant new jobs and that at least one large company thought our ever-shrinking city worthy of investment.

I needed a part-time job and applied before it even opened for a third-shift shelf stocking position. And I got it. At a whole $5.50 an hour - twenty-five cents bonus over regular wage-slaves because of the inconvenience of the shift!

My "favorite" memory is of the orientation meeting, conducted by the personnel director for the entire chain. She stood on a small platform, introduced herself, thanked us for becoming part of this wonderful "employee-owned" store - yeah, right - and then she said: "You may hear some talk about unions. We're not anti-union, but you should know the truth. Unions will only cost you money and make you lose your job. Oh, and don't steal because we're watching you. Thanks! Have a nice day!"

That was her entire speech, pretty much verbatim. Though not as good as that I got from the president of the bookstore I used to work at during my interview for a new management position, about ten or so years earlier. When I told him that I felt very experienced at the store location after three years and that I knew both the staff and the customers very well, he said: "A good manager doesn't need to know those things because a good manager already knows them."

I knew I didn't have the job then just like I knew I wouldn't be working at the grocery store very long. I did tough it out for a year because we needed the paltry monies so badly, but the corporate attitude was demeaning to say the least. I had to shave off my beard to stock groceries because I was "handling food" - food in cans and bottles and boxes and bags! A month after I left, they changed their facial hair policy. Now even the butchers have beards.

Corporate Amerikkka is a nasty place. It tends to reflect the worst aspects of our culture. The stupid and the cruel and the incompetent have no problem rising to the top in this world because they haven't internal ethical compasses. I'm not over-generalizing here. I've years of experience working for asses like this. The bottom-line is the only guideline they follow and if scaring their employees helps with that, then that's fine and dandy. After all, that's how the President runs the country, right?


Memphis said...

I know just what you're talking about.Ive worked for one of the "Big Boxes"for 4 yrs.What a pile of shit.Everything you were told in your meetings ,I have also been told.I still like pushing their buttons,even if in small ways.Ive invented new(and non-existent) bolts,hand tools,depts and even employees....sorry "Associates".ha

gomonkeygo said...

You're a very sick man...thankfully. Glad you're on the side of good.

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