Attention Shoppers: Walmart Makes Life Better

Posted: Dec 13, 2010 11:22 AM
While Americans are out shopping this Christmas season, we should all offer up a little prayer of thanks that Walmart exists.

Want to know why? Read Dale Buss' powerful piece on Walmart, "Attention Shoppers," in the December issue of Townhall Magazine. Here's an excerpt:

Despite rabid attacks from the Left, Walmart continues to grow and prosper—all to the benefit of America and the world.

As chief of Stonyfield Farm, Gary Hirshberg harbors a dirty little secret: It’s Walmart that has been propelling strong double-digit sales increases for the organic-yogurt maker lately. But don’t remind Hirshberg’s earthy coterie in New England that Stonyfield has become tight with the reigning bogeyman of global capitalism.

“It certainly was awkward” telling his friends about the company’s new relationship with Walmart when the behemoth retailer expanded its appetite for organic products and opened the door to Stonyfield in 2003, Hirshberg concedes. “And it was definitely troubling to some of our other” retail-chain customers.

“But my 1,850 [organic] dairy farmers are all making money,” says the “CE-Yo” of the Londonderry, N.H.-based company, which now is majority-owned by the Dannon yogurt company and whose annual revenues top $300 million. “You cannot necessarily say that about any group of 1,850 conventional dairy farmers right now.”

Yet Walmart’s benefits don’t stop there. Its demands have pushed Stonyfield to new heights of efficiency in manufacturing and logistics, which in turn has made its products more affordable everywhere. For example, Stonyfield just introduced a 48- count pack of single-serve yogurts for the school-lunch market that can be priced competitively with conventional yogurt, replacing the company’s previous, more expensive six-pack offering—so that now millions more American schoolchildren can enjoy the benefits of organic yogurt.

“Walmart has a very powerful effect that not many people understand,” concludes Hirshberg. “But I see it every day.”

And Hirshberg isn’t alone among liberals whose eyes are being opened about Walmart. Continually and continuously over the last few years, Walmart has stepped up to one progressive challenge after another to its corporate policies and practices. The Bentonville, Ark.-based retailer has become environmentally exemplary. Walmart has actually called for a federal mandate on employers to offer health insurance. And the chain has expanded into urban centers such as Chicago so that poor city dwellers finally can benefit from its low, low prices, just as suburban and rural consumers have done for decades.

So, has Walmart at last managed to co-opt or at least neutralize all of the leftist critics who have raged against the company for decades?

Not a chance. Culturally conservative and staunchly and successfully non-union, Walmart retains huge liberal enemies, mostly in the American news and entertainment media and among union officials. And because those two groups are so influential in fueling progressive politics and culture in the United States, they’re able to keep alive a substantial block of opposition to everything Walmart is and does.

Read the entire report in the December issue. Order today.