I don’t even know what to say. Via the New York Post (hat tip to NRO), more than half of the members of the New York City Council have served Walmart with a letter demanding that the company stop making millions of dollars in charitable donations to local groups:
Twenty-six of the 51 members of the Council charged in the letter that the world’s biggest retailer’s support of local causes is a cynical ploy to enter the market here.
“We know how desperate you are to find a foothold in New York City to buy influence and support here,” says the letter, obtained by The Post and addressed to Walmart and the Walton Family Foundation.
“Stop spending your dangerous dollars in our city,” the testy letter demands. “That’s right: this is a cease-and-desist letter.”
Last week, Walmart announced that it distributed $3 million last year to charities here, including $1 million to the New York Women’s Foundation, which offers job training, and $30,000 to Bailey House, which distributes groceries to low-income residents.
Well. How very spiteful and heinously out-of-touch of them. Here’s Neil Cavuto
interviewing dancing circles around New York City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer in defense of the letter this afternoon:
BRAMER: Walmart has a history of abusing its workers and profiting on the backs of hardworking men and women. … I think that where the [charitable donations] come from and where the money has been accumulated matters. …
CAVUTO: If you are a New York City resident and you’re paying through the nose for everything from milk and coffee to bread to drugs, what’s wrong with a big-box retailer like Walmart coming in and offering you $4 prescription drugs, offering consumers in this city who could surely use a break, a break?
BRAMER: I don’t think you have to choose between having a retailer that offers competitive prices for its good and a retailer that treats its workers well. … When Walmart comes into a city, they take more than they give.
CAVUTO: Do you know how many people apply for the roughly 200 positions that the typical Walmart offers? 8,000. 8,000.
BRAMER: It doesn’t mean that those are good jobs.
OK, so… prohibiting whatever your definition of “bad jobs” happens to be (and those 8,000 average applicants apparently disagree), is better than not offering those jobs at all? Not to mention offering gobs of savings in consumer goods to low-income city residents? And who cares if Walmart is trying is indeed trying to spread some goodwill with some of the city’s movers and shakers? Let ’em! The unions shutting out the competition of free market for their own entirely selfish ends will keep fighting back just as hard.