by Max Brantley
Wall Street Journal today reports that Wal-Mart has mobilized for the fall election.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is mobilizing its store managers and department supervisors around the country to warn that if Democrats win power in November, they'll likely change federal law to make it easier for workers to unionize companies -- including Wal-Mart.
In recent weeks, thousands of Wal-Mart store managers and department heads have been summoned to mandatory meetings at which the retailer stresses the downside for workers if stores were to be unionized.
Wal-Mart Watch, the labor-funded truth squad against Wal-Mart bullying, comments:
Today's Wall Street Journal story demonstrates once again that Wal-Mart intimidates its workers. Whether it is locking them in the company's stores, pressuring them to keep working even after they have clocked out, or giving them "instruction" about their vote, Wal-Mart has consistently exhibited unique examples of unethical behavior that often raise legal questions.
"We have been receiving the reports described in the Journal for the past week. Some of the reports we received were even more egregious than what was described in today's story. In one case, a worker said they were shown a slide that said "Obama = union" and then were told why unions were bad.
"The stories cited in the Journal are consistent with the numerous stories we hear from employees across the nation every day about Wal-Mart's intimidation tactics. All of these tactics seem to be designed to keep workers from demanding better wages, decent benefits or fairer working conditions. Wal-Mart seems willing to do anything to maintain a status quo in which the company pays poorly, refuses to compensate workers for time worked, discriminates against workers and offers poor benefits.
UPDATE: Wal-Mart denies all.