It’s cool though, the Walmart CEO is here to helpfully explain to all of us why these low wages are really not a problem, nope, not a problem at all. In fact, he thinks that Walmart employees are “inspirational” because of what they do. I mean, THEY should be paying HIM to go to work because working at Walmart is like attending a leadership seminar, but with discount cards.
Last night, Bloomberg LP President Dan Doctoroff asked Walmart CEO Mike Duke about how he paid employees. [...] Duke responded that he pays his 2.2 million employees competitive wages. The average full-time, hourly U.S. associate makes $12.57 an hour, according to Walmart.
See? There you have it. Walmart pays competitive wages, says Walmart. Case closed. End of story. So don’t worry about that scholarly study [PDF] stating that Walmart workers make 28% less than workers at other retailers; reality has a liberal bias, everyone knows that. Also too, it’s not like Walmart is raking in the dough, OK? Retail is a “lower margin industry,” apparently. See?
Duke said that retail is a lower-margin industry in general, and that Walmart’s wages are competitive.
“Retailing is the most competitive industry out there, and we do pay competitive wages,” Duke said. “Last year we promoted 165,000 people from entry-level to managerial positions.”
It’s SO low margin that everyone really had to sacrifice so that the CEO could get his $18.7 million dollar salary last year, and also for that $5 million they spent on lobbying, and also for the $61 billion they paid shareholders over the past five years. It’s lower margin, they would LOVE to pay a fair wage, but they just can’t, you understand.