The Widdershins

Posts Tagged ‘Wal-Mart

wacko criminal lineup

Good Saturday to you Widdershins.   I have decided I like my goofy lineup for my weekend light fare posts so I’m going to keep using it.

My dental issues have gotten better but then I got some bad news from a good friend of mine yesterday.  A really good friend of mine (he and his wife drove me home for the momster’s funeral…I knew I’d never be able to drive) has been fighting some issues with peripheral neuropathy in his right foot.  Essentially the neuropathy had deadened the nerves in his foot and he could not feel that he was having problems there.  He developed cellulitis in that foot and leg and to make a long story short he is going to have to have the leg amputated below the knee.  So far he seems to be handling it well but tomorrow  he and his wife and I are going to check out a few inpatient physical rehab facilities.  However, we have to be done and back to our respective abodes because he and his wife are Alabama fans and I’m LSU so we really cannot be together after kickoff at 7:00 p.m Central Time.  🙂   So because of all of this, this post won’t have as many weird stories or funny youtube clips.

Yeah we’ve all been there…but KFC?  Maybe Popeyes…

So this young woman in China got dumped by her boyfriend.  As many of us have been wont to do, she decided to seek solace in food.

Depressed, Tan Shen, 26, from Chengdu, in China’s southwest Sichuan Province, decided she needed some finger licking good comfort food to get over her ex and turned to what she enjoyed most – Kentucky Fried Chicken.

She said: “I was walking around feeling miserable and decided to stop off at the KFC at the train station.

“I hadn’t planned on staying there long, I just wanted some chicken wings. But once I got in there and started eating I decided I needed time to think.

Okay, I can see the needing time to think thing…”Was it me?  Did I do something wrong?”  We’ve probably all been there after a break-up.  Well Tan sat and she thought.  Oh and had chicken wings and fries.  And she sat some more and thought some more…and had even more wings.  She ended up staying there for a week!  She said she didn’t want to go back to her apt. because it reminded her of her boyfriend.  After the employees from different shifts began to realize that Tan had been there for awhile they got a little concerned.

Worker Jiang Li Lung, 22, said: “We work in shifts here and the restaurant is open 24 hours a day, so we get a lot of people coming through. At first no one really noticed her.

“But after a few days I began thinking she looked really familiar. Then I realised we had been serving her for the past three days and that she hadn’t actually left.

“When we asked her if she was ok, she said she was and just needed time to think. And then asked for another box of chicken wings with extra large fries.”

Well eventually Tan got tired of the KFC, probably the chicken wings too and the scene in general.

“I decided the best thing to do would be to leave the city and go back to my parents. I had already told work I was off sick, so phoned them and said I was leaving.

“And I was getting sick of the taste of chicken so there was no point in staying there anymore.”

Nothing like making a total break, is there?

 Oh Florida…you’re so better than this

Yes I was a teen-aged boy at one time and yes also, the hormones can get the better of you at times.  But seriously, I don’t know about this.

So this 19 yeas old guy was in the Wal-Mart in Brooksville FL.  And while young Sean Johnson of nearby Lake Panasoffkee was in the Wal-Mart he grabbed a stuffed toy horse and took it the bedding dept. where it appears he had his way with the stuffed animal.

The perverted teen allegedly grabbed the stuffed toy from a shelf at the Wal-Mart in Brooksville, Fla. and walked into the bedding department to have some alone time with the toy, store workers told police.

Images caught on Surveillance cameras clearly catches Johnson going to town with the stuffed animal. Once he was finished pleasuring himself, he returned the “contaminated” stuffed animal to the toy department.

Johnson fled before security could apprehend him but Brooksville police later made the arrest.

And what about the stuffed horse?

Wal-Mart gathered the merchandise as well as others that came in contact with it – and removed the items from the toy aisle.

Okay so the Wal-Mart “removed the items from the toy aisle”.  BUT DID THEY THROW THEM AWAY??????
I mean, this is Wal-Mart folks.   I would not be visiting the toy dept. at that particular Wal-Mart for a looong time if ya know what I mean.

 A couple of You Tube vids

You’ve been here…you know it.  It’s the dreaded Customer Service Call.  The only thing this video doesn’t have is the phrase “Please listen carefully as our menu options have recently changed”.   👿

Simon the Cat refuses to “dog”

This cat definitely enjoys corn on the cob

Okay Widdershins that’s all I’ve got.  As I said, I’ve got to be back away from my Bama friends by kickoff.  Bama is a 6 & 1/2 pt favorite, but you know what?  It’s Saturday night…in Baton Rouge…in Tiger Stadium.  Strange things happen there when Les Miles is coaching a football game.  Allons les Tigres! 

Oh and one last thing:  As you may know LSU has Mike the Tiger as their mascot.  We currently have Mike VI.  Folks have been disappointed because Mike hasn’t made an appearance at a game this year.  The vet who is in charge of Mike’s care says Mike simply doesn’t want to get in his traveling carriage.  And as the vet says: “He’s a Tiger.  He doesn’t want to go.  Who’s to make him?”  Really!  And that’s a shame because part of the tradition is that when Mike makes an appearance at Tiger Stadium his handlers have a habit of placing his carriage in front of the doors to the locker room of the opposing team.

Traditionally, Mike the Tiger will get into a trailer and sit outside the opponent’s locker room on the field as an intimidation factor. And it works.

Former Alabama defensive end Marcell Dareus was terrified of it when he made the trip to Death Valley in 2010.

“That thing, that thing scared the life out of me,” he said at the time.

Heh.  We need him tonight.

Okay folks, completely open thread.  Take it where you will.  I’ll be back here after the game either playing a fight song or the Gloom, Despair Hee-Haw song.




Just in time for the “holiday season”, Wal-mart decided it couldn’t wait to hand out the lumps of coal to its employees.  The company has decided it can no longer afford to offer health insurance coverage to its part-time employees.  Further, they decided they also needed to increase the cost of coverage for their employees who will still have coverage.

The world’s largest retailer said it would raise health insurance premiums for its entire U.S. workforce beginning in January. In addition, Wal-Mart will end coverage for employees who work fewer than 30 hours a week, a change that will impact 2 percent of U.S. workers, or about 30,000 people.

Okay…fair enough.  The company says it is experiencing “higher health care costs” and also “It said more people than expected had enrolled in its plans and its annual forecast for health care costs had risen by 50 percent.”.  Okay, I think I get this now:  Wal-Mart offered health care coverage to its employees…employees signed up for that coverage…Wal-Mart goofed and didn’t expect that many employees to sign up. (?)  Huh..what?  The largest retailer in the world doesn’t employee HR or finance people smart enough to guestimate how many folks would sign up for their health care plans?  Well I certainly think heads should roll, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of their rank and file employees.

The decision to reduce coverage came a week before the company’s chief executive, Doug McMillion, is due to face fund managers and analysts at an annual meeting for the investment community. Wal-Mart has been struggling to boost profits, with U.S. same-store sales flat or declining for the last six quarters.

Wal-Mart said the move would bring it in line with many of its competitors. Target Corp and Home Depot Inc recently announced cuts to benefits in light of the Affordable Care Act.

Ah yes, the good ole A.C.A., aka Obamacare.  Well I guess they had to blame it on something.  Now, reading the article I could not help but laugh out loud at this:

Wal-Mart’s Welborn [senior vice president of global benefits] said on a conference call that the company had not yet figured out how much it would save by cutting benefits. The company said in August it expected to spend $500 million on U.S. healthcare this year, up from its estimate of $330 million just a few months earlier.

The yahoo article points out that the decision “would primarily hurt lower-income workers, many of whom are being left behind in the economic recovery.”.  And that brings up another interesting little fact that I’m sure some of you are are aware of,, either by personal experience or stories from family members and it’s called the great wage slowdown.

The typical American family makes less than the typical family did 15 years ago, a statement that hadn’t previously been true since the Great Depression. Even as the unemployment rate has fallen in the last few years, wage growth has remained mediocre. Last week’s jobs report offered the latest evidence: The jobless rate fell below 6 percent, yet hourly pay has risen just 2 percent over the last year, not much faster than inflation. The combination has puzzled economists and frustrated workers.

The Times article goes into a lot of economic stuff which I’m just about totally unfamiliar with.  The writer does say Obama gave a speech touting the unemployment drop and that surely good times will be here again soon.  One thing I found ironic from the Times piece was this little nugget:

As for the other entry in the ledger, the biggest reason to think economic growth may translate more directly into wage gains is the turnabout in health costs. After years of rapid increases, they have slowed sharply in the last three years. Mr. Obama likes to give more credit to the 2010 health care lawthan most observers do, but he’s not wrong about the trend’s significance.

Ohhhhhkay then.  So health costs have gone down (sharply?) yet they are high enough that Wal-Mart must stop offering coverage for some of its part-time employees.  My head is spinning here.  I guess the good thing for the Wal-Mart employees affected is that they will be able to look for health care on the exchanges since they won’t have company-sponsored insurance any longer.  After all, Wal-Mart has got to watch that bottom line, especially if any of the Wal-Mart heirs still have company stock.  And speaking of those Wal-Mart heirs…

When people speak of the uber-rich, they surely have the Wal-Mart heirs in mind.

Consider the Wal-Mart heirs: Since 1983, their net worth has increased a staggering 6,700 percent. According to a report released last week by the union-backed Economic Policy Institute, here’s how many American families earning the median income it would have taken to match the Waltons’ wealth in a given year:

  • In 1983, the Walton family’s net worth was $2.15 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 61,992 average American families, about the population of…Peoria, Arizona
  • In 1989, the Walton family’s net worth was $9.42 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 200,434 average American families, about the population of…Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • In 1992, the Walton family’s net worth was $23.8 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 536,631 average American families, about the population of…San Antonio, Texas
  • In 1998, the Walton family’s net worth was $48 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 796,089 average American families, about the population of…The State of New Mexico
  • In 2001, the Walton family’s net worth was $92.8 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 1,077,761 average American families, about the population of…Chicago, Illinois
  • In 2013, the Walton family’s net worth was $144.7 billion, equivalent to the net worth of 1,782,020 average American families, about the population of…The State of Louisiana

I just have to wonder if that’s what Mr. Sam had in mind.

Okay, this is an open thread.  Talk amongst yourselves (if you wish!).




Good afternoon Widdershins.

Last week there was a story that passed without much notice.  There was a big headline, but without some context the story generated little more than a collective yawn — much akin to trying to understand the plotline of Basic Instinct by focusing on the undergarment choices of Sharon Stone’s character during the interrogation scene.

The focus of the story was the enormity of Wall Street bonuses.  The bonuses for 2013 were sufficient to basically Wall St. sign is seen in New York's financial districtdouble the earnings of every American minimum wage worker.  That was the headline, but as with most things the most intriguing aspects were more nuanced.

The total reported amount of 2013 bonuses for Wall Streeters was $26.7 Billion.  The bonuses were up by 15% for the fifth consecutive year of record profits since 2008 for the same Wall Street guys and gals who wrapped the economy in aluminum foil and promptly microwaved it.  That same $26.7 Billion would effectively double the wages of the 1,085,000 American workers paid the federal minimum wage.  Now the rest of the story and what we can learn from it.

The $26.7 Billion was limited to just those Wall Streeters employed in New York City since the data was collected by the New York Controller.  It did not include any bonuses paid to bank employees or traders outside the city.  It included neither stock options nor any deferred compensation.  Suffice it to say, with the huge “off site” operations of the Wall Street banks and their convoluted compensation structuring, the $26 Billion was merely a tantalizing leg crossing to divert our attention from the basic instinct of Wall Street.  To engage in a little zero-degree separation of Michael Douglas films, “Greed is good.”

The headline doesn’t do justice to the real importance of the story.  This unbridled concentration of wealth might be great for the Ferrari dealerships and the Patek Phillipe watch salespeople, but it is an all too alluring incentive for the continued high-risk behavior putting the entire financial system at risk.

Wall Street Bonuses versus All Minimum Wage WorkersIt is also bad for the economy.  Here’s why — it clearly demonstrates the harm to the economy from the enormous disparities of income inequality.  Every dollar paid to the people who harvest our food, cook, clean, manicure our yards, care for our children or our parents adds $1.21 to the economy.  Every dollar paid to the likes of these Wall Street warriors adds only $0.39 to the economy.

Therein lies the paucity of “trickle down” supply side economic theory that has worked irreparable long-term harm to our economy.  It’s as simple as this — no matter if you eat brown beans or Beluga caviar, you can only eat so much.  If you wear a threadbare cloth coat or cashmere, you can only wear one coat at a time.  If you drive a 1990s Ford or a 2014 Ferrari, you can only hold one steering wheel at a time.

Low wage workers must spend to live, while high wage workers sock it away as a badge of deluded self-worth.  There isn’t any miraculous mass trickle down.  There isn’t an invisible pent-up demand.  As for supply, it is adequate to satisfy the whims of the moneyed when it comes to the likes of coffee beans steeped in the digestive juices of the Sumatran civet and plucked from their feces.

As Robert Reich points out, fifty-years ago the largest employer was General Motors and the typical worker was paid $35.00 an hour.  Today, the largest employer is Wal-Mart and the typical worker is paid $8.80 an hour.  We too often dismiss the present day retail worker for the romantics of the auto line worker, but when comparing their educational attainment it is similar, their physical demands of standing for long periods of time are similar, and their uses of technology are similar.  The two workers are only separated by five decades and one-fourth the hourly earnings power.

The great irony is through government transfer payments, we have empowered both the worker and the moneyed We All Do Betterclass.  We have empowered the kings of Walton mountain to capture low wage earners in the revolving door of non-subsistence level jobs while rigging the system into rewarding the rarefied kings with riches so plentiful they would embarrass Croesus.  We are complicit in this insanity not only through unwitting political empowerment — we are actually footing the bill.  Paying for it to the detriment of the overall economy and our own long-term interests.

Remember fenfluramine/phentermine, the diet wonder drug known as fen phen that everyone craved.  It was all the rage until the long-term adverse effects of heart disease and heart valve damage became clear.  Thirty-years of supply-side economics is no better than the fen phen phenomenon — a seemingly miraculous panacea all the rage until the long-term effects finally cripple and kill.

This is an open thread.

Here at TW, we’ve done a few pieces on Wal-Mart. The company’s practices are the epitome of soulless corporate greed: they practice pay sexism, they don’t give their employees lunch breaks, they force them to work overtime, and they ensure that they manipulate the laws so that their employees don’t get health insurance or other important benefits.

Well, it looks like the last straw was trying to make them work on Thanksgiving, a time when they should be with their families instead of slaving away for The Man. The workers of Wal-Mart decided to strike. If you can’t form a union officially, then unite!

As Black Friday nears, Walmart workers and community supporters are beginning 1,000 nationwide non-violent protests leading up to and on Black Friday, including strikes, rallies, flash mobs, direct action and other efforts to inform customers about the illegal actions that Walmart has been taking against its workers. As part of the protests, Walmart workers walked off the job Tuesday morning in Pico Rivera, just outside Los Angeles, in protest against the company’s attempts to silence workers who speak out for better jobs. In October, the workers in Pico Rivera were the first group of Walmart associates to go on strike in the company’s history.

The actions are going on, rolling throughout the country, from California to DC.  All the workers are asking for is a fair shake and a chance to support themselves by earning a living wage. Turns out, Wal-Mart could make small changes that would have a very big effect on both its employees, and the economy.

As workers and community supporters call for changes at Walmart, a new report from the national public policy center Demos, shows that better jobs at Walmart and other large retailers would have an impact on our economy. A wage floor equivalent of $25,000 per year for a full-time, year-round employee for retailers with more than 1000 employees would lift 1.5 million retail workers and their families out of poverty or near poverty, add to economic growth, increase retail sales and create over 100,000 new jobs. The findings in the study prove there is a flaw in the conventional thinking by companies like Walmart that profits, low prices and decent wages cannot co-exist.

It’s not as though the low wages are increasing company profits exponentially. In fact, it’s not keeping up with other retailers like Target, and it’s underperforming industry expectations. But that doesn’t keep the company’s owners, the Walton family, from raking in the big bucks. Christy Walton and her family are worth tens of billions of dollars. It’s truly disgusting, the way these shameless, worthless excuses for human beings keep their employees in poverty and misery, while they rake in more money than they could possibly spend. In fact, they’re so rich that their combined wealth is greater than the bottom 42% of Americans. This massive bounty is shared amongst only six people!

What’s going to happen on Black Friday if the workers don’t come in? I don’t know, but I am so proud of these brave people who are standing up for their rights, despite Wal-Mart’s attempts to silence them. And if you want to support them too, you can go here:

This is an open thread.

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Blog Archive

January 2019
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Kellyanne Conway’s new job

Take the kids to work? NO!

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
24 months to go.

Mueller Time!

Wise Words from Paul Ryan


Only the *best* politicans bought by the NRA

Marching for their lives

Perfect Picture

Rudy: oh shit the pee tape IS real!

Need Reminders?

Never too early to shop for Christmas

“Look this way”

Manafort’s Jail Photo

Indeed who?

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IOW Dumb = Happy?

Simply Put


Awrite! Here’s your damned wall