Thursday, January 31, 2008

Hillary Clinton Stayed Silent as Walmart Busted Unions

Hillary Clinton stayed silent during more than 20 Walmart board meetings where they discussed their union busting tactics, referred to them as parasites and reiterated their plan to stop them at all costs. This is one of those things you figured was probably the case, but you just assumed could never be proved. Thank you ABC news and the magic of video...
In six years as a member of the Wal-Mart board of directors, between 1986 and 1992, Hillary Clinton remained silent as the world's largest retailer waged a major campaign against labor unions seeking to represent store workers.
Wal-Mart's anti-union efforts were headed by one of Clinton's fellow board members, John Tate, a Wal-Mart executive vice president who also served on the board with Clinton for four of her six years.

Tate was fond of repeating, as he did at a managers meeting in 2004 after his retirement, what he said was his favorite phrase, "Labor unions are nothing but blood-sucking parasites living off the productive labor of people who work for a living."
Wal-Mart says Tate's comments "were his own and do not reflect Wal-Mart's views."

But Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton and other company officials often recounted how they relied on Tate to lead the company's successful anti-union efforts. An ABC News analysis of the videotapes of at least four stockholder meetings where Clinton appeared shows she never once rose to defend the role of American labor unions.
A former board member told that he had no recollection of Clinton defending unions during more than 20 board meetings held in private.

The tapes show Clinton in the role of a loyal company woman. "I'm always proud of Wal-Mart and what we do and the way we do it better than anybody else," she said at a June 1990 stockholders meeting.
I know what you're thinking, I mean... it was the 80s. Give her a break, everybody did a little union busting back then. It wasn't as bad as everyone made it out to be. And besides, we need to give her credit for these 6 years of "fighting for change" busting unions on Walmart's board, because otherwise that screws up the whole 35 years of change thing. And well, if you pull a number out of your ass and then someone has the nerve to call you out on lying about it, what fun is that? Well the important thing was that this union busting was just a youthful indiscretion, and now is behind her. It's not like she surrounds herself with these people or has them in key positions in her inner circle.
Oh right, never mind. Well at least she's cut off these dealings with Walmart, right? RIGHT??? UUGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! How bad can this get?
According to the New York Times, Sen. Clinton "maintains close ties to Wal-Mart executives through the Democratic Party and the tightly knit Arkansas business community." The May 20, 2007 article also reported that her husband, former President Clinton, "speaks frequently to Wal-Mart's current chief executive, H. Lee Scott Jr." and held a private dinner at the Clinton's New York home in July 2006 for him.
If after crap like this comes out and people still can't choose between Clinton and Obama... then it's a pretty bleak outlook for the future of the progressive movement.

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