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Posts Tagged ‘wages’

The following is a response I recently sent to an email that was forwarded to me.  The email included a number of quotations of sales figures of Walmart (with what appeared to be old numbers) comparing them to other chains and eventually criticizing government operations going on in the present. From what I could tell it was praise of Walmart in light of all the demonization going on by the progressive left. But I expanded on it a bit.

From the original email:

  1. Americans spend $36,000,000 at Wal-Mart Every hour of every day.
  2. This works out to $20,928 profit every minute!
  3. Wal-Mart will sell more from January 1 to St. Patrick’s Day (March 17th) than Target sells all year.
  4. Wal-Mart is bigger than Home Depot + Kroger + Target +Sears + Costco + K-Mart combined.
  5. Wal-Mart employs 1.6 million people, is the world’s largest private employer, and most speak English.
  6. Wal-Mart is the largest company in the history of the world.
  7. Wal-Mart now sells more food than Kroger and Safeway combined, and  keep in mind they did this in only fifteen years.
  8. During this same period, 31 big supermarket chains sought bankruptcy.
  9. Wal-Mart now sells more food than any other store in the world.
  10. Wal-Mart has approx 3,900 stores in the USA of which 1,906 are Super Centers; this is 1,000 more than it had five years ago.
  11. This year 7.2 billion different purchasing experiences will occur at Wal-Mart stores. (Earth’s population is approximately 6.5 Billion.)
  12. 90% of all Americans live within fifteen miles of a Wal-Mart.

I then went on to add:

Here’s some other numbers. Walmart currently employs 2.1 million people worldwide. For those of you counting, that amounts to about 1.5% of all the working people (amounting to 140 million) in the country. i.e. if we had about 9 more companies like Walmart, there would be no unemployment right now. The average wage of those employees is not high, but the average skill needed to work at a Walmart isn’t incredibly complex. The average is about $11.75 per hour. (the national average for retail employees is right about $12 per hour, but Walmart also has many programs that involve part-time employment of retirees and special ‘needs’ people. This average is also well above the federal minimum wage of $7.25)

The national poverty line is currently at $22,000 which would also place the annual wage of walmart ($20,744) slightly below that amount, but they also offer benefits and profit share programs to many of their full-time employees. But one should also consider that if a single household has two people working at Walmart making the average wage, that places the total household income above $40,000 per year, well into the so-called ‘middle class’.

Just for sake of argument though, Walmart did post $15 billion in profit last year. So perhaps they should increase wages. With 2.1 million employees and annual (net profit) earnings of 15 billion, if they spent every cent of their profits on raises, that would amount to a great big whopping $3.50 per hour raising the average annual earnings of each employee to $29,000 per year.

Of course, large corporations don’t exist to post no profit. Stockholders don’t buy stock to have no earnings.

So how’s about some other numbers? The US government spends $121,000 dollars per second. To pay for this, they have to borrow $52,000 every second. This means that in 1 minute, the US government eats up $7,264,020 in money that otherwise could have been profits for companies such as Walmart. That’s $435,841,200 per hour, $10,460,188,800 per day.

And of course, the government doesn’t exist to post any profit. So what are they paying as an average salary from all this money they are spending from other people’s productivity? The average federal employee made about $68,000 per year in 2008. And we are upset at Walmart? For what? Making money? THOSE BASTARDS!

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I’m surprised no one has been making as much noise with the numbers while the whole occupy thing has been going on. I was busy with doing things on the new job or I would have got to this sooner, but I think it’s about time to take a look at just what that infernal 1% is doing. The OWS folks like to tell us that the rich need to pay more, that they don’t pay their fair share, etc. So what are they actually paying?

Let’s start by looking at the 99% shall we? Wikipedia reports that the median household income in the US in 2009 as we were barely eeking out of the latest recession was right around $50,000/yr. In that same year, those making that much or below were only paying a sum total of about 10% [1] of the total tax burden in this country. This is despite them making up about 59.5% of the total workforce [2].  Those making less than $32,000/yr account for more than 50% of the total population and are only responsible for less 2.25% of all taxes paid.

So who’s carrying the burden? Let’s climb the scales a little higher shall we? The top 10% of wage earners were responsible for paying over 70% of all income taxes paid in the year 2009. (Keep in mind, these numbers are ‘income tax paid’. These numbers do not reflect taxes upon corporate earnings prior to them being paid out as salaries or distributed as dividends to shareholders) This is just ‘income’. But lets go a little higher.

The top 5% carried the weight of  almost 60% (58.66) of all income taxes paid! So 95% of the US working population only paid 41.44% of total taxes paid. And what about that nasty, dirty, rotten, good-for-nothing 1%?

The top 1% of wage earners carried 36.73% of the total national income tax burden in 2009. Those evil rotten bastards!!! I just have to ask the question, if they aren’t paying enough (especially considering this doesn’t account for double-taxation on corporate earnings), how much is too much?

[1] “Who Pays the Income Tax?” – National Tax Payers Union
[2] “Money Income of People” – US Census Bureau

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