Sun-Times torpedoes flawed anti-WalMart study

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Sun-Times to WalMart critics: Fire One

This is one great editorial, taking issue with a Loyola University and University of Illinois at Chicago study claiming that Chicago's first and only WalMart on the West Side has been an economic bummer for the community.

The editorial started:

The folks who don't want any more Wal-Marts in Chicago like to paint the superstore as the root of all evil.

Recently, they've latched on to a new study of Chicago's first Wal-Mart, in Austin, as further evidence of the unique kind of pain Wal-Mart inflicts on Americans.

There's just one problem.

The study's anti-Wal-Mart conclusions don't add up.

It gets better after that.


It's well researched and balanced. What I also liked about it is the way the Sun-Times editorial board dissected the study. Rarely do the media question such studies, preferring instead to simply reprint the conclusions.

Way to go Tom McNamme and the rest of the editorial board.

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  • I've been following the Chicago Wal-Mart saga with interest because a Wal-Mart saga has been playing out in rural Nebraska where my sister is a Lutheran pastor. The basic plot is the same: Should Wal-Mart come in or be kept out? The stories appear to have different outcomes, or potential outcomes.

    In Chicago, Wal-Mart seems to have a valid case for providing shopping access and jobs in an area that lacks both. Unions oppose Wal-Mart for a variety of reasons, including the infamous Wal-Mart low pay scle.

    in Nebraska, Wal-Mart approached the small Missouri River town of Nebraska City with a proposal to put a store on the town's outskirts. Jobs and increased tax revenue were featured in Wal-Mart's presentation. The town council debated and dithered, and Wal-Mart made an offer they couldn't refuse--if Nebraska City turned Wal-Mart down, Wal-Mart would build across the river in Iowa and drive all of the Nebraska City merchants out of business. The town council caved in, Wal-Mart built and opened its store, and in about a year most of Nebraska City small businesses were driven out of business. Many of them were merchants who had brought business to Nebraska City for four generations. Many of the small buusinessmen and their employes now apply for $10 an hour jobs at Wal-Mart.

    My sister is close to this because most of the people affected are members of the church where she is pastor.

    It remains to be seen how the story will play out in Chicago.

  • Do you have a hyperlink to this study or even the sun-times article you're referring to? I have a hard time blindly following what conservative bloggers say when they don't cite their sources.

  • In reply to RyanJustice:

    Sorry, I overlooked the link. Nevermind

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