Basha Warns of Economic Blitzkrieg

Discussion
Feb 09, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson


Eddie Basha, chief executive of the Bashas’ grocery chain claims Wal-Mart is carrying out what amounts to an economic blitzkrieg with practices that drive competitors out of
business and forces other employers to pay below livable wages to stay in business.


“In the scheme of things, they exploit and take advantage of their people,” Mr. Basha told the Arizona Republic. “That’s not my idea of citizenship.”


Mr. Basha said his stores lose 10 to 20 percent of sales when a new Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market opens in the same trading area.


He thinks consumers and society are sacrificing long-term prosperity for short-term savings when they shop at Wal-Mart.


“In the broad scope of things, Wal-Mart will cost you more.” Mr. Basha later added, “To our family and our philosophy, richness is defined in a different way.”


Moderator’s Comment: Do you agree with Eddie Basha’s assessment of Wal-Mart’s negative
impact on the well-being of American business, workers and society?


We’ve long admired what Mr. Basha’s business has achieved in Arizona, which may explain our disappointment at his trotting out the “evil empire” speech
to criticize Wal-Mart.


The folks in Bentonville are not performing some type of retailing miracle and there are plenty of companies, including Harp’s in Wal-Mart’s own backyard,
that thrive in direct competition with the world’s largest retail merchant.
George
Anderson – Moderator

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