Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Walker Agenda Is Still Working! Part CCVIII

Ah yes, more good news for Scott Walker's agenda - the Kmart in Portage is closing its doors in April, impacting 78 full and part time employees.  Although Kmart officials wouldn't come out and say why they were closing, the article makes it fairly obvious that they were struggling since Walmart came into town and opened one of their Supercenters.

But the reporters who wrote this article, Jen McCoy and Shannon Green, also shone a light on a different perspective that I don't recall seeing anywhere else before.

When stories like this appear, the focus is always on the poor workers who are losing their jobs. Often, there is a quote from a city leader about the impact the closing and layoffs will have on the local economy.

But McCoy and Green included a third facet to the story - how it affects the customers:
The announcement of the closing also disappoints Scott Tomczak of rural Poynette, who said he shops at Kmart three times per month.

“I’d much rather come here (to Kmart) than Walmart,” Tomczak said outside of Kmart on Friday afternoon.

JoAnn Wingers of Randolph said she drives to Portage to shop at the Kmart store.

“I’m very disappointed, because I’d rather shop here than at Walmart,” Wingers said.

Once the store is closed in Portage, she will still not shop at Walmart, she said.

The closest Kmarts to Portage will be in Mauston and Ripon after the closure.

Rumors of Kmart closing swirled for years after Walmart Supercenter opened at 2950 New Pinery Road. However, shoppers said Kmart had a dedicated customer base.

“I personally think the community did not want to see Kmart leave and there’s a lot of people who are very loyal customers. I would deliberately go there … I’m still shopping there at this moment,” Malone said. “I just wish everyone the best, finding a job and I hope things go well for them, but I can tell them that in person.”
This has been the modus operandi for Walmart for decades.

They move into a smaller community, using up taxpayer money on TIFs and other giveaways - because they're creating jobs, donchano? - and drive out all the competition, whether it be a bigger chain like Kmart or Sears or the local mom and pop type of stores. They feed off the community until it's no longer profitable enough and pull out leaving a lot of people out of work and a big empty box where the store used to be.

Fortunately, it appears from this story that at least some people are starting to wake up and are no longer tolerating it. Hopefully that will carry through and continue to grow through the fall when we can make a strong stand against the corporate special interests and the puppets that serve them, like Scott Walker.


  1. It really burns me that Walmart can do this, if you price shop K-Mart had a lot of stuff at lower prices. Don Taylor, Poynette. K-Mart will truly be missed

  2. Solar Ascendancy: Minnesota Court Ruling for Solar over Gas a Harbinger of Things to Come

    In short, Minnesota gets large solar generation project while Wisconsin gets a big, drunken Republican kiss.

  3. Walmart not only has low prices from their distribution network, but they also name their own prices to local vendors from the home office, often local vendors have to be willing to accept that price or not get their product into the store. Even at a loss of profit to local suppliers.

    All while everyone else in competition with Walmart pays the standard vendor costs per products.