Fuzzy Math that Would Make Enron Execs Blush

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Who would you say is the most repugnant corporation in American corporate history?  Is it Enron, who gave record amounts to the Bush-Cheney machine and bankrupt millions of investors?  Halliburton, the shameless war profiteer?  Or Wal-Mart, the company that has done more than any other to drive down wages in America and has set a new low for how it treats its employees?

It's a tough choice.  The competition is fierce.  But lately I think Wal-Mart has been giving the others a run for their money, especially when it comes to cooking the books, deceiving the public with smoke-and-mirror statistics, and generally screwing over citizens and taxpayers.  It's no secret that Wal-Mart treats its employees horribly, but Progress Ohio has uncovered troublesome data showing that the retailer is costing the Buckeye State taxpayers tens of millions on health care and welfare.  

You see, Wal-Mart claims that only 2.6% of their workforce and their dependents rely on Medicaid – that appears to be a flat-out lie. If Wal-Mart's figure is correct, we would expect only 1,385 Ohio employees to be on Medicaid.  However, more than 15,000 of Wal-Mart's Ohio employees and their dependents are on the program.  Unless Wal-Mart's Medicaid enrollees have 10 dependents each, Wal-Mart's official number is suspect beyond reasonable doubt.

That's a lot of dough in a state that is under a lot of economic stress.  Wal-Mart makes billions each year and Ohio is suffering mightily, yet Wal-Mart would rather enrich executives (4 out of 10 of the richest Americans are Waltons) and send billions to China rather than provide decent benefits to hard working Americans in Ohio.  What is wrong with this picture?

If this concerns you as much as it does me, please join me at WakeUpWalmart.com  to help get our priorities straight in Ohio and America once again.  

The Ohio Benefits Report has been altered from the original publication. Appropriate changes were made to this diary to reflect those changes on Oct. 6, 2009.

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