Saturday, May 28, 2005

Is shopping at Wal-Mart immoral?

MSN Money offers this analysis of the morality of shopping at Wal-Mart. I commend this story to anyone who has any feelings about the matter. Like most issues, the pros and cons are much more complicated than the people who are yelling the loudest would like the rest of us to think they are.
Disclosure: I have to drive at least half an hour to get to a Wal-Mart. Even with that distance to drive, it saves me a great deal of money. I can't imagine being able to afford living in Maine without one. Clothing, oil filters, some groceries and even the mailers that I use to send out comics I sell on eBay are much more expensive if I buy them from any other merchant.
One line that surprized me greatly:
Shunned by some investors concerned about its antiunion attitudes and environmental impact, the chain nevertheless appeared in the portfolios of 33 socially responsible investment (SRI) funds in that same year, according to a study by the Natural Capital Institute.
So anybody out there who is into "socially responsible" investing should take the time to read those prospecti and periodical reports.
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