Walmart's Sustainability Gambit

Al Norman's got an interesting piece on the pace of Walmart growth, over at Huffington Post:
Wal-Mart holds a Wall St. analyst's meeting every October---right before Halloween---to announce its growth projection plans for the year. Wal-Mart opponents applauded the company's announcement this week that it would continue to slow down the production of new stores.

Even the Bentonville Behemoth's cheering section, aka the Murdoch Street Journal, notes this trend in financial-speak:
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) sees fiscal-year capital spending at the low end of its reduced expectations and said such expenditures might not increase next year. The retail giant continues to ratchet back its once-breakneck growth and focus on nurturing existing stores.

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Walmart's Faux Greening = McCain's Faux Change

If Walmart is a green company then John McCain is a candidate of change. Both are ridiculous suggestions, and both are being propagated by these two antiquated refuges of Republican America.

McCain, for his part, is suddenly casting himself as an agent of change after spending the last two years cozying up and currying favors from the Bush-Rove-Falwell axis.

And Walmart?  Well, the world's largest retailer has launched a much-ballyhooed greening initiative that has won acclaim from everyone from the Wall Street Journal to Bill Clinton.

Just to be fair, let's take them at their word for second - Maybe McCain and Walmart read some polls and learned that, wow, people want change and want to go green.  

But even if that's the case, it doesn't make them the gold standard.  They've still got a lot of atoning to do.

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Manufacturing Tuesday or Monday part deux!


Yesterday I had hit on the situation going on with the automakers.  Originally, I had intended to include some other stories, but the first piece was large enough (perhaps too large?) that I realized that I had to push the other pieces. Well, as promised, we got some interesting stuff. First on the auto front a cool piece on zero emission cars.  Next we got fallout from biofuels and water preservation.  Third, it seems the Chinese aren't so thirsty for the black stuff right now. Lastly could the current woes Australia's mining sector tell us something?

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mediaFail: Green and Goldberg Editions.

(cross posted at kickin it with cg)

In the ongoing series of blogs about the mediaFail™ there are two ripe, juicy examples ready to be plucked.

The first involves Joshua Green, senior editor at The Atlantic and author of the latest hit job on Hillary Clinton.  Having worked for some serious publications, like the Washington Monthly and American Prospect, where he perpetuated lies such as: Al Gore is a serial exaggerator who said he invented the internet. Green suggests that his analysis of the Clinton memos is the "empirical truth" and was billed fantastically by fellow Altantic columnist Marc Ambinder as "the story of what really happened."

With clear disdain, Green also refers to Clinton's famed majority female staff as a "bitchy staff" which "proved to be her Achilles' heel." In spite of Hillary's bitchy staff, the vast majority of Green's piece focuses on the men in her campaign, most especially Mark Penn.  Green complains that "the candidate herself evinced a paralyzing schizophrenia -- one day a shots-'n'-beers brawler, the next a Hallmark Channel mom." 

Next up is National Review Online editor-at-large Jonah Goldberg.  In his August 15 syndicated column, headlined "Nightmare on Dem Street," Goldberg wrote of former President Bill Clinton and Sen. Hillary Clinton's appearances at the Democratic National Convention: "Bill and Hillary are back. And forever more, Barack Obama won't be able to take a shower without fear of that curtain snapping back, as a woman -- or is that a man? -- prepares to plunge the knife into his back." Another journalist suggesting that the Clintons would use violence against Obama and other political opponents.

As MediaMatters notes:

Goldberg also compared the Clintons to fictional horror movie characters Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, and Dracula, writing: "Freddy Krueger always comes back. Jason re-emerges from the pond one more time. Dracula had so many comebacks, nobody was surprised to see him hanging with Abbott and Costello." Additionally, Goldberg wrote: "If the monster-movie thing is too offensive for you Clinton voluptuaries out there, think of it like this: They're like Richard Gere in 'An Officer and a Gentleman' (who, coincidentally, is hounded by a charismatic black dude but never gives up)." He added:

They've got no place else to go. And I was right. The Clintons are back. The coffin lid has sprung open, the seal of the crypt has been broken, the mutant virus has escaped the lab. Both Clintons will speak at the Democratic convention, and Hillary will get her I-told-you-so's. In the horror flicks, it's not that the creatures are impervious to damage, it's that no matter how much you hack them up, they seem to come back again. And again. And again. The Clintons have been horribly damaged, but they press on.

Who the hell are these clowns?  

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All of the Above, My Friends

John McCain talks a lot about energy. It's one of the issues he hopes will win this election for him. He likes to talk about how his energy plan for America includes "all of the above." Maybe at some point in the past, McCain did actually care about energy that we didn't dig out of the ground, but today the truth is that he has become indistinguishable from his Republican congressional colleagues, a friend to the oil companies who thinks that if he uses the word 'green' enough, the American people will not bother to examine his record.

He puts images of windmills in his advertisements and pays lip service to renewables in his speeches, but seems unwilling to back his talk up with substance. The entirety of the GOP plan which he has made his own is summed up by his call at the Sturgis rally to "drill here, drill now", with a thousand motorcycles revving in the background. If he really cared about green energy, why has he missed the vote 8 times in the past year on a vital bill to renew the investment tax credits that renewable technologies desperately need to compete with fossil fuels? John McCain is blatantly greenwashing his record and his policies, when in reality they're nothing but an glass of texas tea with a lump of coal for garnish.

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