New York City’s Public Advocate, Bill de Blasio, and the Coalition for Accountability in Political Spending (CAPS) have put together a nifty online chart called 6 Degrees of Walmart. It’s actually more than a chart – think of it as a kind of star finder that allows the user to locate eight constellations of alleged corporate malfeasance and consumer abuse committed by the retail giant. Click on its Gun icon and you’ll find out how Walmart, through its support of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), backs Stand Your Ground laws. Click the Dollar sign and you’ll learn how Walmart colludes with the Business Roundtable and others to protect corporate tax subsidies.
(Please note: The above image is not interactive; to interact, go to the 6 Degrees of Walmart site.)
There’s also an explanation of how Walmart tries to burnish its environmental and corporate responsibility cred through its “sustainability program” – while simultaneously supporting “the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a leader in the fight to roll-back the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions and cut funding for the Environmental Protection Agency.”
The de Blasio/CAPS project comes with a call to action – support for a shareholder resolution forcing Walmart to publicly reveal its political campaign contributions. If the resolution were to pass at the company’s annual shareholders meeting June 1, it would no doubt result in Walmart’s massive list of economic interests and political spear carriers being made public. Now that’s a chart we’d like to see online.