We all know Walmart is evil for stuff like underpaying and overworking employees, using sweatshop labor, and plunging entire towns into the economic toilet, but that’s just the tip of the corrupt iceberg. Behind the cold, dead eyes of that yellow smiley face lurks a well of depravity where cutting costs is king and the people don’t matter.

And the Elderly and Disabled

In 2005, CNN got ahold of a memo sent by a Walmart vice president who was “troubled” by the loyalty and dedication of the company’s “least healthy, least productive associates” (seriously, she said they were “more satisfied with their benefits than other segments” and “interested in longer careers with Walmart” as if that was a bad thing) and wanted to “attract a healthier, more productive workforce” to avoid paying so much for health benefits. Basically, if you can be discriminated against, Walmart would love to do so.

They Bully Employees Electronically

Walmart maintains a deliberate skeleton crew to extract the most labor out of each employee, which is why half of their shelves are always bare. They even have an electronic system tracking each task, telling them “we should be done already or we’re taking too long,” according to one employee.

They Turned Down Free Safety Equipment

(P.L./Unsplash)

Walmart has gotten into hot water over the years for the lack of automated external defibrillators (you know, those big suitcases hanging on the walls of various buildings with all those medical symbols on them) in their stores after people, surprise, surprise, had heart attacks there. In 2011, a Missouri health organization offered to provide a local Walmart where a man had died of a heart attack with a free AED, and they turned it down.

They Took Out Life Insurance Policies on Employees

Many employers offer life insurance to their staff, but until 1995, Walmart was taking out secret life insurance policies on even the lowest levels of their employees, getting tax deductions for the premiums, and cashing in when they died. We’re not saying they were intentionally working people to death, but we’re not not saying that.

They Fueled the Opioid Epidemic

Pills

(Hal Gatewood/Unsplash)

It turns out that Walmart pharmacies had such a heavy hand in encouraging the opioid epidemic -- filling invalid prescriptions, failing to report suspicious orders, etc. -- that the Department of Justice sued them for billions of dollars in 2020. Did you even know the Department of Justice could sue corporations? Why don’t they do that more often?

Top image: George Bush Presidential Library and Museum/Wikimedia Commons

Get the Cracked Daily Newsletter!

We've got your morning reading covered.

Forgot Password?