Owen and Fullerton are desperately trying to protect the Walton family from Measure R

One of the big local wage abusers, that are the focus of Measure R in Eureka, is Wal-Mart. Just read this Reuters story and just see how despicable this filthy rich Walton family is. These are the Oligarchs that Matthew Owen and John Fullerton are trying to protect in their scurrilous anti-R ad campaign. Funded with at least 10,000 in dark money.
This year Rob, Jim and Alice Walton are projected to receive an estimated $3.16 Billion dollars in dividends from their inherited shares of Wal-Mart.  If they were actually working for an hourly wage, that would work out to $1.5 million dollars an hour.  The average Wal-Mart employee earns $8.81 per hour.

(Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the biggest U.S. private sector employer, said on Tuesday that its 1.3 million workers would have to pay more for healthcare and it would end benefits for some part-time staff in a move that could prompt other companies to follow suit.tycoon

The world’s largest retailer said it would raise health insurance premiums for its entire U.S. workforce beginning in January. In addition, Wal-Mart will end coverage for employees who work fewer than 30 hours a week, a change that will impact 2 percent of U.S. workers, or about 30,000 people.

The move comes as U.S. companies brace for a January 2015 deadline under the Affordable Care Act. Starting then, companies with 50 or more employees will have to offer health insurance to those working at least 30 hours a week, a mandate that has drawn criticism from some companies worried about higher costs. (Cutting into their massive profits)

Wal-Mart said the move would bring it in line with many of its competitors. Target Corp and Home Depot Inc recently announced cuts to benefits in light of the Affordable Care Act.

According to consulting firm Mercer, 62 percent of large retailers did not offer health-care benefits to part-time workers as of 2013, a comparatively high rate that reflects low wages and high turnover in the industry. That figure drops to 37 percent for companies overall.

Brian Yarbrough, an analyst at Edward Jones, said the decision by Wal-Mart could force other retailers to rethink what benefits they provide.

All retailers are “trying to cut expenses, to keep things lean,” Yarbrough said. “At some point you start looking across the board, and this is probably the next place to start looking at cuts.”

Some big retailers, such as coffee chain Starbucks Corp and Costco offer health coverage to part-time employees.

Critics of Wal-Mart’s decision said it would primarily hurt lower-income workers, many of whom are being left behind in the economic recovery.

“Taking away access to healthcare, even though many of my co-workers couldn’t afford it anyway, is just another example of Walmart manipulating the system to keep workers like me in a state of financial crisis,” Nancy Reynolds, a cashier at a Wal-Mart in Florida and member of Our Walmart, a group pushing for better wages and benefits, said in an email from the group.

Of Wal-Mart’s 1.3 million U.S. employees, the company said 1.2 million currently elect to be covered under the company’s health insurance plans.

The company said it was changing some eligibility terms for part-time employees working more than 30 hours a week, but did not provide details.

Full story here:

https://news.yahoo.com/wal-mart-stop-healthcare-benefits-part-time-workers-145535493–finance.html

And just to add more misery to the situation:

Hospitals ask patients to pay upfront:

http://money.cnn.com/2014/09/29/news/economy/hospitals-deductibles-payments-patients/index.html?iid=EL

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48 thoughts on “Owen and Fullerton are desperately trying to protect the Walton family from Measure R

  1. If your business model requires that to be successful you must pay your employees less than a living wage (and they need public assistance to make up the difference) you should close your business and get a job.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Well said. I was just thinking the same thing this am as I was pondering positions and comments by Fred M., John F. et al.

      We are desperately seeking to encourage businesses with what business model? And this is supposed to help whom?

      Liked by 2 people

  2. It is hard to beat Wal-Mart and make them pay workers more or give benefits. They used to keep workers under 40 hrs/wk to prevent them from being eligible to receive employer-paid healthcare. Now they will do the same with the 30. Their store staffing makes it just as easy for them to have 100 people work 16 hrs/wk as having 50 who work 32 hrs/wk. But the article is not about Measure R or minimum wage. I wonder if big box stores have sliding scale benefits in their employee contracts so they can calculate wage plus benefit value and cap it to justify cutting benefits at a store with a higher minimum wage requirement.

    Like

  3. The pro Measure R folks seemed to have been aiming at Walmart and instead shot Eureka’s local businesses. There is no “dark” money, that is childish. Over 110 people have donate to the Committee to Protect Eureka and four or five more checks are coming in every day. People can choose how much they want to donate.

    You would be surprised at how many liberals have donated. The doners include liberals & Republicans, conservatives, Democrats & Decline to States. The only thing we have in common is we love Eureka and understand how damaging Measure R will be to Eureka if it passes.

    If it passes a lot of Eureka’s businesses will be faced with a stark choice. Lay off employees, raises their prices (or both), move out of Eureka or close their doors. It is simple math. Hundreds of people could lose their jobs.

    Like

    • Why wouldn’t any of them donate $100 Joh? That is really odd unless there is a concerted effort to restrict donations to $100 or less. How odd is it?

      Take an average of 460’s in the County and City over the past 2 years. Take the unitemized total of donations <$100 and divide by the grand total for income (itemized (not anonymous) and non-itemized (annonymous)). I'm guessing you'd get a fraction around 10 to 20 to 30 percent max for the unitemized as a % of the grand total. 50 % would be an absurd exception. Again, a guess.

      No on R's total with you as the Treasurer – 10K/13K (ish) = 77 % annonymous. Outrageous.

      So, that is again an educated guess. What do you think will be the fraction of itemized vs unitemized for most campaigns? Do you disagree that such an inordinate amount of anonymous donations under $100 is the exception? Do you then disagree with the obvious conclusion that the liberals and Republicans donating are intentionally avoiding being counted? Why is that?

      Also, I'd really like to find out what makes a person a liberal if they disagree with a unified union vote on this. Should be interesting.

      Watch this space.

      Liked by 2 people

    • http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Getting-around-laws-on-election-funds-3276699.php

      “For their part, county central committees serve as conduits, taking money from donors and often writing checks to candidates soon after. Some of the most active central committees are in the state’s least-populous counties.
      In Humboldt County, for example, Democrats raised $55,200 in one day from the service employees union and other interest groups, then within a week dispensed $50,000 to state Senate candidate Hannah-Beth Jackson more than 600 miles away in Santa Barbara.”

      You should talk, liberal John.

      Liked by 1 person

    • “Lay off employees, raises their prices (or both), move out of Eureka or close their doors. ”

      John Fullerton left an option off of his list — any struggling employer is welcome to open their books to the people who make their business happen, and if those people agree that $12/hour would sink the business, they can all agree to a lower wage. It’s right in the text of the measure, but the opponents lie by omission.

      Liked by 3 people

  4. It could be that John Fullerton cares about his community. The Tuluwat apparently does not.This isn’t about Walmart. Most of us could give a damn about Walmart. I care about Visiting Angels not raising prices to take care of my mom. I can about less empty store fronts. I care that these stupid people were so focused on Walmart, they don’t care that KMart wasn’t affected.

    Like

    • Right. The TE hates the community. That’s why the TE has been supportive of a measure which would help the working poor of Eureka.

      If that’s how the TE hates, imagine what happen if they liked Eureka! Utopian paradise maybe?

      Liked by 4 people

    • Why do you think that people providing such a vital and valuable service should make less than a living wage? Is the work they do of less value than making pizzas? How can a person’s labor be worth less than the cost to keep them alive?

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sidelines…do you make a living wage? Can you somehow justify a business that not only does not pay a living wage, but in addition leaves its employees in need the option of taxpayer subsidies in the form of food stamps and medi-cal? To not recognize the simple wrongness of this speaks loud and clear your views on justice.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Yes. I make a living wage. I make $10.15 per hour. But that’s not the point. My employer has 23 employees. I won’t make any more unless I go work for Walmart. And I’m suppose to hope this will pass for more businesses next year when there are even fewer people who care??? The TE and Liberal Jon are off the rails on this one. I’ll be voting “No”. Why would you guys write a Measure that punishes certain employees in favor of others?? I have to pay more things, so Big Box employees can get a raise. No thanks. I guess as long as you get yours, all is good, yeah?

      Like

    • Well that’s a convenient statement. 23 employees, $10.15 an hour….I’ll just take your word for it Sidelines.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The justification “Another guy” is the business wants to stay in business. Also in the case of restaurants most workers are tipped. Many times the tips can double the employees wages.

      Like

  6. Most Eureka restaurants do not fall under Measure “R”, neither do most businesses.

    I can only think of 25 large employers that are directly effected, all the remainder will benefit from increased consumer activity due to the higher wages. In fact, if a $3/Hour increase is REALLY too much, Measure “R” allows large employers to collectively bargain another minimum wage with employees….(I know, after paying poverty wages for so long, who can stand to look into a young parent’s face, let alone, interact with them?).

    Mr. Fullerton has probably never operated a real business. It makes no sense whatsoever to incur the expenses, disruption, down time, and risk of moving to a nearby city because of a wage increase occurring ahead of increases that are mostly already mandated in Ca.

    Successful businesses rarely base big decisions on a single criteria, especially when Measure “R” could easily become a countywide effort with greater potential of passage.

    Mr. Fullerton’s deceitful scare tactics are disgraceful reminders of the counterproductive pinheads that also threatened unemployment and higher prices against Social Security, Air Bags, and the Affordable Care Act.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Once you start the personal attacks “Anonymous” you have already lost the debate.

      But you are wrong. Measure R defines an employee as anyone working more than 2 hours a week and includes seasonal workers. It also means 25 or more employees anywhere not just at a business’s Eureka location. Most of the stores at the Bayshore mall will fall under it. Restaurants that have a Arcata location and a Eureka location fall under R. There are dozens of businesses in Eureka that will be forced to make hard decisions if R passes. Many of those businesses aren’t even aware they fall under R.

      Your statement contains so many errors it is no wonder you hide behind “Anonymous”.

      BTW, you know nothing about my background. I started my first business at the age of 12 and except for a 8 year period I have been self employed my entire life.

      Like

    • Too many business owners feel it is their right to have the taxpayers subsidize their labor costs because they are “job creators.” That they smear the people as moochers and parasites (the 47%) who need those subsidies to survive and try to force cuts to the programs that subsidize their own work force makes them greedy, hypocritical exploiters. If you don’t like the names you are called, change your behavior.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. OldPlainJane, Yes the TE should change their behavior. Why are they backing a Measure that makes Walmart the best place to work? Angelo’s Pizza employees don’t deserve a living wage in your eyes. Just because there are 23 employees? You guys suck.

    Like

    • I would prefer at least a state-wide raise in minimum wage, Sidelines, and I’m sure virtually everyone on the pro-raise side does as well. Would you really prefer no one get a raise if everyone doesn’t? This is what is known as a compromise. As the increased wages from the larger employers trickle into main street businesses, and they will, your boss may share the increased revenue with you, or he may just keep it all for himself. If he decides to keep it all, you may have to get an initiative going to force all smaller businesses to increase their minimum as well.The theory is that employers will be forced to raise wages to keep quality employees or lose them to employers who pay a living wage.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Once again oldplainjane, I would prefer a raise that does not cause people to lose their jobs and one that does not hurt people on fixed incomes.

        Measure R is a job killer.

        Like

    • And I further would suggest if you are so worried about higher wages costing jobs or higher prices for fixed income people that you do your part and reduce your own wages to minimum, John Fullerton and Sidelines.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. We means test applicants for welfare to ensure they aren’t taking advantage of the system. We should be means testing any employer whose labor force is getting welfare. Make them stand in line at the welfare office with their financial records to prove that they are too needy to pay a living wage. The welfare, after all, is required due to their inability or unwillingness to pay a living wage. A business that can prove they can’t survive if they pay a living wage to their labor can get subsidies, the rest must raise their pay or do all the work themselves.

    Liked by 4 people

    • That’s a good idea and a fitting solution to the fear mongering that a living wage causes reduced economic activity.

      I realize its only a hypothetical proposal. But if it was seriously considered, it’d be very interesting to see how the applicant business owners justify their need for welfare.

      Liked by 3 people

    • And they could pay John Fullerton to do their paperwork and stand in line for them.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. OldPlaneJane, First of all the state did raise the minimum wage by $2.00 per hour. I will benefit from that, but not from this. Compromise?! You people screwed us over. If Measure R passes, we will never pass a countywide solution. You shouldn’t have to work at Walmart to get a raise.You didn’t have to compromise, and if you actually cared about workers, you would have included us.

    Like

    • I have no more responsibility for the language or parameters in this initiative than you do, Sidelines. Being a supporter doesn’t make me the author, idiot. When the largest employers in the community in any industry are forced to raise their wages, the smaller employers will follow suit or won’t have quality employees. It’s their choice and yours to continue working for an employer who is prospering on your labor while insulting you by paying you less than the cost of living and making you get welfare to subsidize his greed.

      Liked by 1 person

    • OldPlaneJane, You may not be the author, but you are pushing an ordinance that clearly screws over 80% of the working population. So my employer DOESN’T give me a raise. I have to pay more for everything or go work for Walmart so I can afford it. And hope that maybe my employer raises my wage so I don’t go to Walmart. Pulleeease. At least don’t pretend it is fair while pedal. This is the most unfair thing I’ve seen in a long time. And I cry foul that you are pretending this helps me.

      Like

    • I’m trying to figure out how someone else getting a raise and having more money to spend in the local economy “Screws me over.”

      If that’s true than I’m getting “Screwed over” a lot more by the owner of Walmart than I am by one of their minimum wage workers. I’m also trying to see how Measure R passing will prevent a county wide wage increase from happening.
      O wait, it won’t and the only reason that it hasn’t happened is because the PTB didn’t want it to happen.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. By the way, COSTCO already pays more than $12 per hour. Has that helped MY employer raise his payroll? “No”. That is a weak argument you are using to try and get by off from the 80% of us that WON’T be affected by Measure R, You don’t care about the 99%. You care about 6% of the 99%. Otherwise, this would be all employers, union or not!

    Like

    • If Costco didn’t pay more than minimum wage you might not even have a job. Your income is from other people having enough money to buy pizzas. If your boss sells more pizzas per hour he makes more money. Some of that money should end up in his workers’ pockets. If it doesn’t, the fault isn’t the increase in minimum wage but your boss’ greed. When you increase the pay of low paid workers they spend it, mostly on main street. It’s obvious you don’t care about anyone but yourself. I am not a minimum wage worker so won’t benefit directly from this wage increase either; but I will benefit indirectly from more people spending more money, being able to pay their bills upon which my income depends and fewer people on welfare funded by my taxes.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Your statement contains so many errors it is no wonder you hide behind “Anonymous”.
    – John Fullerton.

    Amazing John. Wow. Cognitive dissonance.

    May I point you to your 460 you submitted Monday?

    *******************************************************************

    Sidelines.

    “Otherwise, this would be all employers, union or not!”

    Let’s see how R does. You surviving on $10.15/ hour, right? Once this is successful, will you be coming out to help pass R 2.0 in 2016? It took a lot of work, but you will find a bunch of support to pass the measure on to all employers.

    Your arguments are really odd. OPJ nailed it when she wrote “It’s obvious you don’t care about anyone but yourself.” That’s the brunt of your argument. R is about all of us. We bite off what we can chew one election at a time.

    You see the real and powerful fear tactics used by Matthew in the Middle and John Fullerton “job killers”, “disaster called Measure R”, etc.

    This is what we can do right now. Sidelines(or Dismayed) if you are sincere, please know that change takes time.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Liberal Jon, it is pointless to debate you as you ignore everything and just repeat your mantra over & over again.

    With all the inflammatory rhetoric & name calling by you & the other pro R people is it any wonder that so many people are donating less than $100.

    Like

    • Yeah, funny how many Chamber members are willing to donate right up to the disclosure limit to keep their labor subsidies and their workers in poverty, John. It is to your and their financial benefit to keep the workers on welfare as you bash them as moochers. F-cking greedy hypocrite.

      Liked by 2 people

    • John,

      Is it pointless to debate me as well. As I pointed out above, you have lied about the choices employers will have. Any employer who feels they would be forced out of business by the law is welcome to open their books (the ones you get to see already) to the people who actually make their business run. If the employees agree that the owner cannot raise their wages to $12/hr, the employer and employees can jointly decide to keep wages below $12.

      As far as fairness, that is the most fair thing imaginable. What you are pretending is that the lwas doesn’t include that option. I understand why you are pretending — it’s entirely possible that minimum wage workers are not going to continue to subsidize bosses that pay themselves a fortune while paying their staffs the least they legally can get away with.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Hey! And it would be pointless to debate me too.

      This is a club I want to be a member of… the John Fullerton Pointless to Debate Society.

      Mr. Fullerton, I wrote a whole article on the subject…

      https://tuluwatexaminer.wordpress.com/2014/07/02/what-exactly-is-measure-r-and-why-does-it-cause-fear-of-city-wide-devastation/

      One correction; I said the number of employers of 25 or more in the City of Eureka could be counted on one hand. I boo-boo’ed. There are quite a few more.

      The rest I think stands scrutiny.

      Liked by 4 people

    • haahaa, this is finally getting to be a fun topic as the ALEC/AFP Persona management robots start up big time……v2.0 promises even better whenever they get the software fixed…someday.

      Let’s just call the developers and gloat that the ‘Pointless to Debate’ glitch is back, and ALEC/AFP wants their money back.

      Liked by 3 people

  13. I would say the authors didn’t care about anyone except the 20% who work for Walmart and their ilk. Since I thought a solution should include everyone, I don’t see how that makes me selfish. 2016. Yeah whatever. That’s two more years of not helping NON-WALMART employees who by the way won’t care to vote next time. The best chance to get this to pass was to include all of us. This might jeopardize 2016 also, so we are screwed. It is you guys who need to think of someone other than yourselves, BTW. Natalie basically lied to our employees. She definitely made it sound that this would apply to us. Sidelines and “Dismayed’

    Like

    • C’mon now, do you really believe that “the authors of Measure R didn’t care about anyone except the 20% who work for Walmart and their ilk?”

      Here’s an alternative explanation you might want to consider — perhaps the authors of Measure R would very much like to see all minimum wage workers get an increase, but anticipated that opponents would be able to create a lot of fear that small employers would be put out of business, and that’s the reason they included an exception for employers with fewer than 25 employees.

      In other words, perhaps they just disagreed with you, tactically, on your belief that “the best chance to get this to pass was to include all of us.” By the way, for all I know, you might be right about that. Unfortunately, your theory won’t be tested (at least not in this election) because there’s no competing ballot measure. Why? Because those who are now complaining about the details of this balllot measure sat on their hands and did nothing, while those who wrote and supported this ballot measures got off their keisters, went out there and collected signatures. So perhaps you should reserve at least some of your frustration for those who did NOTHING, rather than those who are doing what they believed (rightly or wrongly) is the best proposal they could get passed this year.

      Liked by 4 people

  14. “Once you start the personal attacks “Anonymous” you have already lost the debate….it is no wonder you hide behind “Anonymous”.
    (John Fullerton).

    Hiding behind an alleged “personal attack” to dodge the prescient points of your opponents is also childish behavior and as disingenuous as your unverifiable assertions against Measure “R”, a very popular ballot measure.

    Do you honestly believe public policy should be decided by one or two employers claiming “I’m gonna move next door”.

    Your anti-“R” campaign fliers don’t name a single one.

    I’m reminded of Ms. Beverly Wolf with two failed businesses behind her, one in Arcata, one in Eureka, taking the opportunity last year to publicly blame the homeless for “destroying the business environment” for her.

    Anyone truly annoyed by “anonymity”, (that matters), should be outraged that the elected Eureka official that is legally responsible for approving the insertion of the Chamber of Commerce “Argument against Measure R” onto this November’s ballot has not stepped forward to identify themselves.

    Who was it John??

    Liked by 4 people

  15. Thank you everyone for this thread – especially Sidelines (Dismayed) and John as living wages is going to be essential for political discussions going forward for our country and county.

    A couple of thoughts

    *Jane – your comment at 9:46 am Oct 9th was brilliant and so insightful. One quip – “customer service” is way up at our local “health and human services” branch. The euphemisms are just that, but they do add a tiny bit of dignity to the process that most of the EW’s I know further.

    But the indignity of having to fork over so many private details of one’s life is something uniquely suffered only by those who have fallen on hard times. Unfortunately these measures are necessary to minimize fraud, but you make a great point that these cost-of-business externalities paid for by tax-payers is a genuine example of business welfare.

    Maybe we could call the program Cal Job Creator or Cal Entrepreneur.

    John – I’m sorry for any name-calling I’ve been apart of. I don’t like that, but I’d like to ask that as I understand that when Sid Berg or Uri Driscol call local liberals evil or proto brown-shirts, I understand that is part and parcel of the territory. So, please understand that there is genuine anger from the left regarding these arguments that have lead to such incredible measures of national inequity that is so clearly on display in our local community and gird your skin defenses for a little name-calling. It’s what we all do on both sides and hopefully this will be minimized over time as we all begin to understand it is counter-productive in a small community.

    John – my request is this – could you please explain this …

    “Liberal Jon, it is pointless to debate you as you ignore everything”

    Make the bullet points of what I’m ignoring – because I, like you, believe in a vigorous back-and-forth on the issues.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Mitch! Thank you also for your 7:38 am point. That is such an important point and will get to the heart of the Job Creator as victim argument. Nothing as important as being a good reader! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Saw a cute photo on Facebook today. It was of a kangaroo saying, “So raising the minimum wage kills jobs?” “Tell me again how Australia has a $16 an hour mw and is the only country which dodged the global recession.”

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Japan also dodged it, their banks are government owned. North Virginia’s the only state with a state bank. They dodged it too.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. A few months after Measure R passes, I would like to see a list of businesses that stayed in Eureka and raised the wages of their employees so that we the consuming public can show our support by patronizing them.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. “Japan had already been in recession over a decade in 2008. Their “lost decade” turned into 2 lost decades.”

    There “lost decades” were hardly lost on their sick that receive free health care, university, amazing and affordable public transportation, and their elderly receive private rooms, activities, transportation services and a 24/7 on-site physician free for the indigent and $700/month for social security admissions. The equivalent benefits would cost $3,000 a month in Eureka. Even their prisoners enjoy major public investments in rehabilitation that makes their recidivism rates among the lowest in the industrialized world.

    The only thing they seem to have “lost” during the worldwide recession are the hoards of homeless flooding U.S. cities. 60,000 in Los Angeles alone.

    We saw a few in Tokyo.

    Liked by 3 people

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