Michael: Corporate Welfare from the ground up In ArizonaArizona taxpayers subsidize Wal-Mart employees healthcare. Nearly 10 percent of Wal-Mart's workforce qualify for state aid.
Here in America Inc. we are used to seeing wealthy and powerful corporations raking in welfare benefits in the form of subsidies, guaranteed loans, bailouts, tax breaks, and various kinds of pork and sweetheart deals proferred by greed-head politicians (a distinction without a difference, I'm afraid). But the growth of corporate welfare from the grassroots is a fairly unexamined phenomenon. Nearly half of those recieving state assistance are employed, mostly by food and service companies.
How much does it cost taxpayers every year to subsidize the chronic underpayment of American workers? Wouldn't it be more efficient and fair to require employers to pay a living wage and supply healthcare benefits and pass those costs on to their customers, rather than to all taxpayers? Wouldn't it be more ethical to require employers to provide wages that people can live off, rather than making working people take poverty benefits just to get by?