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  • The Wall Street Journal reports that organized labor leaders from a wide variety of countries – including Argentina, Brazil, Germany and the UK – plan to meet next week to map out an action plan to unionize Wal-Mart employees in their home nations.

    The conference is sponsored by Union Network International (UNI), which represents more than 15 million workers in 100 countries.

    There’s nothing covert about UNI’s methods, though. The organization’s leadership reportedly has written to Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott explaining the conference’s aims and asking for a meeting at which they could discuss working conditions at the retailer’s stores and how they might work together “to support the sustainable competitiveness of commerce.”

  • The AFL-CIO has filed an official request with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), asking it to reject Wal-Mart’s request to open an industrial loan corporation in Salt Lake City, Utah.

    "A Wal-Mart-owned bank will create increased risk to the federal deposit insurance system," Sweeney said in a letter.

    The Independent Community Bankers of America also has asked for a rejection of the Wal-Mart application, saying that it “presents very serious public policy issues regarding the appropriate structure of our financial and economic system.”

KC's View:
Labor can do a lot of things, but we think that suggesting that Wal-Mart will somehow hurt the national system of guaranteeing deposits is a specious argument.

When you think about it, Wal-Mart wouldn’t even need government help to guarantee the money. Just its own petty cash would be plenty (though maybe there isn’t as much of that in Bentonville in the post-Coughlin era).