Friday, March 28, 2008


Wal-Mart's ugly face

by Larry Geller

Deborah Shank Needs Your Help  This isn't "disappeared news," it's spreading like wildfire all over the web, thanks to the efforts of Keith Olbermann on MSNBC and bloggers who are carrying stories and videos. It was the most emailed story on

In a nutshell, Debbie Shank, a 52-year-old mother of three, suffered severe brain damage in a traffic accident. She won a $417,000 settlement, which the family set aside in a trust for her future medical expenses. Wal-Mart sued the family for $470,000 to reimburse the company for every cent it had paid for Debbie's medical bills because of a clause in her medical insurance contract, and they won.

Wal-Mart, with billions in profits, did not need to sue the Shank family, but they did. The family doesn't know how they can ever pay Wal-Mart and provide for Debbie's needs. To top it off, Debbie's son was killed in Iraq. Although she attended his funeral, she asks about him every day, weeps when she hears the news.

There must be a special place in hell for company executives who would do this.

Will Wal-Mart Do the Right Thing for Brain-Damaged Ex-Employee Debbie Shank's Family?

For the complete, ugly story, check out this article on Huffington Post by David Nassar, Will Wal-Mart Do the Right Thing for Brain-Damaged Ex-Employee Debbie Shank's Family?

More is at Wal-Mart Watch. If you click the top image in this article it will take you to a Wal-Mart Watch article which has information on a petition, a Shank family donation page, and other articles (including Big Box, Small Heart, a great title).

Keith Olbermann takes on Wal-Mart 

Keith Olbermann says he going to feature Wal-Mart's CEO on his World's Worst segment every night until Wal-Mart caves.

It's a new kind of activism. In addition to supporting Deborah Shank, we should also express our thanks to Olbermann for his unique approach to pounding some humanity through the thick, greedy skulls of Wal-Mart's management. Here are some emails that may work (if they haven't been turned off by the time you try them):

And the first two Worst segments:


If you have a blog, please consider posting something to keep the pressure on Wal-Mart.

And of course, if you still shop there, why not consider whether you still want to support a company that would do this.

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