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Latest tweet from Elon

Elon Musk ‏@elonmusk
Supercharger announcement pushed to next week. Something else this week.

Let the speculation begin!

@rtmurph3
Do you and your partner work at one of the stores or at the corporate offices? From what I understand, only those working at corporate get health insurance and the store employees earn just enough to still qualify for Medicaid (certainly not the same healthcare). If the facts prove otherwise, please enlighten us.

I park only in end parking spaces or near the periphery of any parking lot to avoid door dings. It doesn't matter if it is Walmart or Nieman Marcus. I would be glad to see charging stations at Walmart because they are everywhere, have clean restrooms, usually a Subway sandwich shop (or similar), groceries, pharmacy, etc. I shop there frequently for the inexpensive items they sell. I know several people who work there for extra family income (not as the primary provider of a family) and they appreciate the work (esp in this economy). None of them are on food stamps and everyone I know has health insurance through their spouses or parents (including my 16 yo son who makes more than min wage stocking shelves. Gotta love capitalism - it's what has made this country great.

Obviously there are some who do well at Walmart and others do OK because they get health insurance elsewhere, but when 80% of employees are on government subsidies that is a problem. Food stamps are Medicaid are supposed to be a safety net, not part of a corporate strategy to externalize costs. Call it what you want, innovation, capitalism whatever, it is not good. And then there are the factory “workers” overseas, which is another sad part of the Walmart story.

You can look at it that way I suppose. But I do not think working for Walmart has put them on food stamps.

Another perspective is that Walmart gives more jobs to those who most need one.

In a free market, no one would stay at Walmart if their alternates were superior.

They needed that job and Walmart delivered.

I said in another (edited) post a week or more ago:

I'd like to throw my two cents into this discussion regarding Walmart stores and supercharger locations. It seems to me Tesla, Solar City, and Walmart would all benefit by leveraging and expanding their existing relationship outside of California. Walmart will directly benefit from solar panel installations, as will Solar City (both initially and later with spent Tesla batteries). Tesla purchases & supplies those batteries, probably lowering their unit cost with the increased volume. Since Solar City (and Elon Musk) has an already strong relationship with Walmart, the time from site selection to finished product would be minimized, e.g., no bureaucratic red tape, corporate posturing, etc. This would be key to quick and widespread SC distribution.

As noted, Walmarts are often located within short driving distances of major arteries, like I-75 and I-95 in FL. Many are open 24/7, all have public bathrooms and some either a McDonalds or Subway inside. They are always well-lit with good security day and night, and almost always will have plenty of available space for multiple SC installation. Unlike shopping malls, most people don't spend hours shopping at Wal-Marts, thus helping to minimize SC wait times. Shopping malls tend to take much longer. Although I realize some owners routinely avoid Wal-Marts, who among us couldn't find something to do in there (or at one of the nearby stores or restaurants for 30 minutes on a long-distance trip? I too believe superchargers should usually be placed between major cities as range extenders and should not be relied upon for day-to-day charging.

MIke Duke, CEO of Walmart, says his goal for Walmart is to use 100% alternative energy sources, resulting in $1 Billion in energy savings. I'd like to see Solar City further that goal and see TM customers enjoy a spinoff benefit.

nothing against walmart, its just not where I want to spend 40 minutes when traveling, a nice chain restaurant would be better, IMHO.

When I am traveling I do not want to be chained to any chain - I need variation. No chain restaurant please !

All Walmart cares about is cheap product from overseas.

Relax folks, it's not going to be all or nothing. If you can't stand smiling at a greeter and saving money, keep driving to the next charger at the X Factory Outlet or Y highway rest area. The synergies between the two companies are obvious. The simple fact remains that if every company committed funds proportionally to as many initiatives as Walmart does, the world would be considerably better off. A small sampling:

http://www.marketing-interactive.com/news/39650

@Amped - not only Walmart... everybody is doing it only because of the US tax policy.
Here is how it is done: produce a high value part in the US and send it at cost to foreign assembly. Profit you realize in the foreign country - that country give you special tax treatment and the US doesn't tax you. When foreign country says you tax deal is expired you pack your factory and move it to another country ( I moved the same factory from the US into country A, then B and then C every time the special foreign tax treatment expired ).
The strange thing about the US tax code is that as an individual if you make $100 in interest oversees then it is fully US taxed ( only country in the world ) and you can only deduct the foreign taxes paid.
Cheap labor may play a role in clothing etc, but not in high tech factories. None of the factories overseas I was involved in made ever a product at lower cost then in the US... worst case was China production cost almost doubled, however the tax advantage is huge compared to production cost.


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