Stand Still. Get Crushed. Wal-Mart.

wal_mart_logo_moneyIntrepid Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News columnist Michael Smerconish (who famously proclaimed here that “I don’t do reporting” – uh, kind of odd to admit that in a newspaper, n’est-ce pas?) blamed the tragic death of Long Island, NY Wal-Mart employee Jdimytai Damour on “semicrazed shoppers (who) left a man’s body lying next to a metal door frame that was ‘crumpled like an accordion’,” here.

Yep, that’s partly the reason, but then Smerky, in his inimitable fashion, goes on to decry other individuals in our corporate media such as Peter Goodman of the New York Times, who blamed Damour’s death on “the bleak economy.”

I grudgingly admit that Smerky has a point; as awful as our times currently are, at least we still have SOME credit, and there was none to be had during the Great Depression, a comparison invoked by Goodman (or so an expert on this subject tells me, and that would be my mom, because she lived through it). I think comparing these times to those awful years is a little off base (probably not by much, though).

However, did anyone else know that two other Wal-Mart customers in Maryland are filing personal injury lawsuits because they claim back and neck injuries from a similar accident as the one that claimed the life of Damour (here)?

But then again, what else can you expect from a company that demoted a female assistant manager because she had to take time off from work for an emergency hysterectomy (here – h/t Wake Up Wal-Mart)? Or successfully sued a brain damaged former employee for insurance money that she received before an award in a car accident case here (and did I mention that she also lost her son in Iraq?).

Yes, the people who did nothing while Damour was trampled to death deserve a measure of blame. But is it too much to ask of the smiley-faced vendor of cheap knockoff junk to perform a little crowd control on the busiest shopping day of the year?

Update 12/7/08: Curiouser and curiouser…

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