Robert Brownson long believed that his proposed development here, with its 200,000-square-foot Wal-Mart Supercenter, was being held hostage by nearby homeowners.He had seen them protesting at city hall, and they had filed a lawsuit to stop the project.
What he didn't know was that the locals were getting a lot of help. A grocery chain with nine stores in the area had hired Saint Consulting Group to secretly run the antidevelopment campaign. Saint is a specialist at fighting proposed Wal-Marts, and it uses tactics it describes as "black arts."...
Supermarkets that have funded campaigns to stop Wal-Mart are concerned about having to match the retailing giant's low prices lest they lose market share. Although they have managed to stop some projects, they haven't put much of a dent in Wal-Mart's growth in the U.S., where it has more than 2,700 supercenters"”large stores that sell groceries and general merchandise. Last year, 51% of Wal-Mart's $258 billion in U.S. revenue came from grocery sales.
Read the whole article. There hardly appears to be any major grocery chain or related union that has not contributed significant dollars to preventing their competitor from doing what they have already done - built a store in town. Knock me over with a feather that Chicago is a major example, training ground for our President and promoter-in-chief of our emerging corporate state.
The only sustainable monopolies are those enforced by the government, which through licensing, regulation, zoning, or all of the above, squash upstart competitors at the expense of consumers in favor of politically connected incumbents.