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walmart1.pngSelling Wal-Mart by Jeffrey Goldberg, in the current New Yorker, gives a rare, unflattering, and sometimes laugh-out-loud sarcastic look at how the Edelman PR machine earns “roughly 10 million annually” for helping to improve Wal-mart’s “reputation on such issues as low wages, miserly benefits, sex discrimination, and union busting. ”
Key quotes: “Ethical ambidexterity is no barrier to success in the public-relations field, particularly in Washington.”
“Edelman specializes in helping industries with image problems; another important client is the American Petroleum Institute, a Washington lobbying group that seeks to convince Americans that oil companies care about the environment and that their profits are reasonable.”
On former Democratic campaign strategist Leslie Dach, whom Richard Edelman said is making a very real contribution to Wal-Mart: “Wal-Mart, in turn, is making a great contribution to Dach: “he was given three million dollars in stock and a hundred and sixty-eight thousand stock options, in addition to an undisclosed base salary. ”
On Dach’s interview technique: “Dach knows how to divert an unfriendly question with a flood of words, few of which address the subject at hand. ”