Home Depot Co-Founder Bernie Marcus Calls American Workers ‘Lazy, Fat & Stupid’…Hmmm….

When he co-founded Home Depot more than 50 years ago Bernie Marcus helped create one of the most successful retail businesses ever, one that treated both its customers and its employees right.

Now, it seems Marcus, 93, has some other ideas, at least about the latter. In a recent interview with the Financial Times he said Americans no longer wanted to work because they lazy, fat and stupid.

“I don’t want to work,” he was quoted in the newspaper describing workers. “I’m too lazy. I’m too fat. I’m too stupid.” A report on the interview said he blamed socialism for why “nobody works, nobody gives a damn.” He said if he was founding Depot today he didn’t think the company would be very successful. “We would end up with 15, 16 stores. I don’t know that we could go further.”

Of course the comments from Marcus comes as the number of Americans working is at an all-time high of 154 million and the unemployment rate is near its lowest levels ever, at about 3.7%.

And while it’s true that retailers are having a hard time hiring and having enough workers, many people put the blame on the retailers themselves rather than any socialist policies. Most retail hourly salaries trail many other industries, the benefits are generally considered sub-par and scheduling often makes it difficult for employees to plan for family care and personal matters since hours are many times changed on a frequent basis.

Marcus, who has contributed tens of millions of dollars to conservative political causes and candidates including backing Donald Trump in both the 2016 and 2020 elections, did not address any of those points in his socialist rants. Like Depot co-founders Arthur Blank and Ken Langone, he is a long-time conservative though Blank has supported more liberal social causes more recently.

In the meantime, Home Depot has continued to put out statements that Marcus has not been affiliated with the company for 20 years and his views do not reflect those of the retailer itself.

Still, one can assume that Marcus remains a Depot shareholder and some of his ongoing wealth, estimated by Bloomberg to be about $5.3 billion, comes from those holdings. And even though he has pledged to give away his fortune through The Giving Pledge, right now he continues to put his money where his mouth is. And that mouth is very far to the right.

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