On Saturday, TheBlaze brought you Mike Rowe's inspiring new ad about work. By Monday, major news networks were covering it. But that ad wasn't just a innovative spot about getting factories running. Sure, it was that, but it was also a spot for Walmart, which was announcing an initiative to purchase purchase $250 billion of American-made products over the next 10 years.
Sounds pretty straightforward, right? Well, not according to some people who reached out to Rowe. And in what we've come to expect from the former "Dirty Jobs" host and hard-work heralder, he didn't sit back and take it. He took to his Facebook page Sunday with a lengthy, Q&A-style response.
"Honestly Kevin, who gives a crap about your feelings toward Walmart?" Rowe asked one man who questioned Rowe's decision to partner with Walmart, often a major target of those who like to demonize business.
"[D]ozens of American factories are going to reopen all over the country. Millions of dollars will pour straight into local economies, and hundreds of thousands of new manufacturing positions will need to be filled. That’s a massive undertaking packed with enormous challenges, and I want to help," he added.
"Isn’t this the kind of initiative we can all get behind?" he concluded.
[sharequote align="center"]"Your a corporate suck, Rowe!"[/sharequote]
But he wasn't done.
“I've looked up to you for the longest time," said the same man, Kevin. "What happened to your support of the underdogs? Sad times Mike.”
Rowe didn't hold back [emphasis added]:
Be strong, Kevin. I’m flattered that you’ve looked up to me in the past. Hopefully, I’ll redeem myself in the future. But I’ve never supported the “underdog” simply because they’re not the favorite. Size might matter in some pursuits, (I’ve been assured it does,) but in business, there’s nothing inherently good about being small, and nothing inherently bad about being big. My foundation supports skilled labor, American manufacturing, entrepreneurial risk, a solid work ethic, and personal responsibility. We reward these qualities wherever we find them, whether they’re in David or Goliath.
To be fair, Rowe didn't only respond to those upset with him. One person warned who goes by Deepwarter told Rowe to "brace yourselves for the squealing from the libs who are constantly trashing Walmart.” Rowe was quick to point out it's not just about Left versus Right.
I am braced, Deepwater. But to be fair, I’m friendly with lots of liberals who support this initiative with great enthusiasm. And I know some conservatives who look at this campaign with great skepticism. I don’t blame them. I think anything on television, especially a commercial with a big claim delivered by a professional spokesman should always be questioned. But if the country can’t get behind a program like this, I’m afraid we are all well and truly screwed.
There's plenty more criticism, though:
- "It’s hypocrisy. WalMart’s products are all made in China. WalMart contributes to those empty factories. What’s so 'powerful' about an ad that makes absolutely no sense?"
- “Dear Mike - There's only one little problem with your new commercial for Walmart....and that is that they do NOT provide manufacturing jobs.”
- “I thought you were good person. But I just saw your AD that WAL-MART paid for. Your [sic] a corporate suck, Rowe.”
To see Rowe's full 2,648-word response to those and others, you can go to his Facebook page.
You can watch the ad below and read our original write-up from Saturday: