Up Against the Wal-Mart

After a long and nasty fight, Vermont lets in the largest U.S. retailer but cuts it down to size

You've got to hand it to the resolutely rustic citizens of Vermont: they know how to bend outsiders to their will. Outraged by the thought of Wal-Mart megastores sprouting among their sugar maples and dainty shops (Ye Olde Wal- Marte?), antigrowth protesters have repeatedly fought off America's No. 1 retailer and made their state the only one in the country to remain Wal-Mart free.

That stubbornness has forced the huge company, based in Bentonville, Arkansas, to think small. In a deal that reflected the determination of Wal- Mart to conquer all 50 states, the firm last week agreed to build a...

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