After the uproar from last week’s piece died down, I thought maybe I’d go a little less controversial.
But I have to share what’s on my mind.
Most of you know that a little over a year ago, I started riding my bicycle as part of my overall health regimen. Since you didn’t ask, I’ll proudly tell you anyway, since last February, I’ve lost 117 pounds. The cycling played a big role in that. I set a goal for myself this year of riding 3000 miles, basically enough to have crossed the entire country on my bicycle, which means 250 miles per month. So far I’m ahead of the pace, and that’s having taken a week off in February to recover from a nice set of injuries I sustained when I let my bike slip out from underneath me while pedaling full-bore around a corner.
It’s a lot of time to spend on the bike, and I’ve found that listening to music doesn’t work for me, because I like to actively participate in that. I want to play my guitar or conduct the orchestra, all of which is a bad idea when you’re riding the bike at a solid pace (see above regarding a crash), so I’ve taken to listening to audio books while on my ride. This has turned out to be perfect for me, because I love to read and keep finding less and less time to do it. Now, I have a scheduled time every day where I can spend at least a half hour listening to a book.
The books I’ve chosen have been varied. I’ve wanted to tackle the James Bond books for years and have finally gotten to them. I’ve listened to the first three, and if anybody thinks we haven’t made progress as a society on both the women’s and racial fronts, they might want to take a peek inside these books. I’ve also gotten in some great history (Devil in the White City), thought-provoking classics (1984), and riveting fiction (The Alienist).
But the politics never stay away for too long, and I’ve found myself listening to a number of those as well. The one I’m listening to now is downright frightening. It’s called the Dictatorship of Woke Capitalism by Stephen R. Soukop, and it answers a lot of questions I’ve been asking myself for the last few years, mainly “Why is it that corporations, who are supposedly the bane of the left in this country, have taken a dramatic turn leftward in the last seven or eight years?” I’m not talking about a little move to the left, I’m talking about major corporations embracing—nay, giving a full-on tongue kiss to—the hard left.
Liberals used to warn us about corporations and how they were evil and how they would destroy us all in the name of greed and profit. Little did we know that it was they who would harness the evil power of corporations and use them against us and the entire American set of values, exploiting the desire to benefit shareholders all the while. The concept discussed at length in the book--and on Glenn Beck this morning--is the concept of ESG investing. ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance; it’s a method of investing based on how “woke” the companies are. Companies are evaluated and given a score based on how hard left their corporate values are. The farther left, the higher the score.
Over the years this method of investing has become prominent, with hundreds of billions of dollars invested using this methodology. Large corporations know that if they want any access to that capital at all--the capital reserved for the “woke” corporations—they’d better toe the line.
One thing we know from all the years the culture wars have been fought is that liberals organize and boycott well. They starve and choke opinions out of people, companies and corporations. Boycotting is not really a right-wing thing. Now, on Facebook someone will comment with a list of “right-wing boycotts,” most of which aren’t and nearly all of which failed, which underscores my point. In other words, there’s not much of a threat of financial backlash for upsetting conservatives, but the left is an entirely different story.
Personally, I’m not a fan of boycotts. I’m more of a “buycott” guy myself. If a company produces things I don’t like or in a way I don’t like, I don’t support that thing. If they produce something I CAN support, I support exactly that. But the day may come where conservatives have to face the possibility that, in order to preserve their values and principles, they may have to take a break from today’s culture.
The simple fact is that most of the major corporations and a good many of the biggest banks are shacking up with “woke capitalism,” in much the same way a rope-maker may hire himself out to make the rope he knows will be used to hang him. And they wield this power to silence and discriminate against conservatives. Put your honest glasses on and tell me the difference in offensiveness between the tweets of Gina Carano and those of her Mandalorian castmate Pedro Pascal. One of these actors got a pat on the back, while the other had one of the largest corporations in the world attempt to destroy her. In fact, they recently did nothing as one of their paid employees (Cast Members), former Senator Heidi Heitkamp, went on Bill Maher’s HBO show and called her a “Nazi” who “hangs out with white supremacists.”
Facebook recently removed an interview with Donald Trump from both their Instagram and Facebook platforms and warned people against reposting it, because they’ve entirely banned a former President of the United States from having a platform. Why? Because as he was telling a group of people that they should go to the Capitol “peacefully”, another group of people were causing trouble at the Capitol. Doesn’t really matter that the attack on the Capitol couldn’t have been committed by the people Trump was speaking to because, as even the New York Times admits, the timeline doesn’t match up. It just matters that Facebook saw an opportunity to silence a so-called bigot and a Republican, though to these people, the two and one and the same. The beautiful thing is that Facebook’s ESG score went UP after they silenced the speech of a former President of the United States.
This is the heart and soul of the conundrum we conservatives face. It is impractical at best to withdraw from all of the woke capital around us. How does one function without Apple, Disney, Nike, AT&T, Coca-Cola, Amazon, Paypal, Target, Gillette, Burger King, Cover Girl, Facebook, Twitter, Intel, Ben & Jerry’s, McDonald’s, Starbucks, Salesforce, Microsoft, Nabisco, Netflix, Bank of America, Mastercard, Macy’s Pinterest, Spotify, Google, Delta, Chipotle, Calvin Klein, Tesla, Under Armour, and Sony? I suppose we could start a GoFundMe to help out, but guess what? They’re part of the problem, too!
My suggestion: get more involved in what you’re investing in and how it’s invested. You probably have a 401(k) or IRA or other investment retirement account. Research the funds you’re in, reallocate your dollars. Divest yourself of anything that assigns an ESG or “wokeness” score to companies. Use your money to save capitalism and American society just as the left are trying to use theirs to destroy it.