WASHINGTON, DC, May 16 – The Investopedia website defines capitalism as an economic system “based on individual initiative [that] favors market mechanisms over government intervention, while socialism is based on government planning and limitations on private control of resources.” America is, and always has been, a proud capitalist nation – until now. A new breed of so-called “woke” business men and women has emerged and they threaten our nation’s nearly 250 years of successful democracy.
The benefits of capitalism include personal independence – the ability to think for yourself and to provide for yourself. Economist Mark Kelly exposes socialism as “the Big Lie [that] promises prosperity, equality, and security [but delivers] poverty, misery, and tyranny.” He says it does deliver equality, however, but “only in the sense that everyone [is] equal in his or her misery.”
So, why are elements of corporate America deliberately seeking to undermine their livelihoods and ours by actively promoting socially progressive ideas? Are they nuts? There are those who say “woke” capitalists get that way because they view themselves as being privileged and powerful and so they seek to extend their reach for personal reasons.
Take Karey Burke, for example. She’s the president of the Disney Corporation’s General Entertainment Content unit and she recently decided to get political by challenging Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who’s Parental Rights in Education law prevents classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in grades K-3. Burke is the mother of two LGBTQ children so she decided to use her corporate bully pulpit to object.
The Disney organization makes a lot of money from its Disney World franchise – including The Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL. Burke’s gay-rights controversy and the revelation that she is responsible for the inclusion of LGBTQ lifestyle characters in the cartoons and films the company produces for children has already triggered a boycott.
Jeopardizing a company’s financial interests for personal reasons has never been a good reason to take such a stance as Burke did. But, apparently, it is tempting if you are a “woke” capitalist.
Former McDonald’s former president and CEO Ed Rensi is particularly upset with the “woke” capitalist movement, so much so that he’s taking the reins of a new organization, The Boardroom Initiative. Its purpose is to defend shareholders, employees, and communities from “woke” policies at corporations and to ensure corporate accountability. Rensi says, “When public companies take sides in political debates, it is to the detriment of company shareholders. Free market capitalism—a system responsible for lifting billions out of poverty and improving the worldwide standard of living—is under attack.”
He stresses that corporate executives have only one job: to make sure that their shareholders get a fair return on their investment. In fact, he cited the Disney fiasco in a recent Opinion article, pointing out that Ms. Burke’s clash with Governor DeSantis over the Parental Rights in Education law cost the company’s shareholders tens of billions of dollars in stock market losses.
Meanwhile, Senator Marco Rubio [R-FL] came to this conclusion: “The public support by large corporations for socially progressive ideologies, both in politics and business, has created a crisis of legitimacy for corporate America. By embracing the “woke” revolution that is politicizing nearly every area of Americans’ lives, corporate America has severely damaged its credibility with the rest of the country and broken its relationship with conservatives and the Republican Party. This collapse of trust not only harms the health of our public life; it prevents large corporations from effectively serving the patriotic and necessary roles we need them to in order to advance the common good.”
It turns out that the term “woke” capitalist is much more than just an oxymoron.
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