Our Enemy: The Boardroom
How business makes a sucker of Middle America.
In the 2020 election, business lined up squarely on the side of the candidate and party that promised higher taxes (including corporate taxes), a higher minimum wage (which will drive up wages across the board), re-regulation and a Green New Deal, which will send energy costs soaring.
Joe Biden spent his entire adult life in the warm embrace of government. His political career was devoted to attacking capitalism. Donald Trump is not only an unapologetic spokesman for the free market, but a highly successful businessman.
So, when given a choice, the boardroom went with the taker over the maker, with the aristocracy of pull (as Ayn Rand called it) over the aristocracy of profit. Lenin’s old axiom needs to be updated – “We’ll sell capitalists the candidate we’ll use to hang them.”
Republicans are outraged by Corporate America’s betrayal of Middle America. A February 5th editorial in the Wall Street Journal reports: “In 2020, 57% of Republicans said they were satisfied with big business. This year, the number dropped to 31%” – a phenomenon the Journal attributes to the woke culture hitting the corporate suites.
Companies like Amazon and Nike scrabbled aboard the pc bandwagon. Businesses opened their coffers to causes which would have been shunned just a decade ago.
It was borderline hilarious to see these corporate giants bestowing money earned in the free market to groups like Black Lives Matter, one of whose founders proudly proclaimed that she and her colleagues were “trained Marxists.” Perhaps it would have been different if agitators had burned down the Atlanta headquarters of Coca Cola instead of the stores downtown.
For the managerial class, Black Lives Matter is an opportunity for extreme virtue signaling. Why not? They live in gated communities. Their children attend exclusive private schools. They dine at swank eateries like The French Laundry (where the average meal costs $350). Unlike Middle America, they don’t live with the daily reality of arson, assault, intimidation and murder.
In “The Secret History of the Shadow Campaign That Saved the 2020 Election,” Time Magazine boasted of how an insider alliance of corporations, labor unions, media and the Democratic establishment in effect fixed the presidential election through massive spending, lobbying and disinformation campaigns.
Time gushed over the “well-funded cabal of powerful people…working together behind the scenes to influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information.”
When conservatives speak of well-funded cabals of powerful people working behind the scenes, we’re conspiracy nuts who threaten democracy. When the mainstream media does it, they’re celebrating a diverse coalition that saved democracy.
Cabals aside, corporations have been putting their money where their heart is for some time.
Campaign contributions by employees (most upper-management) of tech titans are about as balanced as news coverage on CNN. Netflix employees gave Democrats 98% of their support in 2020, IMB 90% for the party of Bernie and AOC, Google (88%), Apple and PayPal (84%), Amazon (75%), and Facebook (77%).
The one that comes closest to looking like America, Texas Instruments, only gave 60% of its campaign cash to the neo-Marxists. Just 8 years ago, TI’s employees gave 24% of their donations to the Democrats.
Why is business supporting its mortal enemies?
- The managerial class was educated at the same academic institutions that indoctrinated the media and political elites -- where they were taught that America is a racist nation, that we should strive for equality of outcomes (instead of equal opportunity) and that inclusion is the road to salvation. They read the same journals and watch the same news shows as the rest of the well-fed sheep.
- The marketplace is so messy and unreliable. They prefer working with the bureaucracy to achieve the ends they want.
- They’re ashamed of operating for a profit and seek to justify their existence with the coin of social progress. They long to have the establishment bestow on them the coveted title of progressive business leader.
- They think their customers are boobs, and that their political maneuvering will be overlooked or soon forgotten.
- They view themselves not as Americans but (because they operate internationally) as citizens of the world. From this perspective, what’s good for America must be balanced with what’s good for Honduras, the European Union and the Middle Kingdom. That they grew wealthy and successful in a nation that rewards success and allows for the accumulation of wealth (to a greater degree than any other), is inconsequential to them.
Wait until they see Biden’s impact on business.
Rand used to say, “Brother, you asked for it!” H.L. Mencken observed, “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.” Today, the common people show more common sense than the hucksters of Wall Street and Madison Avenue.
After the price of their stock plummets, I trust corporate leaders will still be able to afford a good lubricant. They’ll need it.