The Wall Street Journal titles this, “Woke Capital’s Political Warning”. To which Woke Capital would reply, “So what?”
This whole push is about turning an open society into a closed oligarchy. The big multinationals have spent the last generation making it clear that they don’t give a damn about the country outside of a few major urban and suburban areas. Republican approval dropping to 31% would be significant in some sort of open society in which the public’s view of things actually counted. All of this is about bringing about a nation in which the public counts as much as it did to Louis XIV.
But here’s the warning.
So why did satisfaction with the “size and influence of major corporations” fall 15 points in this year’s annual Gallup poll to a mere 26%?
The collapse came not among Democrats, whose skeptical views were virtually unchanged, but among Republicans. In 2020, 57% of Republicans said they were satisfied with big business. This year the number plummeted to 31%. The likely reason, as NBC’s Alex Seitz-Wald points out, is “the culture war reaching the C-suite.”
Put differently, many Fortune 500 firms took the Black Lives Matter protests as an opportunity to pivot hard to the left, ostentatiously endorsing protests even as they sometimes turned violent. Companies from Amazon to Nike donated large sums to progressive activist groups. Managers started to assign polarizing left-wing political texts to employees and adopted new racial hiring preferences. Brands like Coca-Cola and Eddie Bauer boycotted Facebook to try to pressure it to clamp down on political speech.
All of this did not pass without notice by Americans. Companies weren’t merely donating to their favored political candidates—they’ve done that for decades. They were bypassing the political process and intervening directly to transform highly contested parts of American life.
Despite all that wokeness, Democrat approval of corps sits at 24%. Republican approval has dropped down to 31%.
Corps lost a lot of ground with Republicans, without actually gaining support from Democrats. All the virtue signaling and the attempts to rig the election didn’t lead to any kind of groundswell of support from lefties. Neither did all the BLM ads. But that assumes the corps were being cynical, rather than expressing their values and beliefs. Which, I think, is exactly what they were doing. And that’s bad news for everyone because it makes it much less likely that they’ll turn back.