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Are the Bud Light and Target Boycotts Simply About Hatred of the LGBTQ Community, Or Are They About Social Credit Scores?
Yay, it is pride month. Everyone grab your rainbow flags and begin virtual signaling. You have to make sure that everyone knows that you are a good person because you support the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning, intersex, asexual, and more (LGBTQIA+, or simply LGBTQ) community. After all, that community faces genocide and oppression in the United States, despite having a month where the entire country celebrates it. Even Governor Kathy Hochul of New York ordered that certain buildings and bridges (such as One World Trade Center, the Kosciuszko Bridge, Moynihan Train Hall, the LIRR East End Gateway at Penn Station, and the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge) be lit up in flamboyant colors and banners in a state-mandated effort to push the LGBTQ agenda down everyone’s throats. The state will also soon require gender terms and appropriate pronouns to be used under the law.
Where is the separation of church and state? Why do pride worshippers get to display their religious symbols but Christians do not? Large corporations are going out of their way to show that they support diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), and as such, this means that companies have to make it apparent that the LGBTQ community is championed. Gay and transgender individuals are quite oppressed in this country, after all, and we are talking about Nazi Germany-levels, here (the Jews were not privileged enough to have fascistic companies bowing to them, but you should still think of the LGBTQ community as being just as oppressed as them).
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Why does anyone really need to show their preferred sexual preferences? You can do whatever you want behind closed doors, but does everyone else need to know (this should apply to heterosexuality too)? If you want to be gay or transgender, fine, but do not shove it down our throats. Why is there such a massive push by corporations to virtual signal on behalf of the LGBTQ community?
Well, it turns out that in order to get funding, investors, and other opportunities, it becomes almost mandatory for these corporations to show off their “pride.” There is a fascistic movement in this country to make sure that homosexuality and transgenderism is normalized to the point where you will be cancelled if you do not go along with the agenda (yes, cancel culture is alive and well, despite what the Left, which is in support of the cancelling, argues).
First, to understand what is going on, we must take a look at some of the largest asset management companies, which include BlackRock, The Vanguard Group, and State Street Corporation. In particular, though, BlackRock has partnerships with the Federal Reserve and has connections to the powerful banks manipulating the economy, through the purchasing of bonds (and commercial mortgage-backed securities) and the selling of exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Not only does BlackRock have powerful interests in the federal government, but along with Vanguard and State Street, it manages the equivalent of three-quarters of the nation’s economy (roughly $15 trillion) and 88% of all of the S&P Fortune 500 companies. BlackRock is one of the most powerful entities on the planet, and it is a major shareholder in almost every product and service that we consume on a daily basis, controlling about $8 trillion in assets. Even if a small- or medium-sized company is not directly owned by one of these asset managers, it will certainly rely on some of their products and services to be able to conduct business. Examples of companies owned by BlackRock include: Google, Amazon, Disney, Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, General Electric, Apple, Microsoft, ExxonMobile, Chevron-Texaco, American Airlines, Delta Airlines, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Citigroup, Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, Lockheed Martin, Haliburton, Boeing, Raytheon, Northrup Grumman, CNN, Fox News, ABC, NBC, and ESPN (to fact check this, simply go to Google or any other search engine and look for the shareholders).
Many of these corporations do business with the federal government (think the defense contractors or the pharmaceutical industry), and the revolving door concept, where officials and employees go back and forth between government and corporate jobs, means that fascistic and corporatist partnerships are alive and well in the United States. Plus, politicians are often bought and paid for by lobbying companies. State-endorsed monopolies of old (like the Dutch East India Company or the British East India Company) used to control markets in the economy by forming partnerships with governments, but now, similar partnerships are less obvious. Today, we have the illusion of choice, but in reality, most wealth is in the hands of the very few who are able to sway public policy to their whim.
If BlackRock, Vanguard, and State Street own so many corporations and have partnerships with the federal government, why would they not want to exercise their influence over every aspect of our lives? One way in which these investment firms get corporations to fall in line with certain agendas is through the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) scoring system, which is fully endorsed by BlackRock CEO Larry Fink. ESG started out as a 2004-2005 United Nations (UN) initiative (under the UN Global Compact Initiative) to get financial interests on board with implementing certain sustainability goals. The ESG process is done by denying investment opportunities to companies that do not comply and granting companies reputational benefits (perhaps harming the reputations of companies not complying).
Asset managers grade companies on their reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, climate change policies, and energy usage. Not only are corporations under pressure from governments to comply with environmental regulations, but they also have to deal with BlackRock and others attempting to get them to adhere to sustainability agendas. Although reducing pollution and waste is generally good, this is being used as a tool to reduce productivity of companies and force these changes on the population, whether or not they are effective (in a non-democratic manner). The arbitrary guidelines become more important than the actual goal of improving the environment. Just like with the Covid-19 pandemic, manipulated data, dogmatic science, authoritarian mandates, and ineffectual policies are being used in the climate change debate, so having an environmental report card just harms buyers and sellers in the market without consideration of other factors.
In addition to ensuring favorable working conditions, ESG emphasizes the need to push the LGBTQ agenda (social score) and have a board of directors that is diverse, regardless of merit and moral character (governance score). Diversity can be good, but making it the only considering factor for decisions is shortsighted, immoral, and ineffective at bringing about results that yield the best productivity. Why do we let BlackRock, Vanguard, State Street, and a handful of other investors determine the direction of the market and the social and environmental policies of society?
Speaking about making diversity more important than merit, ESG is not the only type of social credit system pushed onto these companies. Another rating structure is simply called diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), and again, like with anything else, it is sold as something beneficial and moral. Yet, as discussed, basing things solely on diversity and inclusion without considering other factors can actually be harmful to companies and society in general. If you overlook people because they are simply from a background or skin color that is in the majority, you are discriminating against them for characteristics that they cannot avoid and potentially missing out on talent. Bragging rights about how much one supports the LGBTQ community (see Disney, for example, and perhaps now even Chick-fil-A) or hires women over men, or minorities over white people, may help with a company’s reputation, but is this discrimination really the right approach? Investors basing their financial decisions on DEI think so.
The social credit score system that is really taking off at the moment is the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), which is created by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and funded by George Soros and his Open Society Foundation (no, I am not anti-Semitic because I criticize what a billionaire, who happens to be Jewish, is funding; and I should not even need this disclaimer, but progressives literally suggest this). As of 2022, 1,271 companies were participants in CEI, of which, 379 were Fortune 500 companies. Edward Jones and Disney, for example, boast that they have received a 100% CEI score for a few years and are among the best places for members of the LGBTQ community to work; and other large corporations receiving the top mark include: Walmart, Amazon, Exxon Mobile, Apple, CVS, Berkshire Hathaway, UnitedHealth, AT&T, Google, Ford, Costco, Chevron, JPMorgan Chase, General Motors, Walgreen, and Verizon. The scoring system consists of five categories: Workforce Protections (ranked out of 5 points), Inclusive Benefits (ranked out of 50 points), Supporting an Inclusive Culture (ranked out of 25 points), and Corporate Social Responsibility (ranked out of 20 points); and if a company donates to Christian groups or any organization that speaks out against the LGBTQ community, there is a 25-point reduction (companies are urged to support the LGBTQ community and turn against the Christian community, but yet, the former is considered the one that is oppressed).
What is interesting about CEI is that the HRC actually embeds its representatives into large corporations to guide them on how to increase their scores and threaten them with forfeiture of points if they do not comply, and just like with ESG scores, companies can face loss of financial opportunities for ignoring CEI scores. Is it any surprise, then, that Anheuser-Busch (AB InBev) would feature a transgender person, Dylan Mulvaney, for its Bud Light advertisements, or that Target would attempt to condition kids by creating transgender attire and putting it on full display? In some ways, you might feel sorry for these companies, as they have little choice but to pursue these criteria and push the agendas of HRC and BlackRock thugs, but on the other hand, boycotting the companies sends a signal to investment firms that the people will no longer comply with their dominance in the economy. The boycotts contrast with cancel culture because they are about a mass of the people rebelling against a corrupt and tyrannical system, as opposed to those tyrannical institutions cancelling individuals who do not comply with the demands of organized agendas and the corporate status quo.
Unfortunately, advocating for some of these companies to fall or lose sales is the only way we the people can fight back against the current financial system of slavery and serfdom. This is a war against financial institutions and government-corporate partnerships (fascism that is ironically supported by progressives and so-called “anti-fascists”). It is estimated that Bud Light sales are still down 23.9% (they were down 29.5% at the peak), and even Budweiser, Michelob Ultra, Busch Light, and Natural Light (Anheuser-Busch’s other brands) saw decreases in sales (though, not as dramatic). Target lost $10 billion in ten days, or roughly 14% of their value.
Non-thinking liberals simply believe that the boycotts are just about harming the LGBTQ community or being bigoted (in the culture war), but as discussed, this runs much deeper than that. It is funny that when liberals boycott or Twitter censors information at the direction of the federal government, they consider it capitalism and the free market, but when conservatives boycott or remove books from being viewed by children (not adults), it is classified as terrorism and fascism. It is understandable why they would take a superficial look at this issue, as people have a right to be gay or transgender, and historically, these communities have been marginalized. Nobody should be treated like that, but at the same time, the agenda should not be forced down our throats in a systemic fashion.
As guests on The Young Turks have pointed out, this is the best and freest time to be a member of the LGBTQ community. As discussed, New York State is bending over backwards for these people, and the federal government, as well as many states, has specialized protections for them. With ESG, DEI, and CEI, how can one really conclude that the LGBTQ community faces genocide, fascism, and bigotry at the institutional level?
Yet, the HRC makes this an issue on the regular, by issuing travel warnings to Florida (along with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or NAACP) and a nationwide emergency of human rights violations against the LGBTQ community. Now, to be fair, I do not condone some of the laws that state legislatures have made to combat the pro-LGBTQ fascism that is taking place (such as the drag show ban in Tennessee, which has been struck down, anyway); but to argue that there is a transgender genocide taking place is ridiculous. Is it really oppression when transgender athletes are not permitted to compete in sports of their opposite biological sex or when kids are not permitted to have gender-affirming bodily transformations (why do we allow restrictions on minors in other areas but not on this issue?)? Are books really being burned, or is it the state determining what is age appropriate for school curriculums and libraries (if schools were decentralized, this would not even be an issue)?
During the Covid-19 pandemic, “conspiracy theorists” and “misinformation spreaders” were considered for concentration camps (the proposals did not actually take effect), punished and censored for speaking their minds, shamed in nationalistic propaganda campaigns and systemically scapegoated for society’s problems, forced to “choose” between employment or getting a pharmaceutical injection (brought to you by BlackRock-controlled Pfizer), forced to stay home and shutter their businesses, and compelled to wear a mask to show compliance with the collective. These were called minor inconveniences, and nothing that the LGBTQ community faces is even close to this in severity. The community is being promoted at every turn, and the nationalistic propaganda is on its side. Yes, there are some hate-filled people who threaten members of the community, but this is already illegal and not condoned by anyone of good moral character. These bigots are not endorsed by the state to commit hate crimes. Plus, bomb threats have also been made by the pride movement, so the “terrorism” goes both ways.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (who uses more executive orders and authoritarianism than I would like) has also fought back against ESG and CEI by signing a bill into law that prevents state officials from publicly investing in ESG stocks and bonds, and he has pulled out $2 billion in assets from BlackRock because of its ESG endorsements. The time may have come where people are starting to wake up to the reality of the serfdom under which they live, and if the boycotts against Bud Light, Target, and many other corporations continue, perhaps there is a chance we can fight back against nationalistic and global tyranny. Next, maybe we can go after the corporate “nine-to-five” lifestyle and the federal income tax structure that has us working for the government for up to half of the fruits of our labor. First, let us continue grassroots movements to pressure corporations to abandon the status quo. Freedom can be won in increments.
Thank you for reading, and please check out my book, The Global Bully, and website.
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