What A Great Idea!

The Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz, has written a letter to the heads of major corporations on the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ asking them to join him in boycotting all political donations to all politicians in Washington, until they “get the country’s economic circulatory system flowing again.” Spend political money creating jobs, not buying politicians, he says.

What I like about this idea is that the recipients of Congressional largess (not us, corporations) are starting this boycott. Not a grass roots campaign of people that will, as usual, have no effect. This is big money. Corporate money. Money they won’t get if this boycott takes hold. Enough, potentially, to make those same politicians stand up and take notice.

I think there is enough of a groundswell of frustration in this country with the politicians we elect doing nothing but helping themselves and their rich buddies, that if a watchdog organization like Democracy 21 publicizes those companies that break the boycott (like, perhaps, the Koch Brothers?) by continually giving to certain politicians, or by publishing the names of politicians that take corporate contributions in violation of the boycott, we voters can approve or disapprove by withholding votes for those politicians that continue to take corporate money.

And, it could even lead to a wave of politicians who renounce corporate money. Think about it. If a politician was lobbing negative ads paid for with corporate PAC money, and his opponent had renounced all corporate contributions, who would you vote for?

Yes, I like this idea. It has potential.

I knew I was drinking the right coffee.

13 thoughts on “What A Great Idea!

  1. I’ll start to get excited when companies like Exxon, Pfizer, Blue Cross, General Motors, Bank of America, Boeing, and the like get onboard, and what exactly is meant by flowing? It’s already flowing, just to the wrong people, the well-to-do.

    • Well, yes… I would have to guess that the more entrenched of the corporate giants (which I would postulate would be among the least progressive; if we can even reasonably talk about “progressive” corporations) will also be among the least likely to take part.

      Would this leave them alone to buy the politicians? I don’t know. Just askin’.

      • Well exactly. The worst of the lot will in effect gain more buying power if the “progressive” corporations leave the game.

        Wtf would big oil, big pharma and the like care about some negative PR from funding candidates? What, people are going to then not buy gas or their medications? Ha! With the market all tits up, are you going to not invest in guaranteed money makers on principle, especially when you’re older and you’ve seen large chunks of your retirement fund disappear in the last several years? Starbucks doesn’t have anyone by the balls, but other companies do and they know it and they’ll do whatever they want.

  2. Starbucks is a pretty big corporation, but it’s a pygmy compared to the giants PhillyChief listed. My guess is that, however well-intentioned Schultz may be, the outcome of this move will be good PR for Starbucks and little else.

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