Issue #358

Left embraces boycott politics

Google's Eric Schmidt: ALEC is
Google’s Eric Schmidt: ALEC is “just literally lying.”

Liberal activists are successfully using pressure campaigns and boycotts to pull corporate America to the left. From gun control to climate change to same-sex marriage, a number of Fortune 500 giants are falling in line with liberal priorities and bolstering agenda items that Democrats have been unable to move through Congress. “It’s quite obvious that corporations have a major influence on these issues given their economic prominence, given the relationship that most everybody has with major brands,” said Brant Olson, the campaign director at the climate group Forecast the Facts.  “What’s I think more significant is that we have companies now that are seeing that their responsibility doesn’t just end with the bottom line. That there actually is a need to, and that their customers are responding to— ompanies that stand for something more than profit.” After months of pressure from Forecast the Facts and other groups, major Silicon Valley companies including Google, Facebook, and Yahoo announced last week that they had left or were planning to leave the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). “Everyone understands climate change is occurring and the people who oppose it are really hurting our children and our grandchildren and making the world a much worse place,” Google Chairman Eric Schmidt said at the time. ALEC is “just literally lying” about the issue, Schmidt said, a charge the group strongly denied. The exodus from ALEC was just the latest victory for activists who have targeted corporate behavior. The Hill, 10-2-14.

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