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Hokay, I’m done with Coke

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 8.22.25 AMNYTimes has an article on the “accidentally” leaked documents of the 501(c)(4) that contributes to the Republican Governor’s Association (RGA).  This advocacy group is called Republican Governors’ Public Policy Committee.  The Democrats have one too but it’s called something like The Center for Innovative Policy.  I guess they solicit all kinds of policy, not just Democratic ones. (that explains a lot)

Anyway, the members of this advocacy group contribute up to $250,000 in order to attend swank soirees and bend the ear of the Republican Governors in attendance.  Access “offers the ability to bring their particular expertise to the political process while helping to support the Republican agenda.”  And I used to think that these were equal opportunity corporate schmoozers.

So, you might be wondering who is in this shadowy group that is supporting the attack on women’s reproductive rights and cutting social safety net programs to the bone.  The usual suspects are here.  But there are also a couple of surprises:

The most elite group, known as the Statesmen, whose members donated $250,000, included Aetna; Coca-Cola; Exxon Mobil; Koch Companies Public Sector, the lobbying arm of the highly political Koch Industries; Microsoft; Pfizer; UnitedHealth Group; and Walmart. The $100,000 Cabinet level included Aflac, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Comcast, Hewlett-Packard, Novartis, Shell Oil, Verizon Communications and Walgreen.

Exxon, the Koch brothers and Pfizer don’t surprise me.  But Coca-Cola and Microsoft?  Really??

You mean every time I drink a diet Coke or buy another annoying Word license, I am contributing the the erosion of women’s rights or depriving some kid of food stamps?

Um, that’s disgusting.

I might not be able to get around Microsoft but I can definitely cut Coke out of my life.  Boycotts might be ineffective but this is a personal choice and I’m not consciously contributing to my own demise.


8 Responses

  1. While I have no hard data to back up my theory, I have a feeling most of the heavy hitter type corporations hedge their bets and you will find their footprint on both sides of the political street…which, would seem to be the smart thing to do if what your main interest is your company’s longevity and survival. Not saying that is a moral/ethical/preferred stance…just saying that’s probably how most business is conducted.

    • Yep, I get that but I don’t want my money to “support the republican agenda”. It’s one thing to lobby in your own best interests. It’s quite another thing to lobby for someone else’s agenda.
      In any case, if they weren’t ok with that agenda, why not just support another party? Don’t you think the Democrats would be more than happy to accommodate their business needs these days? So, there’s more to it than self interest. They’re actually onboard with the underlying policies. Ok, then. I’m not drinking Coke. Ever.

  2. Microsoft is a very heavy donor to both legacy parties. They tend to be relatively non-partisan in their donations, but strongly favor incumbents. Basically, they’ll support anyone who will buy their line of crap about an undersupply of STEM graduates in the US and a corresponding need for virtually unlimited H1B visas for imported slave labor.

    That’s what you’re really supporting when you buy those Word licenses.

    See: https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/toprecips.php?id=D000000115&cycle=2014

  3. I know that interoperability with clients / businesses / colleagues can make this a nonstarter, but, really, have you tried Libreoffice? They say they can read and write Office 2013 formats and all the earlier ones. (The biggest compatibility issues are usually in Powerpoint/Impress.) Last time I had to deal with somebody’s Windows doc it was Office 2003, so I can say it worked seamlessly in that version. No experience with the more recent ones.

    Anyway, my point was going to be that it can’t hurt to try it. Download, install, and see whether it works for you. If yes, end of stupid Word fees.

    Added bonus: open source projects don’t have enough money to go around buying politicians….

    • LibreOffice (and OpenOffice before it) seem to have difficulties with Office docs containing complex multi-level bulleted lists. This has been true for nearly a decade (yes, I use it). As long as that’s not an issue for you, I’m with quixote on this: don’t feed the beast if you can avoid it.

  4. Oh, I’m totally onboard with other office suites. I have the apple pages, numbers and keynote and I’ve downloaded and installed open office stuff. Both work pretty well and output to .doc format. In fact, I prefer pages to word. It’s quicker to load and just nimbler to use.
    I only bought an office for Mac license last year because I needed it for work while my lab’s Mac was being reconfigured for me. It made life easier for a couple of weeks.
    Long story.
    But in general, the working world uses ms office, even on macs. It’s like a qwerty keyboard. Maybe there was a choice 20 years ago. Now, there really isn’t any. You use what everyone else is using even if it’s kludgy and slow.

  5. Welcome to the Pepsi Generation, RD.
    We’ve been waiting for you–bwwaaahhhh-evil laugh.

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