Memo to Starbucks: Dig In, Smell the Coffee, Fight Back

starbucks-coffee-cup-227x300Starbucks, that epitome of a socially-conscious corporation, is now the target of a campaign among self-styled socially-conscious activists. One can understand why radical activists would go after discount retail behemoth Wal-Mart. But who would have thought they’d have classy Starbucks in their sights? Last month, Brave New Films, an independent documentary production company based in Culver City, California, launched its “Stop Starbucks” campaign. The website features a four-minute video on YouTube alleging mistreatment by the company of its employees, plus a petition demanding Chairman and CEO Howard Schultz “quit following Wal-Mart’s anti-union example.” Within a week, nearly 12,000 viewers signed it. The campaign also features a Twitter attack, replete with messages like “I want my union with my latte” and “Schultz makes millions, workers make beans.”

All this somehow makes sense. The head of Brave New Films is Robert Greenwald, producer of the 2005 anti-corporate agitprop feature, “Wal-Mart: The High Read More ➡

ABC Jettisons Journalistic Ethics to Flack for Obama Health Care

ABC News logoFrom Drudge today:

On the night of June 24, the media and government become one, when ABC turns its programming over to President Obama and White House officials to push government run health care — a move that has ignited an ethical firestorm!

Highlights on the agenda: ABCNEWS anchor Charlie Gibson will deliver WORLD NEWS from the Blue Room of the White House.

The network plans a primetime special — ‘Prescription for America’ — originating from the East Room, excluding opposing voices on the debate.

ABC is going one step further than NBC did in 1993 when it broadcast a health care special, paid for by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, favorable to Hillary’s health care plan. This time, ABC is cutting out the special interest group, and is directly flacking for the White House.

From my book titled The First Lady: A Comprehensive View of Hillary Rodham Clinton, … Read More ➡

Sharpton Rakes In Corporate Bucks But Stiffs Hotel

Sharpton photoAccording to today’s Memphis Daily News:

The South’s Grand Hotel is trying to collect a grand sum of money it claims is owed by the Rev. Al Sharpton’s nonprofit civil rights group.

The Peabody hotel has filed a lawsuit in Shelby County Circuit Court against Sharpton’s National Action Network seeking payment of almost $70,300, plus more than $17,000 in attorney’s fees and other costs. The lawsuit, which puts the total close to $88,000, was filed Tuesday…

The Peabody was the site of the 2008 national convention of the National Action Network (NAN). Corporate sponsors included Abbott Laboratories, Allstate, American Honda, Anheuser-Busch (since acquired by InBev), Chase Foundation, Chrysler, Colgate-Palmolive, Continental Airlines, Entergy, FedEx, Ford, GM, Home Depot, Johnson & Johnson, PepsiCo, Pfizer, UPS Foundation and Wal-Mart.

Dr. Carl Horowitz of the NLPC staff attended as an uninvited observer. Colgate-Palmolive accepted a ‘corporate excellence’ award, which NLPC asked the company … Read More ➡

The Hill: Ethics Panel Probes Allegation Involving Rangel

Isenberg photoFrom The Hill today:

The House ethics committee is investigating an alleged quid pro quo between Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) and an oil company executive, the subject of a lengthy New York Times article published in December.

Eugene Isenberg, the oil executive accused of trying to influence Rangel through a $1 million donation to the education center bearing Rangel’s name, is cooperating with an ethics committee investigation into the matter and predicts that the panel will find no wrongdoing.

The story by Susan Crabtree continues:

The assertion was caught on tape during a conversation with Peter Flaherty of the National Legal and Policy Center, a conservative watchdog that has investigated several ethics stories about Rangel. Flaherty approached Isenberg at the company’s annual meeting in Houston last week, taped the conversation and provided The Hill a transcript and audio recording.

As detailed in a previous entry, I actually questioned … Read More ➡

Weekly Standard Updates State of Corporate ‘Diversity’ Obsession

Business diversityIt is hardly front-page news that for the last couple decades America’s corporations have promoted racial, ethnic and sexual proportional representation, now rechristened “diversity,” with brisk efficiency. From orientation training onward, an individual employee in many companies can expect to be barraged with the message: Diversity must be lived. A lengthy feature story in the May 25 Weekly Standard, “Where Everybody Is Disadvantaged,” reveals, often to comic effect, how oppressively ingrained this mindset has become. Intrepid reporter Matt Labash provides a first-hand account of this corporate mischief, effectively amplifying observations contained in a 2007 NLPC Special Report prepared by the author of this blog. 

Whether out of principle or out of fear of boycotts, lawsuits and other unwanted publicity, corporate officials these days are pulling out the stops to Celebrate Diversity. Labash, a guest at the Ninth Annual National Multicultural Business Conference at the Disney Contemporary Resort in Orlando, Florida, … Read More ➡

Nabors Chairman Gets Testy With Flaherty About Rangel Center Donation; Calls NY Times ‘Full of Malarkey’

Eugene Isenberg photoEugene Isenberg, Chairman and CEO of Nabors Industries, is smiling in the photo at right but he wasn’t happy when I questioned him at the company’s annual meeting in Houston on Tuesday, June 2.

Isenberg’s controversial $1 million pledge to the so-called Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service at the City College of New York came at a time when Rangel helped preserve a loophole that allowed Nabors to save tens of millions in taxes after moving to the Bahamas. These facts were first reported in the New York Times in an article by David Kocieniewski in late 2008.

Under my questioning, Isenberg again denied any quid pro quo. He also denied that there was any “understanding” or a “wink and a nod.” He would not even concede an appearance problem.

Click here to download a 7-page pdf transcript of our exchange.

Isenberg was clearly annoyed … Read More ➡

House Ethics Committee Asks NLPC For Info on Rangel-Led, Citigroup-Funded Caribbean Junket

Carib junket photoOn May 22, the House Ethics Committee asked NLPC if to provide photographs, audio recordings and other materials related to a trip to the sunny Caribbean island of St. Maarten in November 2008 by the following five House members: Charles Rangel (D-NY), Donald Payne (D-NJ), Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX), Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D-MI), Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and Donna Christensen (D-VI).

I was present in St. Maarten, where I documented violations of House Rules that prohibit corporate sponsorship of travel and hospitality.

When I inquired whether this matter was under investigation, I was told that House Rules prevented the Committee from confirming an investigation. We provided the material on May 29 along with a formal request for an investigation.

Click here to download a 4-page pdf of the Complaint, without exhibits.

The sponsor of the trip was the Carib News Foundation, but it was funded by “lead sponsor” Citigroup, a major … Read More ➡

Page 80 of 84« First...102030...7879808182...Last »