Occupy Wall Street: You have the wrong address
MEMO: To the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protestors who, for the most part, are strong supporters of Mr. Obama. In 2008, listed among the top 20 contributors to Mr. Obama’s presidential campaign were Wall Street firms: Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Citigroup, and Morgan Stanley plus Wall Street law firms: Sidley Austin LLP, WilmerHale LLP, Skadden, Arps, et al, and Latham & Watkins. (Source: OpenSecrets.org.)
These “Anarchists for Big Government,” as columnist Mark Steyn calls them, also need to know Mr. Obama spent the bulk of his stimulus package to bail out the above-listed Wall Street investment banking firms, and on union pension funds managed by those firms, along with the auto industry which also gets its funding from bond issues floated by Wall Street investment banking houses.
Moreover, the top fund-raising “bundlers” for Mr. Obama were Wall Street law firms and banking houses. Bundlers are well-connected people who get their friends and colleagues to give them checks which they deliver in one big “bundle” to their candidate. In order to be awarded an ambassadorship, one needs to bundle at least $500,000. Hello. Instead of Wall Street, you OWS folks might consider camping outside of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
MEMO: To the Darden Corporation of Orlando, Florida, the owner of Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Longhorn Steakhouses, The Capital Grill, Bahama Breeze, and Seasons 52 restaurants. You might want to rethink your corporate policy that forbade the Golden Key Kiwanis Club of Oxford, Alabama, from displaying the American Flag while it members recited the Pledge of Allegiance. The local manager told the Kiwanis Club that the presence of the American Flag might disturb the other patrons. Who knew that many Iranians ate at an Olive Garden in Alabama?
Breaking news: Darden Corporation now says its Oxford Olive Garden misinterpreted its flag policy. Always blame your subordinates for your own mistakes. But Darden is sending a vice president to Oxford to make an in-person apology to the Golden Key Kiwanis Club.
You wonder how corporations who spend fortunes on advertising and public relations get themselves into such impossible situations. When these incidents occur, your faithful observer starts checking whether these corporations give most of their money to Democrats or Republicans. Some excellent sources are: The Blue Pages: A Directory of Companies Rated by Their Politics and Practices (2006), OpenSecrets.org (2011) and the Federal Election Commission (F.E.C.).
Surprisingly, the Darden Corporation gives 92-percent to Republicans and 8-percent to Democrats. But this is not the first time a generally conservative corporation has gotten crosswise with the public over something so fundamental to the American character as respect for the American Flag. Or, even Christmas.
A few years ago, Wal-Mart, which gives 78-percent to Republicans and 22-percent to Democrats, decided to ignore the Christmas Season. Wal-Mart employees were even forbidden to initiate Christmas greetings with customers or respond to customers who wished them a Merry Christmas.
Needless to say, the public-relations roof fell in on Wal-Mart. The no-Christmas-season fiasco has not been repeated. But, curious as to how something as uncharacteristic as the no-Christmas-season fiasco could happen, I contacted a dear friend in Arkansas who has very close ties to Wal-Mart executives, past and present. My source told me that sometimes Wal-Mart hires graduates from the top Ivy-League business schools some of whom think Political Correctness comes before traditional American values. One wonders what happened to the authors of the ill-fated idea to ignore Christmas. Maybe they ended up in Orlando.
If you want to put your mouth where you money is: Denny’s gives 100-percent to Democrats while Chick-Fil-A gives 100-percent to the GOP. (Source: The Blue Pages.)
Nationally syndicated columnist, William Hamilton, was educated at the University of Oklahoma, the George Washington University, the U.S Naval War College, the University of Nebraska, and Harvard University.
©2011. William Hamilton.