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Conservative consumers: Stand your ground

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By Michelle Malkin  •  April 25, 2012 04:22 AM


This fringe chump is wielding a disturbing amount of political power to silence free-market, limited government voices. What are you doing about it?

My column this week is a follow-up to last week’s piece on ALEC vs. the progressive mob/corporate appeasers. Be sure to read the entire column (plus my e-mail exchanges with several cowardly businesses that caved to the Van Jones crowd), click on all the links, get educated, educate others, and use this information to help fight back. The conservative movement needs all hands on deck.

Related: ALEC now faces a frivolous IRS complaint from longtime nemesis and anti-ALEC mob partner Common Cause.

Update: Color of Change is now targeting Amazon.

Get in the battlespace, people.

***

Conservative consumers: Stand your ground
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2012

Who is Rashad Robinson? And why has his fringe, race-baiting organization been able to pressure several major corporations into abandoning a pro-limited-government legislative association — all for a few cheap social-justice brownie points?

Conservative consumers need to get informed, get active and stand their ground against free speech-squelching progressive activists who have demonized the American Legislative Exchange Council. This isn’t just a battle over ALEC. It’s a war against the left’s shakedown artists taking aim at our freedoms of speech and association.

ALEC, as I reported last week, is the four-decade-old policy organization of state legislators and like-minded business people who believe in “the Jeffersonian principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty.” They are under fire from a longstanding network of liberal groups — tied to the Democratic Party — that are unhappy with effective conservative opposition at the state and federal legislative levels.

Anti-ALEC hypocrites seized on the Trayvon Martin shooting case in Florida to blame ALEC and Republican lawmakers for their advocacy of Stand Your Ground self-defense legislation – even though the case does not implicate the policy and ALEC followed Florida’s lead on the legislation. Moreover, eight of the 15 states that have adopted such polices were helmed by Democratic governors at the time of passage.

Robinson is spearheading the anti-ALEC campaign, along with Soros-backed Progress Now and a MoveOn.org/Big Labor political action committee, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC). While they claim to oppose black “voter suppression” by working to undermine anti-voter fraud bills backed by ALEC, Color of Change’s true agenda is to chill and suppress pro-capitalist, pro-Second Amendment, pro-low taxes and pro-law enforcement lobbying and legislating in the political marketplace.

Robinson is in charge of “Color of Change,” a radical activist group founded by disgraced 9/11 Truther, anti-police agitator, Occupy movement promoter and former Obama green jobs czar Van Jones. The group used Hurricane Katrina to condemn America as institutionally racist. Most shamefully, Jones and his fledgling group helped perpetuate director Spike Lee and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan’s wild conspiracy theories about government-engineered black genocide in New Orleans.

Before taking over Jones’ demagogue duties, Robinson previously lobbied for felon voting rights at the left-wing Soros family-backed Fair Vote. The group has repeatedly fought common-sense efforts to rein in voter fraud. Unsurprisingly, Robinson is close to the community organizer in chief’s administration. While media director at gay rights group GLAAD, Robinson traveled to Serbia in 2010 to officially represent the U.S. at a gay pride festival. He was invited by the Obama State Department, which sponsored the trip.

Robinson claims that his group has “more than 800,000 members” and “is the nation’s largest online civil rights group.” The numbers, however, don’t add up. The Color of Change Twitter account has fewer than 14,600 followers. Robinson himself, acclaimed by leftists as a new media guru, has a measly 1,400 followers after three years on the premiere social networking platform.

But the foot soldiers of radical organizer Saul Alinsky know how to conjure up facades and false narratives. Over the past several weeks, Robinson has released a series of press releases claiming mass victories in the Color of Change campaign to boycott ALEC. The bulletins are being dutifully regurgitated by sympathetic journalists such as National Public Radio’s Peter Overby — a former staffer at the anti-ALEC group Common Cause, a fact that he failed to disclose to radio listeners in at least two recent hit pieces on ALEC.

Color of Change’s corporate appeasers include McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Mars Inc., Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Kraft Foods, Intuit, Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, Reed Elsevier (owner of LexisNexis), American Traffic Solutions and Arizona Public Service. This week, Robinson also claimed that Yum Brands and Procter and Gamble had dropped their memberships as a result of “hundreds” of Color of Change phone calls.

On Tuesday, I called Procter and Gamble and asked them how many phone calls they received. Company spokeswoman Christine Wever refused to answer. I asked whether the company had met at any time over the past year with Color of Change or any other protest group regarding their specific complaints about ALEC. Wever refused to answer.

I also called the media office at Yum Brands several times with the same questions. No response by end of business Tuesday.

It’s not enough for conservative consumers to avoid cowardly businesses that cave to Van Jones and company. Beating back the anti-ALEC mob means getting ahead of them. Color of Change and its “hundreds” of callers are now pressuring State Farm (tweet them here) and Johnson and Johnson (tweet them here) to join the spineless herd and cut ties to ALEC.

I’ll say it again: Silence is complicity. Speak now or surrender your ground.

***

Let me repeat:

State Farm and Johnson & Johnson are getting pressured by Color of Change to withdraw their ALEC memberships. Are you a State Farm policyholder? Are you a mom who uses J&J products? Are you allowing Rashad Robinson to speak for you?

Tweet State Farm.
State Farm’s chairman is Edward B. Rust.
More contact info for State Farm.
Main office:
State Farm Insurance
1 State Farm Plz Bloomington, IL 61701
(309) 766-2311.

Tweet Johnson & Johnson.
Leave a message for Johnson & Johnson via their website.
Main office:
One Johnson & Johnson Plaza
New Brunswick, New Jersey 08933
(732) 524-0400

***

Emails from duck-and-cover companies that caved into the spawn of Van Jones…

From Kraft Foods:

susan.davison@kraftfoods.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 2:30 PM
subject: Kraft Foods Statement

Hi Michelle,

Thanks for reaching out about our membership in the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Our statement is below.

We belong to many external groups, including ALEC, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that promotes growth and fiscal responsibility. ALEC covers numerous issues but our involvement has been strictly limited to discussions about economic growth and development, transportation and tax policy. We did not participate in meetings or conversations related to other issues.

Our membership in ALEC expires this spring and for a number of reasons, including limited resources, we have made the decision not to renew.

Best regards,
Susan

Susan Davison
Director, Corporate Affairs
Kraft Foods Inc.

-
Michelle Malkin
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 3:22 PM
to susan.davison

Thanks for this statement, but it doesn’t answer my specific questions:

1) Did Kraft meet with Color of Change/its representatives/or any
related groups regarding their grievances about ALEC over the last
year?

2) How many phone calls did your company receive complaining about
your association with ALEC?

Thank you.

Michelle

-

susan.davison@kraftfoods.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 4:13 PM
to me

Michelle,

I’m sorry, I don’t have anything else to share beyond our statement.

Susan

-

From Proctor and Gamble:

Wever, Christine wever.cm@pg.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 11:40 AM
to me

Michelle:

Thanks for reaching out to us and for your inquiry. Below is a statement
you can attribute to me as company spokesperson or just as a company
statement. (Please note the decision about ALEC was made independently of
any protest activity. Our memberships change every year for a variety of
reasons.)

“We review all of our trade association and policy group memberships on an
annual basis. Decisions about which memberships we retain are guided by
budgetary considerations, value to the business and engagement on issues
core to our ability to compete in the marketplace. Our 2012 membership
review has been ongoing since January, and as a result of this review, we
have decided that we will not renew our memberships in ALEC and NCSL in
the 2012-13 Fiscal Year.”

Thank you for reaching out.

Christine Wever

-

Michelle Malkin
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 11:45 AM
to Christine

Christine:

Thank you. The statement does not address my specific questions.

The group Color of Change continues to claim “victory” and explicitly suggests that you made your decision because of their protests.

My first question is: Has P&G at any time over the last year met with Color of Change or any other protest group regarding their specific complaints about ALEC?

My second question is: How many total calls, if any, did P&G receive complaining about its former membership in P&G?

Thank you.

-

Wever, Christine wever.cm@pg.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 11:48 AM
to me

As noted below, the decision about ALEC was made independently of any protest activity. Decisions about which memberships we retain are guided by budgetary considerations, value to the business and engagement on issues core to our ability to compete in the marketplace.

Thank you.
Christine

-

Michelle Malkin
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 12:56 PM
to Christine

Can you get back to me on these two questions? Thanks.

Best,
Michelle

…Once again, these are my specific questions:

My first question is: Has P&G at any time over the last year met with Color of Change or any other protest group regarding their specific complaints about ALEC?

My second question is: How many total calls, if any, did P&G receive complaining about its former membership in P&G?

-

Wever, Christine wever.cm@pg.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 1:37 PM
to me

I won’t have anything beyond the statement below. Thank you.

Christine

-

From Yum Brands:

Ferguson, Virginia Virginia.Ferguson@yum.com
Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 3:24 PM
to me

Michelle – I just received a message that you are on deadline. We’re not members.

Thanks for checking.

-

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 6:10 PM
to Virginia

That’s not what I asked. Will you please call me? I have tried reaching your company all day. [number redacted]

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