Special to WorldTribune.com
As large corporations trip over themselves to virtue signal on behalf of Black Lives Matter in the wake of George Floyd’s killing in police custody in Minneapolis, there has been quite a bit of debate over whether this is all mere theater meant to boost sales or sincere identification with a radical cause.
As we’ve documented in this column over the past year, the commitment by well-known corporate brands to progressive ideology has been extensive.
Since taking up this beat last June, we’ve detailed a dizzying and often-numbing array of examples of major companies financially supporting massive Third World immigration, abortion, transgender children, the shadowy machinations of George Soros and the corrupt political grifting of Barack Obama, the Bush family and the Clintons.
A vast corporate alliance with radical foundations and progressive billionaires to support revolutionary organizations has mushroomed into a profound danger that threatens Western Civilization itself.
A fine way to highlight this joint venture, to borrow a business term, is to examine the numerous cases of former Obama administration officials playing key roles in corporations now publicly supporting Black Lives Matter as looting and violent riots scar America.
Michael Froman – Mastercard and Disney
Froman is a longtime friend of former president Barack Obama dating to their time together as Harvard Law School students in the 1980s.
Froman is a heavyweight Democrat fundraiser who served as U.S. Trade Representative for Obama from 2013-2017. He gained notoriety in 2016 during the WikiLeaks exposé of Obama adviser John Podesta’s hacked emails. It was revealed that Froman, an executive at Citigroup at the time, literally handpicked Obama’s Cabinet after the Illinois senator won election to the White House in 2008. As The New Republic puts it:
“This was October 6. The election was November 4. And yet Froman, an executive at Citigroup, which would ultimately become the recipient of the largest bailout from the federal government during the financial crisis, had mapped out virtually the entire Obama cabinet, a month before votes were counted. And according to the Froman/Podesta emails, lists were floating around even before that.”
Were going to focus on Froman more than other names merely as a way to show what this entire barrel of rotten apples is all about: Using racial grievance to advance globalism and the destruction of the nation state.
Froman is currently chairman of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth. According to his corporate bio, Froman’s job with Mastercard involves “advancing the company’s efforts to partner with governments and other institutions to address major societal and economic issues. He and his team drive financial inclusion and inclusive growth efforts and work to develop new businesses key to the company’s strategic growth.”
That description makes it sound as if Froman is serving as a quasi Secretary of State for the multinational behemoth. Which may indeed be true. Froman was responsible for writing the failed globalist Trans-Pacific Partnership pact, which was roundly criticized for seeking to radically boost corporate rights over the interests of individual nations. Froman was a featured speaker in November at a Bloomberg New Economy Forum symposium titled “Can Cities Help to Reshape the World Order?” This is a special project dear to the heart of former New York City mayor, billionaire and major presidential candidate flop Michael Bloomberg.
“Cities, in particular, are taking the lead in ushering in an organically evolving new ‘networked’ world order, where NGOs, community activists, private corporations, non-national states, and other stakeholders all collaborate and offer their unique perspective to locate solutions to our common problems,” an October article written by two Georgetown University scholars published in the urbanite publication CityLab stated, one month before the Bloomberg forum. Bloomberg has shared these same sentiments himself, writing in 2015 that “[i]nfluence will shift gradually away from national governments and toward cities, especially in countries that suffer from bureaucratic paralysis and political gridlock.” He bought CityLab in December.
In a December 2018 column, Froman, who is a “Distinguished Fellow” at the globalist Council on Foreign Relations, flat-out declared that when it comes to the U.S. role in global trade, the American people do not come first:
“Nationalism, populism, nativism and protectionism exploit people’s sense of being left behind and excluded from the system. That is why we need to focus on ensuring universal inclusion in the economic networks that allow individuals and families to achieve financial security and pursue opportunities for betterment. This imperative applies as much to a Kenyan farmer or an Egyptian garment worker as it does to an American now eking out a living in the gig economy.”
Froman’s current corporate employer, Mastercard, has given its salute to the social justice howling mob in recent days. “We hear the call that Black Lives Matter, and we wholeheartedly agree,” the company said in a June 4 statement. “Racism is against everything we stand for as a company, as a community, as individuals who strive to live peacefully, joyfully. The recent tragedies in the U.S., building on a long history of racial prejudice and injustice, are heartbreaking, frustrating and demand action.”
Froman also sits on the Board of Directors at Disney, which has announced it is donating $5 million to organizations that “advance social justice” in the wake of the rioting and violence of the Black Lives Matter protests.
Susan Rice – Netflix
Rice served as national security adviser to Obama from 2013-17 and as United Nations Ambassador from 2009-13. She currently sits on the Board of Directors for Netflix.
The company was among the earliest to telegraph its support for Black Lives Matter. “To be silent is to be complicit. Black lives matter. We have a platform, and we have a duty to our Black members, employees, creators and talent to speak up,” Netflix stated in a May 30 tweet.
Margaret Richardson – Airbnb
Richardson’s corporate bio fully captures her background:
“Before joining Airbnb in 2016, Margaret served as Chief of Staff to U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. where, among many other things, she managed the design and implementation of the Smart on Crime criminal justice reform work. Prior to joining the U.S. Department of Justice in 2009, Richardson served as the founding director of the Clean Slate Practice focused on supporting the legal rights of people with criminal records at the East Bay Community Law Center, a clinic of Berkeley Law School between 2005-2008.”
In September 2019, Airbnb released a “three-year report” on anti-discrimination policies it had been feverishly working to develop since being hit by accusations of racism. The company commissioned Holder to help whitewash it and partnered with radical leftist groups the NAACP and LULAC – the League of United Latin American Citizens – to boost its social justice credentials.
“The result [of the report] is one of the most detailed and honest reviews of a company’s role in fighting discrimination, including where efforts fell short, that I’ve ever witnessed,” Holder is quoted as saying on Airbnb’s website. Cut that man a check.
On June 2, Airbnb issued a ridiculously over-the-top “Activism & Allyship Guide” against white supremacy as part of its knee-bend to the Black Lives Matter crowd. Here’s a sample:
“Injustice is something that exists in the world and is faced daily by many different types of people. For many Black people, it ranges from microaggressions, like a woman clutching her purse when approaching a Black man or a person telling a Black woman she looks ‘neat and clean,’ to death either at the hands of the police or someone else who believes they are within their right to invalidate a Black person’s life.”
Josh Earnest – United Airlines
Former Obama press secretary Earnest is now Chief Communications Officer at United.
“Before joining United, Josh worked as a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, making appearances on the network’s leading news programs including the Today Show, Meet the Press and NBC Nightly News,” his United bio states. “Prior to that, Josh served for eight years in the Obama White House, first as deputy press secretary before being promoted to White House Press Secretary in 2014.”
Brett Hart, new president of United, has paid his required obeisance to Black Lives Matter. In a June 4 post on United’s website, Hart says:
“Friends, all lives matter… but let us not forget that using that term implies that all lives are equally at risk. They are not. And so today, I do say black lives matter. There is a specific problem occurring in the black community that is not happening in other communities on nearly the same level. This observation should not be divisive, but a wake-up call for all of us.”
David Plouffe – Chan Zuckerberg Initiative
Plouffe was 2008 campaign manager for Obama. He later worked for Uber before joining the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a philanthropic endeavor co-founded by Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg, in 2017. Plouffe spearheaded criminal justice reform programs while at CZI. He has since moved into a part-time role with CZI, the organization stated in October 2019:
“In addition, David Plouffe, who joined CZI in 2017 as Head of Policy & Advocacy, is stepping back from day-to-day operations into a new part-time role as a strategist in residence to help guide the organization’s ongoing issues-based policy work…. Under David’s leadership, CZI has grown into one of the largest philanthropic funders in criminal justice reform and has launched a number of critical efforts, including the bipartisan ‘Clean Slate’ initiative with over 25 partners working across the aisle to expand opportunities for formerly incarcerated people.”
On June 5, Mark Zuckerberg announced a fresh new round of Facebook censorship in the name of Black Lives Matter. “We have so far to go to overcome racial injustice in America and around the world, and we all have a responsibility and opportunity to change that,” Zuckerberg ominously wrote. “I believe our platforms will play a positive role in this, but we have work to do to make sure our role is as positive as possible.”
Demetrios Marantis – Visa
Marantis was Obama’s acting U.S. Trade Representative from March to May 2013 after having served as Deputy Trade Representative under Froman from 2009-2013. He is now Senior Vice President, Global Government Engagement, at Visa.
On June 3, Visa gave its dutiful pledge to help fight racial injustice:
“The senseless deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and other Black Americans should be a springboard to action, dialogue and change. We at Visa unfortunately cannot control all that happens in America, but we can certainly do our part. As a company we are on a journey to be inclusive and diverse. We have made progress, but not enough. Visa is committed to do more to help stop discrimination and racial injustice in America.”
Monica Lozano – Bank of America
Lozano was a member of Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness from 2011-12 and served on his Economic Recovery Advisory Board from 2009-11.
She is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the Bank of America. We detailed this bank’s numerous ties to radical causes in a 2019 column, as well as the incredibly well-connected Lozano’s leftist affiliations, which include her sitting on the board of the notorious globalist philanthropy the Rockefeller Foundation.
Bank of America has responded to the BLM agitation by announcing a jaw-dropping $1 billion donation to the cause of fighting “racial inequality.”
Andrew Bleeker, Robert Gibbs and Ben LaBolt – Bully Pulpit Interactive
Bleeker is founder of BPI. Before that, he was “the lead digital marketing strategist on both of President Obama’s campaigns as well as a senior advisor to Secretary [of State Hillary] Clinton.”
Gibbs is another former Obama press secretary. “Gibbs will be focused on executive communications, especially crisis comms, and social impact efforts for companies and brands,” at BPI, the March announcement of his hiring read. Before joining BPI, Gibbs served as global chief communications officer for McDonald’s.
LaBolt was National Press Secretary for the 2012 Obama-Biden campaign and Communications Director for former Obama Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel’s Chicago mayoral campaign.
In 2017 LaBolt wrote an opinion piece for CNBC bashing Trump over white supremacy and the Charlottesville, Virginia protests. The headline read, “Ditching Trump is not enough. Here’s what CEOs need to do now.” An excerpt is telling:
“Major brands don’t just sell products – they define our culture. Recent events are a clarion call to dedicate resources and attention to help us rebuild the fabric of our society. American leadership was never concentrated in just one person.
Businesses that got ahead of legislation when it comes to promoting diversity and inclusion have not been punished – in fact, they’ve been validated by their employees and customers.”
This is very much in line with LaBolt’s duties at BPI. The company states he “advises clients on how to transform their communications to break down barriers between paid, earned and owned in order to be more targeted and persuasive, reach beyond selling products by realizing a vision rooted in social impact, and help organizations under siege regain their reputation.”
BPI corporate clients include Aon Insurance, Exelon, McDonalds and Uber. Other clients include the ACLU, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Brookings Institute, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Human Rights Campaign and, of course, the Obama Foundation.
The organization has pledged to work with its clients to further the Black Lives Matter cause. “Black lives matter. We’re angry, sad, and we wish we could do more. For now, we’re trying to focus and help our team and clients as we each fight for change. But we can all do more,” it said in a June 1 tweet.
The Obama-corporate overlap should really be no surprise. Progressives want to destroy the American nation-state in the name of social justice while multinational corporations want to do so in the name of ever-greater access to a planetary market and the increased profits it sees coming with that. The kinship is 100 percent natural and indubitably authentic, given the same cherished goal that both sides share.