Hasn't anyone paid attention to these otherwise socialist entrepreneurs?
They wanted to create a socialist paradise with their ice cream, and they have some of the most diverse flavors.
Ben Cohen wanted to bend capitalism to social justice causes.
Irv Deutsch landed a production job at the Ben & Jerry's ice-cream factory in Waterbury, Vt., in September 1988 at $7.40 an hour. One of Deutsch's early memories was of a companywide meeting during which cofounder Ben Cohen exhorted his workers to embrace the company's social mission. Deutsch recalls that Cohen was running into "a lot of negative sentiment" on the subject from both his board and his employees. In their minds, making money and fomenting social change didn't always mix.
How did this social mission turn out?
Deutsch scribbled a note in response to Cohen's speech and placed it in the company's suggestion box. He reminded Cohen of the work of legendary psychologist Abraham Maslow, best remembered for his theory of a "hierarchy of needs," which holds that people must first secure the basics of food, clothing, and shelter before they can grapple with the larger questions of life. It was nice to talk about solving the world's problems, but what about the everyday concerns facing many of Ben & Jerry's workers? After all, Cohen was a multimillionaire businessman and Vermont transplant with a lengthy social agenda. His workers dwelt in the other Vermont of low wages and long winters, hidden behind the state's pastoral facade of green hills and white clapboard. With that in mind, Deutsch added this postscript: "Charity begins at home, so leave it in my mailbox."
|Now MoveOn.org is defacing money|
Later on, about twelve years later, Ben and Jerry's sold "out" to a larger corporation:
In Act Two, set in 2000, the mood sours. Ben & Jerry’s is sold (out) to Unilever, the world’s third-largest consumer goods company, described by one commentator as “a giant multinational clearly focused on the financial bottom line.”1 News of the sale sends “shudders and shivers through the socially responsible business community.”2 An all-too-brief and unexpectedly wonderful trip becomes a bummer. If Ben & Jerry’s was a kind of corporate Woodstock, this sale was its Altamont. (As a fitting coda, Unilever discontinued Wavy Gravy in 2003 because it wasn’t profitable enough.)
So, they were all about making money, and yet Ben wants to get the money out of politics. What?!
|Ben and Jerry's Cold Cash (Uziel302)|
Does any want these ice cream men's take on politics, especially money in politics?
Now, with Ben Cohen's syrupy endorsement, MoveOn.org wants to deface money in the name of getting money out of politics:
This is Ben Cohen, the "Ben" of Ben & Jerry's ice cream. I've decided to put my money where my mouth is by building a national, grassroots campaign to get Big Money out of politics.
The truth is that I can't outspend the big political donors whose influence is corrupting our political system. I can't chase them out, scare them out, or shout them out. But together, we can all stamp them out.
The Stamp Stampede is a movement of tens of thousands of Americans legally stamping dollar bills with a simple message: "Stamp Money Out Of Politics—Amend the Constitution."
So, the Big Left-Wing Movement machine wants to stamp out the money. Yet they want you and me to donate to this big machine in order to make it happen. Really?
You can stamp your foot ... and you'll end up with a footache. Or you can stamp your dollar bills (yes, it's perfectly legal) and let your money do the talking. As your bills circulate, so will your message about reclaiming our democracy. It's like a petition on steroids—each bill will be seen an average of 875 times!
And while you're taking action individually, you're also funding MoveOn's collective action—which is key if we're going to overpower the Big Money that wants to keep buying and selling our political system.
Someone stamp this what it really is -- a terrible idea.
Perhaps even an illegal one.