Corportations and this Holiday Seasons American Consumer


 Let me provide you with a quote from Abraham Lincoln. It's taken from a letter from Lincoln to (Col.) William F. Elkins, Nov 21, 1864. Some have disputed its authenticity. Given all, of the quotes and writings, attributed to one of, if not our greatest President, I see his well-documented vision as right on target and applicable to 2014. Imagine that, to be astute enough to predict the behavior of big business in the twenty-first century.   This version includes a little more context from the letter itself and is as follows,       
 "We may congratulate ourselves that this cruel war is nearing its end. It has cost a vast amount of treasure and blood....
  It has indeed been a trying hour for the Republic; but I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and   causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a    result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.
I feel at this moment more anxiety for the safety of my country than ever before, even in the midst of war.
God grant that my suspicions may prove groundless."
                                                                              --- Abraham Lincoln
 
 First of all, most Americans work for some corporation. So why wouldn’t they want to see the company they work for earning maximum profits? Some have family members, like dads and granddads who fed, housed and educated their family on corporate wages. So they can’t help but have an affiliation for that particular entity. So what the heck is my problem you ask?
We have no problem with our capitalistic economy or society.
 
 It’s because I am a proponent of all US businesses having high moral expectations while hiring personnel that will carry out those same standards.
There are major policy questions that come up in top management business meetings all the time. The decision on how to proceed is to be made. I am just saying, more often than not, the American Consumer is not a consideration in the equation. From all reports, it’s about winning; more and more profit no matter what the cost to the health and standard of living for the American Consumer. It’s about deniability; hire an expensive law firm to answer plausible charges to avoid cutting off the profit spigot or losing one drop of revenue. It’s the fact they moved their so-called corporate headquarters overseas in order to avoid paying their fair share of taxes to the Government who initially granted and or recognized their firm as a corporate entity. They are developing election PACS or contributing to a particular candidate so that those elected officials will carry out the will of the corporation rather than the will of the American People. It is those corporations that don’t seem to have a soul and are the source of greed, corruption, and God knows what else. They also validate our nation’s sixteenth presidents concern in the quote noted above.  
 
Some may remember years ago when the Enron Corporation Scandal broke. High price collages spoke about including a new subject in their business curriculum that would teach their students morals, integrity, assuming responsibility for all deeds and actions. Or even later, how about the recent collapse of the Housing Industry precipitated by the banking industry’s greed with no accountability. It took the same inept, according to them, US Government to bail them out. All of them took US taxpayers money, sat on it while refusing to lend money to help in the home foreclosures debacle. Where was the moral balance in that collective decision?
 
You see, I have a problem when a business person smiles, and ask me to make a commitment to use their services, or buy their product. Take my hard earned cash and use a portion of the funds to fund the campaign of a racist politician to make stupid and intolerant laws, while suppressing an individual’s right to vote.  Or how about running overseas sweat shops in order to make cheap products? This practice results in driving American made manufacturers out of business and increasing their profit.
 
Or they’re unwilling to support the idea of a minimum wage, not because it reduces the profit margin, but just because…of what?  They read the same studies that indicated a higher minimum wage is a win-win for individuals, governments Internal Revenue and the economy as a whole. Average people spend money on goods and services so the dollar circulates faster. One doesn’t need a degree in Economics to figure that out. Yet, you have an entire political party of these United States that doesn’t support a minimum wage increase. And who were the biggest contributors to their political campaigns?  Why some of the same aforementioned entities in this article. Their names are no secret; we know who they are as do most all Americans.
 
You there…Mr. & Mrs. American Consumer, we need to hold a debate on spending our hard earned money at places that do not support our ideals and community. Dealing with some corporations is a one way street. You pay, they take, they horde and stash cash. They work on plans to lower your wages, put rising health care responsibility on you, and pay to kill or defund government safeguards like the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) or Food and Drug Administration.
 
So what should we do as American Consumers and the public in general? The most important thing is to send a message this holiday season. Let’s spend the bulk or even half of our Christmas money at small business across this nation. I know, you still may have to go to a car dealer, Best Buy, JC Penney’s, Sears or the like for some big items. We cannot change the world overnight, but we can spend some of our money where it will do the best for us. How about buying your meat and can goods from a local meat market or store? The nationality of the store owner is less important than channeling a large part of your money in a different direction this year. Look on the Internet, you will be surprised at who is selling what out there. A lot of the mom and pop stores have websites too.  
 
Here are a couple of networks to search for minority and or women own entities to buy from this Christmas. They are websites that allow you to search their site for a business that carries a product or service you may be looking for. Check them out, http://www.blackbusinessnetwork.com/Home/   then there is… http://www.minority-biz.com/index.php
They may have a store listing in your local area of which you were not aware. You should also report back to those websites of your experiences with their recommendations. We still want quality value for our dollar no matter where we spend it. 
 
These websites prove there is a movement already alive and growing. People are fed up supporting corporations that take more than money from you and I. Be aware of where and with whom you spend your hard earned dollars this holiday season and on throughout 2015. By this time next year, we will talk about the changes the American Consumer forced by redirecting their expenditures over the past year. Let’s make old Abe proud and assure him that freedom of choice was worth fighting for back then as it is today.   
 
Join us for our BTR Radio show on Wednesday November 26th at 4:00pm. We will cover this same subject with our special guest. We have a great guest, in Kevin L. Nichols of http://KLNConsultinggroup.com  Call in with your questions at 347-237-4908.  
 
        
 Peace, Happy Holidays and make it a day in which Jesus Christ would be proud of you,
 
Codis Hampton II 
                                                                                         
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Copyright 2011 Codis Hampton II, all rights reserved. A bi-weekly blog for your enjoyment
 

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