Buying Blue

Back dur­ing the ill-fat­ed elec­tion, I remem­ber com­ing across a web site that pur­port­ed to show the “blue­ness” of com­pa­nies, relat­ing their polit­i­cal dona­tions ot their shade of blue or red. Last week, I thought to look for it again, and whether it is the same site or not, I found I’ve read up on their method­ol­o­gy, and while a lit­tle sim­ple (they are try­ing to expand it from sole­ly polit­i­cal dona­tion his­to­ry to also include cor­po­rate prac­tices and employ­ment poli­cies) it cer­tain­ly is a good place to start.

And so we are. Start­ing, I mean. We won’t be able to com­plete­ly cut out the red (though we could if only there was a Cost­co in the neigh­bor­hood), we will try to min­i­mize it.

Today we bought an iPod shuf­fle for our new run­ning habit, and we bought it at Com­pUSA, a com­pa­ny that does not give any polit­i­cal dona­tions at all. Tar­get gave $135,000 dol­lars (78% of it’s polit­i­cal dona­tions) to Repub­li­cans in the last elec­tion cycle. Best Buy gave $45,000 (100% of its con­tri­bu­tions) to Repub­li­cans.

We were shocked at Tar­get’s sta­tus. We always thought that it was a lib­er­al com­pa­ny, what with being from Min­neso­ta and all. Also on the “Say it ain’t so” list: ACE Hard­ware, Krispy Kreme, Lowe’s, Pets­mart, Williams-Sono­ma, Wendy’s, Pet­co, IHOP, Wal­green’s, and Wells Far­go.

And on the blue list, I was relieved to see: Barnes & Noble, Burling­ton Coat Fac­to­ry (home of Baby Depot), Cari­bou Cof­fee (which just opened up near us), Google, Jam­ba Juice (that one’s for you, Den­ny), Levi Strauss (just bought some), Linens n Things, Pan­era, Apple, Hilton, Gap, Net­flix, and Fron­tier Air­lines.

So today, we spent mon­ey at Younkers (only 11% Blue, sigh), Pan­era (100% Blue, yay!), and Com­pUSA (non donat­ing) so far. Tiffany is out look­ing for some more clothes, so she may swing us fur­ther red.

I’d like to point out that a lot of Busi­ness, espe­cial­ly the larg­er com­pa­nies, nat­u­ral­ly grav­i­tate towards the con­ser­v­a­tive side of the spec­trum. That’s fine when the Pres­i­dent is a fis­cal con­ser­v­a­tive. But when he is social­ly AND fis­cal­ly irre­spon­si­ble, I just can’t stand by.

So we are try­ing. Mon­ey where my mouth is.

By Danny

My name is Danny, and I grew up living overseas, but have settled in Kansas, where it turns out some of my family started, back when. I am helping to raise my own family, and hoping to be proud of what I've done when it's all over.