AMAC Exclusive – by Seamus Brennan
As the forces of woke capitalism continue to terrorize ordinary Americans, right-leaning investors find themselves in a difficult position. The left’s ever-tightening grip on American corporations has led many conservatives to unknowingly buy stock in companies that embrace wokeism. But now, conservatives and others who do not subscribe to the tenets of woke politics have a way to ensure their investments are not directed to people and companies that are actively working against their values through an organization called 2ndVote, along with affiliated companies 2ndVote Advisers and 2ndVote Funds.
Andy Puzder, an Advisory Board Member for 2ndVote Advisers – as well as the former CEO of CKE Restaurants and President Trump’s first nominee for Secretary of Labor – told AMAC Newsline that 2ndVote’s investment philosophy is consistent with that of economist Milton Friedman, who believed companies “should focus on returns for shareholders” and that “companies that focus on profit will be more profitable than companies that don’t.” Capitalism, he continued, “is the only economic system that ties your success to meeting the needs of other people,” going on to claim that businesses’ sole focus should be the generation of profits.
“We don’t want them out there trying to change the world,” Puzder said in reference to CEOs and management teams imposing progressive values onto their investors. “We have a political system that we rely on to make those kinds of decisions. The reason we have the business community is to create prosperity and abundance and opportunity for people, and when you try and manipulate the business sector so that it’s no longer trying to advance the interests of investors, you’ll see the economy decline. And that would be bad for everybody.”
2ndVote Advisors President and CEO Daniel Grant echoed Puzder’s sentiments, telling AMAC Newsline that “a lot of people in this country are patronizing” progressive companies, which are then “turning around and using their profits in a way that people are unaware of, and if they [were] aware, would not agree with. And if you invest in these companies, essentially, you are being taxed by these companies to fund a social justice agenda that you would not agree with.”
Grant went on to reaffirm the organization’s primary objective as incentivizing companies “to focus on creating shareholder value, focus on traditional charity, and leave the social justice engineering to the individual—which is where it should be.” “Free market capitalism,” he continued, “benefits all of us.”
2ndVote has been working for years to educate consumers “to make informed decisions that align their dollars with their values, empowering them to impact corporate/organization activism.” The group uses information, including corporate donations, documentation of sponsorships for political events, and lobbying efforts to score companies and charities on a 1-5 scale from “liberal” to “conservative” to determine their political leanings—with the ultimate goal of eliminating the “stakeholder capitalism” trend that has led corporate America to increasingly promote a progressive agenda.
Though 2ndVote supports companies that its scale finds to be “neutral” as well as those it finds to be “conservative,” its score system rates companies on six different issues that conservatives tend to care about most, including abortion, First Amendment rights, Second Amendment rights, civil society (including border security and law enforcement), education, and the environment. These six issues are used to determine a composite score, which conservative or libertarian investors can use to direct their dollars in the “right” direction.
2ndVote Advisers, a sister company to 2ndVote, is the “first and only investment adviser” that reviews companies’ environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investment criteria to guarantee all investments are “ESG Neutral,” so that right-of-center Americans “no longer have to compromise their values for a return on investment.” 2ndVote Advisers prides itself on advocating for “profitability over politics” and seeks to return the United States economy to a more free market system where politics are kept out of the board room.
According to an April 2021 poll conducted by Scott Rasmussen, 66 percent of American adults believe companies should avoid taking positions on political issues, but only 43 percent claim to know the political positions of the companies they patronize. Until every conservative investor is aware of what causes his or her money is being used to advance, conservatives, libertarians, 2ndVote and other such organizations have a critical role to play in defeating “woke capitalism”.
In an era when everything from Major League Baseball to soft drinks has become politicized, the health of our society and the strength of our democracy may depend on it.