Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The Case For Boycotting Republican-Funding Dell

"But if you want money for people with minds that hate, all I can tell you is, brother, you'll have to wait." -- John Lennon (Revolution)

As you know, the motto of the Yellow Dog Blog is "no more reaching across the damn aisle." For better or worse, money occupies a central place in how our electoral process is conducted, and spending your hard-earned cash in a way that benefits George W. Bush and the Republican party gets pretty darned close to casting your vote in that direction.

Some things are far easier to boycott in principle than in day-to-day life. McDonald's is a big Republican contributor, but it's a difficult thing for the average parent to endure the cacophony of whining they'll get if the kiddies never get a Happy Meal – especially since most fast-good corporations grease the right-wing skids.
Other companies are so big and diverse that boycotting all of their products would be all but impossible.

But some things just jump right out at you and allow you to take a stand with an easy, viable option – here's one of those.

Thanks to Federal Election Commission regulations, we know who gives what to whom. Dell Computer Corporation and Dell's Chief Executive Officer, Michael Dell, are among the nation's largest contributors to everything we despise.

So every dollar we spend on a Dell computer – or anything else they sell – supports the agenda of George W. Bush and everything he, Karl Rove and Tom DeLay hold dear.

As of July 18, 2005, Michael Dell had contributed a total of $486,500 to candidates, party campaign groups or political action committees (PACs). Of that, $473,500 went to Republican candidates and conservative special interests.

Want specifics? Here's just a few places Dell's money went, along with dates and amounts as culled from Political Money Line (and cross-checked against NewsMeat.com).

Republican National Committee (RNC)

$25,000 (02/13/04)
$4,000 (07/19/04 )

National Republican Congressional Committee

$25,000 (12/31/01)
$10,000 (08/20/03)

National Republican Senatorial Committee

$7,500 (12/21/99)
$37,500 (07/23/01)
$25,000 (10/10/02)
$10,000 (08/20/03)

RNC Republican National State Elections Committee

$50,000 (07/27/00)
$200,000 (09/21/00)

Every Republican is Crucial PAC

$4,000 (02/17/04)

George W Bush and/or Bush-Cheney 04

$1,000 (03/31/99)
$1,000 (05/31/00)
$1,000 (02/03/04)
$2,000 (03/18/04)
$2,000 (04/01/04)

Tom DeLay


Dennis Hastert

$1,000 (11/04/02)

Rick Santorum

$1,000 (10/18/00)
$1,000 (06/28/04 )

Quite a disgusting Rogues Gallery, isn't it? So what to do when you need a new computer?

We're in luck, as computers are very much a standard, commodity item and you can get just as good a computer from true-blue Gateway, Inc., whose founder, Ted Waitt, supports almost all liberal causes.

Waitt has given an enormous amount of money to candidates such as John Kerry and Tom Daschle as well as the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

But that's just the small stuff. Democrat Waitt gave a whopping $5 million – yes, you read that right – to Joint Victory Campaign 2004, a 527 group that was started by America Coming Together and The Media Fund, with money divided between the two groups.

So why in the world would anyone put money in Michael Dell's pocket when you can buy a Gateway and enable Ted Waitt to help causes that matter to us?

Keep that in mind, next time you need to buy a computer.