Friday, January 26, 2007

What Business do you Boycott and Why?

Preachrboy asked an interesting question the other day. What would it take for you to boycott a business? Boycotting Pabst because you don't drink doesn't count. Boycotting McDonalds because you don't like fast food doesn't count. I am talking about businesses that you would otherwise patronize, but you don't because..........

I will answer the question myself. I don't have any boycotts going, but I sometimes consider boycotting Citgo gas stations because I think Hugo Chavez is a threat to his countrymen and neighboring countries.

Your turn.

15 comments:

Wade said...

I don't know what my criteria are, but I boycott Citgo. I also boycott French and Californian wines. I geuss my boycotts are kind of soft though. I would not run out of gas before buying at a citgo. I also drink French wine if some one offers it, I just don't purchase it myself.

Preachrboy said...

"Soft Boycott" I wonder if another way of saying that is, "convenient boycott"? (Not that there's anything wrong with that, Wade... just clarifying) I suppose I too have my "soft boycotts", much like yours.

Criteria? I guess I asked the question because I have always struggled to define mine too. Upon reflection, I think that the only time I would boycott something is if I KNOW buying a product/service will significantly support something to which I strongly object.

CONSUMER KNOWLEDGE
The first criterion- my knowledge of such a situation. It's almost impossible to know where your money goes when you buy a given product, unless you do ridiculous amounts of research. Even then, I suppose there are very few things I could buy that don't have SOME objectionable connection. Sometimes you find things out by accident, though.

SIGNIFICANT CONNECTION
So the second criteron, is how much my money is contributing to the thing objectionable versus how much it makes my life difficult (this is the convenience factor). What percentage of my purchase will support something I don't? (And what other good things will my purchase support?)

STRONGLY OBJECTIONABLE
And the third, I think, is how objectionable the objectionable thing is. I would boycott a company supportive of abortion rather quickly compared to a small business whose owner and I differ on our politics.

I think one should weigh out these factors when deciding to boycott or not to boycott. Layer this over how convenient/inconvenient it is to boycott something (a la Wade).

sting said...

Wow wade, why do you boycott Californian wines? I could understand the French wine boycott since nobody likes the French (just joking) but why Californian? I buy a lot of wine, so really curious.

Wade said...

Sting,
First off, I love your music, I cannot wait for the Police reunion tour. J/K
Preacherboy and Sting,
To the extent that we live in a free market, how "we the people" spend our money is really our biggest voice. I don't spend a lot of money in the grand scheme of things, but I take the responsibility of how I spend my money seriously. The reason I use the term "soft boycott" is I would drive myself and my family crazy if took a position of, absolutely never, no way, boycott. So if I go out to eat and all they have is French wine (which has happened)I will drink the French wine. Saying this is a "convenient boycott" makes it seem more flippant than it is. I would say the things I choose to boycott are actually boycotted (by me) about 97% of the time, maybe more. When I think of boycotts I think of the things Ghandi did in India or Rev. King's Bus boycott. I don't know for sure, but I imagine when those guys and their people boycotted something it was 100% no matter how sucky (very intellectual word Huh?)it got for them. Therefore, I would not feel right using the word boycott in regard to my spending activities.

I avoid California wines because I don't agree philosophically with most of the population of the state and I choose not to give them my money. I do however purchase wine from countrys whose population probably doesn't agree with me philosophically either, so explain that.

sting said...

Actually the name sting is a combo of my first and last name, nothing to do with the group.

You must realize wade that boycotting California wine because you do not like Californians doesn't sound very reasonable. I could understand individual vineyards if you happen to know the owners are involved in something you are against, but not the entire state of California. I thought perhaps there was something I was missing. Good thing since I just restocked my wine cabinet with one of my favorite Californian wines.

There are many more businesses based out of California, in fact I believe most computer/software companies are based there, do you boycott everything from CA or just the wine?

Wade said...

Sting,
I do not claim my wine thing is rational. One day I decided of was sick of some of the political choices California was making (ones that would have effects outside of CA) so I decided so not drink their wine. It was a bit halfcocked on my part because I am sure most of the fruit I eat comes from there.
Most of my spending choices have to do with positive impacts rather than negative. For instance I think it is cool that Australia and Chile have found a niche in the wine market and I choose to incourage that over California. The fact that it fits in with my anti-CA wine thing is just sweetens the deal. Maybe some Chilean or Australian wine companies do bad things with their money, I don't know, I am too lazy to follow the money trail of every product I purchase.
To answer your question, I also avoid beer from California. But yes, it is mostly just the wine, not all products. I assure you my withholding of money to the California wine market is not making an impact, so fear not. Nor to I really advocate everyone follow my lead. I may be missing out on some really good wines from California, but I am not enough of an aficionado to know the difference. I know this is a bit of a departure from most of the blogging people do. I am not claiming, in this case, that my position is the most logical, rational, or righteous, nor do I urge everyone one to do it. It can just be my thing and I am fine with that.

sting said...

Well OK as long as you realize it's not rational :) . I've discovered some Hungarian wines lately that are very good, unfortunately they are hard to find around here. I realize I am really getting off topic now, but I haven't heard anyone boycotting Hungarian products so I think I'm safe.

The only thing I do my best to boycott is Walmart btw. Not hard to do because I hate the place.

Kat said...

I boycott buying diamonds. I read about the atrocities in Africa that have happened because of diamonds. Ever since then, every time I see someone's giant sparkly diamond I can't help but to think that it may have cost someone an arm and a leg (literally).

eric said...

I boycott major league baseball. After the big strike 10 years ago I stopped paying attention. Somehow the mega-millionaire owners fighting with the multi-millionaire players just rubbed me the wrong way. Their attitudes towards fans' interests were at best ambiguous, and at worst condescendingly negative. I have never watched a game on TV since then. When we moved back to WI I took my kids to a game in Miller Park so they could have the experience, but I'll never go again.

realdebate said...

Citgo

Wade said...

I think Denis is boycotting Free Racine.

Denis Navratil said...

I am busy Wade et al. I will have lots to say in a few days. My boycott of Freeracine is only temporary, I assure you.

Wade said...

Sort of a "soft boycott".

Preachrboy said...

how convenient.

Anonymous said...

Wow, man! Cool site!
online drug store
drug store pharmacy online
discount drug store online
canadian online drug store
cheap online drug store
prescription drug store online
canada online drug store
drug foreign online store
online drug store ultram
drug medication online prescription store
drugstore online
online drugstore
online drugstores
mexico online drugstores
1 drugstore online
canadian online drugstores
online drugstores spain
foreign drugstores online
See you later, thanks
cialis viagra