The 2004 election caused many vote-minded Democrats to start thinking about how to attract so-called “values voters.” It wasn’t expected to be an easy task. But now evangelical leaders seem to be trending left, almost running after Democratic politicians.
In the news recently has been growing concern among religious conservatives about environmental issues. Christian theology always has held that mankind was to act as a good steward of God’s creation. The danger of newfound evangelical environmental enthusiasms is that religious believers with better intentions than knowledge will mistake command-and-control government regulations with good stewardship.
Even more curious is the emergence of Chuck Colson, former Nixon aide and founder of Prison Fellowship, as corporate scourge. In a column entitled “Disposable Workers,” he recently denounced “rapacious unrestrained economic power.” He added, “With all due respect to the late Milton Friedman, corporations’ social responsibility goes beyond maximizing shareholders’ returns.”
What set off this tirade? Electronics seller Circuit City announced that it was letting go 3,400 employees. Complained Colson: “There is no consideration of an employee’s productivity or quality of work. Nor is there any claim that the company can’t afford to pay what the workers are currently making — only that it doesn’t have to.”
To read Colson’s column, one might think that Circuit City’s president simply got up one morning and said: I feel like being a little “rapacious” today. But that’s not the case.
The consumer electronics industry has taken a serious hit because greedy, amoral capitalists have been discounting flat-panel TVs. Prices have fallen far more swiftly than industry analysts had expected. As a result, Fred Hickey, editor of High-Tech Strategist newsletter, told the Wall Street Journal — in an article dated two days before Colson released his column — that Hickey was bearish on both Best Buy and Circuit City, the industry behemoths.
Moreover, Circuit City is lagging behind its rival. Pali Research analyst Stacey Widlitz told the Journal that “Best Buy is certainly able to navigate a difficult environment much better than Circuit City,” which, she added, remained “in transition.”p>Indeed, the day before Colson’s column the Journal ran a story entitled, “Best Buy Strategy Pays Off as Circuit City Falters.” Reported the Journal: br> /p>
Both of the leading U.S. consumer-electronics retailers continue to face pressure on profits from plummeting flat-screen-TV prices this year. But Best Buy’s rapid expansion in recent years and its better grip on retailing basics have helped it offset the impact of TV price wars. Meanwhile, its smaller rival’s turnaround efforts have boosted costs without yet showing a similar increase in sales.br> Circuit City’s revenue increase was anemic while expenses rose eight percent over a year ago. The company ran a net loss in the last quarter of 2006 after taking a charge for restructuring costs. Share prices fell.
Nor is Circuit City alone in its troubles. Reported the Journal: “Other consumer-electronics retailers are also battling a tough environment. Tweeter Home Entertainment Group Inc., RadioShack Corp. and CompUSA are among retailers that have announced store closings recently.” RadioShack fired 400 employees to cut costs.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?