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Do boycotts really work? Who do they hurt the most?

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panader0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 04:29 PM
Original message
Do boycotts really work? Who do they hurt the most?
I gave up 'Angel Soft' toilet paper because of the Kochs, but do boycotts ever really hurt those at the top?
An earlier poster pointed out that non GP products are probably not union made (some are).
When the United States had sanctions on Iraq, do you think it hurt Saddam, or like many previous boycotts and sanctions, don't they really hurt the little guys, the common people? I'd love to bring down the Kochs and their ilk, but I am unsure about what tactic is most effective. If every Georgia Pacific product remained on the shelves unsold, the Kochs would still be billionaires, and all the workers would be out of work. It's a quandary to me.
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
1. I don't know if they work,
but I can tell you I never shop at WalMart. I try not to care if others do, try to minimize my preaching about it. But I won't go into one. Ever.
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TheCowsCameHome Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 04:52 PM
Response to Original message
2. I really don't know....
....but I feel better knowing I didn't support a place or business that in my opinion deserves to be boycotted.

I do hate to see workers in the trenches lose out.

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Luminous Animal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 04:56 PM
Response to Original message
3. When you boycott one company's products, another company has to take up the slack
and hire additional workers.

A lot of DUers who said that they would boycott also indicated that they would substitute for "green" versions.
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elfin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 05:10 PM
Response to Original message
4. They work for me
They guide my purchases and if I HAVE to shop at Walmart for necessity in a rural area, I donate the dollars of the buy to a nearby library.

I feel better -- and so do my favorite non-profits.

It is beside the point whether they "work" or not. I like the info to make my consumer choices.
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JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 05:28 PM
Response to Original message
5. I don't think the point is to hurt someone.
I think the point is to demonstrate solidarity.

To feel you are part of something.

We are so helpless in the face of the extreme wealth of people like the Kochs. The only expression left for us is to boycott.

Marches are ignored.

But when I can't accept my powerlessness, I simply don't participate.

That is also why I do not subscribe to cable TV.

It is a matter also of having control.

The wealthy gain control over our lives by wielding their money as a weapon. When I refuse to give a company or person like that my money, I am responding in kind.
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Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 05:31 PM
Response to Original message
6. Not really. I haven't seen any real effect. If there were
they would change their way of doing business. I don't have an answer as to how to get their attention either.
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Shagbark Hickory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 05:31 PM
Response to Original message
7. I don't believe they are. And I don't shop at walmart either but it's primarily because
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 05:32 PM by Shagbark Hickory
it's inconvenient. So much walking involved. I could never understand how walmart shoppers are so incredibly obese when you have to walk a mile just to get in the store. Then another 5-10 miles to get what you need and get out.

Not enough people know about this whole georgia pacific thing to make a dent.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 05:40 PM
Response to Original message
8. Yes, they do. I participated in a boycott
when Kerry was running for president against a media org who were planning to air an anti-Kerry 'documentary' which was filled with lies. The owner was arrogant, laughed at the idea, and said they would not be bullied into not airing the movie.

So, thousands of people wrote to their sponsors etc. and within a week their stocks began to fall and to make a long story short, they had to compromise on the movie airc. Not sure if their stocks rebounded later, but the boycott definitely worked. It was great to see the arrogant moron have to eat his words. Which btw they will do but ONLY when money is involved.
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iamtechus Donating Member (868 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:13 PM
Response to Original message
9. A successful boycott: The Coors beer boycott started in the 60s
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 06:17 PM by iamtechus
Back in the day (60s), there was a very successful boycott of Coors Beer. It had both political and racial backing and their products became very uncool. Even if one didn't sympathize with its backers it was known to be unwise (maybe even dangerous!) to order a Coors beer in public, at least in Colorado. The following is from Yahoo Answers:
Coors anti-union reputation stems from a long, contentious relationship with labor at the brewery. The troubles were largely driven by strong personalities in the company and in the union. The boycott actually started with the unions support, inspired by Cesar Chavezs lettuce boycott, and was a powerful tool in bringing Coors to the table. When concessions were made by the company, the boycott lost much of its official backing...but some people apparently never got the word.

Coors was charged with racial discrimination against Hispanics in 1969 and forced to pay back salaries. Hispanics joined the union boycott. However, in similar fashion to their "getting it" with gay employees, Coors has put tons of money into not only hiring Hispanics, but supporting Hispanic causes and the general Hispanic community. Again, despite these efforts, some Hispanics continue the boycott.

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20100425084...


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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:37 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. hubby stopped drinking in 90's cause of sexism. yea hubby. nt
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 06:37 PM by seabeyond
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Curmudgeoness Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:15 PM
Response to Original message
10. Some do, and some don't, but that isn't the point.
At least for me. I have to know that I am not part of the problem if I am aware of it. And there have been successful boycotts in the past. One thing that helps is when people who boycott products or businesses let the business know that they are refusing to buy their products, and tell them why.

For successful boycotts, think of the Montgomery bus boycott and the grape boycott. They can be effective but the most successful boycotts have taken a long long time to produce changes. But that is not my reason for refusing to buy from some companies.

Does it hurt workers? Sometimes it might if it is effective, but that is usually in the short term as long as the company decides that the fight is not worth it.
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Fire1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:20 PM
Response to Original message
11. Successful boycott: Montgomery bus boycott of 1955.
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 06:21 PM by Fire1
A year long coordinated effort. It can be done but people have to be of a similar mind set.
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trof Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:32 PM
Response to Original message
12. Mainly symbolic and a matter of conscience/choice for me.
I'm sure I won't bring the Koch boys to their knees by not wiping my butt with their toilet paper.
Or wiping up sills with their paper towels.
But it makes me feel better.
At least I'm not aiding and abetting and that's a Good Thing.
:-)
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 06:36 PM
Response to Original message
13. no northern. repeat, NO northern, i tell hubby. cheapest damn toilet paper
he brought hime charmen this weekend.

no northern. so happy to reject product cause lousy and owners lousy
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otohara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 07:11 PM
Response to Original message
15. Arizona Has Suffered
many canceled conventions and meetings
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 07:22 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. son getting college recruitment from 3 universities in AZ. hubby says, nope, not going to school in
Edited on Mon Apr-04-11 07:22 PM by seabeyond
AZ. crazy laws. crazy politics.

people say... any attention, good attention. i dont buy it. just for me personally on this thread, i see two companies and a state, bad press and no $.
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panader0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 07:38 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Very true
But did it hurt Brewer? Or just the workers?
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certainot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-04-11 08:00 PM
Response to Original message
18. IMO they can be big fighting RW radio, if done right
not national boycotts, but calling local businesses that advertise on the limbaugh beck hannity stations.

most are just there because their ad agencies put them there, they want to be on the loudest stations, they want to be on the station that does the local sports, and most believe the bullshit that team limbaugh are entertainers (not well coordinated propagandists that sold us into bush, iraq, bank deregulation, etc).

it's easy to listen even a few minutes here and there and get a local phone number and talk directly to owners and managers and ask them WTF? ask them if they agree with the racism, lies, and hate from limbaugh and sons.

these businesses need to be shunned and shamed for advertising anytime on these stations for being part of the ongoing attack on american democracy and teachers and unions and diversity and generally being pro billionaire and anti american.

IMO the stations that rely on that local ad revenue for overhead and local talker's salaries will feel that pressure to offer balance or do something completely different.

and those stations are the backbone of the GOP, their power centers, with huge effect on local and national politics.

and consider that 15 of 16 bball teams in the NCAAs broadcast on limbaugh stations (i only checked those, but i think it's proportional) while he and the other RW blowhards lead the way with anti-science global warming and attacking education funding, grants, liberal professors, etc. ... a concerted effort by students and faculties to get out of limbaugh radio would wreck havoc on their whole messaging machine.
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