Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dear Geico, thanks for telling me what you think of your Conservative clients...


Mr. Tony Nicely Chairman, President & CEO, Insurance Operations E-mail: 301-986-2462

Chris Tasher, GEICO Media Relations 301-986-3271 E-mail:

Greetings Tony and Chris:

As a loyal GEICO customer of 11 years, I am writing to express my displeasure with corporate decisions made in regard to pulling GEICO ads from the Glenn Beck show on Fox News Channel. I’d like to make it known that I’ve been very happy with GEICO throughout the course of our relationship but, as a person of principle, I regret to inform you that I have chosen to take my business elsewhere. GEICO needs to understand that the conservative and moderate voices in this country far outweigh those on the left end of the political spectrum. The only recourse I have in emphasizing my displeasure with these decisions is to redirect my spending toward companies that truly respect diversity of opinion from all sides in this country.

I have done my homework on this issue and understand the following:

The political organization “Color of Change” is the impetus behind the movement to withdraw advertising from Mr. Beck’s show. One of the founding members of “Color of Change” is civil rights attorney Van Jones who, in March 2009, was appointed to a role in President Obama’s administration as the Special Advisor on Green Jobs, often described as the “green-jobs czar.” Van Jones is a convicted felon as a result of his arrest during the Rodney King riots and a self-proclaimed communist. In 2005, he stated, “I spent the next ten years of my life working with a lot of those people I met in jail, trying to be a revolutionary…I was a rowdy nationalist on April 28th, and then the verdicts came down on April 29th,” he said. “By August, I was a communist.”

“Color of Change” co-founder James Rucker has been very clear about his stated goal – to literally silence Glenn Beck’s voice. The exact quote is, “anyone who uses such a platform to spew such vitriol, whether Glenn Beck or anyone else, has no place on the air, and we at Color Of Change could use every resource available to us to remove corporate sponsorship from their platform."

Considering these facts, I am inclined to believe that the efforts by “Color of Change” are a direct assault against conservative free speech in America. They apparently have a history of lobbying directly against conservative causes. In this past election cycle, they petitioned the Congressional Black Caucus to refrain from hosting a Democratic presidential debate co-sponsored by Fox claiming “it consistently marginalizes…black leaders and the black community.” It is clear they are biased against Fox News. At the same time the political left is demonizing town hall protesters, the organization remains silent regarding many similar injustices taking place at this very time. Left-leaning radio talk show hosts like Mike Malloy are saying abhorrent things about Glenn Beck (hoping he will commit suicide on live TV, etc.) and Rush Limbaugh (hoping he will choke on his own fat). I don’t see them lobbying against those advertising on these types of shows. In Rucker’s own words, “anyone who uses such a platform to spew such vitriol, whether Glenn Beck or anyone else, has no place on the air.” It is clear that this statement only applies to conservatives attacking their sacred cows. Just to emphasize my point, where was their righteous indignation when President Bush was being labeled a Nazi or a racist post-Hurricane Katrina? It is clear they are only interested in quelling conservative speech that is offensive to their sensibilities.

I appreciate the fact that you have not removed your advertising from Fox News as a whole. I understand that the advertising revenue has simply been diverted from the Glenn Beck show. But, from my perspective, this undermines the basic tenants of free speech. Granted, the comment Glenn Beck made was controversial and possibly unwise. But if you are withdrawing your ads from Glenn Beck, you should also be withdrawing ads from MSNBC altogether. That network is bereft with hate speech against conservatives. I will keep abreast of this situation and, at some point in the future if I read that GEICO has reconsidered their position on this matter, I will potentially reinstate my account.

Thanks for your time and attention to this note.