Among the many instances of regrettable corporate behavior in the 20th century, the collaboration of the Ford Motor Company, under the direction of its antisemitic leader Henry Ford, with Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany is one of the worst. Ford helped the Nazis spread propaganda and built vehicles for the Third Reich well into World War II.
One would hope that the executives at the Ford Motor Company would have learned from this historic mistake, and be eager to repudiate any connection to Nazi ideology. It would seem like a public relations nightmare for Ford to embrace the hatred that fueled the Nazis once again.
Unfortunately, the people at Ford don’t seem to see things that way. Ford now has itself entangled in the support of Nazi ideology all over again, only this time, it’s homegrown hate that has spread Nazism across the United States.
Breitbart is a web site that began creating doctored videos designed to deceive people into believing in wild conspiracy theories. When Steve Bannon took over Breitbart, he took the approach of creating fake news and turned it to the reconstruction of white supremacist groups in the USA. Bannon explained that Breitbart would be a “platform for the alt-right”.
The “alt-right” is a term used to describe right wing extremists who believe that the federal government should use its power to elevate European-Americans to the top of American social hierarchy. Alt-right members believe that Europeans are genetically superior to everyone else, and that men are naturally superior to women. They urge the aggressive use of military power and authoritarian tactics to impose their beliefs on everyone else. They paint swastikas, shout “Sieg heil!” and raise their arms in stiff-armed Nazi salutes.
“Alt-right” is nothing more than a synonym for Nazi. Breitbart, as the platform for the spread of alt-right ideas, is the propaganda wing of the Nazis in America.
Seeing such flagrant display of Nazi identity from Breitbart, reasonable leadership at the Ford Motor Company would steer clear of any connection with the publication. That’s not what we’re seeing, however. Ford is a financial supporter of Breitbart, providing Breitbart Nazis with the money they need by placing advertising on the site.
Apparently, Ford believes that American Nazis are a profitable target demographic. Perhaps, in the short term, there is some money to be made for Ford by kowtowing to Breitbart and Steve Bannon. Bannon has been appointed by Donald Trump, after all, as the top White House political adviser.
What kind of person, though, would be willing to turn a profit as such a moral cost? A popular movement calling itself Sleeping Giants is asking the Ford Motor Company to withdraw advertising revenue from Breitbart. So far, Ford has refused to respond.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Reasonable people in business understand that a bullying, racist government won’t be able to provide a stable economy, and will introduce violent chaos into society. A movement of ethical business owners against Trump is forming to reject the corrupt, totalitarian ideology of Donald Trump, Steve Bannon, and the Breitbart Nazis that elevated them into power.