AWKWARD: Wall Street Journal Exposes Corporate Doublespeak on Olympics

February 8th, 2022 12:03 PM

The Wall Street Journal called out American companies for sponsoring the Olympics in a country the U.S. has accused of genocide.

In an article headlined “Why the Beijing Olympics Are Awkward for Corporate Do-Gooders,” The Wall Street Journal’s (The Journal) Asia Editor, Nathaniel Taplin, confronted the double-dealing of big businesses in the U.S. that preach wokeness at home yet still agreed to sponsor the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing despite China’s continuing genocide against the Uyghurs. Taplin remarked, “China was just too big of a business opportunity to ignore” for woke corporations in the U.S. 

Taplin began, “The good intentions of corporations are on a collision course with China.” “Good intentions” was a more than generous interpretation. A graph depicting “American Olympics partners’ estimated revenue exposure to mainland China” was telling. Massive profit margins, not “good intentions,” seem a much likelier explanation for why U.S. companies like Intel, VISA, Coca-Cola, Procter & Gamble and Airbnb, chose to sponsor the Beijing Games. Intel alone expects more than 25% of their revenue from business in China, according to The Journal graph. 

Taplin also pointed out the blatant hypocrisy of the U.S. “sponsors” of the Beijing Games in a China that “is becoming more repressive, not less.” These U.S. sponsors “include active proponents of political rights at home and model corporate citizens, according to environmental, social and governance rating agencies.”

In other words, woke businesses like Coca-Cola and Airbnb chose to sponsor the Olympics in a country that the Biden administration announced is committing “genocide” against Uyghur Muslims. Coca-Cola Chairman and CEO James Quincey went so far as to release a video statement headlined, “Where We Stand on Social Justice.” He claimed that “diversity and inclusion are among our greatest strengths.” Does Coca-Cola’s “inclusion” exclude the Uyghurs?

Taplin then asked, “What were they (U.S. sponsors of the Olympics) thinking?” 

“Probably that it was business-as-usual,” was his response. “Most multinationals, their investors, their corporate social responsibility departments, and even the ESG companies rating them grew up in a world with a certain set of convenient assumptions about China: fast-growing and politically intolerant, but with a political culture and institutions that would become more like the democratic West as it grew wealthier.”

While that theory of economic freedom through trade has been dominant for years, it appears to have been weakened by the political reality of modern China. Numerous athletes have criticized China’s draconian COVID-19 policies at the Olympics, and a Belgian skeleton racer recently posted a video from COVID-19 isolation in China in tears.

Intel Executive Vice President and General Counsel Steven Rodgers made headlines when he "agreed with Washington's assessment that Beijing was committing genocide in Xinjiang," according to The Journal. The blowback was brutal. Chinese citizens savaged Intel on social media and The Global Times — Chinese state-run media — also attacked Intel. Embarrassingly, Intel reportedly “apologized, saying it wrote the letter to comply with U.S. law, and that it didn't represent its stance on Xinjiang,” according to The Journal

Conservatives are under attack. Contact ABC News (818) 460-7477, CBS News (212) 975-3247 and NBC News (212) 664-6192, and demand they report on corporate America’s hypocrisy supporting so-called social justice in the U.S. while doing business with genocidal communist China.