This morning, I was greeted with an email
from Working Assets, my progressive-minded wireless and long
distance carrier, entitled "plastic with a purpose".
Working Assets was offering me a credit
card. A MBNA credit card. Just what purpose are we
talking about here?
I'm appaled to see a so-called progressive
company doing business with MBNA corp, a company that supports a
variety of dubious neo-conservative causes, and was the top
contributer to the Bush campaign in 2000.
Between 1989 and 2002, MBNA has donated
,139,894 to the Republican Party. In 2000, MBNA donated
,565,205 to various 'causes', with the majority of this
spending spree going to George W. Bush's Presidential bid. They
donate these large amounts by the highly questionable practice of
"suggesting" that all their executives make donations.
These "suggestions" come in the form of Internal Memos
which tell executives how much they should donate to each
"preferred" candidate, and asking that they send
photocopies of the checks to top executive John W. Scheflen. CEO
Charles M. Cawley is one of Dubya's "Pioneers", those
0,000 and up fundraisin' cowboys. Yee-haw.
By the way, Cawley, Scheflen & other
execs at MBNA have just sold massive amounts of their MBNA stock
- they know something we don't?
Why would Working Assets choose to do
business with such a company? Why not CitiGroup, which makes
roughly equal donations, or Providian, who hardly donates at all?
There are lots of lesser evils in the world
of corporate banking (not to mention credit unions!), and I would
expect a company like Working Assets to do its homework. Campaign
finance data is open to the public, people!
After an extended stay in the UK, I have
just returned home. I was planning to re-activate both my long
distance and wireless services, but after receiving this credit
card offer, I am dubious about where my money would really be
going. I'm thinking, great, I'll donate 10 cents to Human Rights
Watch for every 00 in interest I pay to MNBA.
Now that's plastic with a purpose. It's
just not my kind of purpose.
The Center for Responsive Politics
The Delaware News Journal
"MBNA's campaign clout grows" 03/12/2000
MSN Money: MBNA