Delta loses tax break over NRA, REI hops onto virtue-signaling train over guns

Delta loses tax break over NRA, REI hops onto virtue-signaling train over guns

Delta loses tax break over NRA, REI hops onto virtue-signaling train over guns

These boycotts are so cute. I guess that’s why REI now wants to join Delta and others in making a show of putting pressure on the NRA and gun manufacturers. REI is the latest grand-stander to virtue-aly exert pressure on companies it deals with that sell guns or have ties to other companies that sell guns. 

This week, while many large corporations virtue-signaled their way into the news cycle, an unusual thing happened. Somebody slapped back. The state of Georgia dumped a tax break for jet fuel that would have saved Delta upwards of $40 million dollars.

It was reported by USA Today that a total of 13 people had ever used the previously available NRA discount on Delta. So basically Delta’s showy Look at How Woke We Are public relations gamble has cost them about $3 million dollars per discount they will no longer provide for NRA members. Was it worth it Delta? Apparently so:

“While Delta’s intent was to remain neutral, some elected officials in Georgia tied our decision to a pending jet fuel tax exemption, threatening to eliminate it unless we reversed course,” Bastian wrote. “Our decision was not made for economic gain and our values are not for sale.”

More from Delta:

“This decision followed the NRA’s controversial statements after the recent school shootings in Florida. Our discounted travel benefit for NRA members could be seen as Delta implicitly endorsing the NRA. That is not the case.”

“Our objective in removing any implied affiliation with the NRA was to remove Delta from this debate,” Bastian said.

So brave, now saying they are just trying to remain neutral, and backing it up with a contradictory statement that they are doing it for their values. Well which is it?

REI has jumped onto the virtue-signalling locomotive too:

“REI does not sell guns. We believe that it is the job of companies that manufacture and sell guns and ammunition to work towards common sense solutions that prevent the type of violence that happened in Florida last month. In the last few days, we’ve seen such action from companies like Dick’s Sporting Goods and Walmart and we applaud their leadership…This morning we learned that Vista does not plan to make a public statement that outlines a clear plan of action. As a result, we have decided to place a hold on future orders of products that Vista sells through REI while we assess how Vista proceeds.Companies are showing they can contribute if they are willing to lead. We encourage Vista to do just that.”


Vista Outdoor, a company with many gun and ammo brands in its portfolio, also owns outdoor brands CamelBak, Bell, Bollé, Camp Chef, Jimmy Styks SUPs and Blackburn.

At least REI isn’t trying to have it both ways like Delta. (If I hadn’t already decided I wasn’t doing business with REI, this would have made me dump them. My reason? Economical. I ordered, but returned a back pack. They don’t have free returns – which I didn’t realize when I ordered and ended up paying 2/3 the retail cost of the back pack in order to return it. With Amazon Prime, that shizz is free. And yes, I did #buycott Amazon today in order to blunt nitwit Alyssa Milano’s Twitter activism, though I doubt anyone took that very seriously. Amazon is too pervasive in our lives!).

The Georgia legislature’s action in removing a tax benefit that will affect Delta’s business feels a little creepy at first. Isn’t that government exerting an unfair power against a private company, and should conservatives be a little worried about that? Hmmm, perhaps, but the tax break might have been crony capitalism to start with, and isn’t Delta, and others, wielding their power in a discriminatory way – against people simply asserting their constitutional rights? Why should a supporter of any amendment be targeted for supporting the Constitution?

CamelBak has responded to REI’s rash action:

CamelBak on Thursday finally addressed the debate in its own statement. The company, bought by Vista for $412.5 million in July 2015, said the boycott centers on an incorrect assumption that the purchase of products supports the shooting sports.

“That is not the case,” the company wrote. “Our brand falls within the Outdoor Products segment of our company, which operates separately from Vista Outdoor’s Shooting Sports segment. Since 1989, CamelBak has been committed to forever changing the way people hydrate and perform. Our passion and love for the outdoors is unchanged. We are deeply committed to the individuals and communities we serve and we proudly partner with organizations to promote the enjoyment of the outdoors.”

But this is all beside the point. The groups putting pressure on REI and others don’t so much care as whether companies like CamelBak or REI actually sell guns, they care about moving the “Ally” needle toward their cause.

David Hines explains in this tweet thread how coordinated this effort at boycotting and putting pressure on corporations is. Click through to see the progression, planning, and execution – they have this in place and wait for the exact right moment to spring the plan. Like a mass shooting or something. The Spectrum of Allies wheel above seeks to move each section over one slot, so that’s why gun manufacturers or the NRA might not be primary targets, at first. The aim is to reduce their support through attacking outlying constituencies of various levels of support or neutrality.

The Right, who like to mind their own business for the most part, and just want people to stay out of theirs, rarely have this level of organization to fight back, and certainly aren’t ready at a moment’s notice. The Right frequently lets a crisis go to waste. But it’s just not in our DNA to be so callous. Despite this, the Right needs to get woke in their own way – we cannot expect that others will do unto us as we would do unto them, as has been proven time and time again. We need to be organized and activated, mostly to be able to react much more quickly to these mob actions.

The Georgia legislature did the right thing. If a private company is discriminating against patrons for supporting a Constitutional right, then it needs to feel the effect of that unfair action. In Delta’s case, I would say $40 million might be a pretty sharp sting.

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  • CaptDMO says:

    Why was Delta deemed to merit an exemption from fuel taxes in the FIRST place

  • sestamibi says:

    The measure passed the Georgia Senate 44-10 and the House 135-24. These lopsided margins suggest that a number of Democrats were on board for this as well. I suspect that many of them already had an axe to grid with Delta, perhaps regarding other issues, and this vote just gave them cover to put the screws to Delta without suffering any political damage.

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