Tesla’s Latest Debacle Shatters Conservative Myth of “Get Woke, Go Broke”
October 16, 2021 (2mo ago)

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There are a few paths to intergenerational wealth in America. You could build a business from the ground up, spend decades battling to the top of a major corporate hierarchy, or train for years on end to become a world-class talent in music, sports, or entertainment.

Or, you could just point a finger and scream about racism.

That’s the lesson demonstrated this week by Owen Diaz, now a member of America’s plutocrat class because he says somebody called him a mean word a few years ago.

Tesla has been ordered by a federal court in California to pay almost $137m in damages to a Black former employee who said he endured racial abuse while working at a factory in Fremont.

Owen Diaz, a former contracted elevator operator who worked at the plant between 2015 and 2016, alleged he was harassed and faced “daily racial epithets” including the “N-word”. He also said employees drew swastikas and left racist graffiti and drawings around the plant.

On Monday, a jury in San Francisco sided with Diaz, who was awarded $6.9m in damages for emotional distress and $130m in punitive damages, according to Diaz’s attorney, Lawrence A Organ.

“It took four long years to get to this point,” Diaz told the New York Times. “It’s like a big weight has been pulled off my shoulders.”

Organ, of the California Civil Rights Law Group, said: “It’s a great thing when one of the richest corporations in America has to have a reckoning of the abhorrent conditions at its factory for Black people.”

Diaz’s lawsuit claimed that supervisors failed to stop the racial abuse.

“Tesla’s progressive image was a façade papering over its regressive, demeaning treatment of African American employees,” the lawsuit stated. [The Guardian]

The case is a fitting encapsulation of America’s ever-more-debilitating obsession with fighting “racism” in every facet of life. It is unclear if any strong evidence even exists to corroborate Diaz’s claims. But even if everything Diaz claimed was entirely true, there is no rational calculus that would suggest the harm against him justified a $137 million verdict. A jury almost certainly would have awarded Diaz far less had he suffered a workplace accident leaving him a quadriplegic.

Tesla at least bothered to push back against Diaz’s allegations, but still delivered a somewhat nauseating “woke” statement about how they “should be held accountable.”

It was not immediately clear if Tesla would appeal but on Monday it issued a statement attempting to downplay the case.

“While we strongly believe that these facts don’t justify the verdict reached by the jury in San Francisco, we do recognize that in 2015 and 2016 we were not perfect. We’re still not perfect,” wrote Valerie Capers Workman, Tesla’s human resources vice-president.

“But we have come a long way from five years ago. We continue to grow and improve in how we address employee concerns. Occasionally, we’ll get it wrong, and when that happens we should be held accountable.”

And while the lying press is happy to imply that Diaz labored in a club run by cruel white supremacists, the reality is that the people heaping “racial abuse” on Diaz weren’t even white.

Not only that, but arguably Tesla shouldn’t have even been involved in the first place. Diaz did not work for Tesla, and neither did the workers “abusing” him. All of them instead worked for contractors and temporary staffing agencies that simply assigned them to Tesla’s plant in Fremont.

It’s easy to see this as just the next outrageous example of America’s woke hysteria—and it certainly does provide an instructive example. But there is a much deeper and more important lesson to be learned from this sordid affair. This latest debacle at Tesla shows that the popular conservative slogan “Get Woke, Go Broke” is a dangerously misguided myth.

To be sure, it is a myth that has some basis in common sense. After all, America’s woke obsession is so excessive, so crazy, and so utterly divorced from reality that wokeness simply can’t be compatible with optimizing efficiency and excellence. It would seem to follow that companies that prioritize “wokeness” over excellence would produce inferior products and suffer in the market and ultimately “go broke.” After all, that’s how the market works, right?

Well, sort of. It is true that America’s woke insanity is fundamentally divorced from reality, and it is certainly the case that when businesses prioritize wokeness they do so at the expense of efficiency and operational excellence. This would be the only and decisive factor if there were a truly free marketplace, and producing the best product for the cheapest price was the only relevant factor for success.

The reality, however, is that the market economy exists within a larger ecology that includes an adversarial legal structure, mobilized political pressure groups, and a hostile media, among other things. This much is obvious. What is not obvious, however, is how this larger ecology operates in such a way as to make it impossible for a business to succeed, especially at the highest level, without bending the knee to the American Regime’s woke ideology.

Perhaps the more accurate corollary is actually “Get Woke or Go Broke.”

The recent judgment against Tesla is not an isolated case. To the contrary, it belongs to a long line of legal rulings that underscore the profound, existential downside risk looms over any corporation that fails to enthusiastically join the chorus of our nation’s woke siren song.

Consider the proposed 2015 merger of Comcast and Time Warner. The biggest barrier to the deal wasn’t the business terms, or the antitrust concerns with allowing two giant rapacious oligarchic corporate interests to join forces. No, the biggest barrier was the fact that they were being sued for $20 billion dollars by the National Association of African-American Owned Media, who argued the merger would create a “disparate impact” on black-owned media enterprises.

Even though the FCC hasn’t yet ruled on the proposed merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, one group has already filed a lawsuit claiming at least $20 billion in damages from the way the two giants allegedly discriminate against black-owned media.

The complaint, filed in California on Friday, comes from the National Association of African-American Owned Media, which also filed a similar suit against AT&T and DirecTV in December.

This time, the plaintiff is not only targeting both Comcast and TWC — on the eve of the two companies merging to become what would be the largest pay television distributor in the United States — but also various African-American advocacy groups and MSNBC host Al Sharpton for allegedly facilitating discrimination.

According to the lawsuit, Comcast and TWC “collectively spend approximately $25 billion annually for the licensing of pay-television channels and advertising of their products and services, yet 100% African American–owned media receives less than $3 million per year.”

At the time of Comcast’s 2010 acquisition of NBCUniversal, Comcast entered into memoranda of understanding with the NAACP, the National Urban League and the National Action Network, but the lawsuit says the voluntary diversity agreements are “a sham, undertaken to whitewash Comcast’s discriminatory business practices.”

Other black channels are said to be “window dressing,” with black celebrities as “fronts” when they are “white-owned businesses” that are run by friends or family of Comcast executives. [Philadelphia Inquirer]

As we can see, there are billions of dollars at stake when it comes to demonstrating fealty to the woke cult of diversity. While some corporations over time have positively embraced “woke ideology,” far more simply do not have a choice.

Take, for instance, the 2004 case of Abercrombie & Fitch, which was sued into oblivion for failing to reflect racial diversity in its marketing strategy. From the New York Times:

Abercrombie & Fitch, one of the nation’s trendiest retailers, settled race and sex discrimination lawsuits yesterday, agreeing to alter its well-known collegiate, all-American — and largely white — image by adding more blacks, Hispanics and Asians to its marketing materials.

After a federal judge in San Francisco approved the class-action settlement yesterday, the two sides announced an agreement that calls for Abercrombie & Fitch to pay $40 million to several thousand minority and female plaintiffs. Abercrombie also agreed to hire 25 diversity recruiters and a vice president for diversity and to pursue benchmarks so that its hiring and promotion of minorities and women reflect its applicant pool.

In an unusual step, the settlement calls for Abercrombie to increase diversity not just in hiring and promotions, but also in its advertisements and catalogs, which have long featured models who were overwhelmingly white and who seemed to have stepped off the football field or out of fraternities or sororities. Plaintiffs’ lawyers said they insisted that the company agree to add more diversity to its marketing materials so as not to discourage minorities from applying for jobs.

In another unusual move, the settlement requires Abercrombie to stop focusing on predominantly white fraternities and sororities in its recruitment. Many Abercrombie workers have said that company employees were often told to go to college campuses and to urge good-looking fraternity and sorority members to apply for jobs. [NY Times]

Abercrombie settled the suit to avoid paying hundreds of millions of dollars in the crapshoot of a jury trial, but this “escape” cost them dearly. Abercrombie was suddenly tens of millions of dollars poorer and shackled to a new ideology of corporatized wokeness more than a decade before that became the national standard.

The results were disastrous. Abercrombie sales fell steadily throughout the late aughts and early 2010s. At one point, sales dropped for 11 straight quarters. When the company finally began to restructure, it closed hundreds of stores. Only a total reboot of the company’s brand and target audience saved it from death.

Such is the downside legal risk of not being woke enough that political commentator Richard Hanania recently argued that wokeness is simply a necessary and predictable outgrowth of civil rights law.

In any case, we see that the “Get Woke, Go Broke” motto couldn’t be further from the truth. Perhaps the surest way for a company to go broke is to fail to proactively display fealty and enthusiastic compliance with the woke regime. “Get Woke or Go Broke,” indeed.

The wokeness regime is not just about negative incentives, however. The economy offers carrots along with sticks when it comes to compliance with wokeness.

From preferential treatment in government contracts, to small business loans, to partnerships offered by mega-corporations like Apple and Google, companies with sufficient minority or female ownership have access to a mountain of perks.

Being able to claim one’s business as minority-owned is such a substantial benefit in the American economy that there is actually an official organization that gets to decide of someone is “black” enough to get special set-aside business perks

As Revolver reported months ago:

To get access to big government contracts and set-asides by major corporate actors, you need to be the right race. So, how is that decided?

For that, you can turn to a little known organization called the National Minority Supplier Development Council. The NMSDC’s goal is to help minority-owned businesses secure more business contracts, through relationships with both government and hundreds of major corporate partners, ranging from Facebook and Google, to Ford and GM, to Walmart and Coca-Cola.

How do you win a spot at NMSDC’s table? By convincing the organization’s officials that you deserve one of its coveted official Race Card™s to play for fun and profit. How does the NMSDC decide if you’re worthy of their coveted Race Card™? Simple: The group defines a minority as “an individual who is at least 25 percent Asian, Black, Hispanic or Native American.” To do that, one literally must submit a driver’s license, a passport, a birth certificate, or the birth certificate of one’s parent or child in order to prove one has the “right” racial group.

READ THE REST: Meet America’s Race Czars: A Shadowy Bureaucracy Deciding Who’s “Black Enough” to Get Government Perks

We could go on for days as to how the tentacles of wokeness animate every aspect of corporate incentive structure. Wokeness does not sit on top of our institutions as a kind of burdensome and misguided lego that can simply be taken off and replaced by a better and more salutary ideology. To the contrary, America’s legal, cultural, and civil society institutions have evolved over the course of decades in such a way as to depend on wokeness for their very functionality. Simply put, wokeness is now integrated into the American economy at the very deepest foundational level.

One cannot succeed at the highest levels of corporate American without paying respects to wokeness any more than corporate leaders in China can succeed without bending their knee to the Chinese communist party. In this respect, wokeness is the closest thing there is to an official ideology of the American regime.

A sober understanding of this reality presents a far more daunting challenge to the American right than the more comfortable fantasies reflected in such slogans as “Get Woke, Go Broke.” However daunting it may be, it is at least a realistic challenge because it accurately reflects the reality we face. The sooner the emerging right digests this reality and adjust to it, the sooner they will be on the road to extricating the woke poison from our body politic once and for all. Perhaps one day, “Get Woke, Go Broke” can actually be made a reality.

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Mr. Flintstone
1 month ago

That weight being pulled off his shoulders is also known as the 8-to-5 grind

1 month ago
Reply to  Mr. Flintstone

Yes he is a hustler

Usu Giri
1 month ago

Simple. They were all in on the scam.

1 month ago

kinda glad they got fined heavily – that’s what you get when hiring cheap help thru temp agencies instead of hiring American workers full time with benefits like health care.

Jack O'Brien
1 month ago

Please identify your writer. This was a well-written piece deserving of recognition

1 month ago

Everyone can whine and reap a huge reward. It’s almost Biblical!

1 month ago

Conservatives continue to fund the people that hate them. As long as that continues we are destined to continue our national and cultural decline.

Stop sending money to Hollywood, Cable TV, pro-sports, etc, or accept the consequences of your financial support of those that hate you, your family and America.

1 month ago

I see suicide in this N’s future

Mark Belk
1 month ago

Freaking /Viggers and $pics. Whatcha gonna do with’em?

Mary Jo Alton
1 month ago

Eye opening article. Amazing how far Al Sharpton has come.

Minnie McGuire
1 month ago

This is more about the racist, liberal c**ts in California than the culture of Tesla or ‘big corporations’.

1 month ago

Get woke, go broke is about boycotting woke corporations, not about inherent business flaws due to wokeness.

1 month ago

They should appeal because Supreme Court precedent is that punitive damages exceeding 4x to 9x actual damages are unconstitutional.

1 month ago

Everybody complains about Swastikas.
Except the Gammadion (it’s proper name) is actually an ancient CHRISTIAN SYMBOL, and is one of the most benign and pure symbols in existence.

IT’s always opposites they use.
The “Star of Rempham” is an EVIL symbol portrayed as good.
The “Swastika” is a GOOD symbol portrayed as evil.

Beware the Ashkenazi Khazars they are DECEIVERS.

Mad Jack
1 month ago

can’t wait for this war to start already… this sh!t ain’t right

Rich Mahogany
1 month ago

It all goes back to the Civil Rights Act, which has basically become America‘s new constitution competing with (and frequently overriding) the old. Christopher Caldwell does a good breakdown of this in “The Age Of Entitlement”.

1 month ago

The award is unconscionably high for damages; including punitive damages. If I had to guess, it will be appealed, the amount will be reduced, and a law firm will skim their “costs” right off the top.

1 month ago

“I was not surprised to discover that the individuals who supposedly were racially hostile to Diaz are apparently POC themselves.”

I’m not surprised either. I live near that factory. Whites are less than 50% of the population in Alameda County. Whites are less than 24% of the population in the City of Fremont where the Tesla plant is located. Chances were really good that perps weren’t White. And let’s not forget, Alameda County’s voter registration is over 60% Democrat (only 10% Republican). I’m willing to bet the perps are all “tolerant” and “diverse” Democrats.

1 month ago

“It’s a great thing when one of the richest corporations in America has to have a reckoning of the abhorrent conditions at its factory for Black people.”

Tesla has a factory for black people? No wonder dude heard “the N-word” all day.

1 month ago

What a discouraging article. Give up trying. Give in to the woke crowd. Not my cup of tea. Sorry I bothered reading it.

1 month ago

It does not shatter it reinforces it. I think this is a ridiculous suit but progressives made this race mess they are going to reap the whirlwind

1 month ago

Asinine settlement. No one should get that much money for something like this if it did happen. If he was so traumatized, why didn’t he quit and work somewhere else? Maybe waiting just long enough to take advantage of his skin color for a huge settlement?

Steve Kinyon
1 month ago

Get Woke Go Broke wasn’t really disproven here. What was proven is you can also go broke for other reasons, especially if you mismanage employees — like using cheap contract labor.

Yo MaMa
1 month ago

Dear God – Please make the Insanity Stop already!

1 month ago

Jackpot Justice…

1 month ago

So all these years with a smartphone in his pocket he never took one picture or record one conversation. Appeal to a court that is more demanding of evidence and witnesses.

1 month ago

Wait, why should he need a phone if they can subpoena security cameras to catch all those GD MF white supremacist painting the graffiti.

1 month ago

> The sooner the emerging right digests this reality and adjust [sic] to it

So … capitulate to it since we are powerless to undo it?

Paul Melonas
1 month ago

I bet the jury in the Diaz v. Tesla case was crew to behold. Probably 1/3 queer. 1/3 trannie and 1/3 homeless junkies.

1 month ago

I would bet the appeal process will be a t the very least 4 years.

Sir Wm
1 month ago

Let’s see…$250,000,000,000 minus $139,000,000 (less than .001 of 1%)…how will Elon ever make it? Please! And the trial occurred in SFO…wouldn’t have been heard anywhere else in America.

Dimitri Ledkovsky
1 month ago

Obviously an elevator man didn’t file this gonzo lawsuit pro se. The real winner is the lawyer or his law firm who probably had an “in.” It wouldn’t surprise if the law firm got 90% of the award. Yet – not a word about this! What was the judge’s share? Oh dear. Not that. Not in a Democracy.

With my fresh subscription to Revolver’s mailing list it feels like a mistake. Their whole odor is that of the woke. Somehow something else was expected.

Andrew Towne
1 month ago

The judge should have set aside the verdict. The plaintiff didn’t even work for Tesla and his supposed persecutors were other “people of color”. Now that the damage is done, the same judge, or an appellate court, should lower the money award by 99.99%.

Of course, this won’t happen.

The silver lining to the cloud is Tesla’s groveling statement about the case. I can’t feel sorry for them.

I don’t buy the “get woke or go broke” argument. The owner of Tesla could retire right now a very rich man. These corporations should make the right choice. The right choice is to shut down and let the government know there will be no more American economy until this nonsense ends. In the meantime, the rest of us should boycott to the greatest extent possible and set up our own parallel economies.

1 month ago

Most of the hidden scandals in corporate America are due to contractors and sub-contractors not being vetted properly. I know this because I’ve personally witnessed it at a Fortune 100 company. There are multiple contractors some of them sub-contract out and the workers are underpaid, overworked, have terrible health benefits and are treated horribly. There is a high turnover rate. Their pool of workers to select from is sparse so they tend to let proper vetting slide. Lots of drug addicts, drunks, perverts and just plain incompetents. They’ve been caught several times doing heinous things. Sexual harassment is the least of it. But hey, according to fuzzy metrics and the bottom line we are saving a boatload of money. In reality the losses in productivity and delays are not being measured.

1 month ago

Someone ’bout to get themselves some new rims!

1 month ago

Black man is teased gets $137 M. A worker with an illegal visa get his leg ribs shattered and almost dies when Tesla attempts to send him back to Slovenia only gets $500K


1 month ago

Only in a bastion of leftism could a jury award someone $130m because he allegedly got his feelings hurt.

Stop The Adversary
1 month ago

Diaz is now black? And he didn’t even work for Tesla, but was a contractor? So, how in the heck does he get to SUE Tesla??

The Sheriff
1 month ago

The winner here is the law firm. How did they find a jury that stupid?

Karen Yaw-McAdoo
1 month ago

Scam artists using their race. Sick. :/

1 month ago

And this ridiculous thing of a case was worthy of having “so called” standing but the 2020 Presidential Election case didn’t qualify for having “standing” really????

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