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Carly Fiorina Calls Apple's Tim Cook a 'Hypocrite' On Gay Rights 653

HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "David Knowles reports at Bloomberg that former Hewlett-Packard CEO and potential 2016 presidential candidate Carly Fiorina called out Apple CEO Tim Cook as a hypocrite for criticizing Indiana and Arkansas over their Religious Freedom Restoration Acts while at the same time doing business in countries where gay rights are non-existent. "When Tim Cook is upset about all the places that he does business because of the way they treat gays and women, he needs to withdraw from 90% of the markets that he's in, including China and Saudi Arabia," Fiorina said. "But I don't hear him being upset about that."

In similar criticism of Hillary Clinton on the Fox News program Hannity, Fiorina argued that Clinton's advocacy on behalf of women was tarnished by donations made to the Clinton Foundation from foreign governments where women's rights are not on par with those in America. ""I must say as a woman, I find it offensive that Hillary Clinton travels the Silicon Valley, a place where I worked for a long time, and lectures Silicon Valley companies on women's rights in technology, and yet sees nothing wrong with taking money from the Algerian government, which really denies women the most basic human rights. This is called, Sean, hypocrisy." While Hillary Clinton hasn't directly addressed Fiorina's criticisms, her husband has. "You've got to decide, when you do this work, whether it will do more good than harm if someone helps you from another country," former president Bill Clinton said in March. "And I believe we have done a lot more good than harm. And I believe this is a good thing.""
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Carly Fiorina Calls Apple's Tim Cook a 'Hypocrite' On Gay Rights

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  • Saudi Arabia, etc. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The difference between SA and Indiana is that SA makes Apple a shit-ton of money.

    • by Rei ( 128717 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:28AM (#49413241) Homepage

      Well, there's also the fact that it's easier to put pressure on Indiana than on Saudi Arabia.

      It's easy to demand that companies step into the foreign policy realm, and I'm sympathetic to that argument - but as a general rule, a company taking a foreign policy stance has no effect other than simply giving up the market altogether. It's on the domestic side that they have a lot more influence.

      If one wants pressure on countries with these sort of behaviors, it should come from the top: the White House. However, things like womens' and gay rights are usually seen as "interfering in the domestic affairs of other countries", and they're often hesitant to do that., preferring instead fo keep relations friendly to maintain support for issues that they consider of greater geopolitical import, such as containing rogue states, preventing proliferation, stopping terrorist groups, etc. Of course, this opens them up to charges of hypocrisy.

      • by njnnja ( 2833511 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:58AM (#49413405)

        a company taking a foreign policy stance has no effect other than simply giving up the market altogether. It's on the domestic side that they have a lot more influence.

        But if a company believes in a goal so much that they are willing to influence on the domestic side, then shouldn't they also care enough about it to be willing to give up on the foreign market? The fact that they don't makes it seem like it's just another publicity stunt. Not that there is anything wrong with a company doing a publicity stunt, but we shouldn't give them any moral *credit* for doing so.

        • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:09AM (#49413467)

          I think we can believe that the gay man may actually believe in gay rights. He can't do jack shit about SA but give up money as a publicity stunt. He helped get indiana to change the law. He's the ceo because he can tell when something would be without benefit.

          • by Noah Haders ( 3621429 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @01:25PM (#49416125)

            perhaps he holds Indiana to higher standards than he expects from the most despotic countries on the planet?

          • I think we can believe that the gay man may actually believe in gay rights.

            That is not the debate. The debate is what does he believe in more, saving $35 on the manufacture of an iPhone or gay rights. So far saving the $35 seems more important.

            $35 being the estimated increased cost of building an iPhone in the US where gays have rights.

        • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:38AM (#49413599) Journal
          Why would those situations be equivalent?

          Indiana is the low hanging fruit in this case: For US political purposes, politicians that cultivate 'pro-business' images either also cultivate 'values', or tend to work with those who do. Here, the legislature was hoping to throw the 'values' voters a bone by solving a mostly imaginary problem, ideally without any political cost to themselves(except a little extra antipathy from the liberals who weren't going to vote for them anyway).

          That puts Apple(and the assorted other companies that have denounced the move, it's a bit of a list) in a fairly strong position: they can't necessarily stop Indiana from doing something; but they can make it clear that you can't burnish your social-conservative credentials without risking your pro-business credentials. It's a natural 'wedge' issue. If Apple and others say nothing, people who are basically interested in business get to pander to social conservatives for free. If they say something, that won't change the game for politicians whose primary support is social conservative; but it will make the ones who listen to the local chamber of commerce much jumpier about doing this sort of thing.

          Without access to that particular political dynamic, their ability to influence a foreign market is a great deal weaker, if present at all.
          • by Rob Y. ( 110975 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @09:49AM (#49414191)

            Yep. The realities of political influence over Indiana and Saudi Arabia have nothing to do with Fiorina's statement. It's all about the political calculation she's making. And that seems to be "fighting gay rights is a non-starter in America today, but running for office in America as a Republican requires that I fight gay rights. So I'll put out a false equivalency that's transparently stupid (because stupid doesn't matter once you get into the realm of he said, she said) and accuse a business leader of hypocrisy as a cover for my own hypocrisy in supporting a law I don't really believe in - but have to pretend to believe in in order to be a viable candidate".

            Carly, you are toast - not that you didn't start out as toast. Your only role in 2016 (if you have a role at all) is to be able to level catty 'critiques' of Hillary because, y'know, you're a woman too. I'm glad to see you're so eager to sell your soul for such a trivial moment in the spotlight.

          • I wonder if you would feel the same way if anti-union companies around the USA used the same tactic to keep worker wages and rights down.
        • by ranton ( 36917 )

          But if a company believes in a goal so much that they are willing to influence on the domestic side, then shouldn't they also care enough about it to be willing to give up on the foreign market?

          False equivalency much? A company or individual being smart enough to pick battles which can be won is not being hypocritical. Refusing to do work with Saudi Arabia now would accomplish nothing. Perhaps refusing to do business with them 30 years from now if their own internal opinion on gay rights grows enough could do some good. And most likely only companies who continue to do business with them would have that leverage at all.

        • You all are assuming that Tim Cook threatened to stop selling Apple products in Indiana. Obviously he didn't do that, and he wouldn't if he could. The analogy with Saudi Arabia is bad. Tim Cook is not accepting of rights abuses in Saudi Arabia.
      • Spot on. And, taking actions which negatively affect the holdings of a stock owner in a publicly traded company will not go over well. Since foreign corporations operate at the discretion of the local government, attempting to meddle in their internal affairs will likely result in loss of that market. That is certainly not popular with investors.

      • If Google can withdraw from China, a huge market, then other companies do not have an excuse. They are in those countries because they can make money and don't really care what else happens. If Indiana fought back hard against them, they would just run to the federal government and, through the use of political donations and lobbyists, get their way. With a few exceptions, how can anyone defend big companies in this day and age?
      • Not to mention its the classic "and you are lynching negroes" [wikipedia.org] which is a non argument designed to deflect blame, no different than saying "blacks didn't want civil rights because if they REALLY wanted civil rights they would have boycotted the buses in GA,TN,AR, and not just AL. Sounds retarded? Well it is, but what do you expect from a Republican presidential hopeful, they haven't had a truly popular candidate since Ronnie which is why they practically worship him as a deity.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:30AM (#49413261)

      The difference between SA and Indiana is that SA makes Apple a shit-ton of money.

      The difference between SA and Indiana is that Indiana protects religious freedom and despite not providing uniquely gay services, no businesses really discriminate against gays, while Saudi Arabia stones gays to death.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:19AM (#49413213)

    Here is a little reminder for everyone:

    bad + bad != good

    good + bad > bad + bad

    good + good > bad + good

    So if somebody complains about someone promoting good + bad, do not forget that that this is better than bad + bad, although good + good would be even better. Perhaps it's not possible to solve all the problems of the world in one step, and perhaps not everyone who cannot solve all problems of the world in one step is a hypocrite.

    Thank you for your attention!

    • This is also known as the excuse of "the greater good", a concept that should scare libertarians quite a bit...

      In the name of a "Greater Good" many lesser evils may be done.

  • by dmgxmichael ( 1219692 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:22AM (#49413225) Homepage
    ... you're a fool that will quickly find no one can be your supporter.
  • Why does it seem (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:23AM (#49413227)

    All of politics these years are irrelevant social justice spats?

    We have real problems, like the national debt going to be $20T, meaning every man, woman, and child has over $62.5k hangin over their head (household of mother, father, and 2.3 kids = around $270k) and everyone is spatting over who can get married and a bunch of nonissues such as bad thoughts about certain groups.

    It's been long past where most places cared about lifestyle and we're still spazzing about making everyone feel cuddled. Holy fuck.

  • fiorina (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:25AM (#49413229)

    She sure fixed Lucent and HP. Totally incompetent and destructive. In over her head and spouting gibberish is her stock in trade.

  • So... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Simulant ( 528590 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:25AM (#49413231) Journal
    Does this mean that President Fiorina will cut off ties to Saudi Arabia once elected? Didn't think so....
    • Re:So... (Score:5, Informative)

      by JenovaSynthesis ( 528503 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:28AM (#49413243)

      Or not be a Republican? She needs to look at her own party before she ever has the right to complain about someone else being a hypocrite.

    • Re:So... (Score:5, Funny)

      by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:50AM (#49413365) Homepage Journal

      She's going to merge the USA & Canada, keep the worst bits of both and the best bits of neither, then sell the resulting mess to Vanautu for a dollar.

      Hawaii won't be part of the deal; she'll get that as her golden parachute.

      • She's going to merge the USA & Canada, keep the worst bits of both and the best bits of neither, then sell the resulting mess to Vanautu for a dollar.

        Hawaii won't be part of the deal; she'll get that as her golden parachute.

        IF this isn't +5 funny, please fix.

    • by Shoten ( 260439 )

      Does this mean that President Fiorina will cut off ties to Saudi Arabia once elected? Didn't think so....

      No, no, no...you see, she's not criticizing Tim or Hilary for their stances. She's criticizing them for doing business with people that don't share their stances.

      Fiorina, on the other hand, hates both fags and women. Hence, she's not a hypocrite herself for being FROM Silicon Valley or having done just as much business with China. So it's all good!

  • One one hand I agree with her sentiments. But her view needs to expand beyond attacking a couple of people. IMHO the US has a bizarre relationship with the Saudis, who seem to be able to get away with a shitload of things that other countries in the middle east get beat down for. But I cannot explain why the US turns a blind eye to it all, except possibly in the name of oil.

    On the other hand, she said all of this on Hannity, and he is not known to be the bastion of logic (or even at times coherent though

    • by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:44AM (#49413339)

      One one hand I agree with her sentiments.

      You agree with pandering? You think that Cook should support bigoted laws? You think that a corporate CEO shouldn't speak out against a law that is plainly discriminatory in his own country? You think that Apple should stop doing business any place that has a law that the CEO personally disagrees with? You think that HP ever changed where they did business based on Fiorina's personal moral compass? What exactly in her sentiments do you think is anything positive?

      On the other hand, she said all of this on Hannity, and he is not known to be the bastion of logic

      She's pandering to the conservative base of her party because she hopes to run for office. Hannity is a great place for conservatives to do that. Logic has nothing to do with his show and never did.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        You think that Cook should support bigoted laws? You think that a corporate CEO shouldn't speak out against a law that is plainly discriminatory in his own country? You think that Apple should stop doing business any place that has a law that the CEO personally disagrees with?

        So, he should oppose laws that harm gays in minor ways, but not worry so much about the laws that hurt them in major ways? Because if the Indiana thing is an indication of how much he opposes laws that harm gays in minor ways, then w

        • by itzly ( 3699663 )

          then why isn't he upset by Saudi (or most of Africa, for that matter) laws that harm gays in major ways

          How do you know he is not upset ? I'm guessing he is upset, but probably figures he has no power to change it.

        • (I'd think imprisonment or death is a bigger problem than where to get your wedding cake made, but that may just be me)?

          You obviously underestimate the importance of wedding cakes to gay couples getting married....

        • by frank_adrian314159 ( 469671 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:49AM (#49413679) Homepage

          As human beings, we have limited agency. Tim Cook's words hold great sway here in the US. Much less in a place like Saudi Arabia.

          Why do you want him to waste his political capital in fruitless words about the House of Saud and their backwards religion when he can affect change here and now? Why are Republicans all about doing ineffective things? I guess Sean had an expert in that when he brought in Fiorina as a guest!

      • by OzPeter ( 195038 )

        You agree with pandering?

        I said no such thing, and you are deliberately mis-representing my position for your own benefit - as can be seen by your ignoring the anything past the first sentence in my first paragraph. However I will concede that perhaps I should have prepended my statement with "in general".

        So why have you ignored my US/Saudi comment? Do you think that the US should be a country of "do as I say and not as I do' in the international realm? Do you salivate at the application of the monroe doctrine? Do you support t

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:31AM (#49413269)

    Is this for real? Is she implying that Cook should have ruined 90% of Apple's business because of his personal stance on gay rights? I dislike Apple as much as anyone can, but this is utter bullshit.

    • Of course she is. She's going to take the stance that makes people harp on the flaws that aren't in line with their values.

      If it causes division within the opposing party, more's the better.

  • This is ridiculous (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Headw1nd ( 829599 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:35AM (#49413291)
    While I am not entirely sure about how discriminatory the Indiana law is ( I have heard convincing arguments on both sides) the idea that Tim Cook should use the same logic when addressing an issue of rights in the US (a democratic country of which he is a citizen) as in Saudi Arabia (a monarchy with heavy religious influence, to which he is a foreigner) is absolutely ludicrous. If anything, it only says he should be more proactive about issues in the US, since it sets an example, good or bad, for the rest of the world, and it is more within his sphere of influence. This also seems to be trotting about hand in hand with the idea that Apple is somehow boycotting Indiana, which is itself a bizarre falsehood.
    • While I am not entirely sure about how discriminatory the Indiana law is

      I think it is clearly an attempt to allow people to act in bigoted ways against unprotected minority groups under the aegis of protecting their "religious" rights. It allows religious people to impose their religious morals on others while limiting the government's ability to protect others from those impositions. Personally I think it is a gross violation of separation of church and state cleverly disguised to appear to support that very same principle. It seems most targeted at LGBT individuals but I h

    • Nuance is a pesky thing, ain't it?

  • by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:35AM (#49413297)

    Carly Fiorina called out Apple CEO Tim Cook as a hypocrite for criticizing Indiana and Arkansas over their Religious Freedom Restoration Acts while at the same time doing business in countries where gay rights are non-existent.

    First off, since Fiorina has run a large multinational, she know damn well that the CEO's personal morality on an issue matters very little regarding where the company does businesses. This is just pandering to conservatives by someone who hopes to run for office. Did HP stop doing business in China because of Fiorina's personal sense of morality? Didn't think so.

    Last time I checked, Tim Cook was a US citizen so it hardly seems inappropriate to hold your own country to a higher standard than places where you don't actually get a vote. Furthermore it's a little hard to criticize a foreign country for something that your own country is doing. Fix your home first and then you can hold the moral high ground. These "religious freedom" laws are nothing more than attempts to codify bigotry and circumvent parts of the constitution.

    I find it offensive that Hillary Clinton travels the Silicon Valley, a place where I worked for a long time, and lectures Silicon Valley companies on women's rights in technology, and yet sees nothing wrong with taking money from the Algerian government, which really denies women the most basic human rights.

    Aaaannnd now we get to what is really going on. Any republican presidential hopeful for the 2016 election is going to engage in a huge amount of Hillary bashing. Anyone who has actually dealt with foreign countries would (or should) know that progress in human rights sometimes comes in slow, painful, incremental steps. Someone who has been Secretary of State would know this well. The US had slavery and jim crow laws and huge civil rights abuses for most of its history. Problems we are still dealing with today. Anyone who thinks the US is in a position to lecture on human rights hasn't read a history book lately. Fiorina knows or ought to know this so she's just pandering to idiots who lack the ability to grasp nuance. Sad thing is that it works.

    • by guises ( 2423402 )
      Yeah, I had a vague idea of who Carly Fiorina was previously. I knew she headed HP for a while (with much associated hate around here) and I knew that she was potentially running for office next year, though I didn't know under which party. The summary though is just a long way of saying, "Carly Fiorina has made an announcement: 'I am running for office as a Republican.'"

      I'm sure she'll mention the Affordable Care Act soon enough.
    • by ggendel ( 1061214 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:09AM (#49413463)

      I'm very confused. Wasn't Carla Fiorina an instrument of HP's down-slide with her involvement in the "Pre-texting" scandal where she hired private investigators to spy on the other board members? How soon we forget. It was a similar situation with RCA's board near it's end that pushed the decision to sell to GE.

    • First, let me be clear that I'm not disputing that she's merely strewing birdseed for the conservative election pigeons. Of COURSE she is doing that. However, your response is full of logical inconsistencies:

      the CEO's personal morality on an issue matters very little regarding where the company does businesses

      Did you have the same response when he was righteously sermonizing on how the people of Indiana and Arkansas choose to run their lives? It seems that his personal morality matters very MUCH on where

      • Yet in the US social progress needs to come IMMEDIATELY, as soon as someone stamps their precious little foot?

        If it's actually PROGRESS, why wait? Because another minority (hardcore religious Christians) stamps their feet? Amazing how that works...

  • by Registered Coward v2 ( 447531 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:37AM (#49413305)
    will she explain why off-shoring is good and will her stand on immigration be to open the door sand expand opportunities for people to come here? If not, will she accept that she is a hypocrite for arguing those positions forcefully when she was a CEO and now backs away form them when they become a political liability? As for her entering the presidential race, I'm sure many republicans are happy because she can attack Hillary and they need just to set back and watch without having to take positions they may later regret. Let her take the early fire and when she is done they have an easier path to capture the hill.
  • Partisan Bullshit (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tbannist ( 230135 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:43AM (#49413335)

    This is all about Fiorina positioning herself for her bid for the Republican presidential candidacy, however, her comments are pure bullshit. You can't require a trillion dollar multi-national company stop doing business in every jurisdiction that has laws or policies the CEO disagrees with and It's not hypocrisy to use your free speech rights to advocate against policies that are abhorrent to you. It's also not hypocrisy to allow people from countries that have policies you're fighting against to give money to your charitable organization. However, Fiorina is holding other people to standards to she would never hold herself to, and that is hypocrisy. Of course, Fox News not only airs this bullshit but airs it uncritically and that's one of the reasons so many people despise Fox News. The only reason this is news is that she is making a bid for the presidency, otherwise this would another be "washed-up has-been says stupid things" story on page 27.

    Frankly, I expect better from Fox News and I expect better from someone who wants to be president than moronic reactionary criticism.

    • Well, it's not like you can expect Carly Fiorina to know how to run a massive multi-national company in anything but the most superficial sense ... because she was pretty much incompetent.

      What she is doing is speaking to her own perceived base who feel it should be a religious right to discriminate. And in that group, someone who will defend their right to be assholes is someone to listen to.

      But, sometimes Republicans have a difficult time understanding the actual meaning of "hypocrisy", because they're am

    • You can't require a trillion dollar multi-national company stop doing business in every jurisdiction that has laws or policies the CEO disagrees with and It's not hypocrisy to use your free speech rights to advocate against policies that are abhorrent to you.

      What is worse? Someone refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding, or cutting someone's head off because they are gay?

      Of course, the former wasn't happening in the first place. It was a drummed up story by the left. But don't let actual facts get in the way.

      • What is worse? Someone refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding, or cutting someone's head off because they are gay?

        The latter, of course, but you are engaging in the same bullshit as Fiorina. Has it ever occurred in your sorry excuse for a brain that Tim Cook might oppose both activities? When will you navel-gazing idiots learn that "somebody else did something worse" is never a good reason for tolerating injustice?

        Of course, the former wasn't happening in the first place. It was a drummed up story by the left. But don't let actual facts get in the way.

        Then why pass a law to enable anti-gay people to break contracts with gay people? It certainly wasn't "the left" that passed the law. Get a clue before you spout your ignorant nonsense.

  • by jcr ( 53032 ) <jcr&mac,com> on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:46AM (#49413347) Journal

    Tim stated his objection to an act of the Indiana legislature. He did not say that Apple's going to refuse to do business in that state.

    -jcr

  • Other people have already repeated this talking point ad nauseum, so I guess I'm not surprised to read that Carly repeated this flawed strawman. However, her calling someone a hypocrite is a bit hilarious - not as much as the demon sheep ad, but almost. Cenk Uygur discusses and demolishes the GOP's penchant for this sort of thing here: Sean Hannity Thinks Outrage At Anti-Gay Law Should Be Redirected: https://youtu.be/B7IJ5MbRN2k [youtu.be]
  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @07:52AM (#49413377)
    ... expect her to say provocative things just for the sake of drawing attention to herself. Why else would someone go on Fox News?
  • All of the Tea Bagger claims that she made are true. My bitch hired the best private investigators to find these facts out.
  • Conflicted (Score:4, Interesting)

    by dskoll ( 99328 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:35AM (#49413573) Homepage

    I can see this both ways. On the one hand, Fiorina is right. Saudi Arabia, China, etc. have despicable human rights records and roundly deserve criticism and boycotts.

    On the other hand, Apple is a US-based company and is much more likely to have influence in the US than elsewhere. We should recognize that we need to fight injustice everywhere, but just because we aren't able to effectively fight it in China that doesn't mean we should throw up our hands and ignore it in the US.

    What Apple et. al. really should do is ensure that their employees in China are as well-treated on the job as American workers. Not to do that would be utterly hypocritical.

  • Good point (Score:2, Funny)

    by AndyKron ( 937105 )
    Good point. Like always. FUCK APPLE!
  • by frank_adrian314159 ( 469671 ) on Monday April 06, 2015 @08:39AM (#49413607) Homepage

    Everyone in the tech world knows Fiorina's an idiot. I guess now the California Republican Party can find it out, too. Lucky them!

    But I don't know why I'm complaining. She makes Hillary look great! The more clowns the R's pack into their car, the more their makeup rubs onto the ringmasters who are trying to drive. Fun times...

  • Giving them money would be hypocrisy. Taking their money, that's something else.

    On the other hand, manufacturing in China, that's hypocritical.

  • what Carly Fiorina thinks about.. anything?

    I didn't even care what she thought when she was a tech CEO -- despite the fact I use a lot of HP systems.

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