Saying that “it’s inappropriate to subsidize political activism of a private corporation,” the mighty Florida Gov. Ron “48” DeSantis* vetoed spending $35 million of taxpayer money on a spring training facility for the MLB team the Tampa Bay Rays. DeSantis blocked the public money expenditure after the woke team went on a political messaging rampage in support of legislation that would violate the Second Amendment.
*I usually refer to the Florida governor as Ron “47” DeSantis, since I fully expect him to be elected president in 2024. But at this point, it’s clear that President Biden will be ousted after the midterms. Thus, we will have to endure two years of “President” Kamala Harris first, which will make DeSantis the 48th president.
Following the nightmare shooting at a Uvalde, Texas elementary school, the Rays launched an anti-right-to-bear-arms barrage on social media. Enjoy a few samplings from the team’s Twitter feed:
After vetoing the extravagant outlay of taxpayers’ hard-earned money on a rich baseball team’s practice facility, DeSantis said, “Companies are free to engage or not engage with whatever discourse they want, but clearly…it’s inappropriate to subsidize political activism of a private corporation.”
In April, DeSantis spanked the woke Walt Disney Company by encouraging the Florida state legislature to end the 1967 special improvement act — which had gifted the theme park with the Reedy Creek Improvement District — and by signing the revocation when it hit his desk. The move came in response to Disney’s ill-advised decision to become a political body dedicated to fighting the Parental Rights in Education law, a law which the people of Florida duly passed through their elected representatives and which was overwhelmingly popular with parents of all political persuasions.
Like any malignancy, wokeness develops veins of revenue to feed itself as it grows, and it has no compunction about helping itself to public money when it can get it. Woke corporations are all too happy to appropriate tax dollars in the form of government spending on a sports arena or tax breaks, special perks, and sweetheart deals.
In the case of a politically neutral corporation, there is an argument to be made for government assistance to help the company generate jobs and prosperity.
But if the Rays choose to donate $50,000 to an anti-gun rights organization, or if Disney decides to give $5 million to the LGBTQ.14159… movement, or if any corporation hands over money to BLM or any political organization or cause, then they have no business ever being granted a single penny in public money. Taxation must never be used to support political causes — including when the funds get laundered through corporations — because it is wrong to force private citizens to subsidize a political movement with which they may disagree.
Any company or organization that takes a political position must automatically be disqualified from receiving government largesse, either in the form of grants, tax breaks, or special considerations. Far from being aggressive or controversial, Ron DeSantis is leading the way in keeping public spending neutral and being a good steward of the people’s money.