In case you haven’t heard, PayPal has reversed its decision to expand in North Carolina out of protest in the wake of the passage of HB 2. Because of that, Charlotte is going to miss out on 400 jobs, even though it was their City Council that passed the transgender non-discrimination bathroom ordinance in the first place.

Conservatives aren’t backing down, though. In fact, something very interesting is starting to come about: a complete reversal in the views of the political parties on big business. The liberal position is now, “Big business knows best.” Conservatives, on the other hand, are starting to point out big business hypocrisy.

For an example of this, look no further than the Republican primary in the newly drawn Ninth Congressional District, which contains part of Charlotte. Both Rep. Robert Pittenger and his primary challenger, Rev. Mark Harris, are pointing out that PayPal does business in countries where homosexual behavior is illegal. It goes to show that, at least in GOP primaries, you can’t go wrong by standing up for HB 2 and against the corporate establishment.

But this isn’t just limited to Republican primaries; Governor McCrory and Senator Berger are making the same arguments – that PayPal does business in places like Cuba and Saudi Arabia, so to single out North Carolina for criticism is hypocritical. Republicans are bashing big business because big business is now aligned with the progressives.

For years, corporate and Christian America lived together in an uneasy marriage. By mutual agreement, the evangelicals agreed not to rail against the excesses of corporations. In return, the corporations agreed to keep quiet on the social issues. The problem is that big business hasn’t upheld their end of the bargain, and a divorce is coming soon.

Instead, corporate America is going to cast their lot with the progressive Left. The new arrangement: big business will fight for the progressives in the culture wars. In return, the progressives will ease up on their criticism of the business elite.

The fight over HB 2 shows that the future of the Republican Party is the economic populism of Donald Trump combined with the social conservatism of Ted Cruz. The Democrats’ future will be an uneasy alliance between big business, racial minorities, and social justice activists. Obviously, this coalition will show cracks with time but for now the alliance has worked well for all involved, which accounts for the certainty of HB 2 opponents that they are indeed on “the right side of history.”


  1. The Ghost of Elections Past

    Has anyone yet figured out that HateBill2 now makes it illegal for women who may be tempted to leave the long lines for the women’s room at public forums to venture into the men’s room for more immediate relief?

    • JC Honeycutt

      From what I’ve seen of the General Assembly majority, they’d consider that a “crime against nature”. Our deity (insert preferred holy name) would agree (and/or decree) that a woman peeing in a men’s stall is an abomination worth of permanent shunning and loss of rights, if not stoning. G*d made women to wait on and defer to men, and that includes men’s bathrooms. This is what happens when idiots elect even bigger idiots (I’m looking at you, NC Republicans).

      • Ebrun

        What a load of fallacious, idiotic demagoguery! Has one of the patients fled the mental ward?

  2. Chris Telesca

    “Instead, corporate America is going to cast their lot with the progressive Left. The new arrangement: big business will fight for the progressives in the culture wars. In return, the progressives will ease up on their criticism of the business elite.”

    Fat fu*king chance that the progressive Left ease up on their criticism of the business elite. Why do you think Bernie Sanders is doing so well? Our pitchforks are out and they are aimed at rich pukes and the corporate elite who have been skipping out on paying their fair share of taxes by bribing politicians of BOTH parties and running their money through PO Boxes of ficitional corporations created by law firms in Panama, Ireland and Switzerland.

  3. Progressive Wing

    Raleigh, NC (April 7, 2016): “Potty slob arrested; State may delvefurther into bathroom legislation, enforcement”

    A North Carolina man who inadvertently forgot to wash his hands after using a state building restroom in Charlotte may force the state into additional law-making to safeguard its bathrooms.

    Ferd Burfle, who lives in Cornelius, was arrested upon leaving a NC State Parks restroom after state investigators, viewing through a hidden camera, determined that he did not washed his hands after using a urinal. Electrical meter use records at the park verified that the hand dryer had not been activated during the time-stamp on the camera video. According to State Police, this meter evidence could lead to an additional charge of reckless endangerment against the man.

    A week ago, the NCGA passed Republican-sponsored legislation known as HB2, which led to a firestorm of criticism from across the nation. In response, the NCGOP said in a news release that the law was needed to “protect our women and children from horrific physical and mental abuses that have never occurred to date in our bathrooms, but could some day, because Obama. Or Benghazi.”

    Burfle’s attorneys reported that he has apologized to authorities, saying that he thought Senator Thom Tillis’ federal bill (making it illegal to require workers to wash their hands) had become law. But that bill has been bottled-up by a Senate filibuster led by Sen. Ted Cruz, and has yet to come up for a vote.

    HB2 prompted PayPal to withdraw its plans for a 400-job, $20M annual payroll operations center in Charlotte. In that case, Senator Phil Berger had blamed that loss of jobs on the Mayor of Charlotte and its city council for “compelling the state to pass a very rushed bill that, in hindsight, really was a turd. But we were left with no choice.”

    Berger also said that the media was partially to blame for PayPal’s leaving as “the press had no right to call attention to HB2’s weaknesses and possible adverse effects as it has only been in effect for a couple of days. It hasn’t had enough time on the books to have the severe economic impacts that Republicans must see before making decisions that will benefit the state.”

    Berger said that he has no plans to seek a repeal of HB2. “The safety of our women and children requires total inaction on the part of the Republican Party.”

    • James

      Don’t give them any ideas.

  4. Ebrun

    We can expect to hear any day now corporate announcements that American Airlines will shut down its Charlotte hub, Bank of American will move its HQs to (high corporate tax) Connecticut, Wells Fargo will close its NC branches, Lowes will sell its NC stores to Home Depot and Apple will abandon its NC data center and plow under all those solar farms they’ve built. LOL

  5. Nortley

    HB2 = jobs killer.

  6. Morris

    The root of this whole thing, which many are missing the point on, was the frankly ridiculous Charlotte city council ordinance that precipitated it.
    My wife and I live near Charlotte, both socially very liberal – wife extremely so – and when we heard of the ordinance we both looked at each other and said “WOW!”
    She was immediately concerned about going into a public restroom on her many trips to Charlotte and encountering a man in there with her. While she wasn’t worried so much about being attacked, it was more about being very uncomfortable. I think many women feel the same way.
    And what was the problem the ordinance was solving anyway? There was no genital police in Charlotte checking up people’s dresses to see if they were transgender. People were relieving themselves just fine every day.
    Gay men are no less male than straight men, and have been using men’s restrooms forever with no problems. They sure aren’t going to feel comfortable in women’s. I am quite sure transgenders, dressed as such, have been using the restrooms they were dressed for as well.
    While we can agree the legislature may have gone too far to overturn a stupid local ordinance, as far as business is concerned it probably helps in the long haul. I say that because I have for many years been involved with corporate expansions and M&E’s. They really do not care about LGBT rights. What they want is clarity as far as the the regulatory environment is concerned. Regulations are just extra cost to them, and the NC law prevents local jurisdictions from passing some of their own varied local regulations after a company moves in.
    All in all, lest we forget, this law may not be the political issue some think it is. After all the NC “marriage amendment”, while overturned in the Supreme Court, passed nearly 2 to 1 just a few short years ago. That’s probably what the Democrats who crossed over were thinking.

    • Mooser

      Your first response of “Wow” seems a little misplaced to me. I’ve read similar comments on other blogs. It’s as if you think that the Charlotte ordinance suddenly gave men permission to go into women’s restrooms and commit crimes without any fear of punishment! There are already laws against assault and peeping and indecent exposure, and Charlotte’s ordinance would have had no effect on any of that. Most public restrooms don’t have locks on the doors, so any man could already go into a women’s restroom if he wanted to! The real purpose of HB 2 was the OTHER provisions in it – stripping away other local ordinances and preventing people from suing in state court. The bathroom stuff was just a cover.

    • James

      Morris, you’re conflating gender identity and sexuality, and the two are not the same. Gay men do indeed use mens’ restrooms, but the point you miss is that gay men IDENTIFY as male. Similarly, a lesbian woman would feel perfectly at home in the ladies’ because she identifies as female. So far, nothing breaks down and HB2 doesn’t even come into play (at least not restroom-wise).

      But then we are presented with the transgendered woman who identifies as female — not simply in dress, but in all respects REGARDLESS of her sexuality. So finding a trans woman in the ladies’ would be no more alarming than finding any other woman there. Even supposing that she is also lesbian, straight women encounter cisgender lesbians in the loo all the time and nobody seems to find that terribly alarming.

      Basically, a woman in the women’s restroom — whether trans or not — should not be cause for alarm.

  7. Robert Player

    Sorry, I can’t continue to waste my valuable reading time on Mr. Wynne’s conservative perspective. I think PayPal made a decision based on values I can agree witarabia h, and Mr Wynne’s views are the sort the will turn North Carolina into the Saudi Arabia. When were liberal views able to be so succinctly summed up in the phrase “Business knows best?” Mr. Wynn is out of touch and out of my reading list.

    • TY Thompson

      North Carolina into Saudi Arabia? Hyperbole much? I would submit that the extremist backlash to a sensible law that 1) frustrates sexual predators, and 2) reigns in a city government that seeks to impose it’s values on private entities, and exceeds the city government’s purview in any event, is more akin to Saudi totalitarianism.

  8. JC Honeycutt

    One of the objectives of liberals is to make businesses (and institutions generally) more humane and responsive to the needs of their customers, human beings generally, and the planet as a whole. This in no way equates with “Big business knows best”: and I’m reasonable certain you know that, Mr. Wynne.

    I believe it’s possible to be conservative without being a hypocrite: perhaps you meant that statement as a joke, in which case I have misunderstood your point. If you were serious, you are confusing liberals with Republicans–at least with Republicans who have money (and perhaps even businesses). Republicans who don’t have money are simply deluded: the Republican Party is willing to use racism to whip them up to vote for their ticket (their “mutual agreement”), and even to elect them if they’re the only options available to the GOP–but aside from that, the traditional GOP (AKA “the old guard”) wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire.

  9. larry

    Dude, you cannot be serious. Do you actually believe the poppy cock you write? I suppose if you insist on deluding yourself to get through the day go ahead but I am not sure you should ever put what dances about in your head should be published or even said out loud. In any case this post, like most, is just wrong .

  10. Norma Munn

    I think the fact that Pay Pal does business in countries that deem homosexuality illegal misses the point entirely. Pay Pal does not have to have any kind of business center in NC to do business in the US, so the NC competition is not another country. It is another state of which there are many that do not carry discrimination as far as HB2 did. There is also a distinction between having only the option of doing no business in a country and deciding to continue doing business in the USA, but take the jobs to a more hospitable place.
    It would also be more accurate if you recognized that HB2 is not simply about overturning the Charlotte ordinance regarding the use of bathrooms by transsexuals. I am sure that business executives did not miss the other aspects of that legislation. (And just for accuracy, PayPal does not do business in Cuba, it is planning to this fall — if all goes well, which given the state of internet connections in Cuba is a very big “if.”)
    With regard to the rest of the analysis for the future relationship between the left and big corporations, or the Christian America (equated with evangelicals, which is simply inaccurate as many Christians are clearly not evangelicals) and the economic populism of a Donald Trump, I think that it is somewhat lacking in logic to discern so much from the controversy over HB2, or even this muddled and weird presidential nominating contest. There may be a realignment taking place, but I seriously doubt it will be so neat and tidy as you predict.

  11. Kick Butt

    We have one prayer and answer, but it is for the long-haul: the changing demographics in NC will eventually dictate a change in the composition of the General Assembly, but that is probably 14 years off!

  12. Bob

    Mr. Wynne is right on target. This is why Hillary will win the presidency. No one is excited about her but Cruz and Trump are wacko and the business elite know they can count on her the way they counted on her husband. They are not sure about Cruz and Trump and for good reason. As a result of the shifts Mr. Wynne is identifying, big business will grow more liberal on social issues AND economic issues but the advantages will mostly accrue to the educated elite, who will earn more concessions from business on non-cash benefits such as medical leave and day care assistance. Working class workers with less education will receive a higher minimum wage but experience more difficulty finding and keeping work as automation takes over many tasks that were once done by unskilled labor. Social conservatism will be used by right leaning politicians to inflame resentment over economic downward mobility and that will keep them in power. But those politicians will do nothing much about downward mobility because… it keeps them in power. I predict the South and rural Midwest will become scary places to live as this continues, with more violence and draconian social values legislation. Libertarians are done for, which, even though I am not one, I think is too bad.

    • A. D. Reed

      Sorry, Bob, but some of us ARE excited about Hillary becoming president. We’re not out there tweeting and commenting and attending rallies and spending hours at caucuses, but we’re enthusiastically voting for her by a 40% margin over Bernie in the primary (as opposed to caucus) states, where registered Democrats actually go to the polls and vote.

      Just sayin’.

  13. Kick Butt

    John, you are out there a little bit, perhaps a couple steps too far, but in the long run you could be correct. After all, a year ago who would have predicted the dilemma that the Republican Party currently finds itself today.

    The point is that PayPal has taken $20,000,000 annually off the North Carolina table in wages. Connecticut is now wooing Bank of America to move its international headquarters from North Carolina.

    Our governor and legislature are still dithering and pointing fingers at everyone else but themselves as they continue their puerile behavior and throw sand from their sandbox at everyone else – New York, Charlotte City Council, PayPal, etc.

    Let’s get real. The only parties who can solve the problem are the Governor and the General Assembly. They need to go to work, quit posturing, move forward and rescind the “An Act to Provide for Single-Sex Multiple Occupancy Bathroom and Changing Facilities in Schools and Public Agencies and to Create Statewide Consistency in Regulation of Employment and Public Accommodations” aka HB-2.

    The sooner, the better….

    • Ebrun

      Sorry, kick butt, while the NCGA may approve minor tweaks to HB2, it won’t be rescinded anytime soon, especially in the face of out-of-state pressure from big business. And while McCrory could be defeated for re election, not because of HB2, but more likely because of a Trump at the head of the ticket, the NCGA will remain in Republican control for the foreseeable future.

      So best grin and bare it. HB2 won’t really change anything much since it’s effect will be mostly symbolic.

      • old_lib

        ebrun, HateBill2 will be overturned as unconstitutional by a Federal District Judge before you can say “Jesse Helms”.

  14. Apply Liberally

    Oh, and BTW, if the future of the GOP is “the economic populism of Donald Trump combined with the social conservatism of Ted Cruz,” then Bobby Jindal was right — yours is the “party of stupid.”

  15. Apply Liberally

    Pure, callous, regressive, delusional fantasy, Mr. Wynne. Leave political blogging, and go into sci-fi writing. You are better suited for that…..

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