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Super Mario Smashes Disney’s Political Agenda

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Knowledge Nuggets:

  • The Super Mario Bros. Movie broke the record for the biggest opening for an animated film, earning $377 million globally in its first five days, surpassing Frozen II.
  • Despite receiving mixed reviews from critics, the film has been well-received by fans of the video game franchise, with a 96% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.
  • The movie is the biggest opening of any film so far this year, appealing to both families and adults who grew up playing Nintendo’s popular Mario games.
  • A family movie that doesn’t push politics or ideology onto children.

A Super Movie For ALL Audiences

This film has not only surpassed the opening box office records of previous animated films but has also become the biggest opening of any film so far this year. As someone who has gotten sick of taking my grandkids to see a family movie only to be forced to sit through subtle ideological political propaganda targeted at kids, it was a breath of fresh air to go see Super Mario Bros. I was ecstatic to see a family movie that was simply A FAMILY MOVIE. No politics, no agenda, it was just a pleasant, fun and wholesome experience. Apparently I’m not the only one who felt this way either.

Despite the movie’s mixed reviews from critics, “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” has garnered an impressive 96% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. This is a testament to the dedication and love that gamers have for the characters, stories, and overall franchise of Super Mario Bros.

The film’s running time is only 92 minutes, much shorter than many blockbusters, allowing theaters to pack in more screenings. This allows for more opportunities for fans to see their favorite characters come to life on the big screen.

The success of “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” is also attributed to its wide appeal, drawing in not only families but also adults who grew up playing Nintendo’s popular Mario games. This is a testament to the timeless appeal of the characters and the franchise, as well as the dedicated fan base that has followed the games for decades.

Most importantly it doesn’t alienate audiences. It doesn’t have any agenda other than entertaining the audience, something that animation behemoths like Disney need to learn from. I am reminded of the warnings that Vivek Ramaswamy wrote about several months ago and I feel it is worth reiterating to explain the issue Disney has, and how it strayed so far from family entertainment company to a company hell bent on being cultural warriors.

Disney Has A Death Wish Spelled W-O-K-E.

Knowledge Nuggets:

  • Disney’s biggest investors allegedly pushed executives to take a stand against the controversial Florida education legislation that came to be known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which would ban classroom instruction of sexual orientation and gender identity through the third grade.
  • Vivek Ramaswamy, the author of Woke, Inc., argued that BlackRock, Vanguard Group, and State Street, which are among Disney’s three largest shareholders and owned a combined 15.3% of the company, were exerting influence on Disney’s decision-making process.
  • Ramaswamy claims that stakeholder capitalism, which emphasizes providing value to customers, employees, suppliers, and communities in addition to serving shareholders, is betraying the true clients of asset managers like BlackRock, Vanguard Group, and State Street.

We all should be troubled by the news that giant investors pushed Disney into the culture war. The fact that corporations are wading into politics is not new, but the revelation that the largest asset managers in the United States are influencing the decisions of one of the world’s most beloved entertainment companies is concerning, and dangerous.

Disney initially did not take a position on the Florida education legislation known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, but eventually came out against it after facing pressure from employees and shareholders. Vivek Ramaswamy, the bestselling author of Woke, Inc., argued that BlackRock, Vanguard Group, and State Street, which own a combined 15.3% of the company, are the ones calling the shots when it comes to corporate political forays like this one. According to Ramaswamy, the money managers are “quietly telling” Disney to push social agendas like opposition to the Florida legislation.

What’s even more troubling is the idea of stakeholder capitalism, which emphasizes providing value to customers, employees, suppliers, and communities in addition to serving shareholders. Ramaswamy claims that asset managers like BlackRock, Vanguard Group, and State Street are “betraying their true clients” by pushing Disney and other companies to wade into the realm of politics and stakeholder prioritization. This is a complicated issue that requires a nuanced understanding of corporate governance, but the fact that shareholders are exerting influence over companies like Disney is concerning.

It’s worth noting that Larry Fink, the founder and CEO of BlackRock, has faced criticism for his company’s involvement in issues such as climate change and domestic political matters while conducting business in China, which is accused of committing genocide against ethnic Uyghurs. In his annual letter to CEOs, Fink rebutted complaints that BlackRock has gone “woke” and emphasized that stakeholder capitalism is not about politics or ideology, but rather about mutually beneficial relationships between companies and their stakeholders.

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The idea of giant investors pushing companies like Disney to take political stands is horrifying due to it’s fascist undertones. It’s important for companies to remain neutral on political issues, especially when it comes to controversial topics. Stakeholder capitalism may sound good in theory, but in practice, it can lead to shareholder interests being subverted by the interests of other stakeholders. As consumers, we should be aware of the power that asset managers wield and hold them accountable for their actions. From the looks of it the market has spoken. Disney one year ago was trading at $130.65 a share, currently at the time of writing this they sit below $101 per share, over a 22% decrease. If Disney doesn’t drop the politics it will die on an ideological hill with companies like Universal and Illumination taking their market share.


Sources: MSN , Washington Examiner , Yahoo Finance

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