There’s no need to watch a science fiction film to get a glimpse of an alternative universe.
All anyone needs to do to see a divergent reality from what is accepted by the majority of conscious people in America is simply tune into the proceedings at the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, as it’s popularly known.
For those attending CPAC — the GOP’s favorite opportunity to reach those people on the furthest fringes of the far right-wing — it’s as if the massive repudiation of Donald Trump in his sizeable 2020 election loss to Joe Biden never happened.
The MAGA faithful at the conference have not only bought into the “big lie” that the election was plagued by massive voter fraud despite the inability of a bevy of lawyers of various levels of competence to deliver a shred of evidence to back up those claims but seem undeterred by the former president’s culpability in inciting the violence in the halls of the Capitol with his incendiary lies.
It’s not just Joe and Jill Six-pack who are deluded enough to ignore the departures from the rational world necessary to accept the alternative reality as scripted by Trump and his allies.
CEOs of major corporations — and minor ones like My Pillow — are also genuflecting to the orange idol and to his gilded image as brought to the conference by an ardent supporter.
Take Goya Foods CEO Robert Unanue who benefited mightily from the likely illegal promotion of his company’s products in the White House by Trump and his daughter Ivanka.
The third-generation family business executive waxed eloquently and insanely today as he addressed the crowds at CPAC while peddling the heresy popular among its attendees that Joe Biden is not the legitimate president of the United States.
“It’s just an honor to be here. But my biggest honor today is gonna be that — I think we’re gonna be on the same stage — as, in my opinion, the real, the legitimate, and the still actual president of the United States, Donald J. Trump,” the Goya CEO deludedly declared from the stage.
— Helen Kennedy (@HelenKennedy) February 28, 2021
The idea that one can create a new reality by seriously rejecting the actual reality is a time-honored tradition among people so traumatized by the actual events in the real world that they retreat into one of their own makings.
Usually, however, such behavior is rewarded with a visit from the nice young men in their clean white coats and a swift removal to a psychiatric treatment center.
At CPAC, by contrast, Unanue’s words were met with thunderous applause, as if people were happy to hear that their own persistent delusions were shared by others, even people with real jobs.
How the board of directors at Goya Foods will react to Mr. Unanue’s CPAC speech is another matter entirely, given that they voted last month to require him to seek their permission before sharing his personal political views with the media.
Social media commentators didn’t need much reflection time to know how they felt about the canned bean peddler’s latest political misdirection.
Alternative products https://t.co/k9MZ9sjJr9
— Eriksson (@ErikssonHill) February 28, 2021
It’s game over for @GoyaFoods
Their CEO stood on #cpac stage and claimed the US election was fraudulent.
Sorry #Goya … I’m done buying your products.
Your tacit support for seditious and traitorous behavior is a step too far.
Your board needs to evaluate your decisions pic.twitter.com/BfDPqcdnRB
— Jeff Shuey #WearYourMask (@jshuey) February 28, 2021
Remember that Ivanka Trump’s official endorsement of Goya products on social media was an apparent violation of federal ethics rules and standards of conduct https://t.co/fPZDLP6pG0
— Citizens for Ethics (@CREWcrew) February 28, 2021
Goya ceo has stated st cpac that Trump is still the President. I will no longer buy GOYA. #IWONTBUYGOYA
— Theodore Horoschak (@TheodoreHorosc1) February 28, 2021
— Luis Spencer Freitas (@L_Spencer) February 28, 2021
I hear from thousands of Trump supporters every day. They all believe exactly what this Goya Foods CEO said today. “Trump really won.” They ALL believe it. https://t.co/y2RsKjcoP6
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) February 28, 2021
The board should fire him. Goya CEO declares Trump the 'legitimate' president before cheering CPAC crowd https://t.co/LugHEjlvnw
— Lesley Abravanel (@lesleyabravanel) February 28, 2021
NOW: @GoyaFoods feels the heat . . .
This appearance today and the statement of Goya`s CEO Robert Unanue:
"Trump is still the actual president" opened everyone`s eyes.
— Marko Silberhand (@MarkoSilberhand) February 28, 2021
Shameful. I am calling for a boycott of all Goya Foods until such time as this company separates from CEO Unanue. Enough is enough. Do not buy their products until Unanue is out completely. Silencing him is not enough. https://t.co/wJuATZWmyP
— Richard Signorelli (@richsignorelli) February 28, 2021
It’s a good thing that in the real world — not the one invented from the wishful thinking of the MAGA types — Mr. Unanue’s opinion about the legitimacy of Joe Biden’s presidency doesn’t amount to a hill of beans.
Goya’s board of directors should help resolve their company’s enormous public relations problem by simply showing Mr.Unanue the door at their earliest opportunity.
It won’t matter to him. He can continue to claim that he is the legitimate CEO of the company even after he is ousted, judging from his current disregard for the truth.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.