Jun 5, 2021 • 1HR 30M

Good Corporate Citizen/The Power of Youth

 
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Appears in this episode

Ralph Nader
Ralph Nader talks about what’s happening in America, what’s happening around the world, and most importantly what’s happening underneath it all.
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Ralph welcomes good corporate citizen, Gero Leson, to discuss his book “Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey to a Clean, Green and Ethical Supply Chain.” And progressive wunderkind, Calla Walsh, tells us about her own foray into organizing and influencing Massachusetts politics at the ripe old age of… sixteen.


Gero Leson is Vice President of Special Operations at Dr. Bronner’s. Since 2005, he has been responsible for Dr. Bronner’s sourcing of major ingredients from certified fair trade and organic projects. He is the author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain.

“[The Bronner family] decided they have to look beyond just the operation in the United States. They need to look at where the raw materials that are used for all-natural soaps, where they come from. Now those are mostly tropical oils… and then the thought was ‘We can’t just call ourselves a responsible company without knowing how those materials are grown and processed. And that they hopefully have a beneficial impact on the ground.’”

Gero Leson, author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain

“We’re very strategic about the partners we pick in philanthropy. And that’s just like how we run the business, too. Which is very efficient, in many respects.”

Gero Leson, author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain  

One figure, listeners, that really stunned me– you know, most companies, they give 1% of their pre-tax profits, which is deductible. They brag about it. If they give 3%, they boast about it big time. What you say in this book… is that you (Dr. Bronner’s) give 47% to charitable and educational, environmental, safety, and health projects outside your company.”

Ralph Nader


Calla Walsh is a political organizer from Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has worked on electoral and advocacy campaigns at the federal, state, and local levels, and she is currently teaching a course on winning the youth vote at Movement School NYC Campus.

“For so long, the establishment has held the tools that you need to gain power. But really their tools aren’t starting to work anymore. We saw that with the Markey campaign. Where young people took a really unprecedented approach to digital organizing and using social media to relationally organize our peers, and to turn out voters, and to get people to sign up to volunteer and donate. And now, a ton of people are asking us ‘Hey! How did you do that?’ But… none of these strategies work if you don’t actually have a progressive policy platform.”

Calla Walsh, political activist

“I consider school more of a side job and that organizing and activism takes up a much bigger part of my life. And I just think it’s a lot more important to me. And hopefully [my teachers] understand why school might not be my biggest priority, because there are things that I’m more passionate about outside of school.”

Calla Walsh, political activist and junior in high school


Ralph Nader Radio Hour Ep 378 Transcript
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