At a time when the corporate world has been accused of being biased against President Donald Trump and his sympathizers, exceptional voices have not completely drowned out. Steve Forbes, a veteran publishing executive and head of Forbes Media, has stood up against the editor of his own magazine over warning that companies that rope in officials who worked in the outgoing Donald Trump administration would be blacklisted.
Forbes, 73, told Fox News on Wednesday, January 13: “Unlike Twitter, media giants, and Big Tech companies, we believe in diversity of opinion.” The dig at the social media platforms and Big Tech firms was evident after they targeted the incumbent president and his allies in the wake of the violence carried out by Trump’s supporters at the Capitol Hill on January 6. While platforms such as Twitter and Facebook banned Trump accusing him of inciting the mob, conservative social media platforms like Parler drew the ire of Big Tech companies, irking the president’s support groups.
Steve Forbes said he valued the diversity of opinion at his company while taking a swipe at social media platforms that removed Trump after last week’s rioting at the United States Capitol.
The Forbes magazine editor-in-chief was invited on to the Fox program where he spoke about a controversial op-ed published by Randall Lane, the chief content officer and editor for Forbes magazine, recently. Lane warned firms that may consider hiring the likes of Kayleigh McEnany, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Kellyanne Conway and others who have worked as prominent faces of the Trump administration.
'Trump's fellow fabulists'
“Let it be known to the business world: Hire any of Trump’s fellow fabulists above, and Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie,” Lane wrote in the piece.
Also in the piece that came out a day after the Capitol violence, Lane wrote: “As American democracy rebounds, we need to return to a standard of truth when it comes to how the government communicates with the governed. The easiest way to do that, from where I sit, is to create repercussions for those who don't follow the civic norms. Let it be known to the business world: Hire any of Trump's fellow fabulists above, and Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie.”
The op-ed itself shows Forbes embraces diversity, says Forbes
Forbes made it a point that he was not in agreement with the op-ed and in fact, cited the piece as an example of how his company includes a diversity of viewpoints and called on other firms to follow the same. “This is reminiscent of what we had in the 1950s during the McCarthy era,” he said, adding: “People were denied work because of their political beliefs... We’re not going to have blacklists and the like.”
He said people had the freedom to express their opinions and unlike other organizations, Forbes values its diverse opinions and he believes that shows strength and not weakness.
Forbes, who had run for Republican presidential nomination twice in 1996 and 2000, said that both he and Lane opposed the cancel culture which he feels is a “cancer”.