The TTAG tipster who alerted us to PepsiCo’s financial support of Gabrielle Giffords’ 2013 civilian disarmament gabfest entered “pepsico” into the search bar at aspenideas.org. (Fiendishly clever, eh?) Up popped Brad Jakeman, President, Global Beverage Group, PepsiCo, Inc., right below none other than Gabrielle Giffords, the doyenne of disarmament. Being the seasoned journalist I am I Googled Mr. Jakeman’s name and the festival and found the YouTubery above. According to Mr. Jakeman’s full official bio the Aussie was the marketing maven behind Activision’s gun-intensive Call of Duty video game (“There’s a soldier in all of us”). Here he is below Ms. Giffords . . .
Mr. Jakeman was joined at the Aspen Ideas Festival by B. Bonin Bough. At the time, Mr. Bough was the global head of digital and social media at PepsiCo. (Mr. Bough is now Vice President of Global Media and Consumer Engagement at Mondelēz International (formerly KRAFT Foods.) Here’s his bio from the Aspen Ideas Festival:
Mr. Bough’s connection with guns is (as far as we know) tangential: his former employer Weber Shandwick advised – and may still be advising – Cerberus Capital Management in its efforts to sell the Freedom Group, “the gun maker that produced the assault rifle used in the Dec. 14 Newton, Conn., school shooting.” Again, Mr. Bough left Shandwick in 2008.
PepsiCo is all over the Aspen Ideas Festival. (As is the resolutely anti-gun Atlantic magazine.) The unidentified speaker at the end of the Pepsi-branded promo video above asks the audience to recognize that “ideas come from listening to people with both sides of view.” I wonder if there was a speaker putting forth the pro-gun point-of-view during the Gabrielle Giffords/Mark Kelley gun control chin wag. No? This is my surprised face. And here’s another 2013 Aspen Ideas Festival video from the well-paid heads of Americans for Responsible Solutions.
We’ll chase up PepsiCo’s promise to get back to TTAG with a clarification of their sponsorship of the civilian disarmament cart-and-pony show and report back.