Photo by Salt Water New England

Thursday, November 29, 2018

L.L. Bean Aligned with Conservative Traits

Quoted in many publications including The New York Times:
[A]ccording to new information from Christopher Wylie, the Cambridge Analytica whistle-blower,  “Fashion data was used to build AI models to help Steve Bannon build his insurgency and build the alt-right”... 
He mentioned Wrangler and L.L. Bean in particular as brands that Cambridge Analytica aligned with conservative traits. 
- Cambridge Analytica Used Fashion Tastes to Identify Right-Wing Voters, <>
While traditionally right-leaning hunters and left-leaning environmentalists have effectively worked together to preserve countless acres of land, apparently affiliation with L.L. Bean is statistically better represented in the former than latter group, as well as an indicator of a better prospect for the "alt-right" (Wylie) community.  The marketing of Bean, in contrast, often tries to paint a more balanced view, perhaps trying to hang on to a few of the customers from decades past.

This data-driven observation likely came before Trump tweeted, “Thank you to Linda Bean of L.L.Bean for your great support and courage...  People will support you even more now. Buy L.L.Bean. @LBPerfectMaine.” after, "Linda Bean, the granddaughter of L.L. Bean founder Leon Leonwood Bean, donated $60,000 to Making America Great Again LLC, according to the Associated Press. That contribution exceeded the Federal Election Commission’s allowable limit for the PAC and her support has prompted some to push for a boycott of the Maine-based company." <> This would suggest the data could have influenced the tweet, not the other way around.


  1. I think that traditional brands are going to be associated more and more with conservatives every year that passes. Thats one of the points of conservativism: preserve the traditional stuff. Probably Barbour, Rancourt, Quoddy, Cordings and other similar corporations from the UK or New England are also associated with conservative demographics

  2. (1) The "alt-right" only had brief existence exclusively online, ca. 2015-17; used as a leftist boogeyman, it was basically a few immature basement geeks who got caught up in GamerGate and 4chan and made a sport of trolling equally extreme basement geek SJW's. None of which is "real-world."

    (2) Conservatism--venerable, respectable and bearing no relationship to (1), has historically been strongly identified with upper-class WASP values, family dynasties, and financial success. Or to put it another way, those who are on speaking terms with main-line religion, whose two parents make sure they finish school, who get a good job, marry before they have children, eventually buy a house and competently and confidently assume financial and social responsibilities of traditional family life are more likely to be politically conservative. And to buy higher-end business and vacation clothing from L.L. Bean.

    (3) Tantrum-throwing anarchists without practical ideas on governance are not only a bad look, their Marxist-leaning overlords eventually run out of other people's money with which to undermine (2) above.

    (4) Most of us just want the trains to run on time, the bridges to stay up, the potholes to be filled, the police and firemen to come if you call them and to be LEFT ALONE to live our lives as we see fit, while paying reasonable taxes.

    (5) Unfortunately, eyeballs and clicks get a bigger rush from (3) than (2) or (4).
    Follow the money. . .

    Bannon didn't build the alt right.

  4. Longtime LL Bean supporter and customer. But I will drop them like a hot potato if this turns out to be true. We don't support Tea Baggers, alt righters, or neo-conservatives.

    We will be watching closely.

  5. I think Ms. Bean and her customers don't share the same political views in general. Crocs and My Pillow customers may be better to track.

    David J. Cooper

  6. Yikes! As someone who is both a LLBean customer and a liberal, I certainly hope not.

  7. It would be nice to see nothing political on your blog - it's perfect the way it is.

  8. It seems someone is always trying to stereotype others politically by the clothes they wear or the cars they drive. It doesn't really work. Often it appears to be more an effort to identify who to exclude and criticize than who to emulate and admire. Not very nice. Another example here:

  9. I don’t agree with the alt-right or Linda Bean on anything but I would be fine with this if it meant they would bring production back to the US. The only things I have from them are boots, boat totes, and a Norwegian sweater and chore coat from the 80’s that are still going strong.