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  • ESG’s perverse, narrow, fraudulent ethical principles

ESG’s perverse, narrow, fraudulent ethical principles

Paul Driessen

December 2022

ESG’s perverse, narrow, fraudulent ethical principles

Failure of basic fiduciary duties to investors is just the tip of ESG fraud iceberg

Warning: Your retirement fund may have been Shanghaied by BlackRock or other Wall Street asset managers who’ve unilaterally decided that the tens of trillions of dollars of other people’s money they control should be used to advance political causes they favor – to “make the world a better place.”

As most people know, ESG stands for http://fft3.com//wp-content/king.php Environmental protection, buy accutane online pharmacy Social justice, and Governance of corporate and societal affairs. They’re all noble-sounding causes. However, under ESG they’re centered around progressive, woke agendas, with prevention of “manmade climate cataclysms” uppermost. Fund assets are used to drive “net zero” climate agendas and punish or de-fund fossil fuel companies.

That narrow focus creates serious problems. Those trillions of dollars are supposed to be passively invested in index and other funds, under fiduciary obligations to secure maximum returns in support of state, local, corporate and personal retirement and investment accounts. Under ESG, however, strong returns are too often sacrificed to serve politicized agendas, often in collusion with governments, activists and other financial institutions, and thus also in violation of antitrust laws and basic ethical principles.

That’s why Asset manager Vanguard recently left the UN-sponsored “Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero.” Meanwhile, Arizona, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Texas, West Virginia and other states are pulling tens of billions of dollars out of BlackRock, State Street and other Wall Street asset management firms, for violating fiduciary duties. It’s just the tip of the fraud iceberg.

Woke ESG practitioners also employ narrow ES&G definitions to virtue-signal, pontificate and impose prescriptive agendas with little or no regard for the consequences. When the “existential threat of manmade climate change” is the primary arbiter, enormous problems associated with replacing fossil fuels with “clean renewable energy” are simply ignored, suppressed and censored out of the analysis.

People and planet realities absolutely have to be included in any ethical ESG analysis.

Environmental protection. Rather than looking only at the temperatures, storms, droughts, rising seas and other environmental costs that climate models falsely blame on fossil fuel emissions – any accurate and honest ESG scorecard must also assess the enormous ecological impacts from wind-solar-battery (WSB) energy systems that will supposedly replace oil, gas and coal.

WSB systems and associated transmission lines do not appear spontaneously, via Materials Acquisition for Global Industrial Change (MAGIC). They require mining on unprecedented scales. President Biden’s initial batch of offshore wind turbines alone would require 110,000 tons of copper, refined from 25,000,000 tons of ore, after removing 40,000,000 tons of overburden – plus millions of tons of iron, manganese, aluminum, nickel, concrete, plastics and other materials … from billions of tons of ores.

Replacing all U.S. coal and gas electricity generation with WSB – plus gasoline vehicles and gas stoves and furnaces – would require tens of thousands of wind turbines, billions of solar panels, billions of battery modules for vehicles and backup electricity storage, and thousands of miles of new transmission lines. Has BlackRock calculated the ore body and mining requirements for that? For a global transition?

All those turbines, panels, modules, transmission lines, mines, processing plants and factories have to be located somewhere. Have the ESG potentates determined in whose backyards they will go? (Probably not Larry Fink’s or John Kerry’s.) Have they assessed the impacts on scenery, habitats and wildlife? the air and water pollution from the mines and other operations? the likelihood that endangered right whales would be driven to extinction by wind turbine installations off the U.S. Atlantic Coast?

Do all these WSB mines, foundries, factories and impacts even get (obviously negative) ESG scores?

Social justice. ESG theology holds that the poor and people of color suffer most from climate change. In reality, they benefit most from having abundant, reliable, affordable fuels and electricity – for cars, jobs, modern homes, cooking, heat and air conditioning. In fact, the poor and people of color are not faring all that well in Britain and Europe, where the “transition to green energy” is well underway.

Over seven million British households have fallen into “fuel poverty” this winter, and special “warm rooms” have been set up to help people survive freezing weather. Recent headlines warn that Britain could have nationwide blackouts and extensive factory shutdowns and layoffs this winter. In Germany, families are stocking up on candles, so that they can at least read while they shiver jobless in their homes.

People are dying – who would have survived illnesses and preexisting health conditions if they hadn’t been so impoverished, cold and malnourished. In the USA, 14% of seniors have skipped meals and 10% delayed or canceled medical procedures or rationed prescription medications in 2022 because of sharply rising energy, food and other prices. Honest ESG scores would factor all this in, as well.

Developing countries desperately need dependable, affordable electricity to create jobs, lift families out of poverty, modernize homes, schools and hospitals, provide clean water, and replace wood and animal dung for cooking and heating. Even today, millions of parents and children die from respiratory and intestinal diseases that are unheard of in wealthy countries, because they don’t have electricity.

ESG scoring ignores all of this, actively stymies investment in fossil fuel power plants in African and other countries, and attempts to limit financing to wind and solar energy and whatever jobs and living standards this limited, weather-dependent energy can support. That’s hardly ethical or socially responsible.

Governance of corporate and societal affairs. ESG activists and financial institutions coopt and collude with corporate, federal, state and local governments to serve the climate crisis agenda, and drive investment out of fossil fuel endeavors and into “renewable” energy. In essence, this is fascism, an economic system in which government doesn’t own the means of production, but controls them through laws, policies and arrangements with financial institutions, corporations, activists, media and academia.

Equally troublesome, ESG inevitably results in modern industrialized nations de-developing, as their factories and jobs migrate to China, India and other countries that are not obligated under climate agreements to reduce their coal and natural gas use anytime soon, have no intention of doing so, and are burning record amounts of coal to ensure reliable and affordable electricity.

This also raises disturbing national security concerns, as the United States and its allies become ever more dependent on Chinese factories and Chinese controlled supply chains for wind, solar, battery, transformer, communication, computing, healthcare and even defense/weaponry raw materials and technologies.

ESG advocates minimize these concerns, even as they ignore how soaring raw material demands under Net Zero agendas would trigger skyrocketing prices for increasingly scarce commodities, and thus imperil the energy infrastructures and economies of nations across the globe.

The words scam and fraud come to mind. But an even better term has its origins in China – Shanghaied: using trickery, intimidation or violence to force someone to serve your navy … or company. In this case, ESG pressures are forcing investors, companies and countries to serve the interest of China’s government and corporate sectors, which control supply chains and manufacturing for technologies of every description, especially in the energy sector. ESG scorecards pay no attention to this, either.

In fact, BlackRock, State Street, other ESG stalwarts, and their government and environmentalist allies seem intent on destroying our planet with “green” energy, to save it from fossil fuel calamities that exist in climate models and fevered imaginations (as in “Earth has a fever”) … but not in the Real World.

This Christmas or Hanukkah, let’s all give our friends, relatives and financial institutions the gift of wise, honest, accurate and insightful Environmental, Social and Governance principles.

Paul Driessen is senior policy advisor for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (www.CFACT.org) and author of books and articles on energy, environmental and human rights issues.

 

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  • New Green Republics: Utopia or the Elites Inherit the Earth?

New Green Republics: Utopia or the Elites Inherit the Earth?

William L. Kovacs

August 2022

New Green Republics:  Utopia or the Elites Inherit the Earth?

As governments and their institutions, big business, financial institutions, environmental groups, and the radical left are consumed with anxiety over climate change, they seem to ignore every other issue confronting humanity. Or, is their use of climate change a false narrative to hide their real intent? The recent baffling actions by governments in Sri Lanka and the Netherlands point to the establishment of “New Green Republics.” The Biden administration is attempting to pursue a similar course.

Sri Lanka is an island nation off the coast of India. It had been rebuilding itself for decades after years of authoritarian rule. Its agriculture yield had so dramatically increased it had become a middle-income nation until its government banned the use of fertilizers for growing crops. The nation quickly became a nightmare with people starving, a third of its land dormant, crop yields cut in half, energy shortages and skyrocketing inflation. The people revolted.

At the same time, the Netherlands government announced plans to cut emissions of nitrogen and ammonia thereby forcing the closure of thousands of family farms. Another baffling move since Dutch farmers are the second largest food exporters in the world. The farmers launched protests similar to the Canadian truckers. The protests are ongoing.

Across the world, governments are seeking to ban new factory farms, pesticides, and even the use of pesticides on private property, beef, turkey, chicken, and cheese. Environmentalists are even organizing a revolution against factory-made food. To some, the entire food system is a threat to the environment.

Several commentators attribute Sri Lanka’s fall to its president’s “being under the spell of western green elites peddling organic agriculture and seeking a high ESG” (Environment, Social and Governance) rating. Sri Lanka has a near-perfect ESG score of 98. The U.S. has a 51, down with Cuba and Bulgaria. The Netherlands has a 90.7 ESG score.

These woke-type governments are choosing “climate and ESG goals at the expense of feeding their populations and enabling citizens to keep their homes warm during the winter.” These governments, including the Biden administration, seem to be under some type of a spell that blocks their use of common sense to work for the betterment of their people.

Unfortunately, for all who somehow give credence to ESG scores, they are like all other ranking efforts, subjective to the narrative to be achieved. An ESG score is defined as a numerical measure of how a corporation or country is perceived to be performing on a wide range of environmental, social, and governance topics. The operative word in the definition is “perceived.” How is the nation perceived? There is a gap between what is real and what is perceived. It’s simply a branding effort.  Moreover, for government ratings, an ESG rating “explains” how a nation’s risk factors impact the long-term sustainability of the economy, in addition to its debt.

This is where government decisions become baffling. Why would a country with a growing economy and high ESG rating intentionally ban pesticides and harm the economy and health of its people? Why would the Biden administration want to eliminate fossil fuels and the 6,000 essential products made from the components, to sabotage the living standards of most citizens?

These decisions simply do not make sense.

Decisions to throw a nation into turmoil actually conflict with the goal of ESG which is to help investors assess the sustainability of a country. A nation in chaos is not sustainable under any circumstances. These arbitrary decisions more closely resemble decisions made by Caligula, the Roman emperor who gave his horse a majestic house and, to prove his absolute power, sought to appoint the horse to the high office of consul, before being assassinated.

A “spell” to protect the environment should cause the bewitched ruler to protect the environment; whereas destroying the means to produce food or energy, the ruler is forcing the nation into chaos, perhaps revolution. Both outcomes would destroy the environment. There must be a more existential reason.  Either it is a drive to form a utopia, or it’s the implementation of the long-held belief of the radical environmental community that humanity is a cancer on the earth, and must go.

Finding utopia has been a dream of philosophers for centuries. Their dreams are structured around a beneficial elite; religious dogma, science, machine rule, communism, or totalitarianism. Perhaps the elite would retry one of these worn-out systems, but it is almost impossible to keep seven billion people down on the farm after they had some exposure to freedom, food, and energy.

If the ruler takes the utopian path, it would have to take the path described by some as the “Great Reset.”  ESG would become a “social credit system to drive ownership and production away from the non-woke or non-compliant.” It is a system in which profitable monopolies and the state rule by controlling big data, artificial intelligence, genetics, nanotechnology, and robotics. Humans would only know what the elite allow them to know. All human thought would be transferred to the elite. The human mind would be in an “inescapable prison. “The major problem with the utopian model is the difficulty of feeding seven billion humans. The elite would have to develop a massive food production system which would be extremely expensive, especially with bans on many foods. It would literally require the enslavement of much of the population. Since the cost of all living in utopia is too high, the elite need an easier plan to implement.

Plan B, is the plan the radical community has written about for a century, the mass reduction of humans. The Left’s Little Red Book on Forming a New Green Republic is a collection of quotations from the radical left that supports this view in their own words.

The famous undersea explorer, Jacque-Yves-Cousteau noted “It’s terrible to have to say this. The world population must be stabilized and to do that we must eliminate 350,000 people per day This is so horrible to contemplate that we shouldn’t even say it. But the general situation in which we are involved is lamentable.”

One of the wishes of Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, President of the World Wildlife Fund International was “If I were reincarnated, I would wish to be returned to earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels.” And, our college-age students are being taught that government must focus on reducing the world population by at least 80%.

Perhaps the most honest discussion of humans being cancer on the earth is presented in a 2019 essay in Culturico, a Swiss Cultural platform that bills itself as fighting misinformation.  Culturico compares humans to cancer cells. The environment is our host and the selfish, harmful actions of humans are destroying the host, just as a tumor would destroy living organisms in our body. The platform goes through the five steps of how tumors spread cancer. The essay ends with the question, “Can we conclude that humans are a cancer? Yes, we are.”

If the environmental community believes its own writings, and there is no reason to doubt its beliefs, its long-term goal is to radically reduce the human population on this planet. So, the next time some ruler, be it president, minister, or chief, performs a baffling act that harms a large number of people for some inexplicable reason, ask yourself what the rulers’ real intentions are. The ruler may be stupid, evil, or power-hungry but the ruler may be following the elite’s playbook of wanting humans gone so the elite can inhabit the earth without us cancer cells threatening their reign of the planet.

 

William L. Kovacs has served as senior vice-president for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, chief counsel to a congressional committee, and a partner in law D.C. law firms, and his book Reform the Kakistocracy is the winner of the 2021 Independent Press Award for Political/Social Change. His second book, The Left’s Little Red Book on Forming a New Green Republic is a collection of quotes from the Left on how to control society by eliminating capitalism, people, and truth.