Examining the Fight Against ESG
Americans are pushing back on ESG while more and more companies are encouraging us to fall in line. How can our stewardship of our money honor God?
From WORLD. Analysis. The impact of economic policies reaches far beyond economics. Consider this: The Wall Street Journal recently ran a story about a letter addressed to the money management giant BlackRock by the attorney general of Arizona and 18 of his counterparts in other states. This comes after a series of actions by state-level financial officers questioning BlackRock and other asset managers and rating agencies for their heavy-handed imposition of ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance investing) on state investment assets and even on the states themselves.
It’s not a coincidence that the world’s richest man and former ESG darling, Elon Musk, called the whole thing a scam. Add pushback from Republican senators, governors, and other hopefuls against the politicization of the world of finance, and these developments amount to a powerful pushback to a movement that had been seen as the inevitable future of investing.
Here’s why that is extremely important. That sense of ESG inevitability was a key source of the movement’s power. The message was, fall in line with the inevitable march of history or get left behind.
When investors questioned the prudence of imposing political criteria on financial decisions, they were assured that it was prudent because this was where the world was going. … So don’t take a risk, do the safe thing, and fall into line now.
But somehow, political reality didn’t get the historical inevitability memo. A populist revolt stubbornly held on, not just to God and guns, but also to fossil fuels, color-blindness, viewpoint diversity, parental rights in education, and the sanctity of life. Facts are stubborn things, but our ruling class now has to learn that stubborn people are also a fact.
Those who stubbornly hold fast to things that the anointed can’t believe are still around are aware, angry, and registered to vote (and have the IDs to prove it). Dozens of attorneys general, treasurers, senators, and governors know it. This means that risk management’s chief selling point has suddenly become the chief objection. ESG is now a focus of controversy and a political risk….
Things have gotten so bad that it’s not just the populist right who are alienated. They’ve alienated some pretty close former allies, such as Tesla Inc….
Are you praying against ESG? Share your own prayers in the comments!
(Excerpt from WORLD. Photo Credit: Getty Images)
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