The days of “an honest wage for a day’s work” are long gone. In addition to having to work harder while inflation eats up their pay increases, employees are now forced to monitor their behavior and even their own thoughts in order to keep their jobs.
Freedom of speech and expression are gone -- even when you’re not at work. Corporations are caving to pressure from liberal groups and government bureaucracies and establishing policies to silence all forms of conservative thought and speech in order to advance the liberal agenda.
Worst of all, as consumers, we’re supporting these companies without even knowing it.
It’s the same for stockholders. They invest their savings -- or their pensions are invested for them -- with companies that no longer have their financial interests at heart.
But corporations are bound by law to consider corporate profits their top priority. The personal views of the CEO, board members, or other corporate officers are required to be ignored if they are not focused on getting the best return on the shareholders’ investment.
Liberals have found a way to coerce corporate America into complying with their woke agenda by starving them of capital investment if they don’t submit. This threat to free speech and American conservative values is the “ESG” movement. It stands for “Environmental Social Governance” and puts forth a series of standards that require companies to adhere to certain principles of managing their businesses.
Environmental issues focus on adherence to climate-change policies, clean energy, and pollution control. This sounds great in theory, but the standards they set are decided behind closed doors and often use false or unverified data. One major target is fossil fuels. Any company that produces energy from fossil fuels, or uses coal, oil, or natural gas, is immediately marked as noncompliant with ESG policies and their ability to generate capital for growth, or even into research into how to make their products less harmful to the environment, is shut off. Any company that deals with a noncompliant company becomes noncompliant, too.
The social aspects of ESG involve a company’s relationships with their shareholders, “stakeholders” and employees. Stakeholders are defined as “a person or group with an interest in an enterprise” which means anyone who deals with the company, or is impacted by the company -- pretty much anyone.
“Socially Responsible Investing” (SRI) also sounds great, but demands adherence to the latest fashions in promoting diversity, inclusion, social justice and opposing all forms of discrimination, including race and gender. (Unless the discrimination is against a “privileged” class.) Since these are arbitrary rules, there’s no limit to how far the ESG proponents will go. Will they demand that every board of directors have at least two homosexuals, three African-Americans, one transsexual and five women? What if there are no qualified candidates with these characteristics? Will a less-skilled individual be hired as CEO or a senior manager simply because of their sexual orientation or skin color?
As company policies are reviewed under ESG guidelines, will they be required to force every employee to get vaccine injections -- even if they are proven to be ineffective or dangerous? Since when did corporations have the right to mandate medical decisions for their employees?
Will companies be required to monitor employee communications at work in a quest to discover those who don’t hold the “proper” personal or political views? How about monitoring statements they may make online in social media or even in private emails? Firing someone for a post or a tweet is all too common these days.
Most Americans won’t remember the Rainbow/PUSH coalition headed by Reverend Jesse Jackson. They were (in)famous for setting up protests in front of large corporate offices and demanding to see the company president. Jackson would explain that if they weren’t given a sizeable “donation” to “support the black community” the pickets would remain and their “grievances” would be aired to every news outlet they could find.
In 2001 a Jackson supporter, Harold Doley, Jr, withdrew his support for Jackson, “His effectiveness is in shaking down corporate America. His income for his operations, since he’s come to Wall Street, has gone from $695,000 to over $17 million last year. There is no dot-com stock I’m aware of that has had that kind of success.”
Publicity about these kinds of political pressure deals led to the demise of Jackson’s efforts and may be part of the reason that Americans intuitively feel that corporations should stick to making money for their shareholders and not take sides in politics or social issues.
A May, 2002, Rasmussen poll found that “45% of voters favor a law that would protect American companies from having to comply with a European ESG scoring system; Only 29% oppose. And 41% of voters favor law that would stop publicly traded banks, financial institutions and investment managers from generating ESG scores for individuals and businesses who have not explicitly asked to be rated; only 32% oppose.”
ESG has become increasingly influential in recent years, evolving into a $35 trillion industry, with that much in global assets being invested using ESG principles. But the extra costs of ESG compliance often mean the companies are less profitable investments.
For a small business, losing access to your credit-card processor, bank loans, or email providers could be fatal. In the face of this kind of pressure, it’s just easier (and much less expensive) to give in to the demands, no matter how much it may negatively impact your company’s bottom line or be unfair to your employees.
As consumers, most Americans don’t know the views of the companies they’re investing in, or buying from.
Enter the 1792 Exchange.
“In 2021, a group of business leaders and families formed 1792 Exchange to preserve freedom of religion, speech, and enterprise. 1792 Exchange staff partner with leaders and organizations countering “woke capitalism” and with organizations vulnerable to corporations using their size and influence to stifle speech or deny services.
1792 is when the first American stock exchange was founded -- as an apolitical body.
The 1792 Exchange has compiled a list of over a thousand companies and ranked them according to their likelihood of denying services, contracts, or investments based on a client’s views or beliefs.
You can go to the website and check on the various companies you deal with to learn their score.
They share stories of people and companies that have been harmed by ESG rules. You can also report if you or your business has been harmed by an ESG company based on your political beliefs or personal views.
Conservative lawmakers in various states, and even in Washington, D.C. are fighting back against ESG and its effect on American businesses and freedom of speech. Unfortunately, we can’t rely on our conservative representatives to end ESG rules any time soon.
The good news is that Americans spend over 23 trillion dollars a year, and a little bit of research on where you buy your cars, who you bank with, products you buy at the store, or which cell phone service you use, will allow you to shift your purchases from “woke” to “free.”
Talk is cheap, action is priceless.
Jack Gleason is a conservative political writer. For reprint requests on other websites, inside information for important issues, article requests or comments contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org Recent articles… https://www.americanthinker.com/author/jackgleason/ and https://canadafreepress.com/members/1/JackGleason/1249
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