The ESG Myth

The ESG paradox

Business has been attacked as greedy, but at its core the profit motive is how we flourish. It was business — and especially large scale industrial businesses — that lifted humanity out of eons of poverty, and extended lifespans from 30 to 80. And what fueled business was each investor’s, executive’s, and worker’s greed — their desire for a better life.

The ESG Credo

ESG isn’t only used to guide investment decisions. It is also used to pressure companies to act the way ESG activists think they should.

The ESG ideology

The goal of ESG investing, supporters say, is to measure and promote sustainability. “ESG investing is sometimes referred to as sustainable investing,” observes the investment website Investopedia.[14]

An egalitarian regulatory state

The problem with ESG is not that private individuals want to invest in companies they believe are moral (though they are wrong to treat a high ESG rating as evidence for a company’s morality). The problem is that major institutions with lots of financial power but little financial skin in the game are, in the name of ESG, strong-arming companies to act against the interests of shareholders.

A New Direction

The egalitarian critique of capitalism and business was fatally flawed from the start. Capitalism is not unsustainable. The idea that it has created riches today at the expense of tomorrow is a lie.

References

[1] https://www.forbes.com/sites/georgkell/2018/07/11/the-remarkable-rise-of-esg/#62d734616951

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