LTP News Sharing:

In 1992, Texas’s then-Governor Ann Richards famously said, “You can put lipstick on a hog and call it Monique, but it’s still a pig.” We could well apply her words to BlackRock CEO/Chairman/Emperor Larry Fink, who thinks renaming ESG “conscientious capitalism” will fool his critics.

Scott Shepard

Scott Shepard

In a RealClearMarkets commentary, Free Enterprise Project Director Scott Shepard writes about Fink:

[H]e’s no longer going to use the term ESG. He’s switched, he says, to the phrase “conscientious capitalism.” After all, none of us dirty peasants can question anything he says he is doing conscientiously, can we?

Well, probably we can. You see, Larry doesn’t have any intention of changing any of his behavior at all….

So why is Emperor Fink bothering to rebrand?

Part of the reason that Fink is trying a new phrase is because the public and state officials and regulators have come to understand what ESG really means on the ground, and have finally begun to respond properly….

[H]e and other BlackRock executives have bragged that the company uses all the assets entrusted with the company (not just the ESG-labeled ones) to push the twin ESG goals of political decarbonization and equity-based discrimination.

This change in terminology, then, is an attempt to get Fink out of a bind. It’s straightforward material misinformation to offer regular and ESG-labeled investment options, but then to use the assets from both categories to push ESG goals. Now Fink’s instead going to call those same goals “conscientious capitalism” targets, hoping that the change in terminology will solve his problem.

It won’t, of course. He’s already admitted that the only thing that’s changed is the term, not his intended behavior. And so this new phraseology only adds an extra layer of intentional misrepresentation, and eventual peril.

Read Scott’s entire commentary here.

Author: The National Center