From earlier this week, a press release from Louisiana Treasurer John Schroder, who’s picking up the standard and using his position to fight the global elite Great Reset scheme on behalf of the people of Louisiana. At issue is “ESG” investment principles being instituted by woke financial institutions, a movement which in every significant way is actually fascist, in the sense that it attempts to enslave the capitalist system for political purposes. That was literally the project of the Italian Fascist party under Benito Mussolini, and now it’s back under another name.
Schroder isn’t playing that game, and good for him.
Louisiana State Treasurer John M. Schroder announced in a letter to BlackRock, Inc. investment firm CEO Larry Fink that he will divest all Treasury funds from BlackRock. He reported that $560M has been removed to date and that a total of $794M will be removed by year’s end.
“This divestment is necessary to protect Louisiana from mandates BlackRock has called for that would cripple our critical energy sector,” said Schroder, who serves as incoming chair of the national State Financial Officers Foundation. “I refuse to spend a penny of Treasury funds with a company that will take food off tables, money out of pockets and jobs away from hardworking Louisianans.”
Schroder said his action is in response to recent reports that BlackRock has urged companies to embrace “net zero” ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) investment strategies that would harm our fossil fuel industry, a vital part of our state’s economy. His letter comes following a meeting with BlackRock representatives, whose statements he said directly contradicted public messaging by Fink, including letters to shareholders and other BlackRock corporate communications materials.
In the letter, Schroder points to an overarching fiduciary duty to investors that BlackRock fails to meet. “ESG investing violates Louisiana law on the fiduciary duties which require a sole focus on financial returns for the beneficiaries of state funds,” he wrote. “A focus on political or social goals or placing those goals above the duty to enhance investors’ returns is unacceptable under Louisiana law.”
Schroder acknowledged that BlackRock continues to invest in oil and gas companies. However, he concluded that it does not counterbalance the investment firm’s stated intent to force those companies—and all others—to adopt ESG-friendly practices, regardless of whether they were in the best interest of their clients.
Treasurer Schroder added that ESG investing is a threat to our country’s founding principles because it allows companies like BlackRock to bypass the democratic process and push political agendas without having to go through the ballot box.
“They are pushing their agendas contrary to the best interests of the people whose money they are using!” said Schroder. “This is a complete disregard for personal liberty.”
Schroder isn’t the first state treasurer to divest from BlackRock. West Virginia’s Riley Moore had done the same at the beginning of the year over BlackRock’s claim they were embracing carbon-zero idiocy as part of their investment strategy. When Moore did, Louisiana’s Attorney General Jeff Landry asked Schroder to do the same. Landry then launched an investigation in August which led to his finding that BlackRock might have broken its fiduciary duty to its Louisiana investors, and as a result of that investigation Landry issued legal guidance stating that BlackRock, Vanguard and State Street Advisors have all violated that duty.
So that’s the back story here. And it’s why Landry did a little touchdown dance over Schroder’s move against BlackRock…
“I am grateful the Treasurer heeded my call to push back against BlackRock who seems to prioritize their own agenda on climate change, politics, and other self-interests over their client’s best interests. I hope the Treasurer will continue to stand with me in ensuring entities doing business with our State and her people follow the law and prioritize Louisiana’s people and industry.”
It’s a little catty, but they’re running for governor against each other and that’s to be expected. Besides, Landry would naturally be a little sore over Schroder’s abandonment of the effort at the State Bond Commission to rein in New Orleans’ lawless politicians who are openly defying the state’s abortion ban.
What’s more important here is that Landry and Schroder are working together to do something which needs to be done.
Will it be appreciated? Well, not by these clowns…
“Companies like BlackRock incorporate climate and social risk factors into their investment decisions because it makes good business sense — and because it is the right thing to do. Louisiana is being run by cowards who put their fear before families. Our state treasurer is simply following the lead of other Republican states in veering us off the necessary path to a just transition. This is a slap in the face to environmental justice communities and the frontline leaders fighting for clean air and clean water across this state,” said Roishetta Ozane, Southwest Louisiana Organizing Director with Healthy Gulf.
“What a sad state of affairs it is to consider loving your neighbor as being woke. The political backlash over BlackRock including the community and environmental impacts in its investment decisions demonstrate just how deep the polluter industry’s hooks are — and who these politicians really work for. ESG won’t destroy Louisiana’s economy; politicians delaying economic diversification and the rising seas will,” said James Hiatt, Southwest Louisiana Coordinator for the Louisiana Bucket Brigade.
“This move by Louisiana’s state treasurer to stop doing business with a financial institution over its sustainable investment policies is just the latest flavor of climate denial cooked up by right-wing politicians and their fossil fuel industry donors. It’s part of a broader attempt to prevent free-market businesses like BlackRock from addressing urgent climate-related financial risks that are affecting our state, preventing us from adapting the way Louisianians have done for centuries” said Jessi Parfait, Campaign Representative in the Sierra Club’s Beyond Dirty Fuels campaign. “In reality, financial firms like BlackRock continue to be major financiers of fossil fuels, and aren’t doing nearly enough to address the destructive impacts of their investments. At the end of the day, when states cut off financial firms to score political points, the real impact is felt by the taxpayers and residents who have to bear the costs of these theatrics.”
And who do you think funds them? Yeah, don’t worry about that – everybody knows.