Category Archive 'The Delusions of the Elite'

23 Oct 2020

Uh, Oh! Here Comes Something Really Stupid

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Peter Salovey, God help us! President of Yale. My dog would do a better job.

When Yale President Peter Salovey intends to make a grandiose concession to the small minority of radical student demonstrators, he first protects himself from reproach by forming an “expert committee” to develop applicable principles to be applied to the issue in question.

Salovey’s cherry-picked committee, of course, will be composed of ultra-liberal profs specifically ideologically-committed to the intended radical course Salovey intends to pursue.

A few years ago, the goal was renaming Calhoun College. This time, Yale is going to bow to student activist demands to use its investment program to make political statements stigmatizing fossil fuels.

Yesterday, Yale issued the following pretentious claptrap initiating the whole ridiculous sham process.

Yale University has formed an expert committee to guide the university as it evaluates its investment policies in relation to companies producing fossil fuels, President Peter Salovey announced Oct. 22.

The new committee is charged with recommending a set of principles that will inform Yale’s Corporation Committee on Investor Responsibility (CCIR) as it applies the university’s ethical investment policy to fossil fuel companies. The CCIR works in consultation with the Advisory Committee on Investor Responsibility (ACIR).

The new committee, which will collect input from the Yale community, will begin its work immediately and will deliver the report during the Spring 2021 semester.

After a Feb. 20, 2019, Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Senate meeting on fossil fuels divestment, the FAS Senate proposed that the president appoint a committee to reexamine ethical investing at Yale with respect to companies that extract or produce fossil fuels.

In Salovey’s charge to the Committee on Fossil Fuel Investment Principles (CFFIP), he noted that the changes necessary to avert an irreversible climate catastrophe “cannot be implemented overnight, and depend not only on scientific advancement but also [on] significant political, economic, and personal contributions.”

“Nonetheless,” he continued, “climate change poses an existential threat to life on our planet, and we have a responsibility to examine whether our investment policies are appropriate or need to be modified with respect to this challenge.”

In 2014, Yale, acting in its role as an institutional investor, asked its external investment managers to incorporate the full cost of carbon emissions in investment decisions. At the time, managers were told to avoid investing in companies that disregard the social and financial costs of climate change and that fail to take economically reasonable steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Without diminishing the significance of these [past] efforts, I am fully aware that the alarm bells are growing louder, as scientific projections worsen, natural disasters intensify, and governments are slow to develop and implement effective policies,” Salovey wrote in the committee charge.

Salovey said the new committee will produce a “concrete framework” for applying to fossil fuel producers the guidelines set forth in “The Ethical Investor,” Yale professor John Simon’s highly influential 1972 book. That book established general criteria for universities to consider factors beyond economic return when making investment decisions and exercising rights as a shareholder.

The committee will identify the activities, behaviors, and/or characteristics of fossil fuel producers that would constitute “social injury” of such grave character that divestment could be warranted.

“The formation of this committee demonstrates significant concern at the highest level of the university about climate change and a commitment to act proactively,” said CFFIP chair Jonathan R. Macey, the Sam Harris Professor of Corporate Law, Corporate Finance and Securities Law at Yale Law School. “Our principles for making decisions related to divestment should reflect changing circumstances and the lack of decisive action by entities such as governments that we might normally rely upon for coordinating the nation’s response to existential threats like global warming.”

The committee will include experts drawn from the Yale faculty, and may also consult with other experts in relevant fields. Its members, in addition to Macey, are Ruth Blake, professor of Earth & Planetary Sciences, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences; Benjamin Polak, William C. Brainard Professor of Economics, School of Management, Department of Economics; Mary-Louise Timmermans, professor and director of undergraduate studies, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences; Xinchen Wang ’09, director, Yale Investments Office.

The committee additionally will seek input from the wider Yale community.

RTWT

Talk about the culture rotting from the top down.


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