April 26, 2023
BlackRock’s Larry Fink wrote about stakeholder capitalism in his annual letter to whoever will read it. Still, I suspect Klaus Schwab, the founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, greatly influenced him. Schwab discussed the WEF principles in his 2021 book, “Stakeholder Capitalism: A Global Economy that Works for Progress, People and Planet,” but had been developing this topic for decades as a university professor teaching courses on management.
Schwab’s views expanded over time from corporation-centric interests to include government, society, and publishing media, all of which he has spent a lifetime organizing as a tool for elitist control. That, in a nutshell, sums up my views on the World Economic Forum.
At the heart of the matter lies the rights of society versus those of the individual.
I, for one, cannot separate the stakeholders of a corporation from its investors, lenders, employees, suppliers, and immediate families. They are the bedrock of capitalism, which is the limit I place on the term capitalism. Any other so-called stakeholder has interests that change, like the wind. Governments come and go. Systems of government frequently change. Today, media is little more than marketing, and whoever owns the media controls the general thinking of its audience. As the interests of governments and the media converge, their combined impact on society meshes.
I will not belabor the point because people know me as a free markets patriot who believes in corporate capitalism and detests the intervention by control-minded groups and individuals associated with Klaus Schwab and Larry Fink. But when these people say Climate Change and Global Warming, Build Back Better, ESG, and the rest of their agenda is capitalism; I say they are liars. When they say their agenda is not political or ‘woke,’ I say they are liars.
Every member of a corporate board of directors and its c-suite executive team must look themselves in the mirror daily and ask the question, “With the authority bestowed on me, am I responsible to anybody other than my corporation’s investors, lenders, employees, and suppliers, and their immediate families?” If you believe otherwise, you have crossed the line to working for social evangelists who are not paying you to manage the corporation, and it’s time for you to resign.