“If we don’t get to cheat one way or another, it’s not our fault!”
You mean corporations who are avoiding taxes won’t start paying them just because the taxes they’re avoiding have been lowered a bit?
Corporate greed knows no bounds and has no conscience. Only laws that put CEOs in prison will create the change we need.
Yes, but no, but yes.
Shareholders demand of the corporate executives the highest possible returns. There’s a huge cultural issue - and anyone with a pension fund or anything of the sort might want to consider diverting their investments into ethical pathways.
So the issue is with an ignorant (and blind eye turning) society. The CEOs - meh - just a few people. It’s not like they’re the evil masterminds of the world!
Put ‘em in jail for a good long time anyway, and RICO the companies’ capital assets. Shareholder value will take a pounding, and shareholders might start moderating their demands.
You mean letting huge corporations steal money, pillage resources, and not contribute to the country they are siphoning from and draining for their own profit isn’t a good thing? uh oh…because they’ve been paying policiticans lots of money to make and pass laws that superseded countries rights to stop this.
#Another reason to vote for Sanders and NOT Hillary!!!
Yes, but no, but yes.
Shareholders - they’re you and me; anyone with any kind of mortgage / saving / insurance - whatever. Somewhere along the line, a money manager has that cash, and uses it for stocks.
We can’t excuse ourselves. But we can moderate where we put our money.
And penalising the companies helps that process along immensely, so no, but no, but no.
If the consequences of unethical behaviour are that the company takes a bath and the value of the shares plummet, then there is an incentive for shareholders to demand ethical behaviour. There already are ethical investment movements. Their success has been, at best, mixed, in no small part due to the fact that most investors can’t be bothered to investigate past the ROI, and that the most activist investors are the ones pushing for maximum ROI by any means.
If we need to modify investor behaviour as well, then we need incentives, and, for particularly egregious behaviour, a stick works even better than a carrot. If investors start losing their shirts because they couldn’t be bothered to investigate, then they will learn to do so. They will be aided by CEOs who start pushing back on investor demands because they really don’t want to do hard time.
A remedy provided by the U.S. Constitution is to tax corporate malfeasors out of existence. We can permit corporate status on a limited basis and only when the public interest is served.
I’m also partial to @PatRx2’s suggestion to investigate when the law is broken — esp. if it’s routinely broken by entitled rich kids who should know better than to game the system against working families.
Shareholders demand of the corporate executives the highest possible returns.
Shareholders are a convenient boogieman for management to trot out to justify their own unpopular decisions. The best shareholders can hope to do is to elect a management-unfriendly board at the next AGM, which in itself is incredibly difficult to do without an activist investor leading a concerted charge.
Indeed, unless you are at the scale of Buffet or Icahn, the vast majority of stock trading is more like betting on horses - try to pick a winner for the next race, rather than getting involved with breeding, training, and so on, not in the least because actual involvement has been specifically made difficult.
Just google “ethical investing”.
Ever notice how doctorow will mispell or otherwise use incorrectly use one word in his posts? I find it really charming. It’s how I can instantly recognize his writing. Anyone know if this is on purpose?
“No duh” is more appropriate, imo.
To distract the dissapoint?
Out with it.
Unless through shareholder activism, which is, unfortunately, still rare in the field, SRI does not influence management behaviour - it merely looks for companies whose goals and management practices it agrees with. Given that an investor’s money only actually goes to the company in question during the purchase of newly issued shares (all other share purchases are from another investor), SRI does not offer much more than moral support to socially responsible companies. CSR advocacy, both from a consumer and a political/regulatory standpoint does much more to encourage responsible corporate behaviour than does SRI.
While it’s true no one normally invests in a company to lose money, if you own even one share of a company, you get to vote annually on some basic issues.
This is all done digitally now, so you get presented with a list of board members, and you vote “For”, “Against”, or Abstain". Right next to those choices, you see the board’s recommendation (obviously, they are “For” keeping their jobs).
You always vote on executive compensation packages (board, of course, is “For”, though I always vote “Against”).
You always vote to using an accounting company.
Near the bottom, you’ll see shareholders resolutions (requested votes by shareholders).
Every year I see:
Tie executive compensation to performance (Board is Against)
Adhere to the Holy Land Principles (Board is Against)
Ban use of agricultural antibiotics (Board is Against)
Develop plans to increase sustainable energy use (Board is Against)
There are many more…
The whole drawn out point is, the regular shareholders are a large enough group to try to shift the sociopathic corporate culture by bringing things to vote, but they’re up against the board of directors (many of whom serve on multiple boards of multiple companies), majority shareholders (CEOs and billionaires), and general apathy (if you don’t vote, your votes are tallied per the board’s recommendation).
General apathy is the issue
Taxes in America just seem to keep going down on this race to the bottom logic, but then when Romney ran for president we found out that in most years he simply didn’t pay any taxes at all. That’s the real Laffer curve. If you buy into the logic that taxes are “theft” or even that they are other-things-being-equal bad then the wealthy just stop paying taxes because there isn’t the political will to take them on. The solution isn’t lower taxes, it’s higher taxes.