“The recent corporate resignations from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have played in the media as a case of enlightened corporate stewardship vs. blinkered old businesses. But there’s far more to this story—not least the way that Apple and Nike are putting green political correctness above the long-term interests of their own shareholders,” The Wall Street Journal writes in a editorial.
“The Chamber needs ‘a more progressive stance on this issue’ of climate change, declared Apple Vice President Catherine Novelli in a letter of resignation from the business lobby on October 5. Added Nike, announcing its resignation on September 30 from the Chamber board though retaining its membership: ‘US businesses must advocate for aggressive climate change,'” WSJ writes. “Both decisions were ostentatiously leaked to the media.”
“The first point to understand is the role of Al Gore, who is a member of the Apple board and perhaps the leading supporter of President Obama’s cap-and-tax anticarbon legislation. Mr. Gore has also invested in renewable energy technologies that could make him even richer than he already is if new climate rules make renewables more competitive with carbon energy,” WSJ writes. “Meanwhile, Apple’s Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook happens to sit on the board of . . . Nike.”
WSJ writes, “Both companies may figure they can afford a U.S. carbon tax because most of their manufacturing is done outside the U.S… Green virtue is easier when someone else is paying for it. Yet even this self-interested calculation is likely to be short-sighted for both companies.”
“A carbon tariff is already part of the House cap-and-trade bill and is gaining currency among Congressional protectionists, most recently Senator Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.),” WSJ writes. “As companies that import nearly all of their products, Apple and Nike would be especially vulnerable. We wonder if Messrs. Cook and Parker thought through any of this before committing their employees and investors to this crusade.”
Full editorial here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Citymark” for the heads up.]