In The Wall Street Journal, Mayor Harry Brower Jr., an Alaskan Native, calls out Goldman Sachs for the firm’s recent PR announcement that it will no longer finance new oil projects in the Arctic. Brower pierces right through Goldman’s argument that it is helping indigenous peoples with “stakeholder engagement.” Brower is the mayor of the North Slope borough, a massive land area populated by many Alaskan natives, including Mr. Brower.
Goldman, like BlackRock, is virtue signaling to its favored constituency, wealthy investors living in the elite enclaves of New York and San Francisco. Neither company seems too worried about typical investors or those stakeholders they claim to champion. Brower explains:
I’m proud that Prudhoe Bay has produced 18 billion barrels of oil since 1977, contributing billions of dollars to state coffers and funding development in Native Alaskan communities. Today I see fellow residents becoming doctors, lawyers, teachers and engineers. Some, like me, have become whaling captains.
We have a long way to go to enjoy the amenities that most people in the “lower 48” take for granted. But thanks to oil production, our children are no longer forced to live hundreds of miles away from their families simply to attend high school. We are able to eat our native foods, practice our native ceremonies and speak in our native tongues. Many of us now live near a cutting-edge medical clinic. We can heat our homes, turn on our lights with a flick of the switch, and in some cases we even have indoor plumbing. We are no longer one whaling hunt from starvation.
We are able to have all this because we treasure and protect our land and wildlife—the resources that executives and environmental groups in cities thousands of miles away claim to care about. The way we see it, caring about the land and wildlife should also mean caring about the indigenous people who inhabit the land—and that means knowing us, which Goldman Sachs hasn’t bothered to do. We aren’t hungry for oil, we are hungry for progress and understanding from those on the East Coast and beyond. We don’t need your protection or judgment. We need your respect. We need to be treated like fellow Americans.
Goldman Sachs says its decision to forgo participation in Arctic drilling projects was born of a desire to fight climate change. But given its business interests in oil-producing states around the world, including involvement in last year’s initial public offering of Saudi Arabia’s oil company, Aramco, that can’t be true.
Goldman executives are simply looking to curry political favor with powerful green interests. The cost of Goldman Sachs’s hypocrisy will be paid by my people, who may soon be on a path back to the deprivation and hardship our ancestors worked so hard to leave behind.
Read more here.
Originally posted on Your Survival Guy.