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Gates Foundation: “Evil Valuations” Too Complex

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has been responding to criticism that some of the companies it invests in, do things that might be considered evil by some people. At first, they had responded that they would determing which companies had a bad record, and not invest in them, but they have since backed off. The reason: They say it would be too hard to determine which companies are evil, and that any such determination is largely subjective.

They’re right, especially when they say this:

“Many of the companies mentioned in the Los Angeles Times articles, such as Ford, Kraft, Fannie Mae, Nestle, and General Electric, do a lot of work that some people like, as well as work that some people do not like. Some activities might even be viewed positively by some people and negatively by others.”

Absolutely! While the Foundation says it will not invest in those that are centrally devoted to something harmful, like smoking, who can determine whether medical research by one division of a company should be weighed against environment effects by a completely different division? If a company is doing something wrong, the government of this country should be putting their executives in jail; it is not the job of private citizens trying to do charity, especially since such determinations would take money and manpower away from where it counts.
(via Slashdot)

January 14th, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | General, Corporate | one comment
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1 Comment »

  1. Absolutely ridiculous!

    They can invest in whoever they please, the cheek of people to even question them is beyond belief.

    Comment by azz0r | 1/14/2007

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