Late last year, Harrington Investments President John Harrington filed shareholder resolutions at banks that received billions of taxpayer dollars under the Trouble Asset Relief Program. Congress bailed out the banks because they are essential to the stability of our economy, so the resolutions ask for board committees to oversee US Economic Security. Ironically, Citigroup and Bank of America have petitioned the SEC for permission to ignore the resolutions.Read the show transcript
Each January for the past several years, Bill has surveyed the top Corporate Social Responsibility news stories of the past year for CSRwire.com, where he is a contributing writer. Here’s this year’s edition:
A “green” recovery from economic and environmental meltdowns; the advent of Shareholder Activism 2.0 with binding resolutions at TARP banks; CSR adopts Web 2.0 strategies for sustainability reporting; is Wal-Mart really green?; and much more…
The economic meltdown of 2008 mirrors the simultaneous environmental meltdown fueled by the climate calamity – both share common roots, and many in the Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility (CSR) community believe they share a common salvation.Read the show transcript
We woke up this week to find Lehman Brothers, the venerable bank founded over a century ago, belly up, and Merrill Lynch merged with Bank of America in a shot-gun wedding. And late last night, the Fed announced it had taken control the mega-insurer American International Group, or AIG. As the subprime meltdown continues, it feels as if the market is crumbling around us. What caused this crisis, and where do we go from here? To address these questions, we speak with three experts. Economics Professor Jim Crotty of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst explains the underpinnings of the problem. Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility Executive Director Laura Berry talks about how the faith-based lens exposed problems in predatory subprime lending a decade-and-a-half ago. And independent economic analyst Chris Martenson gazes into his crystal ball to project the likely trajectory of the credit crisis.
In place of CWR headlines, this week we hear extended comments from Steve Adamske, communications director of the House Financial Services Committee, about Chair Barney Frank’s plan to create a new federal entity to oversee government management of companies collapsing due to mortgage debt.
Is there too much or too little shareholder activism and democracy? The Securities and Exchange Commission, in recent roundtable discussions, called for reexamination of the rights of shareholders to place shareholder resolutions on the corporate ballot. Attorney Sanford Lewis and Journalist Bill Baue, Corporate Watchdog Radio cohosts, discuss the array of ideas and pressures at work on the SEC. We hear excerpts of comments from David Hirschmann of the US Chamber of Commerce, Damon Silvers of the AFL-CIO, Bill Mostyn, Bank of America, and Delaware Judge Leo Strine. The future of shareholder democracy may hang in the balance.
Article by cohost Bill Baue on the SEC Roundtables