Texas Boycott Boycott Law Is The Ultimate Free Market Solution


As often happens when legacy media attempts to represent conservative beliefs, the Dallas Morning News’ searing version of Texas’ new energy discrimination law — claiming it “betrays free market principles” — predictably misses the mark. target.

Senate Bill 13, signed into law by Governor Abbott last year, is the ultimate free-market solution to the dangerous precedent set on Wall Street. Financial firms are trying to bully responsible US energy producers in the name of the Paris Agreement, a foreign document that doesn’t even have the force of law. And they don’t just limit our energy resources – they jeopardize our tax dollars in the process.

Here’s how it works: Under the new law, financial institutions that boycott, divest from, or sanction the fossil fuel industry are prohibited from doing business with the state of Texas. Each company is free to manage its operations as it sees fit. They can freely engage in so-called sustainability initiatives, offer “green” investment funds, and make any perceived environmental or climate commitments of their choosing. But if they willfully pursue anti-energy investment practices that harm our state, we simply won’t reward them with control of Texas taxpayers’ money.

Senate Bill 13 is the pro-corporate, pro-taxpayer, pension-protecting approach to Wall Street’s senseless energy discrimination campaign.

It’s not a new concept, and Texas isn’t alone in worrying that banks and investment managers are prioritizing political agendas above their legal fiduciary duty. The legislation was modeled on existing laws prohibiting state contracts with companies that boycott Israel. Dozens of other states are considering legislation similar to SB 13 or have already withdrawn funds from companies like BlackRock that publicly endorse the anti-fossil, climate alarmist narrative.

Ultimately, however, SB 13 is not about fossil fuels. It’s true that oil and natural gas are a key part of Texas’ thriving economy and labor market – and it’s worth noting that taxes on the energy industry make up more than 10% of the Texas budget. State. Energy is essential to everything we do – every transaction we make, every item we own, every societal structure we depend on for our high quality of life.

But more importantly, SB 13 protects Texans’ taxpayer dollars from politically influenced mismanagement.

Texas state and local retirement systems include more than $300 billion in assets — money that must be managed with the utmost care and respect. Our public servants – that is, teachers, peace officers, firefighters, paramedics, corrections officers, state and local employees – will one day depend on their pensions to survive. They deserve to know that their money is well managed, and Texan taxpayers should never question whether their investment in these funds is being politically exploited.

It would be hard to defend the “Texan model” of freedom, limited government, and low taxes without protecting those taxes from the waste and abuse of corporations colluding to advance an agenda.

What most SB 13 reporting misses is that the anti-fossil fuel investing movement known in financial circles as environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing is not just going to against the spirit of Texas. It likely violates several long-standing consumer protection laws.

Federal law explicitly prohibits corporate conspiracies to restrain competition. That’s exactly what Wall Street is doing – going far beyond political posturing to create a cartel, agree to de-bank and discriminate against the energy industry. Their efforts to channel investments into funds labeled “green,” without proof that these funds will provide the same return on investment, run counter to fiduciary duties. Their clients should know that their financial interests are the number one priority, but within the framework of ESG investing, the climate alarmist agenda is given equal or greater importance. It’s an affront to the free market, and Texas is proud to lead a strong and growing coalition of fighting back states.

It’s unfortunate that the media and left-leaning organizations are obsessed with SB 13’s focus on fossil fuels, because Texas’ commitment to the free market means the same provisions could and should be extended to any industry. targeted by the ruthless mob of cancel culture. The system of capitalism that has made our state and our nation so great depends on it – and so do the taxpayers of Texas.

Maybe SB 13 should have been called the Texas Taxpayer Protection Act.

The Honorable Jason Isaac is director of Life:Powered, a national initiative of the Texas Public Policy Foundation aimed at increasing the energy IQ of the United States. He previously served four terms in the Texas House of Representatives.

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