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KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) Katharine O'Moore Klopf

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Socially Responsible Investing

The spouster and I are dismayed to learn that Fidelity, through which we have traditional IRAs, is helping to fund genocide in Darfur mainly by being the largest investor on the New York Stock Exchange in PetroChina, the number-one oil producer in China (2006 "social responsibility report" here—13.1 megabytes that make no mention of Sudan or Darfur). The Chinese company funds the Sudanese government's oil exploration, and that government's military is killing the residents of Darfur.

We want to move our IRAs as soon as humanly possible. We're looking at Pax World Funds. Here is how Pax World screens its funds. We've ordered prospectuses, but I'd also be interested in hearing from you if you've dealt with Pax World.


Unknown said...

We're looking at Pax World, too, by which I mean as soon as Pure Luck gets home from his seemingly never-ending job.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Oh, good to hear that you're thinking of Pax World too, Songbird.

I feel for you about having a spouse who's working a lot. Ed is my best friend and sweetheart, and I really miss him when he works overtime. Even if we're doing different projects around the house on a weekend, I like that he's accessible for conversation and snuggling and not far away at work. I'm saying speed-up-time prayers for you so that it will seem but a few moments till Pure Luck is back home with you.

Anonymous said...

Instead of investing in these companies, I strongly recommend that everyone consider real estate as an investment. You control your own destiny and these investments do qualify for IRA's so you can reap even more tax benefits.

For help with investing and managing rental property take a look at www.EzLandlording.com

I hope this helps.
Phil G

BrookfieldCT said...

We are in a hurry. The hurry is: we humans are in the process of destroying our planet. Global warming is the single most significant environmental crisis the world community has ever seen. The 2007 G8 Summit in Germany will focus on the reversal of global warming. President Bush, of course opposes this proposal. Like his strategy in the Middle East, he has a better idea, and he wants to convince the world of something they already know is untrue. This time it’s not that there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, but that global warming is not that dire an issue.

Our Nero-like President fiddles, but we cannot allow our Rome to go up in flames. This isn’t a city’s destruction we speak of. It is the end of all of us, of history, of every thought and feeling humankind ever produced. Our present federal government is not going to do anything about this crisis.

Our company, Connecticut Real Estate and Construction wishes to do something about it, because Connecticut needs workforce housing in significant number for very important reasons. Suburban sprawl is killing the environment. When we continually clear off two acres and more per household to put up large houses, we cut down trees which produce oxygen, we deplete the filtering system for our water, and we make houses which leave a carbon footprint which further opens a hole in the ozone. If we instead build multiple units together and build them with solar photovoltaic cell panels and with geothermal heating and cooling, we leave virtually no carbon footprint, we leave sufficient greenery to filter water run-off, and we provide our workforce with housing that allows them to stay in the state and not flee to the South and Southwest as has been the recent trend. As a result, those businesses (and their tax revenues) which require those workers need not flee with the workforce, a trend we have seen throughout the Northeast region of the country.

Additionally, we will build elderly housing. The Boomer Generation is aging. They are retiring at record rates and require specific housing that does not exist in sufficient number. We will build it. We will build commercial buildings and office space to go along with the elderly and workforce housing. We need cooperation from local governments to achieve our goals, and we need that cooperation quickly. As we move forward, we will build with town tax rolls in mind. We are aware that the workforce housing will require significant services and expenses, most notably educational expenses. This is why mixing the elderly housing with the workforce balances the ledger, for the elderly pay taxes without sending children to schools. Further, the commercial and office buildings will bring in significant tax revenues without pulling out revenues from the local municipality. This formula is referred to as “Smart Growth” and is to be part of our plans.

While proposing “caution” and “care” is never foolhardy advice, studies on these issues have already been done and “smart growth” is necessary throughout the state. We cannot wait. The cost is too dear for all of us to sit idly by and fiddle away time as the planet goes up in flames.


Miles J. Shapiro, Partner
Connecticut Real Estate and Construction
VP Marketing and Commercial Real Estate

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