Over the past decade, and especially since 2020, billionnaires, mega-corporations, and the government have, with growing intensity and volume and in the same words and images, called on civil society, business, and the public to end systemic racism. There is something curious about the fact that these groups – which have long histories of exploiting minorities and (directly or indirectly) encouraging bigotry and strife for purposes of profit – have suddenly become vocal promoters of racial equity, dismantling systemic racism, and diversity, equity, and inclusion norms, etc.
We can begin to unravel this paradox of public good will by considering the organizational commitments to racial equity published by JUST Capital. A non-profit organization founded by “a group of concerned people from the world of business, finance, and civil society – including Paul Tudor Jones II, Deepak Chopra, Rinaldo Brutoco, Arianna Huffington, Paul Scialla, Alan Fleischmann, and others,” JUST Capital is an organization that claims to promote a “just economy” and “true prosperity for all” by measuring and ranking corporate performance on a set of common metrics related to those goals. Investors who are concerned with racial equity, for example, may use JUST Capital’s rankings to determine which companies are most committed to this moral norm and most deserving of investment capital.
By examining JUST Capital’s statements about what goes into tracking racial equity, we start to see that one social justice issue is used to justify the imposition of a much larger program of human capital scoring.
“We have listed below our internal commitments to racial equity and how they deepen our mission’s impact.
As an organization, we commit to:
Audit the demographic composition of our workforce – including race, ethnicity, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, and gender identity, among other intersectional dimensions – on an annual basis, and share results publicly.
To track and report on the distribution of employees across standard pay bands – by race, ethnicity, gender, and job category – on an annual basis, and share results publicly, including whether any adjustments have been made.
Develop fair, equitable, and inclusive hiring and promotion processes by conducting a diversity audit of existing practices; setting goals for hiring, promoting, and retaining Black and Brown employees; and establishing a transparent framework for determining salaries, internal pay bands, pay increases, and promotions.
Build a more diverse board of directors by setting clear board diversity targets and actively recruiting new directors who represent the Black and Latinx communities.
Continue to discuss and address issues of bias within our organization through antiracist training and education for our leadership team, staff, and board of directors.
Create and clearly define a more comprehensive grievance mechanism that allows employees to report instances of marginalization and discrimination, and provide training to those responsible for handling grievances.
Continue to cover structural racism and racial equity in our research and content, even after these issues have become less prominent in national consciousness.
Ensure that a greater diversity of voices is integrated into our content and events by elevating the voices of our Black and Brown colleagues and external leaders.
Build our network of partnerships and collaborations with organizations advancing the cause of racial equity.”https://justcapital.com/about/
From these commitments, we can see that a published concern for racial equity makes a very effective justification (i.e. a cover) for implementing universal standards for and expectations of HUMAN CAPITAL monitoring and reporting.
No matter what JUST Capital’s Public Priorities Polls claim to demonstrate (I suspect they are heavily influenced by the Solutions Journalism/Impact Media approach, which is not unlike that which a now-infamous data modeller from London’s Imperial College used back in 2020. See, e.g. this ESG-related poll.), I think most people – black, white, and all others – are categorically opposed to the kind of SURVEILLANCE PROFILING entailed in the policy recommendations proposed by this organization. Or at least that would be the case if the peddlers of this brutal scheme were honest about how it is designed to work and to what end.
There are other reasons why racial equity is in every foundation’s, every corporation’s, every NGO’s mission statement – these include things like disrupting social demographics, redistributing wealth, demoralizing people who are white, and shifting economic power and prestige to the Non-Profit Industrial Complex (which is a main offender in terms of human capital tracking).
Note: I think that there are real wounds and scars and ongoing injuries that are the result of bigotry and prejudice. The statements above are not intended to dismiss those real injustices. Rather, I hope my observations will encourage further scrutiny of the language of systemic racism and especially its invocation by billionnaires, corporations, and the government. There is something unsettling about the fact that the same interests that are quick to eulogize George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement are also funding the pilot program installation of FLOCK SAFETY license plate readers in (to use a local example) a low-income, predominantly Black TULSA NEIGHBORHOOD. These groups care little about genuine progress in the area of race relations. Why would they? Trauma, division, strife, and poverty are the conditions upon which the new impact economy thrive. And, after all, Paul Tudor Jones, the mastermind of this organization made his fortune in …. what?
I encourage you to look it up.