ESG: Heavenly Wisdom from A Good Place or Fiery Propaganda?
IHost of The Crude Life, “Everyday Energy For Everyday People”
[Editor’s Note: Our friend Jason Spiess, host of The Crude Life, has now created ESG University, where the dangers of ESG and those who are relentlessly pushing it are exposed. He addresses it with a distinct brand of humor, this time on the subject of ESG propagandizing from “A Good Place.”]
During Spring Break, my son and I spent some time catching up on each other’s personal pop cultures and streaming selections of du jour.
“The Good Place is pretty much my favorite show right now,” my 16-year-old son said.
I was familiar with the name of the show and couple of cast members. I finally got around to watching a couple episodes this Memorial Weekend and it’s fantastic. A little bubble-gummy for my usual taste in sit-coms, #AquaTeen, but well written, acted and unique storyline filled with ethics and morals. Something missing in today’s content. More on this in a moment, but for now, The Good Place does a fabulous job of explaining how ESG is supposed to work in a vacuum.
Actually, it might be the best Environmental Social Governance (ESG)Training Video on the market today. It shows how ESG works and how they are training multiple generations to understand a scoring system based on ethics and values.
OK now for a little context, let’s start with the premise of The Good Place according to Wiki:
The Good Place is an American fantasy comedy television series created by Michael Schur. The series is centered around an afterlife in which humans are sent to “the Good Place” or “the Bad Place” after death. All humans are assigned a numerical score based on the morality of their conduct in life, and only those with the very highest scores are sent to the Good Place, where they enjoy eternal happiness with their every wish granted, guided by an artificial intelligence named Janet; all others experience an eternity of torture in the Bad Place.
The Good Place received critical acclaim for its originality, writing, acting, setting, and tone. The first season’s twist ending and the show’s exploration and creative use of ethics and philosophy were specifically praised.
The twists, turns and burns really creates a fun ride for the viewer as the cast deconstructs different scenarios of ethics and the unintended consequences our choices bring. It’s kinda a Snowball Effects meets the Butterfly Effect really.
In fact, one of the lead characters is an ethics teacher who is in The Bad Place because his indecisive indecision in life created unintended consequences for the surrounding people in his life.
One of the best illustrations of ESG can be their example of giving your grandmother flowers in 1534 versus 2009.
In 1534, Douglas Wynegarr of Hawkhurst, England gave his grandmother a dozen roses for her birthday. He picked them himself and walked them over to her. She was pleased. For this action Douglas was awarded 145 points by heaven and hell’s collaborative points system.
In 2009, Doug Ewing of Scaggsville, Maryland also gave his grandmother a dozen roses. He lost four points in the same system? Why? Because he ordered the roses from his cell phone that was made in a sweatshop. The flowers were grown with toxic pesticides and picked by exploited migrant workers and then delivered from thousands of miles away, creating a massive carbon footprint. The profits of said flower sale ended up in the pocket of a racist billionaire CEO who sends his female employees unwanted dick pics.
In theory, ESG vets the supply chain to see if everyone along the way is using ethical practices and upholding moral obligations. In reality it appears ESG is becoming the third wave in authoritative control over the masses.
The Good Place explaining the ethical or morale degradation of the simple act of giving your grandmother flowers is exactly the way our minds are becoming trained. Especially our youth.
In the same way my generation grew up with being conditioned through pop culture that Oil and Gas companies were nothing short of a cocky generation is being condition to be very aware of emissions, inclusion and inequality.
In fact my son just took his driver’s license permit test. It’s the test that allows you to drive with an adult. When I asked him how the test went, his first words were – “There was a lot of emissions questions on the test.”
Not a word about the rules of the road, vehicle safety or drinking and driving, just emissions. I have no idea how many questions were about emissions, but there was enough of them to stand out as the first takeaway from his written via the computer screen driver’s test.
The majority of Americans under the age of 35-ish where raised on Venn Diagrams, Analytics and even complex cartoons like Rick and Morty that are very layered with examples, context and assumed knowledge.
The way kids learn today is difference to. Much more surface learning via YouTube and LinkedIn. In the same way Book Nerds and Egg Heads used to have the Encylopedia stored in there brain, kids today have 1000’s of 3-minute reaction videos disguised as instructional or recap videos stored in theirs. The missing ingredient in all these videos, reactions and content is expertise.
Sure they have expertise on how they feel, but that’s mostly it. There is very little expertise in the actually subject, event or science. Just a reaction to something with passion, possibly manufactured or filtered even. Needlesstosay there is very little originality on the Internet today, which make herding humans about as as easy as attracting a moth to a light.
The number one show on the Internet is kids watching kids watch Internet videos. That’s like someone watching a Cher Impersonator impersonate the Cher Imersonator who is impersonating Cher.
This is how Greta Thunberg becomes the leading Climate Scientist on the planet to usher in an ESG Change while the entitled and appointed leaders suppress or steal any new ideas from the people to ensure their chosen one stays in the conversation.
Unless you truly believe Greta Thunberg is the leading climate scientist on the planet and all these university educated doctors are just boring, old and lame.
Quick ESG Classroom Column thought exercise to prove a point. Without looking anything up, just using your mind, name one climate scientist right now.
Could you? Or does Greta have the market in your Climate Change world for expertise?
This is why books like Harry The Dirty Dog, Wall Street, Dallas and Ozarksare very instrumental in cultivating the next generation of leaders by shaping their ethics and values with seeds of suggestion.
In conclusion, the Flower Example from The Good Place illustrates just how hard it has become to know how to do good anymore. We are living in a very busy, complex, interconnected world and it doens’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
If anyone is looking for a quick ESG Training Video on how ESG is supposed to work through computer models, classical ethics and subjective information, watch The Good Place. Because whether justified or not, in today’s world your actions have unintended consequenses and implications that ripple further into other people’s lives.
For 30 years I have seen first-hand hard-working executives and board directors who have had the best of intention to do the right thing fail miserably to ensure ethical outcomes. Often times it boils down to their “right thing” isn’t my “right thing” because their means do not justify my end.
Governance is important. But who is the G in yours or my scenario?
Without the right information, how can a board functions effectively? The same people who got us into this mess better start another committee or task force in order to spin their same agenda in a Green and Eco-Friendly way.
This old and antiquated method does not offer any single answer to how boards can ensure that they receive “accurrate” or the “right” information. It merely asks elected and appointed leaders to keep considering how to present accurrate information the right way with the right visual aids.
We need to have a clearer remedy than that.
On The Good Place, central character Eleanor (played by Kristen Bell) has Chidi, a trained moral philosophy professor (played by William Jackson Harper), to help her become a better person and avoid The Bad Place.
Who will be our corporate leaders’ Chidi?
The moral universe of the The Good Place damns those who fail see through the complexity of modern life. Corporations and their leaders guilty of the same failing warrant the same.
Ignorance is no longer a defence.
Class dismissed til next week.
Questions on today’s lesson? Know someone using Ethical Energy? ESG University wants to know who these leaders are as we continue to showcase and highlight ESG solutions in energy. Email us at with names of companies, people and organizations showing ESG in action.
This post appeared first on Natural Gas Now.