The Tampa Bay Business Journal reported that Florida will withdraw $2 billion in investment funds from BlackRock because the firm abides by standards against racism and for environmental awareness. This sort of ethical investing is repulsive to Governor Ron DeSantis and the extremists in his government. Republicans usually represent and celebrate big corporations. But in the past decade, many Republicans have turned against the same corporations for what they call “woke capitalism.” That is, a number of big corporations have sought to placate their Black employees and customers, their LGBT+ employees and customers, and socially aware young people.

When corporations take stands on sensitive issues which make their employees and customers angry, hat’s “woke capitalism.” When they oppose hate laws and work to promote diversity and equity, that’s “woke capitalism.” The more they step up to support minority causes, the more they enrage reactionary Republicans like DeSantis.

Here is an example of Governor Ron DeSantis acting boldly to crush “woke capitalism.”

Florida will pull $2 billion from the largest asset-management firm in the world over ideological differences.

State Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronisannounced Thursday that Florida will immediately freeze about $1.43 billion in long-term securities and about $600 million in short-term overnight investments managed by BlackRock because of the firm’s use of “Environmental, Social, and Governance” standards — known as ESG.

Patronis in a prepared statement said he doesn’t “trust BlackRock’s ability to deliver” and “BlackRock CEO Larry Fink is on a campaign to change the world.”

“Whether stakeholder capitalism, or ESG standards, are being pushed by BlackRock for ideological reasons, or to develop social credit ratings, the effect is to avoid dealing with the messiness of democracy,” Patronis said.

Republican leaders in Florida and across the country have targeted ESG ratings, which can involve considering a wide range of issues in investments, such as companies’ climate-change vulnerabilities; carbon emissions; racial inequality; product safety; supply-chain labor standards; privacy and data security; and executive compensation.

Patronis said the state Department of Financial Services oversees about $60 billion and that the money with BlackRock will be moved “elsewhere.”

“I think it’s undemocratic of major asset managers to use their power to influence societal outcomes,” Patronis said. “If Larry (Fink), or his friends on Wall Street, want to change the world — run for office. Start a non-profit. Donate to the causes you care about. Using our cash, however, to fund BlackRock’s social-engineering project isn’t something Florida ever signed up for.”

Fink is a leading proponent of ESG metrics. In a letter this year to corporate executives, Fink said companies using the standards are “performing better than their peers.”

“Stakeholder capitalism is not about politics,” Fink wrote. “It is not a social or ideological agenda. It is not ‘woke.’ It is capitalism, driven by mutually beneficial relationships between you and the employees, customers, suppliers, and communities your company relies on to prosper.”

BlackRock manages over $8 trillion in assets. They are unlikely to miss Florida’s $2 billion.