Divestment Poll

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

This informal poll is designed to judge community opinion, and has unrestricted voting. We expect we will see votes from students, faculty, staff, alumni, family, and friends. Please vote once.

The results of this poll will be announced next Friday. If all goes well, this may be the first of many Daily Gazette polls on various topics this academic year.


6 thoughts on “Divestment Poll

  • September 13, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    Problem: You can vote multiple times on this poll..

    • September 13, 2013 at 3:06 pm

      That’s why we call it an informal poll. Thanks for voting once, people.

      Andrew Karas
      The Daily Gazette

      • September 14, 2013 at 11:01 am

        But I wanted to check up on the results… So I voted again. But this time I voted the opposite of how I voted originally so I wouldn’t skew the data.

        • September 14, 2013 at 1:43 pm

          Not to burst your bubble, but that does skew the data, because people aren’t voting 50-50. Please just click “poll results” next time you want to see the poll results. Or, wait until we post results next Friday.


  • September 13, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Why do most people on campus not agree with Mountain Justice’s Divestment program? It’s a conundrum considering the relatively liberal, activist population we have. But honestly, most people don’t agree with it because DIVESTMENT IS NOT AN EFFECTIVE ACTION.

    Scenario #1: Swarthmore divests. All by itself. Finance industry snoozes.

    Scenario #2: Swarthmore divests. A few schools follow suit, within the spate of a few months time. Finance industry sighs.

    Schenario #3: A coalition of colleges and universities all divest TOGETHER, AT THE SAME TIME from funds that promote clean coal and other stupid dirty awful energy shit. Finance industry is like “holy shit, this isn’t a huge share of our funds, but this could bespeak a trend that will ripple beyond US higher education. We better invest in Tesla instead.” Then everyone buys a Tesla and the world is pretty and good again.

    The problem isn’t MJ’s goals, but actually a lack of breadth in their tactics. Why would Swarthmore’s administration divest unless they had reasonable expectations that their decision would ACTUALLY MATTER or MAKE AN IMPACT?

    Blah blah blah, it all starts with one person being the sacrificial lamb to morality.

    But guess what. Sometimes going at it alone doesn’t bespeak courage, but simply the lack of a coordinated effort. You have entire campuses full of people who want clean energy. Set your sights higher. And if not, then yeah, until that day comes maybe I don’t want my endowment jeopardized.

    I won’t be a dumb sacrificial lamb. Swat trained activists better than that.

    • September 17, 2013 at 3:12 am

      Sounds like you’ve got some valuable insight. But, I think you might do well to check out the many ways in which MJ has been investing a significant amount of time and effort into coordinating their actions with those of other students and activists around the country to maximize impact. like how about that convergence thing last year? i didn’t get to go to many things but weren’t there students from all over the country talking about how to coordinate their efforts and make this movement have a real impact and have it not just be in the abstract? they had speakers from the frontlines talking about how important this movement is, and how it can have real affects. it isn’t about being a sacrificial lamb, but I think especially coming from the outside, as I am, you may have a very warped view of the way social movements like this work. i know i don’t have an accurate view of the timeline or the ways in which movements get to be large enough to have a significant impact. but again, i believe mj people have done research into that, into the strategy, building, and execution of other divestment movements, of the civil rights movement in the us, of anti-fracking etc. stuff. and it isn’t about blind trust either. but i do get the feeling that when it comes to stuff like this, literally fighting for the future of the world, holding back to wait for a guaranteed chain of cause and effect doesn’t work, because if there was a solution like that, wouldn’t we have done it already? it’s about creating a system that renders the destructive relationship we as a species have developed with the earth impossible, isn’t it? and that takes creativity and daring and small steps that do not immediately land us at the end of the path.

      tl;dr i think your diagnosis of the tactics of divestment are pretty naive in terms of how progress is actually made and think you should use your significant smarts to help rather than online criticize. but then again i’m a hypocrite


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