Larry Kudlow’s Anti-Gay Mutual Funds

Larry Kudlow sits on the Advisory board of Ave Maria Mutual Funds. According to his bio on the Ave Maria website, “Mr. Kudlow is CEO of Kudlow & Co., LLC, an economic and investment research firm. In addition to being a noted economist, he is an author, a nationally syndicated columnist, contributing editor of National Review magazine and host of CNBC’s ‘The Kudlow Report.’ Mr. Kudlow served as associate director of economics and planning during President Reagan’s first term and was a member of the Bush-Cheney Transition Advisory Committee. He has also testified as an expert witness on economic matters before several congressional committees.”

His credentials and influence well established; Mr. Kudlow’s involvement on an advisory board that openly, and actively, discriminates based on sexual orientation is disconcerting, to say the least. The fact that a publicly traded fund should be able to do this is even more alarming.

Ave maria Funds states its method of operation as;
“Every stock and bond we consider must first meet the strict financial criteria set by our experienced team of portfolio managers and analysts at Schwartz Investment Counsel, Inc., adviser for Ave Maria Mutual Funds. The Firm was established in 1980, and is a registered investment adviser dedicated to helping our clients reach their investment goals. If a security seems attractively priced to our analysts and portfolio managers, then, the company is screened based on the moral criteria.

The distinguished Catholic Advisory Board, guided by the Magisterium of the Church, sets the criteria for screening out companies based on religious principles. They actively seek the advice and counsel of Catholic clergy in making these determinations.

Using a proprietary moral screening process, companies eliminated from investment consideration would, in general, encompass two major categories: first, those involved in the practice of abortion, and second, companies whose policies are judged to be anti-family, such as companies that produce or distribute pornography or whose policies undermine the Sacrament of Marriage.

George Schwartz, of Schwartz investment counsel, discussing morally responsible investing on the television program ‘World Over’, an EWTN production, stated that what the company applies is a preference rule, not a hard screen. According to Mr. Schwartz, it used to be a hard screen, meaning they would absolutely never invest in companies that do not share their discriminatory views, but because so many companies were now offering same-sex benefits they had to change their policy to a less stringent preference rather than a hard screen. The preference rule leaves them the ability to do business with a company that pays benefits to same sex partners if it is their only way to make a profit; ensuring investors that their investments are generally theologically guilt free, but not to the point where it would actually harm their bottom line.

According to Mr Schwartz, the goal is to influence corporate behavior, and therefore social issues, by demanding that companies wishing investments from these funds follow the doctrines of the Catholic Church. The Funds’ religious standards are overseen by a Catholic Advisory Board, including Mr. Kudlow, which follows the Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church. Each member is to be familiar with its basic tenets and core doctrine. The Advisory Board meets regularly to review the Funds’ moral standards and criteria.

Ave Maria Funds, Advised by Larry Kudlow and six others, and managed by Schwartz Investment Counsel, will not serve the investment needs of any companies that do not discriminate against homosexuals and same-sex marriages, unless there are no options available, and their profit margin is threatened.

So, if two investment ‘opportunities’ walk into a diner called Ave Maria, which has a management that includes advisor Larry Kudlow, manager George Schwartz, and advisor Adam Cardinal Maida, Archbishop Emeritus of Detroit, and one of those investment opportunities paid benefits to same-sex partners, the Ave Maria Diner, and its management, would only serve the other ‘opportunity’ that agrees with them and their discrimination against homosexuals and same-sex marriages.

However, The diner and its management leave themselves some policy room in order to make a profit, by not putting a ‘no gay-friendly customers’ sign on the door. This way, if only one customer comes in, and that customer doesn’t engage in the same discriminatory practices they do, they can still serve that customer based on a profit over theology clause they’ve allowed themselves. What a wonderful ‘discrimination of convenience’ system they’ve established.

It’s become apparent that the rules that apply to the rest of society seem to have no place, and certainly no respect, on Wall Street. Obviously the same disregard shown to laws and regulations governing exploitation, fraud, and theft, has been extended to principles of civil rights and civil liberties. I’m sure that someone will attempt to present an explanation as to why this discrimination is more acceptable, or somehow more legal, than any other, but there is no excuse for this particular ‘bottom line’; discrimination is discrimination, and wrong is wrong.

We dealt with these principles in 1964, it’s time for Kudlow, Schwartz, Ave Maria et al., and perhaps Wall Street in general to catch up.

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5 Responses to Larry Kudlow’s Anti-Gay Mutual Funds

  1. Vote -1 Vote +1paul
    June 21, 2010 at 7:48 pm

    Homosexuality is wrong and the Ave Maria fund stands for the principles the church stands for. Two women don’t fit together ..two men don’t fit together…the purpose of intercourse is to produce life. Our culture teaches that I should do whatever gives me pleasure. Just because something makes you feel good or gives you pleasure doesn’t make it good for you or right. The next group to claim I was born that way are pedophiles.

    • Vote -1 Vote +1Liam Fox
      June 22, 2010 at 6:13 am

      What a twisted little mind you have.

  2. -5 Vote -1 Vote +1Stephen Dufrechou
    June 23, 2010 at 7:21 am

    Liam, once again, a knock-out article, here! This is a “left hook” critique, my friend. Your work increasingly reminds me of Kevin Philips critiques (e.g. “American Theocracy”) and other similar voices, like Chris Hedges in “American Fascists” or John W. Dean in “Conservatives Without a Conscious”. Keep at ‘em.

  3. +5 Vote -1 Vote +1Jeff
    June 26, 2010 at 8:25 am

    Good for Kudlow, I like him and his fund alot after reading this.

  4. +5 Vote -1 Vote +1Tommy
    June 28, 2010 at 12:17 am

    Mr. Fox, I believe you incorrectly used the word “discrimination” in your article. Just because a group of people see something different than you, how is that discriminatory?

    Maybe you are being discriminatory to the billions of heterosexuals that choose to marry by trying to corrupt the idea of traditional marriage, which has worked well for thousands of years.

    So-called “gay marriage” will add just another nail in the coffin of civilization. Millions of level-headed people have already spoken with their votes in quite a few states and supported traditional marriage–between a man and a woman.

    I applaud the Catholic Church for standing for truth and not wavering with her message in regards to marriage. And I think the Ave Maria mutual funds will continue to flourish for two reasons: good management and God’s blessing.

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