Apple CEO Tim Cook Loses Cool, Blasts at Anti-Climate Change Shareholders to Withdraw Their Stock from the Company

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | March 3, 2014 4:33 PM EST

While Apple CEO Tim Cook may just be silently taking blows against the company and its profits, he apparently won't take it just seating down when critics pick on Apple's contributions to help save the environment and ease climate change and global warming.

Reuters
Apple CEO Tim Cook

During the company's Feb 28 annual shareholders meeting, Mr Cook advised shareholders who are non-believers of climate change and global warming to sell their Apple shares and "get out of the stock."

The U.S. National Center for Public Policy Research (NCPPR) provoked Mr Cook's ire during that fateful meeting. Described as a conservative economic free-market activist think tank which also happened to be an Apple shareholder, the NCPPR submitted a proposal urging Apple to quit pursuing further environmental-related initiatives and decisions that don't contribute to increased profits.

"We object to increased government control over company products and operations, and likewise mandatory environmental standards," Justin Danhof, NCPPR general counsel, wrote in a statement before the meeting. "This is something [Apple] should be actively fighting, not preparing surrender."

Ultimately voted down by shareholders, receiving just 2.95 per cent of the vote, the highlight of the meeting came in Mr Cook's controlled yet emotionally-charged words.

Apart from that environmental efforts make economic sense, Apple does "a lot of things for reasons besides profit motive. We want to leave the world better than we found it," Mr Cook said.

"When we work on making our devices accessible by the blind," Mr Cook said, "I don't consider the bloody [return on investment]."

And if after hearing such explanations shareholders still don't feel happy with the company's environment-related investments, then "get out of the stock."

"Here's the bottom line: Apple is as obsessed with the theory of so-called climate change," Mr. Danhof said. "The company's CEO fervently wants investors who care more about return on investments than reducing CO2 emissions to no longer invest in Apple. Maybe they should take him up on that advice."

"Although our proposal did not receive the required votes to pass, millions of Apple shareholders now know that the company is involved with organizations that don't appear to have the best interest of Apple's investors in mind," Mr Danhof continued. "Too often investors look at short-term returns and are unaware of corporate policy decisions that may affect long-term financial prospects. After today's meeting, investors can be certain that Apple is wasting untold amounts of shareholder money to combat so-called climate change. The only remaining question is: how much?"

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(Photo: Reuters / Robert Galbraith)
Apple CEO Tim Cook
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