Free speech foe Trent Lott made it urgent business to "co-opt" new GOP voices of the Nov. 2010 elections. He's also a lobbyist for GE, one of Obama's biggest corporate cronies.
9/15/11, "GE responds to charges of crony capitalism," Timothy P. Carney, Washington Examiner
"General Electric, with a larger lobbying budget than any other company in America, has long lobbied for and profited from Big Government. Since Obama tapped GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt as Job Czar, this critique has spread throughout the Right.
When it came out that GE's U.S. corporate income tax bill for 2010 was $0, anti-GE sentiment grew on the Left and Right. Finally, at the latest Republcian debate Newt Gingrich attacked GE for
- profiting from Obama-style green-energy loopholes.
So today, GE responds: "There has been a lot of talk lately about GE and what some call crony capitalism. Unfortunately, those same people don’t want the facts to get in the way of their political rhetoric."
The statement begins by pointing out the ways in which GE does make things better: making better medical devices and better jet engines, and employing people in the process. Since I'm pretty harsh on GE, I'll say, good for them for engaging in commerce, which makes the world more prosperous.
Now here are some more GE claims,
- and some of my responses.
"We are not receiving special treatment"
This is a hard one to believe. GE, again, spends more on lobbying than any other company. Its lobbyists include Linda Daschle, whose husband Tom was the Senate Majority Leader and today is a confidant of Obama. Former senior Ways & Means Committee member Jim McCrery is a lobbyist for GE as is former House Democratic Leader Dick Gephardt. Former Senators Trent Lott and John Breaux are GE lobbyists. Immelt has been an official advisor to Obama through his whole presidency.
I think GE needs to explain
- what it means by "special treatment."
"Last year, only 4 percent of our revenue came from sales to the U.S. government."
This is really off target. The dig at GE is not that it makes all its money selling to the U.S. government. It's that it finds
- all sorts of ways to profit off of big government,
- including subsidies and regulations.
Off the top of my head, here are a few ways:
- GE is a top beneficiary of Export-Import Bank subsidies.
- GE launched an embryonic stem-cell business just after President Obama announced the government would start subsidizing them.
- GE owns half of Greenhouse Gas Services, a business that generates and trades in greenhouse-gas credits -- something that only has value if government constrains GHG emissions.
- GE is a leading manufacturer of wind turbines, which receive all sorts of federal and state subsidies."...(GE bought these from Enron in 2002. ed.)
- "GE lobbied for and benefits from the light-bulb efficiency regulations that drive consumers to more expensive light bulbs.
- On the state level, GE gets generous "incentives" (subsidies) from governments. Consider this Virginia case.
- GE got $140 billion bailout from the FDIC in 2008.
4/13/11, "Cantor, McDonnell, Warner pay GE to replace some of the Va. jobs GE lobbying killed," Timothy P. Carney, Washington Examiner
5/10/2002, "GE Completes Enron Wind Acquisition; Launches GE Wind Energy," Press Release
8/15/11, "Safety recall of 1.8 million CFL's," American Thinker, John Hunt
Brand recalled is Phillips not GE but shows dangers of "energy-saving lightbulbs."
Commenter to AT:
- intentionally destroyed by our government."
6/14/11, "The Light Bulb Goes On About the GOP Congressional Leadership," BigGovernment.com, Kurt Schlichter
"What kind of half-wit thinks it’s a bright idea to force all Americans to abandon safe, cheap incandescent bulbs in favor of overpriced, toxic mercury-harboring devices whose dank glow brightens nothing but the hearts of hair-shirted enviro-wackos, crony capitalist CFL manufacturers, and gloom-adoring emo kids. Strike three.
If the Republican Party can’t make a stand at the government telling us what kind of light bulbs to use,
- what good is it?
Evidently none, because it won’t take that stand. Against all common sense – a continuing theme – Speaker John Boehner let Upton have the chairmanship despite his unblemished track record of failure, buying Upton’s solemn promise to get right onto undoing the incandescent light bulb ban. Which, of course, he did not do – in fact, he has blocked the efforts of real conservatives to try and lift this noxious decree....
Gentlemen, this is UNSAT. And you better understand – if we are to be governed by irresponsible, lying, big government nanny-staters, we’d much rather that their names be followed by a “D” than an “R.” That way, not only does the Republican brand avoid dilution but
- the pseudo-cons who sold us out get screwed in the bargain.
If we’re going down, you’re going with us. Short-sighted? Yeah. Unreasonable? Perhaps. Your problem in 2012?
- Oh, hell yes.
11/12/10, "General Electric to sink $2 billion into China development as production moves from US," Daily Mail UK
"General Electric Co. plans to sink more than $2 billion into its efforts in China through 2012. The conglomerate has shifted more production from the U.S. to China and also looks to build new partnerships there.
GE said Tuesday that it will likely spend $500million on research and development and new customer innovation centers, adding more than 1,000 new jobs.
- More than $1.5billion is expected to be put toward new joint ventures with Chinese state-owned enterprises in high-technology sectors.
The company is also moving more manufacturing abroad. Last month it shut a lightbulb factory in Virginia and will relocate those 200 jobs to China.
The U.S. workers were deemed too expensive and lacked the necessary skills for the new energy-efficient bulbs....
GE also is involved in a joint acquisition with State Grid-owned Shanghai Electric Power Co. for a controlling interest in Shanghai Tianling Switchgear Co., a Shanghai-based
- green power distribution equipments maker."...
To Trent Lott and his cronies, the Bush crowd, etc., job 1 is cutting the American middle class off at the knees, 2007, 2010:
6/15/07, "Senate Leaders Agree to Revive Immigration Bill," NY Times," R. Pear, J. Zeleny
"The Republican whip, Trent Lott of Mississippi, who supports the (immigration) bill, said:
- “Talk radio is running America. We have to deal with
At some point, Mr. Lott said,
- Senate Republican leaders may try to rein in “younger guys who are huffing and puffing against the (immigration) bill.”"...
11/20/10, "Revolutionary Do-Over," Wall St. Journal, John Fund
Former GOP Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, now a big-time Washington lobbyist, has already told the Washington Post that
- it's imperative for his tribe to "co-opt" the tea partiers arriving in D.C."...
11/4/10, "The future of the Republican Party...certainly isn't Trent Lott. They're the Old Castrati. The liberals, they are the New Castrati. But these Republicans-in-name-only and the GOP establishment types are the Old Castrati. "...
11/4/10, "Ruling Class GOP declare war on country class conservatives, " Rush Limbaugh transcript.