Monday, February 28, 2011

Commentarama--We Bring Good Things To Light

Yes, indeed. President Obama searched and searched to find the right man for the right job. He needed a front man who seemed to have the credentials of free enterprise, but who underneath was a corporate shark who knew how to get his piece of the federal cornucopia. One who knew that most green initiatives are damaging to the interests of the very industry he represents and can gleefully destroy his fellows while sucking up federal money for his own company.

That man is Jeffrey Immelt. He is now the chairman of the President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness (yeah, right) as well as the chief executive officer of General Electric. It is a good fit. Immelt has considerable experience with government. Aside from eliminating 32,000 GE jobs, or sending them overseas between 2005 and 2009, Immelt capped 2009 and 2010 by earning huge fines from the Federal Securities and Exchange Commission for stock manipulation, insider trading, and improper accounting procedures in its financial branch.

So, like tax-dodger and accounting illiterate Timothy Geithner at Treasury, Immelt knows both how to grow business (but only his own) and how to get caught with his hand in the cookie jar by a federal agency. That makes him a perfect Obama appointee. If there's anybody who knows how to send jobs overseas while claiming to "create" jobs in America, it's Immelt. Obama needed to appoint a chairman who didn't have a former membership in the Socialist Workers Party and looked like a successful American businessman. And he got one.

As for creating jobs, Immelt uses the same kind of calculus as Obama. Count "created and saved," and don't mention where they were created, where they were saved, and most importantly, where they were lost. Although GE's workforce is back nearly to 2005 levels, very few are actual net additions to the American workforce. As for the SEC fines, well they were only a few dozen millions of dollars, but Immelt made sure they reached quiet civil compromises without any admission of wrongdoing before the cuffs could go on. In 2010 alone, GE was penalized $23.4 million for its involvement in the Iraq "oil for food" scandal.

Immelt considers renewable energy projects (rather than actual manufactured products) to be his highest priority. And in keeping with that, he has managed to steer all kinds of federal funds to GE to advance the mutual government/big corporation green weenie agenda, even before his appointment as chairman. Among his clever gimmicks is to promote Gore-like carbons taxes while at the same time seeking carbon credits for GE. Nothing like jacking-up the cost of fossil fuels during a deep recession. How is that going to make American more competitive and create jobs (in America, at least)? It's like rubbing dirt into a wound to make the wound heal faster.

But knowing how to play the game, set up phony initiatives that get huge federal support, create a job while destroying five others, and directing the lion's share of profits to your own company while claiming to be "for the average American" is a hallmark of the Obama/big corporation/big union strategy. I can't help wondering if Immelt thinks that there will be a government takeover of all energy producing and energy using mega-corporations, and that he is the perfect guy to be its first commissar.

Thomas Edison must be rolling over in his grave.


13 comments:

AndrewPrice said...

GE is a bad actor. And Immelt is a disgrace to capitalism.

FYI, if anyone wants to read more, here’s (LINK) where we first covered Immelt’s appointment to the President’s council as well as the extend of GE’s lobbying activities, jobs shipped over seas and special favors. And here’s (LINK) where we covered GE getting a waiver form the cap and trade rules that it actually lobbied for, and how GE’s denial that they sought a waiver was a lie.

Writer X said...

Immelt is laughing all the way to the bank. I think he'd sell his own mother if given the opportunity.

Is this being investigated? This is so in-your-face crookery (my new word for the day) that it's disgusting. My 15-year old niece could spot this guy as a crook and a fraud. But, then again, he's in good company with this administration.

T_Rav said...

As I was reading that, I was listening to Glenn Beck letting us know that if Saudi Arabia should collapse Libya-style, gas prices would quickly more than double. And TOTUS is still trying to block drilling in the Gulf, as well as the exploitation of our oil shale deposits in the Midwest. Further proof that the Obamaist line about being more concerned about "working families" rather than big corporations is a ton of bull#@$%.

Joel Farnham said...

LawHawk,

I wonder if GE was always like this? Double-dealing, etc, etc.

I remember GE as being very reputable. Has it always conducted it's affairs this way? Or is it who it has been in bed with?

Crony capitalism is always a bad bet for the country and whatever government is in power. It is bad because it eventually corrupts the politicians, if not directly,by association. I.E. "They all do it!" It causes inflation in the long run. It leads to monopolies which cripples a nation. It stifles innovation. It is just bad.

Maybe Immelt will be one of the indicted and convicted after this administration is gone. I hope so.

T_Rav said...

By the way, that pic to go with the post made me think of this weekend, when I went to Wal-Mart to get a new bulb for my room. Two-thirds of the bulbs on the shelves are now those stupid curlycue things that poison everything. Not gonna do it; I'm gonna stock up on the normal kind and keep using them as long as I can.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: A good story with a slightly different slant is always worth repeating. Like the EPA, Immelt is someone we're going to have to watch closely, lest we have both Government Motors and Government Electric.

LawHawkRFD said...

WriterX: At worst, this skates on the thin edge of bad ethics, but so far no laws broken. I felt I needed to bring you up to date after Andrew's previous articles so that we can stay aware of the deviousness of the socialist Obama administration hiring a faux-capitalist to give them both cover for their incestuous business relationship.

LawHawkRFD said...

T_Rav: Shock of all shocks, I just heard that the Obamist green weenies just gave their very first approval for Gulf deepwater drilling since the BP spill.

LawHawkRFD said...

Joel: No, GE hasn't always been this way. Former CEO Jack Welch was a pretty straight shooter, took legitimate advantage of the tax laws, and restructured GE so that it could be more profitable in its energy division (jet engines, rockets, and super freight train engines). Welch has been rather critical of Immelt, and occasionally even called bull---t on some of the government/eco-freak GE green nonsense.

LawHawkRFD said...

T_Rav: I was way ahead of you on that. In San Francisco, old-fashioned incandescent bulbs were disappearing even before there was a final deadline. As soon as I got to Caliente, I stocked up--60w, 75w, 100w, and three-way. If the green police don't find my stash, I'm set for the next twenty years.

Tehachapi Tom said...

Hawk
GE used to be run by a true capitalist. He retired and the furor over his retirement package was outrageous. However during his reign GE stock split several times and the value was on an up hill climb dividends were earned and paid. That is what we invest in a company for not some green weenie tree hugging crap.

Jack Welch should be cloned. there were several in GE's past who did well by the company but Jack did it with class and ethics. As for the curlicue light bulbs I tried em they suck. I use LED lights. Costly initially yes but they will probably be lighting this place for my son after I"m gone.

We have Government gone bananas and my patients for it is running out. Is there some way Kern County can secede from the nonsense we are saddled with?

LawHawkRFD said...

Tehachapi Tom: Every time the government mandates something, you can bet it will have a serious flaw. I'm not talking about the lag between turning the bulb on, or the number of nice lamps I have that the bulbs won't fit into, or its eerie effect on colors, nor even its initial high expense. You have to have a license and a black market connection to buy an old-fashioned mercury thermometer these days because the EPA decided that mercury is dangerous. So what's in these damned bulbs? Mercury. If you read the disposal instructions carefully, they almost require donning a hazmat suit before you can throw the crappy thing away. And the instructions for what to do if you break one, well, 'nuff said.

And given that we're supposed to be terrified of eating processed fish that might or might not contain mercury, I'm surprised that there isn't a whole new bureau of CFL police sneaking around your house checking to see if you're using the bulbs and disposing of them correctly. Maybe that's part of the Obama/Immelt jobs creation program.

If Kern County wants to secede, they ought to get all of the counties in the Central Valley to join them. They could get the water back on, burn the Delta smelt on a huge funeral pyre, then charge everybody twice what a citizen of the great State of Central California pays for the food it produces.

StanH said...

Jeffery Immelt is the poster child for the cronyism that exist between Wall Street, K-Street, and Washington politicians, the revolving door if you will. I’ve heard Jack Welch speak in a reserved, cautious agony of where GE finds itself today. Just wow!

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