To become President, you have to learn to suck up to people more powerful than yourself. It worked for both Bushes, the Clintons, and Presidents before them. Obama’s no different. What I think is interesting is there’s not been ANY publicization about the fact that Jeffrey Immelt, GE CEO and now Obama-appointed Chairperson of the Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, is a Republican.
All praise in the media to the appointee, and this isn’t his first gig in Washington. The good-ole-boy club put him in charge of the Economic Recovery Board in 2009. Immelt took position of CEO of GE in 2001, and since then GE’s stock has dropped more than 60% and he has been named on of the top 5 worst CEO’s of 2008! Nice choice Obama.
The story beneath the story here is Obama’s real strategy. Obama has told all of us he wants our economy to recover with more “green” clean energy jobs, in producing batteries and solar panels. And since Immelt has been the biggest loser in the country in this arena, proving this is not a profitable direction for businesses to move just yet. GE on one hand can stand to lose so much money since they’re the #2 biggest business in the world. The USA, however, cannot.
Obama toured GE’s battery plant that was defunct until Immelt took control, a sign of what his interest is in Immelt. Hey, if it doesn’t work out, at least we can say we tried, right?
Immelt is also known well for doing a lot of business with the Iranian government. This is business, after all, but is this how the business of the American government should be run? Apparantly Obama thinks so. Shoot, he’s appointed this guy to two offices in two years that he’s insanely unqualified for.
But you can’t blame Immelt. The guy took position of CEO after the “legend of legends” retired, Jack Welch, and he hasn’t been able to pull GE out of a downward spiral that began after he took the chairmanship. Wait, that is until this week, when Obama appointed him to replace Volcker…
Of course Volcker can’t be much better, being that the economy hasn’t gotten any better, which is the way a Federal Reserve guy would have it.
So Immelt (hopefully) gets a rise in GE stock to save face. Obama gets to save face by appointing a Republican who is also CEO of a huge multinational company (despite the fact he hasn’t been able to lead that company to any increased profits). And the American people get… screwed.
Aren’t we trying to get away from big business running the government? Don’t we as the little guys get the bad end of that? Yet, the executive of our #1 largest company, JPMorgan Chase executive William Daley, just got appointed as Obama’s chief of staff.
Well, since Immelt’s focus as CEO has been moving jobs overseas to manufacture green energy, and Obama is pushing hard for green energy (not that it’s a bad thing at all, but the result…) is that you are likely to see more lobbying from right inside the hen house for an ease in areas that will allow GE to do these things overseas cheaper. After all, Immelt’s first priority is GE — NOT America.
I love this quote:
“Given Immelt’s track record we’re astonished that Obama would select him toan advisory board,” said Borelli. “But let’s not forget that GE is one of thebiggest players in the Washington D.C. political scene – spending an averageof over $20 million annually for lobbying over the past four years.”
So you can certainly expect to see change in Washington. Just don’t expect it to be all that good.
“We also wonder whether Immelt promised to promote Obama’s green agenda thoughNBC’s vast media empire. Timely news and entertainment programming couldadvance public support of cap-and-trade legislation to address global warmingwhich might mandate sales of GE wind turbines – creating a win-win for Obamaand Immelt, but a lose-lose, we believe, for consumers, taxpayers and GEshareholders,” Borelli said.
This isn’t capitalism or a free market economy, this is corruption at it’s core. Small business (quoting Obama here) creates 2 out of every 3 jobs created in America. So then why would we appoint a BIG business CEO to advise the government in a job which is dictated by small businesses? Take note that the people on our economic advisory boards are leaders of big businesses who all received a ton in taxpayer-funded bailout money. Nope, no conflict of interest there!