Tag Archives: Boeing

Stop Maligning the Export-Import Bank. America Needs It.

Recently, pseudoconservative Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and a few of his Congressional chums, along with the neoconservative Heritage Foundation, have resumed their utterly misguided and dishonest propaganda campaign against the Export-Import Bank, maligning it with a litany of lies. Furthermore, because the Bank’s 2-year operating authorization is set to expire soon, Lee and his fellow pseudoconservative Congressional pals seek to kill the Bank, as does the Heritage Foundation and its lobbying outfit, Heritage Action.

They falsely claim that the Bank hands money out to “politically connected” businesses, skews free markets, and exposes taxpayers to unnecessary loan risk. They falsely claim that over 80% of its loans go to huge corporations like Boeing and General Electric. They malign the Bank as a “crony capitalist” agency.

All of their claims are utterly false, however. In this article, I will correct the record.

The Facts About The Export-Import Bank

Here are THE FACTS about the Export-Import Bank:

  • It does NOT receive any funding from the taxpayers and does not cost them a single cent. In fact, thanks to its interest rates, it returns a profit to taxpayers every year – to the tune of $1 bn last year.
  • It does NOT provide any subsidies to anyone. It only provides LOANS to businesses – which have to be (and are always) fully paid back with interest.
  • Over 90% of its loans are provided to SMALL BUSINESSES, NOT big companies like Boeing and GE.
  • It is NOT a crony capitalist agency, because crony capitalism is the act of providing handouts to those individuals or businesses who are politically connected or sympathetic to a sitting government. The Ex-Im bank provides loans without regard to businesses’ and their owners’ political sympathies or contributions.
  • It is absolutely necessary to help American companies level the playing field on the global market, which is heavily skewed towards foreign competitors who are lavishly subsidized (not merely provided with loans, but outright subsidized) by their national governments. Foreign countries always have (and will, for the foreseeable future) lavishly support their manufacturers, especially in key industry sectors. The only choice for the US is to either do the same or stop aiding its exporters and thus lose its industry entirely over time.
  • Big companies, such as Boeing and General Electric, receive only a small portion of the Export-Import Bank’s loans.
  • Ex-Im has NEVER loaned any money to Solyndra, despite Heritage Action’s utterly false claims.

Ignoring these facts, Sen. Mike Lee nonetheless presses for the Export-Import Bank’s deauthorization and has recently declared in the National Review that “whether the Export-Import Bank provides loans to respected, successful companies like Boeing or failed companies like Solyndra is irrelevant.”

Excuse me? Whom it provides loans to is irrelevant?

Are you on drugs, Sen. Lee?

It matters a lot!

Whom the Bank loans money to matters, because it determines whether the loan is likely to be paid back with interest or not. In the last 27 years, it has always been in all cases.

Sen. Lee protests that it’s irrelevant because loaning money to private companies – even to American exporters – supposedly skews the free market and violates conservative principles.

But as I will demonstrate, this is utter gibberish.

Economic Nationalism Leads To Prosperity, Free Trade To Economic Decline

Supporting American exporters – especially with loans rather than subsidies – does NOT skew free markets and is NOT a violation of conservative principles.

Globally, there are NO free markets – the global marketplace is already heavily skewed… in favor of America’s and American companies’ competitors, that is.

Virtually all major traders around the world, except the US, protect their industry with subsidies, loans, protective tariffs, and in many cases (e.g. China), currency manipulation.

China, India, Japan, Russia, Germany, France, Mexico, Canada – all of them, and many other countries around the world, protect, nurture, and generously aid their industries, especially exporting companies.

The US and the UK are the only major traders in the world who don’t do so and instead indulge in “free trade” fantasies.

It is therefore no surprise that the US has huge trade deficits with almost every other country around the world: with Italy and Ireland, $20 bn annually each; with Germany, over $30 bn annually; with Mexico, over $60 bn per year; with South Korea, $25 bn per year (it has tripled since the ratification of the KORUS free trade agreement).

America’s trade deficit with Japan is the largest America has ever had with Nippon.

America’s trade deficit with China last year was the largest ever recorded in human history between any two countries, at over $300 bn! Not just the largest between the US and China, but the largest trade deficit ever recorded between any two countries!

Such are the disastrous results of suicidal “free trade” policies that the GOP and the Heritage Foundation have promoted for decades.

These folks, including Sen. Mike Lee, are obviously ignorant of the fact that EVERY country which ever became an economic power did so by protecting and supporting its industrial base, especially exporters: England under the Acts of Navigation, Britain until the mid-19th century, France under Jean-Baptiste Colbert and Napoleon, Prussia under the Customs Union, Germany since the 19th century, Japan since the Meiji era, America from the 1790s to the 1960s, China today.

NO country has ever become an economic power, or generated prosperity, by indulging in free trade fantasies. Free trade is only for dupes and idiots.

America’s own history is instructive here. The US used to be, economically, a totally independent country and THE world’s factory of all sorts of goods. Today, it has been largely deindustrialized and is dependent on China for the necessities of life – thanks to suicidal “free trade” policies.

From the Founding Fathers’ era until the 1960s, the US followed the Founding Fathers’ economic preceipts: Manufacturing, not finance or services, is the nation’s economic muscle. Trade surpluses are preferrable to trade deficits. Exports are preferrable to imports. To protect the economy and Americans’ jobs, the US industrial base must be protected by any means necessary. “Made in the USA” should always be preferred.

It is no coincidence that all four Presidents who made it to Mount Rushmore were protectionists.

“Thank God I’m not a free trader”, President Teddy Roosevelt remarked once.

But starting in the 1960s, America began to unilaterally open up its huge market to foreign companies without obtaining reciprocation from foreign countries.

Thus became the deindustrialization, and the unilateral economic disarmament, of America.

And even though it was a Democratic-controlled Congress who passed, and a Democrat President (JFK) who signed, the Trade Promotion Act, it is Republicans who have led the way in this unilateral economic disarmament.

And, predictably, it has proved just as disastrous for America’s well-being as the Democrats’ campaign to unilaterally disarm America militarily.

Indeed, America now has two pro-unilateral-disarmament parties: the Democratic and Republican Parties.

The Democrats, led by Harry Reid and Edward Markey, want to unilaterally disarm America militarily. Republicans, led by Sen. Mike Lee, want to unilaterally disarm America economically.

America has now fewer than 25% of the nuclear arsenal she had in 1991, at the Cold War’s end, and one of its last protections for the US industry is the Export-Import Bank. If that is terminated, the US industrial base is likely to go the way American civilian shipbuilders went after the Reagan Administration cut off aid to them: out of business.

 

Friday Media Dump

Good News on Monday; bad news on Friday. Here’s a little of everything that got dumped on us today:

Trump trumped?

All but two candidates have declined Trump’s invitation to the Newsmax/ION debate that he is to host:

Trump considering alternatives:

NLRB play against Boeing was just blackmail

Union approves Boeing peace agreement

A Machinists union voted to approve a new contract that promises a cease-fire against their employer – Boeing.

The Machinists District Lodge 751 approved a contract with 74% of the voting members. The agreement gives one of the most generous pension packages in the industry to all employees including brand new hires. In exchange, the union promises to cease hostilities against the manufacturer for four years,  pull their complaints from the NLRB, allow Boeing to build their 737 in Kansas and the 787 in South Carolina.

The union recently filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that put Boeing’s new South Carolina facility in question. South Carolina governor Nikki Haley has said the union actions threatened thousands of jobs in a struggling economy[1].

The complaints alleged that Boeing was building the factory in a right-to-work state to avoid more strikes like those of 2005 and 2008, the latter which is attributed to the delay of the 787 Dreamliner at significant expense to Boeing and its reputation.

The union agreed to pull its complaints from the NLRB now that it has gotten the contract that was perhaps the goal of the conflict. Unfortunately, the board is an independent agency that is almost completely populated by President Obama’s appointees. While the union pulling their complaint does not guarantee that the board will follow suit, the union got the agreement it wanted while giving up little more than promising not to strike until 2016. It is likely that the unions will work with the Obama administration to get the board to drop the evaluation. This would show Boeing that the union has significant sway within the government and would rid Obama of a very negative campaign issue that would likely have run  right up to the election.

Boeing has had little choice but to come out with positive statements about the agreement. Boeing needs the NLRB mess to disappear so it can get on with production of their Dreamliner at the factory in South Carolina, the 737 in Kansas and no more work stoppages from the union – at least not from Machinists Lodge 751.

Sources:

[1] New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2011/12/07/business/AP-US-Boeing-Labor.html?_r=1&partner=rss&emc=rss

You can help stop Obama's job-killing NLRB

Halt the assault has started an online campaign to let our members of Congress know that the NLRB has over-stepped the rights of workers.

According to LaborUnionReport.com help is needed:

Last week’s NLRB vote to give unions the ability to ambush union-free workers and the companies that employ them, as well as to deny due process on bargaining unit issues, is only the latest in a long line of attacks on America’s union-free workforce by the union extremists controlling Barack Obama’s National Labor Relations Board.

In April, President Obama used the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to prevent Boeing from opening a huge new factory in South Carolina – a right-to-work state.

The NLRB is not operating as an unbiased mediator between the job creators and union leadership – their time has come.

End the NLRB. Sign the petition and be part of the solution.

 

July 21st Radio Show – Debt, GOP Rumors and the NLRB

Conservative Radio Show - The Plain, Hard Truth with Rich Mitchell and Michelle RayShow Time: Thursday July 21st, 7pm pacific, 8pm Mountain, 9pm Central, 10pm Eastern

Tune In: Plain, Hard Truth Radio Show

Call in: Be part of the program – call in to the show: (424) 220-1807

Guests: Nicole Pearce and Andrew Staroska from Truth About Bills.

Show Topics: Join Michelle and Rich as they take your calls on the budget crisis, the GOP rumor mill, and the latest on the Boeing/NLRB fiasco.

Recording of the Show:

Listen to internet radio with Rich Mitchell on Blog Talk Radio

Links from the Show:

Allen West Fires Back at Debbie Wasserman Shultz [Email Text and Video]

 

Cut, Cap and Balance Could Pass the Senate

Hear recordings of past shows: CDN On-Air Archives


Obama Administration Goes After Boeing to Protect Unions

Boeing 787Boeing corporation moved a portion of its Dreamliner 787 production line from Washington state to a $750 million South Carolina facility after failure to negotiate a contract with unions. Now that the East Coast facility is just three months from initial production, the Obama administration’s National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has filed what may be the largest labor lawsuit in 50 years against Boeing to prevent the South Carolina plant from coming online.

The federal suit alleges that Boeing built the plant in South Carolina to retaliate against the machinists union for past strikes. The machinist union has gone on strike against Being five times costing billions of dollars to the airplane builder. While opinions vary, Boeing could simply be making a precautionary move to prevent future strikes – a responsible action. The suit would allow the federal government to mandate that the 787 production be done only in Washington.

Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) said, “This is nothing more than a political favor for the unions who are supporting President Obama’s re-election campaign..” And Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) added, “If successful, the NLRB complaint would allow unions to hold a virtual ‘veto’ over business decisions..”.

Boeing commented on the lawsuit calling it “frivolous” and promised to open the South Carolina as scheduled. Strangely, the first hearing will be with a judge that works for the NLRB on June 14th after which the NLRB will review that judges decision.

When examining the progressive side of the argument, it becomes clear why Boeing needed to increase the rate of divestiture in Blue states. California’s business-unfriendly tax structure and union-protectionism cost it an aircraft electronics manufacturing plant for Boeing several years ago – a change that moved jobs to Oklahoma. Further evidence of the rabid attacks from leftist groups can be found at SocialistAlternative.org. In a post entitled “The Boeing Rip-Off” the author makes the argument that creating a better business climate is unnecessary.

Boeing’s demands for a more competitive business environment are in spite of the fact that it does not have a single competitor in the United States. Boeing gobbled up the McDonnell Douglas Corporation, the last competitor in commercial airline manufacturing in the U.S. That leaves Airbus, a French-European company, as its only real competition.

In actuality, there are five major aircraft builders in the world, according to Aviation Knowledge

  1. Airbus
  2. Boeing
  3. Bombardier
  4. Embraer
  5. Tupoloev

Boeing also has to consider the rising star of China, who is growing a mature manufacturing sector at impressive rates. At Wired.com, an article introduces the world to China’s ambitions.

China, perhaps uncomfortable with the thought of an industry it doesn’t completely dominate, is accelerating plans to roll out a home-grown passenger plane to compete with best-selling planes from Boeing and Airbus.

China is not dealing with Unions’ unfair collective bargaining tactics. The short-sightedness of socialism is rearing its ugly head on the West coast through unionization and progressive taxation. The rest of the United States, starving for new jobs, could not be happier.