David Stockman calls Jeff Immelt a “crony capitalist”

Posted in Permanent Fail at 1:11 pm by George Smith

Dylan Ratigan on MSNBC was worth a cynical laugh just a few minutes ago.

David Stockman, Ronald Reagan’s old Director of the Office of Management and Budget, was a guest and near the end of the show he lit inot General Electric’s Jeff Immelt, calling him a “crony capitalist” on the telephone crying to Bush Sec’y of the Treasury Henry Paulson for a government bailout of Wall Street.

This tableau comes from good boy Andrew Ross Sorkin’s Too Big to Fail, now in movie form on HBO.

General Electric’s GE Capital division had gotten into the same toxic asset trouble as the rest of the Wall Street titans and the book (or at least the movie) have him on the phone with Paulson demanding a rescue of the system after the collapse of Lehman Brothers has caused a domino effect on Wall Street and runs on the investment giants.

Now Immelt is more famous as the CEO of GE, the country’s biggest corporate tax evader. And as one of the leader’s of President Obama’s Jobs and Economy advisory group who, last week, offered as an unemployment solution the boosting of tourism and encouraging more out-of-work people to return to re-education camp enroll in community college.

Immelt, in other words, is a major annoyance, a corporate enemy of the middle class, if average Americans know of him at all. (He’s a beneficiary of my Lloyd Blankfein Rule which stipulates your head is safe from the noose as long as most of the people don’t know who you are).

Paradoxically, GE’s p.r. arm, in an effort to make people feel good about the company, is pushing commercials featuring the company’s investment and financial services arm, GE Capital.

Reader J points out a belated article at the Register on Apple, Google and other big American companies demanding lobbying for a tax holiday on their overseas cash reserves, dangling the blackmail of “job creation” if they get a free pass to bring it back into the United States. (Aside: It’s difficult to muster up much personal enthusiasm for a Reg piece like this since the publication decided to up and ignore me after many years of contribution.)

Anyway, if you read this blog you know tax holidays for US corporations are just bribes. Bad bribes, actually, which don’t result in any of the benefit in job creation those who wish to be bribed promise.

Like, yeah, Apple — which produces all its iKit in every poorer places in the interior of China — is going to create lots of jobs in the US. Sure. Yeah, I hear they’ll be hiring hundreds of thousands of little nerd associates for the Apple stores real soon now.

Come to think of it, don’t read the Register piece. It points to a video the New York Times has made on tax avoidance and repatriation matters.

My video on GE is much much better. Plus, you get a good song for free.

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