In addition to violating President Obama’s call in January for a return to civility (to be fair, no one on the left paid any attention to that pronouncement), on Sunday, Jimmy Hoffa told Candy Crowley of CNN that, as Joel Gehrke of the Washington Examiner paraphrases in his headline, “Obama should attack ‘unpatriotic’ Apple:”
HOFFA: I think businesses are sitting on money. Look at Apple. They have $76 billion in their checking account. And they’re spending it.
CROWLEY: Which they are allowed to have.
HOFFA: But they are not doing anything with it. And instead of investing here, everything they do is in China or is in Asia somewhere. And the answer, look at Honda. Honda is building $1 billion plant, and they want to build it in Mexico. This is on the drawing board right now.
CROWLEY: It’s cheaper there.
HOFFA: Why isn’t it — well, we know that. But don’t they have an obligation to America to build it in America, to put people to work here instead of in Mexico? That’s what I believe.
You know, this is really — I think the president should challenge the patriotism of these American corporations that are sitting on the sidelines saying, why do we have high unemployment but I am not going to hire anybody? You know, they have an obligation just like the federal government, just like Obama. We have all got to get into the game. And I don’t see that happening. So the trillions and billions of dollars that they have on the sidelines, they have money, Pfizer and General Electric, they have trillions of dollars overseas, let’s start repatriating that money. Let’s start a program to get America going again.
The problem in America is not that we don’t have enough money. We have got more money than any other country in the world. The problem is American businesses are not spending it and not getting it in the game. That’s how we are going to get America going again.
CROWLEY: I’m hearing tweets across the universe here because — I want to go back. Are you questioning the patriotism of Apple for sitting on money rather than hiring?
HOFFA: Yes, I am.
CROWLEY: Are you?
HOFFA: Yes, I am. What is it with a company that makes — and they sell most of their products here in the United States. I mean, they’re the biggest — Apple, you have got Apple Stores everywhere else.
They have been sitting on that kind of money and every time they do something, they do it in China, they do it somewhere else. There’s something wrong with that. Don’t they have an obligation?
Not really; as Obama said about China on the campaign trail in 2008, “Their ports, their train systems, their airports are vastly superior to us now, which means if you are a corporation deciding where to do business you’re starting to think, ‘Beijing looks like a pretty good option.'” Why should anyone be surprised when a “progressive” company such as Apple takes him up on the suggestion?
In the Washington Examiner, Joel Gehrke replies:
The problem with the union pushing the President to dangle a carrot to companies is that they also have Obama carrying a huge stick in the form of his National Labor Relations Board, which has sued Boeing to close a non-union factory that the airplane manufacturer built in the right-to-work state of South Carolina.
Hoffa continued by calling Apple “unpatriotic” for considering construction of a factory in Mexico. He argued that labor costs are not too high for companies to succeed in the United States:
You can do it here. But the answer is, you have to have the incentive. And so many companies like Mr. Coffee and all of these other companies that have closed and moved to Mexico, they are wrong. They are unpatriotic.
We have got to turn this around and say, hey, we are an American company, we owe an obligation to America, let’s put America back to work.
And with that, Hoffa walked himself into an absurdity, because simultaneously he denied that labor unions have caused business costs to skyrocket, but then admitted that U.S. companies need more “incentive” to keep their operations in the country. And Hoffa talks for a minute as if he wants these companies to have some change of heart and business model, but when he says “we have to turn this around,” clearly he means that President Obama has to do something, presumably through that “program” that Hoffa suggested as part of a “bold plan” from the president.
But hey, by all means, Hoffa should keep up his attack on Apple, whose board presumably voted unanimously in 2008 for Obama, and on which would-be radical environmentalist Al Gore jets in for board meetings.
And for more blue-on-blue warfare, just as presumably Gore can’t be too keen on Hoffa attacking Apple, he’s made it clear that he’s not thrilled with Hoffa’s surrogate in the White House, either:
“Instead of relying on science, President Obama appears to have bowed to pressure from polluters who did not want to bear the cost of implementing new restrictions on their harmful pollution — even though economists have shown that the U.S. economy would benefit from the job creating investments associated with implementing the new technology,” Gore wrote.
“The result of the White House’s action will be increased medical bills for seniors with lung disease, more children developing asthma and the continued degradation of our air quality.”
Gore noted that at the same time Obama was backtracking on smog, “brave and committed activists” were getting arrested in front of the White House as part of ongoing civil disobedience protests against the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline.
No word yet if Al is flying commercial, or if he’s changed his mind and will finally pledge to consume no more energy for use in his residence than the average American household, which he refused to do, when challenged on his mammoth personal carbon footprint in the US Senate in 2007.
Related: Jim Lacy on Gore, “The Moral High Ground,” and how the left’s “‘morally superior’ policies kill millions and impoverish billions.”