Ed Driscoll

Two GEs In One!

A General Electric plant in Fort Edward, New York will be moving its operation to Florida next year to take advantage of that state’s much more business-friendly local economy, AP reports:

When General Electric moves jobs from its capacitor plant in this Hudson River town next year, worker Mark Rock figures he might have to leave, too.

About 200 jobs will head south as soon as September when GE sends local operations to Florida to cut costs. While New York has had successes in the constant geographical tug of war for jobs, manufacturing jobs like these have been dwindling for decades. People in this area south of the Adirondack Mountains are the latest to wonder what comes next.

“The high-paying jobs that we have now in the area are going to shrink,” said Rock, a 41-year-year-old married father of two. “If I don’t find something making at least 20 bucks an hour in New York state, then I’m skipping town.”

The loss of manufacturing jobs is a national trend, but New York has felt the sting more than some other states. Paul Blackley, an economics professor at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, said New York state lost 42 percent of manufacturing jobs from 1990 through 2006. Over the same period, Florida lost 18 percent.

Blackley said there’s no single reason for New York’s drop, but business costs and an older infrastructure likely play a role.

“I think your tax climate, your labor costs, your old capital are probably three of the biggest factors, not only in this specific move, but a lot of the moves that you see out of New York state,” he said.

I’m not sure why the corporation is moving its plant, since until very recently, GE owned a cable TV opinion network devoted to arguing for increased regulations, higher taxes and higher labor costs on a 24/7 basis, using some of the crudest language possible to make their case. Shouldn’t the corporation revel in the anti-business climate it helped to create?

And while GE has since divested itself of NBC, the Washington Free Beacon rounds us the year’s “best” MSNBC clips for your “pleasure.” As the WFB warns, it’s “Ugly Stuff,” needless to say.