Archive for the ‘Caterpillar’ Category

Obama Dead Wrong On Stimulus, Caterpillar Company Jobs, Recovery

March 17, 2009

President Obama said on February 12, 2009, in Peoria, that the stimulus would allow Caterpillar to re-hire workers recently sent home.

Instead, today, March 17, 2009, Caterpillar announced a fresh round of job cuts Tuesday, laying off more than 2,400 employees at five plants in Illinois, Indiana and Georgia.

“Yesterday, Jim [Owens], the head of Caterpillar, said that if Congress passes our plan, this company will be able to rehire some of the folks who were just laid off,” Obama said in Peoria on February 12, 2009.

But when asked if the stimulus could do that, Jim Owens said last February, “I think, realistically, no. The honest reality is we’re probably going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again.”

President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar ... 
President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Ill., Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009.(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

****************

By DANIEL LOVERING, AP Manufacturing Writer

PITTSBURGH – Caterpillar Inc. announced a fresh round of job cuts Tuesday, laying off more than 2,400 employees at five plants in Illinois, Indiana and Georgia as the heavy equipment maker continues to cut costs amid the global economic downturn.

Caterpillar, the world’s largest maker of mining and construction equipment, has seen its sales wither as the sluggish world economy and credit crises weaken demand for its products used to build everything from houses to highways. The company had expanded dramatically in recent years, helped by a building boom in developing countries.

In response to the worsening conditions, Caterpillar in January announced job cuts that will ultimately eliminate 20,000 positions. It also said it would slash executive compensation by up to 50 percent and offer buyouts to about 25,000 U.S.-based employees. Caterpillar, which employs about 112,000 people worldwide, said it had imposed a global hiring freeze.

In the latest cuts, the Peoria, Ill.-based company said 2,365 support and management workers had been laid off for at least six months and 89 workers had been let go permanently. Some 245 of the 2,365 layoffs had been announced previously.

Among the affected workers are 1,726 people at plants in East Peoria and Aurora, Ill.; 439 at a plant in Lafayette, Ind., and 289 in Jefferson and Griffin, Ga.

Shares of Caterpillar slid 32 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $26.10 in late morning trading.

Related (From Feb 13, 2009)
Obama Dead Wrong On Stimulus in Peoria, Caterpillar Remarks

 Obama Says Stimulus Means Re-Hiring; CEO Says No Can Do

In this Feb. 10, 2009 file photo, Caterpillar earth moving equipment ... 
In this Feb. 10, 2009 file photo, Caterpillar earth moving equipment is lined up in Wahoo, Neb., Tuesday, Feb.10, 2009. The U.S. trade deficit plunged in January to the lowest level in six years as a deepening recession cut demand for imported goods at an even faster rate than exports.(AP Photo/Nati Harnik, file)

Stimulus: “Buy American” Retained; Sure To Anger International Partners

February 14, 2009

Congress approved protectionist measures in a $789 billion stimulus bill Friday that U.S. trading partners have warned could spark a trade war.

Associated Press

The bill, however, left the Obama administration some room to maneuver to appease other countries who say it will benefit U.S. companies unfairly.

The stimulus bill was approved by the House Friday afternoon and by the Senate later in the evening. It now goes to President Barack Obama who is expected to sign into law quickly.

Major partners, including the European Union and Canada, say the legislation favoring U.S. steel, iron and manufactured goods for government projects could undermine pledges by the leaders of major economies not to resort to perfectionism during the world economic downturn.

Requirements known as “Buy American” were softened as the bill progressed through Congress and after strong criticism from abroad. Senate and House negotiators agreed to a version that would require the government not to violate trade agreements when implementing the law.

The bill also allows the Obama administration and state governments to waive requirements to favor U.S. companies if they deem it in the U.S. public interest and if they publish a justification.

The dispute has put Obama in a difficult position. While campaigning last year, he raised questions whether U.S. trade agreements contained sufficient protection for labor and environmental standards. He has warned recently, however, about antagonizing trading partners and has made clear that passage of the overall stimulus bill is needed urgently to mend the U.S. economy.

In several television interviews last week, he said the stimulus package should not include protectionist language that could trigger a trade war. But now that it does, he is likely to sign it anyway. The measures appear, however, to give the administration discretion about how to implement spending decisions, given the requirement of meeting trade obligations.

Read the rest:
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/elections/2009/
02/13/congress-approves-protectionist-measure-
spark-trade-war/

*****************

President Obama visited the Caterpillar factory in East Peoria, Illinois this last week.

Caterpillar says it pays $100,000 in tariffs on each piece of heavy equipment it exports to Columbia, because the U.S. Congresss has failed to pass the free trade agreement….

Now with this “buy American” provision in the stimulus it is likely the U.S. will find trouble with other trading partners…

Related:
 Pastor Obama Continues With Holy Stimulus, But The Congregation Isn’t Buying

Why Europe No Longer In Obama Camp Over Stimulus
.
China’s leader Hu Jintao cautioned President Obama about the “buy American” provision in the economic stimulus plan during a phone conversation.

Related:
CNN:
http://edition.cnn.com/2009/POLITIC
S/02/05/senate.buy.american/index.html

 “Buy American” Sounds Good; Carries An Unbearable Down Side

Obama Caught Between World Leaders, Congress, U.S. Voters on “Buy American”

 Dallas Federal Reserve Chief, China, Germany All Call Protectionism “Death”

China announced that President Hu Jintao, seen here in 2008, ...
President Hu Jintao of China (AFP/File/Louisa Gouliamaki)

Made in china.jpg

Stimulus Proves Obama (And The NYT) Have No Idea What “Bipartisanship” Means; Or Could Care Less

February 14, 2009

Either the President of the United States and the New York Times have no clue how lawmakers have defined “bipartisanship” for decades, which is possible givebn their youth and inexperience; or the president and the NYT really believe that bipartisanship is all talk and photo ops after the legislation was concieved by one party alone.  In the 1970s when I came to Congress as a staffer, my elected boss used to say, “If I’m going to be one of the fathers of this legislation I’d like to be in the room at the time of conception and not just at the birth…”

The NYT is obviously biased on this and has no idea what bipartisanship is or is just lying to its readers….

A book on how to achieve good legislation through bipartisanship would have to feature how NOT to to go about it the Obama, Pelosi, Reid way….and then use the New York Times to spin a feeling that bipartisanship was tried and the Republicans rejected the offer….

The president’s “outrach” of bipartisanship is like purchased sex with a working girl; it is sleezy and meaningless.  Maybe he needs some chachki toys or aluminum key chains with little hand painted “Air Force One” or “White House” creations to hand out to Republicans…..  Or maybe a little yellow tractor from Caterpillar on a key chain….Or Abe Lincoln to remind one of two great presidents….

***********

By Peter Baker
The New York Times

On the day before the big vote, President Obama took a freshman Republican member of Congress aboard Air Force One to visit Illinois. Before an audience in Representative Aaron Schock’s district, Mr. Obama praised him as “a very talented young man” and expressed “great confidence in him to do the right thing for the people of Peoria.”

But when Mr. Schock stood up on the House floor on Friday, less than 24 hours later, his view of the right thing for the people of Peoria was to vote against the most important initiative of Mr. Obama’s young presidency.

“They know that this bill is not stimulus,” Mr. Schock, 27, said of his constituents. “They know that this bill will not do anything to create long-term, sustained economic growth.”

Whatever it will do for the economy, the legislation that passed Friday will clearly not do anything to create long-term, sustained bipartisan reconciliation. Not one Republican voted for Mr. Obama’s plan in the House and just three voted for it in the Senate as it headed to final passage on Friday night. The party-line schism, coupled with the withdrawal on Thursday of a Republican senator, Judd Gregg , as a nominee to Mr. Obama’s cabinet, made clear the futility so far of the president’s effort to move Washington toward post-partisanship.

Their unrequited overtures to Republicans over the past several weeks taught Mr. Obama and his aides some hard lessons. Advisers concluded that they allowed the measure of bipartisanship to be defined as winning Republican votes rather than bringing civility to the debate, distracting attention from what have otherwise been major legislative victories. Although Mr. Obama vowed to keep reaching out to Republicans, advisers now believe the environment will probably not change in coming months.

Read the rest:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/1
4/us/politics/14obama.html?_r=1&hp

********************

It seems to us at Peace and Freedom that the New York Times doesn’t know what “bipartisansip” means.

We went to a congressional staff in the early 1970s and learned back then that bipartisanship means:

(1)   At the start of every piece of legislation, both parties meet to discuss, share ideas and formulate, at least conceptually, new law.

(2) That both parties treat the other side with dignity and respect, sharing ideas in order to get the best for the American people.

(3)  Both sides tell the truth and neither tries to seize the high ground and gloat over the other before the media.

In the case of this stimulus, President Obama talked a good game of bipartisanship but he was clueless on how to achieve it.

His Williamsburg, Va., spa speech and his evening press conference in the White House were both partisan speeches….which included ugly distortions and lies.

Nancy Pelosi shut out Republican input at the start of the process to build the stimulus bill and minutes before voting on final passage there were still complaints that the bill had been “hidden” from lawmakers and the American people intentioanlly by the Democratic side.

Mr. Obama’s personal “bipartisan outreach” consisted of:

–“I won.”

–Efforts to give “goodies” to Republicans like a Super Bowl party, rides on Air Force One and a cocktail party at the White House as if they could be bought like children at Christams.

–“Cram this down throats” at the spa in Williamsburg.

–Campaign-style events at Peoria, Fort Myers, and Elkhart…

–Photo op sessions with Republicans in the House and then the Senate.

–Not one “roll up the sleeves” and negotiate session with both parties at the White House. The pseudo president in the movie “Dave” did a better job of this that Mr. Obama…..

–A big lie at Peoria: “Yesterday, Jim [Owens], the head of Caterpillar, said that if Congress passes our plan, this company will be able to rehire some of the folks who were just laid off,” Obama said in Peoria.

But when asked if the stimulus could do that, Owens said, “I think, realistically, no. The honest reality is we’re probably going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again.”

Related:
Obama Dead Wrong On Stimulus in Peoria, Caterpillar Remarks

**********************

“Mr. Obama’s victory feels more than a bit like defeat. The stimulus bill looks helpful but inadequate, especially when combined with a disappointing plan for rescuing the banks. And the politics of the stimulus fight have made nonsense of Mr. Obama’s postpartisan dreams.”

That’s from Paul Krugman of the New York Times, a big Obama believer and one who would have like a much bigger stimulus.
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/0
2/13/opinion/13krugman.html?_r=1

***********************

Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer said, “Obama contradicted everything he said he stood for” during the process of making the stimulus.

“He did not work toward bipartianship and got not one conservative Republican vote.”

Krauthammer said “the president showed he would enact legislation by ramming it down throats,” a reference to the language President Obama used at last Monday’s press conference.

Related:
Stimulus: “Obama is popular but has no clout”

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“The longer a piece of garbage lays out in the sun the worse it stinks,” said Republican Representative John Culberson (R-TX), refeering to the Obama stimulus.  “That’s why the bill was hidden and  kept off the Internet.”

“This is a crime of deceit put upon the American people,” he said.

“This bill was intentionally hidden from lawmakers and the public.”

“This is one of the largest outrages ever committed,” said.

“Nobody read this bill before it was passed,” he said.

GOP Rep Says Stimulus is Garbage, Details “Intentionally Hidden from Lawmakers, American Voters”

***************

Bill Sammon, a frequent talking head on Fox News, said that the Democrats and their drive for overspending and the president’s constant foot on the feel good accelerator “has unwittingly given the Republicans their mojo back.”

Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire abruptly withdrew his nomination as commerce secretary Thursday, citing “irresolvable conflicts” with President Barack Obama’s handling of the economic stimulus and 2010 census.

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And, I find it difficult to swallow the president’s constant snuggling with Abraham Lincoln.  I just don’t buy it and here’s why.

During his Monday evening news conference didn’t President Obama characterize the stimulus debate as a talk between those who had a solution (Democrats) and those who had no solution (Republicans)?

I think so.  He threw bipartisanship and unity away.  There was never much of an effort to seek Republican input and the president’s own words show us that….

Then today he urged all Americans to unite as Lincoln would have us do.  Forgive and forget.  We all serve under one flag.

You know what?  I gagged.

The president and his pals want to run the census, spend all the money in the treasury, and change the course of America in the direction of socialism.

And they have made it pretty clear they don’t want to hear from the “Republicans who got us into this.”

“I won” a few weeks ago is now, today, on Lincoln’t Birthday, “Why can’t you guys unite behind me?” 

U.S. President Barack Obama waves from Air Force One in Springfield, ...

The shrinking president…

President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar ... 
President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Ill., Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009.(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel gestures prior ... 
Leadership, bipartisanship, honesty, integrity and clout?  Incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel gestures prior to the inauguration ceremony of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States, in Washington, January 20, 2009.(Jim Young – UNITED STATES/Reuters)

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/13/the-
house-dems-who-voted-no-the-senate-vo
te-underway/

http://righttruth.typepad.com/right_tr
uth/2009/02/800-billion-in-welfare-sp
ending.html

Obama Dead Wrong On Stimulus in Peoria, Caterpillar Remarks

February 13, 2009

“I voted against the stimulus,” said Rep. Aaron Schock, R-Ill., who represents the town of Peoria, Ill.

“That’s what the workers at Caterpillar asked me to do.”

House Votes Stimulus: 7 Dems, All Republicans Against

President Obama said yesterday in Peoria that the stimulus would allow Caterpillar to re-hire workers recently sent home.

“Yesterday, Jim [Owens], the head of Caterpillar, said that if Congress passes our plan, this company will be able to rehire some of the folks who were just laid off,” Obama said in Peoria.

But when asked if the stimulus could do that, Owens said, “I think, realistically, no. The honest reality is we’re probably going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again.”

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/13/hous
e-gop-holds-the-line-nancys-leaving-on-a-j
et-plane/

http://logicalelephant.com/2009/02/13/
obama%E2%80%99s-bullying-tactics-backfire/

Obama Says Stimulus Means Re-Hiring; CEO Says No Can Do

February 13, 2009

Barack Obama’s love and faith in the stimulus is a lot greater than just about anyone else’s.

Related:
Pastor Obama Continues With Holy Stimulus, But The Congregation Isn’t Buying

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BY KAREN TRAVERS AND JAKE TAPPER
ABC News

At a Caterpillar Inc. plant in Peoria, Ill., today, President Obama said that his proposed economic stimulus would allow the company’s CEO to rehire recently laid-off employees. But the head of the company said he will have to fire more workers before he can rehire anyone who has been let go.

President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar ... 
President Barack Obama addresses employees at the Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Ill., Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009.(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Obama has said twice in the past two days that Caterpillar CEO James Owens indicated his company would be able to rehire some of the 20,000 recently laid-off employees.

“Yesterday, Jim, the head of Caterpillar, said that if Congress passes our plan, this company will be able to rehire some of the folks who were just laid off,” Obama said today in Peoria.

But when asked today if the stimulus could do that, Owens said, “I think, realistically, no. The honest reality is we’re probably going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again.”

Read the rest:
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story
?id=6866995&page=1

Pastor Obama Continues With Holy Stimulus, But The Congregation Isn’t Buying

February 13, 2009

Minister in Chief Barack Obama’s high sounding “hope” has crashed to earth.  When he realized that the economy was even worse than he first thought, he called it a “catastrophe.”

And it is a catastrophe for millions of workers across the nation and the world who have lost or who will still lose their jobs.

But now the optimism of Obama crashes into the reality.

And even his famed ability to excite a crowd is no longer enough.

The congregation is walking out.

At a stump-style gathering at a Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Ill., reporters said the disillusionment in the crowd was palpable.

Like a minister before a flock disgruntled, or the coach before an 0-11 team, Obama couldn’t really excite, inspire or be totally truthful.

At the end of the event and away from the crowd, Caterpiller Chief Executive Jim Owens said, “The reality is we’ll probably have to have more layoffs before we can start hiring again.” he said.

More darkness before redemption.

And that CEO’s assesssment is now widespread if not universal.

Caterpillar says it pays $100,000 in tariffs on each piece of heavy equipment it exports to Columbia, because the U.S. Congresss has failed to pass the free trade agreement….

Related From The Los Angeles Times:
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationwo
rld/nation/la-na-obama-peoria13-2009
feb13,0,7057318.story