Apparently Lou Dobbs is terribly upset with the National Labor Relations Board's decision to try to stop Boeing from punishing their unions for striking in Washington by moving their jobs to South Carolina, but he loves "free market capitalism" when
April 30, 2011

Apparently Lou Dobbs is terribly upset with the National Labor Relations Board's decision to try to stop Boeing from punishing their unions for striking in Washington by moving their jobs to South Carolina, but he loves "free market capitalism" when it comes to Exxon Mobil's ability to rake in record breaking profits.

As the Hill reported -- Exxon posts $10.7B first-quarter profit:

Oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp. reported a $10.65 billion first-quarter profit Thursday, a 69 percent jump from the same period last year that will likely fuel political battles over U.S. oil-and-gas policy.

The company is benefiting from higher refining margins, but also a surge in the price of oil that has led to $4 per gallon gas prices in the U.S. It's also made oil companies a rich political target for the White House.

Exxon’s profits are its highest since its record in 2008, when it posted profits of $10.9 billion in the first quarter, $11.7 billion in the second quarter and $14.8 billion in the third quarter (and $45 billion for the year). [...]

But the liberal Center for American Progress is holding a call for reporters later Thursday that will take a very different view of the industry earnings.

The group parlayed the profits into a shot at GOP budget plans.

“As the first quarter profits from the big five oil companies roll in, so do the $40 billion in taxpayer subsidies to these already highly lucrative oil companies through the next decade — preserved in Rep. Paul Ryan’s 2012 budget by gutting $30 billion from Medicare,” the center said in an advisory previewing the call. Ryan (R-Wis.) chairs the House Budget Committee.

“While Big Oil rakes in windfall profit margins, they do nothing to ease the record-high prices facing American consumers at the pump and slowing our economic recovery,” the group added.

There's that "free market" for ya, subsidized by our tax dollars. Think Progress' Wonk Room has more on the NLRB's complaint -- Gov. Haley Defends Boeing’s Union-Busting: ‘It’s Called Capitalism’:

The National Labor Relations Board last week filed a complaint against the airplane manufacturer Boeing, noting that, according to public pronouncements by the company’s officials, the construction of a new plant in South Carolina was intended as retribution against workers in Washington who have engaged in a pair of strikes over the last six years. One senior Boeing official, for instance, said during an interview, “The overriding factor [in moving to South Carolina] was not the business climate. And it was not the wages we’re paying today. It was that we cannot afford to have a work stoppage, you know, every three years.”

Under national labor law, retaliating against workers for striking is illegal union-busting, but several Republican lawmakers have attacked the NLRB and the Obama administration for initiating the complaint. “This is nothing more than a political favor for the unions who are supporting President Obama’s re-election campaign,” said Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC). “The Obama administration is now dictating where companies are allowed to create new jobs,” wrote former Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-MN). [...]

As the Washington Post’s Steve Pearlstein wrote, “given the public statements of Boeing officials, there is nothing radical about the NLRB’s decision”; the NLRB is simply trying to enforce worker protections that are already law. And, contrary to Haley’s pronouncement, the NLRB made clear that “The complaint does not seek closure of the South Carolina facility, nor does it prohibit Boeing from assembling planes there.”

Haley also neglects to mention that South Carolina gave Boeing nearly $1 billion to open its plant in South Carolina (even as Boeing systemically dodges taxes). Nor is this Haley’s first foray into union-busting; she named a union-busting attorney to head South Carolina’s Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation for the express purpose of preventing unions from trying to unionize Boeing’s South Carolina plant. Boeing donated to both Haley’s election campaign and her inaugural gala.

The laws that the NLRB is seeking to enforce are necessary to ensure that corporations can’t threaten to move production and fire workers who exercise their right to organize. Haley’s view — and that of the rest of the Republicans attacking Obama and the NLRB — is that corporations should be allowed to ignore the law and workers’ rights if it will increase their profits.

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