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Eric Lipton, Washington correspondent for The New York Times, discusses the WikiLeaks cables that reveal the U.S. diplomatic role in selling Boeing to the rest of the world.
richard johnson -- 1. if you are going to associate boeing w american prosperity then you must also associate it with war, since it and lockheed are in spots one and two for military billions, being taxpayers' top contractors for at least a decade....I for one would prefer a more peaceful country that admittedly was in a weaker position to purchase crap.
2. "if france does it then we should do it too" is, well, not the most compelling argument to do something (being polite). Although it must have been fun to trot out that argument, must have been in the back of the drawer!
I'm more surprised and saddened that this information is being treated by the public -- let alone the media -- as revelatory news. What the #$%@ do people think all those Brooks Bros. suits are moving around for over there? ;-) To get Japanese people to eat uninspected American beef, that's what! etc.
In fact strict enforcement of the FCPA is often used as the best articulation there is of American moral leadership around the world. That single act vastly improved conditions for many businesses and people, and gives Americans much to be proud of. Doubt you'd find much argument countering this position, from a moral pov, from those in the field.
Boeing is the single largest American exporter, so a lot of highly paid American jobs and arguably American prosperity, depend on their ability to sell airplanes abroad. I don't have any quibble with our diplomats getting down and dirty with the likes of a France, which does not have a Foreign Corrupt Practices act and where in fact bribes to foreign-government officials are tax-deductible business expenses. You have to compete on their terms, so long as it is not illegal or unethical.
How about the Boeing ad on PBS during the NewsHour (and on NBC Sunday morning during Meet the Press) where they say "THIS IS WHO WE ARE" and they hae actual servicemen declaring Boeing 'protects America.' I have alway thought those ads cross the line between politics and private for profit companies.
This seems like such a non-story. Isn't this what commercial attachés do in the diplomatic corp?
What is wrong with this activity. Would you rather not have the jobs Brian??
after Citizen United, I guess I can say is that I'm glad it was an American company at least.
So American diplomats want the world to buy American products. There should be no surprise there.
The surprise is that no one noticed the irony: that the vast majority of products American consumers buy are "Made in China" or "Assembled in Mexico".
If the choice for the State Dept. is to get taken out back behind NPR HQ or out back behind the HQ of America's military-industrial complex, I'd pick the former too.
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