EconomicPolicyJournal.com: There can hardly be a more frightening person to be President Obama's pet CEO than GE Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Immelt. Yet, that is exactly who has the President's ear at the White House.
It is becoming apparent that GE, rather than "bringing good things to life", has a unique ability to cozy up to government, massage regulations and bring dangerous toxins into our lives---and I mean seriously dangerous.
NYT now tells us about the containment vessels at the damaged nuclear power plants in Japan are manufactured by GE:
...the type of containment vessel and pressure suppression system used in the failing reactors at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi plant — and in 23 American reactors at 16 plants — is physically less robust, and it has long been thought to be more susceptible to failure in an emergency than competing designs.
G.E. began making the Mark 1 boiling water reactors in the 1960s, marketing them as cheaper and easier to build — in part because they used a comparatively smaller and less expensive containment structure.
GE is also heavily involved with the new CFL light bulbs we will all be forced to buy starting in 2014. According to a footnote to a Tim Carney piece on GE, and do note that this type footnote means GE corporates got to Carney, or his paper, to tone down what was in Carney's column. But look at the dirt that was left in the "tone down":
The original version of this article stated that GE "lobbied to kill the incandescent bulb." This was imprecise. In 2007 GE opposed proposals to explicitly outlaw incandescents. Instead, the company advocated simply setting efficiency standards for all bulbs, regardless of what type of bulb. This had the known effect of outlawing all traditional incandescents, but leaving open the possibility of high-efficiency incandescents.
Bottom line: Setting aside the weasel words that GE likely demanded be amended to the column, GE for all practical purposes was for the new CFL bulbs (which they manufacture) that killed the incandescents.
So what is the big deal about the new bulbs, aside from the fact that they are more expensive and some question whether they really are more efficient? According to Congressman Ted Poe, the EPA requires you to evacuate children and everyone else from a room where you break one of these light bulbs, then open windows to ventilate the room for 15 minutes, and leave the room yourself. You see these wonderful new bulbs contain the very poisonous element mercury.
Concerns about mercury's toxicity have led to mercury thermometers and sphygmomanometers being largely phased out in clinical environments. Yet, the bastards at GE advocated "efficiency standards" that will result in us all having these mercury micro-dirty bombs in all rooms of our houses.
Great stuff you are bringing to life, there, GE.