Open Letter to President Obama on the Nomination of Elizabeth Warren
by Ralph Nader
Dear President Obama:
An interesting contrast is playing out at the White House these days-between your expressed praise of General Electric’s CEO, Jeffrey R. Immelt and the silence regarding the widely desired nomination of Elizabeth Warren to head the new Consumer Financial Regulatory Bureau within the Federal Reserve.
On one hand, you promptly appointed Mr. Immelt to be the chairman of the President’s Council on Jobs and Competitive, while letting him keep his full time lucrative position as CEO of General Electric (The Corporate State Expands). At the announcement, you said that Mr. Immelt “understands what it takes for America to compete in the global economy.”
Did you mean that he understands how to avoid all federal income taxes for his company’s $14.2 billion in profits last year, while corralling a $3.2 billion benefit? Or did you mean that he understands how to get a federal bailout for GE Capital and its reckless exposure to risky debt? Or could you have meant that GE knows how to block unionization of its far flung workers here and abroad? Perhaps Mr. Immelt can share with you GE’s historical experience with lucrative campaign contributions, price-fixing, pollution and those nuclear reactors that are giving people fits in Japan and worrying millions of Americans here living or working near similar reactors.