Posted by Curt on 30 April, 2008 at 9:51 am. 1 comment.

This new ad by Hillary Clinton took quite a bit of guts to make due to the hypocrisy involved:

“Right here over 200 Hoosiers built parts that guided our military’s smart bombs to their targets. They were good jobs, but now, they’re gone to China. And now America’s defense relies on Chinese spare parts. George Bush could have stopped it, but he didn’t. As your president, I will fight to keep good jobs here, and to turn this economy around. I’m Hillary Clinton and I approve this message because American workers should build America’s defense.”

The balls of this woman. She decries the jobs lost to China but fails to mention that it was her husband who rubber stamped the sale. Instead she blames Bush.

If she were president, she says, she’d fight to protect those jobs. It’s just the kind of talk that’s helping her win support from working-class Democrats worried about jobs and paychecks, not to mention their country’s security.

What Clinton never tells in the oft-repeated tale is the role prominent Democrats played in selling the company and its technology to the Chinese. She never mentions that big-time Democratic contributor George Soros helped put together the deal to sell the company, or that the sale was approved by the administration of her husband.

“Hillary Clinton must have been hoping we Hoosiers have short memories,” Ed Dixon of Valparaiso said in a letter to a local newspaper after a recent Clinton visit. “Her husband was president at the time and allowed this to happen.”

“They would have us believe Bush was behind this sale,” added Fred Sliger of Valparaiso in another letter, “when in fact the Clinton administration rubber-stamped this along with the sale of numerous other high-tech secrets to the Chinese. …Let’s get the facts straight.”

The paper then goes into the REAL story of this sale. GM decides to sell the company to a Chinese-American group that includes two Chinese companies and George Soros. Since the company made components for US weaponry the sale had to be approved by the Clinton Administration, which they did after a 30 day review and only after the consortium gave their promise to keep manufacturing in the US. Apparently their word was good enough since nothing was given in writing.

And wouldn’t you know it, the group broke their promise.


The company brought the factory in Valparaiso, Indiana (a French owned company) in 2000 and in 2003 they closed it and moved it to China and the Bush administration did not block the move after a review by the The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Note that the committee has members of the Defense and State Department and they saw nothing wrong with the move.

And the reason for the move? Money:

“The plant closed because it was losing $5 million a year,” said Cox, the former chief executive officer of Magnequench. “The rare earths were Chinese, the technology was Japanese. There were no secrets to give away and we gave none away.”

While the Chinese partners were 60 percent owners after the 1995 purchase from GM, subsequent refinancing reduced the Chinese stake to below 20 percent. To characterize the company as a Chinese company at the time the Valparaiso plant was shut down in 2003 is wrong, said a person then involved in the company.

~~~

Neo magnet production capability could be re-launched in the United States, if a U.S. firm were willing and able to obtain a license from Hitachi, which owns patents connected to the manufacturing process, and able to hire the Americans with the expertise to do the work.

Another geostrategic angle: most of the rare earth elements now used in manufacturing come from China.

“The Chinese government controls the volume of rare earths that are mined (perhaps much like OPEC controls oil),” said one American magnet industry executive.

“Prices have increased greatly in the last year and the underlying feeling by Westerners is that this is due to the control by the Chinese and the fact that they ran the other producers in the U.S. out of business so they can do what they want.”

So while it is sad that this plant closed, its a huge leap to only blame Bush for the transfer.