When the media have bothered to cover John Kerry’s “Benedict Arnold companies” hypocrisy at all, they have tended only to discuss the outsourcing and off-shoring of HJ Heinz & Co., a firm with which he has only a tangential relationship through his wife.
And why not? The condiment conglomerate is an easy target. They’re a more-or-less Republican outfit whose political action committee and big shot executives have given more to President Bush and friends than to Kerry anyway. If you were inclined toward charity for the Kerry for President campaign, as too much of the mainstream press is, why not make HJ Heinz the goat?
But the media has missed a bigger story about Sen. Everyone-Is-Stupid-Except-Me. Leave aside for a moment his holdings in the Pennsylvania Catsup concern. Even a cursory glance at John Kerry’s most recent Personal Financial Disclosure forms (filed in 2003) shows Ted Kennedy’s more liberal, junior partner is deeply invested and has personally profited from the outsourcing phenomena that haunts corporate America.
We have cross-referenced Kerry’s holdings of publicly traded assets with Lou Dobbs’ worst outsource offenders list. Herewith are the results. Kerry invests in the following outsourcers:
BristoMyers Squibb, Medtronics, Proctor & Gamble, SBC Communications, Verizon, Suntrust Banks, ExxonMobil Corp., Intel, Microsoft, 3M, General Electric, Wyeth, Citigroup, BellSouth, American Express, Monsanto, Emerson Electric, Mellon Bank, USAA, AT&T, Comcast, Bear Sterns, Pfizer, Ingerson-Rand, Anheuser Busch, Automatic Data Processing, Bank of America, Becton Dickson, Chevron Texaco, Electronic Data Systems, Equifax, Goldman Sachs, Hershey Foods, Home Depot, IBM, JP Morgan, Johnson & Johnson, Oracle, Pepsico, Sun Microsystems, Target, Texas Instruments, Veritas Software.
At least one of these companies, Automatic Data Processing (ADP), is itself a corporate outsourcing agency. They brag on their website, “At ADP, we continue to develop innovative products and services to help our clients save valuable time… make the most of their employees and resources… and boost their bottom line. This solutions-oriented approach has helped us become the world’s leading provider of computerized transaction processing, data communications and information-based business solutions.”
Much of that processing, communicating, and solution-ing is done in India, of course, at the expense of American workers. So, how does the man who routinely promises to “shut down any incentive, any reward or any kind of benefit for any Benedict Arnold company or CEO that takes American jobs overseas and sticks the American people with the bill” sleep at night?
Maybe he has come to the conclusion that outsourcing is a legitimate business practice that improve corporate bottom lines and increase shareholder value. Which, in turn increases investment. Which frees up capital for other companies that use the capital to expand and create more jobs all over the world, especially in America.
The real story here is not that John Kerry is a hypocritical, do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do liberal. That isn’t headline news.
What’s surprising is that even an unreconstructed Seventies liberal can see the beauty of the free market system.