Caterpillar is making a lot of money on exports. The company is a beneficiary of U.S. trade policy which causes our trade deficit, but provides Caterpillar a surplus of exports.
Their lobbying and media relations might is immense, and paying dividends.
The latest example is a NY Times article in which reporterAndrew Kramer is shilling for them. Entitled “U.S. Companies Worry About Effect of Russia Joining W.T.O.,” Kramer takes dictation from those companies, (rather than committing an act of journalism)…
Major American exporters to Russia, like Caterpillar, Deere and General Electric, are worried about the potential impact on their business from the Congressional inaction [on Permanent Normalize Trade Relations for Russia]. … Exporting companies in Europe, Asia and the United States eagerly await open access to a population of 142 million people with growing incomes and an expanding middle class.
Caterpillar sells heavy equipment around the world. They apparently have “worries”. I have worries, but the NY Times does not report on them. Caterpillar wanted the Peru trade agreement really badly, to sell mining equipment to Peru. They got it. Russia is a big natural resources state, which is again a big market for the company selling equipment to harvest those natural resources. But America suffers with a massive trade deficit, which looks like this.
According to OpenSecrets.org, Caterpillar has massively increased its political contributions in recent years. (See chart below).
But Caterpillar’s bigger influence is through trade associations that push these “export market opening” deals regardless of trade deficit effects. The company is on the Executive Committee of the Business Roundtable, the Board of Directors of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and their CEO is Vice Chairman of the National Association of Manufacturers. Those three organizations spent $146.1 million on lobbying in 2009.
I can assure you that CPA did not spend that much money on lobbying. Imagine if we had…
I’m happy if companies like Caterpillar make money, but not at the expense of our country.