Tamron Hall was joined by her MSNBC colleague Dylan Ratigan on Wednesday's edition of "News Nation" in condemning some members of corporate America for the way they have "demonized" the Obama administration. That slight of American businesses came during a dicussion of President Hu Jintao's U.S visit, in which Ratigan remarked that President Obama's greatest challenge will not be dealing with China, but American businesses who have invested heavily in China.
"There's a huge profit engine" in companies doing much of their manufacturing in China, Ratigan opined. To re-balance America's trade relationship with China, he added, would induce some conflict with major American companies.
"When we talk about re-balancing that trade relationship...that is a threat to the profitability of major American corporations who have developed investments in China, and they have a big voice with the President."
Hall then concluded her segment in saying that "the state dinner later tonight, some say... is about the business community that has in some ways demonized this administration, saying that it's anti-business, and this is an effort to reach out to them as well."
It simply didn't occur to either Ratigan or Hall that there are legitimate policy concerns American business leaders have with the economic policies of the Obama administration.
For instance, the equipment-maker Caterpillar reported just before the health care bill – that Obama and the Democrats touted so highly – was passed that the legislation would cost the company $100 million in the first year alone. Microchip maker Intel's CEO Paul Otellini pointed to the onerous taxes and regulations businesses currently have to deal with in America, but not in the rest of the world.
A transcript of the segment, which aired on January 19 at 2:38 p.m. EST, is as follows:
DYLAN RATIGAN, MSNBC anchor: The biggest challenge, I think, for this President, actually is not going to be dealing with China. It's going to be dealing with major U.S. corporations like Apple, like Caterpillar, like General Electric –
TAMRON HALL: Some of the business people he met with –
RATIGAN: Precisely – who have invested heavily in China, and just as China benefits tremendously because of their game-rigging, because companies like Caterpillar are so heavily invested in China, they are also benefitting from that. So there's a huge profit engine – again, Apple, employing near-slave labor to make I-phones at FoxCon, Caterpillar – basically doing a huge percentage of its manufacturing in China. When we talk about re-balancing that trade relationship, whether it's reciprocity or the currency, that is a threat to the profitability of major American corporations who have developed investments in China, and they have a big voice with this President.
HALL: Well this visit from the Chinese President, the State Dinner later tonight, some say this was actually, as you point out, not about China, but it is about the business community that has in some ways demonized this administration, saying that it's anti-business, and this is an effort to reach out to them as well.