The Spokesman-Review’s Oct. 27 “Boeing looks south of border” report describing Boeing’s efforts to motivate its Inland Northwest suppliers to outsource jobs to Mexico, shines a well-deserved light on this outfit’s shabby duplicity.
In late 2010, Boeing, largely via political maneuvering, succeeded in voiding the U.S. Air Force refueling tanker contract initially awarded to partnering competitors EADS and Northrop Grumman. Washington politicians (Rep. Norm Dicks, et al.) waxed angry about the inappropriateness of having a French (!) company make off with jobs rightfully belonging to Americans. The $35 billion contract was subsequently awarded the following February to Boeing.
Sen. Patty Murray hailed the final award as “a major victory for the American workers, the American aerospace industry and America’s military.”
Maybe not so much. Besides embracing shameless corporate jingoism when technical merit falls short, the Boeing playbook also apparently recognizes appropriate times to inveigh against outsourcing American jobs, and also other times when American workers should just suck it up and take a back seat to Boeing’s bottom line.
Perhaps food for thought next time Boeing demands further Washington concessions in order to continue blessing us with its presence.