|Photo Credit-U.S. House Republican
The ‘job creators’ US GOP leadership
want to protect, aren’t creating many,
if any, jobs in America.
The second Great Recession beginning in 2007, has underscored a harsh reality that many of the nations’ largest companies have engaged in a game of deep layoffs spree practices, instead of re-hiring America’s workers.
Penned as ‘Bloody Monday’, on January 26, 2009, over 60,000 American workers lost their jobs at large private corporations of General Motors, Home Depot, Sprint-Nextel and Microsoft, according to an article on MSN Money. By the end of January 2009, more than 187,550 working Americans, in total, lost their jobs.
Our nations’ financial plutocracy board known as Wall Street, routinely awards the elimination of jobs in large numbers, for the sake of private sector ‘cost cuts’. Ironically, many private sectors CEO’s have increased their exit parachute bonus packages, by placing American workers in unemployment lines.
In today’s employment market, some human resources offices, are habitually hiding behind job advertisements stating ‘must be employed to apply’. By engaging in this undetectable practice, a tangible effort exist to further downsize American workers’ wages and benefits.
For these highly questionable and borderline discriminatory actions against American’s workers, scores of private industry CEO’s — i.e. -‘the job-creators– collect additional monetary awards such as stock options in their exit parachutes packages.
Instead of ‘job creators’, the more accurate term for many mega-sized companies private industry CEO’s, would be ‘job killers’.
Let’s review 10 of the nations’ largest job killers, over past years:
Al Dunlap-Scott Paper
Al Dunlap was nicknamed “Chainsaw Al” for his aggressive downsizing at Scott Paper.
“I had a corporation where every person stood the chance of losing their job,” he said in a 2006 interview with PBS. “I got rid of 35% of the people ….but 65% of the people have a more secure future than they’ve ever had,” Dunlap boasted.
For the 35% of those American workers that CEO Dunlap believed was ‘collateral damage’, he was well awarded in a nicely sized parachute package and, further employment to cut staff at yet another company.
In 1995, when Scott Paper was sold to Kimberly-Clark for $7.8 billion, Al Dunlap rode into the sunset with a $100 million compensation package. Shortly thereafter, Dunlap served as chairman and chief financial officer at Sunbeam, where he eradicated nearly half of the company’s 12,000 workforce.
Welch’s management was largely defined his annual purging his ‘bottom 10% of his workforce’. During his first seven years at the helm of GE, he presided over the dismissal or layoff of more than 100,000 employees.
General Electric’s came to ‘job creating’ fame is known as one of the top Publically Traded companies that paid less in income taxes than the average nurse making $53,0000 a year. In 2010, G.E. paid $0.00 dollars in federal tax, on their $10.8 billion dollar profit.
Frederick “Fritz” Henderson-General Motors
Former CEO Fritz Henderson was only in the as chief executive role for General Motors (GM) for a short period of time, resigning in December 2009.
But Henderson left a mark during his reign by slashing America’s worker jobs at an accelerated rate. Between November 2008 and April 1, 2010, GM laid off more than 75,000 employees and closed 15 plants, including four in Michigan alone.
A federal government bailed out of Citigroup left CEO VikramPandit with a smaller company workforce and a bonus award paycheck. For the bailout and bonus CEO Pandit, in turn, reduced the company American worker workforce by 75,000, through layoffs and buyouts.
“And while I can’t promise this journey will be easy or fast, I can tell you that the steps we will take will not be pussyfooting, but bold strides,” Gerstner said at his first IBM shareholder meeting, just 17 days after he took the helm of IBM.
CEO Gerstner really meant no ‘pussyfooting’ because in 1993, more than 60,000 employees were laid-off during the year he was hired as chief executive IBM.
Kenneth Lewis-Bank of America
Former CEO Kenneth Lewis, another bank bailout precipitant, counteracted big acquisitions with huge layoffs expulsions of American workers during his nine years of employment.
Meanwhile, the company took some of those same former American workers tax dollars, and paid CEO bonuses to now-defunct merged mortgage originators Countrywide Financial and Merrill Lynch.
Following accusations of former HP CEO Mark Hurd, of sexual harassment and falsifying expense reports, he was fired from the company. Unfortunately, it was not before up to 33,000 American workers received a laid-off notice, under the questionable leadership of Hurd first.
An NBC Texas Bay area news station in August 2009, wrote about an employee who up to that point worked EDS between 12-20 years. This American worker had climbed the corporate ladder and was still firmly in the middle class. Until, he received an email which informed him his base salary would be reduced effective September 1, 2009.
“We don’t know what we’re going to do. We don’t know,” the man told NBCDFW, as tears streamed from his eyes.
The same article cited a HP’s spokesperson attempt at sidestepping Texas workers pay cuts and layoffs, by stating that CEO Hurd took a 20 percent cut on his base salary of nearly$10 million dollars a year.
However, when reminded by the reporter that Hurd also made an additional $23.9 million in bonus pay, the spokesperson said, “You’re comparing apples to oranges,” as Hurd was paid his bonus for meeting certain business expectations set out by HP over a three-year period.
Close to one year prior, under Hurd’s reins,up to 24,000 Hewlett-Packard former employees were fired on a single day September 15, 2008.
Those cuts which represented approximately 7.5% of the company’s workforce, was quickly followed a $13.9 billion acquisition of Electronic Data Systems (EDS), a former GM company, were more jobs cuts were made.
Caterpillar focus during former CEO James Owens tenure, which ended in 2010, was on international sales.
In an moment of CEO truth, if there can be such a statement, ABC News asked CEO Owens if President Obama’s 2009 stimulus package would be able to stop layoffs at his company.
“I think realistically no. The truth is we’re going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again,” Owens replied. “It is going to take some time before that stimulus bill means re-hiring,” he said.
Well, move those jobs overseas, right? In fact, Caterpillar push into China, Russia and other emerging overseas markets, marked with offset a decline in U.S. sales, contributed to 27,500 American worker layoffs by the company between 2008 and 2010.
Ivan Seidenberg-Verizon Communications
Former CEO Ivan Seidenberg kept his company profit sheets favorable to Wall Street investors, by reducing Verizon Communications payroll by more than 21,000 workers between 2008 and 2010.
Still, it was CEO Seidenberg engaged in an ‘I was against i,t before I was for it’ moment, as he added his comments a Wall Street Journal blog post, “Verizon CEO: No Bailout for Me, Thanks”.
“The unknown in this is government. If you go back seven or eight years, government helped create a lot of really bad business models…because they thought you create competition by allowing companies like WorldCom and Enron [in, and that by] offering subsidies you could create competition. That crashed and burned,” he said in the October 2008 article.
And with that statement, on July 22nd, Seidenberg has now stepped down as CEO of Verizon Communications. To date, it is unknown what his golden parachute package will be.
Under former CEO Jeffery Kinder tenure, more than 20,000 Pfizer American workers were shown the door that doesn’t re-open.
Hitting closer to home in Michigan in 2007, CEO Kindler stunningly announced the closing of Pfizer’s former Ann Arbor based tech facility, where 2,000 Michiganders lost their jobs.
After his work of killing American worker jobs at the drug-making corporation, Kindler stepped down to ‘recharge the batteries’.
“My nearly nine years at Pfizer and, particularly the last four and a half as ceo, have been extremely exciting and rewarding,” Kindler says in a statement.
“I feel our team can proudly boast of some transformational accomplishments. However, the combination of meeting the requirements of our many stakeholders around the world and the 24/7 nature of my responsibilities, has made this period extremely demanding on me personally,” he cited.
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