Planet Gore

Lights Out: America’s Last Bulb Plant Closes

Detroit – While the now infamous UAW hooch n’ weed break once again called attention to Obama’s Recovery of Auto Jobs Summer, it also overshadowed the Destruction of Bulb Jobs Summer. At midnight Friday, the last incandescent light bulb plant in America closed — a victim of government rules outlawing the traditional light bulb by 2012.

While Democrats crow over saving hundreds of auto jobs, they have been silent on sending hundreds of bulb industry jobs to China. One by one, GE light bulb plants have closed down across the country this year as the company moves to production of the more expensive compact fluorescents with cheap labor overseas.

Today, Winchester, Va. was the last to shutter, sending 200 jobs offshore.

America’s green-brainwashed MSM was largely mute on the destruction of U.S. jobs by federal edict. But NBC News — albeit in their last story of Thursday night — managed to file a report.

“Just before midnight, GE will shut down the last incandescent light bulb factory in the U.S. The government has ordered that we switch over to more energy-efficient light bulbs,” read anchor Brian Williams introducing the story to dispassionate correspondent Mike Taibbi.

“Gone are the $30-an-hour jobs,” reported Taibbi.

“Roy Kirby can’t quite let go,” he continued turning to a whacked Winchester worker as if he had just lost his pet parakeet instead of having his livelihood taken away by federal diktat.

Perhaps Taibbi’s lack of outrage was due to ignorance of basic facts. “Consumers are changing their buying habits on their own,” he tried to explain, claiming that compact fluorescents are now the consumer’s choice of bulb.

No, they aren’t. In fact, 85 percent of light bulbs sold in America are still traditional bulbs. Because they are cheaper. Because CFLs don’t last as long as advertised. And because CFLs are hard to dispose of.

Which means consumers will be in for a rude awakening in 2012. Maybe then NBC will show some outrage.

Henry Payne — Henry Payne is the auto critic for the Detroit News.

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