The Number 5 Censored news story for 2000 is an particularly pernicious form of corporate welfare through the United States Export-Import Bank, which has funded numerous nuclear energy building projects in the developing world. Ex-Im is a government program which extends artificially sweet loans — guaranteed by U.S. taxpayer money — to the governments of developing countries in order to allow big U.S. contractors to build there. In a typical boondoggle,
Westinghouse built the Bataan nuclear power facility in the Philippines in 1985 at a cost of $1.2 billion, 150 percent above their projections. However, the Bataan plant was never brought on line due to the fact it was near an active volcano. Despite the fact that the plant never generated a single kilowatt of energy, the Philippines still pays about $300,000 a day in interest on the Ex-Im loan that funded the project. Should the Philippines default, U.S. taxpayers will pick up the tab.
Similar projects have netted Westinghouse alone literally billions of dollars in plants that never even operate, scamming both the people of the developing world and U.S. taxpayers. Why is this allowed to go on? Well, it just so happens that the head of President Clinton’s Export council was the CEO of Westinghouse. And since Westinghouse also owns CBS and fellow Ex-Im beneficiary and nuclear contractor General Electric owns NBC, the debacle has not received coverage on network news. Meanwhile you and I and the taxpayers of the Philippines and many other countries continue to pay billions of dollars for nuclear power plants which never even produced electricity. People often think that
conspiracy theorists are a bunch of paranoid loonies, and often they are. But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see how the interlocking systems of economic and political power continue to allow elites to victimize you and I with the silent complicity of an elite newsmedia. Just goes to show you that what’s good for MNCs is not necessarily good for America.