Feds raid Gibson guitar factory…


August 28, 2011 by esarsea

You’ve got to hear it and see it to believe it.

Your tax dollars at work…

5 thoughts on “Feds raid Gibson guitar factory…

  1. torqdog says:

    I’ve been searching the net and found this article interesting. This kind of heavy handed regulatory enforcement is a prime example of why businesses are leaving this country and setting up overseas. And it seems as though Gibson is the only one targeted even though others like Fender use the same products. Maybe the CEO’s contributions to conservative PACs has something to do with it?!?!

    Big importers like Gibson aren’t the only ones who have reason to find these raids troubling. The Journal reports that “musicians who play vintage guitars and other instruments made of environmentally protected materials are worried the authorities may be coming for them next.”

    If you are the lucky owner of a 1920s Martin guitar, it may well be made, in part, of Brazilian rosewood. Cross an international border with an instrument made of that now-restricted wood, and you better have correct and complete documentation proving the age of the instrument. Otherwise, you could lose it to a zealous customs agent — not to mention face fines and prosecution. …

    It’s not enough to know that the body of your old guitar is made of spruce and maple: What’s the bridge made of? If it’s ebony, do you have the paperwork to show when and where that wood was harvested and when and where it was made into a bridge? Is the nut holding the strings at the guitar’s headstock bone, or could it be ivory? “Even if you have no knowledge — despite Herculean efforts to obtain it — that some piece of your guitar, no matter how small, was obtained illegally, you lose your guitar forever,” [Quinnipiac University law] Prof. [John]Thomas has written. “Oh, and you’ll be fined $250 for that false (or missing) information in your Lacey Act Import Declaration.”

    Thus, on top of all the unconstitutional environmental laws the federal government enforces, it is now attempting to enforce, at its own discretion and in excruciating detail, all other foreign countries’ environmental laws, even when those countries do not believe their laws have been violated.

    Given this policy’s negative effects on Americans’ liberties and livelihoods, we may all be strumming the blues soon — probably on guitars made in countries with less overbearing governments than the one that presumes to lead the free world.


  2. billie789 says:

    Of course, the main on line reference to this story is on Fox News. Because at Fox, they’re really concerned with exotic woods and extinct species and, and, and. . .the environment! It’s why Fox hasn’t reported a word about Murdock polluting Colorado now.

    Look at the language of your link, Randy. “…to-save-endangered-FOREIGN-trees” like there’s something intrinisically un-American about saving endangered species wherever in the hell they exist. Another attempt to make this adminstration sound edgy and foreign and all spooky and shit to the helpless old folks sucking it up like Quaker Oats. The Brazilian rain forests, that are critical to regional weather and air quality, are being stripped off the face of the earth to make room for more cattle. They eat, poop and burp methane all day. Then, we eat them and they give us cancers and heart problems and strokes. But the “job creators” at the top of the pile, like McDonald’s, need those beef patties more than the earth needs clean air, clean water, stabilized hillsides and regional weather patterns. Those $8/hour jobs are a person’s way out of poverty!

    See, this is what happens when you let a Liberal Kenyan Socialist Un-Amerikun run things! You know, the Liberal Kenayn Socialist Un-Amerikun Richard Nixon created the EPA and I know that saving things from extinction runs counter to good conservative values.

    And if I were going to punish an American corporate conservative for his contributions to PACS, I don’t think I’d waste my time trying to create a regulation problem for his purchase of foreign wood. There are many more direct ways to get someone, right now, just ask Karl Rove.

    Is Gibson the only manufacturer being looked at? If they are, the paranoid comment about his conservative donations makes some bizzare sense. If it’s world-wide, you just burped that up because you couldn’t help it, huh?

    Or is Gibson the only manufacturer allegedly caught with pallets and pallets of illegally imported wood in its possession? The only manufacturer whose CEO told his employee to keep making guitars with the “illegal” wood until it can all be sorted out? Is this like a bust at a bar and the owner keeps telling his emjployees to keep serving alcohol even though they’re in the process of being busted for selling illegally importerd beer?

    But, Hell! Everything’s gonna be all right soon! You’re about to elect either Rick Perry or Mitt Romney and neither of those guys will protect anything that doesn’t poop greenbacks and gold all over their buddies. Just suffer through this naive’ period of Barry Hussein and everything will come up Perry very soon.

    And every post I manage to write in a post-Obama environment will be a squirrel attack from fucking left field and it’s gonna feel great! I mean, where are the jobs, Mr. Cantor and Boehn er?

    There, I showed my hand for 2012 and beyond.

  3. Bill says:

    This story popped up today online and this is a link to the employee’s feedback on working at this location and working for this guy. He apparently has a 14% approval rating from Gibson employees and has a reputation for being a useful Republican tool.


  4. esarsea says:

    There sure is a high degree of commonality running through the comments posted by current and former employees and management. Far too many to be dismissed as isolated posts from a few disgruntled former employees…my goodness.

  5. Bill says:

    And the guy owns Gibson outright and it’s not publicly traded or unionized and he can do anything he wants, like completely demoralizing his employees. This week, he’s Joe the Plumber, making the rounds of right-wing outlets pretending that the heavy-handed regulators are harming small businesses like his.

    Nevermind that he knowingly imported banned exotic wood products and ivory.

    “Hey, those heavy-handed DEA guys just came into my head shop and took out all the banned drug paraphenalia I was selling! Then, those heavy-handed ATF guys came and took all the banned weapons and ammo I had stockpiled. Then, the FDA came in and took all the exotic and endangered animal pelts I bought on the black-market. Finally, the Department of Energy goons came and took the 1/4 lb of Plutonium I bought from Chechen rebels to protect my family in case those shady new neighbors from Honduras even think about launching a first strike on my backyard!”

    Or, you could just obey the laws that are in place. If you don’t like the law or it impinges on your even greater success, work to change it. Give your congressional rep $50,000 for his re-election with the caveat that you need import laws lightened-up to maintain your business.

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