Learn about realities of global business

To the Editor:

The Rev. Gannon should learn realities about global business before lambasting Scott Brown for his affiliation with Kadant Inc. and its overseas activities. A substantial portion of Kadant profits come from its international operations in places with much better incentives and lower corporate taxes. Kandant’s Mexican operations are in a free trade zone with low or zero duty; a fifty percent payroll tax deduction; lower corporate income taxes and special advantages for accessing the Mexican markets. China provides low taxes, set up assistance and other incentives that practically guarantee every multinational will set up shop there. Other countries woo with R&D incentives, grants, even zero or very low income tax for several years after profitability. All these countries require a subsidiary or other presence with local employees. And don’t think these are third rate factories – they’re the most advanced manufacturing sites in the world.

Would Rev. Gannon prefer that Kadant forego these overseas opportunities? Does he really think Kadant would not have layoffs if it confined its business to the US? Would those who depend on IRA’s and pensions invested in companies like Kadant be better off without the increase in value resulting from global activities?

Globalization of business is as unstoppable as the Industrial Revolution was. All our competitors have realized this. Instead of praising Jeanne Shaheen for her “head in the sand” vilification of corporate international expansion, why aren’t we asking this question: What has Jeanne Shaheen done to help American businesses and workers become more competitive in a global economy?

Julia Schappals