The Gibson Les Paul is one of the most well known and recognized guitar by not just musicians, but music fans (a replica of one of the most famous Pauls below).
Gibson also manufactures hollowbody guitars and semi-hollowbodies like the ES-335 (one below is similar to one I own), as well as acoustic guitars.
Now, this American icon has been targeted by Richard Milhous Obama and Eric Holder's InJustice Department.
The ObamaFail Blog (linked from Michelle Malkin) has the background:
The core issue is Gibson's purchase of wood for use in guitar fingerboards. The wood is not raw, nor is it finished. (Gibson CEO Henry) Juszkiewicz explains that the wood is purchased from Madagascar when it is "two-thirds of the way" finished. Once purchased, the wood is brought to America, where it is finished by American workers.
According to the Obama administration, purchasing unfinished wood is a violation of Madagascarian law:
"So the government's contention is that because American workers are working on that and finishing it, that it is not a finished product and, therefore, initially Madagascar law - and now I guess they're contending Indian law - says you can't remove unfinished product from the market. So in other words, if a person in Madagascar had completed the work on that blank, it would be legal. But the fact that American workers are finishing the work in the United States, makes it illegal, as far as their concerned."
"The government's position is, that is the law of the land in Madagascar and they are saying that is the law of the land in India. That is not the case. The fact is, we have affidavits from numerous government officials - and this court case, specifically now, is forMadagascar wood. We have affidavits from virtually every govt official saying that it is legal, that their definition of what is legal is a fingerboard blank and its been exported within every certification that is necessary. So they have the arrogance to interpret Madagascar law differently than the people of Madagascar."
So this breaks down to three issues:
- The Obama DOJ is enforcing Gibson to comply with what they believe to be Madagascarian law
- The Obama DOJ is actually wrong about the law in Madagascar and Gibson has affidavits to prove it.
- The Obama DOJ would seemingly prefer to have Gibson finish its products overseas by non-American workers
Juszkiewicz was also interviewed today by Dana Loesch:
He also gave a press conference in front of the Gibson factory (video found at Gateway Pundit).
A commenter on GP noted that Juszkiewicz, according to this article, donated to to Republicans Lamar Alexander and Marsha Blackburn. Gibson also uses non-union labor. According to Guitar Wiki:
Between 1974 and 1984, in a move that is still controversial to this day, production of Gibson guitars was shifted from Kalamazoo to Nashville, Tennessee in an effort to reduce the costs associated with high-wage, unionized workers in the Industrialized North. Norlin continued to struggle with cost and quality issues. In early 1986 the Gibson Guitar Corp. was bought by Henry E. Juszkiewicz, David H. Berryman and Gary A. Zebrowski. The survival and success of Gibson today is largely attributed to this change in ownership.
Gibson's turnaround was also noted in this USA Today article.
Which begs the question: Are Obama and Holder abusing their power in order to not only punish a Republican donor, but also a successful, well known American company for using non-union labor?
If you're a musician who owns a Gibson or even their lower line Epiphone guitars, go out and play them to show your support for the company.