The President of the United States Visits Intel Again (Video)
The president of the United States loves Intel. A day after delivering his annual State of the Union Address before a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, President Obama paid the second visit of his presidency to an Intel facility, this one in Chandler, Arizona.
The first was last year in Hillsboro, Oregon, and during the visit, Intel CEO Paul Otellini announced that the new chip plant, or “fab” as they’re usually called, would be built in Arizona.
The main reason that Obama loves Intel is that it’s an example of the kind of manufacturing work that he’d like to see more of in America. As such, the sight of Intel spending $5 billion to build a new plant and adding 4,000 jobs is the sort of thing that any president would like to stand close to, especially at the onset of what looks to be a tough re-election campaign. It’s also one of those rare companies that’s riding high despite an uncertain global economy.
One thing Obama certainly didn’t mention was that Intel added plants in Israel and China in the last year as well. He’s also in no hurry to remind the audience that the chips that Intel makes will be shipped to China and inserted into computers and servers, many of which will be shipped into the United States.
We also learned this week from the New York Times, Obama seemed vaguely baffled by the notion that Apple’s iPhone is manufactured in China, and in a meeting in Silicon Valley last year asked Apple CEO Steve Jobs why they couldn’t be made in the U.S. Jobs’s answer, which is correct: Those jobs aren’t coming back. David Ricardo’s law of Comparative Advantage strikes again.
Anyway, the only video of the full speech that I’ve found came from the local TV station, ABC15, and thankfully they have made it embeddable.
In his remarks, the president is impressed both with the grand scale of things involved in building chips — he remembers seeing an electron microscope at Intel’s plant in Oregon that was powerful enough to display atoms, which is certainly impressive. In Chandler he’s impressed with what he says is the world’s largest land-based crane, which is being used in the construction effort. Enjoy the speech.
(Image is a screen grab from earlier in the video.)