The American multinational conglomerate corporation 3M is reportedly being forced to pay a “big price” for shady behavior that has been documented by state officials in Florida.
One of those officials, Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz, appeared on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” late Thursday to “tell people what is actually happening.”
“For the last several weeks, we have had a boiler room chasing down 3M authorized distributors [and] brokers representing that they sell the N95 masks, only get to warehouses that are completely empty,” he said.
“[We are] being told that our shipments are on cargo planes and the flights don’t even appear. We are chasing ghosts. I just decided to turn up the heat and tell people what is actually happening in the N95 mask space.”
Listen to the full discussion below:
(Source: Fox News)
What’s actually happening, Moskowitz claimed, is that 3M has been selling its N95 masks to foreign nations — versus local U.S. states in need — for bigger cash profits.
“They’re specifically saying, ‘Listen, we are sorry your order got pushed down, but … there are foreign countries who do business differently and they’re showing up with cash,'” he explained.
“I can’t, other emergency management directors, CEOs of hospitals can’t get this life-saving PPE [Personal Protective Equipment] because a company decided to make a globalist decision and not put America first.”
Instead, Moskowitz and other officials are being told that the conglomerate is out of stock of masks, despite its production output being sky-high.
To fight #COVID19 & support healthcare workers, we have doubled our global output of N95 respirators to an annual rate of over 1.1 billion per year, or nearly 100 million per month. Read more: https://t.co/CkglKW0zlR pic.twitter.com/yhJZzOlB72
— 3M (@3M) March 20, 2020
“I said … ‘I have money and I’d like to purchase some of those.’ They said I couldn’t, they have no masks to sell me. It’s criminal what is happening,” he maintained.
And this is no “right-wing conspiracy theory.”
“[R]oughly 280 million masks in warehouses around the U.S. were purchased by foreign buyers on Monday alone,” Politico confirmed on Tuesday.
Apparently, 3M isn’t alone in its shenanigans. Likewise, Moskowitz isn’t alone in encountering problems.
“Wael Barsoum, CEO of Cleveland Clinic Florida, said his hospital system has not had a problem dealing with its traditional suppliers, such as Cardinal Health and Premier Medical. But when those suppliers are sold out, Barsoum said, the hospital’s supply chain supervisors have turned to private vendors,” the Miami Herald reported Tuesday.
“That’s where you’re getting into all kinds of shadiness,” Barsoum himself said.
Moskowitz has for his part taken his complaints to Twitter:
— Jared Moskowitz (@JaredEMoskowitz) April 2, 2020
Hi @3M. I’m your new Troll. I’m the Director of Emergency Management for the State of Florida @FLSERT. Please send us N95 masks directly to our hospitals, first responders and the state. How many brokers and distributors do we have to negotiate with only to find empty warehouses? https://t.co/0E3gLc3R5t
— Jared Moskowitz (@JaredEMoskowitz) March 30, 2020
— Jared Moskowitz (@JaredEMoskowitz) March 29, 2020
Part of the problem, Politico noted, is that “[t]he government has yet to curtail exports by U.S. companies.”
Of course, conservatives believe it’s not proper for big government to dictate a business’s actions. Rather, conservatives argue that businesses ought to be doing the right thing by their own volition. But in this particular scenario, President Donald Trump appears to vehemently agree. As Moskowitz spoke on FNC, he posted the following tweet:
We hit 3M hard today after seeing what they were doing with their Masks. “P Act” all the way. Big surprise to many in government as to what they were doing – will have a big price to pay!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 3, 2020
It turns out that as congressional Democrats were busy launching more investigations into his administration that afternoon, his administration was, in turn, busy applying the Defense Production Act against 3M so as to force the company to sell as many N95 respirator masks as it is possible to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Once FEMA obtains the mask, the agency will then be able to distribute them to the states.
“The Secretary, through the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Administrator), shall use any and all authority available under the Act to acquire, from any appropriate subsidiary or affiliate of 3M Company, the number of N-95 respirators that the Administrator determines to be appropriate,” the memorandum reads.
— Dan Scavino Jr.🇺🇸 (@Scavino45) April 3, 2020
In a statement issued late Thursday, 3M chief executive Michael F. Roman pushed back on the order by trotting out what appeared to be a dubious excuse.
“The demand we have exceeds our production capacity,” he reportedly said.
Meanwhile, Florida Democrats have reflexively chosen to aim their ire, not at shady acting manufactures like 3M, but rather at state Republicans.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, “is not managing supplies, despite his relationship to the president,” Rep. Donna Shalala, a Florida Democrat, said to the Tallahassee Democrat. “We have a significant supply shortage in Florida.”
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