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  • VIDEO: Gibson Guitar CEO Blasts Obama for Federal Raid, Persecution

    Gibson Guitar is an American icon. Musicians ranging from blues legend B.B. King to rock stars with Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith have used its guitars.

    Today, however, the guitar maker is facing a high-profile persecution from its own government. The U.S. Justice Department is pursuing a case that smacks of overcriminalization.

    Federal agents raided Gibson’s Nashville headquarters in August, the second raid on the company since 2009. Agents were working off a tip that Gibson broke laws in India and Madagascar, two countries that supply Gibson with ebony and other scarce woods for its guitars.

    Even though both countries say Gibson did nothing wrong, the company is facing an uncertain future. The Justice Department has yet to press charges under the Lacey Act, but it also refuses to drop the case. It has left Gibson in legal limbo.

    Gibson chairman and chief executive Henry Juszkiewicz, himself a conservationist devoted to preserving natural resources, testified in Washington last week about the ordeal. He also visited Heritage to recount the story and how it is illustrative of Washington’s overreach.

    The interview runs about 5 minutes. Hosted by Rob Bluey and produced by Brandon Stewart. For more videos from Heritage, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

    Posted in Featured, Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    44 Responses to VIDEO: Gibson Guitar CEO Blasts Obama for Federal Raid, Persecution

    1. michellegilstrap says:

      Obama needs to look and realize that US companies employ US citizens and that we should not be persecuting our people for putting Americans to work.

      • gary holt says:

        OK…lets do away with Bush;s creation… The Department of Homeland Security… and then we'll talk!!!

      • gary holt says:

        Tell that to the Baseball players who have been dragged before Congress, hounded by FBI agents who wanted so very much to 'play' the game and when they couldn't went forward with a 'vendetta' against those who did!!!
        Millions of dollars of OUR money wasted to draw attention away from the worst president this country has ever seen…George W Bush!!!

    2. Bobbie says:

      why do we have a u.s. justice department when they're conduct is unjust! please put an end to this conduct of corruption and picking and choosing. tax dollars are falsely used and the attacks of this administration are extreme and unwarranted! Today's government works for itself causing hardships on the people for who government "deems" hardships be put. Please, stand up to reprimand and stop this unAmerican government authoritative, abusive behavior!!

    3. carol,az says:

      GOOD! I hope Gibson Guitar sue the Federal Govt for unlawful pratice right to the bank. Thank you
      Heritage for your support. This madness from the Justice Dept has to be stopped.

      • JJM says:

        Every business is subject to attack. If not, just pass a couple more regulations.
        End Government Immunity so that the injured can recover at least lost earnings.
        I lost over a year of income due to the Deepwater Moratorium and continuing Permitorium. The innocent are punished more than BP. My attorney cannot touch the DOI or other gov involved.
        The Destroyer and his Mobs will not stop until total destruction or _________!!

      • Doug P says:

        Even if Gibson sues the Gov't and wins it will be a dry Judgment because the Gov't is broke and has no money to even pay it's bills.

    4. Willine Evans says:

      I'm very proud that a CEO has stepped up to the microphone and is speaking out on this policy/regulations of this administration. I believe there will be other CEO's regardless of their politics who will stand up for this republic and be brave enough to see this administration and all who have this ideology to punish taxpayers, businesses and corporations and make the government the size of the moon out of office .. out of a job in the 2012 Elections.

    5. WJLC13 says:

      What a wicked, mean thing to do to a business. Makes me wonder where this type of bullying-persecution will lead? ~ Rhetorical question ~

    6. Mr R says:

      The administration is trying every thing it can to destroy American business. If Obama says he wants business growth in American, he's lying. I think it was Dale Bumpers of Ark that testified in a congressional hearing some years ago that said, "if they say it's not about money, then it's about money:, "If they say it's not about sex, then you can bet it's about sex"//// Come 2012 I hope some of the ones that wanted the "Change" they asked for have realized that the "change" was about socialism and a fast track direction to it from the Puppet, obama..

    7. Roger Bemis says:

      Good interview! It's truly amazing what this present administration will do to hurt the economy and a geat business like Gibson Giutars! Hang tough for another year. Relief is coming!!

    8. Ann American says:

      Not a move is made in D. C. that is not calculated and planned by the Obamacrats.
      It is hard to figure out this one! It is certain, it needs to be stopped…and Now!!
      One can only speculate on the reason, but you can bet it a nefarious one that will,
      true to form, benefit foreign interests, cronies, leftist organizations, or some cherry
      picked group at the expense of American workers and Freedoms!
      DEMAND and investigation from your representatives. Letters work!!

      • Al Parkes says:

        Reason for the harrasment? I've heard that Gibson is not a union shop. And Martin, their main competitor is.

    9. LinCamp says:

      WE as a country are FAST BECOMING A POLICE STATE and anyone in USA who thinks not,,better WAKE UP!

    10. Alex de la Torre says:

      So, we prosecute this guy but not the Black Panthers. Truly amazing.

    11. Jeff Olstad says:

      It makes me wonder about all the companies you don't hear about. Judging by a casual way this was done the justice dept. must do this kind of thing all the time. Thank Nature for Gibson Guitars. I must sign off before I start getting profane.

    12. musicmoney21 says:

      Chris Holly makes statement w/ Gibson in hand w/ Herman Cain at Town Hall in SC. http://youtu.be/nRjJfrP3VTI

    13. Jaime A. Hinojosa says:

      Over twenty years ago the same injustice happened to a client of mine when FBI agents raided his office during the toilet and hammer scandal of the 90's. Although he was vindicated later through the court system, his business lost 80% of their revenue and truly never recovered after spending over $500,000 fighting them. I hope this does not happen to Gibson. What a shame. The DOJ has true problems and they need to be held accoutable for their actions.

    14. Dave Loduca says:

      When I get to heaven, I know that St. Peter will be picking a 1958 Les Paul. After Justice finishes screwing with Gibson, perhaps they'll break down the doors at Harley-Davidson, or maybe John-Deere.

    15. icu4miles says:

      This is typical of this current administration, prosecuting and punishing the good and rewarding the criminals. Oh yeah, the FEDS are at the top of the list of most wanted, ripping us off and passing unconstitutional legislation… I say they all need to go
      Semper Fi

    16. Slimcurly says:

      The main kick that the government has got against Gibson is that they are not union labor. Do you think the Obama administration would do thios to a union shop?!

    17. RG Dempster says:

      Thank you for posting this video!
      The actions of Obama's Regime are Out Of Tune!
      As Americans we must be careful..be on the watch
      What's next?
      Gibson is a true American Company….
      We pray for an early end to the DOJ actions…..
      Detroit Rocks! with Gibson Guitars!

    18. Carl says:

      Please I beg that we allow ourselves to be honest for one moment. Do not feign shock or dismay as we all know that OUR government is corrupt to the very core of it's existence. However nothing is going to happen because of that because the American people are sheep and have and are being led to slaughter. You are comfortable in your cushy homes, driving your fancy autos and living in your climate controlled environments, (say: A/C or heat at all times). Yes, the times they are a changing, (credit Bob Dylan) and the sheep keep right on driving for the cliff. The edge is so very close and they will not see the writing on the wall. Talk about no love for their offspring, their lifestyle forces their children and grand and great grandchildren into slavery and all the generations to come for the selfish acts displayed today. Get off your asses and stop this march to slavery, cowards.

    19. remnant of the west says:

      Our government, is not ours, it belongs to a new dictatorship that advocates and facilitates only through lawyers, for themselves and their big one world order friends. They are creating a new form of economic slavery and if America does not stand up and stop them, they will set this standard for the world and no one will be free, ever to pursue their dreams. The only man brave enough to speak the truth is Ron Paul.
      Ron Paul or no one at all. Take America back for the individual!

    20. Carl says:

      I now have to have my comments approved by the site police. Wow, what a difference between the Heritage Administration and the Government's Administration, NOT……. Your first amendment rights hard at work!!!! In defense of Heritage, it is their right to silence opposing views as they are a private organization, however the People's government is not allowed to silence the rights of her citizens……………..So Heritage: As you all call it MODERATE away…………..

    21. Michael says:

      Maybe some people should read about the law and what it is suppose to do and what the Gibson Company has done in the past before posting remarks, you only getting one viewpoint by watching this video.

      • The Lacey Act is only applicable if the foreign nation in question makes a complaint, which India has not done.

      • Marco Polo says:

        Michael, I share the point of view that there are always two sides to any issue or point of discussion. While not an expert on the law in question, this video is the CEO stating that no charges have been filed (which would give you the "other side") which is also public record; and has pointed out both India and Madagascar where they import woods do so legally and with the consent of the respective country governments. These are facts already posted here and elsewhere.
        While I don't support the view that corporations are "treated like individuals" which became law quite some time ago, you either have to file charges or let them walk within 48 hrs. Without charges, and no proof of illegal activity, the property seized must be returned and Gibson can get back to work. Unless they can show violation of the Patriot Act (which in itself is unconstitutional-but I digress) where all your rights under the Constitution are voided. I have a markedly different point of view in following this travesty of law. I've investigated the "other side" and there isn't one! I don't know the government motivation, but the Fed's are way out of line on this one.

    22. Being an indie voter, I had originally supported Obama back in 08. However, his poor track record this year, which includes the invasion of a high-rep company who does its best to give back to those from whom they take, has caused me to lose hope in him. I gave him a chance. He blew it. As a voter and a musician, I am deeply upset about this. Good job, Henry. I tip my hat to you for speaking out against the corrupt drama queens of DC.

      • davesaw says:

        yeah he is going to fix 8 yrs of George W. in 3 yrs,,,,give me a break !!!!

        • I didn't expect Obama to fix the damage entirely. My hopes were that he'd at least repair some of the damage. Yes, the unemployment rate has dropped a tiny bit, but I feel he's crossed too many lines with his power, such as with his universal health care plan, which, to me, seems redundant when we already have free health clinics. But it's when his admin. lashes out at major US corporations with no history of wrongdoing in ways that threaten the employees of that company, especially THIS company, that makes me angry.

    23. oufan84 says:

      They need to look at how many things we buy from other countries. I bet a majority of the things we buy are from sweat shops. I bet even politicians buy their family things from these shops. We need to focus on whats right and that is to leave gibson guitars alone and focus on the economy..

    24. BOBBALL says:

      It's hysterical how people scream about regulating when deregulation kicks them in the balls and how people scream for deregulation when regulations kick them in the balls.

    25. davesaw says:

      I used to have some respect for this guy .Does he really think that Obama is responsible for this????…..PLEASE !!!!!…..yeah blame Obama for all the worlds troubles !!!…what a joke !!!

    26. Guest says:

      I watched the video and distinctly heard the President say "We Should only regulate" he didnt say we wont, or we arent regulating, after all he has a Republican congress regulating everything he tries to do. taking a sound bite out of context and saying the President lied to enhance an anti Democrat agenda before an election is total BS. I have lost ALL respect for this company and its leader after seeing this, My personal belief has always been if you are in business, vote how you want but keep your mouth shut, this may cost you more then the "Billions?" you say this little search on one plant would cost you, and of course the Republican scare tactic has to go in there, "This will hurt consumers" and the big one "This will cost jobs" and How is this gonna happen sir if you are number one in the world ? People have gotten shot up and killed at McDonalds more then once, I havent noticed them sellin fewer Big Macs because of it.

    27. Jim says:

      WE THE PEOPLE…COLLECTIVELY need to take back our country and vote not of popularity or race, but to elect strong Leaders with moral values and backbones.(remember Moral Values). IMPEACH the leaders that do not believe in the ideals that once made this country great, starting at the top. As an American born, Military Veteran, I am sickened daily by the news of such irresponsible behavior within our own Government. The hopes of ever again having a AMERICAN COUNTRY governed by AMERICAN PEOPLE with AMERICAN VALUES are fading fast unless we do something about it. Any President that wages a third world foreign policy against his own citizens and their livelyhood should be stripped of his title, his office, and this country…….ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

    28. Bradley says:

      Obama has NOTHING to do with it. Knowing the pay that Gibson pays their luthiers is not much more than the guys flipping burgers across the street. Gibson guitars for years have been slacking in quality. Many times being delivered without proper set up, and I have seen them shipped unfinished. Maybe gibson should focus on the quality of their instruments as you canbe sure of two things; You can find plenty that are better but none that are more overpriced.

    29. Mike fuehr says:

      It"s just a diversion fron this A.G. Holder And this communist justice dept. under J Napontno or however you spell her communist name way of taking the spotlight off of the crooked gun running scheme into Mexico to a bunch of drug loards to kill our border agents and then try to blame it on the N.R.A. for gun running we can see right through these fiflthy communists no matter how many tricks they come up with and thats how I see it.

    30. Gerry says:

      I just bought a Les Paul … and this story was one of the biggest reasons. Hey, I had to show my support, right? ;)

    31. MIGGIDAWG says:


    32. Kevin says:

      Hopefully the police will allow this,GOD help this counrty.Because he's the only one who can.The government is to big and corrupt.

    33. Alcon says:

      It is time to put an end to this administration but waiting for the next election is risky at best. Based on Obama's violation of constitutional conventions and the number of times he has bypassed congress to accomplish something on his agenda ignoring the safeguards the constitution put in place to prevent unilateral decisions from being enacted as protected with the separation of powers to include executive, legislative, and judicial protections, he needs to be impeached now! We are sitting by and allowing our country and our freedoms to be taken from us and behaving in the same manner as the German citizens who turned Hitler and Third Reich loose on the world. He will destroy our country, our way of life, and jeopardize or economic well being placing us in postion similar to Egypt in the near future!

    34. Merryjoy says:

      Our only remedy to the fall of America is a return to Jesus Christ as Governor and Ruler over each individual life. We as a nation have defiantly and repeatedly let Him know He is no longer needed or relevant- We,as Americans, can do it ourself, thank you very much! The consequences of such arrogant self-rule has brought us, in many cases, to where we are today. Let's go a bit higher and deeper in the solving of this country's problems and call upon God to forgive us for abandoning Him !

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