A massive U.S. conglomerate, covering (according to Hoover's) "aircraft engines, transportation equipment such as locomotives, appliances (kitchen and laundry equipment), lighting, electric distribution and control equipment, generators and turbines, nuclear reactors, medical imaging equipment, and plastics," plus financial services (GE Capital Services) and entertainment (NBC).

General Electric is one of the most freakin' massive companies in the world. They make everything. No, seriously, if you trace the manufacturing process of anything far enough back, GE has done something to it along the way. Some really cool people work at GE. i work there, but i can't really say if i'm cool. A lot of girth throwing and badassery goes on at GE. i'm not a huge fan of the company or anything, but they do some incredible stuff. And they Bring Good Things to Life.


General Electric is now officially General Electric International Incorporated, abbreviated as GEII.

The somewhat-famous NBC chime tune (three notes) comes directly from that network's ownership by General Electric.

If you take GE's full name, General Electric Corporation, and reduce it to an acronym, you get GEC. Those three letters happen to also be musical notes, forming a C Major chord. If you play those three notes in succession -- start with G, then the E above it, and finally the C between them -- well, that's that's the three-note tune you hear on NBC.

Careful listeners to the NPR radio "news" program "Marketplace" will notice that the tune from GE's "We bring good things to life" campaign is included in the Marketplace theme music. It plays just after they acknowlege GE's sponsorship. Even more careful listeners will note that GE's interests as a world-dominating multinational corporation are well served by the content and style of this program as well.

As previously mentioned, GE makes aircraft engines. They are a very large military contractor. They own both polical parties, and benefit from the slaughter of Serbian, Iraqi, and (insert pariah nation here) civilians. In addition to that charming civic duty, they were also responsible for the deposition of PCBs into the Hudson River.

Thanks a lot, asshole, that was our last sturgeon!
History
In 1890, Thomas Edison consolidated his existing electrical goods business into the Edison General Electric Company, after opening a new research lab. Two years later in 1892 EGEC merged with the Thomson-Houston Company to form the General Electric Company, after discovering that the two companies were so large that they could not produce complete electrical installations due to the huge number of patents each company owned; it was impossible for either of them to make something workable as it would infringe on the others' patents!

General Electric today is, according to Forbes, the worlds' second largest company-the biggest is Citigroup. They manufacture an astonishing range of products, such as:


* These products are sold under the name "Thomson".

GE also provide financial services under the banner of GE Capital.

General Electric Corporation is completely unrelated to the UK General Electric Company, who changed their name to Marconi a few years ago.

Controversy
GE's involvement with the nuclear power industry has obviously not made many environmentalists overly enamoured with them-neither has their PCB dumping, which is illegal in many countries.

GE also is contracted with the US Department of Defence to supply aircraft engines, meaning that technically they profit from war and killing (though this is debatable).

Their corporate policies are also less than libertarian: see http://www.ge.com/en/microsite/commitment/social/integrity/conflicts.htm.

Sources
General Electric
Greenpeace
Google
Wikipedia
Other E2 nodes
Me, myself and I

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