Monday, March 30, 2009

Auto Bankruptcy

I was driving up to Miami in a rental van to buy a shed at Costco when I heard President Obama's speech on the fate of the automobile companies. He fired the boss of General Motors, who walks away with a 20 million dollar "pension.". Rick Wagoner and announced GM has sixty days to come up with a plan for restructuring he likes and Chrysler has thirty days to firm up it's potential deal with Fiat for a merger. If not, then the federal government won't give them anymore money.
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So. I ask myself why didn't we hear similar harsh words for banskters and re-insurance leaders when they got not a handful of billion dollars but trillions to bail them out? Probably because this is an industry that gives working class Americans well paid work with the security of health insurance and pensions, and banks are run by bubbas of the presidential elites. There is no other explanation.
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I'm all for the government setting tough standards if free market businesses want federal money for a bailout, but I don't see why one lot gets all they want from us and the other lot gets the shaft? Honestly none of these free market freebooters should have got any government assistance. They took the profits when the going was good and they should take the losses now that they aren't but we seem hell bent on saving everyone's ass with taxpayer dollars so let taxpayers set the agenda.
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Instead the taxpayers in Michigan get laid off and the rip off artists on Wall Street gets retention bonuses because they are so valuable. This stuff is horrible. And as I listened to NPR expounding on this issue their insipid reporters (did I ever really freelance for these wimps?) wagged their fingers saying that this "show of toughness" by the President sent a stern warning to the banksters that they have to shape up too. They also said Americans hate Detroit and car workers and are happy to see them go down. I wonder where they got that idea?
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Oh and let's not forget last week things were starting to look up according to the TV faces because the Dow Jones climbed back around 8,000. The end of the "recession" was in sight they said. I'm betting the end of this Depression will only be in sight when we start seeing Americans getting re-hired in the numbers they've been getting fired. Let's hope it's not with the outbreak of War.

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