By on March 29, 2009

Unbelievable. And yet, there it is, in The Detroit News‘ unsigned editorial: “President Barack Obama’s promise of aid to the auto industry is welcome, but it would also be helpful to the Detroit automakers if he stopped badmouthing them. The president late last week said he expected to provide additional assistance to the struggling manufacturers, but he added that they couldn’t expect to rely on building more sport utility vehicles and depend on continued low gasoline prices.” Yeah, we pointed out the fallacy of President Obama’s pandering to the “Detroit’s comeuppance is due to the fact they were (are?) greedy bastards who forced Americans into SUVs” shibboleth. But we (and by that I mean and I) don’t support the Motown bailouts. Never have. Never will. And, as far as I know, I don’t live on Planet Claire. “While Obama acknowledged the huge slump in auto sales that is hampering the recovery of the auto firms, he still implied that they’re not making vehicles the public wants. That’s just not true.” A genuine WTF moment, n’est-ce pas?

If the president is serious about seeking to preserve a domestic auto industry, he’ll slow the administration’s rush to impose more stringent fuel economy rules on the industry than currently required by Congress, and he’ll reject bids by California and other states to impose their own piecemeal emissions and fuel economy regulations.

Obama is right to worry about throwing “good money after bad” in aiding the auto industry and Detroit firms should be held accountable for their use of assistance funds.

But his repetition of conventional but erroneous views of Detroit automakers and their products won’t help the cause of preserving the industry.

Well, yes; I mean, no. I mean, yes, Obama is using FUD to git ’er done. But he’s doing it for Motown or, at least, its unions. The DetN’s bite-the-hand-that-feeds attitude is an affront to all the hard-working taxpayers outside of fortress Detroit paying for this absurd bridge to nowhere financing.

And since when has anyone at GM or Chrysler been held accountable for their epic mismanagement? Isn’t that the reason they’re snuffling at a $60B+ taxpayer trough? Clearly, nothing short of bankruptcy will force Motown and its camp followers to face reality. SOS.

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15 Comments on “Bailout Watch 463: Detroit: “Just Shut Up and Give Us the Money”...”


  • avatar
    bluecon

    Why would they declare bankruptcy when the government is willing to give them as much other peoples money as they want?

    It’s a good deal if you can get it.

    The payoff to the UAW continues.

  • avatar
    John R

    Incredible. That town really exists in another dimension, doesn’t it? Spare a dime, brother, but spare the lecture.

  • avatar
    97escort

    The bailout begging is affecting sales of GM and Chrysler according this article:

    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-auto-bailout29-2009mar29,0,408241.story

  • avatar
    George B

    I’m pissed off at both sides. Don’t like having to pay to keep GM and Chrysler on life support and I don’t like hearing the automotive ignorance of Obama. GM and Chrysler are relatively good at building SUVs and other light trucks at a profit. In a more sane world they would make money building trucks and quit making cars at a loss. Would be cheaper to pay GM and Chysler autoworkers to not build cars this year.

  • avatar
    Canucknucklehead

    America’s addiction to foreign oil is a major part of the Obama’s platform. It is also a major chunk of Canada’s current account surplus. Iran’s too.

  • avatar
    Patrickj

    All the bailouts are doing is postponing the inevitable liquidation of GM and Chrysler by 18 to 24 months, until after the worst of the near-depression.

    While they can’t say it, I’m sure that few in the Administration, including President Obama, have any illusions otherwise.

  • avatar
    golf4me

    Funny how 45-50% of market share = nobody. I guess then only 1% of the votes for Osa..errr Obama were “real”.

    While I don’t support the LOANS and do support a treasury-backed C11, I think the DetNews writer has a point. Why bad-mouth the companies you are basically investing in. You can BELIEVE anything you want about them, but why say it out loud? It’s counterproductivity on the grandest of scales, with your money no less. It’s like if you bought a million shares of McDonald’s then got on CNN and told everyone their food is unhealthy and made from horse-meat. Dumb. Reveals the fact that we need someone in the Presidency who has actually had a real job and had to meet a payroll or any such metric. Not to mention he wouldn’t have enough security clearance to do the laundry in the White House, but that’s a whole nuther matter…

  • avatar
    ERJR

    From what I have read, GM and Chrysler are not satisfying the conditions of the original loan. Now that more money is going to be tossed their way, there is no way anyone that was going to make concessions ever will. This is a true lose lose situation for the tax payer. With product development on hold at GM and non existent at Chrysler, both companies will still be behind if car sales should pick up.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    “While I don’t support the LOANS … ”

    Emphasizing that these bailouts are presently structured as loans instead of as outright grants pretty much misses the point. No private party will even consider lending GM or Chrysler more money at the moment because of the extraordinarily high probability that loan will never be repaid. Existing GM and Chrysler debt is trading hands at dimes on the dollar.

    The form of the government’s intervention is a minor point. The main point is that government cash on the barrel is the only thing keeping the lights on.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    Obama can say all he wants, but I usually get kissed before I get NSFW’d.

  • avatar
    healthy skeptic

    What concept car is that in the photo? I’ve heard of gas, electricity, hydrogen and ethanol, but unicorns is new to me.

  • avatar

    Looks like Wagoner is throwing in the towel.

    General Motors Chief Rick Wagoner Said to Step Down

    March 29 (Bloomberg) — General Motors Corp. Chief Executive Officer Rick Wagoner will step down after more than eight years running the largest U.S. automaker, people familiar with the situation said.

    The people, who asked not to be named because the announcement hasn’t been made, didn’t give a reason why Wagoner, 56, is leaving. Wagoner said as recently as March 19 that he didn’t plan to resign.

  • avatar
    ravenchris

    Just shut up and give us the money or we’ll put all our middle class employees out of work…

  • avatar
    jurisb

    You shouldn`t have voted for a presidential candidate according to what he promised during the primaries. You should have voted according to the candidates record , what the candidate had actually done prior to the primaries. Obama has not physically enginered a single part ,detail or run a single company, and his solutions of bailing out everyone with fiat money, just shows what kind of CFR bird he is. His promises of `we will do this, we will do that ` are just annoying. Obama, why don`t you open your wallet and pay with your own money for what you offer. Otherwise he probably even doesn`t know that money doesn`t grow on trees ( or Bushes). Has he ever asked where do those trillions come from? Why not starting export of real manufactured items instead of inflation?
    So how do you restructure an auto industry? How do you make your products more competetive? just kick in ass your engineers and expect them to crank out 8-speed robo-gearboxes or what? It doesn`t matter that the industry will be restructured, if the real products won`t be as good as european or japanese, there are no chances. So before some Bob Putz or Dick Wagoneer ask for some cash, why not ask them how exactly, dollar by dollar they plan to spend the money?

  • avatar
    M1EK

    Yeah, we pointed out the fallacy of President Obama’s pandering to the “Detroit’s comeuppance is due to the fact they were (are?) greedy bastards who forced Americans into SUVs” shibboleth.

    It’s not a shibboleth. They willfully and purposefully created the gigantic mass market for SUVs out of a tiny legitimate work market because it was a place they could hide from fuel efficiency rules (for a while), at the expense of our safety, environment, and national security.

    The guys responsible for that should Die In A Fire.

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