Friday, November 21, 2008

The automotive bailout

I know this happened a couple of days ago, but I've been mulling this over and have the following observations...

First, how clueless do you have to be to take a private jet to beg for money?  It is indicative of their sense of entitlement and hubris that they would be so unconscious of their image here...their PR people should be fired, at a minimum.  Apparently they are still doing business as usual, utterly unconscious of the fact that the world is changing dramatically around them. 

Imagine the powerful image had they decided to DRIVE from Detroit, a convoy of maybe 15 cars, driving straight through to DC.  What a message!  It wouldn't have changed my mind, but it might have made me feel a little softer towards them, believe that they were really doing everything they can to save their respective companies.  

The UAW didn't do themselves any favors, either.  It's obvious that something big has to give on their end, but they just won't budge.  Sorry, no sympathy there from me.

However.  They are obviously getting their money.  Harry Reid stood up and said that they hadn't done so many things, how could we give them more money?  What he was doing was setting the table for a bailout in the next six weeks or so.  The big guys go back to Detroit, fill the in the boxes that Reid & Co. laid out for them.  Then when they come back they'll say, "We did just what you wanted, see?"  And then Washinton will cut their checks.  Watch for it.


CastoCreations said...

If they bailout those companies we are in for a world of hurt. I've read some great articles and opinions from folks way smarter than me ... most say that it will cost MORE jobs (and better, more productive jobs) if the auto companies are bailed out.

Not to mention we are rewarding failure! I am reading a book about the Great Depression. Government meddling just made it last longer. I hope my grandkids don't have to read about how similar meddling made us suffer worse.


ZipperTPartee said...

Complex issue. The big three have made some idiotic choices over the years. Paying assembly line workers $100K/year, health and pension benefits that equal $2,500/car because they kowtowed to the UAW for too many years. That said it's interesting that their products are more popular than ever overseas and that portion of their business has remained profitable. union contracts in overseas plants, no CAFE standards, lower emissions standards, overall less government meddling in their business (more freedom). The federal government has been forcing these guys to design and produce cars that the American consumer does not want (as long as gas is below $3/gallon). This meddling has created inefficiencies on a grand scale. Drill here, drill now and Detroit can keep producing their most profitable product, the SUV. Free market ALWAYS works. If you produce cars that produce smog and have poor gas mileage the consumer will vote with their pocketbook and the product will change. Government intervention just screws it up. Happy Thanksgiving!