The Automaker ‘Bail-out’ – Congressional Hypocrisy

I’m not one to defend the stupid things that the automakers have done over the years, but it really gets my goat to hear these overpaid, pompous and self-righteous congressmen acting like they know anything at all about the auto industry! Has there been an accounting of the congressmen, regarding what cars and, more likely, SUVs they drive? Are they driving sensible American cars, sensible foreign cars, or are they driving luxury cars? How many Cadillac Escalades? How many Mercedes-Benz S-classes? Are the houses of the hypocrites in order before they start throwing stones at Detroit for its irresponsibility?

Detroit’s current crisis isn’t the sole result of its bad decisions and its failure to act appropriately in response to foreign competition. Throwing billions of dollars at them isn’t going to free up the credit, ALSO paid for by the taxpayers, that is the most immediate reason why people aren’t buying cars, domestic OR foreign. Nor can Detroit – or Toyota or Honda, either, for that matter – magically begin building ‘responsible’ cars before another injection of billions of dollars would be necessary.

Detroit hasn’t been building cars that Americans don’t want – they spend millions to make sure the cars they build are EXACTLY what Americans want, up to the limit where they become too expensive, at which point they buy U.S.-built ‘foreign’ cars, built without all of the union and pension liabilities with which the U.S. automakers are saddled. Let the domestic automakers off the union hooks and maybe the money they spend will be visible in their products and not just in their retirees’ pensions.

In the meantime, however, the congressmen need to see just whose pockets THEY are in as they write stupefying regulations that prevent the Big 3 from selling, in the U.S., efficient cars they DO build, overseas. Which congressmen are beholden to the insurance lobbyists that add to the cost of developing and building cars? Or to the unions?

In addition to a loan, the automakers could use a moratorium on ridiculous ‘safety’ regulations that are nothing but a way for insurance companies to reduce their payouts – they’re certainly not about ‘safety.’ You can’t tell us that the EU and Japan don’t care about the safety of THEIR car buyers. Detroit simply cannot design, engineer, test and produce the cars these half-wit congressmen are trying to hold them hostage with, in time to get back to solvency. So let’s have a moratorium for, say, 5 years – they CAN create the next generation of cars in that time – during which they can not only immediately import cars they sell overseas, but can also install the tooling for them in American factories and put U.S. workers back to work building them.

And since this is a GLOBAL crisis, the global community needs to get together during that time and establish GLOBAL standards that will allow any automaker, anywhere in the world, to produce cars that can be SOLD anywhere in the world.

Congress have no place talking down to the U.S. automakers – they are equally guilty for the dire straits in which we all find ourselves. And if they complain about gas-guzzlers being built, they’d better be able to prove they don’t have one in their garage or on Capitol Hill.

Posted: December 8th, 2008
at 2:37pm by admin

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Categories: Ptrivial Thoughts, Indeed!

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