Another $25 billion handout for the Big Three?
America’s Big Three want another $25 billion from the government — which means, from us taxpayers.
Maybe we have a right to ask for something in return?
The free market is a great idea; problem is, we don’t have one anymore. When the archetypical Joe the Plumber’s books don’t balance — when he’s not earning enough to stay afloat - well, he usually doesn’t. Time to try again. Or maybe not.
Let’s face it: Not every business is a great idea; not every person destined to “make it.”
That is the essence of free market capitalism — right?
So why do different rules apply to the big guys, like GM, Ford, and Chrysler?
They (more specifically, their management) made some horrendous decisions that have led directly to the current mess they find themselves in. Yet not only are the companies not being allowed to suffer Joe the Plumber’s fate — the people responsible for the decisions are allowed to profit from failure. While GM, Ford and Chrysler’s fortunes are swirling around the bowl, headed for the Great Big Flush, their CEOs are collecting multi-million dollar paychecks. Reportedly, Ford’s current honcho — former Boeing executive Alan Mulally — bagged $30 million… to preside over the biggest downturn in Ford’s business since, well, ever.
It’s a similar story over at GM — and what’s left of Chrysler. The top guys are “earning” millions every year even as their companies are losing millions every month.
Meanwhile, there is talk of doing a Lorenzo (remember him?) on retired Big Three workers, whose pension and health-care costs are — supposedly — ruining the business.
The claim being that these “legacy costs” are crippling American automakers’ competitiveness by adding (roughly) $1,500 to the final retail cost of each car they sell.
Of course, no one ever mentions the $30 million forked over to Mulally, et al. CEOs never take a pay cut — or lose a benefit.
And what, exactly, did Mulally and his fellow CEOs do to justify such boodle?
If the automakers were raking it in hand over fist — record profits, expanding market share — then hey, bully for the CEOs. They would have, you know, earned their compensation. But in what la-la universe can you, on the one hand, say a CEO presiding over a sea of red ink and recurrent failure is entitled to more money in six months’ time than most of us will see in a lifetime (or three lifetimes)…while a guy who worked on the line for 20 or 30 years who receives say $1,000 a month in pension and health care benefits ought to do without?
Keep in mind, these aren’t entitlements or “welfare.” A guy signs on with, say, GM in 1965 and part of his employment contract — part of his agreed-to compensation package — is “x” dollars in pension/health care benefits. So the guy puts in his 20 or 30 years — and plans for his retirement in part on the assumption that those benefits will be there.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online