FORD LUCK, GENERAL MOTORS PLUCK
Re: G. Tracy Mehan, III's Ford Is a Better Idea:
I am getting tired of reading about how great Ford is (it is, but that is beside point) simply because it had the fortune (or misfortune) to be in far worse shape than GM before the economic tsunami smacked ALL of the worlds auto producing elite.
Ford went to Wall Street a few years ago, leveraged and mortgaged all of its assets, including the blue oval and the glass house, to raise the capital it needed to survive, let alone survive the severe economic downturn.
Ford got its money, good for it.
When GM went to the street to do the same GM was told "Sorry, no money to lend...have a good day."
GM was out of cash. That tends to happen to large auto companies when sales volumes worldwide are cut in half due to the recession. The choices were now to either beg the government for a loan or go out of business. Liquidate. Now that may have seemed like a good idea to all the pure capitalists in the world, but GM going under would have had catastrophic effect on the Michigan economy and huge effects on the USA and world economies. Not exactly prudent in the middle of a huge recession. Ford and the rest of the "model" car companies (i.e. Toyota -- not such a great model after all, eh?) would have been in serious trouble as well, because most of the suppliers would have went belly up when GM quit paying the bills.
It wouldn't have just effected Michigan either -- California? Smug, arrogant, Prius driving fools, Guess which company buys the most from your Silicon Valley? It ain't Toyota.
We shipped billions of dollars to Katrina victims, Billions of dollars to bail out Greece, hundreds of billions to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan, but to save the world's largest automaker, a victim more of economic circumstances than of "poor management" as the pundits like to decry, well, we just can't do that, can we? That would be a crime. How many tax dollars have Iraqis or New Orleans contributed to the U.S. Treasury over the years vs. what GM has "contributed"? How many of you smug east coast pundits were part of the "arsenal of democracy", helping us win WW2? But when GM needs a hand, sorry, what have you done for me lately?
Yes, GM made mistakes -- most of these mistakes can be attributed to basically creating the middle class in America, for God's sake, to deals made long before global competition shrank market share -- in hindsight, bad business, at the time, taking care of your workers. No one was complaining then.
GM has plenty of outstanding vehicles, the best fleet from A to Z in the world; gas miser cars to full fledged SUV's/Trucks. GM sold the most vehicle worldwide in April, even with the "Government Motors" shadow hanging over their heads -- you don't do that unless you have the products. The government didn't just come in from on high and develop these vehicles, they were in the hopper long before they stepped foot here.
Yes, GM overpaid workers (held hostage by the UAW) and provided health care and pensions to its retirees -- shameful actions, no doubt, but guess who gets to pay for all that now (taxpayers). Congratulations.
Look at Ford's balance sheet -- it owes as much money as GM -- except it owes it to creditors, GM owes it to the taxpayers.
Since the taxpayers had to bail out most of the money lenders on Wall Street, de facto, Ford owes the same people (us) for the money it borrowed.
So crucify GM all you want and praise Ford to the high heavens for its "luck" of being on the brink of bankruptcy when there was still private money to be borrowed.
-- Mark Bruni
Shelby Township, Michigan
BLINDED BY HATE
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.'s The Times Square Surprise:
Mr. Tyrrell wrote in conclusion today, "Returning to the Liberals' sympathetic treatment of fundamentalist Islam, let me proffer an explanation. Liberals are sympathetic to it because it is anti-American and anti-Western. In fact, that is the only explanation. Liberals such as Mayor Bloomberg are not very comfortable with their fellow Americans. That is one of history's surprises." Always the gentlemen, he. His explanation seemingly attributes liberals' antipathy to their countrymen as a reasoned, almost calculated, response along the lines of "the enemy of my enemy is my friend". Or at least another pseudo victim-mascot in whose name they can presume to denigrate their own civilization. But, shockingly, Mr. Tyrrell errs on two counts, for it should be of no surprise by now, least of all to Mr. Tyrrell, and it is not the only explanation.
My take is a little less forgiving and far more basic. I credit modern liberalism's 100 year running hatred of all things western to a good old fashioned, deeply rooted misanthropy under a veneer of sneering condescension. Liberals simply hate their fellow man and gussy it up with high-falutin' sounding "causes." Like energy itself, their hatred is indestructible and undiminishable but simply changes forms. Some of their pet peeves began as legitimate complaints or injustices such as civil rights while others, particularly in recent years, are fabricated from whole cloth, i.e., Global Warming. But whatever they're railing against this season all of their complaints eventually reveal two things in common. A license to hate others and a call to oppression, or servitude, depending on whether one stands with them or in their sights. And if you're a victim-mascot wondering where you fit in, those saddle sores are a good clue.
No matter what the "issue" their remedies are always the same at bottom -- anti-human, anti-individual and anti-life but only for others, never themselves. And though they appear cowardly in their hate given there never really was and is not now real danger to themselves in it, it's always easiest to hate those closest to you. Indeed, it's almost a prerequisite, for to hate truly and wholly requires familiarity. There can be no more satisfying hate than the hate of one's own because is not the hate of a kindred fellow's shortcomings itself not proof of one's own more finely tuned sensibilities and superiority? Hating murderous, seventh-century barbarian weird-beards for what they do is a no brainer for pikers but hating family, neighbors and countrymen for who they are requires an attuned, higher consciousness capable of making finer distinctions, no? Yea, such as these are the proper targets of an exquisite awareness traveling on a higher plane.
But what of right and wrong? If deploring the disparities between our ideals and acts over the obvious evil confronting us is proof of a greater sensitivity can that sensitivity not at least see that our overall good outweighs our transgressions? That before there can be a "transgression" there must first be a higher ideal to violate but at least we profess the ideal? And that our failings are held to be just that whereas the very ideals of our enemies are the embodiment of what we see as transgression? That what the adversary proclaims as his goal is the deadly antithesis of all those ideals our liberals claim to hold dear and for which they never tire of castigating their kin? Again, demanding such inquiry would presuppose reason and calculation in our liberals but in truth, they simply hate. Aren't they the ones forever lecturing that hatred blinds? Obviously, they know whereof they speak. And before they could descend to where they hate their own, for hate's sake, more than those who've declared all they hold dear must be overthrown they had to imbibe the oldest hate of all- to hate God. That is why for all of their blather they can no longer discern right from wrong, good from evil, truth from falsehood, beauty from ugliness, freedom from slavery or the imperfect individual next door from a writhing mass of human pathologies to be fixed somehow or eliminated. Even the barbarians know better than they and is why I always say to them, "they'll cut your throat first."
-- Mark Shepler
"Surprise, surprise -- yet the Liberals' response to Islamofascism surprises me more."
Actually I am surprised that Mr. Tyrrell is surprised. Remember what he wrote in the The Liberal Crack Up about Liberals and their behaviour, "the means must obliterate the end." They are still on target.
-- Gregg Dippold
Re: Larry Thornberry's Foyle'd Again:
We too in our tiny Seattle-area bungalow are delighted to see some intelligent drama return to the Wasteland on Sunday nights.
Thanks for giving this good British production a plug.
-- Jack Bowdle
LOWEST COMMON DENOMINATOR
Re: Doug Bandow's China and Us:
What ridiculous claptrap. Wait until the Chinese middle class, less than 5 percent of the population today, passes 10 percent and China becomes more of a welfare state as its politicians pander to the lowest common denominator, as they do in the West. Then the cry "taxation without representation" will arise throughout the Middle Kingdom, with predictable results: revolution.
-- Douglas Herz
WHAT'S TO IKE?
Re: Philip Klein's Will Petraeus Be Like Ike:
This article was outstanding. However, Klein in speculating on the general’s future in politics makes the statement that the general’s “…name won’t lend itself to a jingle akin to 'We like Ike’.”
O yeah, how about "Petraeus won't betray us!"?
Blows the puny “I like Ike” out of the water!
-- John F. DuPriest
Re: Matt Purple's Why They Hate:
Mr. Purple, you give an astute analysis of the situation. The lefties' narrative is the one they learned from certain insecure college professors: if you don't agree with them, you are a hick, redneck, moron, and someone unable to recognize their innate superiority and their manifest qualifications for running every aspect of your life. The next time I meet one of these Marxist snobs, I'm going to flash my MENSA card! Keep on rockin', Mr. Purple.
Re: Jay D. Homnick's Rush Was Right(er):
Good column Jay. But I suspect if you peel the onion back enough, you'll find corruption as the motivation for Wall Street -- not altruism. The alliance between Wall Street and Washington is as un-holy as they come.
Re: F. Vincent Vernuccio's Seeing Red:
I recently talked to a crane operator on a job that I hired equipment for. He had been a operators union member for years. He had not had work for months until he went to work for a non union company. He put in 70 hours the week before and he was happy as hell. Unions are destroying the earning potential for million of people just to keep their leaders and fat an happy.
Re: Mark Tooley's Methodist Dixie:
Thank you for an uplifting and encouraging story in an otherwise dismal national morass that is over this country during the Obama years!