Obama, The Tyrant Who Runs General Motors

PatriotPost.USWednesday Chronicle Vol. 09 No. 13 1 April 2009

THE FOUNDATION "[O]f those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people; commencing demagogues, and ending tyrants." --Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 1

EDITORIAL EXEGESIS "Well, at least now we know who's running General Motors. The Obama White House, in an extraordinary expansion of the government's reach, Sunday demanded and got the head of Rick Wagoner, the automaker's embattled chief executive. In doing so, the president brushed aside GM's board of directors, selected by shareholders and entrusted with the power to hire and fire executives, and assumed that role for himself. ... Shareholders can read the handwriting on the wall -- this isn't their company anymore. That's the risk you take when you go hat in hand to Washington. It ought to be a red flag for other companies and industries that might be thinking a federal bailout is the answer for surviving the recession. President Barack Obama is using the $13.4 billion in federal loans as leverage to re-create GM in the image of a Washington with little apparent affinity for manufacturers. ... The president also needs a scalp to wave before both a Congress growing queasy about federal bailouts and the automaker's bondholders, who aren't happy about granting a huge discount on their GM debt. The trick now is to find someone to run the automaker. Good luck with the headhunting. How many top-notch corporate executives will jump at the chance to lead a company that is sinking like a rock? Who will be willing to share the corporate suite with federal bureaucrats? And by the way, the job pays a buck a year, and if you need to fly, it better be coach. Running a tobacco company has to have more appeal." --The Detroit News

UPRIGHT "There has always been a line ... which no president would cross, with respect to the distinction between the public and private sectors. Obama has now crossed that line. There is no limit to government's destruction of private activity or control over it." --radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh

"[W]hy isn't Obama's special auto task force ordering a replacement for Ron Gettelfinger, the UAW's president? Weren't their oversized pay and benefit packages a big part of the problem? Well, that's never gonna happen. The election power of the union is too strong. But this does reveal the political nature of these government bailout operations." --economist Lawrence Kudlow

"We are seeing the biggest power grab by politicians in American history. The idea that they would propose that the Treasury could intervene and take over non-bank, non-financial system assets gives them the potential to basically create the equivalent of a dictatorship." --former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich

"If you listen to the principal spokesmen for U.S. economic policy -- Obama and Geithner -- they grow daily ever more explicitly hostile to the private sector and ever more comfortable with the language of micromanaged government-approved capitalism -- which, of course, isn't capitalism at all." --columnist Mark Steyn

"The financial markets are sluggish, but they are functioning. It's time to wind down the bailouts -- and get the federal government out of the way." --Heritage Foundation president Ed Feulner

THE DEMO-GOGUES Extreme abuse of power: "While GM has made a good faith effort to restructure over the past several months, the plan they have put forward is, in its current form, not strong enough. However, after broad consultations with a range of industry experts and financial advisors, I'm confident that GM can rise again, provided that it undergoes a fundamental restructuring. As an initial step ... Rick Wagoner is stepping aside as Chairman and CEO. ... In this context, my administration will offer General Motors adequate working capital over the next 60 days. During this time, my team will be working closely with GM to produce a better business plan. ... Let me be clear: The United States government has no interest or intention of running GM." --Barack Obama

Government warranty: "If you buy a car from Chrysler or General Motors, you will be able to get your car serviced and repaired just like always. Your warranty will be safe. In fact, it will be safer than it's ever been because ... the United States government will stand behind your warranty." --usurper in chief Barack Obama **What was that about "no interest in running GM"?

Another czar -- who has no interest in running GM, of course: "I am designating a new Director of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers to cut through red tape and ensure that the full resources of our federal government are leveraged to assist the workers, communities, and regions that rely on our auto industry." --Barack Obama

It won't if you leave it alone: "We cannot, we must not, and we will not let our auto industry simply vanish." --Barack Obama Wrong: "The market will not solve this. And the great risk for us is we do too little, not that we do too much." --Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner

Gun grabbers: "[T]here's no doubt in my mind that the 10 years we had an assault weapons ban in America was one of the tools that helped to drive down the crime rate." --Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Mexico City discussing Mexico's drug crime **If by "drive down" she means "had no effect whatsoever," she's correct.

Corruption is as corruption does: "If I'm corrupt, it's because I take care of my district." --Rep. John Murtha (D-PA)