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Why are we bailing out the auto industry?

Democrats, including Barack Obama, have been making a lot of noise lately about a bailout for the auto industry, setting them up for a "crash" with Bush. Amazingly, i'm with Bush on this one. I'm aware that the auto industry is still a source of good paying manufacturing jobs for a decent number of Americans. But this is an industry that has shipped a lot of those jobs overseas, and it is already planning for another series of layoffs that will happen no matter how much money the government throws at it. The auto industry for decades has resisted stronger regulation in terms of mileage, safety, and environmental standards. It also refused to adapt to a changing market; as gas prices have continued to rise, they have stuck to building gas guzzling cars and trucks, while using monopoly tactics to destroy small business electric car innovators. I recognize that it will "hurt" in the short term, but if these companies can't survive on their own, i don't see why we should be artificially propping them up. Something will come along to fill in that vacuum, and it can only be better than what we have now. We have to get rid of this "too big to fail" mentality. And if we absolutely must keep them running in order to prevent a depression, then the government should take them over 100%, and the break them up and sell them to new owners after the crisis is averted.

By fnord12 | November 12, 2008, 9:09 AM | Liberal Outrage


I'm actually with you on this 100%, but man, living in a small post-mining town 20 miles from a GM plant that employed most of this town, and watching it shut down as the world economy collapses?

Fucking scary shit.

They're laying off 10% of the College staff THIS WEEK. 40+ positions. And we're in an Ivory Tower, so I can't imagine what the folks that relied on GM are doing. Our town is already too small for even a Target. I feel like Steinbeck! (But then, I can afford to feel like Steinbeck instead of one of the people jumping off the roof of their rotting victorian houses).

if not for the economic collapse, the auto industry would have laid off those people eventually anyway, as they ship the work oversees.

the bailout should be for the people. it shouldn't be for the auto industry. That's more trickle down theory - help out the industry who will then employ the people. except, they don't. they take that money to prop up the company, pay the CEOs and other execs and then continue to shut down factories and move them out of the country where operation costs are cheaper.

just look at how many times companies like Ford had layoffs even before this most recent economic crisis. they're just using it as a convenient excuse now to get a handout. they are the real welfare moms.