Obama administration to “briefly” own GM and impose tough fuel standards

Posted on May 19, 2009

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In a move that should concern anyone with a passing interest in the free market, Reuters is reporting that as part of a planned bankruptcy deal, GM plans to sell healthy assets to a new corporation initially owned by the government. A credit line would be extended to the new company, and the bulk of the $15.4 billion loan would be written off – so much for that taxpayer money being paid back with interest, eh?

If this doesn’t fit the definition of socialism, I don’t know what does. I’m wondering if anyone who disparaged “socialist” comments about Obama might be willing to rethink that criticism. Whether you think these steps are warranted or not, government ownership of one of the cornerstones of American industry is socialism, no if’s, and’s, or but’s about it. Michelle Malkin suggests GM ought to now stand for Government Motors, and she’s right.

On top of this, the Obama administration announced new fuel economy standards that will add up to $1,300 to the price of a vehicle and result in smaller cars that, while perhaps better on gas, are proven by the National Academy of Sciences to be less safe on the roads. Together with Obama car czar Steven Rattner halving the advertising budget for Chrysler, I have to wonder how anyone in the administration thinks this is going to save the auto industry.

Perhaps, instead, it’s not the intention to save the auto industry, but to kill it slowly through overregulation and government ineptness. Hell, that’s already been going on for the last two decades anyway. The fact is that all the taxpayer money shunted toward GM and Chrysler were supposed to stop those two companies from going under, and it now appears they’re going to declare bankruptcy anyway. It makes you wonder if the infusion of federal funds wasn’t supposed to help, but just provide a foot in the front door, paving the way for more government oversight and control. If these GM bankruptcy plans come to pass, the federal government will, with the exception of Ford, effectively own the auto industry. When you consider the massive power it has quickly exercised over the financial and banking industries, it all boils down to greater federal power over multiple aspects of the economy.

With such a stellar track record on managing Social Security, you’ll forgive me if I’m filled with trepidation over the prospect.

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Posted in: News, Politics