Back to the Trough for $21.6 Billion

Back in December, General Motors (GM) and Chrysler were unilaterally and unconstitutionally issued a $13.4 billion ‘loan’ by the George W. Bush (R) administration out of the 700 billion dollars that had been intended by Congress for a bailout of the banking and finance industry. This unprecedented intrusion by the federal government into private industry—executed by a Republican president who wanted to top-off an unconstitutional bailout by unconstitutionally ignoring what Congress told him to do with it—came with a requirement that the recipients develop and deliver detailed plans for their future viability.

GM and Chrysler delivered those plans today with an unsurprising revelation that the $13.4 billion they just got wasn’t enough, and they would need at least $21.6 billion more of your and my money in new ‘loans’ to save themselves from their own mismanagement. Let me write the next part of the story for our legislators and our new president: in six months, they’ll have burned through the $21.6 billion and they’ll come back to you asking for $43.2 billion. Six months after that, they’ll come back desperately needing $25.4 billion. Shall I go on?

Enough already. The government can—and should—call in the $13.4 loans for immediate repayment and refuse to provide any more support for an industry that cannot sustain itself. GM and Chrysler can bring themselves back to viability most efficiently by entering Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which will allow them to renegotiate (or, better yet, eliminate) the United Auto Workers (UAW) contracts that are sucking them dry. This is their best chance for success, not another mindless federal handout.

I would tell you to write your congressmen and President Barack Obama (D) asking them to oppose this idiocy, but widespread public opposition to the $700b bailout last year, the auto bailout last year, and the new $800b ‘stimulus’ bailout Obama signed into law today didn’t stop any of those things from happening.

I weep for the republic.

Scott Bradford has been putting his opinions on his website since 1995—before most people knew what a website was. He has been a professional web developer in the public- and private-sector for over twenty years. He is an independent constitutional conservative who believes in human rights and limited government, and a Catholic Christian whose beliefs are summarized in the Nicene Creed. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from George Mason University. He loves Pink Floyd and can play the bass guitar . . . sort-of. He’s a husband, pet lover, amateur radio operator, and classic AMC/Jeep enthusiast.