Bailout Or No, Big Three Gets Theirs

Quietly, as attention has focused on the $700 billion Wall Street bailout plan, Detroit automakers are thisclose to getting at least $25 billion in direct loans from Congress to help them produce new high-fuel-efficiency vehicles.

The House authorized the loans yesterday -- which were included in last year's Energy Bill -- and the Senate is set to vote as early as Friday, which President Bush is expected to sign off on.

The loans will be available to automakers and parts manufacturers and, depending on which plants qualify, could be used to pay for converting truck plants into plants that make smaller hybrid cars, for instance.

The automakers -- General Motors, Ford and Chrysler -- have asked for an additional $25 billion over the next two years, but other matters (coughcough$700billioncoughcough) may short-circuit that request.

-- Frank Ahrens

September 25, 2008; 6:55 PM ET  | Category:  business
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Sure - reward the greedy b******ds that got lots from their SUVS, Hummers, big trucks and other gas guzzlers - give them $25 billion of our money!

Let the foreclosures continue, no college loans, more unemployment - but give the Big Three more money to use in their plants and factories in other countries.

No wonder so many of us are so fed up with our government and its freebies for big business, savings and loans, airlines and now the auto industry. All any big business has to do with this administration and Congress is yell loud enough and they get money. Maybe we, the taxpayers, need to start yelling louder!

Posted by: AZrebel | September 25, 2008 7:19 PM

Oh fine, give them a loan, but I suppose we're too timid to say we want the whole fleet turned into hybrids by 2015. And what about those auto company CEO salaries?? Oh woe is us. Corporate America OWNS us and our "elected" representatives.

Posted by: Argghhh | September 25, 2008 7:21 PM

Isn't it bad enough we're rewarding Wall St. for greed and stupidity? Now we have to reward Detroit for incompetence? Whose fault is it that they're building cars nobody wants?

Posted by: Michelle, Nevada | September 25, 2008 7:21 PM

Hey Congress, while you're at it... can I have a loan for a new hybrid? My car is getting kind of old. And then when gas prices go down since everyone has a hybrid... can I have another loan for a new SUV?

Are these really loans? Will the government ever see this money again?

Posted by: Needanewcar | September 25, 2008 7:38 PM

Loans for 3 companies that among the worst managed in the world. Their CEO repeated the same mistakes at the same companies from 30 years ago. They got huge bonuses and increased dividends rather than invest in products. Only way this should happen if the top 50 leaders at those companies resign.

Posted by: GB3 | September 25, 2008 7:43 PM

Oh, WTF!!?!! Too little too late. Is T. Boone Pickens lobbying for this? Please. Pickens ought to stop the ads already - people won't buy natural gas-run cars when they realize how flammable they are.

Why are we rewarding Detroit that screwed it up in the first place? I guess we ARE that stoopid. Canada's looking better and better.

Posted by: Caroline | September 25, 2008 7:43 PM

The Congress does not have the power to transfer this much power to the Executive Branch, without amending the Constitution. This bailout of Wall Street robber barons is a massive restructuring or our government and financial systems that should not be made without modifying the Constitution.

This move will change the entire power relationship between the Congress and the Executive Branch, as well as the power relationship between American citizens and our government. To give governmental powers and obligations to financial institutions over our populace is clearly outside of the realm of the Constitution.

There is no sunset provision on many of the main powers granted by this legislation and thus these powers will become a permanent change to our government.

Let's face the truth and respond accordingly. The same political sellouts in Washington, DC who have been giving big business and liberal social agendas anything they want have been doing the same behind the scenes by removing most of the laws and regulation management on that level as well.

Over the last ten years they have removed or ignored most of the regulations that were put in place to assure another great depression never happened again.

They are desperate for more power and money to delay the inevitable and to assure that your average American citizen takes on most of the burden! Including bailing out foreign banks that are in the U.S.!

So, we have a President with approval ratings in the low 20 percentiles rushing out to ask a Congress with a 9% approval rating to give them unprecedented powers, amnesty from oversight and court prosecutions, and another 700 Billion+ dollars guaranteed by the taxpayers and the full force of the American government to extract that money and interest from us all. They have made slaves of us!

They say the power and funds must be delivered within days to avoid a global economic meltdown that will have dire consequences for us all.

It's a shame to think that there are many Americans left in our nation who believe a word of what comes out of the mouths of any of these traitors in the Bush administration. Politicians in Washington, DC are fearful of losing their jobs if the true economic consequences manifest BEFORE election day, instead of after, and thus the politicians give the appearance of doing something huge.

First, there is no assurance or even likelihood that this unprecedented bailout and amnesty for Wall Street traders will work. They have already thrown hundreds of billions of dollars of your money into bailouts for Barons, Fannie Mack, Fanny May, and AIG. The 700B+ more they claim they need this week is probably what they estimate is needed to prevent the collapse till after Nov 4, 2008 which is election day.

The requested bailout bill would establish unprecedented powers for the Executive Branch to keep borrowing large sums, many analysts believe that the true costs could range between 1 to 5.5 Trillion dollars of your money!

They want the power to designate private financial companies and banks "as financial agents of the Government, and they shall perform all such reasonable duties related to this Act as financial agents of the Government as may be required of them" (Sect. 2-B-3).

Upon passage of this legislation, going to the bank will be similar to going to the DMV, tax offices, or any government agency. The banks will be more under the control of the Executive Branch and inversely your bankers will be your government. MORE FREEDOM TAKEN AND BIG BROTHER WATCHING!!

The secretary will be allowed to buy and sell mortgage securities and then use the funds from any sales to pay for administrative costs and other measures in this program, instead of returning the funds to the taxpayers.

The real kicker is found in Section 8, where it reads "Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency."

No more power and money in exchange for their failures!

Let the financial chips fall where they may and let the market corrections occur and if the consequences for the American public are dire, let us shift through the ashes and rubble of their greed and the excess created to determine how and why this happened. Let Congress use their investigatory power to launch inquiries to determine who should have their assets seized and who is going to prison for this treachery.

This monopoly game is over. It is time to enforce the rules and start over. It is time for many of those in high places to go to jail!

Posted by: AJAX | September 25, 2008 11:27 PM

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