I almost went to Ball State

I watched on TV while congress interviewed the executives from the Big Three. but what was the big news of the day, besides the fact that the Senate has pulled a scheduled vote on appropriating funds for the auto industry? the three executives all rode in private jets to Washington! when they could have taken coach! the fucking humanity!

Phil says millions of jobs are at stake. that’s what I’ve read, too. this is important shit. Michigan will be reduced to rubble. beefs will move from the courts, and into thunderdome. Detroit will be roamed by armed gangs of cannibals.
so with all of this about to crash down, I think it’s really self-serving for politicians to focus on bullshit like executive pay, on private jets, on bonuses. yes, it’s bullshit, yes, they don’t deserve it. but really, who fucking cares? they’re talking about billions of dollars, the collapse of the American auto industry, and lots of peoples’ livelihoods. golden parachutes shouldn’t be the first priority when we’re about to experience The Great Depression II.

also, I made lasagna. with turkey. and it came out well!



8 comments so far

  1. Smith on

    For me it’s not about them saving 15K by flying commercial or getting millions in executive pay, it’s from them still not admitting that they did anything wrong. It’s about them asking for money, laying off their workforce, asking for more concessions, but refusing to make even the most slightest of sacrifices because when you boil it down they don’t really give a shit about the people under them. If they could get away with it those assholes would bleed the union, its workers and the American taxpayer fucking dry before they gave up a god damn thing or took any responsibility for the mess they made themselves.

    I’m conflicted about this bailout. I understand the necessity, but we are dealing with an industry whose leadership simply refuses to take responsibility for the actions that led them here. They’re standing in front of Congress and blaming the entire fallout of the auto industry on the financial meltdown. I’m sorry but GM, Ford and Chrysler were losing money hand over fist well before the market tanked. Their stocks have been garbage for a long time and their product has sucked for even longer. They want to blame legacy costs, the economy, the union, unfair foreign competition, anything and everything except their own incompetence for their troubles. Yeah they have higher costs, but just because something is more expensive does not mean it can’t sell. If they made a car that people really wanted, people would buy it even if it’s more expensive. People will buy an iPhone over some other smart phone even though it is more expensive because they want an iPhone (and in a lot of cases the iPhone is a better product than the other options). If GM actually listened to what we wanted instead of telling us what we wanted they would probably not be begging for 25 billion dollars right now.

    They fought until the bitter end on increasing CAFÉ standards. It’s pathetic. In 2007 we mandated CAFE be raised to 35 mpg by 2020. So in 12 years we will be at levels that are already surpassed right now by Europe and Asia. Let’s put aside the obvious environmental reasons why this should have been done (which are more important) and just focus on the economic reasons. We aren’t even allowed to sell most of our cars overseas because of this shit, and still they fought it. I don’t understand how we can let such incompetence continue to lead such an important industry. If we are going to allow this bailout to move forward, I refuse to support anything if the present leadership remains.

    I’ve somewhat backed myself into a corner because I was hard on politicians for trying to sink the financial bailout. I supported the financial bailout because, much more so than the auto industry, the country HAS to have money flowing for the economy to work. When the meltdown happened the credit markets were completely frozen and large corporations, small businesses and individuals were completely shut out from attaining loans. Stable companies like the hotel chain Marriott for example were canceling new hotel projects because they couldn’t secure funding, local municipalities and cities had to cancel city improvements and public work projects because they were not able to secure bonds. This was happening throughout Indiana and entire country. I didn’t like it one bit, but something drastic had to be done. Of course the Bush Administration was able to show us at least one last time why they are the scummiest most incompetent assholes to ever hold the White House because they didn’t know until now how to appropriately use and divert the money.

    I’m just so sick and tired of these assholes and if they need this money to survive I will gladly hold it over their heads and dictate my terms. If they don’t like it then they can go fuck themselves. Too big to fail is becoming a term used far too often. We allowed these companies to become too big to fail. Perhaps it’s time to break them up like we did with AT&T. By the way, we are kidding ourselves if we think 25 billion is all they’ll ask for. The moment they get a loan they’re going to be coming back saying it’s not enough, because they know it’s not enough right now. AIG played their cards perfectly and I expect those dickholes in the auto industry will do the exact same thing. What can we do, say no? We would have already invested 25 billion.

  2. matt on

    I’m so glad I’m able to foster discussion! but I need to be more clear on what I’m talking about.
    the tradition of marching corporate executives out in front of a congressional panel so they can be publicly insulted for three hours doesn’t really do anything for me. doesn’t make my dick move. you want them fired for incompetence? fine by me. put it in the legislation. but for as much as I fantasize about forcing these people into clown suits and marching them over the Memorial Bridge while passersby pelt them with garbage, there’s no real gratification in it. it just gives congressional politicians — you know, those cocksuckers we rightly despise the other 364 days of the year — a chance to get fat off of our rage.
    when I wrote this little blurb last night before I fell asleep, it wasn’t a defense of executives. you’re right, Smith, you’re right. Detroit is failing because of every dumbshit, American-made SUV you see that gets 17 mph when you walk out your door, and that has NOTHING to do with legacy costs or union pay. but it was an attack on making a big issue of executive compensation. we’re talking about billions, upon billions, upon billions of dollars, the possible collapse, the collapse, the collapse of the fucking American auto industry, and the loss of millions of jobs. MILLIONS, with an S, so it’s plural.
    so I don’t especially care if GM’s CEO flies in a private jet. for the amount of money that would change hands in this proposal, shit like corporate benefits are immaterial. but right now, I’d bet that the private jet thing is being discussed in as many American homes as the actual bailout proposal is. right now, I’d bet that a lot of people aren’t talking about how incompetent the leadership is, Smith, and how their IMMEDIATE firing should be part of any rescue package. they’re talking about those private goddamned jets. and that’s bullshit, because it isn’t the real fucking news.
    my point: on CNN.com right now, the headline doesn’t read “Senate shelves auto bailout vote”, it reads “Auto CEOs flew private jets to ask for bailout”. this is right underneath the headline that reads “Jobless claims reach 16-year high”.

  3. el dandy on

    i want a pinto thats electric…. gm did have an ev that people were buying, but, pardon the pun,they pulled the plug on the electric vehicle…why did they do this?? hmm cuz of $$$?
    like michael said, it needs to be a bailout based on our terms… they have the means and tech. to make the electric car, in fact ev’s were born in the early 20th century but killed cuz of greed by the big oil men.
    it does not make sense to keep ev’s on the shelf.
    production of these vehicles will create jobs, lessen our need for foreign oil and,get this, it will be better for the enviroment!

  4. Smith on

    I agree. Somewhat. Like always, places like CNN avoid the actual important part of the news and focus on the stuff that will rile up the average idiot. I’m not surprised, and they’re no different from the rest. We are talking about news organizations that put Jennifer Aniston/Brad Pitt/Angelina Jolie infighting stories above the economy collapsing beneath our feats.

    Its standard practice for politicians to magically become enraged the exact same time the public does, and that’s sad. I’m sorry, but people like us that are even remotely informed about the current goings on of public policy and corporate incompetence and greed have been enraged for a long long time. The political leadership is more informed than any of us and it is a testament to how disconnected they are from the average person that they were not screaming from the mountain top a long time ago, and if they did feel that way they didn’t have the balls to show it. Now do I think it is a bad thing for the leaders of the big three to be suddenly placed under the public microscope? No. I think you would agree that while, yes, their personal actions like flying a private jet are incredibly small and unimportant in the grand scheme of a $25 BILLION bailout, I do find comfort in the fact that at least people are starting to care about such hypocrisy, which in turn makes our elected officials at least pretend like they care. It’s sad that it takes something of this magnitude to focus the people’s attention, but I would argue that it does need to be focused otherwise nothing will ever change; and I have to believe that it can change otherwise what’s the point? But like I said, I agree with you that people are missing the bigger picture.

    I do want to point out that you are going off the very large assumption that filing for bankruptcy will automatically translate into the entire collapse of the U.S. auto industry. Filing for Chapter 11 does not mean that the assembly line worker is going to wake up the next day and be unemployed. It means the company is able to continue to operate but gets a break from its creditors so it can restructure its organization and reorganize its finances so it can become successful again. The point of Chapter 11 is to try and get companies back on their feet, not to kill them. More than likely you’ve flown on an airline that either has in the past, or is currently under Chapter 11. They don’t just disappear.

    Now, I’m not saying such an action would not have very serious consequences or even be the best move. Yeah, they’ll still be able to make cars but there will be a lot of potential buyers out there that might decide not to buy from them because they don’t know for sure if they will be around 5-10 years down the road to uphold the warranties, supply parts or offer repair services. That is a legitimate concern and truth be told I am leaning in favor of bailing them out because I think we can turn it around without filing Chapter 11 if it is done right. If. But I’m also not going to say that I know for sure. For all I know filing for Chapter 11 might be their best move to remain a viable company in the long term. It’s entirely possible that giving these guys their loan will be a complete failure and not only will the companies fail anyway, but we’ll be out $25 billion.

    I think a lot of people aren’t realizing that the big three executives are trying to frame the argument and back us into a corner by claiming if they don’t get help 3 million workers are going to wake up the next morning without a job and all of their suppliers will magically go out of business the following week. That is simply not the case, and if it did happen then the big three are even more incompetent that I originally thought. But like I said, it’s not something that I currently hoping for. There will be ramifications, there will be lost jobs, and if we can avoid that successfully then I’m all for it, but if we automatically assume that we HAVE to give them money then we weaken our own position and increase the likelihood that we are going to fuck this up. And I guarantee that if we rely on the wisdom of the big three to dictate how this money is spent, it will be fucked up.

  5. Raelson on

    I’m all for a public caining.

    oh and they lose all their greedy ass money and it is given to the workers.

  6. matt on

    I’m with Andrew on this one.

  7. Castro, do you have something to say? on

    Why yes I do. They talk about the failure of socialism but where is the success of capitalism in Africa, Asia and Latin America?

  8. Smith on

    leave it to Andrew to bring violence into the equation. You’re going to beat the hell out of your kids.

    Africa, Asia, and Latin America don’t have true capitalistic economies in my opinion, but that’s another discussion.

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