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Thread: Saving the Big 3 for You and Me ...a message from Michael Moore‏

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    another day... Ms. Hershey's Avatar Ms. Hershey is offline
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    Saving the Big 3 for You and Me ...a message from Michael Moore‏

    Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

    Friends,

    I drive an American car. It's a Chrysler. That's not an endorsement. It's more like a cry for pity. And now for a decades-old story, retold ad infinitum by tens of millions of Americans, a third of whom have had to desert their country to simply find a damn way to get to work in something that won't break down:

    My Chrysler is four years old. I bought it because of its smooth and comfortable ride. Daimler-Benz owned the company then and had the good grace to place the Chrysler chassis on a Mercedes axle and, man, was that a sweet ride!

    When it would start.

    More than a dozen times in these years, the car has simply died. Batteries have been replaced, but that wasn't the problem. My dad drives the same model. His car has died many times, too. Just won't start, for no reason at all.

    A few weeks ago, I took my Chrysler in to the Chrysler dealer here in northern Michigan -- and the latest fixes cost me $1,400. The next day, the vehicle wouldn't start. When I got it going, the brake warning light came on. And on and on.

    You might assume from this that I couldn't give a rat's ass about these miserably inept crapmobile makers down the road in Detroit city. But I do care. I care about the millions whose lives and livelihoods depend on these car companies. I care about the security and defense of this country because the world is running out of oil -- and when it runs out, the calamity and collapse that will take place will make the current recession/depression look like a Tommy Tune musical.

    And I care about what happens with the Big 3 because they are more responsible than almost anyone for the destruction of our fragile atmosphere and the daily melting of our polar ice caps.

    Congress must save the industrial infrastructure that these companies control and the jobs they create. And it must save the world from the internal combustion engine. This great, vast manufacturing network can redeem itself by building mass transit and electric/hybrid cars, and the kind of transportation we need for the 21st century.

    And Congress must do all this by NOT giving GM, Ford and Chrysler the $34 billion they are asking for in "loans" (a few days ago they only wanted $25 billion; that's how stupid they are -- they don't even know how much they really need to make this month's payroll. If you or I tried to get a loan from the bank this way, not only would we be thrown out on our ear, the bank would place us on some sort of credit rating blacklist).

    Two weeks ago, the CEOs of the Big 3 were tarred and feathered before a Congressional committee who sneered at them in a way far different than when the heads of the financial industry showed up two months earlier. At that time, the politicians tripped over each other in their swoon for Wall Street and its Ponzi schemers who had concocted Byzantine ways to bet other people's money on unregulated credit default swaps, known in the common vernacular as unicorns and fairies.

    But the Detroit boys were from the Midwest, the Rust (yuk!) Belt, where they made real things that consumers needed and could touch and buy, and that continually recycled money into the economy (shocking!), produced unions that created the middle class, and fixed my teeth for free when I was ten.

    For all of that, the auto heads had to sit there in November and be ridiculed about how they traveled to D.C. Yes, they flew on their corporate jets, just like the bankers and Wall Street thieves did in October. But, hey, THAT was OK! They're the Masters of the Universe! Nothing but the best chariots for Big Finance as they set about to loot our nation's treasury.

    Of course, the auto magnates used be the Masters who ruled the world. They were the pulsating hub that all other industries -- steel, oil, cement contractors -- served. Fifty-five years ago, the president of GM sat on that same Capitol Hill and bluntly told Congress, what's good for General Motors is good for the country. Because, you see, in their minds, GM WAS the country.

    What a long, sad fall from grace we witnessed on November 19th when the three blind mice had their knuckles slapped and then were sent back home to write an essay called, "Why You Should Give Me Billions of Dollars of Free Cash." They were also asked if they would work for a dollar a year. Take that! What a big, brave Congress they are! Requesting indentured servitude from (still) three of the most powerful men in the world. This from a spineless body that won't dare stand up to a disgraced president nor turn down a single funding request for a war that neither they nor the American public support. Amazing.

    Let me just state the obvious: Every single dollar Congress gives these three companies will be flushed right down the toilet. There is nothing the management teams of the Big 3 are going to do to convince people to go out during a recession and buy their big, gas-guzzling, inferior products. Just forget it. And, as sure as I am that the Ford family-owned Detroit Lions are not going to the Super Bowl -- ever -- I can guarantee you, after they burn through this $34 billion, they'll be back for another $34 billion next summer.

    So what to do? Members of Congress, here's what I propose:

    1. Transporting Americans is and should be one of the most important functions our government must address. And because we are facing a massive economic, energy and environmental crisis, the new president and Congress must do what Franklin Roosevelt did when he was faced with a crisis (and ordered the auto industry to stop building cars and instead build tanks and planes): The Big 3 are, from this point forward, to build only cars that are not primarily dependent on oil and, more importantly to build trains, buses, subways and light rail (a corresponding public works project across the country will build the rail lines and tracks). This will not only save jobs, but create millions of new ones.

    2. You could buy ALL the common shares of stock in General Motors for less than $3 billion. Why should we give GM $18 billion or $25 billion or anything? Take the money and buy the company! (You're going to demand collateral anyway if you give them the "loan," and because we know they will default on that loan, you're going to own the company in the end as it is. So why wait? Just buy them out now.)

    3. None of us want government officials running a car company, but there are some very smart transportation geniuses who could be hired to do this. We need a Marshall Plan to switch us off oil-dependent vehicles and get us into the 21st century.

    This proposal is not radical or rocket science. It just takes one of the smartest people ever to run for the presidency to pull it off. What I'm proposing has worked before. The national rail system was in shambles in the '70s. The government took it over. A decade later it was turning a profit, so the government returned it to private/public hands, and got a couple billion dollars put back in the treasury.

    This proposal will save our industrial infrastructure -- and millions of jobs. More importantly, it will create millions more. It literally could pull us out of this recession.

    In contrast, yesterday General Motors presented its restructuring proposal to Congress. They promised, if Congress gave them $18 billion now, they would, in turn, eliminate around 20,000 jobs. You read that right. We give them billions so they can throw more Americans out of work. That's been their Big Idea for the last 30 years -- layoff thousands in order to protect profits. But no one ever stopped to ask this question: If you throw everyone out of work, who's going to have the money to go out and buy a car?

    These idiots don't deserve a dime. Fire all of them, and take over the industry for the good of the workers, the country and the planet.

    What's good for General Motors IS good for the country. Once the country is calling the shots.

  2. #2
    Destra's Harmony Ackee's Avatar Ackee is offline
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    Excellent Article.....but WTF on this one part:

    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Hershey View Post
    In contrast, yesterday General Motors presented its restructuring proposal to Congress. They promised, if Congress gave them $18 billion now, they would, in turn, eliminate around 20,000 jobs. You read that right. We give them billions so they can throw more Americans out of work. That's been their Big Idea for the last 30 years -- layoff thousands in order to protect profits. But no one ever stopped to ask this question: If you throw everyone out of work, who's going to have the money to go out and buy a car?

    Someone point me a link to that proposal!!!

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    if ah rude ah rude 1trini-gyal's Avatar 1trini-gyal is offline
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    very well put...but will anyone listen?

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    if ah rude ah rude 1trini-gyal's Avatar 1trini-gyal is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ackee View Post
    Excellent Article.....but WTF on this one part:


    Someone point me a link to that proposal!!!
    Contempo Magazine Blog Blog Archive General Motors Proposal Does Not Look Realisitic

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    Spoogie
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    Fuk that slob... he needs to shut up. The biatch just love listening to himself.

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    Gangsta Boogie Bake n Shark's Avatar Bake n Shark is offline
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    The very fact that people are paying this dude any mind is what is hilarious... since when do we take economic pointers from Michael Moore?

    He want's to talk about the election being stolen then fine. Tobacco companies... the environment getting raped. No problem.


    ... but he should really leave the heavy lifting on the economy to people with some actually brain power.

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    another day... Ms. Hershey's Avatar Ms. Hershey is offline
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    he makes some very valid points. this country really does laud the financial sector in the same way it used to laud the industrial sector. there's definitely a disconnect and the fact that no one is mentioning the thousands of jobs that will be lost through this "bail out" is disturbing to me. i doubt anyone will listen though...

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    if ah rude ah rude 1trini-gyal's Avatar 1trini-gyal is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bake n Shark View Post
    The very fact that people are paying this dude any mind is what is hilarious... since when do we take economic pointers from Michael Moore?

    He want's to talk about the election being stolen then fine. Tobacco companies... the environment getting raped. No problem.


    ... but he should really leave the heavy lifting on the economy to people with some actually brain power.
    So who are the folks with the brain power? The ones in charge seem to be lacking.

    What points do you disagree with?

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    Gangsta Boogie Bake n Shark's Avatar Bake n Shark is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms. Hershey View Post
    he makes some very valid points. this country really does laud the financial sector in the same way it used to laud the industrial sector. there's definitely a disconnect and the fact that no one is mentioning the thousands of jobs that will be lost through this "bail out" is disturbing to me. i doubt anyone will listen though...
    I'm not necessarily arguing for a bailout... but should all three (or even one of the three) fail... wouldn't jobs be lost regardless? One of the conditions of the bailouts will likely be cost-cutting measures... you don't expect that bloated union salaries will be among the first to go?

    I'm as pro-union as the next man but auto workers have been able to extract unrivaled salaries and benefits from US auto makers that the foreign car manufacturers haven't had to deal with.. part of the reason why they're so profitable relative to the 'Big 3'.

    He makes some nice-sounding points... whether they're valid or not is an entirely different issue altogether.
    Quote Originally Posted by 1trini-gyal View Post
    So who are the folks with the brain power? The ones in charge seem to be lacking.

    What points do you disagree with?
    Folks with brain power are the ones with actual training in finance and economics... not every businessman has a sound financial or economic background. The heads of these companies are businessmen first... so an indictment of their leadership of the companies doesn't mean that economists et al don't have better answers than Michael Moore.


    What points I disagree with? Jingoistic nonsense such as:

    And Congress must do all this by NOT giving GM, Ford and Chrysler the $34 billion they are asking for in "loans" (a few days ago they only wanted $25 billion; that's how stupid they are -- they don't even know how much they really need to make this month's payroll. If you or I tried to get a loan from the bank this way, not only would we be thrown out on our ear, the bank would place us on some sort of credit rating blacklist).
    Where are the economic underpinings in this statement? Don't bother looking, there are none... he's just looking for a quick laugh by trivializing the situation.

    At that time, the politicians tripped over each other in their swoon for Wall Street and its Ponzi schemers who had concocted Byzantine ways to bet other people's money on unregulated credit default swaps, known in the common vernacular as unicorns and fairies.
    Not all of Wall Street invested in credit swaps... but you wouldn't know this from reading this. "Ponzi scheme"? And I'm supposed to take this seriously?
    But, hey, THAT was OK! They're the Masters of the Universe! Nothing but the best chariots for Big Finance as they set about to loot our nation's treasury.
    Let me just state the obvious: Every single dollar Congress gives these three companies will be flushed right down the toilet. There is nothing the management teams of the Big 3 are going to do to convince people to go out during a recession and buy their big, gas-guzzling, inferior products. Just forget it. And, as sure as I am that the Ford family-owned Detroit Lions are not going to the Super Bowl -- ever -- I can guarantee you, after they burn through this $34 billion, they'll be back for another $34 billion next summer.
    ...and what qualifies him to make these pronouncements... his MBA from the Wharton School of Business or his date last night with Ms. Cleo?

    Again, he trivializes the situation for a few cheap yuks. What he says resonates with the common man so it sounds reasonable, but again, his position is buffeted by what exactly? What's the economic rationale behind it?
    the new president and Congress must do what Franklin Roosevelt did when he was faced with a crisis (and ordered the auto industry to stop building cars and instead build tanks and planes): The Big 3 are, from this point forward, to build only cars that are not primarily dependent on oil and, more importantly to build trains, buses, subways and light rail
    FDR had significantly more power then than the current President does now. Much of the economic policies that FDR undertook was radical even in his day, and has since been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

    When the national railway industry collapsed the government established Amtrak... which has been run by the government ever since... it hasn't been returned to private hands unlike what he states. Rail travel failed precisely because of the boom in automobiles, there was too much competition and too little interest in rail travel. The parallels with the current crisis is false, as is the premise that what fixed that crisis will similarly work this time around just because it did then.

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    Destra's Harmony Ackee's Avatar Ackee is offline
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    Thanx
    Good to see yu still dey bout
    Last edited by Ackee; 12-03-2008 at 11:35 AM. Reason: He answered

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    Gangsta Boogie Bake n Shark's Avatar Bake n Shark is offline
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    Even the very autoworkers are in favor of the bailout...

    The United Automobile Workers union promised cuts and concessions Wednesday as part of a concerted effort with Detroit automakers to win support from Congress for a federal bailout to help the industry survive.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/04/bu.../04uaw.html?hp

    if it was such a bad thing that would cost so many jobs you'd think they'd be up in arms and opposed to it.

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    where de crix Oneshot's Avatar Oneshot is offline
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    Transporting Americans is and should be one of the most important functions our government must address. And because we are facing a massive economic, energy and environmental crisis, the new president and Congress must do what Franklin Roosevelt did when he was faced with a crisis (and ordered the auto industry to stop building cars and instead build tanks and planes): The Big 3 are, from this point forward, to build only cars that are not primarily dependent on oil and, more importantly to build trains, buses, subways and light rail (a corresponding public works project across the country will build the rail lines and tracks). This will not only save jobs, but create millions of new ones.
    LaRoche has been making the same point for ages. Even if GM et al were to produce subways and trains, would they will be produced cheaper than a factory in Mexico, or what is to stop Toyota from entering that market. Those companies are broken. They need to enter administration and the assets be bought by a new company with a clean bill of health, and no stringent union contracts. The only problem is guaranteeing the pensioners some form of payment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bake n Shark View Post
    When the national railway industry collapsed the government established Amtrak... which has been run by the government ever since... it hasn't been returned to private hands unlike what he states. Rail travel failed precisely because of the boom in automobiles, there was too much competition and too little interest in rail travel. The parallels with the current crisis is false, as is the premise that what fixed that crisis will similarly work this time around just because it did then.
    True, rail travel will only become interesting when it becomes more affordable or cheaper, and that will take massive amounts of investment, from who.. I guess some people love more taxes.

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    Registered User marabunta is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bake n Shark View Post
    ... but he should really leave the heavy lifting on the economy to people with some actually brain power.
    Like Who?

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    Registered User marabunta is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bake n Shark View Post
    Folks with brain power are the ones with actual training in finance and economics.
    CANNOT SAVE Parasitic Capitalism from IT'S FINAL CRASH DIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    where de crix Oneshot's Avatar Oneshot is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by marabunta View Post
    CANNOT SAVE Parasitic Capitalism from IT'S FINAL CRASH DIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    parasites always survive

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