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Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Vance - Crime Editor] #469025
11/17/08 10:29 AM
11/17/08 10:29 AM
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I think it's disgraceful to blame people who have worked and saved all their lives, who have lived up to and beyond their responsibilities, for the state of the economy today.

It's not only the older generation but many young couples and families of young children have worked multiple jobs, reached out to their communities to help those in need, were there for the people in Oklahoma City, the sites of the 9/11 attacks, hurricane and flood victims along the Gulf Coast, and many others in need.

People with a healthcare crisis involving just one family member have lost their homes and savings; others who have worked their whole lives for one company have lost their jobs and pensions. Small and medium, and even large businesses know that keeping communities healthy is good for business; law enforcement officials and social service providers know that a bad economic situation causes terrible human suffering due to crimes involving theft, vandalism, domestic violence and child abuse.

AIG executives seem to believe that their 'bailout' help will be paid back and should be considered a loan that will be paid back with interest. If that's true, I will be greatly relieved. As for bailing out the U S automakers - their failure will plunge the surrounding communities into a devastating economic crisis not only from the families who will directly lose jobs but for those who work in businesses that will lose customers from those businesses; tax shortfalls will leave the most vulnerable without options and communities will deteriorate and die. When I was growing up I lived in neighborhoods that were barely recovering from big plant closures after years of rebuilding their economies, and even as a child and teenager I was struck by the psychological and emotional undertones among people who had managed to survive through the hard times. In some neighborhoods, 70% of people just packed up and left. They had to do that, moving to other cities or back home where they could live with relatives. Stable, healthy neighborhoods are necessary for strong families.

We still have two months of Republican leadership in the White House. George W. Bush and his cabinet have had eight years of experience and top level advisors during crisis situations. Hopefully they are addressing our concerns with the U.S. auto industry and can make a good start at re-establishing stability.

In the meantime, don't assume that most Americans have been living on credit and not planning for the future. Many of us have done a much better job than the government and it's their lack of foresight and planning, and slow or inadequte response to economic realities that have caused most of our difficulties.

Remember George W. Bush did win the election of 2004 and expectations were high that Republican fiscal responsibility and good accounting would lead us into greater prosperity.

Blaming the failures of major corporations on the workers who give their lives to the company doesn't make sense. Their boards and shareholders were making good profits and they should have done better.

Why are they not using their resources and ingenuity in figuring out how to compete with foreign auto makers and bringing these ideas to Congress themselves? I bet their employees could make suggestions that would rival those of expensive outside consultants, and be good for the community, too.

Pam W
SE of Seattle


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Re: Auto bailout? [Re: toddzgrrl02] #469029
11/17/08 10:47 AM
11/17/08 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted By: toddzgrrl02
So now I am hearing about the auto industries wanting help too. (maybe they should stop making gas guzzling SUVs that no one in their right mind should be buying unless they live someplace it is necessary!) but anyway, why should we bail them out too? Does this seem like a sensible way to use OUR money?

Obama seems to think so.


The question we should be asking is what George W. Bush is deciding to do; have you contacted your elected representatives and the White House with your remarks?

President-Elect Obama seems to have the same opinion as the rest of us:

From the New York Times article about the 60 Minutes interview:

Quote:
In his first post-election interview, the president-elect also reiterated his support for providing additional assistance to Americans facing home foreclosure as well as government involvement in bailing out the troubled automobile industry.

�It can�t be a blank check,� Mr. Obama said of a plan to help automakers. �My hope is that over the course of the next week, between the White House and Congress, the discussions are shaped around providing assistance but making sure that that assistance is conditioned on labor, management, suppliers, lenders, all the stakeholders coming together with a plan � what does a sustainable U.S. auto industry look like?�


Hopefully a good plan will be established before Republicans leave the White House.

Pam W

In my previous post I was responding to a different remark and individual than the 'quick reply' indicated. I am insulted to read that hard working Americans should take the blame for the economic crisis. People I know who are at risk or have lost their homes and savings were not overextended on credit or free-spending non-planners. Most either had their jobs cut out from under them, lost health insurance during a family medical crisis, or had a spouse fall ill or pass away after a long illness. Good Republicans have been caught in this economic downturn and stock market rollercoaster ride into a ditch.

Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Barbara, GayLesbianEditor] #469046
11/17/08 02:03 PM
11/17/08 02:03 PM
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Hudson Falls, New York
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Originally Posted By: Barbara - AIDS/HIV Editor
My dad and I were having this conversation recently. Not surprisingly, we disagree. I say that "the good old days" of someone getting a job at a factory and making enough money to support an upper middle class lifestyle (as has been true in much of Southeast Michigan for years) are long gone. I think we shouldn't try to close the borders or keep the jobs here but do what Americans do best .... innovate, create new industries and new jobs that will employ the people who would have been employed by manufacturing. The fact is that since all those other countries can do it so much more cheaply, things aren't going to change. Thus, it seems a better use of our time to find an alternative than to rail against it. In the interests of full disclosure: I live in Michigan and my dad was unemployed during the last auto industry crisis in the 70s. I know it's awful but I'm also pragmatic: since it isn't going to change, what can we do?


That is the real question isn't it? What can we do? It looks like we can do nothing. Congress doesn't let us vote on any of these things so we have to sit back and take it. If we were allowed to vote yay or nay to NAFTA before it was passed back in 93 and we allowed it to happen, then we could only blame ourselves. We weren't allowed to vote on the recent 800 billion dollar bailout, that's right. I said 800 billion dollar bailout and I am sure we won't be allowed to vote on the auto bailout either. Sure the bailout may save some jobs but at what cost and for how long? We are not fed all of the information on these bailouts. All of the ups and downs and are only fed what the government wants us to hear.


Vance Rowe
Crime Editor
Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Vance - Crime Editor] #469049
11/17/08 02:18 PM
11/17/08 02:18 PM
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Missouri, USA
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I am amazed that the automakers did not see this coming. NAFTA is not what caused this. How many years has the government been stating that cars have to be retooled, and are finally forcing their beliefs on the carmakers. I feel the car industry did not have an eye to the future but continued to do business as usual. Now they want us to bail them out. The unions also did not have an eye to the future. They want us to accept and be forced to buy their products, and ignore that there other products are better products out there. You give the consumer what they want.

If you are I, small businesses, were in trouble, we wouldn't be rescued. I feel it is not the auto industry being rescued, but the unions. They have crippled the auto industry. The government should step back and allow this industry to fail and start up again, running them correctly.


Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Vance - Crime Editor] #469050
11/17/08 02:21 PM
11/17/08 02:21 PM
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Missouri, USA
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I watched Meet the Press yesterday and this was the main topic of discussion. I still don't know how I feel about it, both sides made very good points.

Detroit has known for a very long time that they had to make changes. Their response to the recent $4 a gallon gas was to subsidize gas for their customers who bought huge gas guzzlers. Bad for the country, bad for the planet. Now the CEO of GM says he won't resign, no matter what. He's one of the ones responsible for running the industry into a ditch. If the big three refuse to step into the 21st century, why should the people pay to save them, they weren't trying to help themselves make the necessary changes.

On the other hand, no other country that has an auto industry, is going to let their industry go under. Where does that leave this country if we let ours go?

So I think some sort of compromise must be reached so that the industry isn't completely lost, but the ones who made the bad decisions and led the industry to this point need to be dispensed with. When the government bailed Chrysler the government made money on the loans. That doesn't sound too bad to me. So many other industries depend on the auto industry that it's a scary thought that we might lose all of it.

Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Helen Doll Making Editor] #469052
11/17/08 02:28 PM
11/17/08 02:28 PM
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Missouri, USA
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It concerns me that a member of Congress suggested that the CEOs of the auto industry should resign. Perhaps they want to nationalized the auto industry also. I don't know about you, but I won't drive around in a Smart Car or whatever they want us to drive. I won't allow my kids to drive around in those. I bet that members of Congress will still drive around in their SUVs, Limos, etc. while the American people are getting killed driving around in the cars they will "design" if they have their sticky fingers in the industry.

Re: Auto bailout? [Re: VickyH] #469070
11/17/08 04:53 PM
11/17/08 04:53 PM
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Pam - I didn't lay the blame entirely at the feet of individuals. But, as I indicated, individuals - through the choices we make - DO have an impact (along with corporations and governments - you may wish to review the whole post).

Hard working Americans DO have an impact on the economy. Our national savings rate is 1 % (yours may be better, if so I applaud you, you're outside the norm). As for debt, the average American has 9 credit cards and owes more than $16K in personal consumer debt - not including home mortgages and student loan debt (See Credit Crunch Takes New Face. No, its not pretty. No, its not complimentary. That's simply the way it is.

Businesses do have a part too. After all, they let Americans purchase their products. Then over produce hoping more Americans will buy. Then wonder what the hecks' going on when no one can buy anything (too much debt, not enough credit to buy, no cash savings to buy).

Then they lay off people because they can't affort to keep expansive operations going. Etc., etc. Then the government bails them out (God, why?).

Then the cycle keeps on going.

Just yesterday, Obama indicated he would do whatever it takes, including bailing out the auto industry, to keep things status quo (see Obama Says He Will Do Whatever It Takes On Economy). Continuing to throw taxpayers dollars at a sinking ship when there individuals basic needs aren't being taken care of (health, safety, welfare) is not good politics in progress.

Yes, I've written my elected representatives (and called them, and written letters to the editors of local papers, and have worked with local groups, etc.). What's happening now has been a work in progress since the 60's (FYI - Border states like California, Texas and New Mexico are very aware of the movement of corporations, just look at what happened in Texas after Levi Strauss moved operations to Costa Rica in 1990 - pre-NAFTA). As I said previously, and I'll repeat, it's not just NAFTA, its not just big business, its not just the Democrats/Republicans, its the culmination of a whole bunch of very bad decisions made be individuals, corporations and big government.

As for immigration, we could debate whether immigrants (undocumented or otherwise) are good or bad for the economy all aday long. The simple fact is, immigrants--even educated immigrants--will take jobs with low pay, long hours, and challenging working conditions simply to be able to work. (See the NCPA statement on Immigrants and the Jobs they Take. Perhaps its time we reconsider what it is we're willing to do to stay stable in difficult times.

Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Lynn_B] #469085
11/17/08 05:49 PM
11/17/08 05:49 PM
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Illinois
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I was pretty ticked off this morning when I heard that there is a proposal in the making to bailout Detroit/auto industry by adding a tax to our gasoline, so if it is under $3.50 a gal, whatever the difference is between the actual price of the gas and the $3.50 will go to help bail them out... if gas goes over $3.50 then we won't have to pay the tax during that time... but essentially that means that no matter what we are paying at least $3.50 a gal no matter what, and this is also going to be graduated, meaning they plan on increasing it over time.

Someone called in and pointed out that a lot of the liberals in support of this live in large cities with mass transit so this wouldn't affect them so of course they are supporting it... but the people who move product all over the country are the one's who will be suffering.

Also, for the car companies to accept this money, they have to agree to certain things as well...

I don't like it. I don't agree with it, but what can we do? We have no real say in it if they pass it.


Michelle
Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Barbara, GayLesbianEditor] #469208
11/18/08 03:26 AM
11/18/08 03:26 AM
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Nobody's vilifying Mexicans--by the way, it's more than Mexicans who arrive here from south of the border. The current system is not fair to them or our existing citizens. The current system smacks of slavery. On the other hand, the current system is enticing a large number of potential citizens, via future amnesty, who do not understand the value of rule of law. You can go back in history all you want and point to bad treatment of various groups, but bygone events can not cancel out current ones. Besides, by now, we have tons of people with such combined heritages that hardly any of us lack genetic ties to one or more of the previously vilified groups or some of the "privileged" groups. What are we going to do? Kick ourselves for what some of our ancestors did and then pat ourselves on the back for what others of our ancestors suffered?


cela
Re: Auto bailout? [Re: Barbara, GayLesbianEditor] #469376
11/18/08 05:30 PM
11/18/08 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted By: Barbara - AIDS/HIV Editor
My dad and I were having this conversation recently. Not surprisingly, we disagree. I say that "the good old days" of someone getting a job at a factory and making enough money to support an upper middle class lifestyle (as has been true in much of Southeast Michigan for years) are long gone. I think we shouldn't try to close the borders or keep the jobs here but do what Americans do best .... innovate, create new industries and new jobs that will employ the people who would have been employed by manufacturing.


I agree, except I would like to see the borders tightened up. It makes zero sense to me that we should pay a business to keep producing a product that won't sell. The auto industry needs to roll with the changes and create vehicles that will be more energy efficient, or utilize alternative energies.

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