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Ear to the Ground

Blurring the Line Between Business and Government

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Posted on Mar 31, 2009
auto industry
fordnewsblog.wordpress.com

President Obama grabbed the proverbial steering wheel on Monday, shaking up the American auto industry by stating tougher conditions for receiving federal subsidies and forcing GM’s CEO to step down. But critics are wrong to suggest that this represents an unprecedented use of executive power.

Los Angeles Times:

The notion that it was the president, not car company executives, who would pick such a course drew immediate criticism, especially from conservatives.

“When did the president become an expert in strategic corporate management?” said Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee. “The federal government is famous for its mismanagement, yet this administration continues to demonstrate its certainty that Washington always knows best.”

Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, called it a “power grab” that “should send a chill through those who believe in free enterprise.”

And Rush Limbaugh declared in his daily radio broadcast, “There’s always been a line, ladies and gentlemen, over which no president would cross with respect to the distinction between the public and private sectors. Obama has now crossed that line where there is no limit to government’s destruction of private activity or control over it.”

Rep. Jane Harman (D-Venice) defended the administration, suggesting that Detroit had had its chance. “My feeling is that we were too tolerant for too long and this is the tough medicine the taxpayer wants. And we have to reinvent our auto industry, or it will die.”

Other Obama defenders pointed to historic precedents for intervening in the auto industry.

Obama’s actions are “consistent with the pattern of presidents acting during economic crises,” said Allan Lichtman, a professor at American University and an expert on the presidency. “And it’s absolutely consistent with patterns of presidents intervening to make sure major components of the economy don’t fail.”

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By Conference Venues, March 16, 2011 at 10:08 pm Link to this comment

What is wrong with having a president speak on behalf of the country’s biggest automobile manufacturer? GM is a national icon and its fallout serves to remind the American public that not all that there is will be - Obama’s administration is about ‘change’ and having a president stand up for a fallen icon is to show solidarity with what’s left in the country.

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By Dave Schwab, April 3, 2009 at 5:05 am Link to this comment

“When did the president become an expert in strategic corporate management?” said Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee. “The federal government is famous for its mismanagement, yet this administration continues to demonstrate its certainty that Washington always knows best.”

Rep. Price added, “The Republican party is famous for its mismanagement, yet every Republican administration has continually demonstrated its certainty that Washington always knows best.”

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By jackpine savage, March 31, 2009 at 8:40 pm Link to this comment

Ok, “Truth"dig.  Let’s talk about your image for this wire story.

Ford has not taken a red cent of government money; the most that they’ve asked for is a guaranteed line of credit in the event of no economic turnaround…and to my knowledge have not been granted that line of credit.

So maybe the site should not cast aspersions on the good name of the only US auto manufacturer in good standing and taking care of itself.  With, i might add, a successful debt restructuring recently.

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By Paracelsus, March 31, 2009 at 3:08 pm Link to this comment

Of course Rush Limbaugh would support the bankers over the real economy. As to the firing, that’s what happens when the US government is a major shareholder. Maybe we can cut down on the bookkeepers, and finance people at GM, and hire more production engineers. But O’Bummer has too many Wall Street types on staff to do that. I fear they’ll liquidate the whole thing at GM. Making cars is not green enough for O’Bummer.

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By cyrena, March 31, 2009 at 1:50 pm Link to this comment

“..And Rush Limbaugh declared in his daily radio broadcast, “There’s always been a line, ladies and gentlemen, over which no president would cross with respect to the distinction between the public and private sectors. Obama has now crossed that line where there is no limit to government’s destruction of private activity or control over it.”

~*~*

The comment from Rush Limbaugh nearly knocked me right off of my chair, (which would have made it easier to reach my jaw that had already dropped.)

“The ‘line’ between the public and private sector was crossed eons ago…lets start with Regan’s treatment of the PATCO strike.

And over the last 40 years, the Corporations have BECOME the government. Since Dick Bush, the line has been completely erased (until now that we have a real president). In other words, under the republican dictatorship, (Clinton helped too)the government and the private sector have become one and the same, and public sector has totally evaporated, thanks to the republican privatization of any and everything. For proof, take a drive up the California Coast, and all you’ll see are PRIVATE beaches marked ‘no trespassing’. Now how exactly does one go about privatizing the whole flippin Pacific Ocean?

Only in America under republican dictatorships.


Meantime, Rush must be pumping his oxycontin through all of his orifices at this point. He’s probably got permanent IV’s attached to him, and his blood much be pure drugs, which would explain his insanity.

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By mill, March 31, 2009 at 1:17 pm Link to this comment

Apparently the board of directors for GM could not figure out that Wagoner, the guy who lost them 82 BILLION dollars in the last 8 years, is not the man to turn things around.

Thank goodness someone (our President) is adult enough to recognize a failed executive when he comes begging for more “socialist” money.

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