General Motors recalled another 718,000 of its vehicles yesterday to correct defects serious enough to require the action. This puts the number at "nearly 30 million vehicles since the start of the year, by far a record for any automaker and more than half the vehicles recalled by the industry as a whole."
Many of those 30 million were built buy the “old GM,” which the taxpayers bailed out in a unique bit of economic jury rigging that Vice President Joe Biden once liked to celebrate with a clever couplet: “Bin Laden is dead and GM is alive.”
The vehicles recalled yesterday were built by “new GM,” the one that emerged after the administration had turned bankruptcy on its head and stiffed the bondholders and others to whom GM owed money in favor of the unions. The new company, however, is still building cars that have to be recalled. Same as the old GM. What is called the “corporate culture” did not change. So perhaps this new company will, eventually, mismanage itself into ruin, just like the old one.
That would be the GM that the government rescued without, evidently, learning that the company was carrying a heavy liability in the form of several million defective cars that needed to be recalled, as well as the lawsuits that would be coming from victims of crashes that were caused by those defects.
The company had, of course, concealed this problem, first from its customers, then, from the taxpayers who were out $10 billion.
This fall, voters will get another chance to register their opinion on Obamacare. President Obama’s signature legislation is causing health costs to spike, federal spending to soar, doctors to leave their profession, millions of Americans to lose their health plans, and millions more to be coerced into buying overpriced insurance against their will.
Most Americans don’t think it’s their job to bail out insurance companies who lose money under Obamacare, but that’s exactly what’s poised to happen. Obamacare’s risk-corridor program — which President Obama has been using as a slush fund to placate his insurance allies and keep them quiet about his lawlessness — shifts financial risk from insurers to taxpayers. According to the House Oversight Committee, health insurers expect Obamacare’s risk corridors to net them nearly $1 billion, at taxpayer expense, this year alone.
It has been days now (at least two of them) since General Motors has issued a recall on any of its cars. But then, the law of diminishing returns applies here. After the first 15 million, there aren’t that many GM vehicles left out there for recalling.
The bailout of GM – at a final cost to the Treasury of $10 billion and change – was a landmark event in evolution state capitalism, American-style. The company was saved, certain creditors were stiffed, the unions were protected, and the corporate culture, it seems, was not altered in any fundamental way.
The city that President Obama was credited with “saving” – before it turned out that he hadn’t – is getting a little help from Washington as it struggles through the largest municipal bankruptcy in American history.
Michigan officials and President Barack Obama'sAdministration are discussing a plan to free up $100 million in federal money to aid Detroit's retired city workers, the Detroit Free Press reported on Tuesday.
The script is familiar. General Motors’ top executive heading down to Washington to be grilled by Congress. As Joseph B. White of Market Watch reports, fifty years after the Corvair controversy that made Ralph Nader a household name:
Obamacare is like an onion: The more layers you peel back, the worse it smells. The latest revelation about this horrible law is the presence of a “risk corridor,” a euphemism for an insurance industry bailout that will occur sometime in the next year.
Robert Laszewski—a prominent consultant to health insurance companies—recently wrote in a remarkably candid blog post that, while Obamacare is almost certain to cause insurance costs to skyrocket even higher than it already has, “insurers won’t be losing a lot of sleep over it.” How can this be? Because insurance companies won’t bear the cost of their own losses—at least not more than about a quarter of them. The other three-quarters will be borne by American taxpayers.
Detroit failed after years of one-party rule (guess which one), mismanagement, and corruption. Businesses closed down. Buildings were left derelict until they were torched for the fun of it. Feral animals roamed the streets as the people fled. After the usual protestations that it would never happen, city officials were compelled to declare the largest municipal bankruptcy in the nation's history.
On the floor of the Senate today, Harry Reid, a Democrat, praised President Obama's auto bailout:
"As a matter of fact, Mr. President, the figures are really staggering," said Reid. "500,000 manufacturing jobs have been added, 1 million jobs have been saved due to the president's auto rescue program. So that's a fairly significant change."
The legislation to help those affected by Hurricane Sandy has been turned into something of a mini auto bailout, according to those familiar with the Obama administration's request. The request includes millions of dollars worth of cars, to be paid for by the federal government.
Obama's request, as detailed in a letter sent to Capitol Hill by the director of the White House's Office of Management and Budget, Jeffrey Zients, includes these requests: