Is to stiff the taxpayers. Not to mention the bondholders. As Todd Spangler of the Detroit Free Press reports:
The General Motors bailout may have cost the government $10 billion, but GM CEO Dan Akerson rejects any suggestion that the company should compensate for the losses.
The way the CEO – who has his job, by the way, courtesy of taxpayers – sees it, "Treasury officials took the same risk assumed by anyone who purchases stock.”
Taxpayers would do well to remember that the next time (and there will be one) that some car company or other “vital” enterprise” comes around talking bailout. “Like to help you out, old stud, but you assumed a risk, just like anyone else in business. But good luck with next year’s model line. And especially that Volt."
That $10 billion, by the way, would cover – according to some estimates – the cost of the recent economic shutdown.
Household debt jumped once again to $2.7 trillion, according to the New York Fed. "[T]he Federal Reserve Bank of New York announced that in the third quarter, non-real estate household debt jumped 2.3 percent to $2.7 trillion," reports the fed. "The increase was due to a boost in student loans ($42 billion), auto loans ($18 billion) and credit card balances ($2 billion)."
The auto bailout debate, already a triumph of narrative over reality, took another turn for the absurd last week as both presidential campaigns exchanged salvos over what amounted to a misunderstanding about Chrysler's plan to build Jeeps in China.
Former Obama administration official Steven Rattner said on MSNBC that Jennifer Granholm "must have had some medications or something in her system" when she addressed the Democratic convention last month:
Earlier today on the campaign trail, Vice President Joe Biden said, "I'd trade being vice-president in a heartbeat for having won Daytona." The comment was made to an owner of a stock car that won Daytona. Via the pool report:
The Detroit Free Press reports that “General Motors made $1 billion in the first quarter, beating analysts’ expectations before being dragged down by a special accounting-related $590-million charge in struggling Europe.”
So now they have gone and politicized the Super Bowl ads. Have they no shame?
Everyone is familiar with the Chrysler spot that has Clint Eastwood walking ominously dark streets, talking about how America is down and hurting, but we’ve been here before and this is just halftime. We will be coming back. Included in that “we” is “the Motor City,” because this is a commercial about Chrysler cars, which are built in Detroit (by a company that is mostly Italian-owned but never mind).
It seems entirely possible that the only thing keeping consumers away from the Chevy Volt is its price point. It’s basically a $41,000 Honda Civic with better mpg, a quieter ride, and an upgraded interior. So the big brains at GM have decided to address the price issue by making a more expensive version of the Volt: the Cadillac ELR.