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What we have come to...

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Denise
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0 posted 06-27-2009 10:12 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thR-lVuztIY
Balladeer
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1 posted 06-27-2009 05:48 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

There was a interesting comment below the video, Denise,,

Ayn Rand predicted this in her book "Atlas Shrugged," published in 1957. She called it "The Aristocracy of [Political] Pull".
Denise
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2 posted 06-27-2009 06:13 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Disturbing, isn't it Michael? Other than being one of seemingly hundreds of things happening that make me feel like I am no longer living in the same country that I grew up in, or even the one from a few months ago for that matter, I feel terrible for all those dealerships that lost their businesses, most of them thriving businesses at that, and for all the thousands of people who lost their jobs because of the actions of the government and GM. Many of them even purchased additional inventory at GM's request, in an effort to try to prevent GM from going bankrupt.

Why did they have to close them? They weren't part of the problem. I don't understand it at all.  
Grinch
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3 posted 06-27-2009 08:42 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
Why did they have to close them?


To cut costs.

The dealers are all franchisees Denise, that means that GM doesnít just agree to sell dealers cars at reduced rates, they agree to supply advertising, marketing materials, training facilities, IT infrastructure, sales incentives and central administration services. All that costs money, money that GM doesnít have due to the massive decline in the market share thatís occurred since the 70ís.

That wonít be the end of it though, the estimated savings put forward to explain the dealership closures I read includes a large number of savings that donít make any sense unless GM is planning to drastically reduce itís output. Less output means fewer factories, fewer car workers, less administration and reduced requirement for IT staff.

Itíll be a long slow death but the rest of the economy may have perked up enough by then for it not to be the catastrophe it could have been.

.
Balladeer
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4 posted 06-27-2009 09:50 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

GM asked dealers to take on more inventory to help save the company, which many did, and then were told weeks later their dealerships were closed...and they were stuck with the inventory. Sound right to you....?
Ron
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5 posted 06-27-2009 11:08 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

No, it doesn't sound right, Mike. Very little about a business failure, small or large, sounds right. It smacks, rather, of desperation. It sucks, big time, and no where is that more true than in Michigan.

The dealers are in no worse shape than the workers. Or the stockholders. All of them, dealers, workers, investors, every single one, knowingly and willingly crawled into bed with General Motors. I suspect most of them, for many, many years, were happy they had. They're not so happy any more, and for obviously good reasons. No one is happy.

Unfortunately, when you choose to ride a horse into battle you're taking a calculated risk. If the horse goes down, you go down with it. To expect the horse to continue to gallop when it's on its knees isn't realistic. Even if you just fed it an hour ago. Down is down, and the horse isn't any happier about it than the rider.

I did enjoy the video, by the way.

I found it very interesting when Representative Bachmann expressed her concern over both a dealership that appealed to their Senator (who happened to be a Democrat) and another that appealed to Representative Barney Frank (who also happens to be a Democrat). I share her concerns. I'm not crazy about our government investing in business, even when the alternatives seemed so much worse, but I'm terrified of the idea of government actively trying to manage a business. Not only don't I expect them to do it well, I can think of few conflicts of interest more egregious. In my opinion, no elected official has ANY business asking GM execs for so much as the time of day. It ain't right.

I also found it equally interesting, however, two minutes and nine seconds into the video, when Representative Bachmann said, "When I was on the phone today for over an hour with one of my local dealers . . . "

I sure hope Bachmann was buying a new car?  


moonbeam
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6 posted 06-28-2009 05:18 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam



quote:
but I'm terrified of the idea of government actively trying to manage a business


Amen to that.
Balladeer
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7 posted 06-28-2009 10:03 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Thanks, Ron. We agree on something!

Maybe she was trying to trade in her Hummer?
Denise
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8 posted 06-28-2009 05:03 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Maybe if they had a Democrat Representative instead of a Republican one they could have worked something out and kept their dealership, like the ones who contacted their Representatives that Congresswoman Bachmann referenced.
Grinch
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9 posted 06-28-2009 05:53 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

According to GM, so far, as part of the appeal procedure put in place by GM, 41 dealers have got a reprieve Denise. The majority of the lucky ones that have kept their franchise are owned by staunch Republican supporters who have donated to the Republican party.

If the Dems are putting pressure on GM to influence which dealerships stay open then they donít seem to be doing it along party lines. Either that or they arenít very good at this conspiracy lark.


Balladeer
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10 posted 06-28-2009 06:55 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I have to agree that Democrats are tops in the wheeling and dealing department and getting what they want. Consider the cap and trade vote in the House.

Some of the dealmaking had a distinct political feel. Rep. Alan Grayson, a first-term Democrat, won a pledge of support that $50 million from the proceeds of pollution permit sales in the bill would go to a proposed new hurricane research facility in his district in Orlando, Fla. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090626/ap_on_go_co/us_climate_bill

Now THAT'S how things get done in ObamaLand.

Be interesting to see how many bribes they come up with for the Senate vote.
Local Rebel
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11 posted 06-28-2009 06:59 PM       View Profile for Local Rebel   Email Local Rebel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Local Rebel

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_American_Streetcar_Scandal
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Aid_Highway_Act

It is a fantasy that General Motors could have ever existed without the help of the government.  Is private/public partnership inherently a bad thing?  No.  It's merely an unfortunate fantasy that there has ever been a 'free' market.

I continually find it odd that the most vocal 'shruggers' think that buying labor and products from countries that have extensive public/private interaction like China or Europe or -- anywhere but the U.S. -- is 'free' trade.
Ron
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12 posted 06-28-2009 07:09 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Now THAT'S how things get done in ObamaLand America.

Always has, likely always will.

Indeed, if there are Republicans who aren't trying to garner jobs and benefits for their constituents -- you, know the people elected them? -- they should be recalled and replaced. They're not doing their jobs. Oh, wait a minute. To a large extent, they were replaced, weren't they?

Grayson wants the hurricane research facility in his district for exactly the same reasons you and I would argue a factory should be in America, not out-sourced to Mexico. Self-interest is a good thing, Mike. I think I read that somewhere?


Balladeer
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13 posted 06-28-2009 08:25 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I agree, Ron, that self-interest IS a good thing....but to what extent? He was one of the Democrats against passage before being offered the gilded carrot. Does that make his self-interest a good thing? I doubt you would follow that same road even when you valued YOUR self-interest.

I read somewhere that the interest of congressmen was supposed to be what was best for the country...but perhaps that was just a rumor.
Denise
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14 posted 06-28-2009 09:10 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I am not surprised that 41 who received a reprieve were Republican contributors. Only five of the over 270 dealerships that were closed, I believe was about the proportion that I had read, were Democratic Party contributors. The rest were Repulican Party contributors.

Although it makes no difference in my point of view whether their representatives in Congress who got them that reprieve were Republican or Democrat, because I don't think it is the right way to do things, it would be interesting to see how it breaks down along party lines. I think it would also be interesting to find out what, if anything, was given in exchange for these reprieves.

And speaking of our fine upstanding politicians, isn't it unethical for those who are personally heavily invested financially in green energy companies, like Pelosi is, to pass laws favoring Cap and Trade?  
Ron
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15 posted 06-28-2009 09:38 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
I read somewhere that the interest of congressmen was supposed to be what was best for the country...but perhaps that was just a rumor.

A rumor, Mike? Or perhaps the same kind of propaganda that tries to promote altruism at the expense of self-interest?

The interest of every elected official should be what's good for their constituents.

Rand, of course, would be the first to point out that self-interest, or in this case constituent-interest, can't be effectively achieved without long-term vision. A good congressman isn't going to pursue short-term gain (even if that's what usually gets them elected) if it ends up hurting their constituents in the long run. Obviously, that's where "the good of the country" comes in to play. What's good for the country, ultimately, is good for everyone's constituents. You know Rand better than I do, Mike, so I know I'm not telling you anything you haven't already heard.

Is the establishment of a hurricane research facility bad for the country? If not, I think a little horse trading to get those jobs for your people is part of the job description. I suspect you would, too, if the guy doing it was a Republican.


Balladeer
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16 posted 06-29-2009 12:22 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

A good congressman isn't going to pursue short-term gain (even if that's what usually gets them elected) if it ends up hurting their constituents in the long run.

Obviously, he is not a good politician then. The cap and trade bill will be what will possibly be the largest tax increase in history. Obama is on record as stating all energy taxes will have to rise due to it. That will surely affect his constituents much more so than a hurricane research facility and I feel he knows that. That is not putting the welfare of his constituites or the country ahead of having bragging rights for bringing the facility to Florida. No, AynRand would not approve of such action any more than she would approve of grand larceny where one's profit came from robbing others.

Who will benefit? Pelosi, for one, on record as heavily investing in the alternative energy industry. Gore will probably hit billionaire status, his plans finally coming into fruition. A list of congressmen who will become rich from the bill would be interesting, although I doubt we'll see one.

The first time congressman from Florida had better enjoy his one term because because, when his constituents start seeing how much more they are paying in energy, gasoline, electricity, etc, they will remember him much more for the politician who voted for the increases moreso than the man who got money for a hurricane research center.

Of course, all that is assuming that the Senate is filled with idiots, also. Hopefully they won't be
 
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