Tune Up

Further to my automobile post below, I liked this comment from the Corner:

These are troubled financial times, but what really makes Chrysler and GM different from those automakers in the U.S. market that are not facing bankruptcy? Answer: The United Autoworkers Union.

In his announcement today that Chrysler is entering bankruptcy to resolve its debts, nothing President Obama said changed Chrysler’s fundamental labor disadvantage vs. its non-union U.S. competitors. Indeed, the UAW will now own 55 percent of Chrysler in a debt-for-equity exchange that finances the union’s health-care trust fund.

Obama mouthed the fiction that Chrysler’s troubles stem from “failing to make the fuel-efficient cars like its foreign competitors.” In fact, Chrysler’s uncompetitive labor costs long ago made it impossible for the company to manufacture anything but large SUVs and minivans at a profit.

Chrysler will also be one-tenth owned by the feds, meaning that a private, for-profit company will be majority-held by two entities whose priorities are not making cars at a profit but saving union jobs and expanding the web of regulation. Former American Motors president Gerald Meyers told WJR-Radio after Obama’s announcement that union/government ownership of an auto company amounted to “a grand social experiment.” Would it work? “No,” he answered.

Those of us who think President Obama is a pompous horse’s ass feel that way not because he’s doing things differently from the way we’d like them done, but because he’s doing the wrong things. Repeatedly, and on almost every occasion.

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