Auto Bailout Short-Changes Taxpayers
Apparently President Obama thinks that by bailing out GM and Chrysler he helped Ford as well. Or at least he’s trying to take credit for Ford’s success, even though they denied government intrusion and made their own plan for a recovery – one that happened much quicker than GM and Chrysler, didn’t cost the taxpayers anything, and has poised the company for a much bigger comeback.
During a recent speech at a Chrysler plant, President Obama said:
“We could have just let U.S. automakers go into uncontrolled free fall. And that would have triggered a cascade of damage all across the country. If we let Chrysler and GM fail, plants like this would have shut down, then dealers and suppliers across the country would have shriveled up. Then Ford and other automakers could have failed too because they wouldn’t have had the suppliers that they needed.”
I guess with dismal job growth, continuously high unemployment rates, high gas and food prices, as well as a loss of faith in the direction of the country, pretending that he saved another company might make the President look a little better.
The fact is that Ford restructured themselves without government help and crafted what appears to be a sustainable business plan, instead of putting all their stock into one over-priced, under-performing vehicle (see the Chevy Volt).
And let’s face it; GM seems to be flirting with bankruptcy every couple of years. Chrysler was bought by a foreign company and in all honesty, taxpayers will never get all of their money back. So was it worth it in the end? How many jobs were actually saved by the auto bailouts? There’s no way to know. The companies were laying off workers at an alarming rate, then they got the bailout…could they have laid off any more employees and still been able to operate at that point? They still had to close dealerships even with the bailout, would they have come back to work sooner without the bailout?
If we look at Ford, the answer is yes.