Seventeen point four BILLION! So, our president, in his infinite wisdom has agreed to an emergency LOAN (hack, hack, cough, cough) to GM & Chrysler to bail them out. This fries my cookies. Where were the Feds when I wasn’t making any money selling tubas? Jeez, two hundred grand would have been plenty for me. I was buying a Christmas tree last Saturday and this topic came up. The guy was blaming the Auto Union. He said, “These guys are making $78 an hour. THEY (the union) sunk the automobile industry.” Whoa! My lawyer charges me $450 an hour. A shrink will cost you $300 a session. Hell, a decent massage will cost you a hundred bucks. Let’s say he’s right and most autoworkers will make $78 an hour. This totals about $162K a year. Figure a 30% tax bracket. This brings this down the yearly salary to $113K. If the average home in the US were about $250K the payments would be $2,500 a month, that’s ABOUT 25% of the monthly income. Right about where it SHOULD be for a decent standard of living. Even if he (the tree guy) WAS right, what about the guys with the seven- and EIGHT-figure salaries? Aren’t THEY the individuals who decide on what to build? Aren’t THEY the ones who decide what the American car buyer wants? Aren’t THEY the ones who design the autos? Aren’t THEY responsible for marketing? Unfortunately, the tree guy isn’t alone. My Dad (a STAUNCH Republican) feels exactly the same. I would guess many (if not all) Republicans would feel the same, or find the Union Men (AND WOMEN) to blame. Hey, how about building a car I would buy? My wife’s last FOUR cars were not American cars. The last American car I bought was in 1984 and had it for 3 years. Since then, I’ll buy well-crafted, German engineering, thank you. Except for my brother’s Vette, his family has been buying Nissans since they were Datsuns. Except for a few Saturns, I don’t know if anyone I know owns an American car. I see a lot of Japanese cars and a few Volvos. I have no faith in the American Automobile industry and it has NOTHING to do with the men & women who actually BUILD the vehicles. It’s the pencil pushers and the bean counters.
So, Mister President, when is this loan due and what interest are they paying? How come you can give them $17.4 BILLION, and I haven’t gotten my “Economic Stimulus” check yet.