Saturday, December 13, 2008
Have We No Pride?
The news stories coming out of Washington this week bespeak a terrible arrogance on the part of those that have been elected to represent us.
There has been a great deal of talk about the Big Three automakers and the failure of their business plans. Like they have for many of the business failures lately, those inside the beltway are eager to lay the blame for the failure soley at the feet of capitalism, as if the automobile industry had been operating in the free-market. Their response is that government must "do something" and right away, too, in order to save Detroit.
Sorry, pols, but I think Detroit is already too far gone, and I think government had something to do with it. As did the union bosses, whose main interest is maintaining power, not taking care of the "little guy."
Undoubtedly, bad business decisions also contributed.
It's damn hard to make a business plan at all, let alone a good one, when your faction has lost influence in Washington, and the regulations and pull-peddling go against you.
The thread that runs through this whole sad story is one of arrogance. Arrogance, but not pride.
It was disgusting to watch the likes of Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reed lording it over the auto executives in the weeks prior to Thanksgiving, as they came hat in hand for their share of the bail-out. There was plenty of arrogance to go around. It was displayed by the union bosses and the political apparatchiki there to make political hay over the shame of the auto execs.
There was plenty of arrogance, but I had to wonder about the auto execs: Where was their pride?
I was waiting for one of them to stride into the hearings like a reincarnation of Howard Hughes to tell the Pols exactly where to shove it.
I was sorely disappointed.
No one with an ounce of pride in their company and its product would have gone begging to Washington for a handout, willing to sell out to a Car Czar for the privilege of surviving to ask for another handout a few months hence.
Better to stand up and take it like a man, while filing bankruptcy proceedings in order to get out from under the insane job-destroying union-contracts and contradictory government regulations, the better to start again under Chapter 11 reorganization.
Have they no pride?
I imagine that they sold that to the pull-peddlers long ago.
Instead they humbly kowtowed to the most ridiculous grandstanding by the Clowns from Congress . . .er, excuse me, the Honorable So-And-So's.
This might be understandable, though still disgusting, if such a bail-out had a snow-ball's- chance-in-hell of saving the companies.
But we saw this week exactly why it won't. It can't.
It's the unions, stupid! (Apologies to Bill Clinton).
Or more accurately, it's the union bosses.
We saw them doing the same thing to the Senate that they have done to the automakers.
These guys don't bargain in good faith. They don't bargain at all.
Some of our senators do have some pride.
When the UAW refused to consider any concessions, the Senate said: No deal.
And this is the right response, because it will not matter how much money the Federal government takes out of our pockets to prop up these companies, if the companies cannot make cars that will sell at the prices people are prepared to pay. The companies will continue to sink into the red.
We will be sending good money after bad.
But now the President of the United States has said that he will subvert the decision of the Senate. In doing so, he is subverting the United States Constitution and Rule of Law.
He is perjuring himself as well, because he has taken an oath to protect and defend the Constitution.
This is the same offense that caused Bill Clinton to be hauled before the Senate for an impeachment trial.
Many Americans were calling for the impeachment of the president when he began the unconstitutional war in Iraq. And many more were doing so because of the unconstitutional provisions in the Patriot Act.
I have just one question: Where are those voices now?
Have we no pride?