Democrats Double Down on Auto Bailout, but Michael Moore Says Obama Didn’t Save Detroit
posted at 3:47 pm on September 7, 2012 by Matt Vespa
Bin Laden is dead and GM is alive. That was the theme that permeated the Democratic National Convention – especially during Vice President Biden’s acceptance speech last night. However, it’s a false narrative. As I’ve mentioned previously, Obama and the Democrats need to stop saying “I am GM, hear me roar” because the facts simply don’t add up. Yes, GM’s doors maybe open, but the company is drowning in debt. It’s trading in the low 20s on the Dow Jones, which is indicative that the bailout from American taxpayers hasn’t been paid back in full.
Investors Business Daily wrote back in April that:
GM… still owes more than half the $50 billion in federal funds it received when the combination of the recession and its costly union contracts drove it into bankruptcy. And its lending arm, GMAC (now Ally Financial), still owes $14.5 billion.
What’s worse, it’s not clear that GM actually repaid what it’s gotten credit for repaying. Check out this note buried in the inspector’s report: “As part of a credit agreement with Treasury, $16.4 billion in TARP funds were placed in an escrow account that GM could access only with Treasury’s permission.”
As it turns out, GM got Treasury’s OK to “repay” more than $6.7 billion “using a portion of the escrow account that had been funded with TARP funds.” So GM is merely paying the government back with government money, not money GM is earning selling cars, as the administration has claimed.
Worse, GM in effect is still borrowing money. Consider this item from the report: ‘What remained in escrow was released to GM.’ Bottom line: Taxpayers have not been paid back and are still on the hook as GM continues to require government help. Yet Obama has hailed the GM bailout as the signature achievement of his big government programs.
So, again to say that GM, and the auto bailout in general, was a smashing success is a frivolous statement. However, that didn’t stop liberals last night from repeating this blatant lie. In fact, Jennifer Granholm, former Governor of Michigan, was in rare form when she delivered a rather animated speech last night claiming:
The entire auto industry, and the lives of over 1 million hard-working Americans, teetered on the edge of collapse; and with it, the whole manufacturing sector. We looked everywhere for help. Almost nobody had the guts to help us — not the banks, not the private investors and not Bain capital. Then, in 2009, the cavalry arrived: our new president, Barack Obama!
He organized a rescue, made the tough calls and saved the American auto industry. Mitt Romney saw the same crisis and you know what he said: “Let Detroit go bankrupt.” Sure, Mitt Romney loves our lakes and trees.
First of all, Governor Granholm is mistaken. If “Detroit went bankrupt,” GM and Chrysler would have had zero problems hiring new folks for those entry-level positions, but at a reduced rate of pay – which would have been a draconian $47 an hour. Even Michael Moore, the lefty from Flint, wrote this morning in The Huffington (re)Post that Obama didn’t save Detroit.
Didn’t Obama save Detroit?
No, he didn’t. He saved General Motors and Chrysler. “Detroit” (and Flint and Pontiac and Saginaw) are not defined by the global corporations who suck our towns dry and then split town to make more money elsewhere (except, of course, they continued to design and built crap cars, so eventually they didn’t make the money at all). These cities in Michigan are about the people who live here, and in the process of “saving Detroit,” Mr. Obama had to fire thousands of these people, and reduce the benefits and pensions of those who were left. There’s a lot of pissed off people in Michigan (and Wisconsin and Ohio), people who weren’t saved even though the corporation was. I’m just stating a fact, and those of you who don’t live here should know this.
Granted, Moore is still in line with his liberal roots, but he at least called out Granholm and the Democratic Party on their inaccurate statement that they “saved Detroit.” They saved their union buddies.