Monday, December 08, 2008

Perhaps I'm becoming a Socialist?

I understand why Washington feels that the financial and auto industries need bail outs. The failure of either industry would be catastrophic to our economy, and would take decades to recover from. What I don't understand is how the government can pour billions of dollars of tax payer money into these industries without insisting on some huge strings and oversight on how the money is spent and how those industries are run.

The reason these industries need help is because their management failed to run their businesses in a sustainable manner, pure and simple. So, they blew all of their capital and now we're giving them more money to mismanage without sufficient oversight to ensure that the funds are used wisely. Sounds like OUR MANAGEMENT (aka the Federal government) may soon be looking for a bailout from some mythical big brother after they squander our capital and resources.

Free market proponents argue that the market should be allowed to repair itself, that business knows how to take care of itself. Well ... um ... didn't they just prove that they don't have a clue?

So, if we're going to hand industry any money there should be massive strings attached to the deal. Minimally, the BoD's of recipient companies should have voting Federal representatives on them. Depending on the level of funding we need to infuse in these concerns, I am not adverse to a complete Federal takeover of the business. Yes, that smells like 'nationalization'. Yes, that smells like Socialism.

If Nanny is going to put a bandaid on your knees and elbows, Nanny should also make you eat your vegetables and tell you when to go to bed. If you don't want to be told when to go to bed, don't ask Nanny to fix up your scrapes.

1 comment:

changejunkie said...

Move over, you pinko -- you've got company! We should get all those strings in writing. At a minimum, this money should be in the form of LOANS, with definite payback terms. And yes, we should get input into how the companies are run, since we have bankrolled them. Think of us as a really really big shareholder. I was appalled at the financial services bailout, where we gave money to banks and HOPED they would start lending it. Why didn't we make that a condition of the bailout? When I borrow money, I get terms, spelled out in really teeny print, but spelled out, and binding. The same should apply to everyone with their hands out in this current bailout.