For the 2nd time, Mitch Albom hits the nail on the head!
Hey, you senators: Thanks for nothing
By MITCH ALBOM ē FREE PRESS COLUMNIST ē December 13, 2008
Do you want to watch us drown? Is that it? Do want to see the last gurgle of economic air spit from our lips? If so, senators, know this: Youíll go down with us. America isnít America without an auto industry. You can argue whether $14 billion would have saved it, but you surely tried to kill it.
We have grease on our hands.
You have blood.
Kill the car, kill the country. History will show that when America was on its knees, a handful of lawmakers tried to cut off its feet. And blame the workers. How suddenly did the workers ó a small percentage of a carís cost ó become justification for crushing an industry?
And when did Detroit become the symbol of economic dysfunction? Are you kidding? Have you looked in the mirror lately, Washington?
In a world where banks hemorrhaged trillions in a high-priced gamble called credit derivative swaps that YOU failed to regulate, how on earth do WE need to be punished? In a bailout era where you shoveled billions, with no demands, to banks and financial firms, why do WE need to be schooled on how to run a business?
Who is more dysfunctional in business than YOU? Who blows more money? Who wastes more trillions on favors, payback and pork?
At least in the auto industry, if folks donít like what you make, they donít have to buy it. In government, even your worst mistakes, we have to live with.
And now Detroit should die with this?
In bed with the foreign automakers
Kill the car, kill the country. Sen. Richard Shelby, Sen. Bob Corker, Sen. Mitch McConnell, your names will not be forgotten. Itís amazing how you pretend to speak for America when you are only watching out for your political party, which would love to cripple unions, and your states, which house foreign auto plants.
Corker, youíve got Nissan there and Volkswagen coming. Shelby, youíve got Hyundai, Honda, Mercedes-Benz and ó like McConnell ó Toyota. Oh, donít kid yourself. They didnít come because you earned their business, a subject on which you enjoy lecturing the Detroit Three. No, they came because you threw billions in state tax breaks to lure them.
And now you want those foreign companies, which you lured, and which get help from their governments, to dictate to American workers how much they should be paid? Tell you what. Youíre so fond of the foreign model, why donít you do what Japanese ministers do when they screw up the countryís finances?
They cut their salaries.
Or they resign in shame.
When was the last time a U.S. senator resigned over a failed policy?
Yet you want to fire Rick Wagoner?
Who are you people?
More money for the lords of Wall Street
There ought to be a law ó against the hypocrisy our government has demonstrated. The speed with which wheelbarrows of money were dumped on Wall Street versus the slow noose hung on the auto companiesí necks is reprehensible. Some of those same banks we bailed out are now saying they wonít extend credit to auto dealers. Wasnít that why we gave them the money? To loosen credit?
Whereís your tight grip on those funds, senators? Whereís your micromanaging of the wages in banking? Or do you just enjoy having your hands around blue-collared throats?
No matter what the president does, history will not forget this: At our nationís most uncertain hour, you senators stood ready to plunge hundreds of thousands of American families into oblivion. Leave them unemployed, with no health care, on public assistance. And you were willing to put our nationís security at risk ó by squashing the manufacturing base we must have in times of war.
And why? So you could stand on some phony principle? Crush a union? Play to your base? How is our nation better off today now that you kept $14 billion in the treasury? Are you going to balance the budget with that?
Donít make us laugh.
Kill the car, kill the country. You tried to slam a stake into our chest; you donít realize how close you are to the nationís heart. Shame on your pettiness. Shame on your hypocrisy. This is how lawmakers behave two weeks before Christmas? Honestly. What has become of this country?
Source Article: Detroit Free Press Columnist Mitch Albom