Monday, June 15, 2009

Should Conservatives Boycott GM and Chrysler?

President Obama has flaunted the intent of bankruptcy law and trampled on the rights of bondholders and dealers in his quest to save the UAW. The government will now hold 60% of GM and a significant portion of Chrysler stock. Obama has practically nationalized GM. Is it time for Conservatives and Libertarians to boycott GM and Chrysler?
The Detroit News reported:
Washington -- A pair of right-wing radio hosts says there's only one choice for conservatives angry about government involvement in the auto industry: Boycott GM.

"Nobody wants to support an Obama company," Rush Limbaugh told his audience Friday, citing a poll showing that 17 percent of Americans backed a boycott of GM.

"Every dollar spent with GM is a dollar spent against free enterprise," conservative talker Hugh Hewitt wrote online last week.

Conservatives in Congress and elsewhere have criticized the federally sponsored restructuring plan GM will seek to execute in bankruptcy court.

The plan would give the federal government a 60 percent ownership stake in the company; lawmakers such as Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., have labeled that socialism.

The popular, controversial Limbaugh didn't outright call for a boycott, but said he understood why people would want to avoid GM vehicles. "They don't want to patronize Obama. They don't want to do anything to make Obama's policies work."

A GM spokesman declined to comment Monday.


Steel Phoenix said...

Wow, a really excellent question.

I suppose the Toyota Republicans should buy a Prius, the Libertarians should boycott, the Paleocons should complain a lot about how things were better back in their day, the Neocons should wait for FOX News to tell them how to think, and the Jingoists should keep buying as long as it is American run.

Did I leave anyone out?

Anonymous said...

The existance of two government-owned auto manufacturers creates many conflicts of interest for the government that could easily result in violations of anti-trust, SEC and contract bidding laws. The US may also be in violation of international trade treaties. It also creates conflicts of interest for all UAW workers because the UAW is both stockholder and labor negotiator. Will the UAW favor GM over Ford in contract negotiations? How can they fairly represent Ford workers if they want GM to take market share from Ford? What if the governemnt overstates GM earnings so they can unload their stock at a higher price? Does anyone honestly believe that a Treasury Department headed by a proven tax cheat will be honest with GM financial statements?
The main reason for Uncle Sam owning GM and Chrysler is to maintain the power of the UAW. GM cannot survive on its own by continue to pay grossly high wages to UAW members and labor under rediculous work rules of UAW contracts. For this reason, the only ethical choice for Americans is to buy an American made car from an unsubsidized competitor. These competitors include Toyota, Honda, Nissan and other transplants because they have plants in America staffed by fairly paid American workers who are more concerned about doing a good job rather than screwing their employer.