Perry Glasser

Buccaneer Award: Rick Wagoner!

In Business on November 11, 2008 at 11:52 am

 

buccaneer1As predicted weeks ago at this blog, General Motors is petitioning for a Weasel-dole. The reasoning is simple: if socializing the financial sector is a good thing, why not manufacturing?

 

It’s an odd kind of socialism the Weasels have brewed, too. In exchange for billions in public money, the American taxpayer gets non-voting equity and guaranteed higher taxes to be paid by the companies receiving bailout money.

 

Yes, Dollar$ knows that the Federal Weasels want to call it “dividends.” Fiver percent now and nine percent later. But Dollar$ is happy to remind readers that when corporate entities or real human beings pay money to the government, that’s called “taxation.”

 

And lest any Citizens reading this are starry-eyed enough to think that corporate taxes are paid by corporations, they need to think again. Corporate taxes are a cost of doing business, and, like the cost of raw goods, labor, and logistics, are passed along to the consumer in the final price for the goods and services.

Make it plain: if we give billions to General Motors, to make the payments, GM will have to raise the price of cars. We pay; they profit.

 

Citizens will note, by the way, that the price-tag of the bailout is already creeping up faster than Wal-Mart underwear. AIG got money; AIG needs more money. There’s a surprise. A few billion here, a few billion there—what the hell is the difference? The current Weasel Team is out by January 20, but the incoming Weasel Team looks even more inclined to hand out our money.

 

Weasels is weasels

 

As it happens, yesterday the Chief Buccaneer and CEO of GM, Rick Wagoner, refused to resign as a condition for GM getting aid. “I think our job is to make sure we have the best management team to run GM. It’s not clear to me what purpose would be served.”

 

No. That was not a joke.

 

Bear in mind, the auto industry is not in dire straits. A slowdown is a slowdown: people are not abandoning cars on the highways. With the price of gasoline going lower, the demand for less-fuel efficient (read: “cheaper’) cars will rise. Toyota and Honda are not on the brink of bankruptcy. They are building roads all over China and that huge market of people newly arriving into the middle-class will want autos. Visionary companies with visionary leadership innovate and strategize–and they somehow sell cars. They negotiate with unions. They will get through bad times; their laid-off employees will be recalled. They will meet their pension and heathcare obligations.

Wagoner would like us to think that GM is a victim of circumstance. The man’s contempt for Citizens is palpable.  His leadership the management team that has brought GM’s stock price to the same level it was at in 1946, and now he wants us to fund his ineptitude, calling himself, “the best.”

 

Those of you who endorse “buy and hold” as an investment strategy may want to contemplate GM’s price level.

 

So!

 

For chutzpah and  contempt, Rick Wagoner STEP FORWARD!

 

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