Bailouts -- now, about the bill

  • Article by: EDITORIAL , Washington Post
  • Updated: December 21, 2012 - 6:30 PM

The total taxpayer loss on the auto companies comes to $20.3 billion.

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jdlellis1Dec. 21, 12 6:48 PM

The vast majority of the "Fiscal Cliff" discussion have focused on tax increases demanded by the Democrats. What the Republicans have been attempting to emphasize is spending cuts deserve equal concern. Now a $20 billion addition to spending! Perhaps, just perhaps, Candidate Romney's position that GM should have gone through a normal bankruptcy had some merit. Cannot imagine why anyone with any financial and/or economic understanding would disagree. If there is one, please, enlighten me on the additional spending or the reason a traditional bailout was not a prudent path to pursue.

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goferfanzDec. 21, 12 8:46 PM

Agreed. The GM bailout was simply a gift to unions at the expense of investors. Unfortunately, this "gift" did nothing to change the longterm GM expense structure that will have this company flailing again within a few years. Even now, huge govt fleet purchases have propped up GM. Is it odd this column doesnt mention the real two architects of the AIG bailouts-->W and the Dem House, both of which have been deposed and are reviled to this day. Meanwhile, Fannie's biggest donee was just reelected to a second term,while Harry Reid long ago stopped writing budgets. Irony, huh?

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FrankLDec. 21, 1210:26 PM

GM and Chrysler should have been allowed to fail, the best pieces would have been bought up and leaner companies would have resulted. We would still have plenty of cars to choose from without having to spend a dime.

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jpcooperDec. 21, 1211:20 PM

The writer has under estimated the Government loss! The Obama Administration allowed GM to Write off $45 Billion is past loses. That little section of t he bankruptcy deal is unprecedented in bankruptcy process and law. That $45 Billion in write offs is equal to $18 Billion in Federal Tax write off. In other words GM does not have to pay its first $18 Billion in Federal tax liability! The US loss on this deal is $41 Billion!

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lizardguyDec. 22, 12 7:43 AM

Funneling tax dollars into the UNION auto industry was obama's payback for campaign contributions. More proof he bought his elections and now all of us are paying the price in many ways. Our grandchildren and great grandchildren will pay for obama's obscene spending and political paybacks.

The auto industry would be much healthier today if GM had gone bankrupt and restructured. The silly notion that we would not have xars to buy and that the parts industry would suffer were scare tactics that low information voters bought in to.

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Don9539Dec. 22, 12 8:54 AM

When first I heard Mr. Obama had saved jobs in the auto industry I assumed he had purchased a Buick. The jobs would have been there, with or without the bailouts. The total count determined by consumer demand. Over priced union jobs? Perhaps not. Too big to fail = too big to exist.

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owatonnabillDec. 22, 12 9:10 AM

Owatonnabill is admittedly fiscally challenged (he is lucky to have some people in his life who are not...), but to him this entire story smacks of gilding the lily. This whole "bankruptcy" thing, for example...we ordinary peons hear the word and immediately have this mental image of yellow tape across doors and somebody turning off the electricity. But isn't it true that there is a form of "bankruptcy" that merely allows a company to reorganize to a more profitable mode of operation? In the case of GM, whose major expense is and apparently continues to be personnel costs, wouldn't that have allowed them to completely renegotiate their stifling labor agreements? If that is true, then how does this miraculous "rescue" and being only 20 billion in the toilet accomplish anything except kicking the can down the road? Those stifling costs are still there. T'would seem to owatonnabill, that, based on this scenario, such "bailouts" are gonna be a regular part of our future. And that really doesn't sound like progress at all.

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jdlellis1Dec. 22, 12 9:22 AM

At the time of this posting, there are approximately 30 thumbs down icons. Yet, there are no financial or economic narratives accompanying those who disagree. Because of these freedoms and the capatilism, the wealth of this country has lead the globe in a myriad of economic sectors (industrial, medical, technology, etc.) and allowed us to lead the lives we lead (food, transportation, energy, etc.0 It is tragic that so many individuals have no understanding micro and macro accounting, finance, economics, etc.

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pitythetoolsDec. 22, 1210:14 AM

The US taxpayer is about to take a 12 billion dollar haircut and union workers for GM are about to get a $7000 year end bonus.

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jpcooperDec. 22, 1210:42 AM

pity "The US taxpayer is about to take a 12 billion dollar haircut and union workers for GM are about to get a $7000 year end bonus.

Pity, its not a $12B haircut. As of today the loss on the stock alone is $23B. Then we have the little "term in the agreement" that allows GM to not have to pay a penny on its first $18B in Federal taxes. Its a $41B Buzzcut!

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