My husband asked me the other day what I thought about the government bailing out the auto makers. I know he asks me things like this with a little bit of hesitation. If I have an opinion on things like this, I don't hold back, especially when asked, and the venom that can come spewing from my mouth is often ladled with trucker like language.
Basically, my response is: why should the government bail out these idiots or even the bankers? What about the rest of us during this economy? While I am thankful our income and job situations have not currently been directly affected by what is happening (though I do admit to wincing, squinting and using overall bad language when I get my 401(k) and college savings statements), I realize nothing - job, income, bank savings - are ever 100% secure at any moment in time and our situation could change unexpectedly. And I doubt the government will be there to bail me out. Or provide ANY assistance at all.
Why the US auto industry should be bailed out is beyond me. Instead of the government coming to their rescue, why don't they try to make cars that compete with the "foreign" cars in quality, gas mileage, impact on the environment, and appearance. Maybe holding the auto makers accountable for their low quality work and bad management decisions is the best thing. Kind of a Love and Logic approach. There are consequences for bad behavior and bad decision making. I should say, my husband and I do own one American made vehicle - a mini van. And we have been happy with it. It's our 2nd American made vehicle over the years. But we tend to support the German auto makers with a BMW and a Volkswagon and find them to be less maintenance. I don't see that changing anytime in the future.
A friend of mine received an e-mail outlining if the government used that 700 billion dollars for the bank buyouts and instead split it between all Americans aged 18 and older, we would each get $400,000. With that, imagine how much would then go back into the economy? People would pay off or buy houses, pay off college loans, go to college, buy cars, furniture and more, go on vacation, redecorate and on and on. Some of us might even drink more. And the druggies may buy more crack, but that's the only downfall I can see. Imagine the jobs that would be created. And oh. The government would of course tax that $400,000 income and automatically get 30% of it right back, immediately bringing down the "loan". And let those bankers who made bad decisions fix their own problems. It goes back to that Love and Logic approach.
As for the government owning a portion of these industries, it makes me think a little of communism. What will they have some "ownership" in next. While I am very happy with our president-elect, I am concerned that a governement who has poorly managed a budget, the deficit and more over the years is now in the business of banking and possibly the auto industry.
Whew. And all of this sounds much calmer when written instead of spoken. In general, during my tirades, my face is read, I break into a sweat, I foam at the mouth. Thankfully, none of you had to witness this. At the end of my ranting, I simply asked my husband "does that answer your question?" His response was something along the lines of "yep, I think that covers it."