“No Man’s life liberty or property is safe while the legislature is in session”.

- attributed to NY State Judge Gideon Tucker

Monday, September 13, 2010

Rattner On Wonderboy's GM & UAW Bailout

This weekend's edition of the Wall Street Journal contained an abstract of Wonderboy's 'car czar, Steve Rattner's, new book about the bailout of GM and the rape of US bondholders.

I won't bother supplying the book's title, for reasons I'll explain shortly.

Though the Journal article is a full two pages, I could only stomach about half of it. Rattner nearly breaks his arm patting himself and other administration flunkies, Rahm Emanuel and Wonderboy on their collective backs for their needless and mistaken "overhaul" of this sector.

What was really nauseating for me was Rattner's presumption that the federal government could and should have been meddling in industrial policy and the choosing of winners and losers in the GM and Chrsyler debacles.

On the way through, Rattner selectively quotes people like Wonderboy and Emanuel to the effect that they really, really thought about letting GM and the UAW founder and lose their investments or assets. Of course, we don't know if the quotes are true, and the article notes that Emanuel's representative has actually denied them.

But the overall picture painted of Wonderboy's transition team auto follies both sickens and scares me. Rattner admits that his boss' own selectively-enforced ethics rules prevented the auto team from actually hiring anyone with significant, relevant auto sector experience. Still, they plunged ahead, violating standing contracts of bondholders and arbitrarily rewarding UAW members with other peoples' assets.

This is one book I won't ever be buying. I'd rather not enrich Rattner in that manner. However, the excerpt alone is enough to justify being scared of every economic move this deeply flawed and inept administration makes.

No comments: