well, the honeymoon is over (wherein I strike fear into the hearts of chicago bloggers)

Awesome blossom complaints notwithstanding, my honeymoon with Obama is sort of over. I think he’s whiffing on his first big policy position, the proposed bailout for auto makers.

I own a Nissan Altima. I like it. It’s a good car.

I did not want to invest $20k of my money in a Chevy Malibu. Don’t invest $50B of our money in GM. Bankruptcy court exists for this purpose – most notably, it would give carmakers the ability to readjust their labor contracts which are some of the sweetest deals you could ever imagine (for unions anyway). Reorganize your business model in the courts and re-emerge, I don’t know, with a chance at profitability, with a chance at making competitive vehicles.

I understand that a shitton of jobs are tied to the auto industry, but a) bankruptcy court doesn’t mean liquidiation necessarily, it means reorganization and b) it’s not like demand for cars will disappear – if one automaker did liquidate, their market share would get tossed on to remaining automakers. Am I anti-union? Not really, unions are critically important to make sure workers don’t get taken advantage of. And as some union members have said to me (not auto unions) – unions deserve the best deal they can negotiate. That’s fine – as long as you stand by that when the deal you negotiated is shortsighted enough to bring your company down. (This is sort of unfair, GM and Ford have many more problems than just labor unions, but it’s a start).

Anyway. Job losses in Detroit are one thing, but job losses in Chicago are…the thing that is going to happen between now and the end of the year, and the thing that most readers of this blog are most concerned about. (see CEOs Tell Mayor Daley They Plan Huge Layoffs In November, December). If you get laid off, ask why your company isn’t important enough, or mismanaged enough, to get government help.

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3 Responses to “well, the honeymoon is over (wherein I strike fear into the hearts of chicago bloggers)”

  1. Beau Says:

    I fear that the fate of Detroit will disrail the early Obama Admin like Gays in the Military did to the Clintons. I say let Ford and GM die, but I don’t know if that will be like dropping a bomb on Michigan.

  2. Mom in real life Says:

    Being from MI I know that state can’t take much more. It’s hanging on by it’s fingernails…….But I do see your point.

  3. Ashely Says:

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