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By: DAVID FREDDOSO
Online Opinion Editor
October 12, 2010

General Motors is really back. I mean, in the Washington sense.

In July, the 60 percent government-owned company began doling out campaign cash from its political action committee once again, to put some weight behind the $11.3 million it has spent lobbying Congress since it received its first government help in late 2008.

All of this is being paid for by your tax dollars, thanks to the bailout recounted in the book "Overhaul" by former Car Czar Steve Rattner. "Overhaul" is a sober account of the auto bailout by someone who firmly believes he did the right thing. It is also an eye-opening and infuriating story about government saving horribly run companies that did not deserve it.

If you want to get angry, just read a few selected sentences from Rattner's book about General Motors, its business practices, its union and its CEO, Rick Wagoner:

"The GM team seemed placidly to take for granted that somehow, some way, the government would agree to its requests."
"There was absolutely no justification for the increase in market share that GM had assumed as part of its viability report ... GM seemed to be living in a fantasy that, despite the evidence of decades of decline, it was still the greatest carmaker on earth, in a class by itself.
"The overall concept seemed to be to trim only what was easily achieved and absolutely necessary, and use taxpayer dollars to ride out the recession."
"Laid-off workers received 95 percent of their normal pay."
"Under the UAW contract, auto-workers got paid nearly the same whether they built cars or not. [GM, Ford and Chrysler] actually maintained 'rubber rooms' where idled workers could job-hunt, watch TV, and work crossword puzzles while they collected pay."
[Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn] had approached Rick Wagoner as early as June 2006 about taking a 20 percent stake in GM, but Wagoner persuaded his board to rebuff the deal, in part to save his own job as CEO."
"Our task force would later learn that, on Wagoner's instructions, GM was making no contingency plans, no preparations whatsoever for a possible bankruptcy filing. ... This attitude would add materially to the cost of the eventual rescue."
Inability to accept reality. Self-serving leadership. Confounding acquiescence to unreasonable union demands. Through the Chrysler and GM bailouts, taxpayers rewarded these practices.



http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/o...t-Motors-1194902-104811794.html#ixzz12GPbMWMI
 

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Government Motor's market share (counting fleet) is nearing 18%, yet for the 82% of American taxpayers who do not wish to buy the company's vehicles, they still had to pay to save this company. It makes more sense to make the 18% responsible for the bailout.
 

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LOL. I bought the book yesterday in LGA on my way back home and "ate" half of it flying.

I would say that decent doesn't begin to describe how entertaining this book is. No wonder, Rattner spent about a decade as a New York Times reporter. The guy writes . . . .

I have been marking some interesting quotes. I plan to share them when I am done.
 
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