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Obama Says No To More Auto Industry Bailout Money

John Rich performs his new country song, "Shutting Detroit Down," which in the past two weeks is becoming a working-class anthem. Gee, I wonder why?

John Rich performs his new country song, "Shutting Detroit Down," which in the past two weeks is becoming a working-class anthem. Gee, I wonder why? Maybe the media bobbleheads can tell us where all this crazy, wacky populist rage is coming from...

Me, I'm just flabbergasted by today's news. All those things Obama's saying to Detroit, a city of working people left devastated, about sacrifice and restructuring - why isn't he saying them to Wall Street, too?

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama on Monday will reject requests for almost $22 billion in new taxpayer bailout money for General Motors Corp. and Chrysler, saying the car makers have failed to take steps to ensure their viability.

[...] A senior administration official, briefing reporters late Sunday night on the condition of anonymity in order to speak freely, said Obama will call for more sacrifice from carmakers, their investors and automotive unions.

Billionaire bankers (and their investors) walk away from the table with their pockets stuffed with taxpayer cash while members of the auto workers union are told they'll have to sacrifice even more - in this case, the Obama administration wants the companies to get rid of "old liabilities" - i.e. retiree pensions. (You know, while bankers complain about having to sell the house in the Hamptons.)

No, Obama's not talking about the insolvent banks. He's talking about Detroit. Could he make it any more obvious that the wealthy are a protected class?

"If they're not willing to make the changes and the restructurings that are necessary, then I'm not willing to have taxpayer money chase after bad money."

Funny, that's just how I feel about Citibank!

And what's all this crap about bringing the cost of wages in line with Japanese auto workers - whose government provides free health care? Why are workers the only ones expected to bear that burden? That's a right-wing meme if ever I heard one.

I'm not even arguing with the concept that deep cuts have to be made now to save the industry for later. For all I know, the union really is dragging their feet in negotiations. But how can the administration not see how it looks to the rest of the country?

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