the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Corruption

Posted by Jeff Id on September 29, 2010

Well GM, a company now owned primarily by the US federal government, a company which received billions in bailout money which ended up being payoffs to democratic party supporting unions, has now decided to invest back in the politicians which supported them. From here:

WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)–General Motors Co. has begun to once again contribute to political campaigns, lifting a self-imposed ban on political spending put in place during the auto maker’s bankruptcy restructuring last year.

The Detroit auto maker gave $90,500 to candidates running in the current election cycle, Federal Election Commission records show. The beneficiaries include midwestern lawmakers, mostly Democrats, who have traditionally supported the industry’s legislative agenda on Capitol Hill, including Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D., Mich.), Sen. Sherrod Brown (D., Ohio) and Rep. John Dingell (D., Mich.). The list also includes Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor, the House Republican Whip, who would likely assume a top leadership post if Republicans win control of the House in November.

Seriously, our current government is more corrupt than anything we’ve seen in our short history.  The politicians vote to take our money as tax, use our money to pay off and take over one of the biggest companies in the world, and then receive money back in their own pockets.  This is not a normal US business any more folks, this is a government owned business.  How stupid are we to continue to elect these criminals.

No chance I’ll ever by a GM car again.

27 Responses to “Corruption”

  1. Steve Fitzpatrick said

    Actually Jeff, buying one of the final GM cars (and mothballing it) may be a smart investment. I figure the company is toast withing 2 years if Congress is no longer under the ‘right control’. If GM is gone, their last model year cars copuld become very valuable…. think Edsel.

  2. M. Simon said

    Jeff,

    You are an engineer so I’m going to assume you are a libertarian (the odds on favorite of engineers – anecdote: I was buying a computer earlier this year and mentioned that fact and both the salesman and the customer I was talking with agreed).

    So we have two socialist parties.

    The Economic Socialists and the Cultural Socialists. The “leave us alone” party is not well represented.

  3. Jeff Id said

    I would say libertarian most represents my views. And I absolutely agree on the ‘leave us alone’. I don’t want republicans helping make personal decisions and I don’t want democrats making monetary ones.

  4. max said

    I dunno Jeff, the Taft era government was pretty corrupt, the difference is that the Taft era government didn’t have anywhere near the power of the current one. In terms of absolute corruption, yes this does seem to be the most corrupt the United States has managed, but in terms of percentage of government which is corrupt this isn’t even in the top 5. I don’t think absolute corruption is the appropriate metric considering the number of opportunities to be corrupt available to modern US federal governments which weren’t there for earlier governments.

  5. max said

    example of the expanded opportunity for corruption:

    no previous government has owned a major automobile company

  6. Kan said

    GM is peanuts compared to the Fannie-Freddie dance duo. And look where that is getting us.

    You will own a GM car, whether you like it or not.

  7. Brian H said

    Either owning and running GM will educate the unions about real economics, or GM fails, notwithstanding gubmint bailouts.

  8. Troels Halken said

    That’s not really good. But compared to when the vice president was the former CEO of Halliburton, and started a few wars so contracts for twenty billions or more came their way, I’d say it is an improvement. And the taxpayers footed the bill. Or a ministry of finance run by former wall street guys, or the FDA filled with Monsanto guys. Or, or…

    In a democracy companies does not have a vote and for good reason. In the US it looks like the two are intertwined too much.

    Just my 5c.

  9. Frank K. said

    Troels Halken said
    September 30, 2010 at 6:10 am

    Troels…where did you get such nonsense? You must be reading too many left-wing European newspapers…

  10. Andrew said

    4-Taft was a progressive, he was picked by Teddy Roosevelt, Mr Progressive, to succeed him, and one of Teddy’s biggest problems with Taft was that he used Teddy’s anti-trust laws to go after Teddy’s “good trusts”. Taft was even more liberal than Roosevelt was.

    Now the Coolidge Administration is what to compare to. Harding was totally out of it and died, but even after his corrupt administration, Coolidge had no such issues.

    The only issue with the Hoover and Coolidge administrations was isolationist foreign policy and protectionist trade policy, and the fact that Hoover did actually try to “stimulate” us out of the Depression that his Tariffs exacerbated, State tax policies amplified, and the Federal Reserve started.

    Speaking of General Motors, Cadillac is sponsoring a Chinese Communist Party propaganda biopic about “The Great Achievement of the Founding of The Party”. Lovely.

  11. Troels Halken said

    Frank K,

    Indeed, that must be the reason ;-)

  12. Brian H said

    It is interesting that much of the reason Ford was able to stay above water and avoid the bailout tentacles was that it has a state-of-the-art plant in Brazil, which runs on totally anti-union principles: cross-training, very flat communication lines, no rule by seniority or shop stewards, etc.

    Considering the nature of the Lula government there, the irony is jaw-dropping.

  13. Brian H said

    4 min video on the above: http://apps.detnews.com/apps/multimedia/player/index.php?id=1189

    “The kind of plant Ford would love to build in the U.S., if only the UAW … would allow it.”

  14. Brian H said

    Corr: 3-min. video. ;)

  15. GregO said

    Here’s and interesting link on government corruption around the world.

    http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/gov_cor-government-corruption

  16. max said

    10-

    Taft was an interesting person whether as congressman, president, governor of the Philippines or as justice of the US Supreme Court. I selected him as an example not because he was corrupt (he wasn’t) but because he happened to be president while the government was near a peak of corruption. I actually thought about picking a corrupt administration (Jackson was where I was heading instead of cool Cal), but the better parallel to to current crop of US corruption is one where the corruption is more congress & civil service connected than presidential & administration connected, as best I can tell the current administration is more clueless than corrupt.

  17. kuhnkat said

    “The politicians vote to take our money as tax, use our money to pay off and take over one of the biggest companies in the world, and then receive money back in their own pockets”

    This is only a variation of regulate and receive monies to influence the regulation. The Feds have been regulating commerce under activist Judicial rulings for how long now?? The more power the Fed takes to itself the more companies HAVE to become active in influencing legislation for self protection. It was not a large step from lobbying for protection to lobbying for advantage. The courts managed to lose the idea that the Federal gubmint must treat everyone equally leaving the door open for all this ridiculous tax advantage, sudsidies, support, help…

    I would say i agree with the Leave Us Alone, BUT, we must become involved in the politics so that others can not twist it. Then we can Leave Ourselves Alone!!!

  18. pedex said

    the merger of state and corporate power isn’t socialism it is fascism and the US has had a long term off and on love affair with it

  19. pedex said

    oh ya while I am here, what is going on with GM is but the tip of a very large iceberg

    wanna really get enraged about the corruption? then look into the banks, AIG, and the GSE’s like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae……..they make GM look like chump change

  20. BarryW said

    Well, at least, Chavez is up front about his socialism.

  21. Brian H said

    Pedex;
    a distinction without a difference. Fascism differs only in using overt nationalism and having a more honestly oligarchic Head Orifice.

  22. pedex said

    Brian H

    no it makes a big difference

    under socialism losses and gains are shared by all, under fascism losses/damages are paid by the citizens while profits get siphoned off by a handful because business can exert enough power over govt to make it happen

    corporate law requires profit be pursued over all else, using govt to get more profit is all part of the game and controlling govt makes it easier

  23. Brian H said

    Pedex;
    BS. Name a socialist country where the governing Uber-socialists suffer the slightest deprivation. Au contraire, they live VERY high on the hog thru thick and thin.

  24. crosspatch said

    What I find absolutely gobsmacking is when our President says that maintaining the current tax structure will “cost” the government hundreds of billions. No, allowing the taxes to rise will cost US hundreds of billions of dollars. The government acts as if all the money in the country belongs to it and if we should keep a little more than they want us to, it is costing IT money.

    This is the sort of backwards thinking we absolutely have to get rid of. It isn’t the government’s money, it is OUR money. Increasing taxes doesn’t “save” the government money, it costs US money.

    Bastards, each and every ones.

  25. stan said

    The divide is clear — big unions, big business, big media and big govt vs. small business, individual taxpayers and the power of the internet. The rise of the tea party ( I prefer Lexington Green’s description — “the Insurgency”) demonstrates that the crude, clumsy overreach of Obama, Pelosi & Co has finally roused the American people to the reality.

    I am fully aware of the vast power of the establishment. But I’m betting David’s stone slays the Goliath again. Or at least knocks him back a few pegs. When it comes to corrupt govt, you never slay the beast. It operates on the self-interest of those with power against the interests of those it governs. Changing those with power only changes things temporarily. Temptation will always win. Reduce their opportunities for corruption. Create a media interested in exposing them. And change the people early and often.

    Lexington Green posts at ChicagoBoyz and recently had a story under his real name http://rightnetwork.com/posts/1001642110
    “The Insurgency is a movement of citizens directed against unsustainable government taxation and regulation, and spending, both of which benefit insiders rather than ordinary people.”

  26. kuhnkat said

    Crosspatch,

    but, they are doing it for your own good!!!

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  27. Leon Brozyna said

    No chance I’ll ever by a GM car again.

    Amen to that. I’ve been thinking along the lines of something impractical, like a Ford Mustang.

    Fox News has an interesting piece out today at:

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/10/01/science-kit-makers-battle-feds-safety-tests-paper-clips/

    As I was reading it, something jumped out at me. I’ve seen this so many times it never really registered; after all, they make it sound all so reasonable:

    Commissioners insist the regulations will not ban science kits and would be applied on a case-by-case basis.

    Good luck if you’re a businessman trying to fathom what today’s regulatory mood might be. Will some inept bureaucrat come in to work today hung over and render a ruling unfavorable to you after having ruled differently with one of your competitors? How do you plan ahead? What will be the mood next year? next month? next week? tomorrow? an hour from now? How to plan investments or plan production schedules if your fate is dependent on some third-rate twit’s ability to handle his alcohol (or control his bowel movements).

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