December 21, 2013
IT’S CRONYISM ALL THE WAY DOWN: Michael Barone: Government takes General Motors loss to protect UAW cronies.
Remember how the Obama re-election campaign kept crowing that “General Motors is alive and Osama bin Laden is dead”? Well, Osama is still dead, and the government is now selling the last of its GM stock — at a loss to taxpayers of $10 billion. Who has gained? Bloomberg’s James Sherk has the answer: GM’s UAW-represented employees.
Sherk points out that the government agreed to — actually, it engineered — terms quite different from those of ordinary bankruptcies. UAW members, unlike employees of bankrupt airlines, took essentially no haircut, and there was even $1 billion for UAW employees of Delphi, to whom GM had no legal obligation. (Delphi was spun off from GM several years before).
But, hey, the UAW kicked in heavily to the Obama campaign and to Democratic campaigns generally, and so they got paid off, in an episode of what I called “gangster government.” Or in the style of Chicago politics.
That’s who they are, that’s what they do.