President Barack Obama said Monday that neither General Motors nor Chrysler has proposed sweeping enough changes to justify further large federal bailouts, and demanded "painful concessions" from creditors, unions and others as their price for survival.Obama's proposal is not exactly a denial of more bailout money, packed as it is with working capital for GM, potential loans for Chrysler, and impending tax breaks, incentives, and warranty takeovers for everyone else. It's more of a bargaining position. But at least it's a better bargaining position than Bush's was**.
Obama also raised the possibility of a controlled bankruptcy to help either or both "restructure quickly and emerge stronger" —uttering the term that industry and union officials have warned repeatedly could lead to the collapse of an entire domestic industry.
"...we cannot make the survival of our auto industry dependent on an unending flow of tax dollars*."
I was completely wrong on this one; I did not expect Obama to so publicly reject the plans. And I'll give the guy his props for being willing to say what needs to be said - bankruptcy - whether the company or the union likes it or not.
That said, those props will be held in abeyance until the flow of tax dollars actually ends. Whoever said talk is cheap never lived in Washington.
* he added, blatantly ignoring the fact that it already is.
** "Are you sure you don't need more money?"