Ours Is a Country of Mixed Messages
We read about $700 billion being allocated here and $25 billion being approved there, and we can hardly imagine what such sums of money even look like, let alone buy. Where does our federal government get that money being promised to various businesses and financial institutions? Does it simply tell the U.S. Treasury to print it up by such-and-such date? Does it notify the IRS that it had better collect outstanding taxes and deposit those funds into the federal banking system? And in practical, everyday terms, how do such transactions—the writing and signing of the checks, the invoices created and transmitted—take place?
If the three U.S. automobile companies—General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler—are successful in convincing Congress that they too deserve a bailout, why should American taxpayers, half of whom won’t even buy their cars, be bailing them out? Maybe European countries and car dealers, who do seem to be buying their cars, should do the honors.
And if those industries get an okay from the House and Senate committees to whom they will make their case, who is going to represent them in front of the entire U.S. House and Senate—bodies that must actually agree with the committees and either pass a new bill or amend an old one? Which congresspersons and senators will argue for an auto industry bailout? What’s in it for them—free cars? No, that would be an illegal bribe. Will they get angry letters from their constituents and see letters to the editor in their local newspapers? Probably. Then what is the incentive to sponsor such legislation? Who will make the argument to try and convince the American people that it would be in their best interests to prop up the U.S. auto industry, lest we lose that manufacturing sector entirely?