Sunday, December 21, 2008
Larwyn's Link Kerplosion: GM is a "vast retirement home with a small money-losing auto subsidiary"
• A disheartening Detroit bailout (Volokh Conspiracy): "A lot of people object that consumers won't buy a car from a company in Chapter 11. But do we seriously think that many of those consumers will be a car from a company on bailout life-support? If not--and I haven't talked to anyone who thinks it makes a difference whether they are in Chapter 11 or on life-support--then it is hard to see what this action does to fundamentally transform the prospects of the automakers. In other words, bankruptcy still looks inevitable, and it is just a matter of how many billions of taxpayer dollars we're going to throw away before we get there."
• A key plant that will build the Chevy Volt will be delayed.
• Where have all the Woodwards gone? (Nolan Chart): "Curious journalists, however, are suddenly a rare breed... Keep in mind that this is the same press that had an insatiable appetite for "guilt by association" during the Bush administration. For the better part of three years we were subject to front-page updates of the Valerie Plame affair, which was far more convoluted a tale. Out of necessity for the reader, every article had to spend several paragraphs just recapping what happened: Joe Wilson, Niger, yellow cake uranium, the Novak column, and a strange form of retribution. Just trying to keep up with the background narrative and discern the actual crime behind the allegations was enough to induce migraines... Was it Dick Cheney, in the White House, with the lead pipe? Who cared? Following along was an effort in futility..."
• Could the LA Times turn off its presses?: An excellent complement to the previous article.
• Mark Steyn: We're in the fast lane to Bailoutistan: "General Motors, like the other two geezers of the Old Three, is a vast retirement home with a small money-losing auto subsidiary. The UAW is AARP in an Edsel: It has three times as many retirees and widows as "workers" (I use the term loosely). GM has 96,000 employees but provides health benefits to a million people... How do you make that math add up? Not by selling cars: Honda and Nissan make a pretax operating profit per vehicle of around $1,600; Ford, Chrysler and GM make a loss of $500 to $1,500. That's to say, they lose money on every vehicle they sell. Like Henry Ford said, you can get it in any color as long as it's red."
• Che Guevara: 'A cold killing machine motivated by hate' (London Sun)
• Obama Names Disgraced Crackpot as 'Science Adviser' (Jammie Wearing Fool)
• The Rezko-Obama connection you don't know (Team Sarah)
• An unnerving image - the day our bridge was destroyed (Sydney Morning Herald): "In [the new movie] The Day The Earth Stood Still... alien invaders arrive on Earth to purge the planet of the one thing that is killing all life - mankind. [The movie] is a retelling of a 1951 science-fiction film which originally had Klaatu arriving to warn the people of Earth of the dangers of the escalating nuclear arms race. This time around, the story has been tweaked to reflect current global ecological and weather concerns. When he arrives, Reeves's alien warns humanity our reckless abuse of the Earth has left his watching species with no choice but to intervene before we destroy the planet and its rare ability to sustain life."
• Fausta is now writing at Real Clear World, specializing in Latin American affairs.