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Thursday, February 22, 2024 — Houston, TX

Online comment of the week

4/4/12 7:00pm

In response to "Response to Karl Rove's remarks against Obama" (March 30, 2012):

This article accuses Karl Rove's article in the March 21 issue of The Wall Street Journal of "hyperbole, sensationalist statements and even flat-out lies." It then uses the methods it accuses Rove of using to attack the statements Rove makes.

Does anyone really believe that General Motors would have been closed and liquidated had it gone into court-administered bankruptcy? Ownership would have been taken over by the secured creditors as the law provides, and it would have been operated under new management.

The auto bailout, the way President Barack Obama did it, was probably not just a mistake, but also a misuse of taxpayer money. Rove objected to the bailout being characterized in the film as forcing the car companies and the United Auto Workers to "work together" and to "modernize the automobile industry." Rove was right to state that the bailout money, authorized by Congress to bail out the banks, was instead used to transfer partial ownership of GM and majority ownership of Chrysler to the UAW, an unsecured creditor whose interest would have been wiped out in a normal bankruptcy, instead of to the secured creditors, the bondholders, who "got hosed." I do agree with this article that "the auto bailout is one of Obama's successful policies." It was successful in solidifying the votes of the UAW for the Democrats.

Rove never stated that Chrysler still owes the government $24 billion. Is $14 billion any better? However, this is the second time that Chrysler needed a government bailout. Did we just save it so that Fiat did not have to build a production facility in the U.S. to build cars here?

This article suggests that the reason the Obama stimulus did not achieve its goals was that it was not large enough (it was only $787 billion). In the next paragraph, it suggests that President George W. Bush's policies "cost $5.07 trillion." The actual federal deficits from 2001 to 2008 totaled $2 trillion. For the three years from 2009-2011, the deficits totaled twice as much, $4.00 trillion. You can't have it both ways. Yes, yes, I know, it's all Bush's fault that we've gone on this spending binge, but maybe Obama had a little something to do with it.

Rove's article was a political critique of the obviously political Obama campaign film "The Road We've Traveled." Rove was not entirely objective, but neither was the film, and definitely neither is this article. I hope Rice students don't take what they read as facts but are just as critical in reading this article as the author is of Rove's article.

Rice Grad

Class of '63

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