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No Jennie, it’s bailouts that are un-American

December 28, 2008

Michigan’s governor, Jennifer Granholm said it was “un-American” for Senators to vote against approval of a bailout for Detroit’s “Big 3.”

I’ve been stewing on this for the past couple of weeks. Perhaps I just couldn’t believe that the Governor of Michigan is that clueless as to the proper role of government, or that she is stead-fast in the belief that two wrongs somehow make a right.

In essence, her vision can be ascertained by examination of three statements attributed to her in the article linked above.

“It is unacceptable for this un-American, frankly, behavior of these U.S. senators to cause this country to go from a recession into a depression.”

“It is such an unbelievable stab at workers across the country.”

“You give this big bailout to these financial institutions – don’t even ask a single question, they can do what they want – and then you lay the blame for the auto industry, which is a victim of this financial meltdown, on the backs of the people who are working on the line.”

Let’s examine her comments one at a time.

First and foremost, it is not the role of the U.S. government to provide an economic bailout to any person or business. There is no Constitutional authority for doing so. Bankruptcy is a very American thing to do for businesses that fail. A U.S. government bailout is, by definition, un-American.

Second, I too am an American worker, Ms. Granholm, and I resent very deeply your premise that it is somehow ok to take money from me, in the form of taxes, to bailout businesses homed in your state. Remember, Jennie, the federal government has nothing except that which it takes by force from its citizens.

Finally, she is partially right, in that the U.S. government did indeed bailout financial institutions. I’m tempted to comment on the effectiveness of that wise investment of taxpayer money — but it was neither wise, nor an investment — and it was done without legal authority. However, justifying more redistribution of wealth from taxpayers from every state in the country to bailout Detroit would not somehow make things right. Comparing the illegal actions taken by the U.S. government on behalf of the financial elite with the plight of auto workers is a call for another wrong… and we all know that two wrongs do not make a right.

Until next time,
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