Sunday, February 22, 2009

Clement thinks he can be half pregnant

This auto bailout is becoming absurd, courtesy of the clown who is orchestrating it, Tony Clement.

First we have Clement arguing that the bailout of GM will be by way of repayable loans on “commercial terms”.

Commercial terms? What an inherently deceitful concept that is, since there are no "commercial terms" on which third party non governmental lenders would provide financing to GM, which is why the bailout is necessary in the first place. Sheesh.

Second we have Clement voicing support for the GM proposal before he has any firm idea on how much money is required? File that under dead stupid and incompetent.

Then we learn that the bailout money isn’t for GM proper, but rather to allow GM to make good on its unfunded pension obligations, whereby the proposition has now become that GM will preserve a mere 7,000 jobs if Canadian taxpayers underwrite the open ended, long tailed liability associated with 52,000 retired GM employees? With odds like that, taxpayers can only be assured of losing.

And now we have Tony Clement bravely saying that the Government won’t lend any additional money to GM, if they come-a- callin' at some later date. This is anything but awe inspiring. We have the Government of Canada prepared to throw $7 billion at GM to support some ill defined strategy, knowing full well that it may be insufficient? Talk about backing a known loser. What’s the point of bailing out a sinking ship? Not a dime should go into bailing out GM, unless Canadian taxpayers can be assured that the plan has been stress tested as being fully funded, otherwise what’s the point? Until Clement can ensure Canadian taxpayers that this bailout money is full and sufficient in terms of creating a viable GM, then it merely becomes an grand political exercise in buying time, and wasting taxpayer money.

If Mercedes can come out with a Smart Car, why can’t Tony Clement and Michael Bryant come up with a Smart Bailout, assuming such a beast exists?

Clement says auto bailout will be the last

Updated Sun. Feb. 22 2009 12:57 PM ET News Staff

Industry Minister Tony Clement says "the answer would be no" if automakers want bailout funds in addition to what they have already asked for in their restructuring plans submitted last week.

Speaking Sunday on CTV's Question Period, Clement said the federal government has asked for detailed restructuring plans that show automakers are committed to turning around their financial fortunes and ensuring their viability.

But, should the government send the billions in bailout money the automakers have requested, they should not expect more funds in the future.

"They may come back for more but the answer would be no," Clement said.

He went on to say that the automakers must submit long-term plans -- not a short-term outlook.

"If their viable plan is, 'Here's the plan for the next six months,' that's not a viable plan in my opinion," Clement said. "So my recommendation would be, let's do this once, let's do it right, and let's make sure that this industry can be on the best footing so it doesn't cost taxpayers down the line."

On Friday, General Motors Canada, which is asking for about $7.5 billion from the federal and provincial governments, said it would maintain proportional Canadian production levels compared to the U.S.

While the company also pledged it would not close any Canadian plants, it did say that it plans to cut its workforce in this country to 7,000 employees by 2010. In 2005, the company employed 20,000 Canadians.

Chrysler, which has already requested about $1 billion in funding, also submitted restructuring plans, but the document was the same one sent to U.S. officials earlier in the week. The company said that its operations are so integrated across North America that it could not submit a Canada-specific plan.

However, Clement said Sunday that the company did provide Canadian officials with more details on its plans for the Brampton and Windsor assembly plants that will be evaluated in the coming days.

When asked if he is required to say yes to requests for bailout money given that letting automakers go bankrupt would lead to thousands of job losses and would devastate the Ontario economy, Clement said no.

"I'm not in the business of folding like a three-dollar suitcase on this kind of stuff," Clement said. "We are dealing with taxpayer dollars here. These are conditional loans, fully repayable and they're subject to conditions."

Clement said that automakers are required to prove to the government that they not only have long-term viability plans, but that they are also committed to lowering the lost of manufacturing a car in North America so they can be more competitive with foreign automakers.

He also warned that the government would not bail out the pension plans for automakers should they go bankrupt.

"This is not money for nothing," Clement said. "It is repayable loans with a lot of conditions attached so that taxpayers are confident that we're not just flushing money down the toilet."


Dr Mike said...

My God , now doesn`t this sound about "government level" typical.

Clement is willing to sink us several billion in debt to "maybe" produce a solution.

This is our several billion & I don`t know about anyone else , but I want some real freaking assurances & not some half-baked promise (not backed-up with a "real" plan) to repay.

What do these clowns have as collateral---How is their credit rating--how have they done in the past business-wise.

If I had credentials like GM , nobody , no-where , at no-time , except for maybe Jimmy "the Wrench" , would lend me 50 cents.

So good news, give them a few billion & see if it sticks.

Bite me you gov`t nimrods if you think this is a plan that sits well with anyone other than GM , it`s workers & it`s retirees.

This turkey could not fly if it had 9 wings & I see nary a one.

Dr Mike Popovich.

The Right is Where it's At said...

Do you CAITI have any concrete solutions to this problem besides just criticizing the government? I thought so! No mater what this government tries to do it will never be good enough for you.

What has your liberal party proposes to the government that they should be doing about this bailout? I mean besides just giving vague comments. I haven't seen any media releases concerning this bailout from your precious liberals. Have you seen any CAITI?

Can you just imagine what would have happened if the government had refused to bailout the auto industry? Oh yea they tried that,didn't they? Everyone including your liberals were all falling over each other, saying that the government should be doing everything they possibly can to save the auto industry in this country! Just typical liberal nonsense! But I digress.

Anonymous said...

A bag of cement for Tony Clement?


crf said...

Oh, the Right is Where it is at, shall I tell you a story?

Remember the last election campaign? Canada seemed to be doing fine. The Liberals had the Green Shift as climate change and tax policy, to deal the real problems of climate change and advancing poverty. Stephen Harper had no climate change policy at all (and still doesn't), and his tax policy was to cut them, so that we could finally have a deficit, just like his model country, the united states, and his tax policy was to shovel tax cuts and spending at every conceivable bloc amenable to having their vote being bought off with their own tax dollars. The media loved the Harper policy, and Stephane's plan was hard for the man on the street to understand, and omgwtf: carbon tax??? Tax tax tax! Tax!!! tax tax tax tax ???? tax????!!!

Then the financial crisis began: and Stephane Dion noted this crisis actually existed, minimized the details of his green shift plan while realizing that the economics of this country were about to change so policy would have to change. And Harper ran ads showing a puffin pooping on Dion (ha ha ha: what a great policy: look, the other guy's a dork!), claimed carbon taxes were a threat to Canada and no economist would ever support them (yep, so true that :p), claimed Dion was panicking, told everyone to buy stocks and be positive (good plan: with that, the cons checked "deal with financial crisis" off the to-do list: and look what was next on the list: screw the opposition parties by crippling their finances!), and pretended Canada might cook up something to deal with global climate change ... in thirty years. Great plan that.

And the Conservatives won the election, and of course, what the responsible party in parliament had been worrying about began to happen: a financial crisis. The kind of crisis that having a large surplus, of the kind Harper wasted, might have come in handy for. And Harper panicked: he had NO PLAN. Harper's budget was a [i]disgraceful farce that would utterly ruin the Canadian economy[/i]. What's Dion to do? Should he let the country go down the tubes in letting Harper's idiotic first attempt at a budget pass, or should he take over and pass a budget the country needed? The Conservatives now still had no idea at all what to do. So they went into attack mode. The media, and the country, emphasized the idea that having a minority government led by a minority party would be somehow very illegitimate and a power grab, while utterly ignoring the question of why the coalition had been made in the first place. And they and the country killed Stephane Dion as a leader. Power grab? The only reason why the coalition was suggested was because Harper refused to actually lead the country against a looming terrible recession, and was instead bent only on leading a petty war against the opposition parties in parliament. They managed to save their skin by proroguing parliament to give them time to come up with a half-baked budget, that barely passed the test of the new liberal leader.

There is only one party in parliament that has a track record of recognizing economic and social realities, respecting the electorate and all parties in government, and shaping policy to deal with reality. It's the Liberal party. It's not Stephen Harper's conservative party.

The sooner Ignatieff calls an election, the better, as far as I am concerned.