The mendacity of the Republican Senate's decision to scuttle a bail out of Big Three automakers is only surpassed by their venality in trying to finger the UAW as the culprit in the piece. There is little question that management at the Big Three has been clueless for years, but even they can't be blamed for the fact that their retiree workforce is three decades older than those of Japanese and Korean automakers.
Nor are they responsible for the skyrocketing costs of health care that the dysfunctional U.S. system has burdened them with, a burden that the union took off their shoulders in the recent negotiations at great risk to its own retirees, let alone its credibility in the face of a collapsing market. To reduce this dilemma to the outdated politics of anti-unionism is a cynical admission that Michigan may forever be beyond Republican reach and that the Republicans are circling the wagons around their Southern base, where foreign automakers operate "union free."
The simple fact is that in addition to the enormous social and economic consequences of a hard landing for Chrysler and GM in particular, the Republicans will be wearing the albatross of bailing out Wall Street while abandoning working Americans for years to come. Even Herbert Hoover wasn't this stupid!
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