Tag Archives: automaker

Sliding Into Socialism & Smile

Some mornings I wish I didn’t peruse the news. Today was one of those mornings.

The stories were thick of people expecting things from the government, wanting the government to reach down and touch them, trying to get things through misuse of government power and responsibility.

The “big 3” are back in Washington, driving this time apparently for PR purposes, asking for more money. The proposed solutions generally include the government taking some significant stake in the companies. Everything from a “Car Czar” to enforced restructuring (which I would agree with IF I agreed with a bailout at all).

Then there are the world markets. Asian markets are quite happy the US government will step into the big brother mode again and prop up weak parts of the US economy.

And if you bail out the big guy, the little guy wants his piece of the pie too. In a small story blown big, Barack Obama has proven he really does care about the little guy and each individual American by themselves. He says the workers staging a ‘sit-in’ at a Chicago-area manufacturer are “absolutely right” in demanding not just their owed wages and normal severance pay but also pay for accrued vacation as that manufacturer has declared bankruptcy and is currently in liquidation proceedings.

Apparently Bank of America held the business credit lines for the company and refused to offer more credit as it saw the sales of the company plummetting.

The issues here, expounded upon by John and Cisco on the morning show on Chicago’s AM560, are these: What responsibility does BoA have after their own bailout and largess received from the government? And at what point should a bailed-out bank still be able to protect it’s assets by allowing truly faulty companies to fail.

The whole failure and bailout cycle is ferocious in that it is, more often than not, better to allow a company to die naturally than to prop up failed and faulty business models and management/labor relations.

My opinion? Because we’ve already got ourselves into this mess. The workers are justified in expecting a little bit of this themselves, but only what is justly owed. BoA should be admonished to extend enough credit to cover immediate owed wages to the workers with collateral being the amount the bank will recoup from the liquidation of the companies assets (I agree with John and Cisco here).

Jesse Jackson has likened the plight of these workers to that of the blacks during the civil rights movement.

That man has no shame. Willing to sell even his own birthright for another 15 minutes in the spotlight.

And both Obama and Jackson find an ally in the Socialist Worker, the newspaper of the International Socialist Organization.

Socialist Worker has strived to be a source of information like no other, presenting a socialist analysis of the events and forces that have shaped today’s world and sharing the voices of those involved in the many efforts to try to change that world. As a result, SW has always gravitated to the stories of struggle that rarely, if ever, appear in the mainstream media–the coal miners in Kentucky fighting for their rights, the South African workers and students who toppled apartheid, the young women and men who stood up to corporate globalization in the streets of Seattle, the veterans and active-duty soldiers resisting the U.S. war for oil and empire in Iraq.

Strange bed-fellows indeed. Not that it would surprise anybody who bothered researching and learning the truth prior to Election day.

But you can smile, and mean it, and affect more people than you know. If you know me you know I like to smile. A lot. It’s just so much more fun to smile than otherwise.

So when studies are showing that being happy affects more than your immediate circle of acquaintances, but can affect people up to 3 degrees removed from the original happy person, I became very happy.

Are you happier now? It’s because I am. And so are your friends.