You know, I’m leaning more and more that way. If we let GM et al. go bankrupt, something would take their place, and that something would be geared more to making the cars that the world actually wants with a more reasonable production cost.
A lot of things are pushing me that way, such as:
- The George Will piece I ran today, which effectively painted the former Big Three and UAW as wedded to failure, and wanting us to subsidize it.
- The consideration that here in the South we have an example of what is likely to replace Detroit, and it’s certainly a lot more attractive than what we’re being asked to prop up.
This time, Mark Sanford has a point:
Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina recently wondered whether BMW
would have ever built its plant in Spartanburg if the government had
been handing out money to its rivals, and Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of
Georgia voiced similar concerns about the state’s Kia plant, which
could bring 2,500 jobs to his rural district.
"Let’s face it, who would want to come over here and put their
investment into this country if they knew the government was going to
be subsidizing their competitors?" he said. "It’s just not right. It
just goes against the grain of the free-enterprise system."
It’s too bad he reacts that way to EVERYTHING that involves government action. If he’d only say this stuff when it actually makes sense, people would listen to him more. And this time, it makes sense.
Of course, if it were only good for South Carolina and bad for the country, I don’t think I’d support what he’s saying (at least, I hope not). But the fact is that increasingly, I don’t think propping up the disastrous business model of Detroit is in the country’s, or the planet’s, interests.
That said, Ben Stein gives me pause, warning that a GM bankruptcy would be bad for national security (Shades of "Engine Charlie" Wilson and his notion of "what’s good for the country"). Bueller? Bueller?
But what do y’all think? Bueller?