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The Cash for Clunkers Boondoggle

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Look at the clash-for-clunker program, it's got a lot of problems. The Wall Street Journal, in fact, today has an editorial, "Hey, let's have a $4,500 subsidy for everything!" I wonder where they heard that. We discussed that on this program Friday. Listen how they start this thing: "Americans are streaming back into auto showrooms, and one reason is the 'Cash for Clunkers' subsidy. Democrats are naturally claiming this is a great success, while Republicans are claiming that because the program has run out of clunker cash so quickly, this proves government can't run the health-care system.

"How do we elect these people? What the clunker policy really proves is that Americans aren't stupid and will let some other taxpayer buy them a free lunch if given the chance." Now, that's the Wall Street Journal's take, and I think that people are looking at this a little wrong way, because what this is is a tax cut. Now, not everybody's getting this $4,500 or $3,500. You have to qualify for the cash for clunker program to do it, to qualify for it. But whose money is this? Whose money is this? The government is having to print this money. We don't have it. They have already spent all of our tax revenue and then some, times 10 or 20. But this is, to me, an example of how you would stimulate the economy. Nothing has forced people into automobile showrooms in the last two years like this. Nothing has.

This is a great lesson in how you genuinely stimulate an economy. You put money into the hands and pockets of the American people who make up the US economy. Now, you don't do that by writing them checks. You do it by cutting taxes, letting them keep more of what they earn, which incentivizes people to go work. It incentivizes them to earn more money. But, no, what are we doing? We're talking about extending unemployment compensation benefits! You know it's up to 79 weeks now? Seventy nine weeks. And the more you pay people unemployment compensation, the more they will not seek work. It's human nature, and anybody with any economic literacy knows this. So this is not... We're not doing this to be compassionate. We are doing this to create chaos.

We're doing this to create a crisis that then Obama and his people can say, "Okay, yeah, we're the only ones can fix it. The government's the only entity big enough to handle all this." They want you willingly to turn over as much of your liberty and your freedom and your earning power as you can, to them. Now, the cash-for-clunkers program, Republicans are opposing it, in a sort of unique way. McCain and some others are saying, you know what this is? I mean, look at who's... The majority of the money is going to automobile companies owned by who? Obama, the government. And so these companies are being subsidized, owned by the government with taxpayer money. They say we gotta stop this. That's through the Republican point of view. Jim DeMint also opposed to the program. I'm opposed to it because of the precedent that it sets that you can only buy a car if the government gives you some money.

Now, people don't look at this as getting their... Some people do, but most people don't look at this as getting your their own money back. They just look at it as a deal. But the government proved it can't even run this. It's the most simple transaction that Americans engage in, the automobile trade-in, and they can't even manage this, a $1 billion program! But it does reveal -- despite all the flaws, it reveals -- how you really stimulate an economy. And I'll guarantee you, if this program dies and doesn't get fueled with any more money it's because they have ultimately decided they don't want you to have that much money. They don't want your hard-earned tax money to be returned to you in whatever way it comes. It's just a golden opportunity here to learn who these people really are and what it's all about.

It does show... The Journal headline here: "Let's Have a $4,500 Subsidy for Everything -- [T]his is crackpot economics. The subsidy won't add to net national wealth, since it merely transfers money to one taxpayer's pocket from someone else's, and merely pays that taxpayer to destroy a perfectly serviceable asset [a car] in return for something he might have bought anyway." It's on the CARS website. I went and looked at it today. There's actually a demonstration of how to take a perfectly good Volvo and ruin it and make it qualify for the program. There's a video. It's gone "viral," as the kids say, on YouTube. And there are instructions on the CARS website how to take your perfectly fine Volvo and ruin it to the point that it qualifies for the program.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Let me clarify something here, folks. I've not been speaking accurately on this YouTube video on the engine disablement. I've been saying the video shows you how to disable it to make it qualify. That's not what happens. The instructions on the CARS website are for the dealer to disable a car to make it qualify as a "clunker" when you bring it in. The whole point of this is if people bring in working cars, the dealers at the government's instructions disable them so that they will not run. (interruption) Would you...? (interruption) I know it's worse. I apologize for not being clear on this, but let me just read a couple things from the government's own website on this.

This procedure is entitled, "Engine Disablement Procedures for the CARS Program -- THIS PROCEDURE IS NOT TO BE USED BY THE VEHICLE OWNER -- Perform the following procedure to disable the vehicle engine. -- 1. Obtain solution of 40% sodium silicate/60% water. (The Sodium Silicate (SiO2/Na2O) must have a weight ratio of 3.0 or greater.) 2. Drain engine oil for environmentally appropriate disposal. ... CAUTION: Wear goggles and gloves. Appropriate protective clothing should be worn to prevent silicate solution from coming into contact with the skin." This is all about disabling a perfectly fine car to make it qualify. (sigh)

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Here's Jim DeMint, by the way, on the cash-for-clunkers program. He was on Fox News Sunday yesterday. Chris Wallace said, "Look, as many as 250,000 new cars were bought in the very first week in the midst of a recession. Why do you oppose putting more money into the program?"

DEMINT: This is another bill that congressman and senators didn't even read. The federal government is getting in the used car business, and we think, "Hey, this is working great." But my children and grandchildren are going to have pay for these cars and we're helping auto dealers while there are thousands of other small businesses that aren't getting the help. The role of the federal government is not to run the used car business, and it's clear. You can look at Amtrak or the Post Office and now cash for clunkers. The federal government went bankrupt in one week in the used car business and now they want to run our health care system. I just think this is a great example of the stupidity that's coming out of Washington right now.

RUSH: Chris Wallace said, "Look, it sailed through the House in a day. It's going to come up to the Senate next week. Are you going to be able to block it?"

DEMINT: I've heard John McCain is going to stand up and try to stop it, and I'm going to work with him every way I can.

WALLACE: That means a filibuster?

DEMINT: It makes no sense. I don't know what it means right now, Chris, but this is crazy to try to rush this thing through again while they're trying to rush through health care and they want to get on to cap-and-trade electricity tax. We've gotta slow this thing down.

RUSH: Yeah. Unfortunately, Senator, you don't have the votes to do it. Filibuster the cash-for-clunkers program. The one thing that some people... (interruption) What's your read on this, Snerdley? You think people like the program? (interruption) I think a lot of people do. Of course, they're getting the $4,500 trade-in; or $3,500, depending on what quality their car is and so forth. But it's interesting to note that Chrysler and General Motors are owned by the government. The government is paying itself, and the United Auto Workers union people who work there. It's very typical. I have a friend in Kansas City. Now, I haven't seen... Have you seen any TV commercials for the program? (interruption) Then you confirm this. I haven't. I was away from television all weekend. I didn't have it on.

My friend in Kansas City said watching these commercials, and if you didn't know better -- 'cause taking sound bites from Obama commenting on the cash-for-clunker program -- the commercials make it look like Obama is selling you a car at a real steel of a deal, that Obama is actually the one making this happen. Obama is involved! Obama wants you to have 4,500 bucks so you can go out and get rid of this clunker. And, by the way, if you take in a perfectly good car, it has to be disabled. It may be a perfectly fine car that doesn't qualify mileage-wise and whatever. In other words, you don't really have to have a clunker. They're going to take what you take in and make it a clunker if they have to! They're gonna ruin the engine, is basically what they do. It's a 14-step process. Is that an accurate description of the commercials you're seeing for this or are you seeing local dealer commercials? (interruption) Mmm-hmm. Well... (interruption) Mmmm. (interruption) Yeah, the foreign auto spots I've heard, too, are funny. "We're better than the American cars. Come in and deal with us."

END TRANSCRIPT

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