RUSH: I don’t believe what I just heard except that I believe it. I can’t believe I’m hearing it spoken by a leader in the United States of America, but of course I have to believe it because I heard it. But I still don’t believe it. I cannot believe it! The news was depressing enough today before Obama gets up to announce how he doesn’t want to run General Motors as he lays out how he’s going to run General Motors. Good grief, my friends — oh, ho-ho. Welcome to broadcast excellence hosted by me, Rush Limbaugh. Here we are on the EIB Network. Great to have you with us. The telephone number, 800-282-2882. Cookie, get me — and if nothing else, get me the last five minutes of what Obama said just now in his little announcement of the government taking over General Motors. I’m going to paraphrase it, but I want you to hear it yourself. Man, oh, man, oh, man. Folks, he just told the adult generation today that your life is not going to improve before you die. He just said things are not going to improve before you die, that what we’re doing today is your sacrifice for your children and your grandchildren, that there are going to be further plant closings, there are going to be further job losses, there are going to be further dealership closings.
There is going to be a mess. We don’t want to run General Motors, he says, while he spells out how it’s going to be run. He was spelling out how now we’re gonna move forward on building these little putt-putt cars. That’s what General Motors and Chrysler are going to do and we in the federal government are going to boost our purchases to provide the impetus for these fuel economy cars. We’re going to boost our fleet purchases here of these kinds of cars. Now, there’s an interesting little aspect of this. General Motors makes these kinds of cars around the world. General Motors builds these cars in Europe. General Motors builds these cars in China and other places. This deal, from what I have been given to understand, will prevent General Motors from importing any of those cars that are made already overseas. They are going to have to be made here. Your choice in the kind of car you buy will soon be over. I can’t wait for you to hear this quote when he details how much worse it’s going to get and how we are all making a sacrifice for our kids and grandkids. Plants will close; jobs will be lost; dealerships will close.
You know what this guy is doing? He is implementing his campaign agenda without regard for current economic circumstances. ABC’s The Note today has an interesting little line as they were previewing this General Motors announcement today. It’s written by Rick Klein: ‘Maybe an all-consuming Supreme Court fight wouldn’t be that bad after all,’ they say, for Obama. Remember, now, we’re talking with I think all but official state-controlled media. Call it state-controlled, call it state-run, the media here is no different than the media Hugo Chavez has. So forget Drive-By Media. Forget mainstream media. It is now-state controlled media by their choice. The media is choosing to be controlled by the state, regardless how it happened it’s state-run media. And so ABC’s The Note here: ‘Maybe an all-consuming Supreme Court fight wouldn’t be that bad after all,’ to take attention away from this rotgut.
‘What’s filled the vacuum, as Judge Sonia Sotomayor hits the Hill this week, looks a lot like what President Obama doesn’t want to be talking about. He never signed up to be in the auto business. His election was about ending the culture wars. The old divisions were supposed to fade away.’ None of that’s true. He never signed up to be in the auto business? If he didn’t want to be in the auto business, he wouldn’t have furthered more bailout money that’s been thrown down the drain, he would have let them file for Chapter 11 way back when, before all this money was dumped and wasted. His election was about ending the culture wars? Just the exact opposite. His election was about creating and expanding wars between groups of Americans. The old divisions were supposed to fade away? The old divisions have never faded away. He is not a messiah, he is not a magician, he is a partisan liberal hack, which means that the old divisions are going to get sharper and have gotten sharper. They are not going to fade away. ‘The economic mess? He inherited it.’ Maybe so. You gotta admit that he inherited some of this. But he’s built on what he inherited. He has built on the mess. He is amplifying the mess, and he’s doing it on purpose.
This guy came into office with an agenda, a pure socialist agenda, and he’s implementing it without regard for current economic circumstances. You don’t raise taxes in a recession. You don’t do anything he’s doing in a recession. He’s doing it because that’s what he planned to do from the first days he read Saul Alinsky, from the first days at ACORN, from his first days as an activist, this is what he and his wife have been dreaming of doing, and they’re going to do it regardless. The Heritage Foundation has a great post today. We’re big believers in AskHeritage.org. It’s well worth your becoming a member. You can do it for as little as 25 bucks. They’re a think tank, lots of brilliant scholars writing on subject after subject. Here’s a post today: ‘Government Motors is Not the Answer.’ And here is a striking observation: ‘Despite claiming that the administration will not –‘ oh, he said this today. We’re not going to be involved in any aspect of running this company except in major decisions. We’re not going to be involved in running this company. You’ve got to hear this whole thing.
‘Despite claiming that the administration ‘will not interfere with or exert control over day-to-day company operations’ it is instructive that this announcement is being made by the President, from the White House, and not by the company’s CEO from either the company’s Detroit headquarters or the New York bankruptcy court.’ And they are exactly right in that observation. They’re appointing a new board of directors. It’s going to have United Auto Workers on it. ‘At midday today, President Barack Obama will announce details of his administration’s $30.1 billion plan to restructure General Motors. Despite claiming that the administration ‘will not interfere with or exert control over day-to-day company operations’ it is instructive that this announcement is being made by the President, from the White House, and not by the company’s CEO from either the company’s Detroit headquarters or the New York bankruptcy court. Since March of this year when the White House rejected GM’s restructuring plan, their interventionist actions have spoken much louder than their hands-off rhetoric.’ Amen. Heritage has it exactly right.
He goes up and says we don’t want to run it day to day and then spelled out how he’s gonna run it. He told us the kind of cars they’re going to make. He told us the kind of cars the government’s going to buy to boost their fleet purchases to provide an impetus for everybody else buying little cars that nobody wants. ‘Just days after the White House informed GM that they were unhappy with the company’s first restructuring plan, President Obama fired GM CEO Richard Wagoner.’ A guy who has no desire to run the company, fires the CEO. ‘The payoff from Obama’s handpicked replacement, current CEO Fritz Henderson, quickly became apparent when Henderson stood next to Obama in the Rose Garden and announced his support for the Obama administration’s new fuel efficiency standards: ‘GM is fully committed to this new approach.” It’s no accident that Obama rejected GM’s restructuring plan. I want you to listen to a sound bite. It’s gonna make you cry. Well, it may not make you cry, but it makes me cry — how right I was. How right I was. September 17th, 2008, I said this about government takeovers and how high the stakes were in the upcoming election.
RUSH ARCHIVE: We have automobile and aviation companies on the verge of bankruptcy or government ownership due to legislation and regulation in oil prices that could be half of what they are if Congress got out of the way. We are playing for keeps, folks. This is not just another election. Events have brought us to where the government has become so invested in the affairs of the private sector that the next president will determine if the private sector or the public sector is going to be calling the shots. Barack Obama is one of the people who could be making those decisions. Their enemies list is the private sector of this country where you work. Their enemy, all of their enemies, are your employers. You have it, you can see, side by side, A-B comparison, government runs mortgages, what happens? Government gets in charge and runs health care, what happens? Government gets in charge, fixes poverty, Great Society, what happens? Affirmative action, feminism, you talk about creating a meaner America? It’s liberal policies that pit groups of Americans against one another, on purpose. There needs to be a cleansing of this process at some point, folks. Either we take control of events and address them now or events will take control with disastrous consequences, if not for us, surely the next generation or two. And all those people making these decisions today, the members of Congress and all that will be long gone, but your kids and grandkids will not.
RUSH: September 17th last year. I warned you, and I’m sure all of you in this audience or the vast majority of you in this audience listened. Here we go, GM permanently closing nine more plants, three more to be put on standby. It’s the wrong Chyron, Fox and MSNBC. It is Obama permanently closing. Can we get this right for once? GM doesn’t exist anymore. GM’s in bankruptcy. This is Government Motors, this is Obama. He just told us more plants are going to close; more jobs are going to be lost; more dealerships shut down. Well, right now Fritz Henderson gets the dirty deed, he’s the CEO, he gets to announce the closings. Obama got to announce all the wonderful things, the government’s going to say this and say that, but here’s the GM CEO Fritz Henderson now talking about all the new plant closings and all of the dealership shutdowns and all the jobs to be lost, he’s detailing it. Obama forecast it, but he didn’t give the bad news per se. He’s leaving that to the GM guy. But this is all Obama’s doing.
Here’s Obama, my friends, as I interpret him. I inherited this, I inherited that, everything going wrong is somebody else’s fault, I inherited it. The majority of the good parts that I inherited I’m going to give to the unions, and what you inherit from me, you won’t be able to pay off for centuries, because I’m leaving you with nothing, I’m leaving you in debt. What you are inheriting from me is — and he believes this BS he is spewing — he believes it, folks, he’s a true believer. That’s what’s so scary. He believes this stuff. All right. We have brief time-out. Well, one more. Audio sound bite two. It’s very short, eight seconds. This is March 30th, two months ago, Barack Obama.
OBAMA: Let me be clear. The United States government has no interest in running GM. We have no intention of running GM.
RUSH: That statement expired today because today Obama announced how he’s running it.
RUSH: All right, here are the Obama sound bites that I heard just prior to the program beginning. Here’s the first of two.
OBAMA: I will not pretend the hard times are over. Difficult days lie ahead. More jobs will be lost. More plants will close. More dealerships will shut their doors, and so will many parts suppliers. But I want you to know that what you’re doing is making a sacrifice for the next generation, a sacrifice you may not have chose to make, but a sacrifice you are nevertheless called to make so that your children and all the — of our children can grow up in America that still makes things, that still builds cars, that still strives for a better future.
RUSH: Strives for a better future? Strives for a better future while you tell people they have none? He just told us we have no future, particularly if you are at present in the automobile industry. You have no future. You have to sacrifice. You are being called on to sacrifice. Sorry. Sacrifice is being mandated upon you, and you must do it for your children and grandchildren so that they can ‘grow up in an America that still makes things, that still builds cars, that still strives for a better future.’ My friends, Barack Obama now owns General Motors and Chrysler. Whatever happens to these companies down the road, Barack Obama owns it. He can no longer say he inherited the problems, because he’s now telling these two companies how they’re going to be run. Now, he’s saying he’s not doing that, but he is. He’s dictating to them the kind of cars they’re going to make. He’s going to provide an impetus for everybody else to buy those cars by having the government fleet upgraded. They’re going to buy these cars. Little tinfoil cars is what we’re talking about here. So there you have it. Your future is bleak. You are now engaged in sacrificing for the future of your kids and your grandkids. Here’s the second sound bite.
OBAMA: As our autoworkers and auto communities pass through these difficult times, we as a nation must do our part. That’s why in March I appointed Ed Montgomery, director of recovery for auto communities and workers. That’s why two weeks ago Ed announced a green jobs training program for autoworkers in hard hit communities. And that’s why last week Ed and Karen Mills, my Small Business Administration chief, traveled to Indiana to announce a new plan to provide loans to auto, RV, ask boat dealers to help finance floor plans. That’s why we are accelerating the purchase of a federal fleet of cars to jump-start demand and give the industry a boost at a time when it needs one. And that’s why I’m calling on Congress to pass fleet modernization legislation that can provide a credit to consumers who turn in old cars and purchase cleaner, more fuel-efficient cars. These are important steps on the long road to overcoming a problem that didn’t happen overnight and will not be solved overnight. I recognize that today’s news carries a particular importance because it’s not just any company we’re talking’ about. It’s GM. It’s a company that’s not only been a source of income but a source of pride for generations of autoworkers and generations of Americans. While the GM of the future will be different from the GM of the past, I am absolutely confident that if well managed, a new GM will emerge that can provide a new generation of Americans with the chance to live out their dreams, that can outcompete automakers around the world and that can once again be an integral part of America’s economic future.
RUSH: Barack Obama — who has never run anything! Barack Obama has never been in charge of one single enterprise that had as its objective the making and earning of a profit. He has never, as a bureaucratic, as an activist, he has never had to care about profit. In fact, Barack Obama sneers at the whole concept of profit. Profit, to him, is stealing. A company profits only by raping consumers and suppliers. They should not profit! They should simply sell everything as a zero-sum game, at cost, and stay in business as service to mankind, which of course would mean that no business would survive. So the Barack Obama — of zero, zilch, nada private sector experience — has the audacity to say, ‘While the GM of the future will be different from the GM of the past, I’m absolutely confident that if well managed, a new GM will emerge.’
Hey, bud, you’re managing it. You’re in charge. Mr. President, if you didn’t want people to think you’re in charge, you shoulda not said a word today. The announcement shoulda come from Fritz Henderson, wherever he is, either at the bankruptcy law firm in New York, in court, or in Detroit. But he didn’t make the announcement; you did. You spelled out the future of General Motors, now Henderson’s been sent out there with all the details of the horror that is to come. You gave us the generalities, Mr. President. So a man who’s never run a private sector business, who’s never been challenged to show a profit, a man who sneers at the concept of profit, now lectures us on how well GM can do if it is run well and managed well. Meanwhile, all of you in the automobile business today suck it up, because your days of profitability and success are over. You now are sacrificing for your kids and your grandkids.
RUSH: Three more audio sound bites from Obama and his General Motors press conference today. Here’s the first of the three.
OBAMA: These companies were facing a crisis decades in the making and having relied on loans from the previous administration, were asking for more. From the beginning, I made it clear that I would not put any more tax dollars on the line if it meant perpetuating the bad business decisions that had led these companies to seek help in the first place. I refused to let these companies become permanent wards of the state kept afloat on an endless supply of taxpayer money.
RUSH: This is like saying I don’t want to litigate the last eight years and then continuing to litigate the last eight years. I don’t want General Motors living as wards of the states. He wants us all living as wards of the state bottom line. Next bite.
OBAMA: GM’s management team, including its new CEO, Fritz Henderson, its interim chairman, Kent Kresa, and all of their colleagues has — have worked — has worked tirelessly to produce a plan that meets the strict standards I laid out at the beginning to streamline GM’s brands —
RUSH: Wait a second.
OBAMA: — clean up GM’s balance sheet —
RUSH: Wait a minute.
OBAMA: — and make it possible for GM to —
RUSH: Wait a minute.
OBAMA: — compete and succeed.
RUSH: Wait a minute. He doesn’t want run it, yet he talks about his handpicked CEO and his task force that did exactly as he told them to do. But he doesn’t want to run it. He doesn’t want them being wards of the state. The strict standards he laid out to streamline the brands and clean up the balance sheet — and he’s never done this himself at any financial enterprise. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Here’s the last one.
OBAMA: What we are not doing, what I have no interest in doing —
RUSH: Remember what you just heard.
OBAMA: — is running GM. GM will be run by a private board of directors and management team with a track record in American manufacturing —
RUSH: You’re dictating to them.
OBAMA: — commitment to innovation and quality.
RUSH: You’re dictating to them.
OBAMA: They, and not the government, will call the shots and make the decisions about how to turn this company around.
RUSH: You just called the shots in the previous sound bite.
OBAMA: The federal government will refrain from exercising its rights as a shareholder in all but the most fundamental corporate decisions. When a difficult decision has to be made on matters like where to open a new plant or what type of new car to make, the new GM, not the United States government, will make that decision.
RUSH: That’s simply not true. He just contradicted that in the previous two sound bites. He’s dictating the kind of cars they’re going to make and the government’s gonna buy the first fleet of them.
RUSH: Fifty-four percent of the General Motors bondholders approved of this. That means that 46% did not, pretty close to the election returns. This is a huge number of people and institutions and investors that did not approve of this to whom it has been rammed down their throats, this forced bankruptcy by the government. And think of all the bailout money that was spent prior to this when everybody said at the get go just let ’em file Chapter 11, oh, no, can’t do that, the warranties won’t be honored, who would buy a car? Well, they’re going to close 12 plants, they’re going to close a bunch of factories, dealerships, but Obama’s going to honor the warranties. Everything that coulda been done months ago is being done today except with the government in charge of it, not General Motors. Where are the news stories on all the little old ladies who got their clocks cleaned from this deal, all the people whose pension and retirements are invested, who got their clocks cleaned in this? Of course, the state-run media is not interested in any of that. The state-run media has no interest in any negative aspect of anything having to do with Obama, and if you remember nothing else, I want you to remember Obama saying this at the White House just prior to the show starting, it was a little bit after 12 noon Eastern time.
OBAMA: I will not pretend the hard times are over. Difficult days lie ahead. More jobs will be lost. More plants will close. More dealerships will shut their doors, and so will many parts suppliers. But I want you to know that what you’re doing is making a sacrifice for the next generation, a sacrifice you may not have chose to make, but a sacrifice you were nevertheless called to make so that your children and all of our children can grow up in an America that still makes things, that still builds cars, that still strives for a better future.
RUSH: He’s not just talking to automobile people here. He wants you to think that. He wants you to think he’s just talking to people in the automotive industry, but he’s talking to every one of us. I will not pretend the hard times are over. Difficult days lie ahead. More jobs will be lost. More plants will close. More dealerships will shut their doors. And so will many parts suppliers. But I want you to know that what you’re doing is making a sacrifice for the next generation. Your future is zilch. Your future is not worth talking about because you don’t really have one. And what you’re doing by biting the bullet here and living in the poorhouse is making sure your children and grandchildren have a wonderful future. You want to try to tell me how that figures out? How does that result take place? So Obama used taxpayer money to buy General Motors, and essentially give it to the United Auto Workers. See, this is the dirty little secret. Obama is returning the nation’s wealth to its rightful owners. We’ve got an economy in collapse, and he’s implementing his campaign agenda regardless. UAW is a political contributor and this is socialism. Barack Obama now owns the means of production and cronyism as well.
The real interesting aspect of this is that part of this deal bans General Motors from importing small foreign cars to sell that they make overseas. You know what this is? You gotta ask yourself, Obama wants us all in these new little tinfoil cars. New green jobs to produce them, save the economy, save the country, save the planet, stop our carbon emissions, he wants us all in these worthless little Podunk cars, right? Well, these companies already make ’em. They make ’em overseas where people over there don’t mind driving around in a bag of manure. But we can’t import those cars. GM could sell ’em, but we can’t import ’em. You know why? Because we have to protect manufacturing jobs as best we can. So this is protectionism, in addition to everything else. I don’t care who you are, protectionism has never built and grown an economy. It never has. So we have, in one little ten-minute announcement today, we have protectionism, socialism, and cronyism. The trifecta for Barack Obama, political payoffs, protectionism makes sense to socialists; it’s what they do. The White House kneecapped secured creditors on behalf of the UAW.
A Chapter 11 bankruptcy filed months ago would have produced a General Motors that looks far, far different from the one you see today. Taxpayer money was used to occupy the private sector and pay off a political contributor. The reason that Obama went through with the automobile bailout is ’cause it put UAW in an ownership position and on the board. Wall Street Journal here: ‘The Administration’s concessions to the UAW also restrict the company’s ability to import smaller, more fuel-efficient cars that it already makes overseas. UAW President Ron Gettelfinger boasted on PBS’s NewsHour last week that ‘we, quite frankly, put pressure on the White House, the [auto] task force, the corporation’ to bar small-car imports from overseas. GM is also selling its Opel operation in Europe as part of this restructuring, and the Washington Post reports that one of Treasury’s sale conditions is that Opel’s new owners must stay out of the US, and even out of China, where GM’s business is strong.’ This is pure protectionism to protect people that voted for Obama and shaft everybody else. And it’s not gonna work.
RUSH: Here’s that answer from Fritz Henderson, the acting CEO at General Motors. Obama is the CEO. This is in New York City at a news conference. An unidentified reporter asks Fritz Henderson: ‘President Obama has been very firm, really, talking about more fuel-efficient vehicles. Will there be pressure on you to come out with a new greener vehicle for the United States sooner?’
HENDERSON: We’re planning our business assuming that economies, as they improve, well higher oil prices than we have today. I think it’s a fair assumption. Uhhh, you have to make assumptions about your business but I think our view is that oil prices will trend higher. We learned one thing in 2008, and that is economic growth can drive sharp increases in oil prices. The consumer themselves have actually changed, but for example the mid-sized car segment here fuel economy, consumers are behaving as if fuel prices are higher than they actually are today. So I do think fuel economy will remain a key driver of the purchase decisions for consumers. So I think it’s very important. I think the market will drive it, first of all. So I think our objectives, both as a firm, as well as to the market, are in alignment with what not only President Obama but I think most governments around the world would view the importance of having more fuel-efficient vehicles. I don’t think it’s unique simply to the United States.
RUSH: I don’t know about you, but I don’t think he answered the question. He was asked if because of what Obama’s doing they’re going to have to make ’em sooner, and he gave market-related answers and the market doesn’t matter anymore. That’s the problem here. The market is not dictating the future of General Motors, despite how Fritz Henderson spoke here. Barack Obama is. But he didn’t want to say anything negative about Obama. The question was a softball. ‘Are you going to have to start making these putt-putt cars sooner than you thought you would because Obama is making you?’ YES, is the answer. You know what he also said in there? What he also said in there, in that answer, is the primary reason they are in trouble today is gasoline hitting four bucks.
Everybody has forgotten that. But when the price of oil went to 120, 130 a barrel, and that sent gasoline up to four bucks, that was the tipping point, and that’s when the bottom fell out. Not that they were healthy and rosy and everything else prior, and now he says people are still buying or not buying cars on the basis that gasoline is gonna again be four bucks. ‘And a growing economy…’ Now, he also said this. ‘We know that a growing economy rises or raises oil prices.’ Well, now, wait a second. It was just last year, wasn’t it, a year ago that the oil price was trending upward to eventually maybe 150 a barrel on one day, but averaging around 120 to 130 and during that time we kept hearing what about the economy? That it was tanking. We kept hearing the economy was tanking a year ago.
In fact, the US state-run media has been saying the economy’s been tanking for six years. So was it a rising economy that brought about $4-a-gallon gasoline? If it was a rising economy, then people would have been able to afford it a little easier than they were able to. So Fritz Henderson says here, ‘Well, you know, people are still behaving as though gasoline is four bucks.’ They’re smart. It happened once; it could happen again. Most people can’t understand an economic reason for it happening, and they start talking speculators and this sort of stuff and they think manipulation. They don’t think market; they think manipulation. So the consumer thinks you can manipulate and get it to four bucks you can manipulate it again to get it to five. And look out, folks, because as desperate as Obama is to get you in pieces of junk that you would never otherwise buy, if you don’t make the decision on your own to do it, steps will be taken where you have no choice, like higher gasoline prices.
RUSH: Shazam. Shazam! The numbers just keep getting bigger. Now it’s 14 plants that are going to close by 2011. Fourteen General Motors plants and three parts centers. So the bottom line here is, ‘The closures will reduce GM’s US facilities to 33 from 47 by 2011, and between 18,000 and 20,000 workers will be affected.’ Not only are these jobs ‘lost,’ these are not jobs ‘saved,’ Mr. President. And I don’t want you to forget this, because Obama lied through his teeth today saying on numerous points at numerous times during his press conference that he had — his announcement; there was no press conference — that he had no interest in running General Motors, that the government wasn’t going to run it. He didn’t get in the car business, none of that, yada yada yada yada. But he said this.
OBAMA: What we are not doing, what I have no interest in doing, is running GM.
RUSH: Remember that.
OBAMA: GM will be run by a private board of directors and management team with a track record in American manufacturing —
RUSH: Appointed by you.
OBAMA: — that reflects a commitment to innovation and quality.
RUSH: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
OBAMA: This, and not the government —
RUSH: — will call the shots and make the decisions about how to turn this company around.
RUSH: You heard that.
OBAMA: The federal government will refrain from exercising its rights as a shareholder in all but the most fundamental corporate decisions.
OBAMA: When a difficult decision has to be made on matters — like where to open a new plant or what type of new car to make — the new GM, not the United States government, will make that decision.
RUSH: He also said, ‘The government will refrain from exercising its rights as a shareholder in all but the most fundamental…’ The most fundamental is all. In all but the most fundamental? He wants you to think we’re barely going to be involved. What it really means is, ‘When it matters most, the federal government’s going to be involved in running General Motors.’ In all but the most fundamental decisions? The fundamentals are the most important decisions. The ‘fundamentals’ are the most important of anything. So what he’s saying is the exact opposite of the way it sounds. What he’s saying is, ‘We’re not going to get involved in minutia. I don’t want to get involved in daily progress reports, but the fundamental decisions like what kind of cars we’re going to make and where we’re going to open dealerships. For example I’m not going to let as many who didn’t donate to me own a dealership, I’m not going to let some Republican own a GM dealership who didn’t contribute to my campaign!’ That’s what this means.