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The Almighty Buck Politics

GM's CEO Rejects Repaying Feds for Bailout Losses 356

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the loan-guarantees-bad-blank-checks-good dept.
PolygamousRanchKid writes with news that GM's outgoing CEO doesn't agree with the National Law and Policy Center's call for GM to repay the loss made by the Treasury from their bailout. From the article: "GM CEO Dan Akerson rejects any suggestion that the company should compensate for the losses. He says Treasury officials took the same risk assumed by anyone who purchases stock. Akerson said that GM repaid all the debt issued by the government beginning in December 2008 when George W. Bush was still president and extending into the first year of Barack Obama's presidency. He added that it was the Treasury's decision ... to take an ownership stake in the form of company shares."
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GM's CEO Rejects Repaying Feds for Bailout Losses

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  • by turkeydance (1266624) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @06:10AM (#45712255)
    now if it had been Bitcoins.......
  • by patrixmyth (167599) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @06:14AM (#45712269)

    Absolutely right, they shouldn't be forced to pay back government losses. They, along with every other too big to fail corporation, should pay annually in perpetuity into risk pool that will handle all future bail-outs. Not as a tax, but as an insurance pool, that coincidentally, should be required to be held in US treasury bonds.

    I'm sure if you presented that idea, they'd rush to substitute the $10b payback.

  • by Joce640k (829181) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @06:37AM (#45712329) Homepage


    a) It's the right thing to do, the money he took belonged to the people.

    b) It won't affect him, personally, on any level. His paycheck will be as big as ever.

    I guess he just enjoys being a tyrant and saying "no" to people when they come to him with reasonable requests.

  • Right and wrong (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Monoman (8745) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @06:45AM (#45712339) Homepage

    He is technically right and morally wrong.

    Let the shareholders decide by vote. We the consumers (and the taxpayers) can then decide if we want to continue to buy their products, bail them out, or invest as shareholders. This is a decision that will have very long term effects on GM that will affect them long after the CEO is gone. I know it will affect my future buying decisions.

  • by unitron (5733) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @08:21AM (#45712645) Homepage Journal

    uh that makes no sense at all.

    they should have gone bankrupt - or loaned money backed by their assets... having a pool that's kept only to keep failing companies running belongs to the history of the ussr.

    Who should have gone bankrupt? General Motors? They did.

    Or at least the previously exisiting corporation known as General Motors did. And the value of the shares of stock in that corporation fell to $0, and that corporation doesn't really exist any more.

    A new corporation also known as General Motors came into being, and issued stock, and it is some of that stock which the federal government purchased and then chose to sell for less than what they paid.

  • by Required Snark (1702878) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @08:22AM (#45712649)
    This illustrates that anyone who thinks that the US economy is actually capitalism is delusional.

    All the really big players are self serving cartels run for the benefit of the top tier insiders. The stock holders, clients and workforce are short changed and the largest profit goes to the Chief XXX Officers and the Board of Directors.

    When the Feds bought GM stock it was poison. No one in the investment world would touch it. If the government didn't take a gamble then GM would have been out of business. Remember that in capitalism larger risk should reap larger rewards for success. However when it comes to bilking the government (and thus the taxpayers), suddenly basic principles of risk and reward no longer apply.

    Speaking of rewards, look what happens when CEOs and the like screw everything up. No matter how horrible a job they do, they are always paid vast sums of money. Their performance has nothing to do with their payout.

    Look at Mozilo [], the CEO of Countrywide Financial. Time magazine him one of the "25 People to Blame for the Financial Crisis". He made hundred of millions of dollars. He settled all civil and criminal charges against him for $67.5 million, with Countrywide picking up $20 million. When Countrywide was at it's height, he made loans to all sorts of insiders at Fanny Mae and and Congress members and their families under a program called the "Friends of Angelo (FOA)" VIP program. It's all been swept under the rug.

    Another example is that unlocking a smart phone under contract is a federal level felony, like interstate drug dealing or kidnapping. Even though the Obama administration said they would try and change the law, the Trans Pacific Partnership treaty has a provision making this permanent. Since it's an international treaty, there would be no way to overturn this other then renegotiating the treaty will all the other countries. The phone company cartel has their dirty hands all over this. The various carriers only compete on one thing: who gets to take more out of you wallet while delivering the minimal service they can get away with.

    No real competition in the US. Move along, nothing to see...

  • not news for nerds (Score:4, Interesting)

    by nimbius (983462) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @08:40AM (#45712727) Homepage
    arguably not even stuff that matters. Most major banks fought repaying debts to the government under TARP, but lost. There is no reason to think GM would be so bold as to think they could get away with it. The real story, if any to be attributed, is that GM thinks raising a stink about this isnt likely to affect their public image or piss off the cloistered elite.

    Lemon socialism, the willful and intentional bailout of free market capitalist corporations at the expense of regular citizens, is something for which most americans have a seething distate but thats largely been ignored by the plutocracy. when it cant be shrouded from limelight, the rich funnel cash to the rich to convince the everyman that somehow poor people are a larger financial and social demon than the plethora of warbucks and moneysworths that strongarmed our leadership into writing off their willfull ignorance and criminal disregard for society outside their inculcated elite. GM does great disservice to this veil by hauling from the grave these hastily rested memories.

    when GM dog-eared its pockets in front of congress they were so displaced from how americans lived it took them two tries to get their sad-face and beggary right. they frustratedly plodded off their leer-jets and said goodbye to their inflight perignon as americans collectively cried WTF. They foresook their ferarris and told the driver instead to pilot an american SUV to the whitehouse in lieu of the Rolls Ghost to which all were accustomed. this to them was the equivalent of donning a shoeshine boys flatcap for an afternoon as they arrived still clad in a regality most americans would struggle to even approach. 'pay up of they all starve' they said, and pay up the government did. Through TARP and cash for clunkers and rebates innumerable the united states automotive industry received the largest bailout in history and for its efforts was rewarded with another eight years to kick its heels onto its mahogany desk while real innovators like Tesla were demonized at their behest for loans they legitimately worked to earn. Outflanked by foreign competetors, again, GM brokered deals with Nissan and Toyota to secure token technologies that customers wanted like hybrid or all electric systems but were rebuffed by a market that largely found an affordable and reliable solution elsewhere. They secured a token few volt owners; the battery powered equivalent of a diesel train. They buried the Aspine hybrid, the very same vehicle which executives traveled to congress, and instead invested in platforms designed in europe and brazil for the small efficient reliable vehicles they were incapable of producing domestically.

    so for GM to suggest they shouldnt pay back a part of a loan, while no different than any other industry, should be remembered as the day when the pot-bellied cousin of the elite dared to bring up its uncles marriage counseling.
  • by wienerschnizzel (1409447) on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @09:29AM (#45713009)
    If the company's liquidated assets total to less then it's outstanding debt, then yes, even the top preferred shareholders get zero money back. Back in 2008 when GM was bailed out the asset to debt ratio was about 1/2...
  • Re:real socialism (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @09:54AM (#45713189)

    When other progressives say stuff like this, it really pisses me off. Your statements are more than a little misleading. Those numbers only work out for you if you don't consider things like social security and medicare part of the social safety net. Including those expenditures pushes government spending on social programs well above combined corporate and DoD spending combined. If you want to have honest conversations with people, you need to be clear what you're talking about. Despite being budgeted differently, most people do consider social security and medicare part of government spending. It's misleading statements like that that turn off moderates (who can easily google the federal budget) from believing in the good intentions of us on the left.

  • Re:real socialism (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 17, 2013 @10:09AM (#45713307)
    FTFL: "About $59 billion is spent on traditional social welfare programs. $92 billion is spent on corporate subsidies. So, the government spent 50% more on corporate welfare than it did on food stamps and housing assistance in 2006. Before we look at the details, a heartfelt plea from the Save the CEO’s Charitable Trust..."

Everything that can be invented has been invented. -- Charles Duell, Director of U.S. Patent Office, 1899