Breaking News: An American car company will soon be taken-over by a business person who has expertise in the car industry. And the guy “taking over” is actually “happy” about it.
As the bankrupt General Motors corporation seeks to get rid of it’s “non core” car brands, Roger Penske, the American race car driver-turned global business magnate, will soon be purchasing Saturn, and taking over the sales, marketing, and distribution of Saturn cars and parts.
Penske‘s company will not be manufacturing Saturn cars themselves - he’s soliciting bids from other companies to design and build the cars for him - but will focus instead on what the Penske group does best. "Our success has been with handling the business that is closest to the customer,“ Penske stated when the news was announced, “so I don't want us to get into our own manufacturing business.."
You may have ignored this news, and it may seem like “no big deal” now. But consider how this conflicts with the predictions and assumptions made by Washington politicians.
Recall that fateful day (November 18th) back in 2008, when the executives of Ford, G.M., and Chrysler, took their turns before Congress begging for their “share” of bailout cash. “This is about much more than just Detroit," then- G.M. President Rick Wagoner stated, "It's about saving the U.S. economy from a catastrophic collapse."
And it was presumed that catastrophe would necessarily ensue, if our government didn’t “bailout” the car companies. “We're concerned about the hundreds of thousands and millions of people who are involved in the automobile industry” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid rationalized 2 days later, “we want them to have the jobs..” If our tax dollars weren’t spent to save these companies from their own mismanagement, then, to follow Senator Reid’s logic, the companies would simply cease to exist, and “millions” would be unemployed.
But we all know what happened after the U.S. car exec’s groveled. Politicians insisted that without their meddling, the entire industry would collapse, and so they went about meddling. The Congress tried to pass a “car bailout bill,” but it failed. President Bush then used his executive powers to take money from the TARP (bank bailout) funds, and doled-out a few billion to G.M. and Chrysler (Ford had to good sense to say “no thanks”). In doing this, Bush completely defied the will of the people and the Congress, and kept Chrysler and G.M. afloat just long enough for Obama to get inaugurated.
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.