Monday, March 30, 2009

Obama - Messiah Or Dictator?

There is a difference between anger and worry. I've experienced too much of both lately as I watch the administration try to mend the financial crisis by trial and error.

Today, I'm halting the emotions at worry. Tomorrow it may well be back to full blown anger. I am extremely uncomfortable with the sanctions that are being heaped on corporations receiving bailout money without the ground rules being set at the get go.

Take for instance the exit of Rick Wagoner from GM. GM was to submit their reorganization plans by March 31. That's tomorrow. However, the "auto czar", who has no auto industry experience, decided it wasn't adequate. The President, on his own, told Wagoner if there was to be any chance for GM to get additional help he had to go. Did Obama have that right? Should he have that right?

Granted, the GM board should have removed Wagoner long ago. And yes, it's tax payer dollars being used to bail them out. But without preset rules and an arbitrary opinion from someone outside the industry, it makes Mr. Wagoner the scapegoat. For what? To make the administration look tough?

I listened to Obama say that for GM to go in a new direction it needed new leadership. Wagoner's number two took over. Is that new leadership?

Okay, there can be a lot of arguments for everything the administration is doing because of tax payer dollars. However, more and more it looks to be an attempt to change the way corporate America works and if so, you'll soon see us as a diminished nation even more than we already are.

The New York Times had a story which was even more frightening. They are considering regulating executive pay via regulation rather then legislation. This smacks of dictatorship.

Even worse, they are considering extending this practice to financial institutions not receiving bailout money and even to publicly traded companies.

Obama campaigned on regulation to give share holders a larger say in setting executive pay. Well, that's the responsibility of the board. If the shareholders don't like what the board is doing they can vote them out. The hitch here is the shareholders have to exercise their right and vote their proxy's if they can't attend the annual meetings.

Just like politics. You have to vote to have a say. The responsibility, in that respect, falls on the shareholders, not the executives.

"What about corporate greed?" you may ask. There is far too much of it to be sure. But if what the administration is attempting doesn't shape them up nothing will. They will just move off shore.

Speaking of greed, how about the greed for power? To have the ultimate authority to reshape an entire country into a vision not necessarily sanctioned by the people? To dictate what CEO's can and cannot do while giving Unions a pass? By doing an end run around Congress?

Think about it. We criticized the Bush administration mightily for all Bush's signing statements stating he was going to ignore parts of passed legislation. We criticized Bush for ignoring the Constitution on many occasions. We criticize the Christian Conservatives for trying to hijack the government so they can force their agenda on those of us who don't agree with it.

I'm worried. Oh, yes I am. I see our President running around the country and the world as head cheerleader while in truth the team is making up the rules as they go. Who's our cheerleader and how can we win? Without a say, we can't.


Anonymous said...

People wished for change. Obama promised change...without saying just what kind of change. Reminds me of the old saying, "be careful what you wish for". This bunch also reminds me of another old saying, "throwing the baby out with the bathwater". This latest tact is because the current presiding gang got their collective noses caught in the wringer over AIG.

Worried...yes. betcha.

Word Tosser said...

We have had the goverment come in and take over two different companies that I am aware of, and displace the whole crew, and bring in their own to run the business. One is banks and nursing homes.

I watched a show not too long ago, showing the FDIC crew come into the bank at the close of day, take over the whole bank. Discharge everyone from the President down to the tellers. They do an audit and then open the bank for business with their own crews. And the bank continues. And when they hire some new people to take over, then the FDIC people go.

Same with nursing homes, when the inspectors come in and find a nursing home completely in violation, the Feds come in with a crew and take out the top office people, and may take out the RN's as well.

This is a practice of over 50 years, for these two businesses.

Linda said...

No one peeped a word when Paulson removed the CEO of AIG.

I applaud President Obama's actions related to the auto industry.