From the Cheap Seats: The Endless Auto Bailout

August 14, 2012

A new Treasury Department report says taxpayers can expect to lose more than $25 billion of the $85 billion auto bailout, up 15% from the last estimate

One of President Obama’s most potent campaign-trail arguments has been that he “saved” the American automobile industry.

Proglodytes just love it when Obama crows that he saved Detroit, like a surgeon rushing in to order a transfusion for a bleeding patient. 

Most competent surgeons would not be content, of course, to merely pump more blood in. They would look for the leak and close it.  Not our president though, according to a recent report released by the Treasury Department — one that somehow slipped past Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner (perhaps he was busy trying to figure out some new Turbotax software).

Anyway, the report says the federal government can expect to lose more than $25 billion of the $85 billion auto bailout. That’s 15 percent higher than the last estimate of the bleeding, or up from $21.7 billion the last time the Treasury Department took a look, which it does every quarter.

In the meantime, shares of General Motors dropped to $20.47 on Monday.

That translates to an additional taxpayer loss of about $850 million based on the taxpayer ownership of 500 million shares of GM, aka Government Motors.

To make taxpayers whole, the Obama administration would have to sell all those shares for $53 each.

It’s worth noting that the taxpayer loses nothing when Ford shares drop because, well, Ford said no to the “free” government bailout (and by “free” we mean paid for by all of us working stiffs).

The Congressional Budget Office already has written off $8 billion from the bailout of GM and Chrysler Group LLC.

Taken altogether, what this means is that Obama rushed in to save a dying patient, put the poor sucker on life support without trying to find out the cause of the illness, then grabbed a martini and billed the  insurance company – U.S. taxpayers.

Isn’t he that same guy who wants an Independent Payment Advisory Board to cut off  money when patients get too expensive?

Just asking.

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