As GM Goes, So Goes the GOP

Understandably, Republicans are

When Hank Paulson demanded
$700 billion
to haul away the trash in the dumpsters
JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs
—assuring us we
could hold a garage sale of the junk—they rebelled. They
acted as the nation, by 100 to one, demanded. They
killed the Wall Street bailout.

The Dow quickly sank another 1,000
points, and, charged with criminal irresponsibility by
the elites, the GOP buckled, reversed itself, rescued
the bailout—and was wiped out on Nov. 4.

Now we hear from Paulson that the
$700 billion Congress voted will not, after all, be used
to buy up all that

rotten paper
on the books of the big banks. Some
banks are using the cash to buy other banks.

So Republicans are right to be
enraged. They are victims of the biggest bait-and-switch
in political history.

But they are now about to do
something terminally stupid. With GM, Ford and Chrysler
teetering on the brink, they are turning a cold stone
face to Detroit
and are about to follow the counsel of that
quintessential Bushite Dick Darman, who

of our computer chip industry,
"If our guys can`t hack it, let `em go."


letting George H.W. Bush and Darman go.

Are Republicans aware of what they
are about to do?

When workers, execs, engineers,
dealers, salesmen and suppliers are all factored in, the
Big Three employ 3 million people who contribute $21
billion a year to Social Security and Medicare, and $25
billion in federal income taxes. Add in all the
businesses that depend on the auto industry, and we are
talking about one-tenth of the U.S. labor force.

As columnist
Tom Piatak of
and writes
, 850,000 retirees, and their
families, depend for pensions and health care on the Big
Three. If they go under, the burden falls on us.

And to let the auto industry die is
to write America o out of
much of the economic future of the planet.

In a good year, like 2005,
Americans buy more than 17 million new cars, and West
Europeans as many. Tens of millions in Eastern Europe, Russia, China, India and
Southeast Asia
are now moving into the
middle class each year. These folks will all need or
want one or two family cars. If we let the U.S. auto
industry die, that immense and burgeoning market will be
lost forever to America, and
ceded to Asia.

"Who cares?"

comes the free-traders` reply. Japanese and Koreans are
setting up factories here. They can pick up the slack.

But that means Americans will work
for and depend on foreign companies for a necessity of
our national life as vital as the imported oil and gas
on which our cars and trucks operate. All the profits of
the mighty automobile industry in
will be sent

Before Republicans follow this
free-trade fanaticism to their final interment, they
might study the results of a poll by Peter Hart: [PDF]

  • Seventy-eight percent of Americans believe the

    auto industry is highly or extremely important. Three
    percent think we can do without it.
  • Ninety percent of Americans believe the death of the

    auto industry would do
    great damage to our economic future.
  • By 55 percent to 30 percent, Americans favor federal
    loans to save it. And by 64 percent to 25 percent
    Americans back President-elect Obama`s resolve not
    to let the


    auto industry go under.

If the GOP blocks these loans, and
the industry dies, the party can forget about
Michigan and
the industrial Midwest.
For the Reagan Democrats will never come home again. Nor
should they.

By the choices we make, we define
ourselves and reveal what we truly care about. Thus,

We bail out the
New York
and D.C. governments of
Abe Beame and Marion Barry. We bail out a corrupt
. We bail out
public schools that have failed us for 40 years.

We bail out with International
Monetary Fund and World Bank loans and foreign aid
worthless Third World

We bail out
Street plutocrats and big banks

But the most magnificent industry,
the auto industry that was the pride of

and envy of the world, we surrender to predator-traders
from Asia
and Europe, lest we
violate the tenets of some 19th-century ideological
scribblers that the old Republicans considered the
apogee of British stupidity.

Nancy Pelosi is talking about tying
loans to a restructuring of the industry. But Congress
is not competent to do that.

What needs to be restructured is
the U.S.
tax-and-trade regime.

Dump globalism. Instruct Japan, Canada, Korea, Germany and China that if
they wish to sell cars here, they will assemble them
here and produce the parts here. And we shall have the
same free access to and same share of their auto market
as they have of ours.

To accomplish this, use the same
import quotas and tariffs Ronald Reagan used to save the
steel industry and Harley-Davidson.

Reciprocal trade. Even Democrats
like FDR used to practice it.



Patrick J. Buchanan


no introduction
to VDARE.COM readers;
his book
State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America, can be ordered from His latest book
is Churchill,
Hitler, and "The Unnecessary War": How Britain Lost Its
Empire and the West Lost the World,



Paul Craig Roberts.