Sanity Injection

Injecting a dose of sanity into your day’s news and current events.

Archive for December 19th, 2008

Once again, Venezuela’s Chavez shows contempt for democracy

Posted by sanityinjection on December 19, 2008

The issue this time is that Chavez is term-limited from running for re-election. Chavez and his supporters want to have a voter referendum to change the law to allow him to run again.

The reason this is inherently anti-democratic has nothing to do with whether term limits are a good or bad idea. Rather, it is the violation of the principle that major changes aren’t supposed to apply to incumbents for good or for ill.

For example, when the US Constitution was changed to limit US Presidents to two terms, the change specifically did not apply to FDR, the sitting President. When Congress votes itself a pay raise, the pay raise never applies to the sitting Congress, but only to the one that will take office after an election.

Thus, there’s nothing wrong with having a referendum on removing term limits from the Presidency. The problem is that Chavez should be excluded from the change, so that the vote is a vote on term limits generally, not a vote for or against Chavez, which is exactly what this referendum will be. And Venezuelans are well aware in their socialist mob state what the consequences of an anti-Chavez vote can be.

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Details of the final auto bailout

Posted by sanityinjection on December 19, 2008

This one comes from the Bush Administration and does not have to be approved by Congress. It consists of $9.4 billion in emergency loans for GM and $4 billion for Chrysler. The companies will have to meet the same conditions specified in the Congressional plan that failed to pass – submit acceptable restructuring plans by March 31 or repay the loans immediately.

President Bush explained his rationale for approving the loans this way:

“If we were to allow the free market to take its course now, it would almost certainly lead to disorderly bankruptcy and liquidation for the automakers. Under ordinary economic circumstances, I would say this is the price that failed companies must pay. And I would not favor intervening to prevent the automakers from going out of business. But these are not ordinary circumstances.  In the midst of a financial crisis and a recession, allowing the U.S. auto industry to collapse is not a responsible course of action.”

The problem with this is that there is no way that GM and Chrysler are going to meet that March 31 deadline. The biggest reason is that without bankruptcy protection, they will be unable to get relief from their creditors and they will be unable to force renegotiation with the auto workers, whom you will recall have refused to discuss changes to their contract which extends through 2011. I don’t see how they can become solvent without these steps.

That is the difference between this plan and the Congressional plan, which in its final form would have required the creditors and the UAW to come to the table. The Bush Administration can’t make that happen by itself. Therefore, while I sympathize with what the President is trying to do, I think it’s misguided and will fail. April Fools will be on the taxpayer when GM and Chrysler default on their loans and go into bankruptcy. With no Congressional law requiring the government to be paid before other creditors, we’ll be lucky to get half of that money back.

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Addicted to having babies?

Posted by sanityinjection on December 19, 2008

That is the only conclusion I can draw from this nonsense:

I’m sorry, but when you have 18 kids, you have an addictive disorder. Something tells me these people are not millionaires, so how are they going to be able to provide properly for all those kids? I don’t doubt that they have a loving family, but at some point you have to step back and say love isn’t enough – you’ve got to be able to put food on the table.

Also, who is going to supervise all those children when they’re not in school? Inevitably, the older kids will have to help parent the younger kids. That means missing out on some of the fun other teenagers their age will get to have.

I don’t care what your views are on contraception, these people need to stop having children. If they don’t believe in birth control, they need to stop having intercourse. There should be a law that you become ineligible for any benefits such as welfare, food stamps, or Medicaid if you have more than a certain number of children. It is not fair to expect the taxpayers to subsidize this ultimately selfish behavior.

Posted in Domestic News | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

“Wolf! Wolf!” cried Detroit.

Posted by sanityinjection on December 19, 2008

Amidst all the hand-wringing over the domestic auto industry and the Bush Administration’s plans for a Treasury bailout, come the domestic auto sales numbers for 2008 (through November.) Guess which were the top two cars sold in America this year? The Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado. In fact, the Ford F-150 has been the best-selling vehicle in America for the past 27 straight years!

What does this tell us? It tells us that there is definitely an area where the domestic automakers can, and do, compete effectively with the foreign companies. It further suggests that the Detroit automakers are to blame for their own problems by trying to make a dozen different types of cars, instead of focusing on the ones they’re good at.

They need to stop wasting time trying to build cars to compete with the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord (third and fourth best sellers.) Maybe GM should build nothing but trucks from now on. There’s also no point in wasting a lot of money developing more domestic hybrid vehicles. The Japanese have such a huge lead in this area that Detroit will never catch up. They are far better off leapfrogging by going straight to CNG, hydrogen and full electric vehicles. Imagine if Chrysler, for example, could devlop a CNG Dodge Ram that delivers the same torque as a regular one!

Posted in Domestic News, Politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »