Unto Themselves

In the wake of last night’s blasphemous-but-hilarious South Park, George Will’s piece on Obama’s emerging authoritarianism on the economy is perfectly-timed.

…the Obama administration, judging by its cavalier disregard of contracts between Chrysler and some of the lenders it sought money from, thinks contracts are written on water. The administration proposes that Chrysler’s secured creditors get 28 cents per dollar on the $7 billion owed to them but that the United Auto Workers union get 43 cents per dollar on its $11 billion in claims — and 55 percent of the company. This, even though the secured creditors’ contracts supposedly guaranteed them better standing than the union.

That’d be some of the “change” for which some of President Obama’s supporters had “hope”; the law no longer means what it says it means.

Among Chrysler’s lenders, some servile banks that are now dependent on the administration for capital infusions tugged their forelocks and agreed. Some hedge funds among Chrysler’s lenders that are not dependent were vilified by the president because they dared to resist his demand that they violate their fiduciary duties to their investors, who include individuals and institutional pension funds.

Not only trampling the law himself, but demanding that the hedge fund managers do the same?  In for a penny, in for a buck, I guess.

This is not gross, unambiguous lawlessness of the Nixonian sort — burglaries, abuse of the IRS and FBI, etc. — but it is uncomfortably close to an abuse of power that perhaps gave Nixon ideas: When in 1962 the steel industry raised prices, President John F. Kennedy had a tantrum and his administration leaked rumors that the IRS would conduct audits of steel executives, and sent FBI agents on predawn visits to the homes of journalists who covered the steel industry, ostensibly to further a legitimate investigation.

It’s appropriate that President Obama is paying homage to the last president who was more demigogic legend than fact.

I’ll add emphasis on the home stretch:

The Obama administration’s agenda of maximizing dependency involves political favoritism cloaked in the raiment of “economic planning” and “social justice” that somehow produce results superior to what markets produce when freedom allows merit to manifest itself, and incompetence to fail. The administration’s central activity — the political allocation of wealth and opportunity — is not merely susceptible to corruption, it is corruption.

The arrogant abuse of government power to ignore laws and manipulate the economy?

Finally, a problem the Administration can’t blame on the previous one…

 

2 thoughts on “Unto Themselves

  1. And lookee here:
    http://www.freep.com/article/20090513/BUSINESS01/905130318
    Chrysler will bypass the Obama imposed exec pay crap by making the execs Fiat employees.
    They’re spending our money, our kids’ money, and our grandkids’ money & they have no idea what they are doing.
    2010 looks better all the time. Bush can’t run in 2012, but I want to be the first to nominate Cheney. If his ticker holds out.

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