Friday, June 3, 2011


In May of last year, after General Motors initiated an ad campaign claiming they had fully repaid American taxpayers, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with Treasury for documents relating to the campaign. CEI Senior Counsel Hans Bader reports:

The documents produced as a result of CEI’s FOIA request show GM coordinating PR strategy with the Obama Administration more than three weeks before launching the campaign.
Starting on March 30, 2010, in advance of the GM’s planned launch of its campaign to announce that they had supposedly repaid taxpayers, Brian Deese from the Executive Office of the President and numerous Treasury Department officials began exchanging emails related to the announcement. (See pages 55-59;97-102.) These emails included draft schedules, draft remarks to be given by GM Chairman and CEO Ed Whitacre, and draft press releases from both GM and theTreasury DepartmentSee pp. 9-14; 18-24; 36-39; 83-96.
The Treasury Department saw the misleading advertisements GM was planning to make in advance. GM’s marketing strategy was laid out for Treasury Department officials, who had the opportunity to object, but raised no objections to these misleading claims.
Even the Obama administration is now admitting that taxpayers will lose at least $14 billion on the auto bailout. And that was before GM stock dropped almost 10% over the last two days.

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Donald Hank Comments: No sooner had I finished writing you about how the new paradigm is not about a free market but a market dominated by an unsavory hybrid of government and business (corporatism, or if you will, fascism) than Steph Jasky sent this out, illustrating how this corporatism works and how it rips you off and makes a mockery out of all economic common sense.
A friend just wrote and asked if there are any candidates out there who look like they have integrity or are we simply doomed?
I wrote back and said we are doomed but not to worry, Blockbuster and McDonald will still be around. He then reminded me that Blockbuster is already bankrupt.
I have at least one reader who insists that commentators like me who bring bad news must also supply a suggested remedy.
I asked him if he thought that lab personnel who help diagnose diseases are also responsible for curing the diseases they find.
The only ray of sunshine here is that the truth itself is a liberator. Sooner or later, when the general public is aware enough and sick enough of being conned, they will get off their duffs and do the right thing. (I hope).
Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make ye free.
Don Hank

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