Archive for the ‘automobile’ Category

Top Republican senators oppose automaker bailout

November 16, 2008

Top Republican senators said Sunday they will oppose a Democratic plan to bail out Detroit automakers, calling the U.S. industry a “dinosaur” whose “day of reckoning” is coming. Their opposition raises serious doubts about whether the plan will pass in this week’s postelection session.

Democratic leaders want to use $25 billion of the $700 billion financial industry bailout to help General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler LLC.

By Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press Writer

Sens. Richard Shelby of Alabama and Jon Kyl of Arizona said it would be a mistake to use any of the Wall Street rescue money to prop up the automakers. They said an auto bailout would only postpone the industry’s demise.
Richard Shelby
Senator Shelby

“Companies fail every day and others take their place. I think this is a road we should not go down,” said Shelby, the senior Republican on the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee.

General Motors headquarters is seen October 26, 2008 in Detroit, ... 
General Motors headquarters is seen October 26, 2008 in Detroit, Michigan. Picture taken October 26, 2008.(Rebecca Cook/Reuters)

“They’re not building the right products,” he said. “They’ve got good workers but I don’t believe they’ve got good management. They don’t innovate. They’re a dinosaur in a sense.”

Added Kyl, the Senate’s second-ranking Republican: “Just giving them $25 billion doesn’t change anything. It just puts off for six months or so the day of reckoning.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said over the weekend that the House would provide aid to the ailing industry, though she did not put a price on her plan.

“The House is ready to do it,” said Democratic Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts, chairman of the House Financial Services Committee. “There’s no downside to trying.”
Rep. Barney Frank, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Christopher J. Dodd were among the congressional Democrats negotiating the bailout settlement on Sunday. (Joseph Silverman/The Washington Times)

Above: Ready to bail, from L to R: Rep. Barney Frank, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Christopher J. Dodd. Photo by Joseph Silverman

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081116/ap_on_go
_co/auto_bailout;_ylt=AmAt77VLR57r0Uq41kBoeYWs0NUE

The New World Financial Order

November 16, 2008

For the past seven years, according to Rep. Jim Moran, “We have been guided by a Republican administration who believes in the simplistic notion that people who have wealth are entitled to keep it.” Actually, that “simplistic notion” has been the linchpin of the American system of free enterprise for the past two centuries. It has served to make the United States the most bountiful, wealthy and charitable nation on earth. Yet Moran says that system “doesn’t work in the long run.”

By Oliver North

My fellow Americans, welcome to the long run.

The coincidence of an economic downturn and our most recent political realignment have produced calls for urgent, dramatic, decisive action. Liberal politicians, such as Moran, are suggesting that we all would be better off if we’d adopt a more punitive tax code and use the Internal Revenue Service to redistribute the wealth. Republicans and Democrats already have allied to use our tax dollars to bail out an insurance giant, mortgage companies and financial institutions that made bad loans and extended credit to borrowers who couldn’t pay. Coming soon: tax dollars to save U.S. automakers. Attached to all these U.S. Treasury checks: countless pages of new fine-print regulations designed to prevent future financial stupidity — or to ameliorate its consequences. But as they say in the Marines, “You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.”

Read the rest:
http://www.creators.com/opinion/oliver-
north.html?columnsName=ono

Obama’s White House Limo: Mean Machine

November 14, 2008

An analysis of unauthorized photographs taken while the car was being tested last summer on public roads suggests that the presidential ride will be a truck-based Cadillac. It will presumably replace the Cadillac that President Bush has used since 2005.

 
This Cadillac, disguised for testing, may go to Washington.  Chris Doane/Brenda Priddy & Company
.
This new car will be a Caddy like no other. The photos by Chris Doane, a spy photographer who hunts big automotive game — future models that haven’t been publicly revealed — for magazines and Web sites, provide clues about how specialized presidential transportation has become since the first White House fleet was ordered for William Howard Taft in 1909. President Taft rode in a stock White steam car or a conventional Pierce-Arrow, but the next president will travel in a fortress-like vehicle that was mostly built from scratch.

The photographer noted that the limousine was being tested, possibly for comparison purposes, with a pair of GMC Topkick medium-duty trucks. The limousine seemed to be riding on the same 19.5-inch Goodyear Regional RHS tires as the trucks, indicating that it is far heavier than a civilian Cadillac — even the longest stretch limousines built with the G.M. division’s heavy-duty coachbuilder package. Indeed, it is believed that the limo is based on G.M.’s 2500 line of trucks, which includes an extra-heavy-duty version of the Suburban.

Although the raised roof and wide windshield pillars are inherited from the ultra-armored limousines that entered presidential service in 2001, only educated guesses can be made about the technical details. Because neither the Secret Service nor General Motors will discuss the car, or even confirm that a new one has been under development, it is impossible to provide basic specifications or dimensions. Calls to Cadillac’s media relations department were not returned, and the Secret Service declined to comment.

Read the rest From The New York Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/02/automobiles/02LIMO.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

See also Fox News:
http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/11/14/obama-chic-potent-
new-presidential-limousine-spotted/

Cocaine Blocks Free Trade

November 13, 2008

The expanding cocaine trade in Colombia is undermining President George W. Bush’s effort to push through a free-trade agreement with his southern neighbor.  Despite opposition from Democracts, Bush is trying to seal a deal before he leaves office in January by hitching it to a bailout for U.S. automakers. Álvaro Uribe, the Colombian president, has argued that free trade would produce jobs in Colombia that would provide alternatives to the illegal drug trade. With the global economy in the cellar, that argument has lost much of its luster.

Now it appears the cocaine business is stronger than previously thought. As the United States was pouring $5 billion into Colombia to fight drugs over the past eight years, particularly cocaine, the country’s drug cartels were finding new routes through West Africa and shipping their wares to expanding markets in Europe, Africa, and South America. The U.S. General Accounting Office reported last week that instead of reducing the cultivation and production of drugs by 50 percent, the stated goal of the U.S.-funded Plan Colombia, Uribe has presided over an increase in coca cultivation of 15 percent and an increase in cocaine production of 4 percent. 

The report was ordered by Vice President-elect Joseph Biden, meaning President-elect Barack Obama, one of the main barriers to the free trade deal, probably took note.

Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe, center, gestures, during ... 

Colombia’s President Alvaro Uribe, center, gestures, during a graduation ceremony for new police officers in Bogota, Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2008. At left is Colombia’s Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos, at right, the commander of Army Forces Gen. Freddy Padilla.(AP Photo/Fernando Vergara)

From Newsweek

Read it all:
http://www.blog.newsweek.com/blogs/ov/archive/
2008/11/11/coccaine-a-thriving-industry.aspx