Monday, December 8, 2008

Senator Dodd Calls for Firing of GM Auto Exec Rick Waggoner

This is a Dog and Donkey Show but Chris Dodd is creating one of his own...

You gotta’ hand it to Chris Dodd—he’s unsurpassed in cynicism. On Meet the Press yesterday, he called for the ouster of GM CEO Rick Waggoner. As if Congress should now be in charge of hiring and firing at American corporations.

I don’t know Waggoner, and if the GM board wants to fire him, that would be none of my business. But the arrogance of a U.S. Senator trying to pressure a corporation with a management change seems bizarre and out of order. Waggoner’s not a crook, is he? Whereas you could make the argument that Chris Dodd is, sort of, with his cheap money loan from bankrupt Countrywide Bank pal Angelo Mozilo.

The other bizarre thing about Dodd’s comments is that he doesn’t know how to run a business whereas Waggoner probably does. But the really troubling thing, to me, is the kind of thinking reflected in Dodd’s political thinking. It seems to me to be the worst kind of cynicism and political manipulation.

On the one hand, calling for management change at GM is pet food for the left. Firing Waggoner and some other auto execs would satisfy the blood lust of the anti-capitalist Democrats who stop just sort of chanting “Death to Wall Street,” “Death to the Oil Companies,” “Death to Capitalism!”

Chris Dodd believes also that his corporate meddling will be a sop to conservative Republicans and Democrats who oppose any kind of auto bailout. It is a move calculated to demonstrate he is willing to play “hard ball” politics to achieve his personal political goal of being the guy who saved the UAW from embarrassment and paying them back for financial support during the recent general elections. Had Dodd called for the resignation of UAW executive Ron Gettelfinger, his comments may have gained some credibility. Otherwise, he should explain next week on Meet the Press why and how his arrogant call for Waggoner’s head is anything but another Democrat Dog and Donkey show.

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