• Dec 28, 2008
Despite the distinct thumb in the eye given by southern Republican senators like Alabama's Richard Shelby, General Motors and Chrysler have received the cash infusion the companies need to continue operations. Judging by Detroit News columnist John McCormick's inbox, many readers are calling on northern states to give it right back to the South.
McCormick's readers note that those same southern states, which evidently have no qualms about giving huge tax breaks to foreign automakers to set up shop, also also seem to require a disproportionate amount of federal funding, including after natural disasters that require huge sums of federal aid.

Further, when events like Hurricane Katrina strike places like Alabama, automakers like Ford, GM and Chrysler are usually among the first to send in aid and emergency vehicles. McCormick's readers appear to suggest that maybe next time those companies shouldn't be so quick to help. Those who wrote in also suggest that Northerners - many of whom winter or vacation in the South - should consider spending all those dollars elsewhere instead.

Do McCormick's readers have it right? You know where to make your voice heard... let us know.

[Source: Detroit News | Photo: http://katrinapictures.blogspot.com/]


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  • 56 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      I checked this comment thread for some good Bammer jokes! Now come on!

      Okay, I did get a good chuckle out of the ones about Bama having better gummint than the northerners. Those were pretty good the first few times but it's getting a little repetitive.

      Here's one I heard elsewhere: A Bammer gets stopped by a state trooper on I-65. The trooper asks, "Got any ID?" and the Bammer replies "Bout what?"
        • 6 Years Ago
        WHAT DOES A BAMMER GIRL SAY TO HER FATHER?

        "DADDY, GET OFFA ME! YOU'RE CRUSHING MY CIGARETTES!"

        TEE.

        HEE.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wow - What a mess. If Alabama wants to create jobs and works out a deal with anyone to build a factory, so be it. If Michigan wants to do the same, more power to them. I own stock in Ford, but I'm the first to say they do not deserve the bailout. Say what you want about the cause, but the entire union mentality is the primary cause, and we, not the manufacturers, are the secondary cause. GM can build only as many Hummers as we are willing to buy, and judging by the number of losers who used to commute to work in Hummers up until about six months ago, they had a more than willing audience. If we didn't buy them, they wouldn't make them. Going back to the unions, other than the teachers union, who strive for mediocrity with their every teacher is the same and gets the same pay, the auto industry is the second biggest mess. I am all in favor of unions to keep the little guy from getting hurt, or in the case of someone like an electrician, who is trained and licensed (to keep me from being killed in an electical house fire, but the auto unions are just behaving like bullies. Their time came (early this century when they were desperately needed) and went. It's time to close up those shops. Sorry.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Kinda BS. We have been boycotting those american car companies for years for making horrible products. They got a bailout. What makes them think that it wont happen for the south too. lol
      • 6 Years Ago

      So another civil war in the making.
        • 6 Years Ago
        There are some people in the south who will NEVER forget that they lost the civil war. Evidence? Just look for people who still fly the confederate flag.
        • 6 Years Ago
        We live in a great country and still have a good deal of free speech. We are allowed to say stupid things all day long as this thread proves.

        My turn. :)

        As for civil war it is not likely. The socialists took over our schools years ago and now we have two generations of their work. They have taught the kids that we will be Sweden not Cuba. Sweden makes Volvos and Saabs, makes that might not be around very much longer. Cuba makes, er, donkey carts from pieces of very old Russian and American cars.

        The blame game is a socialist thing. In a world of individualism, one has admit his/her own mistakes and then suck it up and try to figure out how to do better. In a socialist world, you form a committee of the "informed," and figure out who to blame and you kill them politically and if necessary, bodily.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Senators from Alabama and Tennessee are just trying to flex what little muscle they have, now that their party has been marginalized.

      This is really the best they can do: Glad-handing the Big Banks to the tune of nearly 1,000,000,000,000 and then berating Detroit when they ask for less than 1/8 as much.

      Michael
      • 6 Years Ago
      There is nothing wrong with McCormick's rhetoric (Senator Shelby has said outrageous things about the domestic industry, whether rooted in fact or fiction) ... but in reality nothing will come of it. And that's okay. It is a good seed to plant. Here's another one: Why don't we build a fence around the Great Lakes for all those Californians who are out to get our fresh water? Again, nothing will come of it ... but let the bastards think about the possibilities.
      • 6 Years Ago
      TEN REASONS TO VISIT VEGAS INSTEAD OF THE SOUTH

      1/ OUR SKANKS HAVE ALL OF THEIR TEETH.

      2/ NO BANJOS BEFORE SEX.

      3/ NO SLEEPING WITH YOUR DAD.

      4/ MORMONS NOT KKK.

      5/ FREEMONT STREET.

      6/ OUR GOVERNOR IS DUMBER THAN ALL YOUR GOVERNORS COMBINED.

      7/ KNIVES AND FORKS.

      8/ FAKE BOOBIES NOT FLAPPY SACKS.

      9/ ELECTRICITY 24/7.

      10/ WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS WILL SOUND EVEN BETTER WHEN YOU TELL YOUR FRIENDS BACK HOME. cAN YOU SAY THE SAME THING ABOUT PICKLE HOLLER OR INBRED SPRINGS?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Please punish the citizens of Alabama by staying away. It is too hot, too poorly educated, and too bigoted for the wise citizens of Detroit.

      Seriously.

      I only wish someone had thought of this sooner.

      To me giving the big 3 and labor unions this money is like giving light beer to an alcoholic. It is a small step that only delays and possibly amplifies a sad end.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Not all of support Shelby, so boyoctting us will hurt the Big 3 even more. Most people here drive domestic vehicles, how many redneck pickup truck driving jokes have you all heard? Most of those are domestic trucks. This is one of the union's poorest states and there's been a lot of corruption in the government. But the people of alabama generally love their country, love domestic vehicles and don't want to see the D3 go away.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Dear lord , deliver me from smallminded people!
      Old Miami boy retired to Alabama. one of the smartest moves I ever made
      • 6 Years Ago
      I agree that Shelby is a hypocrite on this issue (DaimlerChrysler got huge tax breaks and incentives to build their plant in Vance, that builds ML-Class SUVs), but I wouldn't take it out on the citizens of Alabama.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Why not? They voted for him.

        And to the guy who said it was socialist to loan money to the automakers as opposed to tax breaks for the imports, I think you have it bass-ackwards. Tax breaks don't get paid back; loans do.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Gonna have a tough time convincing me that we should punish Alabama for having a better government than Michigan. And with respect to things like weather related disasters, as long as people like to live and vacation with an ocean view I think we'll be cleaning these messes up.

      It hardly seems fair to hold disaster victims in a negative light because Alabama's government made it attractive to foreign auto makers to set up shop.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Surprising how a Southern state, with a large black population, sill votes Republican.
        I mean..Republicans have made of FEMA a joke that cost many lives there, and they still don't get it?
        • 6 Years Ago
        @NotYou

        You may argue until you're blue, but in the grand scheme of things, a tax exemption means someone else foots the bill. Someone who doesn't pay taxes has a lower tax liability than someone who doesn't get the exemption -- in the real world, this means the other guy gets screwed.



        • 6 Years Ago
        notyou,
        Alabama offered a stunning $253 million incentive package to Mercedes. Additionally, the state also offered to train the workers, clear and improve the site, upgrade utilities, and buy 2,500 Mercedes Benz vehicles. All told, it is estimated that the incentive package totaled anywhere from $153,000 to $220,000 per created job. On top of all this, the state gave the foreign automaker a large parcel of land worth between $250 and $300 million, which was coincidentally how much the company expected to invest in building the plant.
        I wonder who got stuck paying for all this. Surely not the taxpayers.
        And to hell with our own, you say.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @ Max

        suprising how most of the 10 poorest cities in the country, starting with Cleveland Detroit Miami Pittsburgh and Newark, have all had Democrat mayors and city councils for the last 20 years and still wont change a thing.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Agreed.

        Also - I love McCormick's lib mentality that equates government bailouts (err, loans) with tax exmeptions (err, breaks).

        Difference: Bailouts take money from others (via taxes). Tax Exemptions allow those to keep what they own*.

        Only in government is an exemption (read: not taking monies from those who own it) considered a loss.

        (* please don't reply with that reverse psychology crap that says that Exemption-A means someone else has to pay more - that's the problem, not a symptom. Unless you're a socialist, you should be complaining that _anyone_ has to pay more.)

        • 6 Years Ago
        ^Hear, hear.
        • 6 Years Ago
        In my opinion, that's ****.

        There are a million different ways to spin it, but starting another Civil War probably isn't the right way to go.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "Gonna have a tough time convincing me that we should punish Alabama for having a better government than Michigan. "

        Actually Alabama has a much more irresponsible government than Michigan. Michigan is looking at a budget deficit of about $617 million next year, just 2.7% of the total budget (ranked 43rd among the 50 states). Alabama is looking at a $1.2 billion budget shortfall, 15% of its budget, and is ranked the 6th worst state in terms of budget gap. It's gotten worse, btw, because last year it was in 7th place.

        The truth is that states like Alabama, California, Arizona and Alaska will go bankrupt before the state of Michigan. Michigan has had a constitutionally mandated balanced budget since 1963. Since Michigan is usually impacted much more severely by recessions than most states, we have experience at tightening our belts and acting fiscally responsible.

        As a matter of fact, when you consider all public and private debt (remember, California has over 60,000 homes in foreclosure, 4 times the number of Michigan) and the steep decline in property values in the Golden State, Californians billions more in debt than Michigan does, including the domestic automakers.

        I tell people in the industrial Midwest to spend their vacation dollars in Puerto Rico. The money stays in the US. The people there don't say my neighbors are greedy, lazy and incompetent. The rum is great, the women are hotter than those inbred southern belles, and the people in Puerto Rico speak better English than the crackers in Dixie.

        If big Dick, Shelby wants to act as though it's 1975 in Detroit, ignoring the massive restructuring that the domestic automakers have done, well, I suppose we should act as though Jim Crow never stopped, lynchings continue, and Bull Connor is still siccing german shepards on black folks.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Correction: That should have been New York, not Alaska.
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