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Last week, the government avoided a costly shutdown by cutting $38 billion from the 2012 federal budget. The American people are just now hearing what those cuts consist of, and it appears the auto industry and industry regulation have been affected.

The Detroit News is reporting that the currently vacant Car Czar posts was among the positions that didn't make the cut. The post was last held by Ron Bloom (above), Senior Adviser to the Secretary of the Treasury, who left the job in February. The Car Czar was originally appointed to oversee the government's investment in the industry in the wake of the bankruptcies of General Motors and Chrysler.

We're guessing the task force position won't be missed much by the auto industry, but a $408 million cut from a $ 2.3 billion program to research fuel efficiency technology might be. Also getting the axe? A whopping $2.9 billion from light rail initiatives and $37 million from a program that advocates seatbelt usage.

[Source: The Detroit News]


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  • 34 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I would imagine a "car czar" would represent a conflict of interest now that the government is married to certain companies and the UAW and not others.
      The czar could swing policy to harm non government/UAW owned companies
      • 4 Years Ago
      Glad to hear about the cut $37M for the seatbelt program. If people aren't buckling up at this point, you're not going to change their minds. Quit throwing money at it.

      Makes me wonder how many other millions of government programs could be cut. Makes $38B seem kind of low.
        • 4 Years Ago
        There are a lot of out of work cousins and brother-in-laws back home for these congressmen to keep busy. $1mil for this "study" $3mil for that "initiative"... It adds up. :-)
      • 4 Years Ago
      I thought the light rail thing was a sticking point in the presidents state of the union? 'eh oh well guess we'll leave those fast trains to the Chinese and Japanese.
      I won't miss the Car Czar though. We propped the auto companies up and if they paid us all back then (supposedly) so oversight shouldnt be needed.
      • 4 Years Ago
      That's all well and fine but how about saving some real money? Cut congress' pay in half and eliminate their pensions. Serving should be an honor, and privilege enough!
        • 4 Years Ago
        If they're not in it for the money then that's all the more reason to cut their pay and benefits. We don't have the money to be throwing it away. Isn't that what we keep saying about teachers, police and firefighters? If we can't afford education and safety then we sure as hell can't afford salary and benefits for the wealthy who can support themselves anyway! Teabagging can cut both ways!
        • 4 Years Ago
        No one is in congress for the money. It's all about power. The average congressman is worth almost a million dollars. And they 'only' get paid about 200k a year, so I have a feeling that if push came to shove they would just take the 'pay cut' (or should I say bonus cut?) and continue living off their corporate retirements and investments. As long as they control taxes, they can just keep the law from forcing them to pay their dues, so who cares?
      • 4 Years Ago
      This may be the first time a government position was ever removed. They usually stay there forever, which is why we spend over $4,000,000,000,000/year. I think we can trim a little more than $38B off of that. Anybody want to shoot for a trillion+ dollar cut?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Actually we spend that money on defense and (popular and needed) entitlements. Take a look at the actual budget and maybe we can have a serious conversation about spending that doesn't include NPR, Congressional salaries, or planned parenthood which are nothing compared to the real problem.

        http://wallstats.com/deathandtaxes/
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Joe. If you have ever read the constitution it has a little section called Article one section one, two or three. Take your pick really. That "legal loophole" gives congress the ability to pass laws. Laws creating organizations such as medicare, medicaid, social security or welfare.

        • 4 Years Ago
        @clashcity42 You're acting as though entitlement spending is necessary or proper. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Welfare, immigrant spending, etc, etc, etc, have no legal standing when held up against the US Constitution. They were created via legal loopholes and are nothing more than income redistribution. The heartland provides food and money for this country, and the cities taketh in the form of government checks.

        Knock off the...what is it...60% of federal spending that goes to entitlement spending, keep our tax rates where they are for five years, completely remove our federal debt, and we're a fiscally sound nation, back on track to lead the world.

        Obama would never do that, though. He's more concerned with his golf game and his NCAA brackets.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "the fed gov, wasting your money since... well forever."




      37m on seat belt advocacy? am i eating crazy pills or did i just read that?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Depends on how much you might yield from that program. If you save 400 million in emergency services and healthcare costs then 37 million upfront in seatbelt awareness is a no-brainer
        • 4 Years Ago
        clashcity42 - Yours is the standard big government response, which completely ignores the fact people will get sick/injured/die by some means, and thus the "savings" because of seat belt awareness will never be realized.

        Cut here, cut now, cut deeply everywhere.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Who shaves their sideburns flat like that?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Finally, someone with a relevant comment!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Its idiotic to cut out spending on fuel efficiency and light rails. Even if you don't believe in the whole green movement, getting off foreign fuels should be the United States number one objective. If we could keep even a small percentage of the money we spend on foreign fuel here, then we could start to pay off the national debt and invest in entitlements.

      Cutting infrastructure is the most ridiculous idea i can think of. It generates jobs, keeps money in the US and provides a basic service.
        • 4 Years Ago
        the initial down payment for Highspeedrail is hefty and then taxpayers have to put down a lot of money to continue to pay for it, and it can't work anywhere in the United States except for the North East Corridor.


        This is not infrastructure spending. This is: "Give me my dream ride even though it doesn't lend anything to the economy, and have other people pay (and the economy) for it." Last I remember... infrastructure has to do with things that keep the country moving, that without it... we would be paralyzed.

        And as I said before... our oil and trade deficit built those HSR's in China.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @MarketAndChurch

        This isn't about high speed rail. It is about light rail. Think subways and other urban/near urban transit.

        Seems a shame to be cutting spending on something that reduces our extremely costly dependence on imported oil, helps cut our trade deficit, creates jobs, and increases the productivity of millions of workers who currently have to sit in gridlock conditions trying to get to and from work.

        $37 million on seatbelt advocacy may seem like a luxury. Cutting spending on our transportation infrastructure is a crying shame and is indicative of a country slowly slipping backwards into irrelevance. Makes me sad.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I would think more people who like their cars would want to support light rail - this is a thing that can be used to take you into The City without having to expose your car to The City, and its crappy pothole filled streets, raise manholes, terrible parking conditions, and high theft rates. Much as I like to drive my car, I'd prefer to be able to go into The City without it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        what's idiotic is to continue spending money that we don't have as if there is no consequence to it.

        Americans want these programs, then they're going to have to be willing to pay more taxes for it. It isn't free.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The very fabric of our society is in danger now. It will rip us in twain.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Good! Can the dam czars! They aren't responsive to the needs of the people or constitutionally authorized.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Joe, you truly are a Conservative Neanderthal. Every conservative nut job out there is all over the Dems and Obama, but THEY NEVER SEEM TO HAVE AN ANSWER as to what happened during the Bush years. Bush Tax Cuts? Bad idea to reduce revenue when we are fighting two wars. That's just stupid. Your "Let's Bomb the Heck Out of Them" mentality really worked out, didn't it?

        Entitlements? Please provide proof. Not "Rush Limbaugh" proof, but fact-based proof. I will repudiate each and every line item you come up with and make you go home crying to your daddy.

        Social conservative, eh? Sure sounds like it...Are you one of those "pull yourself up from your bootstraps" guys? One of those, "I did it, so should everybody else" people?

        Open your eyes and grow up please. Listen to NPR and see what the rest of the world is doing. Listen to real news, not biased commentary. They're not trying to break into your wallet, not trying to screw your daughter. Once you are informed and not full of FEAR, please reply back to me and we can talk.

        • 4 Years Ago
        Your conservative ideology simply does not work. Cut spending, yes, but also tax the rich bastards that can afford it. If you can connect how taxing folks that make over 250K will slow job growth, I'll join the NRA, the RNC and lick Rush's stinky bunghole. You conservative wanker.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Foobar, is another intellectually vacant personal attack the best you got? Grow up!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well spoken, Joe. You get it!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Amen. Someone is calling these czars into question on Constitutional grounds, finally. People just assume that the president can do whatever the hell he wants. They don't understand the Constitution. What's worse, 99% of our politicians don't understand the Constitution, or its application to our law.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I would say Bob Bennett was pretty ineffective as Reagan's drug czar, and the purpose is clear. Reward a political crony with a government job who's function has absolutely no congressional oversight. I guess that part can be good or bad, depending on how incompetent the sitting congress is.


        • 4 Years Ago
        @Joe, do you understand the constitution? You sound like you are a constitutional scholar. There's more to it that the right to bear arms...

        Also, it they cut all this "entitlement" you are talking about, I hope all of the folks that use it will end up in your neighborhood robbing you blind. Pay a little to keep these folks sustained and maybe they will better themselves instead of starving and causing major unrest.

        Things are not black and white, they are mostly grey.

        You want cuts? Look at the Pentagon - All the Bushies, (conservative nutjobs) got us into this mess...don't you DARE BLAME OBAMA.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I can sure as hell BLAME OBAMA for creating stimulus bills to pay back favs. To name one organization that got money from the stimulus bill "acorn" we all know what acorn did for Obama...and the use of the stimulus bill to create jobs is an oxymoron since the only jobs it created was Gov jobs which will create a bigger burden on the tax payers keeping those new jobs afloat with tax money..Accounting 101 all it did was create a bigger overhead for the tax payers to pay...just to gain a few points in the underemployment ratings...
        • 4 Years Ago
        Does this include the original czar? The one chartered under the Reagan Administration? You know... the drug czar? Or does it only apply to the "illegal" "extra-governmental" positions that have only existed since the Obama Administration?

        I find it interesting that people are so bent about this now, but they weren't 30 years ago. In fact, they supported the creation of the drug czar position as a positive sign of government addressing a serious problem. (whether that was actually true or not...) So, what's changed? Was the car czar less important than the drug czar? Is it just about the money? Or does hypocrisy truly have no limits?
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