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Morning Mix: Quickest White House Scandal Ever

Morning Mix: Quickest White House Scandal Ever

 

In what may have been the fastest ever scandal to flame up and die out, Ford Motor Company has made some quick headlines after rumors circulated that they were running an ad critical of the federal bailout of the auto industry — and that the White House put pressure on them to take the ad down.

As with most scandals, it started in the rightwing blogosphere, and took off from there.  A columnist in Detroit took the allegations and ran, stating the ad, which was “pulled in response to White House questions (and, presumably, carping from rival GM), threatened to rekindle the negative (if accurate) association just when the president wants credit for their positive results (GM and Chrysler are moving forward, making money and selling vehicles) and to distance himself from any public downside of his decision.”

Except it’s not true.  The ad, according to Ford, had a four week run, and had reached that end. “For those asking, the ad ran as part of a planned rotation and continues to run online. It contains the unscripted comments of a Ford owner. We supported emergency government support for our competitors and continue to support the decisions we made.”

Despite denials from both Ford and the White House, the paper, meanwhile has said that the columnist used “multiple sources” to draw his own conclusion. “The story speaks for itself.”

Watch the “pulled” ad below:

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Photo credit: wikimedia commons

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42 comments

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4:48PM PDT on Oct 3, 2011

Have not seen the ad, as I don't watch much TV and try to avoid as many commercials as possible..but never heard or saw a thing about it until now.

9:15PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

Most of the people who were so upset over the auto company bail outs didn't whimper when Wall Street got the bail out. Why is this? If GM and Chrysler had gone belly up, hundreds of thousands would have been unemployed, not just their employers, but also the suppliers, sales people, mechanics, and others. I am happy that Ford was able to weather the storm without a bail out. But I am not sorry that our government helped the other two companies. Wall Street continues to give million dollar bonuses to failed CEO's, and most of the banks are holding onto the money they got, instead of lending it for mortagages and car loans. Who is the real culprit here?

7:44PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

And, don't forget what brought that free-market orgy in the US to a dead stop: the Great Depression. It didn't hurt the people at the top - the ones responsible for the underhanded deals that created the instability. It destroyed 10s of millions of families and derailed an entire generation.

7:37PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

It seems so easy for people to forget that most rules exist for good reasons. We are where we are today because of the rules governing the conduct of business in the US. Our standard of living, workplace safety, economic stability and growth as a superpower over the last 70 years are because of the rules. The recent instability has been caused by weakening the rules by the Republicans (savings and loan scandal under Reagan; Enron/Adelphia scandal under Dubya; big banks growing to the point that we can't let them fail when they gamble with our money under Dubya). If the rules put in place after the Depression were left alone, we would not be in so severe a recession, and they very likely would have prevented one entirely. That's why those rules were made!

7:37PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

What you spoiled rotten people don't understand is that these "illegal interventions" as you like to call them that supposedly stymie the "free market", are what provide stability and ensure competition in the marketplace. Everything, from anti-trust laws and labor laws to safety regulations, environmental regulations, laws against fraud, insider trading and other shady practices.

And stop this blind yammering about the "free market". Free markets don't work. That's why we don't have any. People scam others right and left, and competition quickly dies at the hands of a few big companies. Look at the Industrial Revolution in the US. You want to go back to that?!? Many rules that we enjoy now didn't exist then - everything from labor laws to anti-trust laws. Life was miserable for 10s of millions of Americans, forever in debt to the corporations they worked for. Tens of thousands died every year from pollution, and tens of thousands more died every year from unsafe working conditions.

And, these people didn't have options - there were no "safe" factories or fair labor practices to be found. Every company copied the other's practices in order to compete with one another by lowering costs at the expense of the employees. After a decade or so there were only two or three railroad companies; two or three steel companies; a handful of big banks, and they controlled their respective markets, including price fixing. Innovation stagnated. Is that what you want?

It

7:28PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

The point about the bailout of GM and Chrysler is that, yes, after many, many months of high demand and little supply, other companies would ramp up production and gain market share. But not US companies. Toyota and Honda and others would have dominated the market (more than they already do), and many of those additional cars would be made outside the US with non-US parts. Losing that manufacturing base would have been absolutely devastating beyond belief. The entire northern-central part of the country would have collapsed into an economic depression that would have left millions of people on the streets with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

The profits would have gone overseas, the manufacturing bases of those countries would have grown, and we would have found ourselves spiraling toward 3rd world status much quicker than we are now.

Is that what you wanted? Are you sure?

6:42PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

Jim B says, """ The federal bailout saved thousands and thousands of jobs. The government made money on the deal: the debt has long since been repaid, with interest."""

Not a word of this amounts to a hill of beans. seems to me your little brain cannot understand the way FREE MARKETS work.You see, in a free market, 1 company fails(another company steps up to the plate and takes over where they left off) A gas station closes, one down the street opens up...If GM had Closed (Tata Motors) would have stepped in, hired all those well trained workers and made cars here in the US,and things would be dandy.

Our Government has NO RIGHT or RESPONSIBILITY to Bail Out Any Company or Any Individual.

It amounts to theft on the Part of the Government. They took out Hard Earned Money, gave it to these Companies without discussing with us first(if we even wanted to bail this company out) Its theft. You pay, I pay, your kids will pay, your grand kids will pay,and none of us will see a Dime Paid back to us. Any Money Stolen from us will be in the Pocket of The Government along with the Interest they might have Received..

Show us (Jim B ) or any of you who fell the Government was right to steal our hard earned money to bail out their buddies. Show us where in That Constitution it says the Government will bail out Business when it fails. You Can't show us, cause that Clause does not exist..

5:38PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

...the president wants credit for their positive results (GM and Chrysler are moving forward, making money and selling vehicles)

Sales and profits may be happening, but that does not deal with flagrantly ignoring the bankruptcy laws in a way tantamount to larceny on the grandest scale in our history.

4:27PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

How do you know when politicians and CEO's are lying?

Their lips are moving.

2:52PM PDT on Sep 29, 2011

It wasn't just Ford that supported Hitler and Fascism - it was the entire GOP. They kept the US out of the war as long as they could, thanks to Japan. Now they have made huge progress turning the US into a Fascist state. The last 30 years have nearly taken us to a 2-class society. We, the serfs, and you know the rest of the story.

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