On his Fox News show today, host Glenn Beck and guest Jonah Goldberg compared GM bankruptcy to the Nazi government’s creation of Volkswagon. Goldberg made the claim that GM’s bankruptcy is all part of Obama’s central plan. The option he advocated was to allow the automakers to fail, which would have turned the recession into a depression, but Beck and company didn’t consider that.
Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:
Beck asked Goldberg for any example in history when this kind of stuff has happened. Goldberg answered, “You know I am not calling Barack Obama Hitler,and I am not calling him Nazis and all the rest. In fascism we saw the people’s car. We call it the Volkswagon, where the state said we are going to take over the auto industry, government and business and unions are going to get together and we are going to create cars to fill a political need rather than a market need, and we are going to give people these cars.”
He continued, “Now we have got Barack Obama saying that GM is going to make these affordable fuel efficient cars i.e. cars that Washington and the political and economic planners in Washington want made rather than the cars that the market and the consumer are demanding, and somehow that think that this is all going to work out.”
Jonah Goldberg apparently knows nothing about consumer demand and the auto industry, or he hasn’t went to a car dealership and taken a look around lately. For him to claim that the government is mandating that GM make cars that the consumer doesn’t want, he has to have no clue about what is really going on. The cars people want to buy are the smaller more fuel efficient models a.k.a. what the new GM is going to produce.
Goldberg is also lying when he claims that this is central planning. The Obama administration has stated repeated that the government will not be involved in production decisions. The bailout is designed to keep GM and Chrysler alive so that the recession doesn’t turn into something much worse. Remember that Republicans were pushing for letting these companies fail.
Republicans aren’t interested in protecting jobs, or keeping the auto industry alive. Instead of being practical, they wanted to do the ideologically pure thing, which would have completely collapsed the economy. The Obama/Hitler comparison is just as ludicrous here as it is when it is used to describe Obama’s actions on any other issue. The GOP looks so foolish right now that if these moves work out for Obama, it will be years before Republicans win another election.