Letters

Letters 05-23-2016

Examine The Priorities Are you disgusted about closing schools, crumbling roads and bridges, and cuts everywhere? Investigate funding priorities of legislators. In 1985 at the request of President Reagan, Grover Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). For 30 years Norquist asked every federal and state candidate and incumbent to sign the pledge to vote against any increase in taxes. The cost of living has risen significantly since 1985; think houses, cars, health care, college, etc...

Make TC A Community For Children Let’s be that town that invests in children actively getting themselves to school in all of our neighborhoods. Let’s be that town that supports active, healthy, ready-to-learn children in all of our neighborhoods...

Where Are Real Christian Politicians? As a practicing Christian, I was very disappointed with the Rev. Dr. William C. Myers statements concerning the current presidential primaries (May 8). Instead of using the opportunity to share the message of Christ, he focused on Old Testament prophecies. Christ gave us a new commandment: to love one another...

Not A Great Plant Pick As outreach specialist for the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network and a citizen concerned about the health of our region’s natural areas, I was disappointed by the recent “Listen to the Local Experts” feature. When asked for their “best native plant pick,” three of the four garden centers referenced non-native plants including myrtle, which is incredibly invasive...

Truth About Plants Your feature, “listen to the local experts” contains an error that is not helpful for the birds and butterflies that try to live in northwest Michigan. Myrtle is not a native plant. The plant is also known as vinca and periwinkle...

Ask the Real Plant Experts This letter is written to express my serious concern about a recent “Listen To Your Local Experts” article where local nurseries suggested their favorite native plant. Three of the four suggested non-native plants and one suggested is an invasive and cause of serious damage to Michigan native plants in the woods. The article is both sad and alarming...

My Plant Picks In last week’s featured article “Listen to the Local Experts,” I was shocked at the responses from the local “experts” to the question about best native plant pick. Of the four “experts” two were completely wrong and one acknowledged that their pick, gingko tree, was from East Asia, only one responded with an excellent native plant, the serviceberry tree...

NOTE: Thank you to TC-based Eagle Eye Drone Service for the cover photo, taken high over Sixth Street in Traverse City.

Home · Articles · News · Random Thoughts · What would Mr. Scrooge...
. . . .

What would Mr. Scrooge think?

Robert Downes - December 15th, 2008
What does Mr. Scrooge think about the Big 3 auto bailout?
Meaning, the Republican Scrooges in the Senate who killed the rescue of the auto industry last week, at a time when the recession is expected to last for years...
Let’s take a trip with the Ghost of Christmas Present, shall we?

Mr. Scrooge: “Bah, humbug! I’ll tell you what I think of these short-sighted, fat-cat dinosaurs from Detroit, dragging 400,000 GM retirees in their wake, like the chains of Jacob Marley... (Rattle, rattle) You UAW workers never voted for me in the first place, and it’s the banks I care about! The banks, the banks! Where’s my change purse? Ah, here, my dears -- a $700 billion contribution to you good bankers. Spend it as you will! No strings attached -- it’s Christmas, after all! Bless you, my boys.
“But for you miserable automakers and your blue collar ilk, only a lump of coal, and not a penny in my purse for you!”

Bob Cratchit: “But Mr. Scrooge, if the Big 3 go under, it will mean three million people out of work! And 3,000 auto parts suppliers will likely go under as well, with millions more jobs lost.”

Mr. Scrooge: “Nonsense, my boy -- they’ll simply go into Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings and reorganize the companies. They’ll be able to toss those retirement benefits on the rubbish heap.
“Did you know that $1,600 of the sale of every GM vehicle goes to pay for retiree health-care benefits alone? Why, GM has 400,000 retirees to support, and Toyota has only 700. Why should I part with a single penny from my purse to support such a reckless scheme?”

Ghost of Marley: “Look Scrooge, can a poor ghost interject here? Recall that if GM, Chrysler and Ford go bankrupt, their suppliers will be paid back only pennies on the dollar for all they are owed.
“Suppose that there are auto parts suppliers in a benighted place, like -- say, Northern Michigan -- and they receive only 10 cents on the dollar for what GM owes them. How will they afford to pay their employees? How will they stay in business?”

Scrooge: “Bah, humbug! The only solution, in my view, is to let the Big 3 fail and get bought up by Toyota or Hyundai. They‘ll start with a clean slate, with Michigan begging them to come in with wage cuts and tax breaks; and with no benefits or health care bills to pay, no pensions and ‘legacy’ costs.”
(A smile dawns on Mr. Scrooge‘s face at the very thought of it.)

Tiny Tim: “But, please, Mr. Scrooge -- how will the people who are out of work pay their bills? How will they live?”

Mr. Scrooge: “They can live in their cars for starters -- how‘s that for an ‘auto bailout‘? And they can do what every person in need does these days and borrow on their credit cards. At 30 percent interest, it will be good for the banks!”

Ghost of Marley: “Gee, I‘d forgotten that Congress allowed the banks to raise interest rates on credit cards to insane, usurious levels a few years ago... Back then there was a limit of 19 percent on credit card interest, but Republicans and Democrats alike voted to allow interest rates to go sky-high. What a brilliant solution, Mr. Scrooge: we‘ll all simply borrow more on our credit cards and the 30 percent interest will do wonders for the banks!”

Bob Cratchit: “But Mr. Scrooge, think of the personal bankruptcies! People can’t afford 30 percent interest on their credit cards. They won’t be able to pay for their mortgages... They won‘t be able to buy new cars! Even the banks will suffer...”

Mr. Scrooge: “Stuff it, Cratchit, or I‘ll cut off your kid‘s Medicaid benefits.”

Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come: “Lord, Mr. Scrooge, you really need to take a trip to the future to see what you‘ve done. You’re nasty, Mr. Scrooge -- you really need to smell the coffee...”

Mr. Scrooge: “Bah, humbug! And Marley, stop rattling those chains!”

Ghost of Marley: “That‘s not me, Mr. Scrooge. That‘s the sound of the stock market crashing -- again...”

Tiny Tim: “God help us, every one!“



 
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