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Trump tests presidential limits with threat to General Motors

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By JONATHAN LEMIRE and ZEKE MILLER

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41 Comments
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Trump sure loves meddling in the free market, and his supporters lap it up. We have communists parading as conservatives.

18 ( +21 / -3 )

Trump has made direct negotiation with business leaders a centerpiece of his administration,  including talks with defense contractor CEOs

Big war industries love Trump. Has anyone seen Trump's tax info to see if he and his family have shares in any of these contractors?

"Look, we made this deal, we've worked with you along the way, we've done other things with mileage standards, for example, and other related regulations,"

The rich get richer and the rest of the country gets the negative effects of Trump's big oil economy.

Deep corporatocracy rules the US.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

Where are all the conservatives complaining about big government and championing a free market and good old capitalism? This goes against what they supposedly stand for, much like their claim on patriotism and religious morality.

Smart move by Trump to cut those subsidies, now GM can close more plants and lay more people off.

Brilliant, stable genius with very large brain.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

The man is deranged, doesn't belong in a White House rather a highly regulated Nut House. People could visit and throw him nuts, he likes nuts, his pockets are full of nuts.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

Screwing up all over the place.

Threatening all and everyone.

Who is this man? The Allmighty?

Agreed: some "special clinic" should take care of him!!

12 ( +12 / -0 )

CrazyJoeToday 02:51 pm JST

Where are all the conservatives complaining about big government and championing a free market and good old capitalism?

Trump isn't canning capitalism he's canning the closing of plants in America, Trump couldn't care less if GM closed Canadian or Mexican automotive plants.

We all have to remember GM was on the verge of bankruptcy and had to go running to Obama and get taxpayers money to stay a float, one would have thought GM would have been looking after the American taxpayer by keeping American plants open and shutting overseas operations first.

-12 ( +1 / -13 )

Just remember, the U.S. and world economy serve at the pleasure of the president.

s/

This is just Trump trying to set himself up as a working class hero to voters in Michigan and Ohio. His economic policy is essentially picking winners and losers, something conservatives were supposed to hate.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Smart move by Trump to cut those subsidies, now GM can close more plants and lay more people off.

Brilliant, stable genius with very large brain

GM should have never been helped the first time back by that other guy. Just let them fail, let them use the bankruptcy laws and let them reconstruct, they might want to decide to build more SUVs and not those tiny cars that no one wants especially in States like Ohio where case prices are very low.

-14 ( +2 / -16 )

trump: c'mon GM. don't do this to me. you're makin'me look bad in front of the red hats. cryin' li'l bish emoji

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Government, er, General Motors needs John Z. DeLorean to come back from the dead to turn them around.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Trump isn't canning capitalism he's canning the closing of plants in America, Trump couldn't care less if GM closed Canadian or Mexican automotive plants.

The closing of plants in America is capitalism at work.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Shows DT isn't the street-smart, ' not-to-me-guys' trade guru he thinks he is.

Got pplayed big time I.e gave GM and co massive tax cuts last year hoping they'd stay loyal, reinvest in the us, hire locals etc but instead they said thank you very much & sent ppl home. Very amateurish.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

More winning.....

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Businesses don't run on patriotism. They don't run on helping out the worker, and they certainly aren't run to help out the President. They're run for profit, and to maximise the return to their shareholders. Expecting businesses to run any other way is like expecting a crocodile to spare your life out of the goodness of its heart.

Only way this wouldn't be happening is if workers in the US were happy to accept Mexican or Chinese wages.

Even I know that, and I'm not a successful businessman like Trump allegedly is.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

they might want to decide to build more SUVs and not those tiny cars that no one wants 

Until gas prices rise again, and then the SUV drivers start their usual whining.

Jimmy Carter was right. Americans have to get over considering the world their oyster.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

President Obama works with industry and other governments to save the US auto industry and millions of jobs when you factor in all the subcontractors and suppliers.

Under Trump both Ford and GM cut models and close plants.

Trump 2020 - "Make America Unemployed Again"

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I thought this guy was all about creating jobs?

He's been made to look bad and thus, the empty threats.

Still, delightful to see Trump go to war on big business.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

GM is suffering due to the fact that steel now costs 25% more. It was Trump that lost 15,000 GM employees their jobs. But wait: "If the facts do not conform to the theory, they must be disposed of."

— N.R.F Maier, "American Psychologist", March 1960

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I thought this guy was all about creating jobs?

Yes and that might be a good thing, because now the company can focus on making cars that the people want.

He's been made to look bad and thus, the empty threats.

Not empty threats, GM decided to close underperforming plants not the President

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Does Trump ever issue orders which are executable? Or does he just throw tantrums when things don't go his way? Seriously - he'll be a history book notation when GM's plans come to fruition, and he thinks they should pay attention to him?

Must be frustrating for Trump to realize he's not the center of the world. He's got two years left, and then this megalomaniac is on his own.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Yes and that might be a good thing, because now the company can focus on making cars that the people want.

Not empty threats, GM decided to close underperforming plants not the President

Trump to Michigan Auto workers during rally in 2016: "If I'm elected you won't lose one plant, you'll have plants coming into this country. You're going to have jobs again - you won't lose one plant - I promise you that..."

Auto plants closed or selected to close during Trump's Presidency: 10

7 ( +7 / -0 )

"I thought this guy was all about creating jobs?"

Oh my...

https://www.forbes.com/sites/chuckdevore/2018/10/16/the-trump-manufacturing-jobs-boom-10-times-obamas-over-21-months/#1063cb825850

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Yes and that might be a good thing, because now the company can focus on making cars that the people want.

How exactly does GM closing plants equate to Trump creating jobs? That is some illogical nonsense.

Oh my...

Oh my indeed . . . Obama inherited an economy the republicans pushed into an abyss and Trump inherited a fundamentally strong economy from Obama.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Oh my...

Who cares!? I have a job. I always will. Always have. How about my stocks? They are down. Trump has failed me.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Auto plants closed or selected to close during Trump's Presidency: 10

Which might be a good thing. Why build a car no one wants. Go around Texas and most midwestern States, most people wouldn’t be caught dead in a death trap.

Not all plants are closing. And besides, the President has nothing to do with it. It’s like me blaming the President for McDonald’s wanting to cancel the Big Mac from its menu line. GM for years have been making crappy cars, I don’t people for not wanting them, but their trucks on the other hand is a different story.

Oh my indeed . . . Obama inherited an economy the republicans pushed into an abyss and

....the only President in history to never see a consistent and straight 3.0% GDP

Trump inherited a fundamentally strong economy from Obama

This is why liberals scare me to death! They think an underperforming economy under 2% and a lack of investments and private sector jobs and the absence of small business and high corporate tax rate is just booming. Yipes!

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

This is why liberals scare me to death!

Trump is president now and my investments are losing money now

7 ( +7 / -0 )

On a partisan I want to laugh and tell the guy from this article that it’s his own fault for being stupid enough to believe Trump, but on a human level I have to feel bad for the guy. He and his wife are out of work and about to lose their home all because they believe trumps lies. Sad.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/trump-gm-layoffs-cuts-promise-economic-policies-tariffs-1.4923245

4 ( +5 / -1 )

This isn't about Trump. It is about union families source of livelihood being destroyed by a giant corporation.

This type of issue USED to be meat for the Democratic party. But the limp wristed "that's insensitive" base of today doesn't look at it that way. Trump is only saying what the Democratic party use to say and that is workers matter.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

What a relief.

https://www.wkyc.com/article/money/business/gm-offers-buyouts-to-18000-salaried-workers-says-layoffs-possible/95-610016420

GM reported good third-quarter results, proving the automaker is, "Still in a good place in terms of our performance and the future." It will continue recruiting and hiring workers needed for next-generation transportation, Morrissey said. 

GM has 18,000 salaried employees who have 12 years or more experience. There is no internal target as to how many GM wants to take the offers.

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

GM reported good third-quarter

Confirms the government bailout was a good idea. Results are good. Government Motors really worked out!!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This type of issue USED to be meat for the Democratic party.

It used to be meat for the Republican party too.

Trump is only saying what the Democratic party use to say and that is workers matter.

Trump says anything. It's what he does that matters, and nothing he is doing has been beneficial to the American workers. His tariffs are hurting multiple industries, his tax returns unsurprisingly didn't trickle down, companies are leaving America, and he's pushing outdated or dying technologies like coal and gasoline powered cars.

Sure, the things he says sound great to the person who is tied up in those industries. But those words are just that, words, and words don't feed families. What these people really need is someone who tells them the truth, that they are working in industries that are becoming non-profitable, then they need to put together some socialist policies to build a safety net for these people, and help them re-train to move into other industries where they can fend for themselves again.

But Trump would rather bleat that 'it's going to be ok because Hillary, and I won, inauguration crowd huge RUSSIA IS A LIE FAKE NEWS'.

He's an entirely ineffectual leader, and literally, not figuratively, literally is the laughingstock of the world.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Nice. Obama’s getting deeper into the fray, and unlike Trump the Original Fake News Birther, Obama’s still keeping it classy.

“Not only did I not get indicted, nobody in my administration got indicted,” the former president said at an event in Houston on Tuesday, “which by the way was the only administration in modern history that that can be said about. In fact, nobody came close to being indicted, partly because the people who joined us were there for the right reasons. We were there to serve.”

Barack Obama lambasts Trump over legal troubles

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/nov/28/barack-obama-lambasts-trump-over-legal-troubles

And for daring to serve, the right called him the Antichrist, whereas with trump they are sycophants.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

GM should have failed. No buyout.

Lacking that, the buyout should have come with 50% profit sharing by their new silent partner, the USGovt, with a slow buy-back possible after 20 yrs and capped total pay for each GM exec at $500K/yr - no bonus allowed.

In 2017, the GM CEO was paid $22M. The CFO was paid $7.1M That's a bunch of pay to fire middle class workers at a profitable company. In 2017, GM stock earned $6+/sh. The same amount in 2018 is expected.

Average GM factory workers earn under $42k/yr, over 500x less than their CEO.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

GM is going to do what’s best for GM because that’s what corporations do. The managers are responsible for increasing shareholder wealth, not worker wealth, not the wealth of city A or B.

Most of the tax break money the corporations got went into stock buybacks and other ways to inflate the price of their stock. That’s how managers make their bonuses. Politicians talked about using the extra money to invest in research and hiring new workers, but there was nothing requiring companies to do so. They just kept their mouths shut and let the politicians do all the talking.

A few companies announced a one-time bonus of a pittance for their workers which has all been spent by now. Great move for headlines, but it’s time to get back to doing what they do: making bonus and raising stock prices.

Trump doesn’t have any part in this other than being a distraction. It exposes the fact that he has no “magic business hand” that makes things better. He’s just another president along for the ride, supported by a GOP who blew the deficit out of the water with tax cuts for companies like GM, who will continue to do what they’ve always done.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Not empty threats, GM decided to close underperforming plants not the President

Do you ever read the actual story or take a moment to consider context of a post?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

For the Trumpeteers, look up how much Trump's tariffs have driven up the cost of steel. It is one of the reasons why GM is shuttering local manufacturing. Trump's trade war is helping created a lot of these problems in the US. I've been smelling the blood in the water for a while now, just remember the expected recession will be labeled Trump's recession once it hits (since he does like having his name on things...). In fact there is already a #Trumprecession.

Not like GM is innocent with the tax cut's being used to buyback stock, but they also did get hit badly from the cost of steel going up...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Trump tests presidential limits with threat to General Motors

Limits to what? Trump hasn’t done anything but talk. Free speech is not a threat to “presidential limits”. An executive order stopping the flow of Congressionally mandated corporate welfare would be a different story.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Wolfpack: An executive order stopping the flow of Congressionally mandated corporate welfare would be a different story.

Agreed.

theFu: In 2017, the GM CEO was paid $22M. The CFO was paid $7.1M That's a bunch of pay to fire middle class workers at a profitable company.

Agreed.

And check out Sears while you're at it. They blew through billions in cash on buybacks instead of investing in the company. The cash is gone and stock prices have collapsed, now the company is going under, and the managers who made it all happen are negotiating paydays of tens of millions of dollars on their way out the door. The last few years of Sears' existence was literally a vehicle for the managers to transfer wealth from the company to their bank accounts, and now innocent people will be put out of work.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

"Don't sell your houses ... don't sell your houses." Another EMPTY promise from Trump. Over to you, Trump supporters! Spin THAT one for us!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Trump haters - things I normally support like union workers take back seat at the glee of Trump getting bad press.

Trump lovers - things I usual hate like government involvement in business matters take back seat to defending Trump's image.

Bizarro World.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Narcissus J. Trumpnocchio, once again, shows how clueless he is.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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