Texas Governor Rick Perry

Friday, November 11, 2011

Three things Calbuzz cannot abide: 1) kicking someone when they’re down 2) taking cheap shots and, uh, … what’s the third one there? Let’s see … taking cheap shots, and let’s see … we can’t, the third one, we can’t … Sorry. Oops.

Anyway, in the spirit of Faith, Hope and … uh, let’s see … you’ll get no piling on from us about Rick Perry’s disastrous Wednesday night debate performance, nor any stupid jokes about the Texas governor telling his kids bedtime stories about Papa Bear, Momma Bear and … Huey, Dewey and … the Two Musketeers.

Oh sure, some may say, well, what about Rick Perry’s commitment to a government of the people, by the people and … the pursuit of life, liberty and … the truth, the whole truth and … the Father, the Son and … the Nina, the Pinta … and the Two Faces of Eve.

But we are not among them.

So don’t give us that stuff about small, medium and.. Wynken, Blinken and… two bags full. Because we hear no evil, see no evil. Ready, aim, on your mark, get set, strike two, you’re out. Veni, Vidi.

And by the way, that was, uh, let’s see, “shooting at lifeboats,” the third thing we were reaching for a while ago.

Battleground bushwah: We’re still scratching our heads about the answer Mitt Romney gave at the debate about the Obama Administration’s bailout of the auto industry in the depths of the economic collapse in 2009.

Preaching to the choir, Mittens earned major hoorahs and huzzahs from a debate audience of a couple hundred Michigan Republican activists, but we can’t help but wonder how his laissez faire free market pandering, not to mention his relax-with-the-facts revisionism, played in the living rooms of the 1 million folks in and around Detroit whose jobs were saved by the federal loan program to General Motors and Chrysler.

As David Welch, the auto industry columnist for Bloomberg Businessweek, not exactly a socialist organ, has written, “It’s tough to argue that the bailout hasn’t worked.”

Romney’s meandering response came after CNBC debate moderator John Harwood did a terrific job of framing the question, cutting the ring in an effort to keep the hyper-slippery wannabe from using his 60-seconds to wiggle and wriggle at will (to the surprise of no one, Mittens wasted no time doing exactly that, starting with a phony elegy to his imaginary blue collar boyhood as a poor but proud Wolverine):

HARWOOD: Governor Romney, I want to switch to the bailout drama that we lived through in this country, and no state understands it better than the state of Michigan. I’m going to talk a little bit about your record on that.

Four years ago when you were running for the Republican nomination and the auto industry was suffering, you said, “Where is Washington?” After the election, when the Bush administration was considering financial assistance for the automakers, you said, “No, let the Detroit go bankrupt.”

Now that the companies are profitable again, after a bailout supported by your Republican governor here in Michigan, you said, “Well, actually, President Obama implemented my plan all along — or he gravitated to my plan.”

With a record like that of seeming to be on all sides of the issue, why should Republicans be confident in the steadiness of your economic leadership?

ROMNEY: John, I care about this state and about auto industry like — I guess like no one else on this stage, having been born and raised here and watched my parents make their life here. I was here in the 1950s and 1960s when Detroit and Michigan was the pride of the nation.

I have seen this industry and I’ve seen this state go through tough times. And my view some years ago was that the federal government, by putting in place CAFÉ requirements that helped foreign automobiles gain market share in the U.S., was hurting Detroit. And so I said, “where is Washington?” They are not doing the job they ought to be doing.

My view with regards to the bailout was that, whether it was by President Bush or by President Obama, it was the wrong way to go. I said from the very beginning they should go through a managed bankruptcy process, a private bankruptcy process.

We have capital markets and bankruptcy, it works in the U.S. The idea of billions of dollars being wasted initially then finally they adopted the managed bankruptcy, I was among others that said we ought to do that.

And then after that, they gave the company to the UAW. They gave General Motors to the UAW and they gave Chrysler to Fiat. My plan, we would have had a private sector bailout with the private sector restructuring and bankruptcy with the private sector guiding the direction as opposed to what we had with government playing its heavy hand.

All righty then.

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