Kathie Lee Gifford, Sweatshop Goddess, Weighs in on Bush Bailout  

I couldn't believe my ears. I just had to transcribe it:

other chick: ...He didn't like calling it a bailout cause that sounds like here's a pile of money

Kathie Lee: A three month loan

other chick: It's a loan and it's a 17-18 billion so

Kathie Lee: To get their act together within the next3 months

Other chick: And they have to restructure, and like here's the deal, it's not like, here's the money, and do what you will with that.

Kathie Lee: and good luck it's not good luck

other chick: and they have to restructure by march and play by March.

Kathie Lee (making no sense at all): But what else could they really do? You know? I've I I I don't understand quite yet the specifics of how it's going to affect the UAW, but it will be fascinating.

other chick: it will be interesting to see and he (meaning Bush) was saying about car companies going belly up, going bankrupt, is not an option

Kathie Lee: yeah,

other chic: especially, not now. and and people everywhere are conscious about it. people who do have money and who are shopping are

Kathie Lee: are embarrassed by it

other chick: right

Okay, let me get this straight, you've just equated 3 million American jobs to rich people shopping at Bergdorfs or Neiman Marcus and asking for "plain bags"?

Yeah, I don't get my news from her. I was just flipping channels and there I am and I get to hear all about the President's Plan for the Auto Industry. He wants to strip workers and retirees of their rights that were negotiated by their union for nearly a century now, strip them and replace it with, the Corker Plan of Destruction. From CBS News:

Purpose: The terms and conditions of the financing provided by the Treasury Department will facilitate restructuring of our domestic auto industry, prevent disorderly bankruptcies during a time of economic difficulty, and protect the taxpayer by ensuring that only financially viable firms receive financing.

Amount: Auto manufacturers will be provided with $13.4 B in short-term financing from the TARP, with an additional $4 B available in February, contingent upon drawing down the second tranche of TARP funds.

Viability Requirement: The firms must use these funds to become financially viable. Taxpayers will not be asked to provide financing for firms that do not become viable. If the firms have not attained viability by March 31, 2009, the loan will be called and all funds returned to the Treasury.

Wait, I'm not even done yet:

Reduce debts by 2/3 via a debt for equity exchange.
Make one-half of VEBA payments in the form of stock.
Eliminate the jobs bank.
Work rules that are competitive with transplant auto manufacturers by 12/31/09.
Wages that are competitive with those of transplant auto manufacturers by 12/31/09.

Let's set aside that the wages ARE competitive with transplants (That means FOREIGN companies of Nissan , Honda and Toyota). Work Rules that are competitive with foreign automakers? Elimination of the Jobs Bank? And still, NOTHING about the Dealerships?

Emptywheel gets what a slap in the face of American Workers this really is:

So what Bush is demanding is that the UAW lower wages plus pensions to the level of Japanese wages plus pension (though since they have very few retirees, their pension number is basically zero). Alternately, they could lower this number by basically picking the pocket of a bunch of seniors, by taking away pension money those seniors already earned while they were still working. But one or the other will have to happen.

This is the Bush plan of basically an orderly bankruptcy, one where the workers get screwed by their own government.

So, let's sum all this up:

Kathie Lee Gifford equates this slap in the face as a restructuring. She also thinks that destroying worker pay and seniors retirement packages that they worked for and negotiated with their employers to receive are the same as rich people asking for unmarked bags at Neiman Marcus.

And Bush, well, we know he doesn't think, he just reacts and he saw a fantastic opportunity to screw American workers and here I thought his Executive Order was his parting shot at workers, clearly, he was just getting started.

And just one more word on Kathie Lee Gifford, anyone who's been found to have loaned her name to a clothing line that ran sweatshops, not once, but twice in 4 years, isn't someone I care to listen to when it comes to workers, worker pay or unions. You're a pretty discredited source already.

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