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  • You're Fired! Obama Fires GM's CEO

    General Motors Chairman Rick Wagoner

    Last night, the CEO of General Motors, Rick Wagoner, was fired by the President of the United States. Perhaps not “fired” in the strict legal sense – if legalities matter anymore – but certainly fired for all effective purposes. In a statement by Wagoner released last night, the now-former CEO states specifically that Administration officials “requested that I “step aside”’ as CEO of GM.” “And so I have,” he said. No pretense of an agonized decision, no pretending that the board asked him to go, simply that the White House asked him to go and he left.
    It’s hard to feel sorry for Mr. Wagoner. Not only did he lead GM into economic ruin, but he led the charge to Washington, D.C. for handouts, costing taxpayers billions, and – perhaps worse – inviting political control over the former industrial giant. The real concern is not that Wagoner was fired, but that he was fired by the White House and not a bankruptcy judge.

    And despite President Obama’s statement today that “the federal government has no interest in running GM” that is exactly what it is doing, with every strategic decision being reviewed from Washington. Chrysler is equally under Washington’s thumb – being instructed this week to finalize a pending strategic alliance with Fiat.

    The question isn’t whether Washington will run the auto companies, but for how long. And on this front, there is potentially some good news: bankruptcy – which would provide a politician-free process for enabling (and forcing) GM and Chrysler to restructure, is being actively considered by the Administration, with the president himself today implying that the two firms may need to use “our bankruptcy code as a mechanism to help them restructure quickly and emerge stronger.”

    He’s right – and is right to put bankruptcy squarely on the table. But, at the same time, he promised GM an additional 60 days in taxpayer funding, extending once again the “deadline” for action. This cast doubt on whether the Administration has the political will – now, in 60 days, or ever – to press the bankruptcy button.

    No matter how many CEOs are fired; bankruptcy is the real question facing President Obama. The future of a privately-run automobile industry may depend on the answer.

    Posted in Economics [slideshow_deploy]

    44 Responses to You're Fired! Obama Fires GM's CEO

    1. Renee Baldwin Imperi says:

      I strongly believe that goverment has no right to get involved in big business to such an extent as to take the power to fire a CEO. We need to stop the power grab of this administration. America's very freedoms and it's Soul is at stake. God gave each individual different talents. What makes this adminstration think that they have the talents to do everything better than any other American?

    2. Harold and Connie Lu says:

      We find this move by the president very frightening! It's one more step (following many recent steps)closer to socialism. Can something be done to stop this movement?

    3. Cheryll Lawand F says:

      Where are the lawyers on Constitutional law when you need one! This administration has clearly demonstrated they operate outside the framework of our Constitution. What law gives the president the ability to force the leader of a company out of his job? Our private industries are now being policed and at the fate and opinion of this most intrusive administration.

    4. Eunice Murphy Colum says:

      How can the President fire a CEO from a company? How can all these policy changes from the President and his cronies go into law without the ok from the people of this country. Everything is very very frightening

    5. Spiritof76, New Hamp says:

      America, you wanted change and you are getting it. America is a socialist county now. Is this what our founders fought for with their lives, fortunes and honor? Is this what the American patriots, ordinary people, endured the unimaginable hardship during the Revolutionary War and subsequent conflicts to uphold the freedom of individuals? We have let them all down.

    6. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      So the President fires a CEO then hires a new one? Then the President tells car owners that the Government will guarantee the warranties on their new cars? President Obama has overstepped his bounds by a long shot! Where in the Constitution does it say that the President has the power to hire and fire in the private sector? Where does it say that the Government is allowed to run a business?

      It has happened, folks! Welcome to the United Socialist States of America!

    7. Matt Spencer, Moultr says:

      Where have we come to in this nation when ANY politician is able to tell ANY private individual they must leave their job? Not only did the president tell him he was effectively fired, he also refused GM to give him a severance package. Poor little liberals are laughing right now, because CEO's have been scapegoated just as the Jews were in the 1930's in Germany. Right now they are only sending the CEO's off to the concentration camps, but who is next. We can be sure that this will not stop with CEO's, but will trickle down to effect all of us. Many of the other countries in Europe were unconcerned with what was going on in Germany, but they soon found Hitler knocking at their doors requiring their papers as well!

    8. Lynn Wwntworth, Troy says:

      I'ts truely a shame that over one third of this country has the drive, determination and desire to strive for the American dream by taking risks, working hard and being responsible. Unfortunately a business of GM's magnitude allowing a takeover has opened the door for all of us to be concerned about the possibility of loosing what we have worked so hard for ourselves. Bailing out any business that has shown this much irresponsibility is just being topped by more irresponsibility on the part of our government. It looks like a systimatic takeover of everything we stand for is now well on its way.

    9. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      I would suggest that we all send President Obama an email and tell him how we feel about his actions. Please be respectful as he is the President! The Office commands the respect and we are not Liberals who disrespect everything.


    10. Mary Sommerfeld, Elk says:

      The actions of the first two months of this administration are appalling and frightening. Their interference in the employee and compensation structure of non-government entities is socialistic. Our America is under attack from the very top. Their goal seems to be total control. Like-minded Americans must unite to stop this. We must contact our representatives, stay informed and make our voices heard.

    11. Barb -mn says:


      Who's job is it to arrest those committing TREASON?

    12. Gary Jones, Dearborn says:

      I am outraged that this administration has the audacity to remove a corporate CEO. That is the sole right and responsibility of the share holders and/or the board of directors. Where are we headed? I am truly frightened that America will lose its capitalistic foundation. Are we headed toward socialism?

    13. Susan Altopiedi, Tam says:

      Should we be looking at the History of Germany?

      We are being moved to Socialism by making people believe that these things the President is doing are legal!!! Where are the Constitutional Lawyers? Help Us stop the Insanity of this Administration!

    14. Barbara Rainey, Boon says:

      This is outrageous! For the President of the U.S. to fire the CEO of a corporation is contrary to our system of free enterprise. Government assistance is one thing. In that, "Uncle Sam" is merely providing hand-out for companies, corporations, and individuals in trouble. But firing a CEO is not Uncle Sam's job!

    15. John Fawcett says:

      Rick Wagoner is not a talented CEO. For all of the complaning about Bailouts and the problems they produce, Rick Wagoner was there with his hand out. He should have declared that the only way for GM to solve its problems in the long term is to reorganize. His lack of leadership will cost

      the taxpayers and GM big time. My next car will

      not come from GM, however I do like the new Camaro.

    16. Faith Heynacher says:

      I think that this decision of the president is ultimately the "scariest" thing I have seen from our president so far. The government(which includes the president) has no right to be in business affairs. To be honest he has made a fool of himself by thinking that he has that kind of power. We do not live in a communist nation Nor do we plan on becoming one. The government should not run us from within our big businesses or franchises. Why is it that the government thinks that they can take power over other individuals not involved with the governmental cabinet?

    17. Wyatt Bonnema Anchor says:

      Wake up America!! Where do we draw the line? How do I know the president isn't going to come to my place of employment and fire me?

    18. Jamey, Central Calif says:

      And exactly what are the symptoms of a narcissist? How about a psychopath? Go Bama! You all wanted change. How do you like your change? You better lie if you don't. You might end up out of a job!

    19. Paul Jeffery, Beenle says:

      In Australia I,m pretty sure that GM would not been able to conduct business as it has in the last three months. It would come under " trading while insolvent ". Since GM signed it's last deal with the UAW , any reasonable observer would say GM was not a going concern, so, faced liqidation.The company should now be wound up and it's assets dispersed to secured creditors which of course doesn't include the American taxpayer.


      Paul Jeffery

    20. Paul - North Carolin says:

      Mark my words…the next CEO of GM will be a big contributer to the Obama campaign fund. America voted and is now getting what it deserves, hopefully the next congress election voters wont be so hasty and actually educate themselves before voting. Then maybe a more conservative congress can proceed with teh "Checks and Balance" the way our forefathers intended.

    21. Bertie says:

      Does the term…"New World Order" come to mind. No, let's call it "Euro Federation" or "Global Federation". He should have been fired a long time ago over their squashing of electric cars. Bad move! The firing should have been from GM not Obama, but then now who has the power?

    22. Kent, Virginia says:

      The Fascist Left is on the move. Does anyone in the fawning media see parallels between this administration and Germany of the 1920's and '30's? GM and Chrysler should have been allowed to reorganize under chapter 11 bankruptcy months ago. This group of social engineers in charge of our Nation WANT to control everything! Obama has amassed more debt in two months than all the presidents from Washington to George W. combined. These Liberal Fascists now have the power to bring about the 'CHANGE' they've been pushing for several generations. Look at what Pelosi's world view has done to her home state–that's what America will look like if this wholesale takeover continues.

      The Fascist left have corrupted all public discourse. The American Republic is the only truly radical political revolution in the last thousand years. It will cease to exist under the leadership of the Social Engineers now running our Government.

    23. Juanita, New Jersey says:

      The CEO of GM can be fired by the president because he ran his company to the ground then went begging. So whomever helped him now is the one he gave authority over his company. Sadly, but surely the axe fell on him first.

    24. MEB4, Virginia says:

      Yes …. where are the constitutional lawyers when you need one? And, where are the republicans?? Come on Eric Cantor this is your chance…. stand up and be counted!!!! Or should we sit back and let da bama take everything he wants, including your lunch….How does the united socailist sates of america sound? I get it why don't they??? anyone?

    25. Tim AZ says:

      Obummer has no concerns for the auto company's. His concerns lie with the UAW and maitaining the flow of campaign money to liberals like himself and others. People should not call them auto bailouts. The proper term is UAW bailouts. If you want job security form a union and the union will donate a portion of your union dews to liberals thus insuring your employment. I know it sounds like blackmail but thats exactly what it is. Unions used to be happy just blackmailing companys and passing on the cost to consumers. Now they have the ability to extort from the American citizenry through the govt.. You could call it doubling down because they aren't going to give up on blackmailing the companys and passing that on to the consumer. Union workers are generally high end welfare recipients. so hug a union worker.

    26. Ron, Derry NH says:

      I am pretty sure this is what conquest looks like.

      No laws, no respect and no adherent to past history.

      The US government is on a rampage to cover its butt for writing laws that spoiled their nest eggs and feathering concepts based on extortion of companies that are now bankrupt for all practical purposes and are now fleecing us to maintain the charade.

      We should be terrified that there are still supporters of this dictatorial embezzling of our children's future by power hungry players.

      Just a mere few weeks ago Bush was chastise incessantly for creating a debt that was historicly high but has become so minuscule in comparison that if Bush was evil this government servant is Satan himself.

      The yoke is being forged for your children and the mantra is still all about how handsome he looks or how charming his wife dresses. This exposes how infuriated the communists have been at Americas past stubborness not to comply to their way of servitude to the state. We are being stripped from our constitutional protections by a puppet of Marxism.

      If GM can be dismantled at he whim of the Obot who is protected from his next plan?

    27. Craig Benson Thompso says:

      There is a cure for the type of behavior under discussion. Impeachment!

    28. Jim Sedgwick, Clearf says:

      He's stepped over the line, were is the outrage? when will the rest of the county see the light?

    29. jeff williams il says:

      the only smart one left is Ford, the whole thing is a mess, GM asked for help, should have just filed bankrupcy obama led them right to his door, then took what he wanted all along, i hope Ford never askes for $$ now we see everything comes with a price

    30. Gareth,CA says:

      The corrupt leaders of big buisness have been using the people of not only the US but the world for years. Its about time someone was removed from GM…..they are a corrupt organisation in bed with all the oil companies and only interested in profit and filling their own pockets.

      It takes a strong determination for any president to take this bold move….i applause him for having the strength to do this where previous presidents have failed. At last we have a government that listens to the will of the people.

    31. South_Will_Rise_Agai says:

      I was just wondering…..isn't turn about fair play? Shouldn't we (the private sector) fire Osama…I mean Obama? Obama+Nation=Abomination

    32. Barb -mn says:

      Government has no right to fire anyone in the private sector. Whether Rick Wagoner WAS GOOD OR BAD OR BEGGED for money or not! IT IS NOT GOVERNMENT'S JOB!

    33. Disgusted with Comme says:

      I am disgusted with the comments here that I see. People seem to be really convinced that these corporations should not have to answer to anyone. The fact is these corporations like GM command huge amounts of POWER and effect people ALL OVER the world in HUGE ways. It IS the governments responsibility to stop these juggernauts from giving our country a bad name!

      If we really want to see change, it is absolutely imperative that the corporations are put in their place. I hope he will do the same with the oil companies.

    34. Karl, California says:

      I have never read so much nonsense in my life. "Scary.. Frightening… Socialism" Incredible! GM's CEO asked for handouts paid with our tax money. He led the world's leading auto manufacturer to the ruin. Why shouldn't he be fired by the president? What do you people want? Having him lose the bailout money? Come on, people, read more before stating such stupid comments. I bet you all listen to Rush Limbaugh..

    35. Barb -mn says:

      Disgusted with Commenters and Karl,California: If you guys think this is GOVERNMENT'S job, why did it get to this point? Why didn't they do their job 2trillion dollars ago? It was a set-up. It is the principle of the matter that we are the people who live under freedom and the principles thereof. It's the job of the government to ensure it. The government is a failure.

      It isn't the job of the government to invade in the process of the business in the private sector. GM wasn't the only one to get a bailout. How come there haven't been numerous terminations by the president? Like of the unions who have bankrupt private businesses to meet the selfish demands of the unions. The government enforces preferentially, caters to preferentially, accommodates preferentially and is not fit to lead this free nation.

    36. Rebecca, Texas, USA says:

      For all of those who think it's about time "big business" and "big oil" get "what they deserve", maybe you will be next. Maybe the politicians will decide to come after you or your company next. When will "big labor" and "big bucks education" (also union driven), who have profited greatly from politicians since FDR, get "what they deserve" since they have contributed to the "dumbing down of America" and the villification of achievement and excellence. They, too, are "in bed" with the politicians by giving them big bucks for campaigns and whatever else they want.

    37. Arizona Mildman, Ari says:

      I wish people would quit lying about everything they "sort of" hear. The fact is that GM and Chrysler were told in order to recieve bailout money they were going to have to promise to restructure their management. The CEO of GM who has been under scrutiny since before the movie "Roger and Me" came out by Michael Moore. He was living in luxury and eating out at the country club while his employees were laid off, lost their homes, their cars, and were basically done for. He was accused of almost destroying Saturn and then causing more harm than good from then on. He decided to step down before they had to fire him when the investigation of "blame" took place. The president of the United States doesn't have the authority to fire someone in the private sector. But, I imagine if the president calls and asks for you and starts asking about moves you made that were financial disasters, then starts talking to the rest of the company about restructuring, the best thing to do is cut your losses and get out while you still have your retirement available. This is sensationalism not news reporting. If someone says different, then it is deliberate propagandizing.

    38. Barb -mn says:

      Tell me this, Arizona Mildman, Arizona: if government was doing their job regarding oversight, why would this have COME OUT THIS WAY?! Government deliberately failed to oversee the problems arising so with a quick fix they thought they'd play it out!

    39. Kyle, Worried Americ says:

      Karl, California,

      " I bet you all listen to Rush Limbaugh.."

      …… and I bet you're named after Karl Marx.

    40. Clay, New York says:

      I don't like what the government is doing with GM, but I agree with http://www.ProudlyMadeInAmerica.com in the Rick Wagoner should have been fired. He let GM die under his long watch and got >$100Million in bonuses to do it.

    41. BillyC Boston MA says:

      I was thinking the other day what right judiciary, Constitution or otherwise gives Barry Soetorro ( His Muslim Name) the right to fire Mr Wagoner CEO of GM.Critics of Wagoner say he has to go and on the face of it he drove GM into the ground . The point is , What's stopping this incompetant in the White House driving a Mom and Pop business into bankruptcy or acting like Stalin/Hitler/Mussolini the Government control of any Private Business.

    42. Pingback: Would you have believed? « KC Tea Party Blog

    43. Arizona Mildman says:

      I would like to reply to Barb -mn on March 30th, 2009 at 2:11pm , and I want to say this, "You are absolutely correct. Oversight isn't something we should do afterwards as if the phrase meant that oversight committees are there to correct someone missed seeing. You might remember that word, DEREGULATION that you hear some politicians screaming so often. Those regulations are there for one concept that some people seem to have forgotten. It is called ETHICS and they don't want to regulate that. According to John McCain and the rest of the "…Let's start crap to get our names in the news" section of congress, there is no need for ethical standards and oversight. They call that Big Government, instead of what it is, a system designed ,to keep everyone honest. You tell me, Barb. Goldman Sachs started every financial meltdown we have had since the great depression. When are we going to say, "Screw you, you broke it, you bought it." and let them fend for themselves? Why is it the American taxpayer has to suffer instead of the business failing?

      I can tell you why. There is No Law that says that it is wrong for a politician to lie, in congress or that ethics are important in the banking business.

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