Tuesday, November 18, 2008
As I enjoy telling my classes, years ago I worked on a series of deals for a big French company that was partly owned by the French government. It was your classic French setup. The CEO and top officers of this company were classic French technocrats, graduates of grandes ecoles in Paris, quantitatively oriented, smart and tough. They took the metro to work. When they saw how American corporate officers lived, the private jets and hunting lodges, they could not wait to buy the American companies and join the fun. But before they were corrupted, they were models of civic responsibility. If you had to have semi-public bureaucrats running a big industrial company, these would be the guys.
Is it a good system? No, it's terrible. Inefficient and all that. But now consider what Congress
is considering. (via here
.) An oversight board for GM run by Congress
? Are you out of your mind
? Somehow the unfathomably inefficient US auto industry when mated with the bafflingly corrupt Congress will result in something better? If we are going to go socialist, could we at least do it in a semi-intelligent way? Could we at least imitate Old Europe and not Latin America? Could we at least decline in a decorus manner and not explode into a horrific pork fandango? The idea is to become socialist and die slowly of ossifcation, not glut yourself to death in an orgy of incompetence.
Barney Frank really is the most dangerous man in America. How soon and how hard Obama steps on him is going to be the measure of his presidency. Frank is just a flat out crony-corporatist-socialist, a plunder puppy, who wants his hands on the economy so he and his pals can run it out of Washington. This is not high minded Harvard School of Public Health style socialism. This is really bad stuff.