[The Times, U.K.]
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Germany
Collapse Leaves Americans 'Cold'
Americans, who have a better understanding of the effectiveness of market
forces than most Europeans, know that GM is ruined … even in the city of
Detroit, home of GM, there are voices that from a German perspective, are dumbfounding."
By Carsten Knop
Translated By Helene
May 27, 2009
Germany - Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Original
The impending insolvency of
General Motors is leaving Americans rather cold. GM is the largest automobile
group in the world. And whereas for German politicians, the mere insolvency of GM's
Opal subsidiary isn't even considered a serious option, in the United States things
are dealt with in a completely different way.
The Americans, who have a
better understanding of the effectiveness of market forces than most Europeans,
know that GM is ruined; their sympathy, therefore, has its limits. Because their
government is helping them even less than those in Europe. He who has
failed must pay the price - and he who succeeds reaps the reward. From the
American point of view, both go together - and, therefore, many Americans aren't
getting hysterical that the sclerotic General Motors Corporation is now collapsing.
Posted by WORLDMEETS.US
SYMPATHY FOR THE CREDITORS
On the contrary, even in the city
of Detroit, home of GM, there are voices that from a German perspective, are dumbfounding.
Not only old GM customers are speaking up, complaining of how it wasn't unusual
for their engines to give up the ghost after only 40,000 miles. Criticism about
the government's handing of GM's case is cutting.
Many Americans don't
sympathize with the workers, but with the creditors, to whom the Obama
government offered only a tiny stake in the restructured business. The trade
unions, by contrast, to whom GM owes a much smaller amount, are to receive a
much greater proportion. That is perceived as unfair.
More than a few are concerned
with the question of what this means for risk to premiums on a market as
important to the economy as corporate bonds. GM bonds were once considered secure
“widow-and-orphan” securities. That is: the Americans don't find insolvency in itself
a bad thing. They do see through the trick, however, that blame should be more-or-less
laid at the door of creditors [the banks] who have, for the most part, been
coldly ousted. But the bill for this blatant strategy to absolve the policies
and managers of blame for the bankruptcy will still have to be presented - and
not only in the form of interest for the remaining $70 billion that Obama will likely
inject into the ramshackle entity after the bankruptcy is filed.
CLICK HERE FOR GERMAN VERSION
[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US June 2, 2:19pm]