...the automobile companies of Detroit did not harrumph that the Gulf Coast should have been better prepared.That's just one example. Detroit's Big 3 are known for their charity and generosity in communities across our country. Now its their turn to ask for help. Before you just brush them off and say no, consider what else Walsh had to say:
They didn’t sit back and wait for New Orleans to submit a detailed plan for future repair of the ruptured levees.[...]
Between them, the three Detroit auto companies gave more than $18 million in cash and vehicles to the Katrina relief effort in the ensuing months. No strings attached.
If you see a fellow American is drowning, gasping for air, do you quiz him for awhile about whether he’s drunk or why he never learned to swim better? Or do you throw him a lifebuoy and ask questions later?Millions of lives are hanging in the balance, senators, including those of children, seniors and others who rely on the workers for their incomes. Please consider them when you make your decision. This is about more than unions or poorly managed companies. This is about families. They don't deserve to have their feet held to the fire.
That, it seems to me, is where we are with America’s car companies.
You can do nothing and watch them die, senators.
Or you can rush in immediately with emergency aid – as GM, Ford and Chrysler did in the case of Hurricane Katrina, and after the Sept. 11 terrorist attack, and during countless other disasters.
And you can hold their feet to the fire afterward, empowering a strong auto czar to make sure they do what’s needed to withstand future shocks.
“The quality of mercy is not strained, It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven, Upon the place beneath: it is twice blest, It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” - William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice.
(Cross-posted at Blogging for MI.)