Don’t Be Hasty

President Obama is starting to echo John Keating’s quote from The Dead Poet’s Society,

Now I want you to rip out that page. Go on, rip out the entire page. You heard me, rip it out. Rip it out!

 But this isn’t the introduction to a poetry book he’s asking us deface, no this would be the tomes of American law that we are to disregard. The fate of American investment now sits before the highest court in the land to determine if the destruction will go unchecked.

Just over a month ago, Chrysler was forced into bankruptcy by our president, and the whole structure of stakeholders was shaken. What was once a 20% Daimler and 80% Cerberus enterprise is now slated to be 2% Canadian Government, 8% US Government, 35% Fiat, and 55% UAW. A number of secured creditors, who should have been the first in line to receive funds or a stake in the reorganized Chrysler have been left out of the deal entirely.

As a result, several Indiana funds have brought their case before the Supreme Court. While the bankruptcy of Chrysler has moved at an alarming rate, Chrysler, Fiat, and the US Justice Department have each filed a brief with the Supreme Court encouraging it to keep the ball rolling. The briefs collectively urge the court to hurry to a decision as the fate of Chrysler is uncertain past June 15th when Fiat is to close with Chrysler. If Chrysler is not sold on this date, Fiat can withdraw from the deal.

The argument of Chrysler’s continued loss each day the court delays should be countered with the fact that the court is being asked to shake the economy to its core. If the court should establish that the Indiana funds do not have a right to a stake in or funds from Chrysler before the government, investment as we know it will cease to exist. Such a ruling would set the precedent that the rules of investment are subordinate to political wants. President Obama has said of the creditors,

They were hoping that everybody else would make sacrifices, and they would have to make none,

Mr. President, what you ask for is the sacrifice of freedom, and in its place, government rule.  How can you ask us to do that?

Adam Rule – MCPP Intern


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