The Globe and Mail is reporting on the new cost estimates of the auto sector bailout bill, which could be as large as $13.5 billion dollars. What kind of cost is that putting on taxpayers - many of whom don't have the high wages or padded benefits packages that autoworkers enjoy?
At General Motors of Canada Ltd. alone, the rescue package could amount to a staggering $1.4-million for every job saved, with no guarantee that the bailout will ensure the long-term survival of the company's remaining auto assembly and engine plants.
You read that right - GM alone will cost taxpayers $1.4 million per job.
What's worse is that it's awfully hard to believe that these bailouts actually create or save any jobs at all.
“You're not going to save jobs. All you are going to do is destroy jobs at Ford and Toyota,” said Mark Milke, director of research at the Frontier Centre for Public Policy in Calgary.
Mr. Milke dismisses the bailouts of GM and Chrysler as “a massive transfer of wealth to companies that consumers have already rejected.” The result, he maintains, is that governments “are punishing the companies that have actually run their businesses very well.”
More evidence that when government gets involved in business it's no longer "give the customers what they want," it's "make them pay for what they don't."
Cross posted to the Shotgun.