But the point is that we’ve got the hood up and maybe the engine out on the national economy. That’s a bad situation on a lot of fronts. But it’s also the opportunity to really change things. Not just fix things on the margins but make the big changes. As long as we’re talking about sums of money in the tens and hundreds of billions of dollars, let’s not restrict ourselves to considering whether we throw Detroit a lifeline that keeps them in motion and employing their workers through the current recession. Maybe we need to invest 50 billion dollars in having a mass market fully electric car in five years. I don’t see anybody who doesn’t agree that whatever the costs of letting GM go under, that it’s management who drove this company into the ditch with a lot of terrible decisions and unwillingness to change. So maybe we take GM into some sort of managed restructuring, push out management, clean out the equity holders, and use the ‘company’ as the vehicle for leapfrogging the US into the 21st century, non-hydrocarbon auto industry.
It always annoys the shit out of me during political campaigns when somebody will bring up a government program that costs 3 cents per capita and use it as an example of why we can’t pay for education or health care or veterans’ benefits or other stuff that costs so very much more that it’s almost a joke. We’re not capable of doing big things, is the message, we’re only capable of the small, and even then, not doing it that well. It’s like we all have collective amnesia about World War II and the moon landing, like we’ve internalized so much of the Republicans’ crap about how government can’t do anything so just sit and have a Cheeto feast and bitch some more that we can’t even comprehend the possiblity that our national will can be focused on anything other than war.
You don’t lose people as supporters because you ask them for too much. You lose them because you ask too little. Let me tell you, in every nonprofit organization I’ve been involved in and I’m currently up to my neck in three, it’s the ones that need my help that I help. If somebody isn’t ringing my bell, hell, I’m a busy girl, call me when you have a job for me to do. I think for so long our phone just hasn’t rung that when we do hear the noise it might weird us out a little at first.