We live, it’s often pointed out, in a polarized society, and few things, of late, have been more divisive than the debate over the federal bailout of General Motors and Chrysler.
When first proposed, late last year, surveys found a solid majority of Americans opposed to using billions of taxpayer dollars to prop up the two financially floundering manufacturers. And though that position is beginning to soften, there are still “certain parts of the country that do not like the concept,” concedes GM Chief Financial Officer Ray Young.
In fact, among the hardcore right wing, that opposition appears to be increasing, for any number of reasons, not all of which is specifically due to the issues of saving the automakers. Nonetheless, the bailout is triggering a backlash that has some arch-conservatives calling for an all-out boycott of the makers, and especially of “Government Motors,” as critics call it, which will emerge from bankruptcy with the Treasury Department holding more than 60% of the “new” GM’s stock.
Among those who have given voice to the idea of a boycott is the conservative host Hugh Hewitt, who made the bailout a pet peeve on his nationally-syndicated talk radio show, as well as in the blog he posts on the website, Townhall.com.
“In the two days since the nationalization of GM was announced, the callers and e-mailers to my program have been 10 to 1 against the Obamaization of the American car business,” contended a June 3rd posting, by Hewitt, who added that, “This is a decision that must be reversed. GM must be denationalized.”