As Detroit extends its tin cup to DC, the government is making a lengthy list of preconditions and checking it twice. Why not keep things simple and nationalize the struggling GM? Any government loan wouldn’t be big enough, and despite all the misplaced anger directed at the Big Three, they still churn out great cars, writes Dan Neil in the Los Angeles Times. It would be a sound investment that allows the government to pursue pet goals like greener vehicles.
“The government can afford long-term planning,” which is key to the company’s health, Neil writes. “Putting Uncle Sam in charge would fundamentally enlarge the return-on-investment horizon.” Plus, foreign automakers are “quasi-national” anyway. “Let's avoid the euphemisms,” Neil says. “By nationalizing GM, we can aim the company's astonishing resources at one of the biggest public-policy problems we have: oil.”