I was flipping through the program guide on our satellite TV system tonight, and discovered yet another post-season college football game: the GMAC Bowl. Pressed the info button, and quickly decided that I couldn't care less about either Tulsa or Ball State. But as I prepared to search for a different program, a thought flashed through my mind:
GMAC? That GMAC? The one that's lost an estimated EIGHT BILLION DOLLARS over the last two years, and just last month reorganized itself into a bank holding company so it could tap SIX BILLION DOLLARS of federal bailout money?
That GMAC? That GMAC has coughed up untold millions of dollars to sponsor a bowl game, and now deigns to approach us, the taxpayers, with hat in hand?
And it's not just GMAC. Taxpayers for Common Sense nails all the other bailout recipients that are sponsoring similar events.
Some time back, I joked to a friend that I wondered if we'd see the "Bankruptcy Bowl: Presented by Citi" from Pasadena on January 1st. Looks like we're getting that, plus much more.
I'm starting to get the same feeling that comes over me when I'm at the supermarket, and the person ahead of me at the checkout line has a large cart full of junk food --- and then pays for it with food stamps. And then whips out a wad of cash to pay for their liquor and cigarettes. The analogy isn't perfect, but it's the same visceral revulsion at the sense of being fleeced, and of being taken advantage of by someone "gaming" the system. No pun intended, but the term really does fit.
I tried watching some of the bowl game, but I had to turn it off.
God help this country.