Though the U.S. government will be the majority stockholder of the new General Motors, the administration says it'll keep its hands off management decisions.
"What I have no interest in doing is running GM," the president declared today as he announced the additional $30-billion dollar "investment" to help the company emerge from bankruptcy and become competitive again.
Mr. Obama said a new Board of Directors and management team will "call the shots" for GM - not the government.
But the president will be missing an opportunity to put his administration's imprint on the new GM. Think of the impact if he took it upon himself to name the new models of GM cars:"The Prosperity" - a new luxury sedan in which you can drive into the future leaving recession in the rear view mirror."The Surge" - a new sports model from GM the reflects both the thousands of additional troops sent to Afghanistan as well as growth in the Gross Domestic Product."The Reform" - a new entry in GM's line of minivans, designed to reflect a soccer mom's concern about improving health care, education and energy policies.
A number of those with whom I converse on Twitter came up with other ideas, some of which reflect a decidedly different political viewpoint from President Obama."The Bailout" - a new rescue vehicle from GM.."The Stimulus" - runs on money the government doesn't have."The Repo" - too expensive to make the payments.A plug-in hybrid called "Yes We Can.""The Taxpayer" - a beat-up second-hand truck; lots of miles but still running.
Least likely to find its name on a new GM nameplate was a suggestion from a tweeter who wished to register his rejection of the politically correct. He suggests a vehicle that comes off the drawing board as the "Comprehensive Regionally-Adjusted Perfectly Organic Low-Carbon Automobile." Acronym: "Crapola."
Don't even ask about the accessories.
Mark Knoller is a CBS News White House correspondent. You can read more of his posts in Hotsheet here. You can also follow him on Twitter here: http://twitter.com/markknoller.