Hey, Congress

As everybody knows, American automakers are in meltdown and have asked Congress for financial assistance to keep solvent. It’s awfully tough to justify it, as many have noted, because this industry suffers from self-inflicted wounds that substantially pre-date the current economic crisis. In fact, the “Big Three” failed to do the right thing for consumers and the environment for decades, steadfastly opposing every law and regulation that sought to increase human safety or reduce air pollution and greenhouse-gas emissions.

Since we’re not prescient, we don’t know how things will work out in D.C. for this seemingly moribund industry. But we were at least happy to see our state’s Democratic leaders last week advise the folks on Capitol Hill to put protections in place for California’s environment—upholding its clean-air and climate-protection reduction laws—before even considering making any loans to this industry.

Let’s hope Congress is listening.